In Brief

What will happen in series four of Poldark?

The hit show’s fourth outing looks set to delve back into the infidelity that rocked series three

*Spoilers for Poldark series one to three below*

Season three of BBC1’s Poldark ended with dramatic questions left unanswered - but, luckily for fans, season four is just around the corner.

The popular period drama, based on the books of Winston Graham, is set to return on 10 June at 9pm, Radio Times reveals, and fans and critics alike are wondering where the show will head in its fourth outing.

What happened in season three?

“When last we saw Aidan Turner’s Ross Poldark on screen his marriage was on the rocks and he had his sights set on a new role in Westminster,” says Radio Times.

Ross and Demelza (Eleanor Tomlinson) had ups and downs in series three as Hugh Armitage (Josh Whitehouse), a dashing young naval officer, led the captain’s wife astray while her husband’s attentions were focused elsewhere.

Demelza gave in to temptation and cheated on her husband with Hugh in the series finale, which concluded with Mr and Mrs Poldark in bed together contemplating their future in a cliffhanger ending.

What will happen next?

After initially refusing to pursue a career in politics in season three, Ross was dismayed to see his long-time rival George Warleggan (Jack Farthing) voted in as a member of parliament.

However, in a press release, the BBC announced that in the new series, Ross “must defend Cornwall from an empowered Warleggan, and risks everything he holds dear as he embarks on a political journey which takes him to the nation's capital”.

“Demelza finds her loyalties torn, Elizabeth tries to strengthen her marriage, Morwenna continues to be oppressed by husband Reverend Ossie Whitworth, and the Enyses are tested as never before,” it adds.

Tomlinson spoke to Good Housekeeping about Demelza and Ross’s relationship in series four, following their rocky patch in season three.

“Demelza and Ross have decided to stay together and so [season four is] them recovering from the pain they’ve caused each other and rebuilding their lives together,” she said. “That’s where we find them - trying to pick up the pieces.”

“No more philandering… what is great about Ross and Demelza this series is they’re a unit. She realises what she’s got she’s not interested in a life of cheating or affairs. She loves Ross.”

“Ross swans off and Demelza has to run everything. She steps into his shoes and it’s amazing how much respect she gets from that. She comes up to some criticism but nothing she can’t handle.”

Turner told RadioTimes.com says “They might start off a bit rocky and they might try to figure things out. It’s a very real relationship, these things can happen in a marriage.”

Horsfield told Radio Times last year: “[Ross] does take George [Warleggan’s] seat. He beats George. At the end of this series we see him coming to the realisation that next time a seat is offered he has to take it. 

“He’s not desperate to head off to Westminster but a catastrophic happening in episode one of series four makes him realise that in order to have the power to effect any change he needs to get out of his comfort zone.”

Horsfield added that the new setting will be a “treat” for fans.

“It’s very much Cornwall-based but there are so many characters and flavours and one of those flavours is London,” he said.

Who is involved?

Stars of the show Turner, Tomlinson, Jack Farthing, Luke Norris and Christian Brassington will all return to the show, while also back for series four are Harry Richardson and Tom York as Drake and Sam Carne, Beatie Edney as Prudie and Whitehouse as Lieutenant Hugh Armitage, “who remains deeply in love with Demelza”, the BBC adds.

“Powerful new characters enter the saga, Rebecca Front (War And Peace, The Thick Of It) is Lady Whitworth, Ossie’s formidable mother and Max Bennett (The Hollow Crown) is Monk Adderley, an unscrupulous society figure who is on a collision course with the Poldarks.”

Also returning is writer and producer Debbie Horsfield, who originally created the show and has written all 27 episodes to date.

Will there be more?

Turner has said: “Definitely we’re going to do season five, we’re going to shoot the fifth one”.

And in case Turner’s word wasn't enough, producers Mammoth Screen have since announced that a fifth series will go ahead, and has been commissioned to air on BBC1, almost certainly next year.

It has not been announced which books Horsfield will tackle for the fifth run.

Radio Times says sources “have strongly indicated that the Aidan Turner period drama is likely to bow out after series five airs in 2019. There has, of course, been no official confirmation of this.” 

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