Recap: 11 Essentials of Episode 8
Ralph told Cynthia that the past always catches up with you. But only slander and lies caught up in court when Sood went to trial, Cynthia went on the attack, and Leena and Ian took the stand. Read the recap for 11 essentials of Indian Summers Episode 8, including Dougie's manifestation of a backbone (finally!) and Ralph's suspicious footwear!
Leena reminds Dougie that Jaya brought Adam to Simla to meet his father. "Doesn’t someone need to know that before this trial is over?" She asks him to tell Sood's lawyer but is rebuffed: "What? That we think the Viceroy’s private secretary is Adam’s own father?" Leena follows her conscience and goes to Sood's lawyer, Vinod, herself.
2. A Deal is Sealed
Aafrin shares good news with Ralph: Gandhi has called off his hunger strike upon striking a compromise with untouchables leader Ambedkar, guaranteeing the depressed class 148 seats in the legislature…twice the amount proposed by Ramsay Macdonald. When Ronnie dismisses the agreement with racist condescention, Aafrin can stand it no longer, shouting, "Is this a game for you? When you leave it will be us who are picking up the pieces, living with your plans."
3. Witness for the Prosecution
In between perjury and slander, Cynthia delivers a whopping dose of nationalist sentimental manipulation, telling the judge (but really, the court of public opinion), "What I need you to understand is that although we’re all here by choice and, God knows, each of us for our own reasons—to be denied a proper homecoming at the end like this—well it’s unforgivable. At to my mind, Mr. Sood is very lucky he’s only been charged with one murder."
Warned by Cynthia, "Whatever you do, avoid the Mission," Ralph nevertheless is drawn to see Adam. When father and son lock eyes with each other, it's electric until the fearful boy breaks away and sprints into the forest. Alice, suspicious, looks at her brother.
Sood's lawyer, Vinod, puts Leena on the stand, but when he cannot get her to point to Ralph as Adam's father (an imperceptible shake of the head from Dougie silenced her), he redirects suspicion on her, tearing her apart to the point that even Dougie is roused to shout, "Enough. You let her be." Humiliated by her husband's loyalty to Leena laid bare in public, Sarah spontaneously vomits.
6. More Lies
Cynthia, who is Armie's advocate only when it serves her—and when he's alive to defend himself—attributes Jaya's offspring to him, redirecting suspicion of Adam's paternity from (potentially) Ralph to the notorious drunk.
7. Too Little, Too Late
Alice has been too hurt by Aafrin's pointed rejection of her; when he apologizes for having been wrong about the letter, she is out of patience and understanding. He explains that he cannot desert Sita because of what it would mean for her, but Alice can only see through the narrow lens of her own experience leaving a relationship at great cost. Aafrin, frustrated, says, "She has no India to run to." Yet despite his knowledge that leaving her would bring her ruin, he breaks off with her in the cemetery, leaving her panicked, desperate, ruined.
8. Witness on Trial
Prosecutor Slater does exactly what Sood foresaw, ripping apart Ian's character, calling him a liar, a philanderer, a reprobate, and a traitor. Eventually, the slander proves too much, forcing Ian to lose his temper as he shouts that his behavior doesn't conform to the Brits who would like him to "Stick to my own, swallow the lie. Sit back and watch while an innocent man goes down like all the bloodsuckers over there."
9. Chin Up
Cynthia assures Ralph not to worry, saying, "I’m always here you know. I’m not going anywhere." But he rebuffs her: "Maybe that’s my fear."
Without a jury of a defendant's peers, in accordance with the colonial justice system, the judge (in this case, a compliant civil servant) delivers Sood's devastating verdict. "And in accordance to the law, I sentence you to be hanged by the neck until dead."
11. Thanks but No Thanks
Concerned for Adam's safety and sick with the guilt of taking blood money, Dougie finally stands up to Ralph. He writes, "Dear Mr. Whelan. I return your check. I don’t know what it is you want, nor what you’ve done. We are not for sale. Not me, nor any of the children. Please do not come here again." Ralph angrily tears the letter in half and storms away. The camera follows his furious stride, his feet in new Indian chappals.