I only just discovered “When Calls the Heart” midway through its first season, but I quickly got hooked and devoured all their episodes in preparation for the season finale (Saturday, March 29, 9pm/8c, Hallmark Channel).
In “Prelude to a Kiss,” the show’s first season finale, we find schoolteacher Elizabeth Thatcher (Erin Krakow) pondering whether she should leave the remote town of Coal Valley to take a prestigious teaching job back home where she would have the comforts a big city can offer, or remain in Coal Valley where one particular handsome Mountie resides.
Mountie Jack (Daniel Lissing) and Elizabeth have had somewhat of a bumpy ride. He was furious at her when they first met, as he had hoped for a more prominent post but was relegated to this tiny isolated town because Elizabeth’s shipping magnate father made arrangements for a Mountie to be stationed there. Though things quickly changed once he sees her through the eyes of a man and not a constable (that and she seems to literally fall into his arms more often than not).
A man of little words, we find Jack’s not a poet, unknowingly insulting Elizabeth when he’s trying to compliment her or trying to make a point. This leads to awkward yet amusing exchanges between the two. But ultimately, he is a romantic and expresses his affection through art, albeit covertly at first. Over the course of the season, they finally had their first proper date, followed by their first dance over a romantic candlelit setting.
Things were going along swimmingly until Jack is finally granted the transfer he demanded when he first hit town. That, paired with the arrival of Rosemary (Pascale Hutton), his ex-fiancée, and our two lovebirds find themselves at odds again.
Of course, based on the blatant promotion of the season finale, fans can be assured that Jack and Elizabeth will find their way back to each other by episode’s end.
Meanwhile, Jack’s superior, Bill Avery (Jack Wagner) continues his investigation of the mine collapse that killed many of the miners as he romances Abigail (Lori Loughlin), one of the widowers. He calls in a judge (James Brolin) to help speed things along, but it might not go in the favor they wish as Henry Gowen (Martin Cummins) throws a wrench in the works. It seems like Abigail is in for a world of hurt as things come crumbling down around her.
I imagine Rosemary and Henry would make the perfect scheming couple. How annoying is Rosemary? Every move she makes, I’m just gritting my teeth, infuriated at her presence. She strikes me as a 19th Century version of Gwyneth Paltrow. Maybe she should “consciously uncouple” herself from Jack! Wouldn’t we all like that?!
The finale will leave fans sated, but wanting for more. I suspect the last five minutes or so will be replayed over and over again.
No confirmation if the show has been picked up for Season 2, but if it does get picked up, I’m hoping to see more of Wyatt (Ty Wood), the brainiac kid who has been sent to the mines instead of school, and less of Rosemary!
The cast will be live tweeting during the finale (both East and West coast feeds) and hope their fans (known as “Hearties”) will turn out to support the show. (@WCTH_TV, #whencallstheheart, #hearties)
Below is a special message from Daniel Lissing and Erin Krakow to all the fans, and be sure to follow these Twitter accounts: