TV preview: Vanity Fair

UNIFORM APPROACH: Tom Bateman as Rawdon Crawley and Olivia Cooke as Becky Sharp in a scene from Vanity Fair.
UNIFORM APPROACH: Tom Bateman as Rawdon Crawley and Olivia Cooke as Becky Sharp in a scene from Vanity Fair.
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In a world where everyone is striving for what is not worth having, no-one is more determined to climb to the heights of English society than Miss Rebecca Sharp.

This adaptation of Vanity Fair boasts an impressive cast. In this episode Becky (Olivia Cooke) has settled into life as Matilda Crawley’s (Frances de la Tour) favourite companion.

But at Queen’s Crawley, Sir Pitt (Martin Clunes) cannot cope without her. When Lady Crawley tumbles down the stairs to her death, Sir Pitt heads straight to London to see Becky. He wants her back but Becky refuses and reveals some shocking news.

Becky hatches a plan. She writes a letter to Matilda, laying bare the news to her beloved benefactress that the mystery husband is none other than the lady’s favourite nephew, Rawdon (Tom Bateman). Matilda is horrified and cuts them both off.

The Sedleys’ bankruptcy leaves them no choice but to sell their house and all its contents. At the auction, Becky attempts to buy Amelia’s (Claudia Jessie) piano, but she is outbid by Dobbin (Johnny Flynn).

With Napoleon on the loose, the young officers receive their marching orders. And Amelia and George (Charlie Rowe) finally take a stand for love over duty, and marry against their parents’ wishes.

Vanity Fair, ITV, 9pm, Sunday, September 9