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Friday, October 23, 2015

The Exposed Life of Caroline Stanbury, Lady of London S2E7

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She ate the dog with a fine Chianti.


Episode 7: The Cougar in the Room


More Meaningful Title: Best. Episode. Ever. Because. Accents.


In the intro, Lady Judy gestures frantically, vogueing to a beat only she can hear. Fleming cooks. Caroline puts her hair in a bun, takes it out of a bun and ties it back into a messy bun in perfect silence, a contemplative move reminiscent of Waiting For Godot; and the person Annabelle checks the sights on her shotgun while standing at her dining room table. If I didn't know better I would think I was watching a Dadist film. Haruki Murakami writes in '1Q84' that once a loaded gun enters the narrative, it can not remain without being used. It begs the question, how will these lives converge?


We begin with a relaxed Lady Julie and Sophie (like tequila and Clamato juice, I'm in love with this pairing!) quietly shopping for a shooting weekend in some sort of men's kilt store in order to 'look the part'. (Reader's Note: Lady Julie keeps referring to it as a SHOO-ting week-END, in a bad approximation of a upper-class British accent.) Juliet joins them. They look at socks and try on felt hats. It's amazing. Sophie is so friendly and knowledgeable about shooting in the talking head segment, but... wait! Something has happened, they are being vague...

Cut to Caroline Fleming and Caroline Stanbury curled up in bed together (hopefully, one day I will come home and Caroline will be curled up in my bed) talking about, I can't be certain... Could it be the same topic? Yes, yes it appears to be. The plot is thickening! Fleming is still? very upset about Marissa's cougar comments from last episode. She needs to repeat over and over again that she is "in love with a 30-year-old" who writes her embarrassing poetry. That's cool, Fleming, do you!


Best Line of the Episode

"It's my nightmare!" - Caroline Stanbury, on romantic love. Same Caroline.

Cut to Marissa, lying reframing explaining to her husband why she doesn't like Fleming's new beau: He kicked her out of a cab in the middle of the night!


WHOA...


WAIT!


WHAT?


WHEN??


WHY DOES THE BEST STUFF HAPPEN OFF-CAMERA ON THIS SHOW?!?!?


Follow me, Dear Reader, because we need to peek behind the curtain for a moment. According to Google, Sophie's birthday is 28 December and in 2014 that landed on a Sunday. It was this night that Marissa is claiming she was abandoned by Fleming and her man when they threw her out of the cab on the way home. (Please note: Fleming does not deny this happened, but alleges it was not so dramatic.) As a result, Marissa was bitchy and irritable with Fleming as punishment, making all the cougar comments to deliberately  "subconciously" get under her skin. Not a good look, Marissa. And the clincher? Marissa is 'best friends' with Fleming's sister and now Fleming's parents are casting a glance askance at the boyfriend, harshing Fleming's flow when she's just tryin' to get it in.


For simplicity sake, let's diagram this problem backwards on a restaurant napkin, the way my friend Carolyn did to explain why her engagement was called off...

Fleming is doubly angry --- Danish parents are in a uproar --- Fleming is angry --- Marissa calls Fleming a cougar at bowling and complains to Fleming's sister that the bf is an ass --- Marissa gets kicked out a cab --- [insert reason why bf did this to Marissa]

We are missing a big piece of the script story here, Bravo! Why did that happen? Englishmen who date Danish Baroness' are not normally the kind of pricks that ditch middle-aged females on the side of the street for no reason. What did Marissa do to deserve this? Other than being Marissa.



I love her. I'm scared of her. It's complicated.

Images pass along the screen in a blur. The English countryside is featured, the day is blustery and damp. Women wearing fur hats shoot magnificent birds. First the hat is on the person Annabelle, then it dons the head of Caroline Fleming. It's a sorting hat, indicating who is good at SHOO-ting and who is not. 


Let's recap!

Juliet hates Marissa.
Marissa finds calm Juliet "boring".
Fleming hates Marissa.
But Marissa loves to watch the person Annabelle shooting (FA-SHUN!)
Caroline Stanbury hates shooting and drags everyone to the pub. 
The person Annabelle hates the pub and rolls out of there wearing the giant fur sorting hat like a crown with a pair of pheasants hung on her shoulder like an old pair of ice skates, looking like a Vogue photo shoot circa 1995. She brought a man-friend on the shoot and leaves him behind like so much Eurotrash. Fucking perfection.


"I'm Happy"

Meanwhile...at Gift-Library. Kidding, you guys. It's already closed. Sophie asks Caroline about it and Caroline does an excellent pissed-off cockney accent. I tremble with delight.

Just when you thought it couldn't get any better, relaxed Lady Julie and Marissa are drinking champagne in a bubble bath together! Talks turns to Fleming's upset and Marissa indicates that she is more than ready for a fight. Okay, twinkle-toes, let's see this. To be extra passive-aggressive, they both arrive late and slightly tipsy to a formal dinner where everyone else await in hunger. Fleming - barely able to contain her rage - gets in an argument with Marissa about models in the fashion industry getting their bodies creamed by a special person (who must be known as a "creamer", yes?). 


It goes without saying that I am crying with laughter


Caroline Stanbury, dressed as Tuxedo Mask (this woman loves costume!) realizes that Fleming is about to explode and schools Marissa on how large the problem is for Fleming. Marissa decides to beat her up in the parking lot face the music and asks Fleming to talk during a bathroom visit. By her own admission, the thought of this too much for Fleming and she tries to crawl out the window. Fleming does an imitation of Marissa's American accent.


FYI I am crying with laughter.


Marissa kinda listens, apologizes, uses the old "I'm not gonna lie about my feelings" bullshit - the national anthem of basic bitches everywhere - apologizes some more and Fleming accepts her apology.


EXCEPT SHE DOESN'T - because that is how this show works!


And you know what is happening in the next room while the camera wastes time on this non-issue? 



~~~SOPHIE IS FUNNELING BOOZE WITH JULIET ~~~~

You had one job, Bravo! This is not a drill! 

Okay people, we need to have a huddle because I am seriously concerned about Fleming and this mystery dude. IN general, guys who start fights between women-friends and who cause drama with gf's parents and sisters always turn out to be bad news...

Next Week: Something is Rotten in Denmark


I don't know how they are going to top this episode, but looks like they're gonna try because it will feature Naomi Cambell, a trip to Denmark and a potential fight between Caroline and Annabelle?? If I had to pick three things that had no relation to each other, those are the three things I would choose.



*sings* ...my empire of dirt...

Food Caroline Talked About in This Episode

She orders fois gras at the shooting weekend.

Food Caroline Actually Ate in This Episode

Well, she must be hungry because she hasn't eaten in the past two episodes, so this week she gorged herself. And by that I mean, she delicately held a spoon above a bowl in an imitation of eating soup while sitting in Fleming's bed. Well played, Caroline. She chases this with a lollipop. This woman eats like she's trying to get pre-diabetes.

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