Review of Second Part of A Very English Scandal

So having been mesmerised by Episode One, last night I settled down to watch Episode Two, which covered the events from the tragic death of Jeremy Thorpe's wife Caroline, ten days after the 1970 General Election, to the shooting of the Great Dane Rinka, on a road in Exmoor, one dark and rainy night in 1975.
The episode covers a period where so much happened, that Russell T. Davies did a good job in making sure only the essential details were covered. It did lead to question marks about what was accurate. There is a good case for example that Caroline Thorpe knew about Norman Scott before she was married to Jeremy Thorpe, and certainly a good case that she was utterly exhausted when driving from Devon to London the day she was killed. As the spouse of a former Parliamentary Candidate, I can tell you that the days immiedately before and after a General Election can be emotionally and physically exhausting. Then there is the fact she was married to the leader of a political party, plus she had a year old baby. Hindsight is easy, but a friend of theirs should have been asked to drive that car that morning, and for Caroline to travel on the train with her husband and son.
What did become obvious throughout the episode is that both Thorpe and Scott tended to damage the lives of those around them through their obsessions and selfishness, and one does ask why Scott went to live and work in Barnstaple when many in his situation would have happily avoided North Devon.
As for the attempted assasination of Scott. One still raises questions about Thorpe if one takes the view he could be innocent. How did he get mixed up with such grubby people? How come people who were otherwise respectful behaved in ways that damaged their reputation out of loyalty to him? (which raises questions of it's own). Certainly the lack of organisation and amaturishness made The Thick of It seem more grounded in accuracy and a sign of more decent and better organised politics.Also how Thorpe expected high office says much about his own state of mind! Given what many knew of him already that was never going to happen.
Certainly Episode Three which will cover Thorpe's resignation, defeat, and trial at the Old Bailey, will be fascinating to watch


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