Order the carriage, raise your credit limit, and hurry to town: The Paradise is reopening for business! Joanna Vanderham (Denise Blackwood) and Emun Elliott (Moray Prometheus) return as the fairy-tale couple who found true love at a glamorous Victorian-era department store.
The Paradise Season 2 airs in eight episodes beginning Sunday, September 28 at 7:00 p.m. on KUED.
In last season’s climax, Elliott’s character, Moray, proprietor of The Paradise, gave up his wealthy bride-to-be on the brink of the altar to fall into the arms of his heart’s desire—his lowly sales assistant Denise, played by Vanderham. It’s a beautifully improbable match, and The Paradise Season 2 tells what happens next.
Critics loved Season 1. “The Paradise ... sparkles and shimmers ... it looks wonderful,” marveled The New York Daily News. “Compelling [and] addictive,” enthused The Philadelphia Enquirer. Variety called it “impeccably cast, extremely handsome ... another first-rate costume drama.” And The Wall Street Journal discerned a “tale of love, ambition and dark competition for power, set in a glitzy world of opulence.”
Elaine Cassidy reprises her role as Katherine, Moray’s jilted fiancée and the daughter of his chief creditor. Ben Daniels stars as Katherine’s recently acquired husband, Tom Weston, an ex-army officer with an iron will, an excruciating wound, and a ruthless sense of honor. He also has an endearing young daughter from a previous marriage.
The returning cast includes Sonya Cassidy as Denise’s professional rival at The Paradise; David Hayman as Moray’s frightening fixer; Peter Wright as Denise’s star-crossed shopkeeper uncle; Sarah Lancashire head of ladies-wear and Edmund’s secret sweetheart; Stephen Wight as Sam, the store jester; and Matthew McNulty as Moray’s ever practical business partner.
New cast members include Adrian Scarborough as Fenton, a shady financier who desperately wants to buy The Paradise; Lisa Millett as Myrtle, the store’s indelicate cook; and Katie Moore as Susy, a gullible but good-hearted clerk.
Season 2 opens a year after Moray and Katherine’s aborted wedding. Katherine’s father has died, she has married Tom, and Tom now officially owns The Paradise. Meanwhile, Moray is cooling his heels in Paris and longing to return to Denise, who has kept her job at the store. But then Katherine unaccountably calls him back to take charge of The Paradise. What could her motive possibly be?
It seems that The Paradise—a retail palace that caters to impulse, feeling, and avarice on a grand scale—has the ability to enrich and empower, but also to destroy. Oddly, the person who understands this best is the savvy country girl, Denise.