A great pity that, by the time this episode aired, Hammond/Beamish was probably no longer with the show. The Lt. disappears after episode 27 - along with all the New Providence sequences. Wholesale cutting out of all the characters associated with the Island as the Powers That Be decided this was to be more about Privateers at Sea and going to different ports. Beamish is mentioned in passing once to set the subsequent direction of the show away from New Providence but still in the Acting Governor's service.
In "Conquest" we see a totally in-command Lt. Beamish. There are no "milquetoast/befuddled Beamish" moments at all. He's in charge and doesn't falter.
He's also absolutely gorgeous in his "poet's" shirt and he knows it. He struts and sweeps and swordplays and shows a considerable amount of decent looking bare chest. And even manages to be sultry in the prison scenes. Shaw's Dan Tempest, on the other hand, seems almost bland in comparison.
One of the better-written episodes, almost no plot holes. Strong support from everyone in the cast wsith fine interaction.
So. Just what was in Hammond's contract? Was some Director determined with remaking the character or did Hammond demand a long-overdue remake of the Lt.? Whatever came about, the last few episodes that see Beamish, present a matured, harder man.
Had the show gone on in this direction, what the sparks could have ignited! This man had to have had a considerable fan base of his own in the day.