Belgravia stars Ella Purnell and Jack Bardoe have said that viewers will recognise many of the issues that plagued 19th century society – “race, gender and class discrimination” – as the same ones we face today.
Speaking exclusively to RadioTimes.com, the actors (who play Lady Maria Grey and entrepreneur Charles Pope respectively) agreed that there are “parallels” between modern-day life and the Victorian setting for the upcoming ITV period drama, adapted from Julian Fellowes’ book of the same name by Fellowes himself.
“There are definitely parallels,” Bardoe said. “You can see the traces and the DNA of it [the 19th century] in the world that we live in… One of the great things about these two characters and the reason they’re attracted to each other is they have a modern sensibility towards those kinds of issues that they want to break out from the stringency of that class system that was so prevalent in that day.”
Ella Purnell added: “What it all comes down to is wealth and there are still traces of this today, where we still face race, gender and class discrimination. Wealth will unfortunately always be a part of that. Part of that is down to human nature, and that it has only been 200 years. That may seem like a long time, but it takes a long time for things to progress. Things move very quickly, but also very slowly. ”
The series, which also stars Tamsin Greig, Harriet Walker, and Philip Glenister, begins on the eve of the Battle of Waterloo before jumping forward 25 years in time, to a period where the nouveau riche are threatening to challenge the structure of London society – and secrets threaten to destabilise even the most deep-rooted family trees.
The six-part series will begin on Sunday 15th March 2020 at 9pm on ITV, and will air weekly.