The Paradise (TV series)

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The Paradise
Alt=series title over blue wallpaper effect
Genre Drama
Created by Bill Gallagher
Based on Au Bonheur des Dames
Starring See cast
Composer(s) Maurizio Malagnini
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 2
No. of episodes 16 (List of episodes)
Executive producer(s)
  • Susan Hogg
  • Bill Gallagher
  • Rebecca Eaton (for Masterpiece)
Producer(s) Simon Lewis
  • Alan Almond
  • Simon Richards
  • Peter Greenhalgh
Running time 59 minutes
Production company(s)
Original channel BBC One
Original run 25 September 2012 (2012-09-25) – 8 December 2013 (2013-12-08)
External links

The Paradise is a British television costume drama series co-produced by BBC Worldwide America and Masterpiece.[1] The Paradise premiered in the United Kingdom on BBC One on 25 September 2012 and premiered in the United States on PBS on 6 October 2013.[2] The series is an adaptation of Émile Zola's novel Au Bonheur des Dames that relocates the story to North East England.[3]

A second series was commissioned by BBC One in late October 2012[4] and was broadcast on 20 October 2013 on BBC One.[5]

On 12 February 2014, the BBC confirmed that The Paradise would not return for a third series.[6] They cited that the programme had lower figures than other relatively new dramas such as Death in Paradise, Sherlock and Silk. Furthermore, its ITV rival Mr Selfridge was performing better. The BBC also commented that the show was enjoyable: "However, in order to make room for new dramas to come through, The Paradise won't be returning."[7]


Series 1[edit]

Series 1 begins in 1875, and portrays the lives and loves of the people who work, shop and trade, in and around the first English department store.[8] The owner of The Paradise department store is widower John Moray. Moray was once a draper's boy in Emersons, the small shop that grew under his managership into The Paradise, which has come to dominate the high street to the detriment of small shopkeepers nearby.

Into this world comes Denise Lovett, from the small town of Peebles in Scotland, whose uncle Edmund is one of the shopkeepers struggling to survive. Denise takes a job at The Paradise and is soon seen by Moray as a rising star, to the annoyance of Miss Audrey, the head of ladies' fashion, and of Clara, a fellow shopgirl. Moray is financially dependent on Lord Glendenning, whose daughter Katherine is determined to marry Moray and sees Denise as a direct threat to her ambitions.

Series 2[edit]

Lord Glendenning has died and Katherine Glendenning has inherited The Paradise. She now has a husband, Tom Weston, and a young stepdaughter, Flora. Katherine asks Moray, who has been exiled to Paris, to return to revive the fortunes of The Paradise, and save it from being sold. Weston is determined to control his wife and The Paradise, overruling Moray to his own advantage. Moray's position at the Bon Marche is a reference to Octave Mouret's derision and constant competition with the same.


The series is filmed at Lambton Castle, which has been converted into an 1870s[9] bustling upmarket department store. Alongside, a Victorian street with shops and a tavern have been constructed. Biddick Hall, also on the Lambton estate, is used as Lord Glendenning's house.[10]


Main cast[edit]

The equivalent character in Au Bonheur des Dames (if any) is indicated in "[ ]". In many cases the resemblance to characters in Au Bonheur is largely superficial, with the characterizations and backstories vastly changed, and they are sometimes formed out of a combination of multiple characters from the book.

  • Emun Elliott as John Moray, who has built up and modernized The Paradise [Octave Mouret]
  • Joanna Vanderham as Denise Lovett, a shopgirl with new ideas on how to promote business [Denise Baudu]
  • Elaine Cassidy as Katherine Glendenning, a rich girl and romantic prospect for Mr. Moray. [Madame Desforges]
  • Sarah Lancashire as Miss Audrey, head of the Ladieswear department [Madame Aurélie Lhomme]
  • Matthew McNulty as Dudley, a business assistant to Moray [Bourdoncle]
  • Peter Wight as Edmund Lovett, Denise's uncle and owner of a small tailor shop [Baudu]
  • David Hayman as Jonas, in charge of security at The Paradise [Jouve]
  • Stephen Wight as Sam, a salesclerk on the shop floor [A combination of the characters of Hutin and Deloche]
  • Sonya Cassidy as Clara, an anxious shopgirl with a troubled past [Clara Prunaire]
  • Ruby Bentall as Pauline, a cheerful shopgirl (Series 1) [Pauline Cugnot, Denise Baudu's best friend in the store]
  • Finn Burridge as Arthur, a young apprentice and messenger at The Paradise
  • Patrick Malahide as Lord Glendenning, prosperous banker and father of Katherine (Series 1) [Baron Hartmann]
  • Ben Daniels as Tom Weston, Katherine's new husband (Series 2)[11]
  • Katie Moore as Susy, a new shopgirl (Series 2)
  • Lisa Millett as Myrtle, a new cook (Series 2)
  • Edie Whitehead as Flora, Tom's daughter (Series 2)
  • Adrian Scarborough as Fenton (Series 2)

Recurring cast[edit]

  • Mark Bonnar as Peter Adler, a possible suitor to Katherine (Series 1)

Supporting cast[edit]

  • Alison Mason as Martha the nanny (Series 2)
  • Lisa Franklin as Katherine's Maid (Series 1)
  • Bilgi Demirsoz as Katherine's maid (Series 2)
  • Roly Lee as The Westons' butler (Series 2)


Series 1 (2012)[edit]

# Title Directed by Written by Original air date UK viewers (million)[12]
1 "Episode 1" Marc Jobst Bill Gallagher 25 September 2012 (2012-09-25) 6.61
Denise Lovett arrives in a northern English town to seek employment with her uncle in his draper's shop. His shop is failing under pressure from The Paradise, opposite, the first high-class department store in the town, and cannot afford to take her on. Undeterred, she seeks a position as a salesgirl at The Paradise and comes under the watchful eye of the head of ladies fashion, Miss Audrey, and her exacting standards. She soon catches the eye of the widowed owner Moray, much to the chagrin of salesgirl Clara, who has slept with him, and Katherine Glendenning, daughter of Lord Glendenning, who expects to marry him.
2 "Episode 2" David Drury Bill Gallagher 2 October 2012 (2012-10-02) 5.79
Katherine Glendenning brings her friend Mrs Brookmire (Olivia Hallinan) to the store to cheer her up. Dazzled by the array of goods and the attention given to her by Sam at the draper's counter, Mrs Brookmire buys so many items that Moray opens the first store account for her to settle the bill at a later date. Taken ill, Mrs Brookmire is helped by Sam. She invites him to the Glendennings' home, where she breaks down to reveal she has left her husband. She kisses Sam just as Lord Glendenning and Katherine walk in; he is accused of ungentlemanly behaviour and Moray is asked to dismiss him. The reputation of The Paradise is at stake; Moray wants to discover the truth, and Denise decides to help.
3 "Episode 3" David Drury Gaby Chiappe 9 October 2012 (2012-10-09) 5.70
The discovery of a baby by Denise in ladieswear causes ripples through the store. Clara resents Denise's popularity, Miss Audrey fears her ambitions, and Arthur questions his own foundling status. Moray uses the baby to increase sales and Katherine pursues Peter Adler (Mark Bonnar), who runs a home for foundlings. Denise upsets Moray with her idea for a childrens department using Katherine as a go-between. Clara is also upset when the foundlings are brought to the store and her affinity with one of the children causes trouble.
4 "Episode 4" Sue Tully Bill Gallagher 16 October 2012 (2012-10-16) 5.14
Miss Audrey develops a mysterious illness, perhaps brought on by anxiety, causing her to lose her voice. Her absence creates a vacancy for a temporary Head of Ladieswear, and Moray appoints Denise as head because a potential client is expected to make a large order. This causes friction and jealousy between Denise and Clara, who tries to sabotage the order. Katherine enjoys the effect Peter Adler is having on her life, but her behaviour worries her father who accidentally wounds a beater at a bird shoot. Clara tries to seduce Moray once again. Katherine, unable to forget Moray, ends her friendship with Adler. Moray allays Miss Audrey's fears.
5 "Episode 5" Marc Jobst Bill Gallagher 23 October 2012 (2012-10-23) 5.82
Bradley Burroughs'(Arthur Darvill) barber shop is in the way of The Paradise's expansion, and forces Moray to make him a junior partner. Burroughs meddles and causes consternation throughout the store. When Burroughs threatens to reveal facts about the death of Moray's wife, he disappears when Jonas takes matters into his own hands. Denise's idea for a "Gentlemen's Afternoon" is stolen by Miss Audrey and is a disaster when misunderstood by the gentlemen's wives, leading to Denise proposing another idea to rescue the situation. Miss Glendenning deliberately provokes Moray by shopping with his rival shopkeepers, giving Denise's uncle false hopes for the survival of his failing business.
6 "Episode 6" Sue Tully Bill Gallagher 30 October 2012 (2012-10-30) 5.30
Exotic lovebirds arrive as a new attraction to be sold at the Paradise, and Pauline offers to man the counter in an attempt to impress Sam. Lord Glendenning offers Moray a bigger loan to buy the leases of every shop in the street. Moray commits to an engagement with Katherine. Despite the warnings of an experienced Miss Audrey, Denise is unable to keep her true feelings from Moray any longer. On the announcement of the engagement, Clara is dismayed, and Denise leaves The Paradise to live with her uncle, who had earlier struck Jonas after being goaded. Arthur fears what Jonas has done to Burroughs.
7 "Episode 7" Marc Jobst Katie Baxendale 6 November 2012 (2012-11-06) 5.69
Katherine's wedding plans and her future plans for Moray and The Paradise threaten Jonas, whose presence upsets her as does the picture of Moray's wife. Denise's plan for a co-operative of the small traders in the neighboring street has some initial success, causing reduced sales at The Paradise, but fails when the traders fall out prompted by hatmaker Charles Chisholm (David Bamber). Lord Glendenning suggests that Moray and Katherine take an extended honeymoon in Europe following the wedding.
8 "Episode 8" David Drury Bill Gallagher 13 November 2012 (2012-11-13) 5.77
As the wedding approaches, Denise returns to The Paradise. Moray confesses his love for her, and she responds likewise. Moray's resolve is tested when he learns that Lord Glendenning now owns the freeholds of The Paradise and all the surrounding shops, and insists that the marriage must take place. Katherine imparts this development to Denise, saying that it is she who will be responsible for the future of the local businesses, and threatening that Moray could lose The Paradise if he dares defy her will. Burroughs' body turns up in the river, and since Jonas is the main suspect Dudley attempts to fire him. Dudley, as best man, prepares to escort Moray to the wedding, prompting him to realise where his heart lay, resulting in him searching The Paradise for Denise. The series ends with the lovers kissing.

Series 2 (2013)[edit]

# Title Directed by Written by Original air date UK viewers (million)[12]
9 "Episode 1" David Drury Bill Gallagher 20 October 2013 (2013-10-20) 6.04
It's one year later. Lord Glendenning has died, The Paradise is up for sale, Denise is still at the department store, and disgraced Moray is working in Paris. Katherine has a new husband, Tom Weston (Ben Daniels). Katherine recalls Moray to save The Paradise, though her husband doubts her motives.
10 "Episode 2" David Drury Bill Gallagher 27 October 2013 (2013-10-27) 5.44
Miss Audrey's impending wedding to Edmund Lovett raises the rivalries of Denise and Clara as to who will replace her. Moray returns from Paris with the flirtatious Clemence (Branka Katić), to purchase the fireworks she supplies. Clemence causes consternation among the girls and annoys Weston, the owner of The Paradise, when she cancels his dinner invitation. The banished Jonas arrives in a cart half-dead.
11 "Episode 3" David Drury Gaby Chiappe 3 November 2013 (2013-11-03) 5.50
The rivalry over the position of Head of Ladieswear causes friction between Moray and Denise. Tom Weston favours Clara and Katherine Weston, Denise, but she causes trouble between them that Tom Weston takes out on his daughter Flora. Dudley takes Flora under his wing, which makes Weston even more annoyed. The annual Paradise outing to the music hall is canceled by Weston, but Jonas engineers events so that Denise has to organize a music hall event at The Paradise starring the staff.
12 "Episode 4" Kenny Glenaan Bill Gallagher 10 November 2013 (2013-11-10) 5.50
Tom Weston's plans to expand The Paradise will put Moray's hope of buying the store beyond his financial reach. But Moray takes on a wealthy backer in Fenton (Adrian Scarborough), who also wants sole ownership of The Paradise. A figure from Susy's past appears, following a break-in at Edmund's closed shop, which upsets her and she in turn upsets Weston's daughter, Flora, and Denise has to dismiss her.
13 "Episode 5" David Drury Bill Gallagher 17 November 2013 (2013-11-17) 5.03
Weston is upset when Moray opens a department selling timepieces, taking the limelight from his new foodhall. Moray schemes with Jonas and Fenton to further upset Weston by using Katherine's father's pocket watch as a centerpiece attraction, giving the impression that Katherine is still in love with Moray. Denise's modern methods attract Weston's attention and he offers her the chance to show the other departments her ways, which in turn upsets Moray. Meanwhile, Sam becomes obsessed with the watch and is convinced he has managed to hypnotise Susy with it.
14 "Episode 6" Bill Gallagher Bill Gallagher 24 November 2013 (2013-11-24) 5.52
Katherine is terrified by her husband's cruel mind games and she confides in Moray about Tom's increasingly spiteful behavior unaware he has been watching their intimacy grow. Denise sees the chance to use her business initiative when wealthy newlywed couple, young Lucille (Liz White) and elderly Campbell Ballentine (John Duttine), arrive in town and discusses the possibility of the husband investing in The Paradise. Moray's scheming with Fenton and Jonas causes emotions to run high.
15 "Episode 7" David Drury Ben Harris 1 December 2013 (2013-12-01) 5.08
Weston hires photographer Christian Cartwright (Nathan Stewart-Jarrett) to take a family portrait only emphasizing Katherine's position in the family is fragile. Cartwright will also be taking the staff's portraits and he takes a keen interest in Clara to be his muse. Moray and Denise's relationship is still strained even when he reveals the plotting to wrest control of The Paradise. Weston's asks Denise to create a new venture to upset Moray and she creates 'Paradise Postcards', with Cartwright, for their customers. Weston reveals Moray's plotting to Katherine and suggest she has a holiday abroad alone. A serialised ghost story bring Moray and Denise back together and Weston makes a proposal to Clara.
16 "Episode 8" David Drury Gaby Chiappe 8 December 2013 (2013-12-08) 5.07
A smartly dressed French debt collector dies in the store shortly after the arrival of Clemence (Branka Katić) who is trading Hazard dice and Parisian rouge, a product associated with prostitutes, and challenges Denise to sell it. Clemence is confronted by Weston who has bought her debts so he can make her his mistress and dispense with his wife Katherine. Denise and Jonas fail to stop Weston and the task falls to Moray to recover the debt in a game of Hazard that culminates in The Paradise's fate being decided on the throw of the dice until Katherine's intervention. Denise finds a way to resolve hers and Moray's differences. The series ends with the lovers kissing.


A soundtrack, featuring music by composer Maurizio Malagnini from the series, was released by Silva Screen Records on 26 August 2013.[13] The music was performed by the BBC Concert Orchestra and recorded at Air Studios, Lyndhurst Hall, London, UK. The score won a Music + Sound Award 2013.[14]

Track listing[edit]

The Paradise - Original Television Soundtrack
No. Title Length
1. "The Paradise Lovebirds"    
2. "The Portrait"    
3. "Children Arrive At The Paradise"    
4. "Impossible Love"    
5. "I Will Ruin You"    
6. "Reception Waltzer"    
7. "Opening The Doors"    
8. "We Will Never Know"    
9. "Denise Is Entering The Paradise"    
10. "Shopgirls"    
11. "Trailer And End Credits"    
12. "I Have Married The Wrong Man"    
13. "Sam Is Innocent"    
14. "Miss Paradise Pink"    
15. "Pauline's Theme"    
16. "Miss Audrey And Ladieswear"    
17. "Perfume From Morocco"    
18. "Sam Could Lose Everything"    
19. "Audrey And The Baby"    
20. "Denise And Moray"    
21. "Lord Glendenning Owns Everything"    
22. "Miss Audrey Is Unwell"    
23. "The Dark Lake And Jonas"    
24. "Katherine And Moray"    
25. "The Wedding Veil"    
26. "You Are Mine"    
27. "The Hope For Love"    
28. "Denise And Moray Are Falling In Love"    
29. "The Final Kiss"    



Series 1 was released by BBC worldwide in a region 2 three-disc set on the 3 December 2012.[15]

Series 2 was released by 2Entertain in a region 2 three-disc set on the 9 December 2013

Series 1 and 2 released by 2Entertain as a six disc box set on the 9 December 2013


Series 1 was released by BBC Home Entertainment in a zone A two-disc set on November 12, 2013 [16]


  1. ^ "Topic Galleries". Retrieved 2014-01-22. 
  2. ^ "PBS Fall Season Offers an Array of New Series, Specials and Returning Favorites: PBS". PBS PressRoom. PBS. 9 May 2013. Retrieved 19 July 2013. 
  3. ^ "Stellar cast announced for Bill Gallagher’s glittering new BBC One drama series The Paradise". BBC Media Centre. BBC. 17 May 2012. Retrieved 26 September 2012. 
  4. ^ "BBC One commissions second series of The Paradise". BBC Media Centre. 2012-10-31. 
  5. ^ "The Paradise". BBC Media Centre. 2013-10-08. 
  6. ^ "The Paradise cancelled by BBC One after two series". Digital Spy. 13 February 2014. Retrieved 13 February 2014. 
  7. ^ "BBC show The Paradise axed as ITV's Mr. Selfridge triumphs in TV store wars". Daily Mail. 12 February 2014. 
  8. ^ Simon Lewis, Producer (2012-09-25). "Media Centre - The Paradise". BBC. Retrieved 2014-01-22. 
  9. ^ King, Hannah (25 September 2012). "The Paradise: Bringing the set to life". BBC TV Blog. BBC. Retrieved 10 October 2012. 
  10. ^ "BBC The Paradise". Biddick Hall. Retrieved 10 October 2012. 
  11. ^ "New cast members announced for second series of BBC One’s period drama The Paradise". BBC Media Centre. BBC. 24 May 2013. Retrieved 19 July 2013. 
  12. ^ a b "Weekly Viewing Summary (see relevant week)". BARB. 
  13. ^ "The Paradise - Original Television Soundtrack (CD)". Amazon. Retrieved 19 July 2013. 
  14. ^ "Music+Sound Awards | International". Retrieved 2014-01-22. 
  15. ^ DVD release date
  16. ^ "Paradise: Season One [Blu-ray]: Various: Movies & TV". Retrieved 2014-01-22. 

External links[edit]