Fans tuning in to the second episode of Season 9 of Hallmark Channel’s When Calls the Heart expected the worst. In the Season 9 premiere that aired on March 6, Mountie Nathan Grant (played by Kevin McGarry) was hit by a car and badly injured.
Dr. Faith Carter was caring for him at the clinic when Elizabeth (Erin Krakow) came running in to check on him. But when Nathan saw her, he didn’t recognize her, leading many fans to believe he was suffering from amnesia.
But almost immediately during Episode 2, it became apparent that Nathan was just kidding. He knew who Elizabeth was, there was no evident damage to his brain, and he would simply need rest and the doctor’s care to get better.
“…Funny how Nathan pretended he didn’t know Elizabeth!” one fan wrote on the show’s Facebook page. “That should teach us not over-speculate based on previews! Just glad he’s not laying there with no memory.”
Others were taken with Elizabeth’s reaction to Nathan’s injuries. At the end of Season 8, she told him she didn’t want to be involved with him romantically, choosing instead to pursue a relationship with businessman Lucas Bouchard (Chris McNally). But the fact that she was so upset when she heard he was injured signaled to some fans that she might still have serious feelings for him.
“Elizabeth’s reaction to the news of Nathan’s accident spoke volumes,” wrote another fan.
New mayor on When Calls the Heart
Also, during Episode 2, Mike Hickam (Ben Rosenbaum) beat out Bill Avery (Jack Wagner) and Lee Coulter (Kavan Smith) to become Hope Valley’s mayor.
Though Bill and Lee were disappointed, Rosemary cheered Lee up by giving him a job as managing editor of The Valley Voice.
When Mike found out he won, he went right to Fiona (Kayla Wallace) and told her that holding public office while being part owner of Gowen Petroleum would be a conflict of interest. He said he wanted to turn his shares over to her. She was shocked, but it was clear she was ready to take on the challenge by the end of the episode.
Henry’s change of heart
Businessman Henry Gowen (Martin Cummins), who has been Hope Valley’s on-again, off-again villain since Season 1, set the record straight with the town’s children after getting involved in a saloon brawl during the first episode.
After spending the night in jail, he went to the schoolhouse and stood before the students. He explained what led him to attack businessman Jerome Smith in the saloon but said that violence is never the answer.
“If all we do is hurt each other, we all end up in pain,” he said.
Finally, viewers were introduced to a softer side of newcomer Mei Suo (Amanda Wong). When Elizabeth checked on Nathan’s horse, she found Mei there, soothing the animal, who was still skittish from the accident.
When Calls the Heart airs Sundays at 8/7c on Hallmark Channel.