Every season, the Drama After Dark team gathers ‘round the conference room table to watch the latest and greatest in British dramas. This summer, we’re incredibly excited to bring you coverage of MASTERPIECE’s new show Beecham House. Beecham is a delight: sensual and sumptuous, it features an attractive and diverse cast, a historical setting that encourages reflection, and absolutely to-die-for costumes. I’m here to recap the season as it happens just in case you, dear reader, miss an episode and haven’t yet been able to catch up on WGBH Passport.
I’m not going to lie to you all: I’m SUPER bummed that we've arrived at the season finale for Beecham House. Where else will I get himbo brothers on a road trip? Where else will I find such actually fun "downstairs" hijinks, and when will Bindu get the screentime she so richly deserves? Whither the satisfaction of seeing Ozzy learn how to be a baller at Begum Samru's knee? But I guess we mustn’t dwell, at least not until we find out what happens in this episode. On with the show!
Jail sure isn’t looking fun for our buddy JB. A few days pass while Prince Akbar tries to talk his mom into NOT throwing JB under the bus.
Prince Akbar: This is a mistake: he should be our ally, not our scapegoat. JB’s holding up his end of the bargain — he could have sold me out to dad, but he didn’t, because he supports us!
Empress: You think he cares more about India’s future than his own life? LOL, doubt it.
Prince Akbar: He does though! Please let me talk to dad.
Empress: Look, I love a chess metaphor just as much as your dad, so let me just say that JB is a pawn, and we might need to sacrifice him to keep the family safe. If you tell your father what happened, he’ll banish you, and as your mom AND your political better, I say no.
At Murad Beg’s house, Ozzy makes the case for JB. Sure, the facts are on her side, but let’s not forget that they’re still trying to convince a literal EMPEROR. Murad Beg isn’t really feeling standing up to someone that powerful, and TBH, I get it. Especially since JB hasn’t been that good of a neighbor; he mostly comes over to hit on the au pair!
Murad Beg: Look, why doesn’t JB just tell the Emperor what happened?
Ozzy: Because he’s not a tattletale; he isn’t going to get the Prince in trouble!
Murad Beg: Well, I wish I could help, but I’m not about to mess up my relationship with the royal family.
Ozzy: Ok, I mean I'm not mad, but I'm disappointed in you. Bye.
Back at Beecham House, Mom Beecham is, as I predicted, not handling her detox well. She calls out for PTF Violet, who she thinks is the only person who can help. Unfortunately, PTF Violet is probably off making out with Snakey Sideburns somewhere, but Bindu IS around, and knows what to do. She massages Mom Beecham’s pressure points and helps talk her down from what looks like a pretty severe panic attack. It works, and Mom Beecham is actually pleasant after, thanking Bindu and using her actual name. Progress! I'm still not forgiving her for her behaviour in literally every other episode, but:
At the palace, Murad Beg actually turns up to try and help JB. He speaks with the Empress, telling her he thinks JB is innocent and that a mistake has been made. Unfortunately, it’s clear that no one on Team Beecham knows that the Empress is also involved in the scheme; Murad Beg tells her that the Beecham family have implicated Prince Akbar internally. The Empress shuts him down, but now she knows that they have a leak: JB might not tell the Emperor, but who’s to say someone else won’t? Clearly she’s underestimating Team Beecham’s reliance on backchanneling; back at the house, Ozzy is preparing to set up a meeting with the Empress herself, not the Emperor.
Ozzy: And speaking of schemes, any idea where Snakey Sideburns is this morning?
Brother Beecham: No clue. He’s not at the house, but he’s extremely desperate. Don't worry, we won’t give up without a fight.
Ozzy: Welp, I really hope the Empress will help. She’s cool, she won’t want an innocent man punished!
At the palace, Ozzy makes her case, unaware that her attempt at checkers is being met by a chess master.
Empress: UGH, WTF: why is everyone talking about this JB guy?
Ozzy: Because he’s the title character of the show? Oh and also because he’s a good guy, and he has a baby at home, and he’s innocent!
Empress: But the evidence all points to him!
Ozzy: I know, but I’m going to lightly allude to the fact that I know your son was involved without actually saying it!
Empress: Interesting, perhaps you are a worthy opponent. Let’s play: everyone’s saying JB was gonna sell that diamond to raise money for The Company.
Ozzy: Well then everyone is wrong; he hates those guys so much he might as well have “I hate the British East India Company” tattooed on his butt.
Empress: Oh, so you love him?
Ozzy: I respect him for being so honorable!
Empress: Answer the question, dude.
Ozzy: UGH fine. Yes, ok?
Empress: And you’re cool with the baby thing?
Ozzy: There’s a whole backstory you’re not allowed to know about, so I’m just gonna feed you a platitude about how all children are gifts, even though YOUR kid is currently causing all my problems. Look, you have influence, but I also think JB could be helpful to you. Like I keep saying, he’s a good person, and he’d die for his son. I think he’d also die for a cause he cares about. He’s innocent, and I don’t think he should have to die to protect someone else’s secret. Thanks for your time!
Empress: Ugh, fine — someone get my son!
Over at the fort jail, Castillon stops by to visit JB and offer him a nice gloat in these trying times.
Castillon: Ready to talk yet?
JB: So, i’ve been thinking: how did you know I had the diamond? And about the robot I got the Empress?
Castillon: I don’t know how you do things in England, my guy, but in France the jailer does the interrogating. You can have a visitor.
Castillon: Oh lol, no, as far as I know she's abandoned you. Bring ‘em in, boys!
Obviously, we all know where this is going: evil Snakey Sideburns is here to keep up his friendship charade. He pretends to be annoyed at Castillon for the beatdown last episode, and offers him a fair fight. TBH, I don’t have any reason to believe that ol’ Snakey Sideburns has any fighting skills, so I’d be into tihs, if only because I think he deserves a good smack.
Castilon leaves the two former bros alone.
JB: How’s everyone doing?
Snakey Sideburns: Well, they’re praying! We’re all doing our best to get you out.
JB: Aw, thanks!
Snakey Sideburns: I might be able to negotiate with Castillon to get you out of here.
JB: HA, well I might have recently been betrayed by someone I thought was a friend, but you’re even more shortsighted than ME if you think you can make a deal with Castillon!
Snakey Sideburns: There’s a way, but you’re not gonna like it — I can get him to put you in my custody if I promise to take you to England, with a signed letter saying that you’ll never return. You have to know you’re in deep sh*t. Unless you come with me, I think they’re gonna let you die in prison.
JB: Sideburns. Burnsy. Buddy. What in the HELL will I do in England.
Snakey Sideburns: Oh, so you want me to prey on your honor? You can see justice done, my dude! There’s new evidence in that Hastings case — if you testify we can get him!
JB, aware of how the “justice system” works: Sideburns, they could put him on trial a hundred times and he will never be found guilty, because the government is completely corrupt AND run by The Company.
Snakey Sideburns, knows how to twist the knife: We can only make things better here in India if we expose The Company’s atrocities in court! It will take The Company out AND we’ll get rich! This is my only chance to restore my reputation, and your only chance to take out The Company. It’s the right thing to do!
JB: Ugh, fine. Try to make this deal — if he agrees, I’ll give you my answer.
Snakey Sideburns: NICE! I’m wilfullying ignoring the ambiguity of your last statement. Take me to Castillon, guards!
At Beecham house, Bindu leads the household staff in prayer. Mom Beecham happens to be wandering by, and everyone stops.
Bindu: We’re praying for JB, join us! Baadal, get her a chair. Mom Beecham, take of your shoes and get in here.
Mom Beecham: Uh, ok?
It turns out that giving a crap about other people and expressing that through prayer really can be a universal language. Mom Beecham? Continuing to be a non-jerk?
In the nursery, Ram Lal and Maya have a confab; August has a fever and isn’t sleeping well. Ram Lal is pretty willing to blame that on the fact that the whole household is in disarray, but Maya explains that the August hasn’t slept well since Chanchal left. Ram Lal, being the actual Man of Action around these parts, immediately runs off to get her back. His plan? Gather Baadal and Brother Beecham, and shove them into a mutual shame spiral.
Ram Lal: Bro Beecham, this adorable baby needs Chanchal back. YOU need to talk to her.
Brother Beecham: I totally would, but I don’t know where she is!
Ram Lal: Well, Baadal knows, but he’s not telling!
Brother Beecham: Come on dude, why are you doing this?
Baadal: You 100% know why, don’t make me say it.
Brother Beecham: Look, I know we’re not friends, and probably won’t be, but do it for the kid!
Ram Lal: You have a duty to tell us!
Baadal: Uh, no I don’t: I’m walking away from this conversation.
Ram Lal: Well, guess we’re gonna follow him.
Man, I really thought Baadal would be sneakier than this. In his haste to warn Chanchal that Ram Lal and Brother Beecham so she can hide if she doesn't want to go back, he leads the guys right to her. It’s… awkward. Everyone stares everyone else down.
Luckily for us, we get to escape the weird tension of a love triangle plus Ram Lal to hit up a carriage ride with Chandrika, her dad, and his incredible moustache. Where are they? Oh, they’re casually dropping in on the Emperor! Didn’t think we’d end up playing the royal baby card, but needs must, I guess? Across the street, Ozzy and Rosh watch as Chandrika and her dad approach the emperor to great fanfare. They’re far enough away that they can’t immediately tell they know one of the guests, but CAN tell that whoever it is must be a big deal. Ozzy, who apparently has zero manners, interrupts Vijay’s intoning of titles to be like “Chandrika?” She obviously gets ignored, but can’t take a hint, and tries to run after the family into the palace. The guards stop her at first, but after a quick family consult, she gets the nod.
Ozzy: Chandrika! John is in huge trouble.
Chandrika: Yeah dude, I know, I was actually around when he was arrested, not running off to Meerut or wherever. Why do you think I brought my rich and powerful dad back with me?
Ozzy: Well, tell your dad we found out JB is protecting someone who asked him to sell the diamond to raise a standing army!
Vijay, just noticed the intruder: Excuse me, what are you doing here, random peasant? This is a royals-only party!
Chandrika: Ozzy, who are we talking about?
Ozzy: While you’re in there, get a look at how hot Prince Akbar is these days!
Vijay: Women are so weird. Go away dude!
Back at the house, Mom Beecham catches PTF Violet sneaking in.
Mom Beecham: I needed you earlier, where were you?
PTF Violet: I was shopping! Just getting presents for family!
Right on cue, some of the household staff walk through with a whole bunch of stuff from the store. Picture Julia Roberts holding all the bags in Pretty Woman and add a couple; it's that much stuff.
Mom Beecham: What’s your deal, are you going home?
PTF Violet: Sideburns asked me to keep it quiet, but yeah, he said I can join him in London. Be happy for me, I’m excited! I know you’re worried about your kid, but damn!
Mom Beecham: Vi, I don’t know how to tell you this, but Brother Beecham and Ozzy think Sideburns is shady as hell.
PTF Violet: Brother Beecham is just jealous! Don’t make fun of Sideburns, he loves me for me! Now please excuse me while I storm off!
At the palace, the Emperor doesn’t waste any time.
Emperor Badass: Why do YOU care about everyone’s favorite actually not very bad boy, JB?
Papa Maharaja: Oh, that’s an easy one; he saved my life! And now I’m here to return the favor. I’ve learned that he has a special relationship with a certain young fella here in the palace.
Emperor Badass: Are you talking about my son?
Papa Maharaja: YUP
Emperor Badass thinks about that for a second and then sends all the servants out of the room. Prince Akbar quietly panics.
Papa Maharaja: Here’s what I think happened: your son is just patriotic, and he made a bad call while trying to do the right thing. He took the diamond, and gave it to JB to sell in the hopes of hiring an army to defend Kannauj. I bet the prince knew you didn’t have a lot of cash in hand; we’re all in the same boat what with the constant infighting and attempting to keep out these colonizers. Maybe we’re just here to watch as our society gets destroyed, and we’ll be forgotten to history. But if that happens, let’s at least go down fighting.
Emperor Badass: Well, that’s a huge mood, my friend. I really don’t want my son to be the last Mughal Emperor.
Papa Maharaja: Then help him!
Emperor Badass: Pardon my idiom remix, but heavy is the head who wears the Emperor’s turban, am I right?
Papa Maharaja: Yeah; unburden yourself.
Prince Akbar: I’m sorry dad; forgive me?
Emperor Badass: Yes.
Meanwhile, JB is still kicking it in his cell when Snakey Sideburns returns. Unsurprisingly, he’s here to say that Castillon has agreed with the “let’s all go back to England” plan.
JB: Wow, what a surprise that I never could have predicted! How unlikely!
Snakey Sideburns: Yeah, I KNOW; you won’t believe how hard it was to convince him!
JB: You’re right, I don’t believe you... SNAKE! I know you sold me out re: the diamond, and the automaton.
Snakey Sideburns: It could have been so many other people!
JB: First of all, not really — not sure if you noticed this, but aside from my massive household staff, I’m KIND of a loner! And second of all, you have the most to gain! And you followed my mom here? Creepy, dude. Very creepy. You must have been watching her for months!
Snakey Sideburns: Prepare to be even more upset; I’ve been stalking her for two years!
Did you want this meeting to get more tense? Good news, Castillon is here!
Castillon: Bad news, Sideburns. JB isn’t going with you, and before you complain, know that I’m just as, nay, even more furious than you are! Prince Akbar declared him innocent and set him free. JB, I have to admit I misjudged you. We’ve been on the same side all along.
JB: Well, I guess there’s a first time for everything!
Castillon: Look, don’t be a sore loser. You were an admirable schemer, but it’s over!
Well, unfortunately for the newest recruit to Team Beecham, Snakey Sideburns isn’t about to take this lying down. He’s got a knife, and he’s not afraid to use it. He stabs Castillon a couple of times, then knocks him out. Folks, bad news: this isn’t a cute flesh wound, Sideburns got him in the gut.
JB: WHAT THE HECK, DUDE? What have you done?
Sideburns: Maybe don’t ask questions of the guy holding the gun! I just stabbed him, I’ve got nothing to lose! Unlock your chains and come along all nice and quiet; we’re on a boat back to England in a couple of hours. But don’t worry, I wasn’t kidding about the money waiting for you at home!
JB: Money? I don’t care about that! How exactly were you planning to make me testify when we get back there?
Sideburns: Well, if you don’t, you’ll never see your family again!
Bad move, Sideburns: nothing enrages a papa bear more than a threat to his family! JB decides to go out swinging. He also, helpfully, screams for help. Unfortunately, the guards weren’t around for the whole “JB is innocent” convo earlier, and Castillon is a little too STABBED to assist, so they restrain JB while Snakey Sideburns escapes with a swirl of his coat.
Well, it looks like Chanchal decided to head back to Beecham House after all. She sits outside and pouts while Bindu makes a snack. Mom Beecham continues her streak of improvement, and comes out to sit with them, even waving off Baadal’s offer of a stool.
Bindu: Look, I’m just gonna dive right into awkward small talk lake and get it all out in the open. The baby is going to be a girl!
Mom Beecham: How do you know?
Bindu: Specific pregnancy cravings! You can go ahead and fire off a Little Girl Beecham gender reveal post on your Instagram, that's a Bindu guarantee!
Baadal: Why am I always here when you guys talk about how Chanchal is into Brother Beecham instead of me?
Chanchal: When JB gets back I’m asking to leave.
Baadal: You can’t do that, where will you go?
Bindu: Uh, that’s a no-go: your mom will not be ok with this. You would shame her: an unmarried girl is bad enough.
Chanchal: Look, I might be shamed but I did this for love! Why am I the only one who’s suffering, he was just as involved in this!
Mom Beecham, surprisingly feminist: You’re right, and trust me, he WILL suffer if he doesn’t do the honorable thing. Don’t leave though — your kid is part of the family, and this is our home! Anyway, that was enough being pleasant for one day, so I'm gonna head out!
Baadal: Chanchal, you’re not cursed. And I’m here for you, you know that right?
Chanchal: Baadal, you’re the best friend ever…
Baadal: Uh, what are you not getting? I’m not a friend. I’d marry you — you don't have to suffer alone.
You know what? I'm still not feeling Brother Beecham as a partner or coparent; this seems worth considering. The sexual politics around unwed mothers are still crummy in present times; marrying a good friend to avoid ostracism in 1795 isn’t the worst idea for Chanchal. I kind of think Baadal deserves more though!
At the palace, JB makes an entrance to talk to Prince Akbar, who’s really rocking the throne. JB also notices that Papa Maharaja is still hanging out, but since everyone is still trying to keep August a secret, they just bro nod at each other.
JB: So, how’s Castillon doing?
Akbar: He’s going to live, thanks to you. He’s with the doctors now.
Emperor Badass: Your loyalty to this family is appreciated, JB. I need to trust my son to look to the future, if we’re going to have one.
Akbar: Yeah, we better get to work. Today we start working to get rid of our oppressors. It’s not going to be easy, or fast, but one day we WILL win. JB, if you’re still down, I hope you’ll join us. We would like you to use your trading license to sell this diamond, on the up and up this time, so we can build a kickass army to take out our enemies.
JB: Your Highness, I would be honored.
Upstairs, the Emperss and Begum Samru talk. The Empress is now fully convinced that JB is good, but Begum Samru is still not sure of him.
Back at the house, JB makes his triumphant return. Everyone is super jazzed to see him; he and Ram Lal hug it out, he claps Baadal on the back, and he heads inside to check in with the ladies. Mom Beecham is overjoyed, and, classic mom move, comments immediately that he’s gotten too skinny. The Brothers Beecham also embrace, fisticuffs forgotten. PTF Violet, who still hasn’t gotten the memo re: Sideburns’ shadines, asks where her BF is. Before JB can answer, Bindu and Chanchal roll up to say they’re also glad JB is back, and that August missed him. JB is glad to see them all, but of course, is pretty much only interested in talking to one person… Ozzy. Where is she?
Chandrika, appearing out of nowhere with August: Ozzy saved the day, JB.
JB: You saw her?
Chandrika: Yep, at the palace. She told me the situation with Prince Akbar AND she talked to the Empress for ya.
JB: Well that’s all great. Now hand over that baby, I haven’t mushed his wee cheeks in an age, and half of the audience is just tuning in to see me holding his tiny personage.
August: Father, this is undignified. I may yet be a baby, but one day I too will be a man; treat me with the respect of one who will one day be your equal.
Later that night, JB rides over to Murad beg’s house to play a boom box outside Ozzy’s window. He doesn’t really need to: she’s very excited to see him.
JB: I got out thanks to you; let’s make out!
Yes, it’s very romantic to make out in a candlelit courtyard at night! And they’re both cute! I wish I was more invested in this couple; it might just be that they're both too Lawful Good? Regardless, don't get too comfy, sportsfans: the episode isn’t over yet.
The next morning, PTF Violet unpacks her betrayal at the hands of Snakey Sideburns with her girls (i.e. Brother Beecham and Mom Beecham). It’s kind of a weird squad, but they seem pretty supportive; she could do worse.
Mom Beecham: I’m so sorry this happened: he tricked us all. You'll find someone better, I’m sure of it.
PTF Violet: He only cared about my father’s business, not about me at all. That’s why I’m upset. And now I have to go back to England a SPINSTER.
Brother Beecham: Girl, I’ve known you since we were kids. There’s no way someone as great as you is going to end up alone, and I am going to make sure to find you the husband you deserve.
How he plans to do this when his entire network is dissolute army guys who fight on the side of evil, I’m not sure, but:
Outside, JB and Chandrika wait to greet Papa Maharaja, who hilariously calls the giant mansion that is Beecham House a "charming bungalow" (new title for season 2, anyone?) JB makes introductions. Papa Maharaja is impressed with Brother Beecham’s bravery (foolishness?) sneaking into jail to visit JB. Everyone is impressed by the fact that Papa Maharaja saved JB’s life. Mom Beecham and Papa Maharaja compliment each other’s kids (aw) and EVERYONE compliments August, as is his due.
August: Thank you for the kind words. Grandfather, well met: it warms my heart to be reunited at last.
Papa Maharaja: You’ve done a good job with him, JB: my daughter would be pleased.
Of course, just as everyone is getting along, Ozzy arrives. It turns out, busting your butt to save someone’s life does tend to make you more likeable in the eyes of their family. Enough to make Papa Maharaja ok with you marrying his daughter’s widower? Let’s find out!
Papa Maharaja: JB, let’s go for a stroll, we have stuff to talk about. Here’s the deal: you made my daughter so happy, and you gave me an heir. When she was murdered, even though you were grieving, you pulled it together to protect your son. Do you know how much I value you?
JB: I can only extrapolate, but I’m a parent too, so yes?
Papa Maharaja: You’re the only one who can ensure my family’s succession.
JB: Don’t worry, I’ll make sure that August is raised right so he’ll be ready: it’s the most important thing to me.
Papa Maharaja: Great, so clearly the best option here is for you to marry Chandrika, right?
JB: I…. I can’t. I know what you’re worried about, but I think August will be better off if he’s raised in a home with parents who love each other; that’s what he would have had if Kamlavati hadn’t died.
JB: Yup. I know Ozzy and I can provide a home that will keep August safe.
Papa Maharaja: Ok. You have my blessing. Bye!
Later that night, Papa Maharaja prepares to leave, but not before declaring that the house will, from now on, belong to August, and will be known as Beecham House (hey, that’s the name of the show!). He blesses JB, waves to everyone else, and gets in the carriage. JB and Chandrika say goodbye cordially, and head off into the night.
Across town, General Castillon, who really should be resting after being STABBED, is, uh, doing some stabbing of his own. Yes folks, I'm talking about sex! Begum Samru is happy that he didn’t get murdered, and that JB is now indebted to him. Should she have her army go kill Snakey Sideburns? No, Castillon knows a good thing when he sees it, and is perfectly happy to submit to her tender mercies. It’s a little confusing what exactly is happening other than a) they’re both turned on by schemes and b) Castillon is jealous of Begum Samru’s ongoing interest in JB. But to quote the baller lady herself:
Loosen up, Castillon! Back at Beecham House, it looks like Brother Beecham and Chanchal are finally going to have a conversation about their situation.
Brother Beecham: I hear you’re planning to go home?
Chanchal, sarcastically: Yeah, so you never have to see me again?
Brother Beecham: Are you trying to mess with me?
Chanchal: Look, I never thought I’d be happy to raise some random Englishman’s baby solo, but if you don’t do the right thing and marry me, I’ll have no other choice.
Of course, Baadal is nearby while this goes down. Was he cursed by a vindictive witch? Because tbh that's the only explanation I can come up with for why he's always finding himself in these situations. Thankfully, this encounter is wrapping up. Baadal and Brother Beecham share some intense eye contact as Chanchal storms off.
Time passes, and everything is on the up and up. Bindu and Mool Chand joke around in the kitchen, everyone hangs out with baby August, and JB even sells that honkin’ big diamond. Mom Beecham follows Chanchal around and pawns her chores off on the nearest available man. Everyone seems pretty happy, including Castillon, who limps in to visit.
JB: Good to see ya pal!
Castillon: Same; can we talk? In private?
They head off to do just that, but not before PTF Violet can get a good look.
Mom Beecham: Violet, no. He’s FRENCH. You know what that means: he’s a sexy nightmare.
PTF Violet: Ozzy, you were friends with him — is he single?
Ozzy: Uh, I wouldn’t try it. He’s… complicated?
Mom Beecham: Yeah, like I said: a sexy nightmare.
PTF Violet (correct): Of course. Men are the worst.
In the other room, JB tries to give Castillon a hand, but is turned down.
Castillon: Ok, first things first, I have to thank you. If you hadn’t sexily, I mean, heroically, gone after Snakey Sideburns, I might have died.
JB: Well thanks. Speaking of that snake, any news on ol’ Sideburns?
Castillon: No. We have spies looking everywhere though.
JB: Good. It’s such a bummer; he was a good friend until he got so desperate that he lost all reason. I hope he finds peace.
Castillon: Yeah, I got stabbed, twice, so I’m a little less forgiving; we’re gonna find him and bring him to justice. Anyway, enough about him — I came to tell you that the funds from the sale have reached the treasury. The Emperor wanted me to thank you.
JB: Excellent. All in a days’ work. Well, thanks for coming, Baadal will show you out.
JB takes a second to bask in the glory of a job well done (and the glory of his amazing garden) as Brother Beecham and Ozzy approach.
Brother Beecham: Hey, so about that job offer from earlier — you still need a business partner?
JB: Um, YES, that would be the best!
Brother Beecham: Awesome, it’ll be great to have a job where people aren’t shooting at me all the time!
JB: You’d be surprised. You can start tomorrow and take over while I’m away.
Brother Beecham: Say what now?
JB: Dude, did you miss the memo? Ozzy and I are going on an unchaperoned trip.
Ozzy: Oooh, that’s inappropriate!
JB: Yeah, kind of the point.
Brother Beecham: LOL, you crazy kids. Have fun!
Where are they headed on this magical trip? The Taj Mahal, which JB quite romantically describes as a monument to love. Ozzy is suitably wowed: she never thought she’d get to see it. Now before you question that assertion on her part, keep in mind that the Taj Mahal is over 150 miles from Delhi, and Ozzy is a poor governess. Well done, JB, well done. In case you thought this was just a weirdly long road trip/side quest, JB takes advantage of the stunning vista to propose, and of course, Ozzy says yes.
They get in a carriage to head back, and are too besotted to realize that they’ve been followed by the still creepy personage of Snakey Sideburns. Unfortunately, this recap is about to get a lot less fun: they come home to a massacre. The gates are open, and several of the guards are dead or dying by the door. In the courtyard, Baadal is trying to tend to Ram Lal, who looks like he might have been stabbed in the neck. He's in very bad shape. No one can explain exactly what happened, because the attackers came dressed as servants, but Brother Beecham tearfully tells JB that there’s been a tragedy: Baby August has been kidnapped. Brother Beecham and Baadal run into the courtyard to try and track the kidnappers, followed by JB. Mool Chand and Ozzy try to take care of Ram Lal; Maya, Chanchal, and Mom Beecham cry, and Baby August’s empty crib sways in the breeze.
WAIT — I’m sorry, but are you freakin’ kidding me with this? That’s how the show is ending?
I refuse to acknowledge THAT, so here are some other scenarios I came up with that could have happened instead. Take your pick!
When the kidnappers came, Mom Beecham revealed a heretofore unknown talent for violence. She takes out all the baddies before anyone can blink; she’s had a lot of time to study the blade since her husband got shipped off to a penal colony! She realizes she’s been a racist jag and funnels her fighting time into unlearning her toxic nonsense, and everyone is better for it.
PTF Violet lives up to her recap name, and in a REAL plot twist, realizes that compulsory heterosexuality got to her, and renounces men entirely. She’s fine for money (her dad’s rich, after all) and was mostly worried about being alone. Ozzy decides she’s had enough with the bonkers Beecham hijinks, and the two run off together.
Don’t act like you didn’t think I’d say it: Begum Samru gets her wish, and no longer has to choose between her, uh, foreign affairs. This works out pretty well for everyone, except the neighbors. Castillon and JB are constantly trying to one up each other, which just means more pushups and exposed chest hair for Begum Samru. Nothing but respect for MY president.
Brother Beecham has had enough of the swashbuckling army life and decides to get over his commitment issues! He and Chanchal are pretty happy together.
Bindu takes Baadal home to visit her family. Between his sarod skills and him chilling out when he’s not at work, her many nieces and female cousins are lining up; he’s doing just fine.
And, most importantly of all, in the show version of reality, the Emperor's plan works: their army defeats the Company, and the English DON’T violently subjugate India for the next hundred-plus years.
Unfortunately, this is real life, not my made up version.
Hopefully, we’ll eventually get another season of this delightful show, but until then, we’ll always have Delhi. And never fear, gentle reader. I will recap again!