“Bad Girls” Recaps: Episode 1.7 “Playing With Fire”

 
 

The potting shed — Nikki’s doing a little gardening. I guess Sean inspired her. But she’s interrupted: Helen waltzes in with a serious look on her face.

Nikki: Here comes the blushing bride-to-be. Kept that quiet, didn’t you?
Helen: Sean had just asked me to marry him. Not that it’s any of your business, actually.
Nikki: [shrugging] Why are you telling me then?
Helen: I really don’t know, but I certainly don’t have to explain myself to you.
Nikki: Fine.
Helen: You know, for some odd reason, it seems to upset you, Sean and I getting married.
Nikki: Odd reason. That’s a good one.
Helen: Nikki, what the hell is this about?
Nikki: [raising her voice] You really don’t know?
Helen: If I knew, I wouldn’t be asking you, would I?
Nikki: You wanna know what this is about? It’s about this.

And she takes Helen’s hand and puts it on her breast. Um, on her own breast. She essentially forces Helen to cop a feel. Yeah, it’s a little unexpected. Helen says, "Jesus Christ."

Since when has this been a seduction tactic? Grabbing someone’s hand and putting it where you want it to go? Isn’t that assault? Maybe it’s just asinine.

After the fade-to-black commercial gap, we see Helen and Nikki fretting about what just happened. Nikki is still in the potting shed, stabbing some dirt with a trowel. Helen is in her office, sighing and fidgeting.

Helen picks up the phone. "Can you bring me Nikki Wade, please? Thanks." Helen! Did you just summon yourself a girlfriend?

Shell’s cell — Dominic and Lorna are nearly done with their inspection. But then Dominic takes one last look at the birdcage, and there he finds what he’s looking for.

A birdcage? Shell has a poor, innocent bird? Birdcages make me sad generally, but this one is in a cage in a cell. Wah.

Shell starts to say the drugs aren’t hers, but she doesn’t "grass" on Lorna yet. (To "grass" means to rat someone out. And someone who does so is also called a "grass." There are various theories as to the etymology of this expression. I think it’s probably best to just accept it — it’s fun to say. "Don’t be a grass! You grassed me up!" Try it and see.)

After Dominic leaves, Shell asks Lorna to stay behind for a second. Lorna says she can’t help Shell this time, so Shell asks to see Fenner instead.

Jeez. It’s one thing for Helen to have Nikki brought to her whenever she feels like it, but it seems that Shell can summon her playthings when she wants them, too. I can’t imagine being so demanding, especially not in prison. Clearly I don’t have what it takes to be a screw or a con. I’m OK with that.

Helen’s office — Speaking of desire, Nikki and Helen are talking about what happened in the potting shed. Nikki starts to apologize for being "out of order."

Helen: [loudly and sternly] I don’t care what you were, Nikki.
Nikki: [silent, pained stare]
Helen: You’ll understand if I’m blunt. Now, I know that you’re a lesbian, and you’re comfortable with that and so on. But I’m a heterosexual. And I’m gonna get married very soon. I find your behavior inappropriate. You seem to want to go out of your way to make me feel uncomfortable.
Nikki: Why would I do that?
Helen: [sighing and softening a little] I like you, Nikki. I’ve encouraged you to do a degree. I’ve put you on Enhanced. But everything I have done for you, I have done for professional reasons. Now, I can assure you that’s the case.
Nikki: Fine. If you say so.
Helen: [gritting her teeth] If you ever do anything like that again … Nikki. Even if I were attracted to you — which I’m not — there is no way we could have a relationship. I mean, for a start, I would be sacked. What I’m trying to say to you is find another … another focus for your attention. Get back with Trisha. Anything. But don’t waste your time on me.
Nikki: [sharply] Well, I’m sorry to have caused you so much trouble, Miss.

And with that, Nikki flip-flops out the door. Judging by the look on Helen’s face, I’d say the trouble’s only beginning.

I don’t even know where to begin! Helen was so bossy, but she didn’t exactly put Nikki in her place. It seemed like she was trying to lecture herself more than anyone else. Keep trying to convince yourself, Helen. Nikki can see what’s going on, even if she has weird ways of acting on it.

Nikki mostly looked heartbroken as Helen rationalized everything. Ah, love: the highs, the lows, the gropes in the potting shed.

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