“Bad Girls” Recaps: Episode 3.01 “Back From the Brink”

Fenner’s folly — I cannot stand the sight of Fenner’s hand on Shell’s thigh. Oh, good, Karen’s there to relieve my eyes. Hmm, her hair looks shorter. Guess she got it cut; she had plenty of time to do that between the end of the party and now, which is, uh, immediately after the party.

Karen talks to the guards on duty and learns that Fenner hasn’t closed up shop the way he’s supposed to. So she stomps onto the wing, looking for a fight. She soon gets one, in the form of an inhuman howl, which is apparently the sound Fenner makes when a broken bottle is plunged into his considerable gut.

Shell smiles and twists the bottle before pulling it back out. Soon the whole wing is alive and yelling as Shell taunts her prey. Karen goes right to the source of the sound and starts to unlock the cell door, but Shell pushes the nearest piece of furniture in front of it and waggles the bottle at Karen through the peephole, spitting, "Piss off, you bitch!"

Hey, Shell: Gutting Fenner like a fish is one thing, but calling Karen a bitch? Too far.

During the montage of everyone waking up in their cells, we get a little glimpse of Denny and Shaz, spooning in their tiny bunk. Aww. We also see Yvonne, who is happily lighting a smoke and saying to herself, "She’s got him."

Elsewhere, Barbara looks down at an empty bunk and hisses "Nikki!" at the unresponsive air.

Shell kicks Fenner off the bed so she can move the bed in front of the door too. Whoa — she kicked him, bleeding and shrieking, off the bed! She’s such a sadist, and such a gleeful one.

Karen starts to try to get a handle on the "hostage situation" while Shell hollers from her cell, saying she won’t talk to anyone until Fenner admits he’s a rapist. Fenner tries to reason with her, desperate to save his own life.

Shell: Do you want another poke in the pudding?

I shouldn’t giggle. I can’t help it. But I must admit he’s not looking too healthy.

We’re on a road to nowhere — Helen drives like an old lady and stares ahead without speaking. Nikki sits in the passenger seat, wearing her bad wig and trying to make small talk. It’s like they’ve already been married 40 years and are on their way to the grandkids’ school for the holiday concert. How will Helen be able to rrroll her R’s when she has dentures?!

Nikki: It’s gonna be hell, waiting for you. Probably be months, won’t it? Listen, Helen, if you ever … [interrupting herself as a horn honks behind them] I forget I look a total prat. Dusty Springfield’s ugly sister, eh? [smiling] Worked all right on your gormless gateman, though. He thought I was a right dizzy blonde.
Helen: Do you really think you’da gone back to prison, Nikki?
Nikki: What?
Helen: If you hadn’t seen that letter.
Nikki: Why; do you wish you hadn’t shown it to me now?
Helen: No, I mean if we still had hope for your appeal like we did, and we’d spent this night together, do you honestly think you’da gone back to prison?
Nikki: [pensively] Yeah. I would’ve, yeah.
Helen: Why?
Nikki: ‘Cause I really did think we were gonna win it.

Helen just looks stunned and sort of moves her tongue around aimlessly in her mouth. She’s probably checking the seal on her dentures.

On a more serious note, the close calls on this show are maddening. How can so many things go ever so slightly yet so very horribly wrong? Lorna almost gets away with bringing drugs in for Shell; Monica’s son dies just before his mum is released from prison; Yvonne almost has a threesome with Nikki and Helen. OK, except for that last one.

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