'Peaky Blinders' season 5: Will Linda's plea for divorce from Arthur end Kate Phillips' run on the show?
As Thomas Shelby and Arthur Shelby wade through the raging war, there is much mayhem in their personal lives. Linda is threatening to file for divorce from Arthur. Is this the end of their marriage?
Halfway into the fifth season of 'Peaky Blinders' and the stakes are high for Thomas Shelby (Cillian Murphy) with trouble pouring in from all sides. The Billy Boys made a scathing attack on the criminal gang when they left Aberama Gold (Aidan Gillen) brutally wounded and crucified his son on a cross. Another threat looms over Tommy as British politician Oswald Mosley (Sam Claflin) steps in with his evil intentions and manipulation.
As the boys wade through the raging war, there is much mayhem in their personal lives. Lizzie Shelby (Natasha O'Keeffe) is fed up with Tommy's aloof behavior and Linda (Kate Phillips) is still snorting cocaine and trying to dominate Arthur (Paul Anderson).
Snarky and spiteful, she tells Arthur to be "the chairman, not the doorman"—even if it involves pitting two brothers against each other. At the family meeting, she quizzes Tommy after the business profits and makes a sarcastic comment to mock him: "Arthur, can't you control your wife?" Thomas and Arthur continue to control their wives and that's what spirals into a bigger issue. "I am talking about an empty chair. My chair. My throne. People thinking I'm going to fall, they start behaving in a different way around you. Linda, she wants some for Arthur, Aberama Gold, people in the north, Michael..." Tommy mumbles to himself after the episode.
Linda and Lizzie then pen down letters to their husbands to lay down their feelings and demands. However, both Tommy and Arthur throw it into the flames, paying no heed to their wishes. When Linda doesn't get her husband's attention, she threatens to leave him. Putting the spotlight on weighty issues like divorce in the era of 1929, show creator Steven Knight has only taken the pace of equality for men and women one notch higher with every season.
In search of redemption – she moves in with her Quaker friends in Bourneville and is having trouble finding a lawyer to carry out her divorce to Arthur. The family is against her plea for divorce and Tommy declares, "Marry a Shelby, stay f**king married!"
As Arthur seethes with anger when Mosley comments on his wife, Tommy warns him, "Do not let these people get inside your head." However, the crazy side of Arthur takes over as he tracks down Linda’s Quaker friend and suffocates him to death. Beating his chest, he cries out loud, "I am a God-fearing man, and there is good in my heart but these hands belong to the devil." A visually enticing scene, it manifests how love can turn a man into a heathen.
However, Linda still does not come back to Arthur. With her continuous threats and rebellious streak, will she suffer the same fate as all characters do when they oppose the Shelby clan? Is it time for Kate Phillips' character to be chopped off from the show? Moreover, with Arthur's increasing hysteria and insanity, he could also lose sight and be gunned in the war against Billy Boys.
This season, will it be Arthur, who will pay for his rage or Linda, whose outrage takes her down? As more episodes from the show roll out every Sunday on BBC One, the answers will be revealed.