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'The Pursuit of Love' season 1 episode 2 recap — motherhood, marriage and a new love affair

Linda and Fanny in The Pursuit of Love
Linda and Fanny are drawn to one another even when they're miles apart. (Image credit: BBC)

The Pursuit of Love is traveling at breakneck speed as we’re taken on a whirlwind journey of love, romance and foreign travel. But while Linda and Fanny might now both be married with children, their lives couldn’t be more different. 

Here are all our favorite bits of The Pursuit of Love episode 2...

Linda and Fanny — worlds apart

While Linda’s marriage to pompous Tony, unsurprisingly, didn't stand the test of time, cousin Fanny has married for love, not money. Fanny is living a quiet life in the country with her doting Oxford don husband, Alfred. 

Linda becomes a society beauty at the center of the party scene with the eccentric Lord Merlin. Meanwhile, Fanny is at home in her cottage striving to be the perfect wife and mother and we couldn't love her more for it.

Linda and Fanny in The Pursuit of Love

Fanny and Linda's lives are going in very different directions.  (Image credit: BBC)

Motherly love 

Speaking of children, Fanny couldn’t be further removed from her mother ‘The Bolter’ — who abandoned her as a child so she could carry on with her frivolous lifestyle.  However, while Fanny is proving the apple can fall far from the tree, Linda is starting to show signs of being like Fanny's mother. She flits from one man to the next in her quest to find true love — not to mention the fact her daughter, Moira, barely knows who she is. 

Andrew Scott as Lord Merlin 

The star-studded cast has shone in episode two of this adaptation of Nancy Mitford's 1945 novel — with Lily James (Linda) and Emily Beecham (Fanny) stealing the limelight once again. However, we just love Andrew Scott as the eccentric Lord Merlin — the best character by far in this brilliant drama, perfectly portrayed by the Sherlock actor

The Pursuit of Love Andrew Scott

Andrew Scott as Lord Merlin has got to be the highlight of this BBC adaptation.  (Image credit: BBC)

Linda’s new romance? 

Soon Linda’s left Tony and her life in a mansion to run away with a communist called Christian, who she later ends up marrying and living with, in Tony's flat. However, when her new life takes her to France, she finds she might not be as well matched with her new husband as she first thought and soon discovers Christian is in love with another woman called Lavender. 

With her nose well and truly put out of joint, Linda flees France to get home to Fanny… however, she is stopped in her tracks by a mysterious Frenchman who rescues her from despair at the train station in Paris. Could this be the start of another new love affair for Linda as she continues her desperate quest to find true love?

All episodes of The Pursuit of Love are available to watch on BBC iPlayer and on Amazon Prime Video in the US.

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Claire Crick
Claire Crick

Claire is Assistant Managing Editor at What To Watch and has been a journalist for over 15 years, writing about everything from soaps and TV to beauty, entertainment, and even the Royal Family. After starting her career at a soap magazine, she ended up staying for 13 years, and over that time she’s pulled pints in the Rovers Return, sung karaoke in the Emmerdale village hall, taken a stroll around Albert Square, and visited Summer Bay Surf Club in sunny Australia. 

After learning some tricks of the trade at websites Digital Spy, Entertainment Daily, and Woman & Home, Claire landed a role at What’s On TV and writing about all things TV and film, with a particular love for Aussie soaps, Strictly Come Dancing and Bake Off

She’s interviewed everyone from June Brown — AKA Dot Cotton — to Michelle Keegan, swapped cooking tips with baking legend Mary Berry backstage at the NTAs, and danced the night away with soap stars at countless awards bashes. There’s not a lot she doesn’t know about soaps and TV and can be very handy when a soapy question comes up in a pub quiz! 

As well as all things soap-related, Claire also loves running, spa breaks, days out with her kids, and getting lost in a good book.