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Classic TV Drama: The Onedin Line – #82 – S07 E10 – “Homeward Bound”


A great Brit TV Classic – this episode

James and Baines tell Tom that he should become indentured as an apprentice to be a ship’s master. He says that it will cost £50 plus his uniform, however James and Baines agree to act as surety and waive the fee. James gives him a uniform and Baines gives him a sextant. He is overjoyed. Tom falls asleep on the Black Pearl and Burgess boards it and sets sail with James in pursuit. Tom pretends to join in with them and says it’s no skin off his nose which master he serves. Samuel tells Charlotte he wants a divorce but she begs for forgiveness saying she will never let him go. On board the Black Pearl Tom puts sand in the engine bearings and jumps ship in a skiff that he has filled with provisions. At home, Dunwoody tells Elizabeth that Daniel has been appointed Turkish Ambassador and as the wife of a Minister Plenipotentiary she will be expected to join him. Sarah schemes to keep Samuel and Charlotte together suggesting that Doyle should take his play, and his daughter, to America and that she will back him for £1500. She says she will be on the quay to wave him bon voyage and hand over the cheque. James finds Tom who has been at sea for 3 days. He says that he knows exactly where the Black Pearl is. When they find it, Burgess says that they will have to take it over his dead body. His crew refuse to fight with him and James says if he wants the steamer that much ‘leave him be’ much to Baines’ bemusement. Charles Marston’s father confronts Elizabeth saying that if she does not end her relationship with his son it is within his gift to revoke Daniels new appointment. James arrives home with Tom and finds his house full of children from Letty’s orphanage, which has burnt down. James says he is going back to the ship for some peace and quiet. Letty says he is so stubborn to which he replies ‘always have been, always will be’.

The Onedin Line is a BBC television drama series, which ran from 1971 to 1980. The series was created by Cyril Abraham.

The series is set in Liverpool from 1860 to 1886[1] and covers the rise of a fictional shipping company, the Onedin Line, named after its owner James Onedin. Around this, it depicts the lives of his family, most notably his brother and partner Robert, a ship chandler, and his sister Elizabeth, giving insight into the lifestyle and customs at the time, not only at sea, but also ashore (mostly lower- and upper-middle-class). The series also illustrates some of the changes in business and shipping, such as from wooden to steel ships and from sailing ships to steamships. It shows the role that ships played in such matters as international politics, uprisings and the slave trade.

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