As the episode begins, the narrator tells us about a dramatic incident in Newtown petty sessions. A woman made a dramatic plea for the local fishermen. Francis reveals that he can still remember his father recounting the entire episode. In the past, we see Seamie (Isaac Heslip) and Francis (Michael Nevin) running along. The narrator admits the woman making the passionate plea was his mother. The two boys catch up with Davey (Seamus O’Hara) and Mickey joe (Ryan McParland). They jump on their boat. At home, Rose (Hattie Morahan) leaves Sally (Fiona O’Shaughnessy) in charge of her household, so she can check on something at the shop. When she checks the shop, she finds the cabinet full of corned beef. A local woman enters and picks up some items.
Failey (Kerr Logan) turns the boat around, after the boys have caught a bucket load of eel. The men make sure Seamie and Francis are aware that catching eels is a big no-no. Back at home, Rose gets a visit from Captain Dreyfuss (Aaron Staton). The Captain gives her a book about the town’s history. Then, Rose confronts Michael (Owen McDonnell) about the corned beef. This leads to an argument. Rose tells her husband that she didn’t marry a black marketer. The boat carrying Francis is stopped and searched for eel. The men try to hide the eel, but they’re discovered anyway. Davey tries to attack Billy Prince (Brian Milligan). Unfortunately, Dave is beaten and thrown into the water. Prince is forced to jump in and save him moments later. Back at home, Barney (Gavin Drea) watches Emma (Eileen O’Higgins). When she leaves, he checks the book she is reading.
Francis returns home soaking wet. Sally helps him change clothes, while learning about the incident on the water. Francis is now worried about going to court. Sally is worried about being sacked. Meanwhile, Barney speaks to Emma about books. She promises to pick one out for him. That night, Ned (Des McAleer) tells Michael about the incident. He also makes it clear the Francis was there to witness it. Francis is told to say nothing. Later, Rose apologizes to Michael. She also expresses her love for her husband. Michael urges Rose to speak with the Captain about getting the pub ban shortened. The following day, Rose visits the Captain. Rose makes her case and hopes for the best. On the way out, she makes a comment about the Captain’s jacket and learns that he knows how to sew. When Rose returns, Michael seems upset that Rose didn’t get a definite answer.
Then, Rose tries to get romantic with her husband. He deflects the attempt and leaves for the pub. Before he goes, Rose tells him she loves him. She doesn’t return the favor. At the pub, Michael gets a visit from Sergeant Gibson (Peter Ballance). The two men chat, before Gibson reveals his son is in the military. Davey and Ned pay a visit to the Coyne house with the intention of speaking to Michael. The men chat about the defense fund for the fishermen. Ned makes a comment about the corned beef. Ned seems interested in pressuring Michael to get more money to the fund. Barney speaks with Emma. He learns that she forgot about the book. She promises to choose one again. Michael and Rose speak about Davey’s case. Michael admits they want him to hire a good lawyer for Davey. Rose doesn’t believe it will help.
Francis decides to visit Davey and tell him that he has to tell the truth. He runs across Seamie and they argue about that decision. When Francis tries to speak with Davey, he is approached by an approached Davey. Francis becomes frightened and hightails it out of there. Back at home, Barney becomes concerned with Doctor Black (Charles Lawson) arrives with his son, Andrew (Ruairi O’Connor). It is clear that Emma is smitten with the med student. Once they leave, Emma tells her mother she is thinking about making up an illness to visit Andrew. In the morning, Emma jokes with Francis about court, before locking him inside the shed. On the way to the courthouse, Michael asks Rose about the tins. He doesn’t receive an answer. They find Ned and Davey outside. Barney unlocks the door for Francis. He pleads with the boy to tell him where Emma went.
At the courthouse, Prince is questioned by the defense attorney. Emma approaches Andrew, while Davey takes the stand. Then, Rose stands up and speaks on behalf of the local fishermen. She takes evidence from the book provided by the Captain and uses it to suggest the waters were stolen from the local fishermen. The locals cheer Rose. Emma and Andrew seem to be hitting it off. He agrees to walk her to the square when his friend arrives. The judge finds Davey guilty. However, he only charges him a two pound fine. Rose is cheered outside of the courtroom. However, Michael isn’t happy. When they return home, Rose makes sure Francis knows that everything will be fine. Meanwhile, Failey uses Sally to get money.
Barney watches as Emma rides by on her back. She basically ignores him. Later, Rose gets a visit from the Captain. He asks her about the courtroom battle. Then, he gives her some good news. The ban has been shortened significantly. At the end of the episode, Francis enjoys corned beef with Seamie. Seamie admits the food was found at the dump.
My Mother and Other Strangers
The majority of the second episode was mainly bland and forgettable. However, the uplifting moment in the end made the episode pretty good. This is exactly what happened with the opener as well. And, I question whether or not viewers will stick around for the big payoff. It is clear Rose is going to stray from Michael soon enough. Who wouldn’t? Michael is totally miserable. His misery is off putting even for the viewer.
As for Barney, the guy is equally creepy and pathetic. It is definitely hard not to feel sorry for him. In the end, it is likely Emma will come around and accept his advances. Francis and Seamie are definitely high notes. Their childish antics add a little humor to the massively bleak show. The episode was decent, but it could have been much better. A 6.5 out of 10 is deserved. Catch up with previous recaps of My Mother and Other Strangers now!