Jericho returned tonight at a more sombre pace — but in lieu of explosions and murder, there was plenty of intrigue bubbling beneath the quarry.

Following last week's tragedy the small community tried to return to normal, while others dealt with the aftermath of the quarry disaster.

Here's what we learned from the second episode:

Life goes on

They say time is money — and the residents of Jericho had to move on swiftly from the disaster at the quarry this week. Annie took in new lodgers, including wannabe charmer Dagger (Tommy McDonnell), determined to raise the money to move back home. Thornhill went cap in hand to new boss Coates, and rather abruptly told Hatty to stop mourning and 'start earning' to make rent. As Annie demonstrated last week, widowed women don't have time to grieve (or in Annie's case, get over the betrayal of her financially useless husband) — they have to fend for themselves. Far removed from the threat of poverty, Blackwood talks about creating 'another Eden' — he's got no idea what life is like for those below in Jericho.

Mark Addy in ITV drama Jericho

Bamford's on a mission

Following his wonderfully melodramatic arrival in Jericho last week, Bamford wasted no time in starting his investigation into the quarry explosion, and his mission to track down Red Killeen. "I'm not here for your poor man's ale," he growled, waving money around in the Capstick and demanding answers. The silence was deafening — but it didn't seem to worry the Detective. But how long could he follow the assumption that Red had fled?

Coates takes control

Coates was also keen to get his show on the road. The scaffolding needs rebuilding, and work must continue — even if it means taking a risk and starting from the other side of the valley. Clarke Peters does a wonderful job of portraying Coates' calm, cool exterior — I'm pretty certain there's some serious scheming beneath it. He wasted no time in bellowing at the navvies to 'get back to work', and was equally keen to get rid of the Detective that was 'unsettling the men' (as we saw later). But what's his end goal?

DARREN MORFITT as Shay and TOMMY MCDONNELL as Dagger Wilkins.
DARREN MORFITT as Shay and TOMMY MCDONNELL as Dagger Wilkins.

Fightin' talk

What happens when navvies have no work? They fight, apparently. Cocky new kid Dagger didn't take to kindly to Hawker's 'pretty lass' jibes, throws a pie, and begins a wonderfully comical scrap, surrounded by cheering navvies. Of course Johnny 'Prince' Jackson, who seems to have replaced Skinny with Dagger without a second thought, jumps in and it takes new foreman Davey (who may not be as feckless as I predicted) to break it all up. In Jericho, men have to be men — and wounded pride can only be resolved by throwing punches, it seems.

George runs away

Poor George. Under more stress than anyone else in Jericho, the sensitive soul battled with his conscience, Annie asking Johnny to move out, and Bamford moving in, maintaining an impressive poker face before snapping and running back home. Annie seemed to make things worse, one moment telling Johnny it's better for George to forget, before telling him to come home and adding "you can't pretend the last few days haven't happened". Which is it, woman?! At the end of the day, he's still just a little boy who has lost his Dad, his home and had to fight for his life within the space of weeks. How long can he keep his dark secret?

JESSICA RAINE as Annie.

Hatty gets desperate

Oh, Hatty. From widow to prostitute in days. Even Lace Polly was concerned to see Jack's widow so desperate to make some 'quick money' — and heartbreaking to see her made up, vulnerable, perching at the end of the bed. When Thornhill appeared as her first customer, I'm not sure who was more mortified — and it was a relief when he confessed he couldn't go ahead. Thornhill made up for his crass demand for rent earlier in the episode by showing Hatty the kindness she needed. "I'll take this for rent but I won't lay a finger on you," he said. The men in Jericho may be prone to a quick scrap or too much ale, but as Thornhill said, they're not 'savages'. Thank goodness.

HANS MATHESON as Johnny and TOMMY MCDONNELL as Dagger Wilkins.
HANS MATHESON as Johnny and TOMMY MCDONNELL as Dagger Wilkins.

A battle of wits

The Whitsun celebrations are coming, and what's more festive than wrestling. Men were quick to sign up for Coate's scheme to pick out the strongest fighters in Jericho, and the next men on Bamford's suspect list. And of course Johnny and Dagger were quick to seize the chance to take on Hawker and Shay again.

And the wrestling match brought us even more face. Barrelling out of the ring, Dagger and Johnny spent half the 'match' being strangled by Hawker, before spilling into the village and destroying some poor sod's hut. They were hardly destined to win, considering the size of Hawker — but in a cheeky plot twist it turned out they'd bet against themselves and Johnny was able to give his cash to Annie. There had been a disturbing lack of simpering looks between them up until this point.

Dangerous alliances

Keeping your enemies close seems to be the Jericho way. Coats, after incepting a telegram intended for Bamford (and being caught doing it), managed to pay off the once-determined detective who suggested that Coates had paid red to cause the disaster that killed Jack and Skinny and cost Thornhill his job. He neither denied nor confirmed the theory, but said: "One bullet in the general's back can save the army." Problem is, it wasn't just Thornhill that suffered, was it? Coates ambitions could be bigger than Blackwood's — he certainly seems keen to get the viaduct built at any cost.

Speaking of Blackwood, the horror of his fiancee returning intensified this week when she casually revealed that the only way she can invest and become a business partner is if they get married. Blackwood's housekeeper Epiphany saw what went down the first time — how she 'broke' him — is he going to take the same risk again?

And it's battle of the redheads at the Capstick. Martha takes a job at the pub to help her mum, only to discover she's stuck behind the bar with Alma. Pushing her tray to the floor was delightfully petty, and the death stare-off that followed was brilliant. More catfights please.

Clarke Peters in ITV drama Jericho

Whitsun romance

The not-so-subtle tension bubbling between Johnny and Annie boiled over this week... into dancing. It sort of simmered, really. Away from the crowd, the couple danced in the starlight, moments after Johnny rolled out the classic line 'I thought I was never going to see you again'. After he basically thrust money at her and told her to leave. Sigh. Next week, hand holding and passing notes under the table.

False hope

Bamford's gone, everyone seems satisfied with the lie that Red disappeared abroad and for now, it seems, the heat is off Annie, Johnny and George. But let's face it, a drama like this won't conveniently dispose of a dark murder storyline by week two. The question is now, how will they become undone? Is Jack and Skinny's grave far enough away from the blast sites across the valley that the third corpe will remain undiscovered? When Coates and Blackwood discussed starting at the other side, it did make me wonder.

ITV drama Jericho

Questions for next week

  • Will Blackwood agree to have another go at marrying Isabella Lambton?
  • Will Annie let Johnny move back in now Bamford's disappeared?
  • Will Dagger make it through an episode without someone lamping him?
  • Again — what is Coates up to? Answers on a postcard.

Jericho continues on ITV next Thursday at 9pm.

READ MORE: ITV's Jericho: 10 things we learned from episode one

What did you make of this week's drama? Share your thoughts - email SamanthaRobinson@trinitymirror.com or get in touch via Facebook and Twitter.

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