In ‘Anatomy of a Scandal,’ which is an anthology thriller drama series developed from the 2018 namesake novel by Sarah Vaughan, the relationship between James (Rupert Friend) and Sophie Whitehouse (Sienna Miller) is intertwined with the main narrative. They are both privileged and entitled people. The only variable factor is the degree of these things. They have been together since they were in Oxford and seem to have a happy marriage — that is, until the truth about his actions begins to come out. And even then, she initially remains steadfast in her support. She is heartbroken by his infidelity but refuses to accept that he is capable of raping and sexually assaulting someone.
There are three main characters in the show — James, Sophie, and Kate Woodcroft (Michelle Dockery). As James and Kate both have things to hide, Sophie offers the most perceivable point of view among them. Often, she even makes startling discoveries along with the audience. If you are wondering whether Sophie stays married to James after learning the whole truth, this is what you need to know. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Do Sophie and James Stay Together?
No, Sophie and James don’t stay married. Their relationship started when they were both in Oxford. They were good-looking young individuals belonging to the same social circle. The attraction was imminent. At the time, James was part of an all-male exclusive group called the Libertines. This is where he and future prime minister Tom Southern became lifelong friends. James and Sophie got married and went on to have two children. When the story begins, he is a Member of the Parliament and a home office minister in Southern’s Tory government.
James and Sophie’s relationship start to fall apart when it is revealed that he had an affair with his political aide Olivia. Things become even worse when Olivia accuses him of raping her during their last encounter at the House of Commons. James vehemently denies this. He is removed from the cabinet but doesn’t lose the support of the Prime Minister. Sophie also remains in his corner.
However, as the series progresses, Sophie starts to notice things about her husband that she previously hadn’t. His parents trained him to be an excellent liar, which admittedly is a useful tool in politics. But the fact that he was having a secret affair proves that he was lying to Sophie as well. Sophie’s opinion of her husband changes further when she discovers that he has been accused of raping Holly Berry, who used to be her study partner at Oxford. Eventually, she realizes who her husband exactly is.
His sense of entitlement is so colossal that it didn’t register in his mind that consent was withdrawn both times. When confronted with the truth, he still keeps denying them. But that isn’t the case for Sophie. After James receives the not guilty verdict, Southern tells him that he will soon be back into the cabinet. And Sophie simply finds it to be unacceptable. She not only leaves James but also orchestrates the potential downfall of the Southern government.
In one of the final scenes, Sophie is shown vacationing with her children in what appears to be Corsica. Throughout the series, both Sophie and James keep having flashbacks of their family vacation to the French island. The fact that James is absent in that scene clearly implies that he has separated from his family.