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Romantic Moment of the Week: The Paradise’s Denise and Moray

Denise and Moray from The Paradise. Photo: BBC
Denise and Moray from The Paradise.
Photo: BBC


THE SHOW: The Paradise

THE PAIRING: John Moray ( Emun Elliott) and Denise Lovett (Joanna Vanderham)

THE EPISODE: Episode 8 of Season One

THE MOMENT: When Moray searches out Denise just as he is about to get married and they kiss.


I have loved the pairing of Denise and Moray since the very beginning of the show. We have a witty and (finally) intelligent heroine and a bit of a Darcy-esque brooding but also brilliant hero. What more could you want? Their journey has not been an easy one though. With their stations and Miss Katherine Glendenning tripping them up constantly along the way, I questioned whether they were going to end up together in the first season of the show. I can tell you that I was quite surprised when Denise had the guts to kiss Moray the first time, let alone profess her love for him. It does not seem like something a woman from that era would have the confidence to do.

There is so much about this show that I admire and love. I love the atmosphere of the show; the elegance, the secrecy and mysteries, and the grandiose setting. The costumes have such a beautiful and even sometimes whimsy aspect to them. The high fashion and the ambition juxtaposed with the lower class and straights of the poor working class shop owners across the street from the Paradise. It’s a study in opposites. You have the grandiosity of the Paradise and the high class Katherine Glendenning (who in my opinion is bat shit crazy) sitting side by side with the working class Denise and the other shop girls and shop owners. However, Denise seems to be this unique character that bridges the gap between the two worlds. She is representative of the new rising middle class that can climb up the ladder of success and make something new and better of themselves. Denise can raise her station and be with someone as successful and high in society as Mr. Moray.

Denise is certainly a very special female lead. She reminds me more of a modern day woman than someone from the 19th century. She knows what she wants and she speaks her mind, even if that means serious repercussions could ensue. Hell, in today’s world she would probably be running a fortune five hundred company. Sometimes her naivety at the beginning of the show surprised me, but it also charmed me. She didn’t seem to realize that she was in love with Moray for quite some time, and when she does she’s just so honest about it that it made me love her even more. She sees no reason to dissemble or hide anything, especially from herself. If there is some frightening truth she recognizes and accepts it rather than living in denial. She’s not afraid to accept every part of a person, particularly Mr. Moray, even with his transgressions with certain women and his selfish monetary desire to marry Katherine Glendenning.

And then there is our lead male. He’s certainly the dark and brooding type. And he clearly has many demons that haunt his soul. But, then again, would we love as much if he didn’t; if he wasn’t a tortured soul? All great leading male figures have some kind of secret or thing that tortures them inside. In that respect, the writers of the show created a hero that is very typical of the Romance genre. Us girls love those dark brooding men. Maybe it’s because they need someone to lighten up their life. It gives the heroine a purpose. We all like to feel needed. Moray is certainly in need of some major TLC. Denise has got her work cut out for her. But, as special as she is, I know she can handle it. Then comes our romantic moment.

We’ve had several moments already between the two, but this one certainly takes the cake. This is no milk and water kiss, or a shy look shared between two people. When Moray realizes that it’s love and not money that he should be racing after, he literally races after Denise, desperate to find her inside The Paradise.  Mr. Moray cannot deny their love, try as he might. Denise has also tried bravely to sacrifice her love for Moray in order to save him and the Paradise from ruin. But she too cannot deny her heart in the end. And here it is:

Moray is getting ready to leave for the wedding.

Photo: BBC
Photo: BBC

Denise is staring in a daze at the veils draped all over the women’s section of the Paradise.

Photo: BBC
Photo: BBC

Then Moray suddenly leaves Dudley.

Photo: BBC
Photo: BBC

In a rush he makes a mad search, racing through the Paradise, to find Denise.

Photo: BBC
Photo: BBC

When he finds her they both smile in relief, as if knowing that this was the inevitable conclusion; that they simply couldn’t give each other up.

Photo: BBC
Photo: BBC


Photo: BBC
Photo: BBC

Moray then walks purposefully up to Denise and kisses her, smiling blissfully all the while.

Photo: BBC
Photo: BBC

Wow! That one was a doozy. The writers certainly captured the characters’ angst in this episode! When they finally end up together my shoulders slumped in relief. I don’t think I could have taken any more. This was a great romantic moment. That kiss was one of the most romantic kisses I’ve seen in a show in a long time. You get the feeling that these two are definitely soul mates.


What did you think of the season finale of The Paradise? Sound off below…


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Be sure to check out autumn’s Romantic Moment of the Week: Oliver and Felicity.

Take a look at TV Review: The Paradise.

Read Amber’s Romantic Moment of the Week: Elijah and Hayley.

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By on November 24th, 2013

About Rebecca Lane

Rebecca Lane grew up in the hot desert landscape of Tucson, Arizona where she decided early on she wanted to write, if only to mentally escape her blistering surroundings. She has always been enamored of the arts and literature. As a child she often wrote short stories, and rewrote the endings of novels that she simply could not abide. She received her Undergraduate degree from Sarah Lawrence College in New York, where she was lucky enough to also spend a year studying at Oxford University. While she began her journey dreaming of the day she would sing opera in a large Manhattan theater, she found in the end she could not stand waitressing and simply could not give up books and her hopes of someday writing them. She is currently working as a freelance writer/editor and earning her Masters in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University.

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3 thoughts on “Romantic Moment of the Week: The Paradise’s Denise and Moray”

  1. I think denise is a yawn in series 2. Moray should have married katherine. She’ s crazy, true, but vastly more interesting. When Moray and Denise marry & she’s bored stuck at home out of the store & he’s still at the store and they have much less in common, who will fall out of live first?

    • I’ll be honest. I stopped watching after season one because I was
      worried of just that. I do, however, think they have great chemistry in
      the first season and in this scene in particular. I can’t give any
      opinions on season two, though.

    • I think season 2 spends time addressing this very problem and comes to a perfect solution in the end – which is good since the show was canceled. That said, I don’t think Denise is a yawn in season 2. She’s just trying to discover who she is as a woman outside of her relationship with Moray and she does. Anyway, there’s no way Denise will ever end up stuck at home while Moray works at the store. That goes against everything that is shown in season 2. But yes, Katherine is a very interesting and entertaining character. I love both Denise and Katherine for being well rounded and layered female characters.


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