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Carrie's War (1974)


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Episode 3, originally transmitted BBC1, 11/2/1973

Carrie tells Hepzibah of Mr Evans' fury at Auntie Lou for wearing new clothes and make-up for the dance at the American army base. Hepzibah explains that Evans has always resented his elder sister Dilys for marrying into wealth and glamour while he worked hard for his living.

Walking back from the farmhouse at Druid's Bottom, Carrie and Nick see Lou arm-in-arm with an American soldier. The soldier, Major Cass Harper, later calls at Mr Evans' general store. Carrie urges him away before Mr Evans shows up. Lou is cleaning at a local church hall and the children rush to pass on the message that Major Harper will be in the pub. Lou is worried that her brother might see her there, but the children persuade her to go.

Carrie, trying to be sympathetic to Mr Evans, offers to help him work on his accounts. He tells her that the only things worth having in life have to be worked for.

Evans' son Frederick visits, on leave from the army. The children visit Druid's Bottom accompanied by Frederick (hoping to profit from his Aunt Dilys). Frederick helps Mr Johnny saw firewood, but can't resist goading him. Johnny flies into a rage, knocks Frederick down and brandishes an axe over him; Albert and Nick manage to calm Johnny down. Mrs Gotobed emerges and chides Frederick. Carrie realises that Dilys is wearing the last of her collection of ballgowns - the one she said she would wear before she dies.

Carrie returns from school the next day to learn that Mrs Gotobed died that morning. Albert and Carrie go for a walk in the hills. Carrie worries that Hepzibah and Johnny will now be thrown out of Druid's Bottom, but then realises the meaning of a message Dylis had wanted her to pass on to her brother when she died: "Sometimes you owe more to strangers". She reckons this must mean the house will be left to Hepzibah in the will. She is sure Mr Evans will be happy that his sister was still thinking of him when she did this, and did not do so out of spite.

Carrie returns to the shop to tell Evans, but is perplexed and upset by his furious reaction. She is left in tears at Evans' threat to drag Hepzibah through the courts, and resolves to warn the woman.