I’ll be honest this made a lot more sense when I was writing it fresh off the the original post – so I might recommend checking that out before you have a look down below. Either way it’s a fun read, and remember I’ll be sending out a new Mailing List this January 31st with never before seen picture, so remember to subscribe to catch it before anyone else.
Poldark Season 5 – Let’s Fix it
Well, after almost a month of waiting here it is at last, how I would fix Poldark Season 5 – grab the tissues, because apparently I don’t enjoy happy endings.
- Ross Poldark – Former soldier, now Politician. Married and father of three. The Protagonist
- Demelza Poldark – Former Kitchen maid and now wife of a politician; married with two children. Main Love interest to Protagonist.
- George Warleggan – Banker and Mine Owner. Widower with one birth child and two step children. Former Villain
- Elizabeth Warleggan – Former sweetheart of Ross Poldark; and wife of George Warleggan and mother of three children. Deceased.
- Geoffrey Charles Poldark – Spoilt wanna-be soldier. First son of Elizabeth Warleggan; step son of George Warleggan and cousin to Ross Poldark. A Young romantic lead – though why I can’t understand.
- Drake and Morwenna Carne – a blacksmith and a school teacher respectively. One the brother of Demelza and the other the cousin of Elizabeth. The Beta couple.
- Dwight Enys – a doctor. Former best friend to Ross, married and father of one deceased child. The Voice of reason.
- Caroline Enys – a socialite. Wife of Dr. Enys and mother to a deceased daughter. A miserable wife.
The New Players
- Ned Despard – Former General and Former Governor of Jamaica. Married to Kitty and friend of Poldark. A new Task
- Kitty Despard – a protestor and former slave. Wife of Ned Despard. A helpful player
- Ralph Hanson – a plantation owner. Wannabe future father-in-law of George Warleggan. A Villain
- Cecily Hanson – a young protestor. Daughter of Ralph Hanson. Romantic Interest for Geoffrey-Charles.
- Tress Tregidden – the new maid of Ross and Demelza Poldark. Seems to hate Demelza and fancies Poldark, for some reason that’s never made clear in the show.
- Joseph Merceron – godfather of crime in London. The secret brother of Ralph Hanson. The Main Villain
Wow, that’s a lot of people – and it’s not even all of them. There are too many characters and their storylines to keep track of here, and more importantly too many villains. In the past Poldark only really had the Warleggans as any kind of major embodied threat to the heroes. With a handful of minor villains to go along with them. But a major scope crime lord, and his secret half-brother, as well as whatever the maid was doing – not to mention the French that come in at the end. No, no it’s too much.
So, first thing, we get rid of Joseph Merceron and his secret half-brother Ralph Hanson – their maneuverers are not only unneeded for most of the good drama to take place, but they also complicate an already over stuffed mess of a final season.
There we haven’t even really begun yet and we’re already two new characters down.
- Ned Despard dies in the first episode, there’s no need to keep him around any longer than that.
- Poldark goes to London the first time to try and free him, but he fails. Yet his poking into the corruption of the government still gets him noticed by important people – he’s just not told about it in the first god damned episode.
- Enraged by his defeat Poldark leaves London, with Dwight and Kitty in tow.
- Poldark offers Kitty a place with him and Demelza – without of course consulting with Demelza first
- Without Ned there to cause trouble – to lead the angry mob to the Warleggans mansion, or to yell at good honest miners that they’re cowards if they don’t use a just a little more dynamite, that part of the tale falls to Ross himself. He doesn’t get to spend the story smiling indulgently at the man who starts fights in bars, or throws aside genuine concern because it doesn’t fit into his view of what bravery is. Now, he is that man.
- It’s grief from the loss of Ned, mingled with the already formed guilt at the loss of Elizabeth (yes, in this version of the show that will be addressed and Ross won’t be able to toss it aside with a few placating words from Demelza). But beyond that Ross has lost faith in his government, and doesn’t see the point in playing nice anymore.
- There’s nothing Demelza can do or say that will make this…madman see sense. And every time she tries it just starts another fight, each one more bitter than the last. (And that’s not even getting into the fights they’ll have because of Plot B.)
- Eventually Ross’ anger and both Poldark’s screaming creates such a toxic environment, that Kitty feels she has no choice but to accept Dwight and Caroline’s offer to reside in their residence instead.
- It’s another blow for Ross – who feels like he’s failed his old friend all over again. He’ll be angry at himself of course, for driving Kitty away but that anger with manifest more as snipes at Demelza for doing the same thing. But at this point they’re fighting so much who would really notice anymore. No, the main and more notable part of Ross’ new found talent for bile gets flung at Dwight Enys for taking Kitty away.
- Dwight and Ross’ friendship has been cooling anyway thanks to Plot C – but in an anger induced tirade, when Ross accuses Dwight of not only disloyalty to Ned (whose praises the doctor had refused to sing) but of having ungentlemanly intentions towards Kitty, the doctor punches the mine owner and tells him to get out.
- His attitude having cut him off from friends, compatriotism and even his own wife – Ross is left alone to think on all that the world has taken away from him.
- And that’s when he gets the message – the Warleggans have shut their mine due to expenses. The mine that was once a Poldark mine.
- Under the influence of not only his own and anger and grief – George married Elizabeth, stole the Poldark ancestral home, and he stood for everything Ross Poldark had ever fought against – but the cunning and inciting words of his new maid Tress; Ross gathers up an angry mob.
- Now, if you’re already a Poldark fan I know what you’ll be saying right about now – Wee Lassie, what are you doing? Poldark would never lead a mob up to his ancestral home, and to that I say…here me out. Yes, if Poldark was in a sound state of mine, he would never do this – he’s helped turn away such mobs from the Poldark home in the past. But the point here is he isn’t in a sound state of mind. He’s grieving twice over now; he’s lost faith in at the very least his government and its capacity to take care of those that needed help and most of all he’s isolated from anyone who’d talk sense into him.
- He marches on George’s house, knocks down the door when George “or at least who he thinks is George” refuses to open. And finds himself slap bang in the middle of Plot C.
But before we dive into that, let’s take step back and look at Plot B. In the show Demelza needs to step up at home because Ross is away at London, which is treated like it’s this new big thing, but I don’t know why. Ross had been away in London for long stretches of the year before.
Most of the drama in this part of the story comes from Demelza clashing with the untrustworthy new maid Tress Tregidden. Who thinks Demelza has forgotten her roots, and loves causing trouble? Which sounds fine on paper, but was really dumb in execution. Mainly because Tress seemed to lack a direct goal for all the mayhem she caused – first it seems like she wants more rights for the poor, but then Demelza hires her and suddenly she wants to replace her as mistress of the house. So, she decides to do that by…seducing Demelza’s brother. She also for some reason starts printing her own money because now she’s working for the main villains, but she wasn’t when she did those other bad things. I don’t know it’s all just so very confusing. So, let’s see if we can cut down on all this mess.
- For starters, let’s change Tress’ introduction – we don’t need to see her as part of a mob of angry people unable to get work from the Poldark mine – she’s going to end up the Poldark’s maid, let’s just introduce her as the new Poldark maid.
- However, beyond that the most annoying thing about Tress is not her actions themselves – so for our rewrite we’re basically going to keep those the same.
- No, what I’m gonna chance – is her goal. Namely, I’m making her a French spy. It brings the French plot in sooner, and gives Tress a consistent motivation for her troublemaking.
- We also get more of a reason for Ross to start romancing her in order to keep his undercover position with the Frenchmen up. It tries to do that in the show but like why would the French care if Ross was having a relationship with Tress. Like she’s some random poor girl, who cares show…who cares.
- Plot C involves the madness of Sir George Warleggan, the only decent storyline of the show – in fact it’s so decent that I recommend you go watch these parts of season 5 right now. Don’t worry I’ll wait, go and find it on Amazon, or Netflix, or wherever they’re playing it today.
- You done? Good. Well, we’re keeping most of what happens pretty much the same, the only really difference here is that unlike the real show, we’re not going to have George mysteriously forget about his madness, and the torture that other doctor put him through before Dwight stopped him from jumping off that cliff. Bumps to the head are never so quick and easy as that.
- So, George isn’t going to forget, but he will be hurt.
- When Ross barges in with his Mob, demanding that George reopen his mine – he spots George standing on the landing and heads upstairs after him, however unlike in the show that angry Mob isn’t just going to stand around politely while their leader has a little chat with the banker. No, they are going to start wrecking the place.
- Meanwhile up the stairs, when Ross starts yelling at George the knight of the realm has a full relapse – and begins to see Elizabeth standing behind Ross. Shaking her head and trembling in fear. Gripped in his delusion George leaps at Ross and they both go tumbling down the stairs.
- And that is the moment when Dwight arrives on the scene
- You see just like in the show, Dwight has been treating George for his lunacy – and while that has been happening the two men have been slowly growing closer, I’d even go so far as to say they’ve actually become friends. Thus, you can imagine how disturbed he was to find George’s door kicked in.
- And how truly angry he is finding George injured on the floor – arm broken and let’s say knocked out – with a seething Ross standing over him.
- This is the moment when Dwight really lays into Ross. You know that fight they almost had in the last episode, when Ross is behaving so terribly – but Dwight holds himself back so all they really have is a few tense words, because we can’t have a big fight between our main character and one of his oldest friends – our main character is just too likable for that. Now though he lets it all fly loose, how Ross is letting his worse faults control him. He has nearly ruined his relationship with Demelza, alienated all of his allies and continues to leave a wake of destruction in his righteous path. How many more lives must be ruined or damaged before Ross Poldark is satisfied? How many more Mothers have to die, how many more men have to be driven to madness by their own grief? And there it is, out in the open – Dwight slaps a hand to his lips but it’s too late. Ross knows now, he knows that George is mad, and more importantly the mob now know it too.
- Dwight has ruined his patient’s reputation.
- Ross leaves the Warleggan house, defeated and broken – and goes back home to think on the choices of his life.
Happens exactly like it does in the show.
Gone, Geoffrey Charles is so annoying he’s not even going to get a passing mention in my fixed season five.
Combined into Plot C, so George’s and Dwight’s character arch are now even more closely linked together.
Dwight and Caroline lost their baby daughter Sarah, to a congenital heart defect in season four. This will be at the forefront of their troubled marriage this year. Rather than taking a back seat to weird worries of infidelity like it did in the show. Oh, those will still be there – capitalised in the character of Kitty and her eventual retreat back to Jamaica just to escape the insanity of the two couples she’s taken refuge with. Poor Kitty, she really does get a raw deal in both versions of the show. This plotline will also capitalise on feelings of disconnection and resentment between Dwight and Caroline. Caroline feels like Dwight doesn’t respect her when he keeps things, like his PTSD or his patient’s names, from her. This is the reason that Caroline convinces herself that Dwight is cheating on her, either with Kitty and then when she is gone, with this mysterious client that he refuses to tell her anything about.
- In the background all this personal nonsense the eagle-eyed viewer may have spotted the men, in black cloaks following our protagonists. Of course, they were too busy raging and…going mad to notice themselves but that’s beside the point.
- When Ross arrives home, he is confronted by the leader of these strange men – turns out they were the secret service, taken an interest in Ross when he started poking around about his friend’s death, and their interest was sealed when they discovered that Ross’ new maid was a French spy.
- Don’t ask how they found out; it doesn’t really matter – they just know everything.
- They belive there might be an invasion from the French in this part of the country, and they coerce Ross into seducing Tress for their location.
- Then he has to go undercover with the French, and everything pretty much happens as it did in the show. Hey, I didn’t say I hated this storyline – I just thought it should be spread-out over more than the last two episodes.
- The Poldarks – Ross is sent off to be a spy in France, just like in the show. Really the only difference here is that he doesn’t have a giant smile plastered to his face to try and trick the audience into thinking this is a happy ending. It’s a bad ending and we’re gonna treat it like it’s a bad ending. Demelza does eventually forgive her husband, after she saves him from being discovered as a fraud by the French. And afterwards when he finally breaks down form the loss of both Elizabeth and Ned, she takes him in her arms and decides not to flee to Jamaica, but to stay and try and make their marriage work again. And then Ross is ordered away to France, leaving Demelza behind to try and keep the mine, and the family together.
- The Warleggans – George and Dwight’s friendship is damaged, as well as their doctor-patient trust. This is somewhat mended however when George saves Dwight and Ross from being stabbed by the French General. The Warleggans try and hush up the rumors of George’s madness, but eventually their only choice is to leave Cornwall for good.
- The Carnes – Same as the show.
- Dwight and Caroline – This plotline will end similarly to the show, with both of them realising they’ve still got a lot to work through after the death of their daughter, and that they may never be alright again; but at least acknowledging that and trying to work through it together. Although Dwight will not be going to France, because that is terrible.
If you’ve enjoyed this little reimaging of mine, don’t forget to check out the original post on the Wee Writing Lassie Blog, if you haven’t already. Also check me out on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Goodreads, Tumblr, and Pinterest. It’s a difficult time on the planet for everyone right now, so remember to laugh whenever you can and stay safe out there. Oh, and before I forget, have a very bonny day.
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