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Survivors #14 [Title Image] Previous Next | Votes: 1 | Points: Awaiting 3 votes | Log On to vote
Birth of a Hope
Survivors, episode 14 (2.1)

Last Modified: 28 Jun 2006 13:30:03

Ian McCulloch   IMDB   Greg Preston
Denis Lill   IMDB   Charles Vaughan
Lucy Flemming   IMDB   Jenny Richards
Christopher Tranchell   IMDB   Paul Pitman
Michael Gover   IMDB   Arthur Russell
Tanya Ronder   IMDB   Lizzie Willoughby
Stephen Dudley   IMDB   John Millon
Lorna Lewis   IMDB   Pet Simpson
Celia Gregory   IMDB   Ruth Anderson
John Abineri   IMDB   Hubert Goss
Gordon Salkilld   IMDB   Jack Wood
Eric Hills   IMDB
Jack Ronder   IMDB
Synopsis is travelling to Whitecross to trade some goods. Upon arrival he meets a woman called Pet.

Greg tells her that he has come to trade cured animal skins for wheat as theirs went bad. She is sure something can be arranged. He knows that Charles Vaughan lives at Whitecross and asks to see him. Pet calls out to Charles and whilst they wait, Greg tells her about the settlement at the Grange which he thinks is doing well. Pet shows him the charcoal they have made which heats the stove.

Charles arrives and welcomes Greg warmly. He asks after Abby and Jenny. Greg explains that Abby left their settlement to look for her son, Peter, and has not returned and that Jenny is well. He goes on to ask after Ruth, who they sent on to Charles at Maredell to help with the births of Lorraine and Isla's babies. Charles relates that one of the babies was still-born and the other survived and that both Lorraine and Isla left the settlement soon afterwards. Ruth apparently moved on to a place called St. Mary's to treat someone who had a bad fall. Greg reveals that he wants to locate Ruth as Jenny is pregnant and the baby is due soon.

Back at the Grange, Jenny is reading a book on pregnancy. Nearby, John and Lizzie are fast asleep. Paul checks on them and John wakes. After saying goodnight he goes to see Jenny. They discuss John and Lizzie and how they adopted her and Greg as their parents. She is worried about the birth. Paul tells her he is restless as he wants to find a woman. She tells him that Ruth liked him and he is surprised. She also insists that Greg needs him to stay.

At Whitecross, Greg is taking to Charles about Abby. He misses her but not the tension that existed between them. Charles thinks that the times they are living in means there is a natural distinction between the leaders and the led. He asks Greg to stay tomorrow to look at the wind pump. Greg tells him about his ideas for a telephone system. They discover that both settlements use mutton fat to burn in their lanterns.

Back at the Grange, Lizzie wakes up because she can smell smoke. She wakes John and they begin to cry for help. Paul and Jenny hear their cries and try to go to them but soon realise that the whole building is on fire. Jenny runs outside and screams 'firrrre!' to alert the others. Wheelchair bound Vic appears to be trapped in his room.

The next morning, Greg prepares to leave Whitecross. He asks them to visit any time and promises to return at some point. Greg receives a particularly welcome goodbye kiss from Pet.

After Greg has gone, Pet quizzes Charles as to why he let him go, as he had recently talked of expansion and persuading visitors to stay at Whitecross. Charles replies that Greg is his own boss and wouldn't want to merely follow him.

A few days later, the survivors of the blaze are gathered together in a freezing cold barn waiting for help. Arthur who is walking about outside sees Greg and tells him that the house has burned down, but that Jenny is okay. He boards the cart and they set off to the barn at great speed.

Greg is reunited with a relieved Jenny and the children, all of whom he hugs tightly. John and Lizzie tell him that they have been living on raw carrots and turnips and that they have been unable to light a fire.

Greg and Paul explore the ruined Grange. They realise they can't stay there now. Paul tells Greg that they have told the kids that the others have not died but are merely sheltering somewhere else. Greg thinks they should be told the truth.

Back in the barn, Greg tells John and Lizzie, that Emma and the others (which include Charmian, Vic, Donnie and Pete) were put to sleep by the smoke from the fire. He goes on to announce that they are going to journey to a farm where they can get help and that Ruth will be there too.

They pack up the cart and set off for Whitecross. It is a journey which will take them several days. One night they stop off at a hay barn. Here Jenny collapses. That night non-one can sleep. Arthur complains to Paul that he can't take this latest blow, losing Charmian and the others in the fire has been too much for him. Jenny too is restless. She asks Greg to tell her about Charles and Whitecross. She particularly wants to hear abut the babies there and becomes concerned when Greg says there was only one. She asks about Ruth as well and Greg lies, saying she was fine.

The following day at Whitecross, Pet and a shepherd called Hubert argue over a stolen pig. It transpires that Hubert took one of her pigs in retaliation for Charles taking one of his rams. Pet and Charles are annoyed that he has killed the pig as they have no salt left to store it. He tells Hubert, who is a relative newcomer, that he needs to speak to him about how the community works.

Just as the disagreement comes to an end, Greg and party arrive in a state of exhaustion. Pet and Charles are very pleased to see Greg again. Greg explains that they have been burnt out. Charles immediately tells him they can stay at Whitecross. Jenny who is exhausted is taken inside and immediately put to bed.

Charles and Pet hold a welcoming party in one of the houses for the newcomers. Both wine and honey cake is provided. Charles formally welcomes them all to Whitecross.

Jenny is called away by Greg. She wants to know where Ruth is. Pet asks Jenny if she wants a wash down and she agrees. Pet fetches Hubert to tell her about Ruth. Hubert tells her that he didn't find Ruth. Seeing as Jenny didn't even know she was missing, she is beside herself with fear. Whilst Pet is getting the water for Jenny, she tells Charles that she thinks Greg and the others will stay. Charles looks concerned by this prospect.

Charles and Greg discuss the possibility of him and the others staying at Whitecross. Greg is not sure, but Charles tries to convince him otherwise. Greg is worried that there isn't room for both of them at Whitecross. Charles disagrees.

Charles gifts Greg a tinderbox. Greg thanks him but cheekily asks if he may make some improvements to it. Meanwhile, Pet and the children come across Hubert who is carrying a sack which contains the stolen pig. Realising he's not going to get away with it, Hubert pretends he was bringing it over especially for the new arrivals to eat. Paul and the others are very grateful to him.

Jenny's contractions have begun. She soon comes to tears about the absence of Ruth. Pet tries to comfort her whilst a concerned Greg goes off to speak to Charles.

Greg asks Charles if he will go to look for Ruth. He is especially concerned as he has realised that he didn't leave any information at the Grange as to where they were headed next and Ruth may have gone back there. Charles agrees to go and search for her by motorbike, using the remainder of the stored petrol. He hopes to be back within four hours.

Pet tends to Jenny and tells her a little about her previous life. Her contractions are getting closer together.

Greg discusses Charles with Pet. He worries that Charles thinks that because he is looking for Ruth, that he will stay at Whitecross forever out of gratitude. He also complains that Charles keeps pouring out his superiority over him. Pet remains optimistic about the future and tells Greg she thinks they will all have a lovely time at Whitecross together.

Against all the odds, Charles arrives back with Ruth. Greg is very pleased to see her. Some time later, Ruth emerges after seeing Jenny, to tell Greg and the others that everything is as it should be and they have a little time before the birth. Encouraged by Ruth, Charles lays out his plans for Whitecross. He recognises that they need more people to achieve things. He has high hopes that Whitecross may one day even become a small town.

Pet asks how he feels about having almost bribed Greg into staying, what with finding Ruth, providing food, shelter and the gift of the tinderbox, but their conversation is playful. Meanwhile, Jenny tells Greg that she thinks everything is going to be alright.

By Andy Priestner
The first episode of the second series is unremittingly depressing. The deaths of regular characters, particularly Mrs Cohen, Charmian and Vic, the departure of Abby and the pressing cold, make the hope of the title the last word on either the characters or the viewers minds.

Clearly a paradigm shift has occurred off screen. Indeed it is clear that Jack Ronder's vision of the series has now superseded Nation's. He and other members of the production team have taken the drastic decision of a...

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