Lord G. is Dead! Long Live Lord G.!
Admin: The new series of The Paradise has begun airing on BBC in the UK, and we are truly devastated, crushed and mortified.
RF: And very, very annoyed! But also devastated, crushed, and mortified. 🙁
Admin: The new series starts a year after the events of last year’s finale. And in that year something terrible happened.
After the whole jilting at the altar thing, Lord Glendenning and Katherine left Belville Hall for Europe. Obviously they left because Katherine would be unable to cope so close to The Paradise, which is the source of her woe.
Tragically, it seems Lord Glendenning was unable to cope away from his home. He pined away and shuffled off his mortal coil. That’s right: Katherine is responsible for her father’s death. Why couldn’t he take a tip from The Pickwick Papers’ old Mr. Wardle and just send her abroad?
RF: An offscreen death!! I hate offscreen deaths! Not that I wanted to see Lord Glendenning die – far from it! – but it seems an incredibly cheap way to go for such a vibrant character. We were just barely getting to know him during series 1 and then this! Luckily, we were forewarned of his fate because fearless Admin tracked down some spoilers. I’m very glad she did because if I’d watched S02E01 of “The Paradise” cold, without knowing what was coming, I’d be even more ticked off than I am now. And I’m very ticked off now! 🙁
Admin: Katherine is being a little vague on details, though. It is near impossible to believe that someone as robust and solid as our Lord G. would just pine away like a lonely dog. What an unsatisfying end to a wonderful life! Maybe he faked his death, leaped into the Channel, and swam back to Blighty where he could start afresh as someone else!
RF: Katherine’s being vague on the details is incredibly annoying as well and nor, may I say, does she seem to be especially sad about his death. We get a couple of not-very-sincere-sounding references to her being “grief-stricken”, but that’s about it. As a matter of fact, I was surprised to see her put off mourning the day after she arrived back home, whereas according to Victorian custom, she’d normally be expected to wear it for at least six months to a year. I likewise found her explanation that being away from Belville Hall “took its toll” on Lord G. to be completely unsatisfying. He was more than intelligent enough to return home if that’s what he really wanted! If she knew he was feeling ill, why didn’t she suggest they go home right away?
Admin: His presence in The Paradise will be sorely missed. I mean there are so many things to miss about the guy. His bluff persona, his cunning, his vivacity are but a few qualities we’ll be pining for ourselves. Not to mention never seeing that delicious Victorian Godfather persona again. And there are more….
Ten Things We’ll Miss Most About Lord Glendenning:
Those breakfast scenes: (Admin) Lord G. seemed to start his mornings with a newspaper, plenty of eggs, buttered toast and huge mugs of tea. Breakfasts served as a setting for many of his scenes and seemed to be a recurring theme with his character. Probably that is when he established his agenda for the day. But, there will be no more agendas for Lord Glendenning.
RF: And don’t forget wedding breakfasts, which are even better than regular breakfasts! 😀 God help the poor maid who couldn’t make toast properly…
Riding outfits and Boooooots!: (RF) I admit it – I loved catching a glimpse of Lord G. in his riding outfits, especially when we could see those gorgeous riding boots. We only saw him out on horseback once, which was a real shame, since he spent enough time just coming in from rides that it seemed to be a very important pastime to him. And he looked truly gorgeous in his riding coat, vest, and immaculately tied cravats, complete with pin!
Admin: It was such a beautiful horse. I’d have loved to know a bit about him. What was his name? I bet Lord G. doted on him!
Toppers & canes: He was a stylish man. We saw several canes in his hallway. I kind of wish he’d thrashed Sam with one back in episode 2 (no!! not really – poor, innocent Sam had done absolutely no wrong). It would have been so Victorian of him! He also had a vast hat collection, but the best were his toppers. He usually chose nice chocolaty brown ones that really brought out his coloring.
Waistcoats, cravats, and frockcoats, oh my: (RF) Lord G. had some of the most exquisite taste in clothing we’ve ever seen, and had a great eye for waistcoats and frockcoats that were very flattering on him. Half the fun in watching “The Paradise” was in seeing what waistcoat or frockcoat he’d chosen for that day, and how they were mixed and matched for colour (mostly earth tones – as I said, very flattering). We never saw a valet, so we’ll just presume that it was all of Lord G’s choosing.
Admin: That photo of him in the checked waistcoat and brown cravat shows how well brown flatters his complexion. It shall all be missed!
The divided mustache: (Admin) It was cool – like a cat’s whiskers!
Silky sideburns: (RF) Very flattering and suited him extremely well. 🙂 He was always impeccably groomed.
Growled warnings: (Admin) Actually, we didn’t get quite as many of them as we’d have liked. As a general rule he was shockingly laid back. But, when he did get his dander up, he’d let any uppity so-and-so know who was boss. Sam, Katherine and Moray and Dudley (two-fer) were all warned at one point or another. Even poor Peter Adler was growled at to keep playing croquet when Katherine started flaking on him.
RF: I think he felt more sorry for Adler at that point than anything else because he knew Katherine was jerking him around. That seemed to be as much a growl at Katherine as it was at Adler. It looked like Sam was so genuinely terrified by Lord G’s temper that he ran all the way from Belville Hall to the Paradise, without stopping! Woe betide anyone who didn’t heed the warning growl…
Admin: Oh, he was disgusted with Katherine’s behavior. She really knows how to ruin a garden party.
His intellect and business acumen: (RF) This is another quality we didn’t get to see very much, but it was very clear from listening to Lord G. talk that very little got past him. He had a sharp mind and keen awareness of current events, politics, finance, and economics, and the personalities of those involved in his day-to-day business. He seemed to understand his potential allies and enemies very well indeed. It would have been very interesting to see more of this side of him, rather than his role being merely that of a reflection and enhancement of Katherine.
That fatherly warm side: (Admin) Katherine didn’t know how lucky she was. We also saw that side of him show itself when her friend Jocelin showed up to cause trouble. But, Lord G. protected her and took care of everything in the end. He told Moray she was like a daughter to him; he certainly seemed like a father to her. I am gravely disappointed that we won’t get to see Lord G. be a grandfather to poor, wan Flora.
RF: I agree, Lord G. was indeed very protective of Jocelin, and was probably a better father to her than her own. He seemed to genuinely care about her a great deal, even if he didn’t really have enough information to understand everything about what was going on with her. It would have been wonderful to see him have some scenes with Flora. We saw some of his struggle at being left to raise Katherine as a single parent (he seems to have been unusually involved in his daughter’s life, as a Victorian father) when he described his failings as a parent to Moray, and his regrets. He tried very hard to steer Katherine in the right direction, and it appeared in S02E01 that she may have finally realized he was right all along.
His utter pleasure at putting one over on Moray: (RF) One of Lord G’s best moments is one we’ve immortalized before, where he successfully pulled off the deke of the century, acquiring the fee simple out from under Moray’s nose just when Moray thought that he’d have access to Lord G’s assets with few (if any) restrictions. This is the Lord G. we really wish we’d seen a lot more of, since it took an entire eight episodes for him to get to this point. What made it even better was that Lord G. was willing to go for the long con, setting up Moray perfectly by first apologizing for all that talk of “ruining” him, and then goading Moray to action by spreading rumours of the fictional “Conrad Jessup” buying up Tollgate Street properties before moving in for the kill. This is the wily banker we wanted to see, with more than a hint of the ruthlessness that kept him on top.
Admin: “I’ll ruin you!” Ha-ha, happy days. 🙂
The Lord G. We’d Like to See, or What Could He Be Doing Now?
RF: Well… I think if Lord G. is dead – and you can call me a denialist if you like, because I prefer to think that he isn’t – one of the first things he’d do would be to haunt the bejeezus out of Belville Hall, his new son-in-law, the execrable Tom Weston (Weston made a terrible first impression on me and it only proceeded to get worse) as well as the Paradise and Moray, just on general principle. I don’t think there’s any way he’d have approved of Katherine marrying Weston, especially if his idea of the perfect husband for her was Peter Adler.
RF: So what would a Lord G. haunting look like? I think Katherine and Weston would find warm, perfectly toasted toast mysteriously appearing on the breakfast table, accompanied by a large cup of hot tea… Perhaps a brandy glass left sitting with just the dregs when no one’s been in a room… Or hear the rustling of newspapers in the morning when no one else is around. Or possibly a cigar left burning in an ashtray (we never saw Lord G. smoking, but I suspect he enjoyed his cigars).
Admin: Oh, he had to have loved his cigars alright. At any rate, his ghost will have to be there to watch over Katherine (and Flora, he’d have loved her; I’m sure) and keep Weston in line. No way could he be stuck haunting some unfamiliar place on the continent.
RF: No, especially if he’d have to give up toast for poncey croissants. 😉
RF: But let’s say… that instead of shuffling off the mortal coil in the undistinguished and rather feeble way that Katherine seems to imply, that Lord G. was actually being far more proactive. Maybe he finally had enough of her nonsense and decided that the only way he could escape would be to do something drastic, like… oh, say… fake his own death. Just think, he could plunge off a Venetian bridge into a canal and be mysteriously “lost”, perhaps with a confederate waiting to help him. Lord G. is more than intelligent enough to have planned everything months in advance, down to new identity papers, clothing, money, transportation, and anything else he’d need! He could start a new life (probably with a huge nest egg he set aside just for this purpose) and leave all those crazies behind with their fee simple and department store.
Admin: I’m not going to fully commit to him being dead either. He probably paid off some dipso doctor to tell Katherine he was dead. He’s clever enough for a fresh identity and would enjoy all the freedom it would bring! And,hey, the brilliant thing about soaps, even Victorian ones, is that the dead can suddenly un-die! If only The Paradise were inspired by the works of Mrs. Braddon instead of Zola!
RF: What I’d really like to see, and wish that we could have seen in “The Paradise”, would be some sort of romance for Lord G. He was devoted to Katherine and she took up most of his energy, time, and attention, but it would have been wonderful to see him find love again after being a widower for so long. With no banking commitments and an entirely new life, Lord G. could set about to re-create himself in some new and amazing ways – perhaps even… starting a new family? Maybe things would turn out a little better this time around.
Admin: Ahhhh, some romance for Lord G. would have been excellent. I was certainly hoping for such a storyline. So, we’ll just pretend he’s alive and well, enjoying a new life with someone a lot less demanding than Katherine. And hopefully Katherine is wondering where on earth his favorite horse could have gotten off to! 😉
Admin: So, this is probably it for The Paradise coverage as far as Series 2 goes, barring some Mrs. Braddon-esque miracle. But, no matter what, we’ll always have Series 1 to fall back on and enjoy. Mr. Malahide brought Lord Glendenning to life for us, so we won’t let that sly banker go just yet.