Sunday, September 8, 2019

The Irish Mackstop

Season 24, Episode 2
First aired September 5, 2019

It’s a peaceful morning in Ros na Rún, by which I mean nobody is being shoved screaming into a police car, burning down a building, or threatening to jump off a roof yet. Still, these people are very resourceful, so we should give them time. We open with an annoyed Mack ignoring a series of phone calls and texts from Katy, and we get the impression that this has been going on for some time, and also that the mental hospital should perhaps supervise their “more fragile” patients’ phone use more closely. The latest text asks “Have you seen the DNA test yet? [eggplant emoji eggplant emoji].” That last part is implied. He pulls the scrap of paper with her email login and password out of his pocket, considers chucking it in the bin, but then sits down at the table where someone’s “Masha” brand laptop has presumably been downloading and installing Windows updates for the past eleven hours. Masha: The Computer Made By Albanians For Albanians. Just as he’s about to enter the password to Katy’s email account, Dee bursts in with a gaggle of children, at least 80 percent of whom were fathered by Mack, so he slams the laptop shut, which of course makes it look like he was looking at porn.


Elsewhere, a drug deal reminiscent of the one in the opening credits is happening in the street. Upon closer inspection it turns out to be Sorcha slipping Briain a scrap of paper— which may or may not have been ripped out of the same pad as Katy was using at the hospital the other day—with the name of someone she knows at So You Ran Over An Old Lady Motors. He’ll be able to get Briain a mirror for his 1982 Reliant Robin to replace the one that broke off in Jude’s torso, she explains. Just then Berni pops out of a doorway and hilariously bugs her eyes out at the sight of her intermittent soulmate fraternizing with the enemy. She flies up in Sorcha’s face and starts screaming at her, hissing that she warned her not to show her face around here again. I knew the people of Ros na Rún would regret that referendum that gave Berni the right to decide who can and cannot exist. Furthermore, she rants, she can’t believe she was so stupid as to give Sorcha another chance after all the other times she has screwed things up and caused drama. It always pains me to admit when Berni is right about something, but this is one of those times. Berni says that trouble follows Sorcha wherever she goes, which is rich coming from the woman who has been almost murdered by half the people she's ever met. Anyway, Berni concludes she is done with Sorcha, DONE! Of course everyone else who has ever met Berni, including Briain and Evan, would be thrilled to think she was DONE with them forever, but Sorcha looks sad, and after Berni storms off, she and Briain exchange pained glances, which in Briain’s world constitutes foreplay.


Friday, September 6, 2019

Sometimes You Feel like a Nut, Sometimes You Don't (Season Premiere)

Season 24, Episode 1
First aired September 4, 2019

We’re back for another season of thrills, chills, and windmills in our favorite Connemara crazytown, Ros na Rún! You may recall that before we left for the summer, all hell was breaking loose: Briain and Sorcha had sex as foreplay to get them in the mood to hit-and-run Jude; Andy, in the role of Che Guevara, extorted tremendous amounts of money from Michelle; and Vince, Caitríona, and Maeve went to Tayto Park! Oh, also a screaming Katy got hauled off to the mental hospital in a police car while foaming at the mouth and clawing at the glass. So, a typical Thursday in Ros na Rún.


We open at the hospital, where Katy is sleeping off the six to eight tranquilizer darts it took to get her into the bed in the first place. It’s nice that they gave her a bed with linens that have clearly never been used before and in fact still have the straight-out-of-the-package creases in them. She starts muttering Jay’s name and then wakes up to look confusedly around the room, calling out “Jay!” again, although I suppose it is also possible she is trying to ask someone, “Cad é mar atá tú?” but loses consciousness halfway through the question.


Back in town, Mack drops Jay off at the crÁeche and then a radiant Dee takes his arm and they stroll happily across the road, with baby Bláithín in her stroller, and Dee has that classic I-just-gaslighted-my-sister-into-an-asylum glow about her, that’s for sure.


Monday, May 27, 2019

The Godfather Part IV

Season 23, Episode 75
First aired May 21, 2019

We open today’s tale of vague thuggery and pointed bitchery at Caitríona’s, which coincidentally is Europe’s primary exporter of both of those things. She’s not there, though, apparently off on a bad-will tour of the county, but Vince and Michelle are. Normally this would make things more pleasant, but Michelle is skittish and distracted, and though Vince tries to be sunny and cheerful, she and her glum ponytail are having none of it. You can tell things are bad because she didn’t even have the energy to put on her headband today. I was starting to assume it was tattooed on, really. Eventually Vince leaves, having failed to recruit Michelle to sub for him today as Caitríona’s personal social worker, and then Michelle gets a text from Andy demanding his money or he’s going to start breaking her everything. She looks scared and then goes over and dramatically locks the front door. Another option would be calling the police, but we’ll go with this, I guess.


Over on Daly Estates, Cóilí Jackie and Noreen have come to visit Dee, presumably separately since we can’t imagine she would allow him in her car. She’s being all sweetness and light, thanking him for saving the baby’s life by helping Dee give birth in that ditch and so on. If he really wanted to be helpful he would’ve told her it would be a lot easier for the baby to come out of she weren’t sitting up, a problem he rarely has with his cows. I will give you a moment to picture a vertical cow standing on end like a child’s drawing rotated 90 degrees before we proceed. Anyway, Cóilí Jackie appears to be understanding about 30 percent of what is being said, which is pretty good for a non-Donegal character in a scene full of Dalys, and everyone is having a lovely time until he brings up the fact that Dee’s asked him to be Bláithín’s godfather, at which point Noreen develops a sudden case of diarrhea face and stops talking for the first time ever.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

A Romantic Bottle of Wine by Gaslight

Season 23, Episode 72
First aired May 9, 2019

Aaaand we’re back! A lot has happened since the last time I was able to recap, much of which involved Michelle being in every scene for no apparent reason, but I will try to catch you up as we go along. We open at Gaudi, which is somehow still in business, just as a power outage plunges the place into darkness. Pádraig arrives and asks Katy why she’s standing at the till in the dark, which at first seems a stupid question, but then we remember that he’s been watching her Dee-facilitated descent into madness for a while and probably just figures this is the next logical step, after ordering 600 lbs. of beef instead of 60 but before getting into an argument with a jar of olives.


At their place, Berni and Briain are discussing the fact that Jude kept them up half the night, and it’s clear they are both fed up with this shite but know they will go to hell if they say it out loud. He presents her with a spa gift certificate and says they’ll go there this afternoon, and you can tell he’s serious because it’s from a legitimate spa in Galway and not just Gráinne kicking you in the spine at Loinnir. He even volunteers Bobbi Lee in absentia to look after Jude while they’re gone, but Berni reminds her that Bobbi Lee has an appointment to see a fortuneteller today, which is apparently a thing she does now. Briain’s suggestion that perhaps Evan could get his arse over here and acknowledge his grandmother’s existence for a change goes nowhere, because, as Berni explains, Evan finds Jude eepy-cray, and is also selfish. Briain frowns a lot at this, which history tells us means he and Evan will be wrestling in the street in the next 15 minutes.


Friday, May 3, 2019

Recaps resuming week of May 6

The craziness that's severely limited my recapping for the past couple of months has mostly passed, so I'm planning to resume recapping the show next week! Watch this space for new recaps soon and thanks for your patience!

Monday, April 29, 2019

8 Questions with Pól Ó Griofa

If you’ve read and paid attention to any of my recaps—which: apologies again for being too busy to do them lately!—you’ve probably noticed that Mack is one of my favorite characters. He’s been involved in so many of the biggest and best storylines the past few years, and wherever there’s excitement to be had in Ros na Rún, Mack usually isn’t too far away. So I’m thrilled to be able to share a new Q&A with Pól Ó Griofa, the man who brings Mack Ó Riain to life! Pól is one of my absolute favorite actors, not just on Ros na Rún but in general, and he manages to careen between comedy and drama so effortlessly he makes it look easy. Let’s find out what makes the man tick!


Sunday, February 17, 2019

Daly Descent into Madness: Katy Edition

Season 23, Episode 47
First aired February 12, 2019

Today, on a very special Ros na Rún, everyone expresses their emotions honestly and constructively and honors themselves and those around them by acting in ways that reaffirm human dignity and show compassion and empathy to all. Ha ha, I’m kidding, everyone is a complete fucking basket case as always.

We open with a montage of various people flipping through a prop magazine printed on an extremely stiff paper stock that is definitely used by a lot of actual magazines, that’s for sure. The pasted-on photo that catches first Dee’s and then Tadhg’s eye features Jason in a tux with a pretty blonde woman identified as his “partner,” Somebody Ní NotKaty from Cork. I should point out that Dee and Tadhg are looking at their magazines in their respective kitchens, although I do enjoy the mental image of the two of them hanging out flicking through magazines and pointing out hairstyles they do and do not think would look good on themselves. Anyway, there is a lot of eyebrow raising, presumably because they subscribed to Hiya! magazine to see photos of celebrities, not Effing Jason, but then Tadhg is interrupted by Frances, who has let herself in to argue pointlessly with him about how they need to divide their assets and, you know, get divorced already. He’s rude and dismissive before walking out on her, and she sighs loudly and looks surprised, because she has never met him before.

Over at the café, intermittent hoodlums Sorcha and Adam are celebrating the fact that she has completed her extensive health and safety training and been certified by the EU to start pumping gas today. I hope there is money in the special effects budget for the inevitable fiery explosion we get when she flicks her lit cigarette at a puddle of spilled gasoline to “burn it off.” Cóilí Jackie arrives and she starts haranguing him because he is dressed inappropriately (i.e., the exact same way he is always dressed) for his court date today, and he pahs and bahs that he’s not going because they’ll fine him either way, and also he’s curious whether failure to appear is a misdemeanor or a felony or what.