Sunday, February 28, 2016

Mack The Knife

Season 20, Episode 53
First aired 25 Feb 2016

We open in the hospital, where Mack is in bed waiting for surgery. Mo and John Joe show up to visit, with John Joe helpfully volunteering that he was already there to drop off some papers at the morgue. The morgue is really what you want to hear about when you’re in the hospital about to be operated on. Of course John Joe and Mack start talking about how hot the nurse is, and Mo is all, “Seriously with this?” There is a long weird lingering shot on Mack, the first of numerous editing and timing oddities this episode.

In the village, Micheál, Frances, and Réailtín run into David and Rónán, who are on their way to court. They tell Rónán he looks nice in his suit, and he grumps that there’s no point since everybody knows he’ll be going to prison anyway. Even Réailitín has had it with his nonsense. David and Rónán leave and O’Shea, who’s looking glum even by her standards, shows up. She tells the group that Judge Molloy is presiding today and that ever since his niece was killed in a road accident, he’s shown little leniency “in cases like this.” Does anyone even remember what Rónán is charged with at this point? Everyone struggles to look concerned.

At Peadar and Máire’s, Fia is complaining to Evan that she told Máire not to give the baby a soother, but that Máire never listens to her. Evan, of course, is completely over Fia and tells her she can always raise the baby the way she wants if she admits she’s his mother. They argue for a bit. Fia is wearing eleven crazy clashing patterns, black spandex boy shorts, and turquoise leggings. I wish I knew where Fia buys her clothes so I could make sure my friends never go there.

At the shop, Máire is picking up the DNA test results from the post office. She announces to no one in particular that soon she’ll have the answers, then folds the envelope and puts it in her handbag rather than OPENING IT AND READING THE RESULTS like any normal person would do. Well, at least she made room in her handbag by giving Mack all those leaflets about ways he will probably die in the hospital last episode.

Speaking of, back at the hospital Mack is still waiting for surgery. John Joe, having told him everything he knows about the morgue, has now switched over to the topic of things the surgeon could accidentally leave inside Mack during the operation. If this funeral director thing doesn’t work out, John Joe could always get a job writing get-well cards. John Joe finally decides to leave and Mo says she’ll walk him out, presumably to make sure he actually goes away. The nurse shows up and reads off her cue cards that the anesthetist will be in shortly, and Mack squirms in fear.

At the café, Berni and Micheál are still discussing Rónán. Things are really dull when Bobbi-Lee and Caitríona aren’t around creating drama. Evan shows up and tells Berni he can’t go to the interview because he just got a call from a very upset Niamh in Dublin and he needs to go be with her. Berni is furious, but Evan leaves and half-heartedly wishes her luck with the interview.

David and Rónán return from court, and Rónán looks victoriously annoyed, reporting that the character references kept him from getting what normally would’ve been a six-month sentence. You know, the character references which presumably said, “Rónán is great except when he’s graffiti-ing the community center and doing a runner.” He has to do 240 hours of community service. Maybe he can be Áine and Réailitín’s personal social worker/probation officer. Labhrás appears and Micheál tells him it should’ve been his nephew in court, not Rónán. For some reason Labhrás doesn’t want to hear this, so he walks away. David takes Rónán to the café, which annoys Rónán, and we end on a long, lingering shot of Micheál, whom we can tell is plotting something because his eyebrows are going up and down, but the shot goes on about 5 seconds too long and it’s just weird. Clearly they had time to kill this episode.

In the café, Katy is still asking John Joe to fix her dodgy car, but he says he can’t because he has a funeral. Tadgh appears from a broom closet and says, in slow-motion Haunted Mansion voice, that Old Micil has died so John Joe needs to go pick up the body, which won’t be a problem since he doesn’t have a funeral today, right? John Joe says he doesn’t, and Tadgh creeps away. Katy, who has been all “What about my car?” this whole time, is now like, “Okay, Dad, what the hell?” John Joe tells her that he “borrowed” some money from Tadgh’s business and is now running secret funerals on the side so he can quietly pay the money back. Katy doesn’t think stealing money from Tadgh is a good idea because Tadgh is, you know, insane. John Joe reveals that he needed the money to pay for Katy’s treatments, which makes her feel worse, but he promises this will be his last funeral scam and then he’s done.

Meanwhile, over at CSI: Máire, she shows Peadar the DNA results, which show a 96% chance of a familial link between Nollaig and Evan. Máire looks smug and pleased with herself, because in her world it’s more important to be right than for things to go well.

Back at the hospital, Mo returns to Mack’s room to find his bed empty, and we imagine Mack running down the street crying, his hospital gown open and flapping at the back. Mo is like, “Oh, not this crap.”

At the café, David and Micheál are arguing over who hates Labhrás more. Micheál reveals that he’s stolen Labhrás’ car keys from his coat pocket, so the two of them leave with Rónán to go make mischief. It will be awesome if they’re planning to cut Labhrás’ brake lines, but sadly that is probably not where this story is going.

O’Shea arrives, and of course Berni comes over to find out the dirt about Niamh and rub O’Shea’s nose in the fact that her daughter is suffering. Remember last episode St. Berni was busy being an inspiration to people suffering from “mental awareness.” Berni giveth, and Berni taketh away. O’Shea tells her that Niamh is off on holiday in France living the high life. Berni is simultaneously disappointed that Niamh is doing well and annoyed that Evan lied.

Peadar stops Evan in the street to tell him that Máire ran a DNA test and that they know about Nollaig. Evan, of course, thinks they’ve discovered the baby’s link to Fia, and there is a bit of mistaken identity that is immediately cleared up as Peadar realizes Fia is the baby’s mother. Once again I appreciate Ros na Rún for not letting storylines drag on too long. If this were EastEnders we would’ve had twelve weeks of this.

After the break, Mo finds Mack leaving the hospital, sadly fully dressed and not barefoot in a hospital gown. He’s scared and has decided he doesn’t need the operation after all, which Mo demonstrates isn’t true by punching him in the hernia or ulcer or whatever is wrong with him. As he picks his guts up off the floor, she assures him things will be fine.

In the village, Labhrás’s car is getting booted. He protests that he didn’t park there, but the parking enforcer ignores him. Micheál, David, and Rónán stand by laughing. Because, you know, when you’ve just gotten out of court and been sentenced to community service, it’s a good idea to immediately get involved in a temporary car theft. The three of them walk away laughing, and Micheál gives Labhrás his keys back. You can see the gears in Labhrás’s head turning as he works out what happened.

At Gaudi, Tadgh wonders why John Joe is rushing around when he doesn’t have a funeral until much later. OR DOES HE?

Evan tells Peadar he doesn’t know who Nollaig’s father is, and that they shouldn’t tell Máire anything because she’ll just call Vanessa, which will upset Fia even more. Berni appears, and Evan groans “For frig’s sake,” which is the natural response to seeing Berni these days. She tells him she knows he lied about Niamh, and Evan tells her to drop it with the interview crap. She chases him out into the street and doesn’t understand why he wants to pass up the opportunity for them to tell their side of the story. She’s wearing a hat like a tea cosy. Evan tells her that he killed Cathal!

Back at their house, Peadar is telling Máire about Evan running out to escape Berni. Máire is sure he’s off snorting cocaine off a stolen motorbike with his friends and says she’s going to call Berni to tell her Nollaig is Evan’s son. Peadar delays her by asking if Fia is there, but Máire hilariously tells him that she sent her away because Fia is annoying. You think so too, huh? She says she doesn’t understand why Fia is so obsessed with Nollaig, and then tells the baby that his father will be there soon to take him away. Of course Fia, who has been off applying makeup with a trowel, overhears this and looks alarmed.

At Berni’s, Evan tells her that he punched Cathal in the head because he saw Berni in the car covered in blood. Cathal came at him, so Evan punched him and he fell and hit his head on the concrete. Evan worries that this world-famous top crime reporter (!) who’s writing this story must know the truth and be out to expose Evan, but Berni tells him no, he’s just writing this story because of Caitríona’s stupid book. Evan is wracked with guilt, so Berni reassures him she’ll give him all the help and support he needs. Yes, because when I think of Berni, I think “helpful” and “supportive.”

Back at the hospital, Mack’s surgery was a success, and he brags to Jason (who is there for some reason) that he wasn’t nervous at all. Mo gives him the side-eye. After Jason leaves, Mack tells Mo that he owes her, because the doctor said that if he hadn’t had the surgery when he did, it could’ve been very dangerous. Mack says he’ll make it up to Mo, but she says there’s no need, and they have a lovely moment. They really are one of the best pairs on the show.

At Gaudi, John Joe tells Katy that the secret off-the-books funeral was a success, and now he’s made enough money that he can stop this sneaking around. Katy tells her she doesn’t want him getting into trouble on her behalf, and he promises he’s done. She walks off and his phone immediately rings, and as soon as she’s out of earshot he sets up another secret funeral. Well, this will end well.

Back at her flat, Máire discovers, after talking to him for about 30 seconds, that Nollaig isn’t in his cot. Peadar doesn’t know where the baby is, but then he finds a note on the counter from Fia. She’s gone, and she’s taken Nollaig with her!

Next time: Mack tells Dee that he’s miserable without her, but she doesn’t care, because he’s dishonest!

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