A Beautiful Home - The Gilded Age Season 1 Episode 6
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Recap

At the wreckage of the train accident in Millburn, the Russells meet with Miss Barton. She explains that five deaths are a tragedy, but none were women or children. Mr. Clay hands Miss Barton a donation from Mr. Russell to help the Red Cross as a sign of gratitude.

Miss Barton asks Mrs. Russell if she will be attending the next meeting. Mr. Russell assures Miss Barton that she will. Mr. Clay suggests that they visit the wounded in Pennsylvania Hospital. A photographer from the Daily Graphic takes photos of the Russells.

Agnes reads the paper, noting how Mr. Russell should take responsibility for the disaster. Ada asks Marian when the Committee meeting at Mrs. Fane's will be. Marian says it may not happen this week, as Mrs. Russell may not be able to attend.

Agnes scoffs, and Ada urges his sister to leave Marian alone. Ada says she got a letter from cousin Margaret, saying the opera war is heating up. Marian doesn't understand why there must be a "war" at all. Agnes defends the Academy of Music, saying there will never attend a new opera house.

Mr. Clay and Mr. Russell discuss the cause of the train accident. Mr. Russell is adamant that they find the person responsible in order to offset the blame onto someone else. Mr. Clay says the police are investigating. Mr. Russell notes that their stocks haven't gone down.

Peggy heads out, telling Mrs. Bauer she's attending a Red Cross meeting with Marian. Peggy asks if she can run any errands for her. Mrs. Bauer asks Armstrong if she needs anything done. Armstrong is short with Peggy, as usual.

After Peggy leaves, Mrs. Bauer asks Miss Armstrong why she is so rude to Peggy. Armstrong insists Peggy's trying to set her up to look bad.

Marian is sad about the train crash. Peggy says they should make the most of the time they have. Marian is concerned about Mr. Raikes. Peggy says she likes him, but he doesn't seem to have a plan. Peggy tells Marian that she'd like to go to the Globe office after the meeting.

Miss Barton arrives, greeted by Marian and Peggy. Miss Barton thanks Peggy for her flattering article in the Globe. Aurora welcomes the three of them in.

Mrs. Bauer brings Ada a dollar as part of her payback.

Mrs. Fane announces that she has invited Mrs. Russell. Mrs. Morris continues to profess that Mr. Russell murdered her husband. Miss Barton is sympathetic but reminds her that this meeting is not the place to bring up a 'society squabble.' Mrs. Russell arrives and sits.

Mrs. Fane puts it to a vote -- who is in favor of Mrs. Russell joining the board? Miss Barton, Mrs. Fane, and Marian all raise their hands, but they are in the minority. Miss Barton reminds them that Mrs. Russell has done more good for the Red Cross than anyone else. Many more of the women reluctantly raise their hands.

Mrs. Morris rises, disgusted that money has made them forget their morals. Mrs. Morris leaves with disdain.

The ladies take a coffee break. Miss Barton thanks Peggy for attending and Aurora for having her.

Miss Barton asks Marian about Mrs. Chamberlain. Marian says she intends to visit her next Thursday. Aurora says she had hoped Marian would no longer be pursuing that line, given the generosity of Mrs. Russell's gift.

Marian hails a cab, but the coachman won't take Peggy. Marian is affronted, but the coachman leaves them. Peggy is not surprised. She says she must choose her battles -- there are too many to entertain otherwise. Peggy hails a cab.

Aurora apologizes to Mrs. Russell for Mrs. Morris. She tells her Mr. McAllister is curious to see her home. She wonders who she can invite as she doesn't know any of his entourage.

Aurora suggests the same group as at her luncheon. She stresses that the service must be English -- it must be a success, and he will not give her a second chance.

Mr. Fortune tells Peggy she increased their subscriptions at the Globe. People are impressed that a Black journalist has access to someone like Clara Barton.

Mrs. Russell tells Church, Baudin, and Mrs. Bruce about Mr. McAllister, insisting that some of the meal can be French, but it should all have English flavors. She says they must do the service in the English style.

Church expresses confidence. Mrs. Bruce makes a suggestion -- see if Bannister, Mrs. Van Rhijn's English butler, might offer some help. Mrs. Russell agrees, leaving it up to Mrs. Bruce to handle.

At home, Mrs. Scott plays piano. Peggy arrives and listens for a spell before her mother notices her there. Mrs. Scott greets her daughter, congratulating her on the story in the Globe. She assures Peggy that her father read the story but doesn't want to encourage Peggy to pursue writing.

Peggy asks her mother not to come by the Van Rhijn house anymore. Mrs. Scott begs Peggy not to cut them out, asking if they can meet just the two of them without Mr. Scott. Peggy is non-committal.

Mrs. Russell informs her husband that she is now on the board of the Red Cross, saying Miss Barton, Mrs. Fane, and Miss Brook all ganged up against Mrs. Morris.

Mr. Russell tells his wife that they know what caused the train crash -- one of the axels broke. The axels were all substandard. Someone in his organization built it that way and "stole his money." She's hoping he can mitigate the personal damage, as Mr. McAllister is coming to luncheon.

He gets angry, reminding her that five men are dead and one of his employees is responsible. She insists that it does matter. He snaps at her and quickly apologizes.

Mrs. Russell shares that Archie Baldwin has written to Gladys. Mr. Russell is annoyed that she still opens Gladys's mail and snatches the letter from her.

Mr. Russell gives Gladys the letter from Archie Baldwin. Gladys can't understand why her mother is not allowing their relationship. Gladys accuses her father of not standing up to his wife. He explains that Mrs. Russell wants more for Gladys than the likes of Archie Baldwin.

Gladys explains that she is ordinary and just wants an ordinary life. Mr. Russell refutes her statement.

Marian tells her aunts she is going to the Russells' for luncheon. Agnes is unimpressed, stating that Mr. McAllister may be interested, but Mrs. Astor would never enter the Russell home. Ada asks if Mr. Raikes will be in attendance.

Agnes assures Marian that Mr. Raikes is no good, and he will lose interest in her as his prospects widen. Ada chides Agnes for saying such a thing. Marian is visibly upset and tells Agnes she is wrong.

As the Van Rhijn servants eat, Bannister asks Mrs. Bauer what Ada wanted earlier. Bridget brings a letter for Mr. Bannister from Mr. Church, asking if he will look in whenever it suits him. Armstrong asks if he'll go, and Bannister says he will -- his curiosity is piqued.

Miss Armstrong expresses worry about Peggy's writing and how it might affect Mrs. Van Rhin's reputation. Bannister doesn't even entertain the notion.

As the Russells lunch, Larry mentions that Mrs. Fish has invited him and Gladys to a "doll's tea party." Mrs. Russell says Larry may attend, but not Gladys. Larry tells her that Carrie Astor will be there. Mrs. Russell grants Gladys permission to attend.

Bannister arrives at the Russells' kitchen and dispenses his English wisdom to Church and Baudin. He says he'll look over the menu and iron out any irregularities with how the table is set.

At the tea party, Mrs. Fish greets Larry and Gladys. She explains that they must all choose a doll and ensure that she is well fed throughout the day. Larry and Gladys don't know what to make of it.

Larry spies Miss Astor, sniffling, sitting by herself. They ask her what they are supposed to do. Larry excuses himself to say hello to a friend. Miss Astor and Gladys bond over the fact that they both have very difficult mothers.

Miss Astor asks why Mrs. Russell has allowed Gladys to attend this party. Gladys explains that her brother convinced her. Miss Astor offers to visit. Gladys asks her what's the matter. Miss Astor notes that it's a man her mother disapproves of for her. Gladys recognizes that they have a lot in common, and they shake.

Bannister inspects the table, offering Church advice about forks, spoons, and salads. Mrs. Russell appears, thanking Bannister. Mrs. Russell apologizes to Church for asking so much of him and asks if Bannister might preside over the luncheon. Church assures her they have it under control.

Bannister says it would be an issue with Mrs. Van Rhijn. Mrs. Russell offers him $100. He agrees to do it. Church is unsure how to present it to the staff.

Bannister heads back to the Van Rhijn house in a jolly mood. He asks Jack to be the butler for the upcoming luncheon. Jack reluctantly agrees, on the condition that Bannister breaks it to Mrs. Van Rhijn.

Peggy and Marian walk after a visit to the Lennox Library. They run into Larry Russell coming out of an architect's office. Larry confides to Marian that he is hoping to become an architect, which she finds odd since he is in the business of banking with his father. She wishes him good luck convincing Mr. Russell.

As he takes his leave, Peggy notes that he seems nice, and Marian agrees.

Marian visits Mrs. Chamberlain. Mrs. Chamberlain that she will never be allowed on the board and notes that they were clever to send Marian. Marian mentions that she thinks it cruel that Mrs. Chamberlain should be ostracized.

Mrs. Chamberlain confesses that the rumors are true -- she was with a married man. Marian tells Mrs. Chamberlain about Mr. Raikes and her aunts' thoughts about him. Mrs. Chamberlain deduces that Marian doesn't really know him, and Marian insists that she wants to.

Mrs. Chamberlain offers her home as a space where Marian and Mr. Raikes can meet and get to know one another properly.

Gladys has invited Miss Astor over for a visit. Mrs. Russell appears and introduces herself. Miss Astor asks if Gladys can join her for a luncheon at Mrs. Astor's house the following week. Mrs. Russell says Gladys isn't out yet but will be soon enough. Miss Astor suggests a ball with quadrille dancers.

When Mrs. Russell leaves them, Gladys notes that this is the first time her mother has entertained the notion of her debut.

Agnes questions Bannister about his "family business," and after much prodding, Bannister explains that the lawyer is only open at lunchtime and the business will take several hours. Ada enters, and Agnes tries to explain the situation to her.

Ada approaches Marian and asks her not to mention the upcoming luncheon at the Russells. Ada explains that Agnes is upset about something to do with Bannister, but she isn't exactly sure what it's about.

Miss Armstrong dresses Agnes. Armstrong makes her concerns about Miss Scott known. Agnes chastises Armstrong for her prejudice and warns her to control it.

Mr. Clay and Mr. Russell discuss the continuing investigation into the train crash.

The next day, Mr. Bannister sneaks across the street to the Russells' house. Bannister inspects the footmen, encouraging Church to join the line. He gives them instructions about their gloves and then dismisses them.

Baudin goes over his menu with Bannister. Bannister goes to check the dining room. Church goes off to do something.

Jack panics about being the butler, as Bridget, Mrs. Bauer, and Miss Armstrong all try to give him useful tips and encouragement. He goes in to tell Ada and Agnes that lunch is ready.

Miss Turner welcomes Marian to the luncheon. Marian spies Bannister. He greets her, looking terrified, but Marian assures that she won't give him up to Agnes.

Mr. McAllister arrives at the Russells' for luncheon. He is impressed by the English butler, who shows him in.

The Russells, the Fanes, Mr. Raikes, and Marian are already present. Mr. McAllister refers to Catherine the Great, which Mrs. Russell doesn't get, but Mrs. Fane covers for her. Mr. Raikes informs Marian of his upcoming social engagements. He expresses the desire to see more of her.

They all go in to luncheon and sit at the lavishly set table. Folded within the napkins are gilded fans for the women and golden cigarette cases for the men, which impresses everyone, particularly Mr. McAllister.

Jack serves luncheon to Ada and Agnes. He has a few mishaps, spilling the wine, but they are patient and sympathetic with him. A letter comes for Agnes. She reads it and immediately gets up and storms across the street to the Russells' home.

Church shows Agnes into the dining room, where everyone greets her with much surprise. The gentlemen stand. Mr. Russell asks if they can persuade her to join them.

Marian and Mrs. Fane try to help Agnes and Bannister save face. Agnes politely takes her leave, threatening Bannister quietly on her way out. Marian and Mrs. Fane exchange a look.

Oscar and Miss Turner take a walk through the park. She tells him that Oscar needs to win over Mr. Russell, as the man loves his daughter and wants her to be happy. Turner urges Oscar to express sympathy regarding the train crash.

Oscar pays her, saying he doesn't care to know her reasons for revenge.

As Miss Armstrong leaves the Van Rhijn house, she notices Oscar and Miss Turner together. Armstrong quickly heads back inside.

Marian tells Peggy that she feels terrible for her aunt Agnes.

Mrs. Bauer asks Bannister what will happen now. Bannister says Agnes won'tspeak to him. He congratulates Jack for doing well. Bannister wants to find out who wrote the letter -- he decides to talk to Miss Armstrong.

Miss Armstrong offers Agnes some warm milk. Agnes is feeling sorry for herself, saying she acted on impulse, Miss Armstrong tells Agnes that she saw Oscar with Mrs. Russell's maid. Agnes is upset and angrily orders Armstrong out.

Mrs. Russell comes to say goodnight to her husband. Mr. Russell tells her that they have discovered who assembled the shoddy axels -- and he says Mr. Russell gave the order to do so.

Show:
The Gilded Age
Season:
Episode Number:
6
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The Gilded Age Season 1 Episode 6 Quotes

I applaud your enthusiasm and I envy your freedom.

Miss Marian Brook

To act on impulse is to make one’s self a hostage to ridicule.

Agnes Van Rhijn