The final season of Peaky Blinders will have to deal with at least a partial absence of Polly Gray that is likely to have a large effect on Tommy Shelby and the season’s narrative. While Peaky Blinders is coming to an end after season 6, creator Steven Knight has said that a movie will follow in place of a season 7. Knight has also suggested that there is a possibility of spin-off series that will continue to deal with the Shelby family.
Should Polly Be Killed Off Before Season 6?
Again, depending on how far filming had progressed, there might be a temptation for the showrunners of Peaky Blinders to have the character die between seasons. The start of season 2 offers precedence for this, as Freddie Thorne (Iddo Goldberg) was revealed to have passed away from illness in the intervening years, opening the season on the character’s funeral. While Thorne’s death was abrupt, his influence on the world has continued through Ada Thorne’s life as a widow and a single mother.
While this might be a simple logistical solution for Peaky Blinders, it would not be the best choice. Polly Gray is such a central figure who is demonstrated to be a strong survivor; to kill the character entirely off-screen would be a betrayal of the character. It would also, more importantly, not be a fitting send-off for Helen McCrory’s presence in the show when the season has a chance to properly memorialize her instead.
How Season 6 Can Still Give Polly A Happy Ending
Ultimately, it would be best for Peaky Blinders to not kill Polly Gray, instead giving her a happy ending. Polly has been shown to have had a hard life and just within the scope of the show has shown the level of trauma that she has pulled herself through. Having been assaulted, learned of the death of her child, and narrowly survived being hanged, Polly has earned a happy conclusion to her narrative.
Peaky Blinders season 5 ends with the violent murder of the man that she had recently accepted as her fiancé, Aberama Gold (Aidan Gillen). This on top of the widening gyre between her and both Thomas Shelby and her son Michael Gray, could easily be explained as a need for her to make a clean break. In season 5, Polly tells Thomas that she may resign her position at Shelby Company Limited once she is married as she cannot tolerate Thomas’ courting of fascism. Previously she has suggested leaving the company and moving to Australia for a fresh start. With Aberama dead, her departure to a new better life could provide a fitting send-off for the character in a way that she could be acknowledged to still be alive somewhere.