Thursday, January 19, 2017

Sisters of No Mercy

Season 21, Episode 39
First aired 17 January 2017

We open at the community center, where Bobbi-Lee is following Tadhg around begging him to give her back her job, because she really needs someplace to stand around doing nothing on these chilly winter evenings. His response, which I bet means he’s thinking about it, is to hand Frances a “Help Wanted” note to pin to the bulletin board and then stomp off. Bobbi-Lee asks Frances if she can’t do something, but Frances is basically like, “You know Tadhg is insane and terrifying,” and then she points out that Bobbi-Lee doesn’t have any proof she didn’t steal the poitín, so nyaah. Frances giveth, and she taketh away. She leaves, and then Bobbi-Lee puts on her thinking face and snatches the advert off the board.

Katy and Jason return home from Donegal, where they presumably sat around watching Ferdia watch TV, which you may recall Katy pretending to vomit about the last time the topic of going to Donegal came up. It seems they had a lovely time anyway, though Jason notes that Cuán seemed very happy to be returned to the crèche, which makes sense given he is the only one in this family who has any friends anymore. He invites Katy out for lunch, or to go with him to a conference in Limerick he’s got to attend, but she couldn’t possibly, because she’s got a full afternoon lifetime of hiding in the house from Dee to do and can’t reschedule it. He tells her she can’t avoid Dee forever, which she seems to take as a challenge, and when he finally leaves, she winces and rubs her temples, the universal soap opera symbol for “something is wrong with my baby, or I have a brain parasite.”

Berni and Máire are out in the street having a friendly passive-aggressive argument about which of them is the most priggishly downtrodden when Bobbi-Lee stops them to tell Berni about walking in on Máire and Peatsaí’s afternoon delight the other day. Máire is mortified, and it doesn’t help when Bobbi-Lee claims Peatsaí didn’t have a stitch on, which is clearly a lie, or else it’s been so long since she’s seen a naked man that she’s forgotten what one looks like. A gasping Máire goes into a full Status Red head-shaking denial-storm, which amuses Bobbi-Lee and Berni to no end, and it’s hard to blame them, because it’s pretty damn funny.

Having caused all the trouble she can with those two for the moment, Bobbi-Lee proceeds down the street and runs into Topknot, who of course is surly and has an attitude, but she is intrigued when Bobbi-Lee offers her €50 for a bit of information. Well, one can buy a lot of gold hoop earrings with that kind of dosh.

Meanwhile, over at the B&B, Fia is telling Adam how much she dislikes Topknot, and he’s like, “Oh, yeah, she’s the WORST!”, which is finally something we can all agree on. He notes, though, that she may be a horrible human being, but she buys his poitín, so it’s not like he needs to like her. He has a definite head for business and may in fact become the CEO of the Bank of Ireland someday. Just then Máire arrives, so the Trouble Twins start frantically hiding the bottles of poitín, half of which end up in Adam’s backpack and the other half in Liam Óg’s changing bag. Máire suggests she and Fia take Liam Óg to go feed the birds, and when Adam asks if he can join them, she thanks him for his offer, but tells him she would really prefer it if he drop dead immediately. I’m paraphrasing. He leaves, and Fia looks sick to her stomach, and not just because she’s just caught a glance in a mirror of the 18 clashing patterns she is wearing.

Katy is nervously making inane conversation with John Joe, who has dropped by her place to, you know, murder her. He lets her twist in the wind for a bit before finally asking her how she could do such a thing to her sister, and she makes a bunch of excuses about how someone had sneezed amnesia germs on her that day and also the sun was in her eyes, etc. She cries that she’s sorry, and John Joe snaps that she’s always sorry, and that she better stay away from Dee if she knows what’s good for her.

Colm and Laoise flirt in the street, which involves him flexing and talking about how hot he is, and they agree to meet at Gaudi for drinks later. We then shift to the B&B, where Peatsaí and Aunt Or Cousin Sally are flirting even more shamelessly, but at least Peatsaí is not demonstrating how he can crack a walnut with his buttocks. Anyway, they’ve got a plan to surprise Máire by installing some shelves in the bedroom, which I am about halfway sure is not a euphemism.

Katy has tracked Mack down at the community center to give him the breaking news that Dee knows about them, as if this fact would not have come up during the ten days they were off in Italy with no one to fight with but each other. She is weepy, so Mack puts his arm around her and leads her out, and of course Dee chooses this moment to drop by the community center for no reason—I mean, really, does this seem like the kind of place Dee would hang out?—and sees them together.

Máire has called Father Eamonn to the B&B so she can sit him down and have a very serious discussion with him about the terrible, sordid, Bobbi-Lee-induced rumors going around town that, as she puts it, “there are things going on under this roof that shouldn’t be going on.” Of course, just as she’s saying this, we hear Peatsaí and Sally start giggling and carrying on upstairs, and it sounds very bad indeed, because among other things we literally hear him sleazing, “Aren’t you the naughty girl!”, and she giggles some more, and Máire has about five simultaneous heart attacks, and it is all hilarious.

Bobbi-Lee is at the pub waiting for Tadhg to return. Mo tells her she tried to tell him that there’s no way she took the poitín but he just wouldn’t listen, but Bobbi-Lee assures her that he’ll listen now, because she knows who took it. She vows she’ll be back behind the bar by the end of the day, and just then Adam oozes up beside her and orders a cup of coffee, and they exchange smiles. Ooh, this is going to end with either Bobbi-Lee triumphantly bringing Adam to justice in front of everyone or getting herself into some kind of hostage situation, and I honestly can’t decide which I am rooting for more.

After the break, Jason is loading his luggage into the car for his conference in Limerick, which is hopefully about DIY DNA testing, when he spots Dee sitting on a bench looking very sad and alone and, let’s be honest here, absolutely gorgeous. It’s not creepy when I say it because I’m gay and am in fact much more attracted to Jason than I am to her.

Back at the pub, Adam is hissing into Topknot’s voicemail that if she doesn’t show up in the next five minutes, he’s leaving. Just then Tadhg returns from the cash and carry and tells Mo to throw Bobbi-Lee out before he comes back downstairs, which is a scene I would actually kind of enjoy seeing, but Bobbi-Lee tells him she knows who stole the poitín, and he’s sitting right there. They all look over at Adam, which is his cue to split for the door, but he’s too slow and Bobbi-Lee grabs his backpack and pulls out the missing bottles of poitín! It would have been awesome if Adam were a magician and when she opened his bag, a flock of doves and a rabbit had popped out. At this moment he remembers that he’s meant to be at the library studying for an eye test or whatever, but Tadhg grabs his collar and makes it clear that the only place he will be going is to the bathroom in his pants.

Jason has joined Dee on the bench of sadness, and she tells him that she spotted Mack with his arm around Katy earlier. If this were any other soap, a furious Jason would now fly through the streets of town screaming until he found Mack and punched him in the crotch, but instead he quietly tells her that whatever happened between Mack and Katy is over now, but she’s not in such a forgiving mood. She rants for a while, not unreasonably, about how Katy stood beside her at the wedding like butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth, and spits that Katy is nothing but a bitseach, which is a new Irish word I will have to write down in my notebook and work into conversation as much as possible. Jason does not deny that Katy has bitseach-y tendencies, but says that she made a mistake and is very, very sorry. Dee is of the opinion that Katy can take her extreme sorryness and shove it up her extreme arse, to which Jason responds that he understands that she’s rather cross, but that it’s really “not worth getting worked up about.” I don’t know, Jason—if this isn’t worth getting worked up about, I’m not sure what is. Dee concludes that she hates Katy and never wants to see her again, and oh, if we had a dollar for every time she’s said this, we’d be able to buy An Teaghlach and turn it into a topless carwash. (Oops, spoilers!)

Sally has trolloped downstairs to the kitchen and is telling Father Eamonn that Peatsaí has really worked up a thirst and hasn’t even done anything yet, and explains that she thought they’d be finished before Máire got home, but “it seems that Peatsaí hasn’t had much experience.” Snerk. Máire quickly clarifies to the priest that Sally is talking about putting up shelves and shoos her upstairs before she can talk about what a big hammer Peatsaí has, or how she had to keep telling him to use both hands. Relieved that the unsavoriness is over, Máire starts to say goodbye to Father Eamonn, but then the circus comes to town, and it consists of Tadhg dragging Adam in by the ear and declaring he and Fia are booze thieves. Fia apologizes to her grandmother and starts pulling bottles of poitín out of the nappy bag, and Máire is clearly longing for a simpler time when everyone in the village merely thought she and Sally were taking turns banging Peatsaí in every room of the house.

Mack is hanging out at Katy’s, which is clearly not asking for trouble in any way, and she’s complaining that her head hurts while rubbing her stomach (?). There’s a knock at the door, and she disappears offscreen to answer it, and the only thing funnier than Mack’s bug-eyed diarrhea face when he realizes who’s arrived is Dee’s hostile offscreen “Well, HELLO!” Seriously, it’s so brilliant I want to make it my ringtone.

Out in the street, Bobbi-Lee runs into Laoise, who is bent over applying lipstick in the mirror of a parked car, which is always super-classy. Bobbi-Lee wants all the dirt, but Laoise, who looks like a million bucks, feebly protests that she’s just meeting “a friend.” Bobbi-Lee knows all about these types of “friends” because the cable TV package she’s illegally stealing from next door includes the Playboy Channel, so she helpfully pops open a couple of Laoise’s buttons and hoists up her boobs. Oh, Bobbi-Lee, that’s your answer to everything. She disappears in the pub, and Laoise appears momentarily taken aback, but then looks down and realizes that her boobs look AMAZING, so she shrugs and heads for Gaudi.

Fia is sitting in the restaurant performing “alone and sad” as only a 20-year-old can when Pádraig, who is apparently her BFF now (??), puts his hand on her shoulder, leans in, and whispers that since he’s got a few days off, she should come over one night for an evening of tiramisu and DVDs. It is such a good thing that Pádraig is gay, because otherwise this would be unbelievably creepy. Instead, it’s only about 30% creepy. She sadly and vaguely tells him that she doesn’t think she’ll be around much longer, and just then Máire enters and sits at the bar, which doesn’t seem like a very Máire thing to do, but if Dee can hang out at the community center today, I suppose Máire can hang out at the bar at Gaudi. Fia goes up to her and says she’s sorry, to which Máire rolls her eyes, and then she promises that it won’t happen again, because she and Liam Óg are leaving tonight, because it’s best for everyone. And I know I give Fia…just a little shit sometimes, but she is actually very good in this scene, and it’s very sad indeed. She leaves, and then fairy godmother Pádraig stops by to give Máire a very heavy-handed speech about how tough Fia has it, but it’s very nice to have her around, and wouldn’t it hypothetically be awful if Máire turned her back on her someday, such as today? It’s very “thud!”, but we will overlook it because we love Pádraig.

Over at Katy’s, she’s in the foreground wincing and gasping for air while Mack and Dee are in the background having a huge argument. Dee finally throws him out so she can dismember her sister privately, and Katy is clearly in very bad shape, but Dee has approximately zero sympathy for her. Between the gagging and barfing, Katy tries to apologize in a weak, wavering voice, but Dee is having none of it, and instead takes this opportunity to go on a tirade about how Katy has always been jealous of her and always wanted everything Dee had, such as her dolls and Mack’s penis. Katy, who’s retching like she’s just eaten a family-sized beef-and-Guinness pie while riding the Tilt-a-Whirl, is barely keeping herself upright at this point, and starts pleading with Dee that something’s wrong with the baby, and to please call an ambulance. Dee assumes she’s just trying to make herself the victim here by pretending the baby is falling out and reminds her that she’s always been a lying liar who lies, and then storms out as Katy sobs and begs for help. Ouch.

Back at the B&B, Máire is explaining to Fia what a disappointment she is to absolutely everyone, including her poor dead grandfather, but that in spite of her being a terrible person, she will miss her, because she is a noble and loving grandmother. A hackney arrives to take Fia to the bus stop or wherever, and she starts to leave, but then Máire asks her to stay, because she doesn’t want them to fall out over one mistake. Well, it would’ve been nice for you to decide this before Fia spent all that time packing all her ugly clothes, Máire. Máire gives her some money to make the cab go away and she disappears, and I really, really hope Fia is actually taking the money and going out to buy drugs with it.

At the pub, Tadhg is regaling Bobbi-Lee with the heroic story of how he ingeniously got the poitín back from a couple of dumb kids, but she’s more interested in an apology. She even tries walking him through how that would go—“Tá brón orm, a Bobbi-Lee…”—but of course Tadhg would rather kick Áine in the face repeatedly than apologize to anyone ever, so instead she has to settle for getting her job back, as well as a bunch of abuse and threats. By Tadhg’s standards, that’s practically saying “I love you.”

It’s nighttime, and Laoise has brought Colm back to the B&B, theoretically to lend him a book they were talking about, but in reality because she wants him to install her shelves all night long. He’s evasive, but she keeps throwing herself at him, and eventually he tells her she’s lovely, but he’s just not looking for a relationship right now. She’s all, “Who said anything about a relationship?”, and presses herself up against him. My goodness, the B&B has turned into the House of the Rising Sun all of a sudden.

Mack goes to knock on Katy’s door but finds it’s open, so he lets himself inside, where it’s pitch black, and a phone is ringing endlessly on the floor. He asks if anyone’s home, and explains that he left his jacket earlier when he was fleeing from the deadly hands of Dee. As he goes further into the room he finds Katy unconscious on the floor, and drops to his knees to shake her awake. He is frantic, and this is where we really hope he doesn’t decide to put his many hours of halfway-watching and not-at-all-understanding Casualty to good use by attempting to perform an emergency surgery of some kind on her, such as a lobotomy or vasectomy.

NEXT TIME: Gráinne is shocked that the electric bill is due again, because she just paid it last year! It seems she is having cash flow issues, which is surprising considering she hasn’t had a job in 18 months. Fortunately for everyone, she has a plan to solve all her financial problems, which I suspect involves her fleeing Europe, and I recommend she call it “Grexit.”

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