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The Paradise is a stunning BBC period drama based on the novel by Emile Zola. The first thing you notice in this series is the sumptious lavish feel to the sets and the period clothing. It is about a department store and the fortunes of its flamboyant owner John Moray. Our main character however is Denise, a young girl who is given the position of ladieswear assistant within the store. Denise dreams of one day running her own store and her ideas are quick to be shot down by the somewhat snooty head of ladieswear (brilliantly played by Sarah Lancashire) who firmly reminds her of her position in the store! John Moray however begins to notice Denise, and her ideas for the store much to the annoyance of other staff. As their friendship establishes it also attracts the displeasure of Moray's fiance!
Throughout this though Moray remains troubled and viewers are left guessing why? There are lots of questions to be answered. Why does the seemingly sinister Jonas have such a position of power in the store? What does he write in his black book? And more importantly what really happened to Moray's wife?
The relationship of Denise and Moray in this series is very much a will they or wont they get together and for this reason this somewhat overlooked gem of a series is well worth a buy if you enjoy romantic dramas. In saying that there are enough side stories in the series to make it appealing to a wider audience and I would recommend it heartily.