‘Poldark’ Season 4 Recap: Everything You Need to Remember Before You Watch the Final Season

From illegal duels to mining disasters to heartbreaking deaths, you can always count on Poldark to deliver the drama. The popular Cornwall-set show returns to PBS on September 29 for its final (sob) season. But before you dive into all-new episodes, you’ll want a refresh on all the events of season 4. Here’s where things stand with Poldark going into season 5. 

Elizabeth is dead

Farewell, Elizabeth Warleggan. Ross’s first love and the wife of the scheming George Warleggan died tragically in the season 4 finale shortly after giving birth to a daughter named Ursula. Her demise was brought on by the sketchy medicine she took in order to induce early labor, which was part of her efforts to convince George that he, not Ross, was the father of her second child, Valentine.

The usually hard-hearted George was heartbroken by the loss of his wife. But we don’t think he’ll remain in the dark about Valentine’s true parentage forever, and once he learns to the truth, it’s only going to deepen his hatred of his long-time rival. 

Ross is back in Cornwall

Ross and Demelza Poldark
Aidan Turner as Ross Poldark and Eleanor Tomlinson as Demelza | Courtesy of Mammoth Screen for BBC and MASTERPIECE

Ross and Demelza started last season on shaky ground following her affair with the doomed Hugh Armitage in season 3. After being elected to Parliament early in season 4, Ross spent much of his time in London, railing against injustice. Meanwhile, his wife was left to manage the family farm and struggling copper mine on her own.

Demelza got a much-deserved break during a trip to London to visit her husband, where she caught the eye of Captain Monk Adderley. The caddish playboy bet George that he could seduce her, but she refused his advances. However, Adderley’s designs on Demelza led to an illegal duel between him and Ross, which Adderley did not survive. Demelza wasn’t exactly impressed by Ross’s antics, which led to another falling out between the two. Thankfully, they patched things up in the season finale, with Ross heading back to Cornwall to be with his family.    

Drake and Morwenna are married, finally 

The long-suffering Morwenna had to endure a lot last season. Her one true love Drake Carne was nearly hanged for a crime he didn’t commit in episode one, and her marriage to the odious Rev. Whitworth made her rightfully miserable. Not only did she have to endure marital rape at the hands of Whitworth, but her mother-in-law also tried to have her committed to an asylum because of her depression. Thankfully, Dr. Enys put a stop to that plan, proving once again that he’s the real hero of this show.

When Whitworth bit the dust mid-season, it looked like poor Morwenna might have a chance at happiness. But then she discovered she was pregnant. Though Morwenna lost the baby, she was so traumatized by her experiences that she rejected Drake. But at the end of the season, they reconnected, with Drake asking her to be his wife “in name only.” Morwenna said yes, and the two married in the season finale. 

Dwight and Caroline are healing after tragedy 

Dr. Dwight Enys and his wife Caroline also had to cope with their share of tragedy last season. Caroline gave birth to their first child, a daughter named Sarah. But Dwight soon realized the baby had a fatal heart condition, and she died soon after. Both parents were heartbroken, and Caroline dealt with the loss by fleeing to London with her beloved pug Horace. But after some time apart, the couple reunited, with Caroline indicating that she might be ready to have another child. We think the odds are good she’ll become a mother again in season 5.

Poldark Season 5 premieres Sunday, September 29 at 9/8c on PBS.