Indian Summers is almost back — series 2 has just been airing on British TV in spring 2016. So I thought it was time to give those elsewhere a sneak peak at what’s coming up, both plot- and costume-wise, whenever this hits American/etc. shores. (Although there’s no air date yet, PBS has said that they’ll be showing season 2).
Now, this post is going to be SPOILER-Y, but I’m going to try to keep it on the Spoilers Lite side of things. So, if you don’t want to know ANYTHING about what’s coming in season 2, this post isn’t for you! If you don’t mind seeing some visuals and getting some vague hints as to where the plot goes, read on.
Sadly, the first thing to report is that season 2 of Indian Summers hasn’t done as well in the UK, which means it’s been cancelled. I’m bummed, because I’m invested in these characters! According to The Week, season 2 has a “constipated plot,” which I don’t agree with. I’ve been happy to see new directions and layers to characters and storylines! So, bah.
New Costume Designer for Indian Summers Season 2
Wendy Cork (Banished) has replaced Nic Ede for series 2. Sadly, that’s about all I can find out, as there’s no news articles featuring her. It seems pretty typical for the costume designer on a TV series to change by season — it doesn’t always happen, but I’d estimate about 50% of the time according to my unscientific knowledge.
Probably the main highlight costume-wise is that in episode 4, there’s a faaaaaabulous fashion show at the Royal Simla Club. It’s organized by Madeleine, and the styles shown are really great — not just what’s fashionable, but what’s cutting-edge, theatrical, and daring!
New Characters in Indian Summers Season 2
It’s now about 2-3 years on from season 1, and there are a couple of important new characters, including:
Whelan Havistock’s husband has shown up, and now we can really see why Alice deserted him. He’s played by Blake Ritson (Emma, Upstairs Downstairs, World Without End) and at first he seems like a charming 1930s playboy type … but then you realize that all his solicitousness and debonair aura are a cover-up for seething resentment and emotional abuse. Poor Alice.
Kaira is Aafrin’s partner in anti-British activism. And maybe something else…
Another anti-British activist, but one who is willing to do anything to achieve his political aims, causing great anguish for Aafrin.
Sadly, this one doesn’t like puppies like the one in the first season. But this Maharajah (1) is important politically to Ralph, (2) is totally Anglicized, (3) is all about the power to be a dick, and (4) likes the ladies.
An Australian woman who is the Maharajah’s “wife.” She’s a new friend for Madeleine, has a great backstory, and is very much a good-time girl. She’s played by Rachel Griffiths (Muriel’s Wedding, Six Feet Under).
New Directions for Returning Indian Summers‘ Characters
She’s back on top, and most important, back in with Ralph. As ever, she’s machinating from her club on top of the hill.
He’s all about gunning for the viceroy position this season and is prepared to do just about anything to get it. He’s also still busy protecting Alice, doubly so now that Charlie has turned up.
Happily(ish) married to Ralph, she’s the perfect regal politician’s wife that we all thought she’d be. I am annoyed that they haven’t tweaked her hair one iota.
Almost completely disillusioned by the British — or is he? Aafrin has spent the past three years in Delhi, and he’s gotten very politicized during that time. He is, however, still the warm-hearted guy we know and love underneath.
Mostly dealing with shithead husband Charlie. Also, has randomly bobbed her hair — when she wears it styled, it’s great, very 1930s. But this was a period in which women were growing their hair out, not cutting it shorter, so I’m confused as to why it’s shorter than it was in season 1.
But despite Alice’s husband turning up, and Aafrin’s new relationships, that’s not to say that the two of them don’t still have a connection…
Actually relatively happy! She’s still political, and still misunderstanding her brother, but she pursues some new friendships and that leads her to some interesting places.
Gone “full native.” He’s very at peace with the world, despite knowing that it sucks, because he lives full-time up on his tea plantation and basically hangs out with his Indian workers. Screw this whole British society thing.
His friendship with Sooni is still warm, but it leads to a complicated triangle with her and newspaper writer Naseem Ali Khan.
Sarah and Dougie
Shockingly, they have achieved a rapprochement! Doubly shockingly, Dougie has shaved, although I can’t find photographic proof for you! Triply shockingly, things happen in Sarah’s life that, while she reacts to them in typical annoying Sarah fashion, will actually make you have sympathy for her! No more feeding Sarah to the tiger!
Leena and Adam
Leena has had it REALLY rough in the intervening years, but luckily Alice finds her and helps her out… and suddenly Leena gets all British-chic. No more frumpy hand-me-downs for her! Unfortunately, this leads to some issues for her…
Meanwhile, Ralph hires Adam as a servant, but even more interestingly, the two develop a (super complicated) somewhat caring relationship!
Aafrin continues to work his way up the British government, so they are actually doing pretty well! Instead of the shabby lodgings that they had in season 1, they’re living in a house very similar to Sarah and Dougie’s middle-class abode, and hanging out at the club with Aafrin semi-regularly.
Will you be tuning in for Indian Summers season 2? Or have you already watched it?