Thursday, October 27, 2016

Fake It Till You Bake It

Season 21, Episode 15
First aired 25 October 2016

We begin upstairs at the pub, where Tadhg has spent the day uninstalling the booby traps set by Áine, who is trying to Home Alone Pól, Andy, and any other “bold men” who might invade. He facetiously instructs her that you’ve really got to hide the rope better if you’re going to trip and/or garrote someone in a doorway, and she amusingly complains that she would if she were provided with better rope. You can’t argue with that. He asks her if she wants Mommy and Daddy to get hurt in one of her traps, and she’s basically like, “What’s the Irish word for ‘collateral damage?’” He then asks if there are any other traps around the house, and just as she says “Níl,” we hear a series of crashes and a yelp and Frances screaming “Áine!” off in the distance. Hee.

At the café, Mack is on the phone with someone about buying a minibus in a color I might generously call “space-vomit green” when David shows up, and they have a discussion about how David’s ring, which is on the table for some inexplicable reason, seems to have brought Mack more luck than it ever did David. Off in London somewhere, Gráinne is feeling an odd cosmic shiver emanating from her close-call escape from Hurricane David. He muses on how expensive weddings are, but Mack assures him that theirs will just be a meal in a hotel with family and a few friends and nothing more. David is skeptical, because women be crazy and so on, but Mack assures him that Dee is extremely sensible and does not at all be crazy. Cut to the newsagents, where we see the first issue of Dee’s Wedding, a new weekly 400-page glossy magazine that costs €25.

And right on cue, we actually do cut to the other side of the café, where Dee is going through a glossy wedding mag with Bobbi-Lee, who is apparently her friend now. Dee points to something she loves, possibly a gold napkin ring or platinum bunion pad, and Bobbi-Lee squawks that you could buy a car for that price. Dee protests that she’s only getting married once, so she might as well make sure Mack’s financial ruin is complete and irreversible, but Bobbi-Lee, ever the voice of reason, reminds her that Liz Taylor probably said the same thing. She leaves out the part where she and Liz are besties, of course, because that would be bragging. Dee then frets that arranging this wedding is going to drive her mad, so Bobbi-Lee, who realizes at this moment that her lifelong dream has always been to be a wedding planner, points out that wedding planners are, like, a thing, and all you have to do is pay them a tremendous amount of money. Dee claims this never occurred to her, because apparently she is stupid all of a sudden, and then says she’ll have to see who her friend Geena Kennedy recommends. We can tell already that this Geena Kennedy is a right little madam, and Bobbi-Lee may need to exterminate her.

Máire’s friend/social worker/probation officer Aunt Sally or whoever appears in the kitchen of the B&B with her suitcase, and I genuinely have no idea whether she’s coming or going anymore. Máire offers to put the kettle on, but Sally suddenly makes a big production out of looking at her wrist and exclaiming that it’s time for her to start baking. I am unconvinced that she is actually wearing a watch, but I suppose that’s neither here nor there. It seems Labhrás has organized a bake sale and invited Sally to be the star baker, and Máire is pooed, because everyone knows she is the only star baker in the village. We gloss over a discussion Labhrás and Sally had about her buns, for which we are all grateful, and then Máire and Sally roll up their sleeves and are either about to start baking or start punching each other. I know where my vote is!

Back at the pub, Frances produces a cardboard box full of flamethrowers, machine guns tied to strings, piranhas on sticks, etc., and fumes to Tadhg that she better not find any more booby traps around the house or Áine is going to be in big trouble. The best part is that there is actually a tinsel pompom, and I am dying to know how Áine was using it as a weapon. She calls Áine into the kitchen for some quality mother-daughter whining-and-arguing time, and eventually Tadhg tells Áine she almost hurt her mother, so she better knock it off. She whips her plastic sword off her back and throws it angrily in the box, informing her parents that she hates them before storming out of the room.

Speaking of people who hate their parents, over at the Daly household, Katy snots at John Joe that she’s moving out because she can’t stay there any longer having to look at the happy couple. Dee and Mack are gross, of course, and Jason is a big meanie, and also a pee-pee head. John Joe points out that she’s not going to have any peace of mind until she finds out who the father is, and we’d forgotten that he knew there was a question about that, so we’re glad of the reminder. He suggests she take a paternity test, and she looks annoyed. She should use that great DNA test Máire used last season, which always says that Evan is the father.

Mo is in her bathrobe watching TV on the sofa, and given the cobwebs, we get the impression that this has been going on for a while. Bloody Peatsaí wanders in to harass her about going outside, to which she is strenuously opposed, and then tells her she needs to go out there and fight to get her job back. This would be a good time for her to point out that she hasn’t seen him doing a lot of work lately, but instead she tells him to frig off, which is even better. He argues that she’s at least entitled to redundancy pay, and there seems to be an outbreak of stupidity in the village today, because this had not occurred to her.

Dee is walking around town carrying a bouquet of flowers larger than her torso, and when she runs into her dad, she explains that they’re from Geena Kennedy’s mother Marjorie, who we’re sure is also a complete wagon, because she’s trying to take on the role of organizing the wedding which rightfully belongs to longtime wedding planner Bobbi-Lee. John Joe seems to agree, as he suggests Marjorie consider minding her own business, but Dee ignores him and brightly notes that the Kennedys think she should have the wedding at the Green Meadows, which sounds like a urine-reeking nursing home, but is apparently a very very expensive hotel. He says they could have it at Óstán na Mara for half the price, which sends Dee into a Category 12 strop, and she storms off in the classic Daly-style.

Back at the B&B, an episode of The Great Irish Bake Off has broken out, and the two finalists are Máire, a busybody from Ros na Rún, and Sally, a motorcycle stunt driver from Somewhere Else. They’re passive-aggressively arguing over butter versus oil and caster sugar versus rat poison, and it goes on for much longer and in more detail than you might expect. Seventeen minutes later, Sally concludes that there’s only one way to determine whose cake is the best, and that is a knife-fight to the death in the street a blind taste-test by an impartial judge.

At the pub, Pól is giving Bobbi-Lee a bunch of attitude, and she tells him if he keeps it up, she’ll toss him out on his arse. Don’t get our hopes up with promises like that if you’re not going to keep them, Bobbi-Lee. Frances and Áine swing through on their way to the dentist and the toyshop, where they’re going to buy books and puzzles, which of course causes Bobbi-Lee to give a stinkyface as if they’re buying eye of newt and leg of spider. Books, ewww. Just then, Pól shouts at someone’s voicemail, presumably poor dumb Rónán’s, that he’s waited for him long enough and is going to kill him when he sees him, as friends do, and then storms out of the pub, punching a stool over on his way out. Áine tells her mother that Pól is the one who stole money from Bobbi-Lee’s purse yesterday, which after some investigation, turns out to be true. Áine notes that she would’ve stopped him if only she still had her sword, and then gives a mad-eyed stare at a knife Bobbi-Lee was just using to cut fruit, and things are about to get good.

But first, we have to deal with Awful Jennifer, whom Mo has clearly invited to meet her at Gaudi to discuss a business proposition. Mo tells her she’ll have the bookies’ making a profit again in three months if she’s given the chance, but Jennifer is too busy being obnoxious about the fact that it takes Pádraig more than half a millisecond to produce a cup of coffee to listen to her. Mo then asks for the redundancy money to which she’s entitled, which causes Jennifer to go all witchy-poo and hiss that she’ll be sure Mo gets what she deserves. Oh, dear.

Outside, Pól is trying the handles of parked cars, and if you got the Billy Bragg reference there, I seriously love you. He then wanders into what appears to be an alley behind the pub and starts looking for something to steal, sell, or snort, when Áine, who has been following him down the street, confronts him. She tells him he’s going to prison for stealing from Bobbi-Lee, and he’s defiant and gross, so she pulls her knife on him. He, of course, immediately snatches it out of her hand and shoves it in her face, and we go to the break with her making a hilarious expression which suggests that this is not how she imagined this stabbing going down.

After the break, during which I had to watch that stupid advertisement about how you can watch documentaries about trees using the “new” TG4 app SIX TIMES before it would let me continue, Evan has been recruited for the taste test, but Sally complains that he’s biased and will obviously pick his grandmother’s. He agrees that they need to find somebody else because he has absolutely no patience for this nonsense, and we can’t blame him for that.

Back in the alley, Pól is still waving the knife in Áine’s face, and she’s scared, but also defiant, until he steps up the “I’m going to kill you” talk, at which point we can tell she really wishes she were inside pushing Frances down the stairs again. Just then, Rónán appears and punches Pól in the face, sending him reeling to the ground. Áine runs for help, and after struggling to his feet, Pól tries to run away as well, but Rónán floors him with a gigantic knee to the crotch, which is what we’ve all been waiting for, only we wish we could see it again in slow-motion, then backwards and forwards, then accompanied by hilarious Benny Hill music and "sproi-oi-oing! OOF!" sound effects.

Inside the pub, Katy and John Joe are reading up on prenatal DNA testing, but she thinks she’d rather wait till after the baby is born, because that’s how they do it on Jerry Springer. Dee appears with a stack of wedding magazines, so John Joe excuses himself, because weddings are boring. She whines to Katy that she talked to the Green Meadows, but they don’t have any dates available until 2017, which is, like, a whole TWO MONTHS from now! Katy is basically like, “Boo hoo, you dumb bint,” but then when Dee tells her that Mack wants to get married ASAP, she changes her tune and says she really ought to wait until the place she wants is available, especially since that gives Katy more time to break them up.

Back at the B&B, Bloody Peatsaí is playing the part of Mary Berry, and it is boring, and both the cakes look sad and dry and lopsided anyway. This would be much more exciting if the guest judge were that firefighter Mat from the last season of GBBO, because I totally have the hots for him, which is only about 30% a firefighting pun. Rrrowr!

O’Shea is at the pub shouting at Rónán that they’ll need a full statement from him about all this, and the truth this time, and she is absolutely terrifying. She goes upstairs, and Rónán moans to David that he feels guilty about all this, and makes it all about himself, and you know what would be cool? If Mack and Mat from the Bake Off thing got in a wrestling match over, like, who got to go out with me. Wait, what were we talking about?

Back at their place, Bloody Peatsaí is asking Mo if she got her job back, and she points out that she’s very clearly looking at the job vacancies in the newspaper, so what does he think? He weakly offers that there must be plenty of jobs in there for her, but she sadly points out that they all require qualifications, which she doesn’t have. However, because he is an expert on the job market of 2016, he says you don’t need qualifications or skills or knowledge, all you need are confidence and courage, and he advises her to, as the Yanks say, “Fake it till you make it.” I guess I am a bad American because I am quite sure I have never said this. My guess is that people were actually telling him “Get away from me,” but he misheard them. This seems to make her feel better, though, and he says that if she takes his advice, she’ll be making money in no time. Why do I feel like this is going to involve him teaching her how to slip and fall in expensive shops and find lizards in her food at KFC?

O’Shea is finishing up her questioning of Áine, who assures her that she’ll keep an eye out and let her know if there are future crime developments. On her way out the door, O’Shea winkingly tells Frances that they’ll make a Garda out of Áine yet, but Áine tells them she wants to join the FBI instead, because they carry guns. Hopefully Tadhg can go find the ancient clan Ó Direáin .45 somewhere in the attic.

At Gaudi, Mack tries to talk to Dee about the minibus, which we had forgotten about already, but she pays him no mind, because she is fully in Wedding World. She complains that she’s completely overwhelmed by the planning, but he scoffs and says all they have to do is book Óstán na Mara, rent a cake, and bung a few invitations in the mail. Of course by now Dee’s wedding plans involve renting out Buckingham Palace for the weekend and knocking out those throne things to install a light-up dance floor. He tells her they’re not millionaires, but she’s determined that this is going to be the wedding of the century, and because she realizes he doesn’t have the money, she offers to pay for the luxuries. He argues that no, he’ll pay for it, and they do not seem to understand that as soon as they get married there will be no more “his money” and “her money,” so this is all completely pointless. Oy. Mack sadly crumples up the ad for the minibus of his dreams, and Dee gets on the phone with that wagon Geena Kennedy again, presumably to talk about how she will be carried to the church by a flock of snow-white doves with diamonds in their mouths.

Next time: Dee is all up in Mack’s face because she’s spoken to Katy, who told her everything! Mack pretends not to know who Katy is, but somehow I don’t think he’s going to be able to keep that up for long.

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