Great LezBritain: “Lip Service” Recap — Season 2, Episode 1


Well here we reside again, Lip Servants. It’s been a long time coming. We’ve personally gone through a lot in the interim period — moved house twice and we’ve felt a lot of complex emotions about world events. We’ve felt nothing about Lip Service though, because it hasn’t been on.

Sarah: You know it takes a decent amount of time to make a TV programme.

Lee: They made it ages ago, Sarah; you know that. It’s just been sitting there gathering dust and people have been going mental in their heads waiting and waiting … just going mental.

But anyway, here it is now; Lip Service, Series 2, Episode 1. Roll credits and let’s get this lesbian house party started.

Oh gosh, it’s like we’ve never been away, Frankie is sitting on the floor in her flat looking forlorn, yet “vesty.” Which is always good. She also has slightly longer hair, but it is still messy enough to pass for a lesbian barnet. She’s looking through a huge pile of unpaid bills, but really she’s pining for Cat. The angst and pining is soundtracked beautifully by Aidan Moffat from Arab Strap’s dulcet, wasted tones.

Lee: Really nice music choice. Frankie and Aidan would have a brilliant night out in Glasgow together, don’t you think?

Sarah: I don’t think they’d survive the eve.

Meanwhile Cat is just back from Rio with beau DS Sam Murray. They look happy and Sam has bought Cat a necklace of love and it’s good to see them together all giggly, although Cat must be gutted about her crap tan. Before they even unzip a suitcase, they unzip each other and have a little roll.

Tess seems to be the sole spectator at a football field, uncomfortably watching Fin, her electrician girlfriend playing in a match. Tess watches with about as much enthusiasm as someone forced to watch Channel 5’s Candy Bar Girls on repeat for three days.

Post-match, a few of the football team go to a café for a hearty sausage. Tess shoots the breeze with this jovial bunch, but the differences are laid bare: Tess wears a red beret and fur jacket and wants to go to the theatre, while her girlfriend wears football stripes and likes to play football with ladies called “Badger.” The question mark falls. Will this relationship last? The tension is palpable.

Frankie has no job and thus has no pounds, so she and Tess need a flat-mate to ease their financial woes. So far they’ve just had a man-pervert and a drunk woman apply and they are not keen. Let it be known that as long as you confiscate all candles and matches, a drunken woman is an amazing addition to any flatshare situation, so they should not have been so hasty with this decision. Frankie then enquires after her love, Cat.

Tess: Er, yeah. They’re back. She left me a message earlier.

Frankie leaves and makes her way to Cat and DS Murray’s window.

Sarah: I’ve never known anyone to ever stare up at windows as much as Frankie does. Well apart from this one weird fella when I was a student but let’s not talk about that.

Lee: OK? I don’t know what is to be gained by staring up at windows

Sarah: Nothing. Or else there would always be streets full of people staring up at windows.

Frankie continues to stare up at the window, but DS Murray appears, fiddling with a curtain with her hands. This makes Frankie feel like shit. Damn DS Murray for being in her own home, demonstrating at that very moment that you should never underestimate a woman’s touch.

Tess and Ed are in a vintage clothes shop and Tess tells Ed about Frankie’s lack of sexual happenings since Sadie. Ed declares he’s had no fumbles of his own even though he’s now a fully-fledged author, and this is a bugger for him, so to speak. Tess explains that although the differences between her and girlfriend Fin are rife (i.e. football gear vs. a red beret), the sex is topnotch. This is how to kick a man when he is down. Tess receives a call from a potential flat-mate and little Ed looks at the woman minding the shop, hoping that she might like to mind him.

Cat knocks on Frankie’s door wearing a wide eyed expression of terror that makes us think she must not like Frankie’s new haircut.

Cat: How have you been?

Frankie: I’ve been better. It’s not been fun sitting around waiting to find out what you want.

Cat: Well, now you know how it feels. Sorry, I shouldn’t have said that.

Frankie offers Cat some tea, but because we are really good at textual analysis, we can tell you that really she is offering herself. Cat has just popped round to tell Frankie that their sexual endeavors must not continue, for she doesn’t want to lose a hot cop like DS Murray, so she refuses the tea. Because we are really good at reading between the lines, and Lee has a degree in media studies, we can tell you that once again “tea” is just a euphemism for sex, so what has happened here is that Cat has refused to have sex with Frankie.

Frankie asks Cat if this means she doesn’t love her. Cat’s eyes widen some more and Frankie goes for a lip-smacker. Cat takes it on for a few seconds before pulling away, leaving the flat, and Frankie in it, frustrated.

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