Character Review - Charmian Wentworth
Charmian Wentworth joined the community, whilst en route to Scotland with her employer, Arthur Russell in Spoil of War. Displaying an incredible loyalty, Charmian had remained with her employer since the death, as his personal secretary. This role saw her continue to pander to Arthur's needs, perhaps because she did not want to give up the only familiar thing that was left from her old life.
After deciding to stay, she initially acted as an intermediary between Arthur and the rest of the community. However, as Arthur mellowed, Charmian became more free to be herself and make her own judgements on the trials that beset the community. Her finest hour was in Law and Order when along side Emma she protested Barney's innocence and would not agree to his execution.
Unfortunately for the majority of the time the character of Charmian remained under used and was often limited to making up the numbers during a dinner table discussion or a harvesting session. The main problem with the character was that she just wasn't made interesting enough in the first place to be worthy of development . She had no special skills, although she like Jenny and Abby could drive, and was in every way entirely ordinary. She was therefore reduced to reacting to events as the script writers believed any stereotypical middle aged woman would.
Charmian's demise in the fire at the Grange in Birth of A Hope is unsurprising. As the production team wanted a cast cull she was an obvious candidate for the reasons described above. Only Arthur mentions the fact that he will miss her. The emotion in his delivery suggests that he has lost a friend rather than just his secretary.
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Page last updated: 22nd November 2002 All text © Andy Priestner Screen Captures © BBC