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24 September 2014
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Babylon 
Emma Pierson in Hotel Babylon

Hotel Babylon – second series coming soon to BBC One



Episode synopses


Episode 1

Written by Tony Basgallop

Directed by Andy Wilson

 

Prominent MP Theresa Evans (Ronni Ancona) is forced to hide in the hotel following the news that her husband Robert (William Scott-Masson) has had an affair. With relationship failures and work in common - Rebecca has split from husband Mark - Theresa and Rebecca bond over drinks in the hotel bar. When Theresa spots a wealthy Texan giving her the eye Rebecca encourages her go for it, only to later discover that he is an undercover reporter. Feeling personally responsible, Rebecca resolves to sort out the situation and invites tabloid editor Maria Henson (Kacey Ainsworth) for lunch. Maria tells Rebecca she will stop the story if Rebecca can provide her with some juicier gossip, but Rebecca is stumped. Later in the episode Rebecca is shocked to discover the paparazzi situation with Theresa was a set-up to further the Evans' new careers as the next Richard & Judy. Maria and Rebecca decide to join forces and form an unlikely alliance to get their own backs on the Evans.

 

Meanwhile Mr and Mrs Poldark (Cherie Lunghi and Russ Abbot) have both undergone plastic surgery and check into the hotel separately to recuperate before meeting up to celebrate their 20th wedding anniversary in a few days' time. The staff become involved in various escapades, trying to prevent the couple from meeting. Succeeding in their mission, the Poldarks are reunited for a loving anniversary.

 

Below stairs the war with rival hotel The Burlington reaches new levels of drama when Babylon's bar stools go missing. Feeling personally affronted, but supported by Rebecca, Gino takes it upon himself to steal a prized painting of the Burlington's founder. In retaliation, someone from the Burlington steals one of Babylon's two new sculptures from the lobby. The "Babylon bandits" have little choice but to infiltrate enemy lines to retrieve it. However, having had a tip-off the Burlington staff are ready and waiting!

 

Episode 2

Written by Simon Block

Directed by Andy Wilson

 

A Premiership football team spend a night in Hotel Babylon prior to an FA Cup game that they are favourites to win. They treat the staff with disrespect and get up to all sorts of antics, including a gang bang with prostitutes. Matters reach a head for Tony when he sees the team's respected manager Peter Yardley (Richard Hawley) taking a bung. After being assaulted by one of the players Rebecca has had enough and, together with the rest of the staff, hatch a plan to get revenge. As a result the team lose their match, much to the delight of the staff who had a cheeky bet on them doing so.

 

Tanya recognises a guest (Dovic) as a former Serbian war criminal but Charlie and Jackie are reluctant to believe her. When the staff set the fire alarm off to annoy the footballers, Dovic is the only guest not to appear. Charlie finds him being held hostage in his room by a hysterical Tanya. Dovic convinces Charlie that he is not a war criminal. However, he later betrays himself, confirming to Charlie that Tanya was right all along. When Dovic checks out he is furious to find that nobody will help him with his bags – the staff support Tanya. As Dovic is driven away, we spot a car following him – we know Dovic will get his comeuppance.

 

Elsewhere Anna is in a tizz when a strange group of people, all dressed in black and named after Cornish villages, check into Babylon. Curious to know what they are up to, Anna is compelled to find out more about them. On the pretence of delivering their odd room service requests personally, she discovers that they are an end-of-the-world cult led by Adrian Tintagel (David Walliams). Anna's desperate to escape but, now she knows their mission, the cult won't let her go. As part of their preparation, the cult are hypnotised by Tintagel. Anna, not buying it, is the first to fall under the spell, but awakes to discover the whole situation to be a sad failure.

 

Episode 3

Written by Andy Rattenbury

Directed by Andy Wilson

 

Caz Simpson (Kelly Brook) - a former chambermaid at The Lanesborough and friend and colleague of Anna's - checks in... as the new Lady Stanwood. Caz and husband Lord Stanwood are hosting a charity masked ball. A jealous Anna lies in order not to be outdone – calling herself the "manager in waiting" - and manages to get herself into the ball by "borrowing" a costume. Anna quickly discovers the upper class isn't all it's cracked up to be when Lord Stanwood (Andy Henderson) tries to get fruity with her in a store cupboard. When Anna tries to tell Caz the two get involved in a showdown - much to the mortification of Lord Stanwood who subsequently renounces Caz as his wife. The night isn't totally ruined for Caz - not only does she find out who the man is who broke Anna's heart (Charlie) she also realises she will be due a huge divorce settlement.

 

Ben looks anxious when it's announced rap artist Switchback (Samuell Bento) is staying prior to a gig. Switchback is famous for having his latest song banned due to its homophobic lyrics. Ben tries to keep a low profile but Switchback recognises him and arranges a party. Not wanting his old friend to learn of his sexuality, Ben reverts back to adopting street talk – much to the amazement of his colleagues. When a girl is pushed his way at the party it looks like he's going to sleep with her. However, the prostitute convinces Ben to own up to who he is. When Switchback riles him, Ben lashes out at him, admitting his sexuality. A reconciliation is dashed when Ben brings up a snog they shared when they were younger. Repelled, Switchback denies it and denounces Ben from his life.

 

Skint and desperate to earn more money, Tanya discovers that some of the other chambermaids are supplementing their income by stripping for a wealthy Japanese guest. Tanya, however, bottles out of her first performance. When Jackie figures out what is going on with she confronts the ringleader Agnes (Catherine Kantor) who orchestrates a mass walk-out leaving Jackie and Tanya alone to turn down nearly 1,000 beds that night…

 

Episode 4

Written by Jack Lothian

Directed by Paul Whittington

 

Robert Kane (Mark Heap) - a seemingly high flying businessman - proposes to his girlfriend Lisa (Sian Brooke) in the restaurant. Initially, she seems delighted; until she learns he lost his job six months previously and his money is running out. Lisa dumps Robert and Charlie saves him from throwing himself off the balcony in despair. The next day, Robert asks Charlie for the vacant position of bellboy. Charlie agrees and makes a bet with Tony that he will last a week. Things start off well but slowly deteriorate as it becomes clear Robert is in denial about his split with Lisa. The situation reaches a head when Robert sees Lisa check in with her new man. He storms into their room and Charlie has no option but to fire him. Charlie is shocked to later discover Robert holding Rebecca's friend Estelle (Emily Joyce) hostage. He manages to resolve the situation and Robert is led away by the police. Tony and Charlie feel it only right to give the wager from their bet to charity - £1.

 

Elsewhere Rebecca receives her decree absolute and decides to hold a divorce party/reunion with her best friends. She invites three old school friends - Estelle (Emily Joyce), Louise (Beatie Edney) and Carolyn (Rachel Fielding) - to enjoy the luxuries of the five-star hotel. Rebecca is really excited about seeing her friends. However, chinks in their friendship begin to show when it's made clear that Rebecca has been a useless friend since leaving school. Carolyn sleeps with Luke as a way of de-stressing herself, only to have the incident backfire on her. Matters get worse when it is revealed that Estelle is seeing Rebecca's ex-husband Mark. After a showdown Estelle makes to leave and encounters Robert, who, due to his fragile state, takes her hostage. Charlie saves the day, freeing her from Robert's grip. Rebecca realises her friendship with Estelle needs time to heal but vows to make more of an effort in the future.

 

Meanwhile, below stairs, Jackie discovers that James (Ray Coulthard) has been living way beyond his means, and has been losing large sums of money in late night poker games, primarily to Tony. With a few lessons in body language Jackie helps him to beat Tony at his own game in the staff's monthly poker game.

 

Episode 5

Written by Harriet Braun

Directed by Paul Whittington

 

Former shop assistant turned reality show celebrity Carrie Cottan (Jennifer Ellison) is the object of Gino's desires. Carrie is famous for having an affair with a TV presenter (Marcus Walker) and is enjoying her 15 minutes of fame. Gino finds he is unable to resist exploring Carrie's room but is surprised when Luke appears. Revealing his true colours, Luke tells Gino he is stealing some explicit photos of Carrie and Marcus to sell to the press. Carrie is distraught to discover the photos have been taken. Eaten up with guilt, Gino tells Rebecca the truth – fully expecting to get the sack. In the end, Rebecca lets Gino keep his job but sacks Luke. Tony is disappointed in Luke and Charlie punches him. Carrie learns that all publicity is good publicity and gets a fabulous underwear contract as a result of her photos making the front page of The Sun.

 

Jackie is delighted when a novelist she admires, Francis Levington (Angus Wright), stays at the hotel prior to his latest book launch. Jackie makes an excuse to see Francis and the two get on well. In a moment of passion Jackie moves in to kiss Francis. However the situation gets out of hand and begins to turn nasty. Jackie frees herself by hitting Francis with one of his books. When Charlie finds out he tells Francis politely, but firmly, to leave the hotel - right in the middle of his book launch.

 

Mrs Dickinson is a board member's wife and lumbers Anna with the task of looking after Petal, her little dog. Despite Mrs Dickinson (Maria McErlane) giving Anna strict instructions on where she is to walk Petal, Anna dumps her in the laundry room and leaves. When Anna returns she is horrified to learn that Petal is in a washing cycle. Together with Ben, she saves Petal just as the water level starts to rise. Frantically blow-drying Petal, Anna returns her, albeit slightly warm, to Mrs Dickinson.

 

Episode 6

Written by Imogen Edwards-Jones

Directed by Paul Whittington

 

Tony loses out on the Concierge of the Year award because his services are deemed old-fashioned. Riled because Gino is crowing at winning Barman of the Year, Tony resorts to getting help from the Russians (below stairs staff). Things seem to go well at first but Tony quickly starts to regret their intervention when he receives complaints from customers. Tony tells the Russians to leave and they do so - but not before asking him to put up one of their friends for the night. Unable to refuse, Tony agrees. The friend turns out to be a drug dealer who starts dealing out of the hotel. Jackie discovers this and tells Tony who ousts the dealer, knowing it will lead to trouble for him.

 

The team are shocked when Rebecca cancels their Christmas party so, in revenge, they work to rule. Charlie tries to make Rebecca reinstate the party but she brushes off the staff's petty attitude. It is only when they refuse to attend the morning meeting that she realises the situation has grown into a full-blown mutiny and reinstates the party. Rebecca is coerced into cooking the meal and tells Charlie he has to help. The friction between Charlie and Rebecca is heightened by the fact that Rebecca is a useless cook and he is brilliant. Matters come to a head and the atmosphere lightens with the help of some cheap brandy. Whilst the staff get merry, Charlie and Rebecca are found in an embrace in the store cupboard by Jackie as she wonders in with the dishy new potwasher. Whilst the rest of the staff celebrate the Christmas party Tony gets a beating from the Russians in retaliation.

 

A famous British actor, and renowned sex addict, Aiden Spencer (Alexander Armstrong) is using the hotel for a press junket to promote his latest film. He's obnoxious and his PA Elizabeth Scott (Sally Bretton) is terrified of him. Anna bonds with Elizabeth and finds out more than she bargained for. Pretending to be a journalist, Anna gets the truth out of Aiden about his problem and, having recorded the whole thing, gives the tape to Elizabeth rather than selling the scoop.

 

Episode 7

Written by Harriet Braun

Directed by Nigel Douglas

 

Wanting to remain professional, Rebecca and Charlie agree to meet later to continue their new relationship. Seeing them together reignites feelings of jealousy in Jackie and she shows an interest again in Charlie. In the middle of balancing both women Charlie's younger brother Dan (Chris Coghill) arrives. He is in trouble over forged artwork and needs Charlie's help. The situation seems harmless until the police arrive looking for Dan. They tell Charlie the truth about what has happened – Dan's business partner is in a coma following a beating and the police believe that Dan is to blame. Not wanting to get dragged into the situation, Charlie wants his brother out of the hotel, but the pressure mounts for him when Dan's disgruntled customer sends his heavies to the hotel. Charlie realises the danger Dan is in and is forced to criminalise himself by securing a fake passport for his brother. The situation with Dan gets in the way of Charlie's relationship with Rebecca and he is forced to lie to her. Rebecca takes this to mean rejection. Charlie feels he can talk to Jackie and, although their relationship is not rekindled, she helps him smuggle Dan out of the hotel just as the police arrive with a search warrant.

 

Meanwhile, front of house, the restaurant's wine list is looking worryingly short of top vintages so when wealthy Mrs Klein (Jerry Hall) holds a wine taste-off at the hotel to win a case of very expensive Petrus '61, James feels he has no option but to comply. Ben is shocked when James confesses that he has lied to his friends, he has a rubbish nose and will not win the taste-off. To make matters worse, James' arch rival Neville Bellingham Jones (Guy Henry) will be the other contestant at the taste-off and is bound to win. When it is discovered that Ben has an excellent nose, the two conspire to help James win the wine whilst at the same time maintaining his reputation.

 

Fed up with having his stock stolen by hotel staff, Gino refuses to give them any more free drinks. In revenge, Anna and Tony play a trick on Gino making him believe he is being haunted. But Gino uncovers the trick and turns the tables on his friends.

 

Episode 8

Written by Simon Block

Directed by Nigel Douglas

 

Hotel Babylon is facing a takeover by Donovan Credo (John Sessions) who is infamous in the hotel trade for ousting the staff and bringing in his own clones. Rebecca is to be kept on but Donovan allows her to keep only two members of her staff. Rebecca chooses Charlie but makes him decide upon the other, dangling the managerial career carrot in front of him. Starting with Ben, Rebecca and Charlie tell the staff individually the bad news. Tony learns he is the other member of staff to be kept. However, he throws it back in their faces and walks out. When Charlie also decides to resign, Rebecca is forced to reveal to him that the Babylon Group is finding an alternative buyer (a Japanese company). Firing the staff was a stalling technique to give the Japanese more time to gather relevant information. Rebecca and Charlie work through the night ensuring the Japanese have everything they need to achieve a successful bid and, at the very last minute, they win the buy-out. As Donovan walks out with his tail between his legs Charlie reassembles the team for a celebratory meeting - however, they feel that Rebecca has betrayed them. When Rebecca leaves the hotel we realise it is for good. Charlie receives notification that he is to be made General Manager at Rebecca's recommendation.

 


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