‘The Gilded Age’ Season 2 Episode 7 Recap & Ending Explained: Has Maud Beaton Deceived Oscar Van Rhijn?


After many parties and get-togethers between the characters of The Gilded Age season 2, we finally have some serious moments. It wasn’t the easiest episode to sit through because there is genuine fear regarding the nature and fate of our favorite characters in the future. The following is a recap of The Gilded Age Episode 7.

Spoiler Alert

What is George Russell’s plan with the workers?

George Russell is a businessman, and at the end of the previous episode, we believe that he may not be completely hard-headed and ruthless. In this episode, we are confused again. George Russell has made some changes, but they are not absolute. He has introduced safety measures, healthcare, and a park for the betterment of the lives of the workers. On the other hand, he has also given the pay raise only to the tradesmen. That will pit the workers against the tradesmen, and in six months, when George pulls back the changes, the union will be subjected to a lot of infighting and will eventually disband. Basically, George is being cautious to make the situation look as if he has granted the workers’ requests, so that he doesn’t come across as authoritarian and cruel. But the others don’t understand his long-term game. They are blinded by the short-term expenses and have decided to take their own measures to deal with the workers. In the meantime, Mr. Henderson is under no illusion at all regarding George’s plan. While he has agreed to have his picture taken with George Russell, he knows that this is not the end of the war and that there is a huge fight waiting for them.

Does Peggy make progress on the article?

Peggy and The Globe are fighting to save the school, and the most popular idea is that if they must save the school, they need to get some white children to study in it. That is the only way the city will pay attention to it. But bringing white children would mean that there would need to be white teachers. Peggy comes up with the idea to have Marian speak on the school’s behalf. She is a white woman who comes from an illustrious family, and her vote of confidence would go a long way toward the plans of the school. Marian agrees and gives a speech where she vouches for the talent of the school’s teachers. That brings in a lot of Irish teachers to the school who are looking for work. Technically, Irish people are white, but they have their own set of discriminations to deal with. However, it is a start. Mr. Fortune is right to question if that would be enough, and Peggy offers to write an article shaming the Board of Education into paying attention to the school. Also, the awkwardness between her and Mr. Fortune is still as strong as ever, and that doesn’t escape the notice of Peggy’s mother. During the fireworks show, she cautions Peggy to beware of his feelings and to not forget propriety. It is true that Peggy cannot afford to follow her heart, not with her dreams of independence and her own past. But sometimes, giving in to the whims of your heart is the easiest thing to do.

What is happening with Mr. Watson?

Mr. Watson’s stubbornness to meet his daughter and hear from her what she wants him to do finally pays off. Flora comes to meet him and tells him that her husband has been acting without her will. She wants her father to stay with her, with his real name, and be a part of society as her father. This is the best news that Mr. Watson could hear, and he is finally happy to have his family back.

Does Jack make any developments with his patent?

The butler at the Van Rhijn house really came through for Jack. He called in a favor with his friend, who was working in the New York Association dealing with clocks, and asked him to take a look at Jack’s invention. Needless to say, the man was impressed, and it wasn’t long before he was added in as a member. That means that Jack’s patent can now be considered since he has the right qualifications for it.

Has Maud Beaton deceived Oscar Van Rhijn?

Before addressing the Van Rhijns, let us see the developments in the battle between the Metropolitan and the Academy of Music. Mrs. Astor meets Bertha and offers her a box at the academy, something she always wanted to have. However, accepting the proposal would mean Bertha had to separate from the Met. George advises her against it, as staying at the academy would mean submitting to Mrs. Astor, and Bertha has no need of that at all when she can easily lead the city by being in the Metropolitan. Therefore, Bertha is forced to turn down Mrs. Astor’s offer. Sadly, it happens in a room full of people, though that was Mrs. Astor’s fault since she had sought to put Bertha in a spot, which backfired on her. But things may still go bad for Bertha since the Duke is seen in Mrs. Astor’s company right now.

Meanwhile, at the inauguration of the Brooklyn Bridge, Larry announces that it was Mrs. Roebling who helped construct the bridge and not her husband. She is grateful for him, but she knows that when the story gets out, it will be twisted to make her the secondary character once again.

In the most tragic part of the episode and the entire story so far, Ada’s husband passes away. It is absolutely heartbreaking that Ada had to go through it. In his last moments, the pastor and Agnes spoke about how they were happy that the other person was in Ada’s life. At the end of The Gilded Age season 2, episode 7, another tragedy befalls the Van Rhijn household. As we had predicted in a previous episode, Maud Beaton was indeed a fraud, and Oscar comes to know of this when he realizes that George Russell was never an investor in the company, and neither had he heard of it. When Oscar tries to find Maud, he neither sees her nor the company where she took him. Even Aurora Fane doesn’t know where Maud came from, and that just means that she lied to everyone to deceive them of money. Frankly, just Oscar losing his money wasn’t the worst thing, but he had used the Van Rhijn money for the investment, and they had lost almost all of it. The Van Rhijns were close to being penniless.

Final Thoughts

While the tragedies are heartbreaking, the good parts of the show are just like the calm before the storm that would happen during the finale of the season. It is more important than ever for Marian to get married to Dashiell if she has any hope of securing her aunts’ lives, and poverty is going to take away many choices from her or open up a whole new world. As for the others, it only remains to be seen how Bertha wins the battle of the Metropolitan.

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Divya Malladi
Divya Malladi
Divya spends way more time on Netflix and regrets most of what she watches. Hence she has too many opinions that she tries to put to productive spin through her writings. Her New Year resolution is to know that her opinions are validated.

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