Under Capricorn, a 2-part series first broadcast in 1983.
The governor of New South Wales is anxious to welcome his cousin, the young Charles Adare, who arrives eager to quickly make his fortune. Charles is willing to entertain any idea that might help him to achieve his goal. He meets wealthy landowner Samson Flusky, who offers him a business proposal. Flusky already owns a great deal of land -- so much so that the authorities don't want him to purchase more. They want everyone to have a fair chance to become landowners, since the earlier practice of land grants has ended. Flusky asks Adare to purchase land for him so that it appears Adare will be the owner. Of course, Adare will be compensated for his part in the scheme.
An aboriginal man living near Flusky's house reports that he's discovered gold at a remote riverside. Charles becomes obsessed with the idea of a huge gold find, and asks Flusky to advance him the money to go prospecting, with the promise to give Flusky a cut of the proceeds. Hattie is adamantly opposed to the idea, believing the aboriginal man to be untrustworthy. She believes Charles will die in the desert. Flusky, seeing an opportunity to break up his wife's relationship, agrees to finance the venture. Before Charles leaves, he meets a young girl at a dance and flirts with her.
They eventually find out that Flusky has received a letter saying Charles is alive, and making his way back. Sue and Hattie are both angry at others for keeping secrets from them. When Charles returns, the secrets that everyone has been keeping are brought out into the open. It turns out that both Hattie and Flusky have believed things about each other that weren't true. Neither was able to confront the other, and this lack of openness nearly destroyed them.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of Under Capricorn from Acorn Media in exchange for this review.
Final Verdict for Under Capricorn: Four Gherkins, for being a revealing look at a star-crossed relationship in the early days of the outback
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