So onto our second episode of True Love and, as I mentioned yesterday, this time it features Lacey Turner’s Michelle in a more prominent role. This evening we see her married to Ashley Walters’ Paul, who believes the love they once had is gone since the birth of their son. It is Paul who we follow on his daily commute to his job managing a carpet warehouse, where every day he passes by a bus-stop where a girl smiles at him a moment that keeps him happy for the rest of the day that is until he gets home again.
It transpires that this girl is Jaime Winstone’s Stella, who makes Paul feel a lot more alive than his wife does as she more is keen on caring for their son or deciding what they should have for their tea. Eventually Paul decides to contact Stella, by writing his name and number by the bus stop, with the two finally meeting in her flat before quickly beginning a full-blown affair. Unlike yesterday’s encounter between Serena and Nick, which was built on memories of a relationship long since passed, here Paul’s motives for straying are because he feels that there’s no passion with Michelle any more while there is plenty with Stella.
What interested me most about this episode was the way in which the power shifts in the relationship between Paul and Stella as he is initially seen as the strong character due to the fact that this is an extra-marital affair. However the actors – as well as writer Dominic Savage – almost lull you into a false sense of security as Stella professes her love for Paul, he follows suit almost instantly which then sees her become the more powerful of the two.
It is the strong love that Paul has for Stella that makes him do a stupid thing, which involves him giving her a heap of money, and you know as soon as cash is mentioned that things aren’t going to end well for him. The thing is do we want a happy ending for Paul? This is of course a man who has cheated on his lovely wife who is caring, almost single-handedly, for their young son who seems to want a large amount of attention but again you will have to watch the episode to find out what happens at the end.
As you know yesterday my pet peeve was the amount of music that was used to illustrate how the characters were feeling about each other, something which isn’t as noticeable in episode two. Sure it is still there occasionally, such as Melody Gardot’s ‘Your Heart is as Black as Night’ being played to explain how Paul feels when he sees Stella at the bus stop, but overall it didn’t bother me as much as it did during Nick’s story. Instead we had a lot of silences, especially towards the end of the episode when Paul realises the extent of his mistake, which I think adds a lot to the overall feel of this instalment. The camera-work was a lot more intense here, most noticeably in the scenes in which Stella and Paul are together on her bed with just their heads framed together against a black backdrop. In terms of the performances Ashley Walters was as reliable as ever but I felt that Jaime Winstone was wasted in a role that didn’t really give her enough of an opportunity to showcase her talents. It was Lacey Turner who really impressed me though as Michelle she succeeded in putting across this woman who thought she had found true love, as she mentioned in her one scene in yesterday’s episode, however since the birth of her child had fallen into a routine which meant she didn’t have enough time to be alone with Paul. My favourite scene of the whole episode had to be the one in which Paul confronted Michelle over her lack of passion calling her cold when she didn’t answer him instead busying herself cleaning the dishes and personally I wished there’d be more scenes between the two of them.
The only negative I have for this episode is that the story was very slim here and there wasn’t a complex backstory as there had been yesterday instead this was simply a tale of a man who was bored in his marriage so decided to stray with the first woman who smiled at him. Despite the slight story I think this episode was better produced than yesterday as well as featuring the performance of the series so far from the talented Turner who I feel has overcome the stigma of being associated with a major soap opera and has become a star in her own right. I also didn’t notice the improvisational nature of the acting as much as I did yesterday which once again is a testament to all three lead actors involved in this episode.
What did you think of tonight’s episode of True Love? Did you think it was better than yesterday’s? Leave Your Comments Below.