“I know we had all night, but all I can think of is when are we gonna kiss again?”
In a fruitless bid to distract us from last week’s loss of Henri, this week’s Mr Selfridge throws three – THREE – secret, doomed romances at us, each inducing varying degrees of discomfort in the confused, distressed viewer who has watched the show this long for Gregory Fitoussi and, now he’s gone, is kind of stuck with it.
With no Leclairs around to awwww at, then, there may be no shortage of snogging on-screen but there’s a distinct lack of shipping at the House of Cregg.
Mr S’s affair with Miss Webb would be rendered embarrassing enough by Mr S’s wildly enthusiastic participation – remember the heady days of Ellen Love? Best not – but that opening line of his takes proceedings into a whole new realm of mortification. The sooner Miss Webb goes the same way Miss Love did, the better.
If Mr S’s love life is embarrassing, however, Angry Victor’s is just unpleasant. That his half-naked encounter at the club with Violette is cut short by a police raid on trumped-up charges may be unfair to both Mr Colleano and Miss Selfridge, but it’s also an act of mercy for at least one member of the audience who really did not want to see any more. Memo to Victor: Please do not dally with debutantes in your office. Anyone might walk in. And some of us were eating.
Of course, this is advice which S (Club) Junior and his soul patch might also do well to heed, now that he’s kissing Miss Calthorpe in stock rooms and such. Not entirely appropriate behaviour for Store Deputy Manager, one might think, but the starry-eyed Miss Calthorpe convinces S (Club) Junior to “apply” for the post anyway – the “application” process consisting of marching into Papa’s office and demanding the job – and he gets it, immediately, which means we’re not only robbed of the chance to see Miss Mardle or Mr Crabb running things (so much for the job “going on merit”, eh, Mr S?) but we’re also going to see a lot more of S (Club) Junior.
Neither Violette nor I are very pleased about this.
While Miss Mardle is unsuccessful on the promotion front, however, a promising new career as a PI (or a post at Miss Blenkinsopp’s Information Bureau!) may await her, uncovering as she does Mrs Grove’s tragic secret – which has something of the doomed romance about it as well – by giving her what appears to the 1919 version of truth serum, cunningly disguised as, um, a cake in a tin.
Poor Mrs Grove. Her marriage may never actually have been a romance, but it was always doomed too. And it’s beginning to look like the Edwards are similarly cursed, as Kitty’s idiot sister makes a bad situation infinitely worse and exposes her blameless sister to a mercenary and misogynist press. It’s worth noting that Amy Beth Hayes is doing excellent work as Kitty at the moment, and the show itself is far better when it’s looking sensitively and intelligent at post-war changes in gender politics in this way – even the Lord Loxley sub-plot is interesting in that context – and as it has in general over the past few weeks, than it is when one of the male leads is dutifully kissing yet another ingenue.