Gentleman Jack season 2 episode 8 recap – what happened in the finale of the period drama?

Suranne Jones as Anne Lister in Gentleman Jack standing on a terrace in a dark blue dress with a feather in her hair.
Anne Lister (Suranne Jones) has worries on her mind in the finale of Gentleman Jack. (Image credit: BBC/Lookout Point/HBO/Aimee Spinks)

Gentleman Jack ended its second season in spectacular style this week as matters come to an explosive head over the estate division.

Ann Walker (Sophie Rundle) and Anne Lister (Suranne Jones) are trying to get the matter settled but Ann’s brother-in-law Captain Sutherland (Derek Riddell) makes one last attempt to scupper their plans. Meanwhile, cracks are starting to appear and Ann and Anne’s relationship…

Here’s what happened in episode 8 of Gentleman Jack

*WARNING - spoilers for Gentleman Jack season 2 episode 8 below*

Derek Riddell as Captain Sutherland in a brown jacket and waistcoat alongside Katherine Kelly as Elizabeth in a brown striped dress and white bonnet in Gentleman Jack.

Captain Sutherland (Derek Riddell) stirs up bother as he and Elizabeth (Katherine Kelly) arrive in Halifax in Gentleman Jack. (Image credit: BBC/Lookout Point/HBO/Aimee Spinks)

Captain Sutherland reluctantly agrees to leave Scotland with wife Elizabeth (Katherine Kelly) and come to Halifax to settle the estate division and sign the papers. But before he departs, he tells his mother he is worried about Anne Lister’s ‘unnatural’ hold over his vulnerable sister-in-law Ann and claims that Anne could be a predatory fortune hunter.

When they arrive in Halifax, Captain Sutherland speaks to Ann and says he fears she is being coerced and tries to suggest that she is still ill and fragile and needs protecting. Ann angrily tries to bat off his concerns and insists she just wants her half of the estate.

As Captain Sutherland heads to York to chat to Mr Gray (Adrian Rawlins), the lawyer working on the division, he again says that he thinks Ann is being manipulated but Mr Gray staunchly defends Anne Lister and warns Captain Sutherland about taking things further.

But when Gray’s assistant comes to Halifax to get the papers signed, Captain Sutherland refuses and starts quibbling about one of the lots on the estate and tries to work on Anne Lister’s solicitor Mr Parker (Bruce Alexander) in order to get his own way.

As Ann grows increasingly distressed and accuses Captain Sutherland of attempting to get hold of her money, downtrodden Elizabeth finally speaks out and says that Anne deserves what is hers and a shamefaced Captain Sutherland grudgingly signs.

Trouble in paradise?

Sophie Rundle as Ann Walker in a blue dress and lacy bonnet in Gentleman Jack.

Ann Walker (Sophie Rundle) expresses her unhappiness as the way her relationship with Anne Lister is unfolding in Gentleman Jack. (Image credit: BBC/Lookout Point/HBO/Aimee Spinks)

Meanwhile, Anne and Ann’s relationship is hitting the rocks. A trip to London to find a new teacher for the school should be a treat, but the simmering tensions that have started to grow between them are exacerbated when Ann feels left out after Anne visits her London friends without her. Anne insists it’s not the right time for Ann to join her in London society and tries to appease Ann by asking her to lay the foundation stone and make a speech when the building work begins on the casino for the Northgate development.

While Ann is pleased, she later has another row with Anne over money when she complains about having to pay for everything and says that she is only regarded as Anne’s wife when it’s convenient and when she’s needed for her money. As she admits she is terrified about the amounts that Anne is spending, she says she is still not sure that their relationship is right and that the sooner they part the better…

However, once they get back to Yorkshire, Ann gains confidence as she delivers the speech at the development launch and, after the estate division is settled, they appear reconciled. Ann apologises for doubting Anne and says that they should finally get their wills signed to benefit each other.

Anne says that life will never be easy for them but they are both still there and with her development now underway and her romance back on track, the season ends on a reflective but upbeat note.

Joe Armstrong as Mr Washington in a brown suit and hat and red tie, Suranne Jones as Anne Lister in a tall black hat and dress and Sophie Rundle in a beige dress and yellow feathered bonnet in Gentleman Jack.

Mr Washington (Joe Armstrong) and Anne Lister (Suranne Jones) look on as Ann Walker (Sophie Rundle) makes a speech when building gets underway on the development in Gentleman Jack. (Image credit: BBC/Lookout Point/HBO/Aimee Spinks)

The whole season of Gentleman Jack is now available in the UK on BBC iPlayer. In the US the season started on Monday, April 25 on HBO. The season is eight parts long and new episodes will premiere each week.

Caren Clark

Caren has been a journalist specializing in TV for almost two decades and is a Senior Features Writer for TV Times, TV & Satellite Week and What’s On TV magazines and she also writes for What to Watch.

Over the years, she has spent many a day in a muddy field or an on-set catering bus chatting to numerous stars on location including the likes of Olivia Colman, David Tennant, Suranne Jones, Jamie Dornan, Dame Judi Dench and Sir Derek Jacobi as well as Hollywood actors such as Glenn Close and Kiefer Sutherland.

Caren will happily sit down and watch any kind of telly (well, maybe not sci-fi!), but she particularly loves period dramas like Call the Midwife, Downton Abbey and The Crown and she’s also a big fan of juicy crime thrillers from Line of Duty to Poirot.

In her spare time, Caren enjoys going to the cinema and theatre or curling up with a good book.