Every week I make time to watch Poldark on catch-up. Every week. And this season has been really hard to keep quiet about (my parents don’t know about it). I’m hoping to avoid major spoilers by not naming names, but if you haven’t seen up to episode eight and want to, it may be an idea to stop reading now.
It’s been a busy eight episodes. From close escapes (which had to happen really) to the death of one of my favourite characters, and now this?! It may not be rape, but it came this close to crossing that line, and I don’t know when I was last so uncomfortable (is that word really strong enough?) with something which happened on my laptop screen. Does the fact that she kissed back after he had tossed her onto the bed and climbed on top of her make it right? Do neither of them care about loyalty or fidelity, or was it simply a case of not having ‘world enough and time’ (sorry! (I’m really not (English has been really awful for me!)))? I think it may have ruined that character for me. What honour can I see in him now, if he was so easily prepared to do that to a woman? Can I respect a character who has no respect for his vows, or for the trust of his wife, or for anything that truly matters? (The reason I keep repeating ‘character’ is because I very easily forget that he is, in fact, not a real person (it’s a very real problem)). To be honest, I’m not sure how I feel about this scene. In some ways it’s a brilliant way of shocking the general public and getting them to come back for more (Demelza had better bloody well murder him—that slap wasn’t enough). In other ways it only serves to highlight the thin line between consent and non-consent. We all know that he’ll get away from it scot free, even if she later changes her mind and says he forced her. We’ve grown to love this character—this dark and honest and brutal character—and we wouldn’t stand for him being punished. Even I, stubborn as I am, would secretly hope that he might once more get away with his crimes. He leads a charmed life—and when it comes to him, we’re all charmed as well.