Ross digs deep in an effort to gain revenge
Despite having to compete with viewers’ fond memories of the 1970s adaptation, the new version of Poldark has been a huge hit. And if the media is to be believed, that’s pretty much down to one man – Aidan Turner, who plays Ross. Thanks to the scenes of him skinny dipping and indulging in a little shirtless scything, he’s arguably become the biggest period drama pin-up since Colin Firth in Pride and Prejudice. However, it’s worth remembering he’s not the only star to have emerged from the series. The programme has also been a great showcase for Eleanor Tomlinson, who plays Demelza. The actress, whose previous credits include Jack the Giant Slayer and The White Queen, admits that it wasn’t until she told her parents about the remake that she realised just how successful the original Poldark, Sunday, BBC1, 9pm had been, but she still knew a good role when she saw one. “For me Demelza was the character who really stood out as having the most incredible journey in Debbie Horsfield’s script,” Tomlinson explains. “For a start she’s completely different from anything I’ve played before. She also has the most fantastic journey; she starts out as an urchin being mistaken for a boy, then becomes Ross’ servant and gradually moves up to become head maid and the best worker that he has and then eventually his wife. “The journey for her in only eight episodes is just extraordinary and roles like this just don’t come around that often.” Over the past few weeks, we’ve seen Demelza struggling to dance, curtsy and generally feel at home in high society, but for Tomlinson it seems the biggest challenge of all has been mastering the accent. She says: “It was very hard, and being from East Yorkshire I had never really ventured to Cornwall as a kid so that was a continual experience for me as well. I worked very hard with the voice coach who was fantastic and so helpful. “With Demelza’s accent, she never loses it but she tames it a little bit – I was anxious that she never totally becomes a lady, she is never like [love rival] Elizabeth, and I wanted to keep that trueness to her roots.” In the last in the current series, we see Demelza once again staying true to her humble origins as she helps Dwight to deal with an outbreak of ‘putrid throat’ among the residents of Trenwith. Unfortunately, in her eagerness to be of assistance, she becomes infected herself, putting baby Julia at risk. That will certainly give Ross something else to brood about as he’s forced to fold the Carnmore smelting business.
Closure Aidan Turner heads the cast of the drama.