The many threads of Jericho are starting to come together now to create a bizarre sort of tapestry.
This week proved you should never cut a navvy off from his ale, the past is never truly behind us, and life isn't all 'lightning in a bottle'. Indeed.
Five episodes down, three to go.
Here's what we learned from episode five:
There's been a 'Blackwood folly'
As we pretty much predicted last week, Charles Blackwood's finances have gone belly up and the viaduct nearly went with it. His stubbornness has cost him dearly - and cost the navvies of Jericho even more. There's no wages, no immediate solution to the financial crisis and Charles' assurances that pay has just been delayed 'for a day or so' are fooling noone. The men go on strike, neither Coates nor Charles can take control and his docket system falls apart - meaning Jericho's little businesses suffer too. Charles couldn't have made a bigger mess of the project if he tried.
Johnny was torn
Which leads us to the other Blackwood, Johnny, who spent most of this episode trying to figure out which end of the valley he wanted live at. It seemed as if the men were accepting him again - but he was still sleeping on the moors, and the navvies were quick to cast him out as soon as they suspected he knew more than he was letting on about the Blackwood family budget. He rejected his wealth when he left Blackwood house the first time - and Annie made it clear that neither she or the men would be able to view him in the same way if he took control.
Coates was a slave
In an emotional moment in the episode, Coates broke down about his past in the US, and being mistaken for a runaway slave after fighting for the north in the Civil War. It's clear his horrible experiences resulting in him trusting noone - hence why he's been so deft in looking out for his own interests and removing those that pose a threat. Which doesn't bode well for Johnny - Coates thinks he's trying to be both a master and one of the men, something Coates can't abide.
George and Annie faced their demons
George and Annie also dealt with their past this week - namely the suicide of George's father and Annie's husband. Things seemed to have healed between Annie and George when he agreed to move home - and he even warmed to Johnny. But after the half-burned picture of his dad emerged, the temporary peace was shattered. Then it all came spilling out - his father suffered from depression, lost control of his finances, and was pushed to breaking point. Annie's strategy of never mentioning her late husband again was doing more harm than good - and I think George finally respects his mother again. He sounded like her father when he smirked, "So, Johnny eh?". Bless.
Never part men from their ale
A stressful for week for the Capsticks, as the navvies suddenly had to go cold turkey. As Joe pointed out: "We can't separate the men from their ale, there will be a riot!" And he wasn't wrong. It wasn't just a lack of ale that caused fury among the workers - as Johnny tried to explain to Charles, living wage packed to wage packed means a sudden delay in pay can have dire consequences. It's not a question of affording the pub, but affording food to eat and a place to sleep. Charles epitomised the heartless gentlemen when he hid in his carriage and rode away from the angry, potentially violent masses - it's easy to forget the people who depend on you when you live in a great house at the top of the valley.
The Blackwood brothers face off
With the whole town on the brink of collapse, Johnny takes Easter's advice, considers his father's legacy and issues Charles with an ultimatum. Stubborn and short-sighted, it took a lot for Charles to finally admit defeat - but considering Johnny had the power to take over the whole show, with or without his consent, made the decision a bit simpler. Isabelle looked horrified - but there was nothing else for Charles to do but accept the new partnership.
Alma plays away
I'm convinced the writers wrote a new way for us to dislike Alma into every episode to troll us. My god, she is irritating (and fantastically played by Natalie Gavin). This week, unhappy with being rooted to a 'bog-soaked moor' for the foreseeable, Alma spied a way out (or at least, something more exotic than Yorkshire) in Rory McCleod, who was visiting to determine quarry sites for the Blackwoods. Despite Lizzie warning him that she was spoken for, the two shared a brief kiss - and Alma looked like her head was going to explode. Poor Davy. This will end in tears (and I have a feeling they wont be hers).
'One night years ago' destroyed the Blackwoods
Ding ding ding, we were also right about Isabella and Johnny being more than just potential in-laws. It may have been just 'one night, years ago' but the scars remain - and while Johnny seems over it, Isabella certainly isn't. There was a hint that Johnny led her on, suggested they run away, then left without her - and her eyes betray her when she gazes at him - she still feels something for the Blackwood she isn't hitched too. Epiphany has got her number - will they get away with their secret or are the brothers doomed to hate each other once more?
Dagger leads the looters
A band of looters headed to Blackwood House - although it seemed Hawker (who else) was the only person with real malicious intent. Poor Dagger led the way, but it wasn't long before the whole thing collapsed in on itself. Easter came to the rescue again, and even Hawkers attempt the hold Isabella, then Johnny hostage failed miserably. Hawker's been nothing but trouble since the off - and doesn't seem to have the brains to back up his wicked ways.
Men paid, and punished
With the Blackwood brothers officially in business, wages were paid and things returned to normal (or as close to normal as they could). Hawker was told to leave, Dagger was pardoned, and Coates realised he now had two men to wrap around his little finger. As well as reconciling with George, Annie decided to let Johnny back under her roof. And thank goodness, after weeks of staring at each other, they finally gave into their not-so-secret desires. Annie seemed to forget the whole business about power changing him as soon as he unpacked his bag.
But of course this house of cards is due to fall down - and the quarry excavation will be the cause, it seems. Because of course , the cheapest way to excavate is through the grave site. How is Johnny going to prevent them digging up the bodies (and finding the third man in there) without spilling the beans? How long will it take before Coates starts playing one Blackwood against the other?
We'll be back next week after episode six.
Also, on Tuesday our Happy Valley series two blog will begin (we can't wait).
Watch the trailer here: