At the hospital, Kate is doing her best to channel Florence Nightingale. Now, Kate has been the one getting most of the nursing this season, which is understandable; she’s been through a lot. But at this point, I think becoming a healer herself is the best thing that could happen to her character. She listens to a first-hand account of the senseless slaughter at Dieppe, and, as always, the show does a perfect job of humanizing soldiers and never, ever glorifying violence. More on that later. Anyway, it was bit traumatizing for poor Kate, who next tries to lavish her attention on a totally mute, but equally shell-shocked, soldier.
That night, Vera, Lorna, Gladys, Teresa, and Betty go to the pictures to see a HITCHCOCK movie. You could do a drinking game with the number of times they say “HITCHCOCK” in this episode, as if the homage wasn’t already pretty clear. Gladys and Vera hold hands, Teresa and Betty hold hands, and Lorna looks so very lost and lonely. My feelings are already at 11 and we’re only halfway through.
After the movie, Betty and Teresa walk home arm-in-arm, and anyone who has ever been in a relationship where one or both of you is closeted know the sick/happy feeling of each touch being this illicit secret. You also know that at some point the sick overtakes the happy. In this case trouble comes in the form of a couple of louts who call them “bull daggers.” This asshole tries to KISS TERESA, which earns him a swift right hook from our girl McRae. What Teresa says next hurts worse than a punch, and still has to be said by too many girlfriends to their well-meaning lovers.
Teresa: Rule one is: don’t go looking for trouble. I have a lot at stake and you have a lot to learn. I keep my head down and I keep my business to myself.
The following evening Clifford the Big Red Spy takes Gladys out for a dinner.
Cliff: So tell me Glady, what are your passions?
Gladys: Oh I’m just a typical girl, into justice, democracy, and reading people like dime store novels. Why don’t you tell me more about “England” where you’re “from.”
Cliff: My childhood was one long drunken escapade. Boring, really. Leans forward sexily. Gladys, can you track the scent of fear? Can you hear a lie before it’s spoken? Do you laugh in the face of danger?
Gladys: Loudly and often. My only real blind spot is people being total weirdos on first dates.
Back at the Jewel Box, Betty is dolefully doing her time the dog house when Teresa comes ovce more to lay down the law. Once again, I’ll leave the dialogue to the writers.
Teresa, Voice of Reason: Look, I know how it is. You’ve got something going for the first time in your life, and you want to shout it from the rooftops.
Betty, Physical Manifestation of My Heart: Aren’t I allowed to be happy?
Teresa, German Shepherd: Just because there’s women everywhere, you think nobody notices us, Betty?
Betty, Golden Retriever: They don’t, Teresa.
Teresa: I will not risk my career. Not even for you.
And hey, that hurts. But I ain’t no part time feminist, so I can’t exactly take issue with it.
In another case of “wishing I could build a time machine for all these characters,” Sheila and Dr. Patel are trying to navigate their relationship. Lorna thinks the two have no business being together, since their cultural differences leave them futureless. Dr. Patel concurs, since he is a
Brahman and long-since promised to an Indian woman. He and Sheila are just making hay in the meantime. Neither Lorna nor I are quite sure what to do with this honesty. Do I hate him for making other plans or love him for living in the moment?