Upstairs, Tadhg declares that Frances can’t just come waltzing back in here and take over like she owns the place, and in response she continues to unpack and informs him that that’s exactly what’s happening here. At this, Bobbi-Lee crashes through the door like Kool-Aid Man, waves the schedule in Frances’ face, and demands to know what she’s playing at. Frances snaps at her to have some manners and knock before she comes through that door, and then Bobbi-Lee replies, “It’s not my fault that your husband is cheating on you!” OH, SNAP! Surprisingly, instead of tearing Bobbi-Lee’s head off and laying eggs in her thorax, Frances turns on Tadhg and sneers that everyone in the village knows his dirty business. Bobbi-Lee, who certainly dodged a bullet there, then pleads that none of this is her fault, and that she shouldn’t have to suffer because Tadhg is having an affair with Berni. He gawks at her in disbelief while Frances laughs out loud at the preposterousness of this suggestion. She apologizes to Frances and explains that she thought taking her off the schedule was punishment for her association with Berni, and at this Tadhg finally throws her out of the kitchen and slams the door behind her. Now that the blonde distraction has subsided, Frances hisses that Maggie is not to set foot in their pub or their house, and Tadhg spits back that it’s his pub and his house and that he’ll have whomever he wants in there. She replies, “We’ll see about that,” and it looks like all the things that made Frances a good partner for Tadhg are also making her a worthy adversary to him.
Helen arrives at Gaudi with Sam in tow, and he’s sulky and pouting and refuses Pádraig’s offers of cupcakes and fizzy drinks and baskets of puppies. He instead turns to Helen and asks again why he can’t go to Bristol with her, offering to pay for the plane ticket with his communion money, which is very poignant, and then pleads with her not to leave him here. Wait till he finds out none of the bathroom doors in this place actually lead to bathrooms. Pádraig points out that he’ll take Sam to visit his terrible mother in the hospital every day, and that he’s made up a lovely room at home for him, but Sam pouts that it’s not his home and walks out the door. I’m sure it’s not what I’m supposed to be thinking in response to this, but: how many bedrooms does David and Gráinne’s house have? It seems to expand in response to local housing needs, much the way the staffing needs at the pub, shop, and café expand and contract in direct proportion to the local labor market.
Tadhg strolls through the kitchen with his suitcase to make sure Frances sees what he’s doing, and she gasps that she can’t believe he’s actually “moving in with that hag.” He tells her not to call Maggie a raicleach, and I wish I’d learned that word before my trip to Ireland last month so I could’ve thrown it around a lot in my efforts to further the special relationship between our two countries. Since insulting Maggie didn’t work, Frances tells him that if he moves in with her Áine will be the laughingstock of the schoolyard, at which he vows to beat up any child who hassles his daughter. I love the mental picture of Tadhg wading through the playground punching small children left and right. Frances once again employs some creative math by accusing Tadhg of having a midlife crisis, and he calls her a bitter old woman and promises that nothing will ever come between him and Maggie again. I’m going to be so pleased when he goes charging over there and discovers she’s moved some new Portuguese boyfriend in with her.
The most awkward high tea of all time has broken out at Gaudi’s, where Sam says he can’t be friends with Pádraig now that he knows he’s his dad who abandoned him as a baby, and Helen reminds him in soothing tones that things aren’t as black and white as that. Hopefully this means she reminded him what a complete wagon Sonia is and then asked, “Do you know what ‘homophobia’ means?” Maybe there is a Bran book about it. David arrives and introduces himself to Sam, explaining that he and Helen are old friends, and then the grownups yammer for a while about how awesome this is all going to be while Sam sits there and gives them all a bunch of side-eye. He sighs that his mother’s never going to wake up, and they all assure him that she will, and it’s a good thing Sam is a fictional character or else I would probably feel guilty about talking smack about his dreadful mother all the time. Helen promises Sam she’ll pick him up as soon as she gets home from her scuba holiday in Bristol, and Pádraig asks him, “So, what do you think?”, as if he has some choice in this matter, which elicits some more quality side-eye. He may have been blandly wholesome at the beginning, but I love how a room immediately becomes 50 percent shadier as soon as New Sam enters it.
Tadhg shows up at Maggie’s and finds her sitting around reading in the dark, and then she bangs on about her love of books for a while, and as a librarian I can officially say she reads too much and needs to develop some other hobbies, such as drinking. They flirt for a while, and then he tells her that Frances and Áine moved back into the pub, so he moved out. He shows her his suitcase, and as soon as she realizes what’s going on here—or at least what he thinks is going on here—she folds her arms across her chest and her lips disappear. Oh, dear. It seems this Airbnb is not as welcoming as the website suggested.
Back at Maggie’s, which you’ll notice I’m not calling “Maggie and Tadhg’s,” it seems the honeymoon may be over because she’s making it pretty clear that she doesn’t want him living there. He sputters that he left his wife and daughter to be with her, and she points out that they never discussed this and this isn’t the way it should have happened. As an avid viewer of American sitcoms, she was probably imagining she would place an ad in the newspaper seeking a roommate, or possibly a bass player for her band, and then the person who responded to it would turn out to be Tadhg. She spits that he’s not here because he wants to be with her, he’s here because Frances threw him out and he had nowhere else to go. If he hadn't been such a pill about it, he could go stay at that youth hostel where An Teaghlach used to be and make friends with some German backpackers in the process.
Pádraig wraps up the tour he’s given Sam of his new home, showing him how the toilet seat works and warning him to stay out of David’s karate room when the red light is on and so on. Sam looks peeved, and I suspect he’ll only be giving this place two stars on Yelp. He’s subtracting two stars because it doesn’t have an audio tour with a little headset like all the good museums, and one star because room service is only available until midnight. Pádraig offers to make him some paella soup or whatever they serve at Gaudi, but Sam’s more interested in how many TV channels they get and is annoyed when Gráinne tells him they only get “the Irish ones” because all his favorite shows are on Al-Jazeera. He actually says, “Is that all?” and then raises his eyebrows and makes a “they don’t even realize what a dump this place is!” face to himself that is absolutely delicious. It seems Pádraig could take lessons from his son on how to throw shade. He offers to call and order some additional channels, such as the Brazilian porn ones and the Shady Bitch Network, but then in an effort to avoid having to climb on the roof and install a satellite dish David offers some board games, which knowing him are probably educational. Sam looks around in disbelief at the Little House on the Prairie nightmare he’s wandered into, and then asks them if they at least have Wi-Fi he can use to Tweet for help and also to leave them a bad review on TripAdvisor. He’s pleased when it turns out they do indeed, but will be disappointed in a few minutes when he discovers the Vodaphone installer actually brought them an old fondue pot and told them it was Wi-Fi.
Tadhg pops into the café for no particular reason, and he and Berni discuss what a fool Bobbi-Lee is and also how terrible rumors are. I love it when Berni climbs up on her soapbox and condemns gossip given that she personally has distributed more misinformation than the Daily Mail. He then wanders away, leaving her sighing into the middle distance and wondering if anyone would believe it if she started telling people that Adam and Vince seem to be getting very cozy, just for kicks.
Upstairs, Áine is sitting at the table whining to Frances that she can’t do her math homework without her dad here to help. It’s true, Tadhg just answers all of Áine’s math problems by writing “None of your business” and then telling the teacher she’ll regret it if she asks again. Frances offers to help, but Áine waves her off because she’s useless at fractions. This reminds me of the time my mother “helped” me with my kindergarten math homework and, because she didn’t know the difference between the “less than” and “greater than” symbols, I got every single one of them wrong and almost got put in the remedial class. I swear I am not making this up. Just before Áine has to go to a special school, Tadhg appears with his suitcase, and she runs over and hugs him, exclaiming she knew he wasn’t really moving out and spitefully chalking it up as yet another of her mother’s lies. The two of them gang up on Frances for a bit and then Áine toddles off, which gives Frances the opportunity to innocently ask Tadhg if he forgot something. Heh. He matter-of-factly states that he didn’t, but that he’ll be staying in the spare room for a while after all, and she gloatingly asks if Maggie’s thrown him out already. Frances is definitely on a roll this episode, and I love it. He replies that it’s none of her business, which of course means “yes,” and after he stomps off to the spare room with his sad, sad suitcase, she smirks triumphantly to herself.
Downstairs, Mo hands John Joe his change and looks at him as if to say, “I know you’re dying to butt in, so go ahead and get it over with.” He reveals that he was talking to Colm earlier and that he’s planning to surprise her by taking her on a ski trip to Bray for Valentine’s Day, and that perhaps it would be good for her to tell him she’s got cancer before he books anything non-refundable. She tells him to drop it, because she’s not going to tell Colm anything until she knows exactly how bad things are, but he asserts that it’s not fair for her to keep this from him. Yeah, especially given how their relationship has been based on complete honesty all along.