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Estranged foster-brothers Stephen and Andrew vie to take over the family business following the death of their father.

Thursday on Sundance Now
1 Season, 6 Episodes
September 6, 2017
Comedy, Drama, Mini-Series
7.2/10
Cast: David Mitchell, Robert Webb, Louise Brealey, Penny Downie
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Back Full Episode Guide

  • Andrew has transformed the John Barleycorn into a huge success with a brilliant new look and a talented French chef. Stephen, feeling depressed and defeated, is drinking even more heavily than usual. Laurie's birthday memorial is fast approaching and Stephen needs some help writing a speech to better what will surely be Andrew's amazing oratory. When other former foster children turn up, Andrew's back story starts to be brought into question. Buoyed up by this, Stephen throws every ounce of his manic energy into finding out the truth about Andrew's past. And when he finally does, it's a revelation that looks like it could change everything.

  • Having discovered that the fire insurance policy is out of date, Andrew buys Cass's shares so he can renovate the pub after the fire. Cass and Ellen hail him as a hero. A furious Stephen, fuelled by what is now his customary 'morning wine', takes Maureen the dog for a walk where she escapes into the woods; Stephen almost immediately wishes she hadn't. Dognappers demand money from Stephen or they will kill Maureen, but help could be at hand. Some news from Alison about a local planning decision looks like being the key to revealing exactly why Andrew has returned to the John Barleycorn after 30 years. Cass finally goes off on her six-month travelling odyssey, and the family soon learn that she's got married to an unlikely man.

  • Stephen and Andrew are on a road trip to visit the pub's suppliers and spread the news of Laurie's death. Andrew tries to help Stephen along the way with getting over his ex-wife, clarifying a memory from their childhood and making shocking revelations that Stephen's parents' marriage wasn't all that it appeared to be. Back home Ellen gets a little bit too hands on with the church's drug outreach programme and Cass starts selling her stuff to raise funds to go travelling. Geoff has been left in charge of running the John Barleycorn and brings back a taste of the 1970s - smoking, cheese and pickle rolls and a collection for the lifeboat men.

  • Footfall is down in the John Barleycorn and Andrew, who now has a stake in the business, is trying to figure out ways to sex up the pub and bring in a younger crowd. Geoff is keen to help, but Andrew enlists the help of Cass, who, as an artist, has a 'good eye'.They swap out Jan and Mike for more attractive and younger barstaff, defurb Stephen's pine-heavy refurb and make the John Barleycorn look more like an authentic country pub. But Stephen is furious with Andrew's meddling and insists that the Barleycorn already is an authentic country pub. So when Andrew's improvements appear to bring the 5-star TripAdvisor reviews rolling in, Stephen is suspicious and worries that the John Barleycorn is flying too close to the sun. He soon seems to be proved right.

  • The Nichols family are preparing for the funeral of Laurie, a much loved father, brother, husband and the celebrated landlord of the John Barleycorn Pub. Uncle Geoff insists that Stephen should say one last goodbye to his dad at the funeral home, but Stephen is scared he won't know what to say and pretends he's too busy. As the day of the funeral arrives there's an unexpected mourner at the graveside: the charismatic and charming Andrew. He was one of the many children fostered by Stephen's family in the 80s - his parents' favourite. Just about everyone is thrilled to see Andrew, except Stephen who can't seem to remember him at all. Is Andrew who he says he is? And why has he turned up now after 30 years?

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