Poldark season 4, episode 5 recap: A bump in the night


On Poldark, Ross and George go head-to-head in Parliament. Back in Cornwall, an unexpected death has a dramatic impact on the lives of several residents.

In this week’s Poldark, Ross (Aidan Turner) finally starts to make some headway in Parliament to help the poor. However, he struggles to win over an old ally, and George (Jack Farthing) continues to be a thorn in his side.

Meanwhile, Dwight (Luke Norris) and Demelza (Eleanor Tomlinson) grow closer in Cornwall. Drake (Harry Richardson) asks Rosina (Amelia Clarkson) to marry him, but a subsequent murder changes everything. Here’s a look at what went down in the latest Poldark.

A long-awaited comeuppance

As I’ve previously mentioned, I was very much hoping for Whitworth (Christian Brassington) to meet a painful end. He finally did this week! Unfortunately, though, it did not prove to be the panacea I’d been hoping for.

It is Whitworth himself who proves to be his own undoing. After Arthur (Will Merrick) catches his wife Rowella (Esme Coy) and Whitworth in the act, he attempts to murder Whitworth in the woods with a candlestick Rowella had bought with Whitworth’s money.

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Whitworth, who is on horseback, fights back and avoids being bludgeoned to death. However, he falls over and gets caught in one of his stirrups. His spooked horse takes off, and Whitworth gets what he deserves.

Morwenna (Ellise Chappell) is finally rid of the “monster,” who resumed raping her earlier in the episode after taking away her leverage by hiring a nanny for their son, but the trauma remains. Even worse, Whitworth’s mother (Rebecca Front) vows to take over the care of her grandson, leaving Morwenna feeling as though she has no one left to live for — Drake included.

Naturally, Whitworth dies on the day that Drake is to wed Rosina, to whom he had already confessed having lingering feelings for Morwenna. Demelza, much to Sam’s (Tom York) chagrin, tells Drake what happened. A guilt-ridden Drake tells Rosina the wedding is off and then disappears.

He later shows up at Whitworth’s house, but Morwenna says she is “tainted” and never wants to see him again. It’s clear that she is trying to do what she thinks is best for Drake and also for herself because she knows their relationship can never be what it once was. Drake, however, doesn’t understand where she’s coming from and is heartbroken.

“One big love rectangle plus one, whatever that is”

Ok, so that isn’t a quote from the episode. It’s a classic Brooke Davis line from One Tree Hill, but it is very applicable to Poldark right now. In just one hour, the show establishes a growing connection between Demelza and Dwight as well as Ross and Caroline (Gabriella Wilde), and it calls back to the lingering connection between Ross and Elizabeth (Heida Reed).

As Cornwall’s leaders in Ross’ absence, Demelza and Dwight work together to try to keep everyone healthy amidst a food shortage and a fever. Additionally, Dwight understandably finds it painful to be home alone, so he spends most of his free time at Nampara with Demelza and the children.

Dwight and Demelza even discuss how Ross and Caroline have more in common, being from the upper class, than either of them do with their respective partner. They wonder aloud whether Ross and Caroline would have wed if they had met each other first. Dwight then asks whether he and Demelza might not have wed if they had met each other first.

I don’t see Demelza and Dwight ultimately ending up together, but I can’t say for certain that they won’t act on their feelings at all.

Ross and Caroline, on the other hand, are far from flirtatious. While they come from the same world and Ross attends her parties, their connection is actually rooted in their similar personalities. Ross understands that Caroline isn’t really trying to heal in London. She’s just trying to distract herself.

Ross talks with Caroline about the death of his own daughter and tells Caroline she needs to let herself feel the loss. She later confesses that she hadn’t cried at all after Sarah’s death but that, on Ross’ advice, she’s starting to now.

As for Ross and Elizabeth, they reconnect in London, unbeknownst to George, after Ross pays off a gambling debt for Geoffrey Charles (Louis Davison). Their chemistry and affection remain as evident as ever. George, meanwhile, learns of Ross and Elizabeth’s previous encounter at Trenwith (back in episode 3) and struggles to brush it off.

Ross vs. George

With grain prices rising, the poor of London and Cornwall are struggling to feed their families, despite being fully employed. They’re not making enough money to make ends meet. In Cornwall, malnourished children are dying from a fever. In London, workers are turning to poorhouses to eat.

Ross comes up with a controversial compromise. Grain merchants won’t have to lower their prices, but landowners will supplement their workers’ incomes, so the workers can afford to buy the grain to feed their families. George, of course, leads the opposition and nearly defeats Ross’ proposal until Lord Falmouth (James Wilby) steps in.

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Ross has not been voting in line with Falmouth’s wishes, so Falmouth isn’t his biggest fan of late. However, he ultimately supports Ross’ proposal in exchange for Ross’ reluctant support for his latest proposal. Falmouth wants to build a road, which will displace an entire town. At Ross’ insistence, he agrees to cover the cost of the relocations.

What did you think of this week’s Poldark? Do you have hope for Morwenna and Drake? Let us know in the comments section below.