Monday, March 20, 2017

Can't Bi Me Love

Season 21, Episode 56
First aired 18 March 2017

We begin at Gaudi, where Fia and her tiny heart-shaped lips reject a phone call from Adam, while Pádraig and Mack look on sadly. Pádraig I get, since he and Fia are intermittent BFFs, but I’m surprised Mack even knows who Fia is. Also, there are still glasses of that nuclear-green sludge sitting around on the bar, because everyone is too afraid to touch it to clean it up. It’s also possible they are candles. The line between edible and inedible is tricky at Gaudi.

Outside the new pharmacy, Gráinne does a triple-axel to try to avoid an angry-looking Caitríona, but it’s all for naught, because Berni appears and yells, “Hi Gráinne!” Let me tell you now that this episode has a lot of Gráinne alternately attempting to tell Caitríona about the seaweed and attempting to keep her from finding out about it, and I am going to skip over as much of it as possible, for all our sakes. Caitríona is fuming that the pharmacy is selling all the same rubbish she sells in her salon, but Berni tries to assure her that she has built up customer loyalty through years of abuse and surliness, and there are a lot of locals with low self-esteem who depend on that. Gráinne offers to go check out the competition later today, and Caitríona thanks her for being such a good friend. It’s never going to end well when Caitríona starts talking about friendship.

Inside the pharmacy, Janice is nervous about today’s grand opening, but Mo assures her things will go fine, and that she’ll ask Mack to drive to Galway to pick up the canapés. Hopefully she’ll take the time to explain to him what canapés are, or else he’s going to show up with a cage full of birds or a group of Portuguese nuns. Colm shows up and smarms around grossly, flirting with Janice by telling her he needs medicine urgently and also a trolley to cart his giant willy around in and so on. Instead of throwing up, or spraying him with mace, Mo and Janice smile coyly and flirt back, and it is yucky. 

Gráinne decides she’s going to pull the seaweed from the pharmacy, and then we cut to Mo and Mack arguing at the community center about the errand she wants him to run for Janice. He’s reluctant, what with the threat of Dee murdering him for associating with Janice hanging over his head, but Mo assures him he’ll be safe, because this time Janice won’t be in his car, or his jeans. Meanwhile, Tadhg and Frances have told Micheál about Áine’s close call with alcoholism, which of course Tadhg blames on famous troublemaker Réailtín. The interesting thing is that Frances and Tadhg seem completely unconcerned about 14-year-old Réailtín being a drinker, they just don’t want her to tell Áine about it. It really does take a village.

The pharmacy is packed with customers, and a cheerful Katy tells a recently arrived Gráinne that her seaweed is delightful, and only sort of looks and smells like throw-up. In fact, she’s going to buy some for her mom! In case we ever needed definitive proof that Katy does not like her mother, here it is. Gráinne is surprised when she sees that Janice has created an entire display of her slime, which of course changes her tune about pulling it from the shop. Máire arrives and says she might buy some for Fia, presumably as punishment for all her recent shenanigans, which gives Gráinne an opportunity to happily explain to her how Aille na Saille clears your pores and flushes your toxins by flying up your bum and into your soul on a winged dolphin of love and so on.

At the B&B, Adam has come by to apologize, and Fia has made the mistake of letting him in rather than pouring scalding water on him from upstairs. She’s aloofly giving him the silent treatment, and he promises her that the way he treated her yesterday will never happen again. She tells him she’s got enough on her plate without his nonsense, and there is back and forthing, and the best part is when she says, “Are you deaf? I’m after breaking up with you,” and tries to throw him out. He desperately tells her there are things she doesn’t understand, but that if she goes with him, all will be revealed. I think this is where he flies her to the Fortress of Solitude and reveals that he is Superman.

Mack arrives at the pharmacy carrying his box of canaries and Janice makes a big production about how he’s her hero and also has throbbing biceps and bulging loins or whatever. Of course Dee is standing there to hear all this, which we are pretty sure wasn’t an accident, because Janice is a troublemaker. He’s uncomfortable, and assures Dee he was doing this as a favor to Mo, not scandalous Janice, and then flees. Dee, who is being surprisingly non-berserk about all this, tells Janice she makes Mack uncomfortable. Janice says she has this effect on men, but not on her husband, what with his not existing and all. This leaves Dee blinking and sputtering in surprise, and somewhere Mack just felt a steamroller drive over his grave. Hired photographer Vince arrives, and there are Laverne & Shirley-style hijinks as David and Gráinne try to keep him from seeing the seaweed.

A surly Fia complains that she doesn’t understand why Adam has dragged her all the way out to his mansion, which she didn’t like when she saw it on Downton Abbey, and doesn’t like now, either. He starts to explain the various ways in which his upbringing caused him to become an asshole, but is interrupted when his mother materializes, so he makes nervous introductions, and Fia looks like she would much rather be at home listening to Peatsaí and Sally having sex right now.

At the community center, we see Réailtín using pretend-Facebook, which of course means she is going to be internet-stalked or kidnapped or mail-order-brided before the season is over. Laoise shows up with some nonsense involving a bagful of computer cables and microscopes and an old cell phone, and then Micheál bursts in and confronts Réailtín with the Áine/alcohol thing. She is simultaneously annoyed, embarrassed, and bored by this, in that way only teenagers can be, and when he tells her that thanks to her Áine almost drank alcohol, she’s basically like, “Well, it’s not my fault if Áine is too stupid to drink without getting caught.” He angrily tells her that with this attitude she can forget about that cell phone he was going to get her for her birthday, which we thought he gave her about two months ago, but maybe he just bought it and has been carrying it around this whole time. He confiscates her laptop while he’s at it and then stomps off, and you can tell she was under the impression that being a stroppy teenager would be nonstop freedom and delight and now feels very misled.

And now there is Adam-related psychodrama, in which he’s sat the two women in his life (no, not Síle and Courtney Love) down at the kitchen table to apologize for his bad behavior. He explains, and I quote, “I was having a hard time making my mind up about things. I was all over the place.” OH MY GOD ADAM IS COMING OUT. His mother snottily asks, “Are you feeling better now?”, and then he hems and haws and there are lots of awkward pauses, but then it turns out that sadly he is not coming out, but is instead telling us that he’s been ambivalent about taking on the responsibility of dating a woman with a child. Of course, since Katherine hadn’t heard of Fia until five minutes ago, this is also the first she’s hearing of Liam Óg, and she looks stricken. Wait till she hears about his arrival in a basket. Adam says he’s been struggling, because he hasn’t been sure he could be a good role model for the baby. I’ll give you a minute to stop laughing over the thought of Adam being a good role model to anyone. The saga goes on for a bit, and he tells Fia that yesterday when he thought he’d lost them forever, he came to the realization that a life with them is what he really wants. Oh, lord. There’s a long pause, and then Katherine, whose face is an interesting blend of panic and skepticism, says she’s glad to meet her son’s girlfriend finally, and that she hopes to meet Liam Óg soon, and then she and Adam exchange mysterious looks.

After the break, Caitríona is trying to drum up business at the community center by handing out coupons advertising 2 insults for the price of 1. Vince shows her the photos of the pharmacy’s seaweed display, and just as the furious gasping is getting cranked up, we mercifully pan over to Réailtín, who’s asking Laoise if she can borrow the old cellphone she saw in her bag of electronic junk earlier. She says she’s missing out on all the social media fun her friends are having, such as Snapchat and Instagram and KidnapATeen. Laoise is reluctant, so Réailtín puts on her extra-sad face, and gets what she wants. Who’s paying for the service on this phone? Is it prepaid? What’s happening, and when is it going to result in a car chase through the forest?

Mo is hanging around at the pharmacy with Janice when Colm oozes back in to ask his favorite new pharmacist for a date. She says yes, to Mo’s mild dismay. Mo takes him aside and tries to talk him out of it, for completely unselfish reasons I’M SURE, but he’s determined to get his Boots under Janice’s bed. (See what I did there?) Janice needs to read the leaflet explaining that the side effects of going out with Colm may include nausea, gas, headache, and burning when you pee.

Love’s Young Dream have returned to the B&B, and Adam seems surprised that Fia isn’t entirely thrilled about the little scene that just played out over at Frownton Abbey. She asks how she can trust that he’ll never have second thoughts about her and Liam Óg again, and while I appreciate where she’s coming from, if she’s looking for a relationship in which no one ever has second thoughts about anything, life is going to be very disappointing for her. They argue for a while, and then she tells him he’s got to decide once and for all what he wants from life, and while I again appreciate the sentiment, I think she’s putting a lot of pressure on what seems to be a college fling involving a guy who blows hot and cold and sells drugs and occasionally bangs her when he’s not off banging someone else. He looks confused and frustrated and a bit desperate as he tells her he’s not saying their life will always be easy, but that if she gives him another chance, he’ll do his best. She smiles and they hug rather chastely, and this feels a lot like Bart Simpson’s “I can’t promise I’ll try, but I’ll try to try.”

David and Gráinne are at the pub discussing how well the seaweed business went today when who should appear but Caitríona, who at first confuses Gráinne by playing nice, and then goes psycho on her in exactly the way you would imagine. So, Gráinne is fired again. Meanwhile, at the bar, Mo is trying to tell Janice what a player Colm is, but Janice is basically like, “Fine, because I’m a player, too, and he looks like a decent ride.” Mo is vaguely jealous and looks semi-longingly over at Colm, who is looking at porn on his phone or whatever, and we really need to get some more decent single men on this show so Mo can stop scraping the bottom of this particular barrel.

Gráinne has followed Caitríona over to the salon and they scream at each other for a while, and it’s actually a very well done and entertaining scene, but trying to recap the “she said, she said” would be boring for everyone and wouldn’t provide us much forward motion. Eventually Gráinne confesses that David got the sack, and that’s why she’s been so desperate to flog her seaweed by any means necessary, even by taking the outrageous step of going to the nice person who wants to work hard to sell her product instead of the mean hag who doesn’t give a crap about it and just wants her to clean her toilets. This softens Caitríona up in a dramatic and somewhat jarring way, and when Gráinne tells her how embarrassed David is about all this, Caitríona says she won’t tell anyone about it, and even seems fairly sincere. Finally she kindly tells Gráinne to come in tomorrow morning, and they’ll finally test Áine na Bainne together, as they should’ve done a long time ago. Gráinne is relieved, and working for Caitríona must be like riding a roller coaster with no lap bar or safety belt, which also periodically slams to a halt so someone can come out and slap you in the face.

Back at the pub, Janice slinks over to make Mack squirm for a while, but Mo is more interested in asking her where Colm went, and is not thrilled when Janice says they’re going into Galway for a few drinks. I hear Colm’s favorite cocktail is the Skeevy Drifter. She lets Mack twist in the wind for a little while before sashaying off, and when he brightly says to Mo that he hopes things work out with Janice and Colm, her response is so incredibly awkward that even he can see something’s bothering her, and he has the intuition of a lump of coal in a paper bag.

Fia pops into Gaudi to pick up a takeaway and runs into Máire there, who burbles that it’s lovely to see her out and about again. They chat happily for a while, and Máire gives her the seaweed she bought to help her stop crying her eyes out over “that eejit.” It’s because if you get Gráinne’s seaweed too close to your eyes, it actually causes your tear ducts to fuse shut. Fia assures her there will be no more tears shed over Adam…because they’re back together! Of course, Máire responds to this with the joy and delight of someone who’s just found Santa dead in the fireplace on Christmas morning.

Back at Frownton Abbey, Adam tells Katherine he’s been thinking of leaving college and getting a job so he can get a place with Fia. She asks him some leading questions that basically involve her trying to determine how much of a gold-digging floozy Fia is, but he tells her that Fia isn’t trying to get his money, because she’s got a trust fund. Well, at least this clears up for Katherine who the gold-digging floozy in this story is. They bicker, and then Katherine yells that she can’t believe Adam is pulling this crap after all that time and money it took to bribe his way back into college after he made a pass at his tutor… “that poor man.” OMG, this just got incredibly brilliant incredibly quickly! Adam tells her to forget about that, because he was drunk, and besides, “As I said to you before, I don’t like men in that way.” Aiiieeeeeee! He tells his mother, and himself, that he loves Fia, because she’s caring and funny, and has ladyparts probably, and eventually Katherine says he can stay there, but that he has to stay in school and finish his degree so he can take care of his new family. Well, this is making a number of things make sense all of a sudden, isn’t it?

Over at the community center, Réailtín gets a Facebook message from someone called MetalMan (oh dear) saying, “I’m really looking forward to meeting you!” (uh-oh). Hopefully Suzanne’s holiday house is still available for weddings, bar mitzvahs, and kidnappings!

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