“Skins” Retro Recap (3.03): “Thomas”

Now, again, Emily is not a coward. On the face of the thing, without the benefit of the generational finale, she is the most courageous of them all. So, she lets Katie write her propaganda because: a) She hasn’t finished defining herself (don’t start a war if you don’t know what you’re fighting for). And b) It’s not hurting anyone else — until now.

Emily’s personal definition, her identity, still isn’t fully-formed in her own mind, and I love the writers for making it more than a label. I love the writers for the thing she says right before she sleeps with JJ ("I’m a lot of things, JJ.") — which, in addition to being true, is also monumentally courageous — because labels are the walls of our clubhouses.

Not just "gay" or "lesbian" or whatever sexuality thing we’re talking about, but also nationality and race and occupation and socioeconomic status and gender and brand-names and culture and education. And while those are all valid pieces of our puzzles, I think Walt Whitman was onto something in "Song of Myself" [Do I contradict myself? / Very well then I contradict myself / (I am large, I contain multitudes.)]. We turn labels into hiding places, which is weak and foolish even if it’s understandable, but Emily never does that. It’s one of the reasons it takes her so long to find her voice.

So Katie is writing Emily’s propaganda and Emily is not protesting, and then two things happen that trigger an unstoppable motion: 1) Katie’s Emily-verse reaches across their twin bond and wounds Naomi. And 2) When Naomi walks away, it really does look like she’s done.

And here comes the story of Emily Fitch, as told by Emily Fitch, for maybe the first time ever:

Emily: Oh, for f-ck’s sake! She didn’t kiss me, OK?
Katie: Yes, she did; she practically jumped —
Emily: I kissed her. I was drunk and someone gave me MDMA and … I felt like f-cking kissing someone. Satisfied?

OK, so that’s what’s happening with Emily and Naomi and Katie. Their stories just got infinitely messier and more tangled in a forever kind of way. But now I am going to make the case that Effy Stonem is a deity. Ready?

God’s three distinguishing attributes are omniscience, omnipresence and omnipotence. That is, God is all-knowing, always-present, and all-powerful.

Remember how I said Effy just knew in the first episode that Naomi wasn’t the one who had kissed Emily? Remember how she just focused right past Katie’s mad chatter and zoomed in on Emily’s face, like: You kissed her; you resent your sister; you’re actually in love with Naomi. And so now Emily confesses the truth, and the knowing way Effy smiles, it’s like she’s almost proud of Emily. And the way Effy looks over her shoulder because she knows Naomi is coming back? I present to you: omniscience. (Hold that thought; we’ll be back in a second.)

Cook is more than OK with the idea that Naomi and Emily kissed and because he is nothing if not consistent, he wants them to kiss for him right now. But Effy insists they get on with the party, and Thomas kind of agrees because his dosh-for-stolen-weed plan is the only thing standing between him and homelessness tomorrow after Desperate Housewives.

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