Highly rated British-American drama series Poldark returned for the third season on ITV Choice and viewers can be sure to expect more nail biting 18th century revolution.
We chatted exclusively to Heida Reed - who plays Elizabeth Warleggan - to find out more about the third season.
Tell us more about your character in Season 3.
This season definitely sees Elizabeth getting slightly darker, in fact the cast and I joke about her crossing over to the dark side. Whilst she may never truly be on the same level as her husband, George Warleggan (Jack Farthing), she does go further than we are used to seeing. Elizabeth is certainly not a one-dimensional character, she constantly goes through ebbs and flows of life and she grows into a very different person to who she was in the first season. That is part of the reason why I enjoy playing her so much and also why people don’t necessarily have a clear-cut opinion of her.
Throughout the series Elizabeth grows, how have you adapted to the role?
I am so lucky and grateful to be able to go on a journey like this with a character. We cover over a decade in the story and you get to really see Elizabeth grow due to the consequences of her surroundings and of her decisions. You don’t always get that chance with a character so I never feel like I am stuck in the same place with her, she always goes somewhere new and she definitely keeps going in season 3.
What’s Elizabeth doing at the offset of the new season?
We open on Elizabeth on horseback having lost control of her horse. She is heavily pregnant and the question is how far along is she? There was no way of telling back then. So she is up to a lot of strange activities, getting herself into questionable physical risks just in case the baby comes early she can blame it on the horse having bolted or having fallen down the stairs, she is covering her bases.
Having recently married George Warleggan, perhaps more out of necessity than love, how is the relationship in season 3?
George and Elizabeth have that kind of ideal, traditional marriage agreement that was very popular at that time, it’s a very eligible match and that fact holds the marriage together. They both respect this kind of arrangement on the basis of it being sensible rather than romantic. So there is a lot of mutual respect and understanding there. Elizabeth is very much focused on trying to hide her biggest secret, which has an effect on her marriage.
With George keen to put distance between Elizabeth and her son, tells us their relationship?
Geoffrey Charles is a Poldark and is also the heir to the Trenwith estate and so he is very much in George’s way. He loves his Uncle Ross (Aidan Turner) very much which Elizabeth is fine with as she was a Poldark once herself. On the one hand she wants Geoffrey Charles to feel close to his family but on the other hand it would be easier if he didn’t. Having her new baby distracts her from her relationship with Geoffrey Charles a little and George’s manipulations in having Morwenna come to take care of him takes him further away from his mother so there is a strain on their relationship that starts to build and as he grows he becomes more inclined towards the Poldarks than to the Warleggans.
You and Ross share a tumultuous relationship when will that end?
Ross and Elizabeth have finished this chapter in their lives and have been able to let go of it since it all exploded. Obviously there could be a huge consequence but at this point Elizabeth is trying her best to ignore it and carry on with her life. There is still a feud between the Warleggans and the Poldarks and whilst Elizabeth, may not feel as strongly about it as George does she stands by her family like a good wife. However, although Elizabeth has sort of closed that book, there is still the Geoffrey Charles element which complicates things because Ross is his uncle and Geoffrey enjoys spending time with him."
Poldark is a hugely popular series, what drew you to the role?
Poldark is a story about fighting for what is right and for love and the real things in life we believe are worth fighting for. I don’t think it matters what period you set it in, that’s what is so nice. You watch something that happened hundreds of years ago and it makes you realise that people have always been fighting for and struggling with the same things.* Catch Heida Reed as Elizabeth Warleggan on Poldark on Tuesday at 8pm on ITV Choice (DStv 123).