The Earl of Sussex: 1923 season 1 character explained

In the finale of 1923, Alexandra’s former fiancé, Arthur, the Earl of Sussex, challenges Spencer to a duel, which results in Alexandra and Spencer getting separated. The Earl of Sussex is played by Rafe Soule.

In 1923, Alexandra was engaged to be married to the Earl of Sussex, Arthur. Alexandra believed the marriage was nothing more than an economic transaction and that she had no say in it.

Arthur was kind, but that was not enough for Alexandra, so she decided to run away with Spencer, a hunter. The two fell in love and eventually got married.

On their way to Spencer’s home, the couple runs into Arthur, his family, and Alexandra’s old friend. The meeting is anything but pleasant.

Arthur’s anger

Alexandra is not happy at the prospect of spending three weeks on the same ship as Arthur and his party. Arthur is not happy either to see them, as he earlier caught Alexandra kissing Spencer at a restaurant.

1923 Earl of Sussex
Arthur sees Alexandra with Spencer

Alexandra’s old friend, Jennifer, tells Alexandra that Arthur was devastated after she left him and that his family is furious, but Alexandra defends her actions by telling her that she never loved Arthur.

That night, Alexandra decides to stop hiding from Arthur and dine with Spencer in the grand hall, which infuriates Arthur. He feels that Alexandra is celebrating her happiness at his expense.

His father tries to help him understand that he avoided a loveless marriage, but it does nothing to soothe his anger. He then agrees to dance with Jennifer when his father advises him not to lose his dignity.

He tries to pick a fight with Spencer and Alexandra on the dance floor but backs off when Spencer threatens him.

The duel

Arthur later gets drunk. Seeing Alexandra and Spencer happy makes him so angry that he challenges Spencer to a duel. People fought duels and risked their lives for the sake of their honor.

Initially, Spencer does not accept, and Arthur’s father also tries to stop him, but Arthur keeps provoking Spencer. When he insults Alexandra, Spencer finally accepts and asks Arthur to choose the weapon of his choice.

1923 Earl of Sussex
Arthur fights Spencer

Since Arthur is an expert swordsman, he chooses swords for the duel. Spencer has never even used a sword, and yet he easily defeats Arthur. Spencer continues to beat him up and drags his body to his family before walking away.

This further infuriates Arthur and hurts his pride. He refuses to give up and picks up a revolver to kill Spencer. To defend himself, Spencer pushes Arthur, who is thrown overboard.

As duels are illegal, Spencer is sent to the brigs, and the crew rushes to save Arthur. It is never shown whether they managed to rescue Arthur or not.

However, the ship captain later mentions that the Earl of Sussex has questioned the legality of Spencer and Alexandra’s marriage, but it is not clear whether he was referring to Arthur or his father.

Due to the Earl questioning their marriage and the command of the prince in succession to remove Spencer from the ship, Spencer and Alexandra get separated; they promise to meet each other again in Montana.

Also Read: The law against miscegenation in 1923 season 1

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