The Durrells in Corfu, iTV’s hit TV series in Season 3 is half way through. The series of eight episodes, features Keeley Hawes as Louisa Durrell, Josh O’Connor as Lawrence (Larry) Durrell, Callum Woodhouse as Leslie Durrell, Daisy Waterstone as Margo Durrell, with Milo Parker as Gerald.
It is the best so far, full of interesting stories to date, providing much mayhem and grand entertainment.
Don’t read any more if you don’t want Spoilers.
In Episode 4, soaking up the sun on the terrace of their ageing run down villa overlooking the Ionian Sea, the lovely Louisa is surrounded by her youngest son Gerald’s menagerie as she reflects on a bumpy month or two behind her, drink in hand.
Since her Aunt Hermione died this has been her normal stance and it’s worrying for the whole family and her friends, who are trying to help her get over losing her favourite relative.
After disclosing the facts of his day in the town as a policeman, Leslie produces a telegram from Larry.
He has been in Athens and he’s announcing arrival of his friend a member of Indian royalty the next day, and for them to look after him until he arrives in a day or two’s time.
Louisa who declares they are all to treat this ‘Prince’ as anyone else, takes off to find Lugaretzia (Anna Savva) the maid, asking Spiro to pick up a crate of champagne.
She has decided to give the place a quick spring clean and asks Leslie, Gerald and Margo to start on the garden; they promptly all lie down to rest.
Friend of the family Spiros (Alexis Georgoulis) arrives with Professor Theo (Yorgos Karamihos) Gerald’s mentor, who has shrimps for the pair of flamingo Gerry is studying.
Margo is kept busy observing her mother’s new strange mood, when she decides Gerry must go to school.
Louisa talks to Spiros, waxing lyrically about what she requires until he tells her there is only one school nearby and the ‘family’ must pass a test, if she wants Gerald to get in.
Prince JeeJeebouy (Tanmay Dhanania) arrives, addressing them all by name, giving a brief synopsis of everyone’s interests… he’s been well schooled by Larry.
He tells them he is not royalty. His mother just named him ‘prince’… and well, we understand when he promises to entertain everyone while he is there.
Louisa is more than impressed, she really enjoys JeeJee being there because of the lively conversation he encourages.
JeeJee compliments Louisa on her having a special family. She thinks he’s very special and so polite… the family all fall in love with him too.
He has promised to live each day as if it is his last and Margot believes he’s on the side of the angels! She observes JeeJee simply ‘loves life’.
Larry arrives with Captain Creech (James Cosmo). He found him sleeping on a street, having fallen on hard times.
Louisa is none too pleased. They have a history she doesn’t want to be reminded of.
Gerald is not impressed either, because he takes over his room and regales them all with bawdy crass tales and behaviour. Louisa is horrified when he brings her his pants to ‘scrub’, although JeeJee kindly takes them off her hands.
Leslie is out on patrol in town when he runs into Daphne. She is carrying his child and once again she pleads with him to marry her. He refuses as they are not ‘in love’.
He then finds a baby lying in a pram with no sign of its mother in sight. He cannot leave it, so goes on the run around the block to find its mother, who turns out to be the local Doctor and feeling generous, he promises not to charge her with neglect.
She is becoming renowned for forgetting she has this baby, which she’s always losing.
Louisa arrives at the Professor’s X ray practice to ask advice about a local school for Gerry.
Larry declares he loves the boat that belongs to the Captain, and despite it being half sunk at the dock in the harbour, buys it for twenty pounds.
Leslie dives overboard and leaves Larry on his boat as he’s being boorish and not listening at all to his younger brother’s advice.
Larry falls asleep and awakes to find himself way out to sea and soon, coming ashore in Albania. Instead of finding him hostile, they tow him home much to everyone’s surprise.
JeeJee goes fishing, bringing home a basketful of sardines for ‘drying’ on a frame in the garden. No one is pleased as they are soon well on ‘the nose’. He tells them all how he is on his way to Persia to visit a famous holy man and will fast for four days before he leaves.
He accompanies the family on his flute as they join into a singalong started by the captain.
Leslie is on patrol again in town when he discovers Daphne’s father smuggling cigarettes and he’s not sure whether to report him or not. He lets her know that he won’t mention it and his hope they can be a family, despite her not being married to him.
JeeJee is worried about Louisa’s excessive drinking which is just before Louisa is to take Gerald for his interview for a school. It’s no surprise when she fails the test to get in, not Gerry.
Mortified with her behaviour, she decides to take a long hard look at herself. She’s so disappointed with her performance as a mother. Jee Jee offers his assistance.
Daphne arrives with her whole family who come to tea for the first time. Her father is grateful to Leslie for not reporting his smuggling activities.
The Captain comes to say goodbye and thanks Louisa for saving his life. However he also berates her for getting drunk every night. He declares watching her has quite turned him into a teetotaller.
JeeJee leaves after Louisa appoints him an honorary fifth Durrell child whenever he wants to come back. He will be missed.
Gerry has completed his scientific study and lets the flamingos return to nature.
Getting the timing just right, Spiro arrives with a present from JeeJee, a box containing a sloth for Gerald to study next.
Ah, the lazy days of summer on the beautiful island of Corfu just prior to World War II, they were indeed like a state of bliss for The Durrells.
Carolyn McDowall, The Culture Concept Circle, 2018