Saturday, May 14, 2016
Season 20, Episode 74
First aired 10 May 2016
We open today’s saga of betrayal, lies, and Gráinne out in the street, where Bobbi-Lee is enjoying a lovely Berni-free morning until you-know-who shows up and spoils it. It seems Bobbi-Lee is now working in the café to pay off that li’l ol’ €3000 credit card misunderstanding, and she’s now 20 minutes late, which by Bobbi-Lee’s standards constitutes being early, so I’m not sure what Berni is so bent out of shape about. Bobbi-Lee has been trying to reach Andy by phone for the past 4 days, and is worried that he’s fallen somewhere, such as down a well or under a bus, but loving sister Berni doubts it, orders her to go clean the toilets, and then looks extremely pleased with herself. I am pretty sure “Berni” is Irish for “Mother Teresa.”
At home, Mo stumbles over a suitcase, and is probably terrified that Katy has moved back in, but then Mack appears with Gráinne in tow! And I love Gráinne, although it’s a good thing the episode description on tg4.ie spoiled her return or else I might not have recognized her, at least not until she started talking.
Back in the elite and exciting world of children’s football, Tadhg reports to Frances and Pádraig that Áine’s team keeps losing, and it’s clear that Three-Toed McGillicuddy or whatever his name is isn’t working out as the coach. They’d better find a solution fast, because when Áine and Réailtín get angry, they get stabby, or at least shoplifty. Frances decides she and Pádraig should take Áine with them on today’s driving lesson, and I’m not a parent, but if I were, I’m sure I would think it was a great idea to let my small child ride around in a car with an unlicensed motorist who’s failed his driving test six times.
At Gaudi, Mack and Katy are squabbling about last week’s revenge sex when Jason storms in in a huff about something nobody cares about. He thinks they look suspicious, so they reassure him they don’t, and if they did, it sure wouldn’t be because last week they did it on the floor, and possibly also on Mo’s bed just to spite her. Jason goes back to wherever he came from and Katy hisses at Mack that he needs to stop acting so suspicious and nervous, which will of course make him act more suspicious and nervous, and it’s become clear that asking Mack to keep a secret is like asking Máire to loosen up and do a little coke.
Over at the café, Bobbi-Lee is in full Cinderella mode, wiping her brow as she comes out of the loo with a mop and probably a foot fungus. On the bright side, I’m almost positive this is how Shania Twain got started. Evil stepsister Berni tries to send her back in there to mix bleach and ammonia, but Bobbi-Lee is too busy worrying about Andy to care whether it’s safe to go in there without wellies and a typhoid vaccine. She announces she’s going to call the Gardaí and whips out her cellphone, which she hilariously attempts to dial without removing her giant rubber gloves, but Berni stops her and snots, in a very “Isn’t it obvious that this is what I was going to do??!?” tone, that Andy’s long gone by now because she gave him a huge pile of “go away” cash.
Gráinne is squeaking enthusiastically to Mo about the dreamy hunk she’s doing in London these days, who is MUCH better than dumb ol’ David, whom she can’t believe she ever had a crush on, and by the way, IS DAVID SEEING ANYONE? Oh, Gráinne. Mo shares the funny funny news about how David has been sniffing around Bobbi-Lee, which Gráinne finds
soul-crushing. Well, honey, you couldn’t expect him to keep his karate-based
charms to himself once you left for the bright lights and Oyster cards of
London. She proclaims that there’s no future in Ros na Rún, what with all its losers
and doomed couples and Bobbi-Lees, so she’s going to take Mo back to London
with her and find her a man.
At the pub, Bobbi-Lee has called in sick with a bad case of the “monthlies,” which Tadhg notes she has on a biweekly basis now. My theory is that Katy has subcontracted her monthlies out to Bobbi-Lee now that she is totally pregnant. He informs Frances that she’ll have to cover her shift, but she argues that she can’t because she’s too busy not wanting to, and then there’s a long, involved conversation about Áine having a playdate with Pádraig or something. More on that later, if we must.
Back at Mo’s, Gráinne is still busily soliloquizing about how she has many interests, but David’s nether regions are not among them, that’s for sure. I suspect I should create a macro that inserts “Oh, Gráinne,” because I have a sinking feeling I’m going to be typing it a lot. She wonders if he really slept with Bobbi-Lee, and Mo doesn’t think so, because he didn’t spend the next week with a grin on his face and a full-body cast. Mo tries to change the subject by telling Gráinne she’ll have to politely decline her kind invitation to move to London with her, which was really less of an invitation and more of a kidnapping threat.
Berni runs into Mack in the shop and brags about the fact that she’s got Bobbi-Lee working for her now, and you can tell she’s just loving this. He reveals that she must not be working too hard, because she was just looking for a hackney into Galway. Heh. Berni storms off in a cloud of pursed lips and burning brimstone as Jason arrives and another discussion of whether Mack looks suspicious breaks out, this time accentuated by Jason thanking him for “taking care of Katy” the other night. Snerk. Jason reveals that he is thinking of doing the nasty with Katy’s embryos, which makes Mack look sick/confused/handsome. He tries to talk Jason out of it with the argument that having a baby is “complicated,” and it reminds me of the thing I absolutely adore about Bobbi-Lee, which is when she supports her position by presenting into evidence a thing she saw on TV one time that she is probably making up. In this case, it would probably be that she saw a film about someone who fertilized an embryo and then only three days later got into a car accident and died.
Speaking of the unofficial fourth Dixie Chick, Bobbi-Lee is sitting at home watching TV, presumably gathering evidence for arguments she will have in future episodes, although in this case she appears to be watching a documentary about flowers and so its usefulness may therefore be limited. Berni appears in a huff, which causes Bobbi-Lee to make a hilarious “not this again” face that tells you everything you will ever need to know about their relationship. They squabble for a bit about Bobbi-Lee being a lazy naïve thief and Berni being a bitter judgmental sourpuss, and Bobbi-Lee accuses her of having a heart of stone for chasing Andy away, which I think is generous because it assumes there is a heart in there under all that superiority and vinegar. Berni commands her to return to the café, to which Bobbi-Lee responds with a defiant smile and a simple, pleased-with-herself “Nîl,” which is my favorite moment of the whole episode. Berni threatens to call the Gardaí, because of course they have nothing better to do than to deal with her nonsense, but then Andy appears and announces how insulting her bribe was. He says he was going to leave, but then fainted in the house and spent three days in the hospital, so Bobbi-Lee fetched him and brought him home, like when Downton Abbey became a hospital that time. Let’s imagine for a moment how much better Downton Abbey would’ve been with Bobbi-Lee as one of the sisters. Andy puts on his saddest, most pathetic expression, and even his crutch sheds a tear, and Berni’s lips disappear so completely I think they’ve been sucked into a parallel dimension.
And now there is a convoluted sub-sub-subplot involving Áine and Pádraig’s playdate and a possibly imaginary American classmate and Tadhg ranking all the villages of Ireland from most to least annoying, and Áine and Réailtín stealing the new footie coach’s hearing aid. It eventually ends with Tadhg being reappointed team manager, so I will skip the other eleven scenes this episode it takes us to get there.
Katy tracks Mack down in the pub and hisses at him to mind his own business, because now Jason is having second thoughts about EmbryoFest. Apparently Mack’s argument that it would be “complicated” was more convincing than I thought. He tells her they shouldn’t even be thinking about having a baby given that just last week she was having revenge sex because she and Jason were broken up, and now they’re talking about having a baby together, and doesn’t that seem effed up? One point for Mack. Katy’s response is that he’s a big dumb stupidhead and needs to sort it out.
Berni arrives home to Bobbi-Lee Nightingale’s Honky-Tonk Hospital with a doctor in tow, but instead of sexy Easter Island head Dr Tiarnán, it’s some doctor we’ve never seen before, which isn’t at all suspicious storywise. Anyway, Berni says this is the local doctor, and she’s brought her here to examine Andy. D’oh!
After the break, during which Jennifer Aniston explains to us the health benefits of rubbing oatmeal on your face, Gráinne is giving Mo a candlelight head massage and trying to conjure a hunky boyfriend into existence, but Mo is skeptical, by which I mean Mo had forgotten about Gráinne and her mobile séance lab. Just as the chair lifts off the floor and cutlery starts flying around the room, Mack appears, and given he is a muggle, the magical voodoo is spoiled. (And the word “muggle” is the limit of my Harry Potter knowledge, except I think there is also a magical Tube station on the DLR near Canary Wharf that is the portal to the wondrous land of Walford.)
Sketchy New Doctor is asking Berni if Andy knew about her visit, and says she can’t examine him without his permission. Berni, of course, thinks this is a violation of the UN Declaration of Universal Berni Meddling, and is going to mount a protest to the Security Council that will consist of her yelling “Gabh mo leithscéal?” in offended disbelief and then doing whatever she wants anyway.
Berni joins Bobbi-Lee and Andy in the bedroom, which is much less “oo-er missus” than it sounds, and tells him that the doctor wants to make sure he’s “happy” to be examined by her. “Happy” is a relative term when applied to a surprise medical exam, especially if there are latex gloves involved. Bobbi-Lee can’t believe Berni needs a second opinion on his condition, which leads to a delightful walk down memory lane revisiting some of Andy’s best lies and scams over the years. It’s too bad this isn’t a montage of old footage accompanied by Kirsty MacColl’s “Days.” Eventually the two women pause in arguing over him as if he’s not there, and he announces that he’s got nothing to hide, and that she can send Sketchy New Doctor in, which clearly shoves a potato in Berni’s tailpipe.
There is more of Pádraig and Áine’s playdate, during which she is introduced to the concept of the little white lie, which knowing her she’ll be putting to good use before long, probably in a courtroom. Then we’re back at Berni’s, where Sketchy New Doctor emerges from the bedroom and confirms Andy’s diagnosis of African Hydraulic Fever. A sputtering Berni questions her, but she says she left her portable CT-scan-ometer at the surgery and doesn’t feel up to dissecting Andy’s brain in the sitting room, but that she’s quite sure. Bobbi-Lee is a lot less “suck it!” than we might’ve expected her to be, but Berni continues to protest, and Sketchy New Doctor, whose glasses and hairdo I find very suspicious, tells her she’s just going to have to accept the fact that her brother is sick.
Meanwhile, at Love’s Young Dream, Jason and Katy and Mack and Dee are having dinner together at Gaudi, which seems like an idea neither Katy nor Mack would agree to at the moment, but OK. The two of them are very interested in discussing embryo fertilization, whereas Jason is more interested in talking about Gráinne, and Dee doesn’t give two shits about any of it, so there is brainless chitchat and a bunch of awkward glances across the table. Mercifully it doesn’t go on too long, because it’s almost making me wish we’d go back to the kiddie football storyline.
Back at Honky-Tonk Hospital, Berni is fuming that the doctor’s diagnosis doesn’t change anything, and that Andy still has to go, so there is back and forthing. Bobbi-Lee tries to play on Berni’s sympathy and compassion, because apparently she has never met Berni, but eventually she wears her down and Berni says Andy can stay, but only on the condition that nobody can know he’s there, especially Máire and Peadar. Well, that’s going to make it hard for him to slop out the toilets at the café. Berni’s eyes are rolled back in her head so far she can probably see her brain, and then she’s surprised when Andy returns the bribe money, explaining that he never intended to keep it.
There’s more of the football thing, and then Andy, reclining on the bed in Berni’s spare room, gets a phone call. He walks across the room, carrying but not using his crutch, and tells the person on the other end that it’s about time he/she called, because he needs another prescription so everything will look just right. He says he’ll soon be rolling in cash, then hangs up the phone, tosses his crutch across the room, and plops down on the bed, laughing triumphantly. And just like that, our worst fear has come true: that Berni will now get to say “I told you so” about this for the next 80 years.
Next time: Francis Brennan has come to Gaudi, and after looking up who the hell he is, I can tell it’s exciting! And some of the actors will be speaking English, which always produces “unrecognized input: DOES NOT COMPUTE” sensory disconnect in me, like the first time I saw Daithí Mac Suibhne speaking it on Fair City.