Discussion Thread: Poldark


1783 was not a good year for Captain Ross Poldark. A British army officer, he has just returned from their defeat in the American Revolutionary War. He comes home to find that his inheritance is in shambles, that his family thought he was dead, and that his beloved Elizabeth has married another. Well, specifically, she married his cousin Francis. As you can imagine, complications ensue. . . .

Late last year, our library acquired the first two seasons of British historical romance drama Poldark. If you haven’t watched it yet but love PBS’s Masterpiece series and/or enjoy historical dramas, what are you waiting for? As always, follow this link to our online catalog to learn more or place them on hold.

And of course if you’ve already burned through both seasons and are still looking for more Poldark, you can always start reading the Winston Grahame novels they are based on or watching the original 1970s television adaptation of the novels. (We don’t have those in our library, but we can get them through ILL if you’re interested.)

For those of you who have watched it, though, I thought it would be fun to revive the discussion thread style-posts from last year to chat about it.

I’m trying to keep the questions and my own answers in the post as un-spoiler-ish as possible, but we can definitely be more detailed in the comments.

  1. Are you only familiar with the 2015 TV series or have you also watched the 1970s series and/or read the original books?
  2. If you’re familiar with the other versions of the story, which one is your favorite?
  3. What’s your favorite part of the story? Who are your favorite characters?
  4. What are your thoughts on the most recent season?
  5. Are you excited for season 3?


1.I have only watched this incarnation of Poldark. I have been curious about the books and the previous series, but I haven’t had time to get to them.

2. N/A

3. I’m not going to lie, I love the gorgeous Cornish scenery, but I also really like a lot of the characters. Demelza is probably my favorite. I’ve enjoyed watching her learning curve as her social station rises, though I also like Aunt Agatha because she’s delightfully snarky.Β  I also really like the tension that is explored between “old money” like the Poldarks and “new money” like their arch-rivals The Warleggans.

4. I must confess, I found season 2 to be a bit disappointing in comparison to the first season, which was a really nice balance of historical drama, romance, and adventure. In contrast, the most recent season started out strongly and I also liked the ending, but that middle stretch of episodes was just like a giant slog to me at times.

There didn’t seem to be a lot of forward movement in the plot–perhaps expanding the series from 8 to 10 episodes per season wasn’t a good idea in retrospect?–and I thought it got a bit boring and repetitive before improving substantially in the last couple of episodes. (Disclaimer: I watched these every week when they were on PBS, so I might have had a different experience binge-watching all of them on DVD.)

5. Despite what I said about finding the second season uneven, I am excited for the third season because I thought how season 2 ended set up some really intriguing storylines for next year.

Are you a Poldark fan? Do you prefer the older series or the original books? What’s your favorite PBS historical drama? Tell us in the comments!

Author: berryvillelibrary

"Our library, our future"

12 thoughts on “Discussion Thread: Poldark”

  1. I love Poldark!! I’ve only watched the 2015/2016 version and I’ve read the first 3 books, currently reading the 4th. For some reason I like to read the books after the series they are based on comes out as when I’m watching it it’s more exciting! I agree that the 2nd series wasn’t as great as the first, but Demelza is still a brilliant character, even if I’m beginning to hate Ross more and more! πŸ™‚ Great post! I can’t wait for the 3rd series- I cannot get enough of Demelza and can’t wait to see all the new character, like her brothers! Sorry for the long comment, just like it when someone likes what I like! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No worries! So glad someone else likes Poldark! πŸ™‚

      My family likes it, but I don’t know many other people who are watching!

      I’ve been curious about the books but am holding off on reading them. I like being surprised by the show.

      Yeah Ross has become such a jerk. I ordinarily am really okay with a character being awful, but I did not enjoy seeing that side of him at all. It was pretty relentless for awhile.

      Nonetheless, I like the show enough to be excited for the next season. I’m also looking forward to more Demelza and seeing her brothers!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah, I don’t know that many people either πŸ™‚ I know, I love being surprised by the show! The series is so close to the books though and usually the series’ cover two books, so it’s difficult to get any spoilers unless you read ahead!! I hated seeing that side of him as well, why is everyone so obsessed by Elizabeth?! Me too, I’m really excited for it!! πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Elizabeth is like an enigma to me. She’s probably the character I find least interesting, though I do often feel sorry for her.

        But I really don’t understand why Ross is so obsessed with her, especially in comparison to Demelza, who is such a delightful character.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I agree, I sometimes can’t help feeling sorry for her, but even when Francis got nicer and turned into a lovely character she still didn’t seem happy, which annoyed me tbh. I don’t either, Demelza in comparison is brilliant! πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

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