The Buccaneers – Season 1 Episode 4 “Homecoming” Recap & Review

Homecoming

In episode 3 of The Buccaneers. Tracy and Patti St George gather themselves to welcome home their daughters. Theo and Seadown are also accompanying their fiances, which has made their parents quite excited. Patti has decided to throw a party in the Duke’s honour as well.

Dowager Queen and Guy spend some time together. In Theo’s absence, Guy is the old Queen’s one last hope of some good company. Sitting at the dinner table, she correctly points out that Guy “is in love.” He is taken aback by her observation, encouraging her to tell him how Guy’s mother always “grabbed at life.”

In his drunken state, Guy decides to pen his feelings in a letter. By the time his senses come back, the telegram has already been sent and there’s nothing he can do about it. The meeting between Patti and Nan is cold, primarily due to the latter’s veiled distance. Her looks dictate to Patti that somehow, Nan knows the truth. When she knocks at the girls’ door, Jinny asks Nan to pretend – at least until they get a quiet moment to themselves to discuss it at length.

However, Nan confronts Patti as soon as she enters the door. Very calmly, Patti asks Jinny to leave them alone and “enjoy herself” at the party. Nan is quite ruthless in admonishing Patti. Her tone is almost as if Patti mistreated her and didn’t adopt Nan as her own daughter. 

Mrs Elmsworth reveals to Mabel that since her sister Lizzy refuses to go to England, even she won’t be allowed to travel. Nan leaves the room declaring that she is telling Theo the truth. Pattie rushes after her but loses Nan in the crowd. When Tracy attempts to dance with her on the floor, she lashes out at him. Patti escorts him to a private room and tells her about the situation. They have a small argument about the growing cracks in the family.

Tracy finds Nan in his office rummaging through the drawers. Jinn had mentioned there were letters from Nan’s biological mother’s family. But she can’t find any. Tracy tries to explain how Nan was conceived – a couple of stolen looks here and there. But he falls short of properly remembering the young girl, much to Nan’s dismay. Lavinia walks in on Mabel making out with Lily, someone she had an entanglement with from before. 

Richard’s carefree attitude impresses Conchita. While talking to Governess Testvalley, Conchita proposes that Richard leave his family and title behind in England. However, Laura correctly points out that “An Englishman will never choose freedom over power.” Richard will have a tough decision to make when Conchita invariably asks him. One of the servants places Guy’s telegram on the table. Several of our protagonists pass by it but none of them pick it up…until Theo does. He is bamboozled and overwhelmed with everything he has just read.

In a tender moment, Patti expresses her endless love for Nan and how she has never been an outsider in the family. Patti loved her even more than Jinny and nothing can ever change that. Most importantly, Patti points out how Tracy’s lies have been ineffective against her will to soldier on and protect her girls. Nan has different feelings about it, though. When Theo sees Nan, they walk toward each other. Tracy tries to set them up for another “first dance.” However, Patti diverts attention from them and supports Nan’s decision to tell Theo the truth.

Theo grabs her and takes her to the coat room, where he kisses her passionately. He asks her if she “wants him,” and Nan nods. They once again kiss, solidifying their relationship. Nan keeps quiet for now and so does Theo. Seadown’s mind games begin once again as he calls Patti’s party hideous. He demands Jinny that her mother apologize to him for parading him in front of the entire city for his title. Jinny is conflicted but does what she thinks is right…which is to publically humiliate Patti.

Seadown intervenes like Prince Charming and pretends to fault Jinny for talking to Patti this way, evoking a shocked response from her. Things calm down as Nan shouts her support for her mother. Patti herself takes the observations on her chin and revels in her “gaudy and hideous” taste to lighten the mood of the party. As the party ends, Lizzy, who has been silent all night and observing Jinny from a distance, announces to Lavinia that she will go back to England. And take Mabel with her.

It is clear she cares about Jinny and wants to be by her side to protect her from Seadown. When Mabel tries to talk to Lavinia about the incident with Lily, she simply turns to walk away, refusing to acknowledge it. Patti tries to call it quits with Tracy being inspired by Nan’s rawness. However, he points out that she would be a nobody without him and Patti begrudgingly accepts the truth. It is also hinted that both Patti and Tracy know about Nan’s real mother and are yet again keeping a secret from her. 


The Episode Review

One thing that has progressed in the opposite direction of the graph is the development of the characters. We are on episode 4 now – essentially halfway – and they are starting to become unbearable. Nan started out as a smart, complex, and nuanced person who was still finding her feet in a world where she didn’t belong. However, her antics with Patti and her adoption are too much.

An oversimplification of the situation by her has really lost her brownie points. She has suddenly lost her touch of intellect and rationale to assess problems that aren’t too hard to peruse. I don’t understand why Conchita’s characterization is so bipolar. If she isn’t having fun, she is miserable and crying her heart out.

Lizzie has completely shut off after Seadown’s incident – and understandably so. Mabel’s arc is emerging and it will be fascinating to see how she proves Lavinia’s orthodox approach to be wrong in the coming episodes. Seadown and Richard are arguably the worst representatives of British nobility. They are so far off the mark that it seems the intention of the writers is to portray the aristocracy as backward and judgmental snobs.

One final note on the ultra-modern music in the period setting: it is not working for me. However, it has been marketed as a key differentiator for the show and it is regrettably irreversible. Christina Hendricks is the only positive from the episode along with Guy Remmers, who desperately needs more screen time. 

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You can read our full season 1 review of The Buccaneers here!
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