It's gone beyond nasty on Spotless, too much has happened to be fixed with any sort of tidy bow, and we're hitting that critical time in bingewatching: episode 8 of 10, which means if we really put our backs into it, we could finish tonight. Let's see how far the momentum pulls us onward.
There's too much back story to go over in a sentence anymore, suffice to say it's all getting ugly and I hope you read my other recaps because you're about to be spoiled the eff oot.
Side note: I am re-recapping this show 11 months after I first did them, because a full extended cut has been made available by Netflix. I am planning to pick up the DVDs as well, but for now am seriously enjoying all the secondary storylines that were cut in the draft for TV.
Jean (Marc-Andre Grondin) is prowling the back alleys en route to Maureen (Naomi Radcliffe)'s house; she's stressed and drinking and I guess I would be too if there was a still-warm dead guy having hung himself in my parlour. It's her husband Sam (Adrian Schiller, who has the most interesting face), and they sound like swingers / adventurers: they felt they had the obligation to experience as many places and people as possible. Mousy bookkeepers: like onions, yo. She doesn't think he "topped himself" (the Brits have the best expressions for EVERYTHING, only bested by the Aussies, which I don't understand most of the time anyway, soz) because HE couldn't handle it, but because he didn't want to put her through it. She doesn't want him thought of like that but! She doesn't know that is Jean's new specialty! Item 2A) on the menu: manufacture of evidence to conceal manner / method of death. Plus there's a special on body washing.
It seems our Jean has gotten entirely comfortable with perverting the course of justice, doesn't it? I suppose he may as well use it for good as well as evil in the form of Nelson Clay (Brendan Coyle).
Ohhh and Jean is having a conversation with the nearly departed Sam, whom he chides for ghost-smoking in his scene... he's bought the biscuit, has he? Mr. Robot taught me that Jean is wrestling with his conscience, like: has he gone to the dark side? There's no Nelson about forcing him to do it, is there? Personally, I think if he'd gone into it with the right attitude, he'd have done better. He was already crooked; bribing Tom for contracts. Switching to the other side just meant a LOT more work. He just got fixated on the comparative morality of it all.
Good old dead Sam brings up another of the points I've been shouting at friends: why hasn't Jean warned Julie (Miranda Raison)? Or taken ANY steps to protect his family at all? Sure, he went to the police, that worked out GREAT, but he hasn't told Julie to be aware of oh hey, here's a picture of these two psychos that THREATENED YOU PERSONALLY, maybe don't accept furniture commissions from them alone in your shop, yeah?
Sam's complaining about Jean's choice of manner of death, drunk drowning not being very sophisticated, I gather, but we soon move on to talk about Capoue (Francis Renaud - whom I thought was a rapist from the first episode, but who turned out to be a consensual lover of Jean and Martin's mother) and why didn't Jean warn him before planting an ax in his head lo those many years ago? That's a good question, actually, although neither of those boys would have stood a chance if he hadn't had the jump on Capoue. Jean sinks Sam's head below the water just as they did Capoue as Sam as conscience taunts Jean.
Sonny (Kate Magowan) and Martin (Denis Menochet) are screwing again and I'm sure it's supposed to look lovely and mystical with the gasping and whatnot but I'm trying to work out how the cowgirl sitting astride position works around his belly.
Sonny is feeling conflicted about her vows, not wanting to continue with Martin, who says he gets what she means, but is wrong. He and her have nothing to do with her marriage to Nelson, and as for the damage it could cost?
He knows all about it because he saw his mother fcuking another man and they show it again and it's slower and I didn't watch between fingers and it appears now that it WAS consensual. Not rape. I'm just going to say: she appears to be in quite a lot of pain, perhaps because everyone is mostly dressed.
It set everything in motion, but each time we see a little more. In the flashback, Capoue says Martin is a big boy, he knows what's going on? And Martin's mom was sad, this made her happy. Martin spat on his face and that's when the slapping started, followed shortly thereafter by the axe in the head. You know, that is an extreme reaction to someone slapping your brother, I don't know why I didn't notice that before.
Infidelity runs through the skeleton of this entire show.
I am very surprised that Martin told that whole story to Sonny. Sam's still haunting Jean, he thinks Jean killed Capoue to be special. Jean's finally realising he needs to be thinking about killing Nelson instead of ducking and weaving and waiting to be shot.
Jean arrives home to a wide awake Julie, he tells her about Sam and they manage to not fight for a whole night. Or tell her about Victor, whom he knows is stalking and planning to kill her and their kiddos. Sigh.
At Nelson's, Joey's brought a gun for him to kill Jean with "in case he decides to run"; pfft automatic says Nelson? Who uses automatics? As a Canadian, I've not even handled a handgun, we're far too docile and state-sleepy, but I hear Glocks are the cat's ass. Aren't they automatics? Turn it sideways!
Sonny comes in; for the first time I see Nelson as being much older than her. He is petulant because she was out late; he can't sleep without her here.
Martin is telling inappropriate stories at the breakfast table, all I got is that "all the best lessons are disgusting" (true) and that Maddy (Jemma Donovan) is using the name Casey on her avatar. Her storyline is starting to feel very Dateline / AfterSchool Special. Jean views from afar, he's so detached from them. Julie watches him get a scary text from Nelson; his face prompting her to ask if everything is all right, and once more, he kisses and pats her down. No notice about the psychopath(s).
Victor (Liam Garrigan) is hanging about outside Julie's studio, she's missed their meeting (and calls him an important client? NOBODY WOULD SAY THAT TO THEIR IMPORTANT CLIENT. Somebody get Continuity on the phone, STAT!) because she's off to see Maureen, can she take him for lunch? At her place? It's almost too good to be true for Victor, he's really looking forward to it.
Jean's in Nelson's bar, he looks so cuddly and harmless in a wooly jumper and glasses, doesn't he?
But then a little bit later, he flips his collar and it's stone cold killer again.
Almost blanks out that whole setting people on fire bit. He's asked Jean to come see him, not for a job, mind, he needs his help. Jean says he's made a decision: this has to end. Nelson has come to the same conclusion, but I'm thinking he's means it in a totally different way. He wants Jean to come with him today, he's cooking for people and going to collect his own ingredients. Nelson suggests Jean call Julie RIGHT NOW and cancel her plans and come with that evening and that tells me Nelson is aware that A) Victor has a tractor beam bringing Julie in as we speak and B) Victor is still very much indulging in the very worst funeral etiquette EVER.
Julie and Maureen are reminiscing about Atheist Sam and Julie makes the mistake of saying how much she loves Jean and she knows it all, it's all out on the table... Maureen spills about Claire (Tanya Fear). And Julie did not know that. She's such a good friend, she doesn't even lose her mind just then, wow.
Nelson has taken Jean back out to the garden (to get "ingredients" trust), while Casey / Maddy chats with online pal Steven of the great abs and sunglasses-covered face. He's pressing for "fotos" and it just breaks my heart how girls get sucked into that shite; and not always just the young ones.
Ah well, Julie waited to get home to fall apart and there is Victor as Michael Hillier, her important client, ringing her bell for lunch. She's clearly devastated but pulls him inside and there is no way a revenge fcuk will not be happening; maybe it will distract him enough that he doesn't kill her and go for the "Victor", hey? She's a mess and he soon takes over lunch prep from her; he's got mad knife skills: respect.
Martin's sneaking around Nelson and Sonny's house, waiting for Joey (Doug Allen) to scoot before texting Sonny, who doesn't want to see him today anyway.
Nelson and Jean are walking in the woods foraging for mushrooms: "lot of death in the forest" says Nelson, and feeds Jean fungi while Jean looks like he is clenching on his breakfast very hard with his bum. Nelson pulls out the gun, points it at a crouching Jean, tightens his finger
and...gets knocked the fcuk out.
Julie and Victor's dance continues, he enjoying the return to the joys of domestic life and she saying it's because he's a tourist and that line is fantastic. You know who else is a tourist and therefore a great parent-figure? Martin. Because he doesn't actually have to parent, just nip in and do the fun stuff, like listening to Julie and Jean have sex or grab Julie's butt, or bring Maddy chocolate. So nice and uncomplicated! Maybe not the sex bit.
Julie kisses a surprised Victor, who seems to be scouting for witnesses instead of responding. He really is extremely good-looking. It's a shame about his sadistic and necrophiliac leanings.They somehow manage to move past the kiss; long enough that she leaves him alone so he can unlock a door to break in later.
Back in the wood, Jean comes to and sees Nelson tied to a tree being punched by someone who must not know who he is. It's a couple of carjackers and this will end badly for them. Thankfully, the gun Joey gave Nelson doesn't fire (pfft automatics is right!) and Nelson tells the younger one Laurie (Jonno Davies) to check his wallet. Off Laurie sprints. This seems odd; why would carjackers have restraints with them? Ohhhhhh just when I didn't think I could love Nelson more, he tells carjacker Jason (Noah Maxwell Clarke) aka: the one that hasn't run off, that he's wandered into Narnia.
Aside: I loved The Chronicles of Narnia more than should be thought possible, and Aslan was why, but Nelson, sir, is no Aslan. He's the White Witch, I'm afraid. Even with his leonine countenance.
Jason doesn't know from The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe but he understands menace and off he runs too, leaving a gun, right between equally restrained Nelson and Jean.
Victor is marking territory all over Jean's house, arranging Julie's clothing including fancy ginch on her side of the bed and cue creepy serial killer panty-sniffing masturbation segue.
I just...don't understand. Julie KISSED him, he could have been sniffing her panties while peeling them off her body, but instead.
Sonny and Martin still haven't figured out that in order to stop doing this, they must actually stop doing this, but there they are in bed again. Martin thinks Nelson would kill them both, nahh says Sonny: just you. She knew Nelson before they were together, see, and she hated him. But she saw him at the hospice with his dying wife and saw him differently. I think the point of that is when she says she's no good either.
Oh nooo, while Victor is tossing Jean's crib, he finds the pendant and chain that Martin grabbed from the floor next to Sonny's bed: it's engraved and it's from Nelson, to Sonny. He smiles, which means he knows exactly what that means.
Maddy comes in and takes a picture of the drugs she stole from Martin, is she planning to send that to Sunglasses Steve??
In the forest, nobody's managed to get their restraints off yet, so Nelson is regaling Jean with stories about the friends he's killed (he doesn't let anyone else kill friends) and where he was planning to bury Jean and he wants to know why Jean didn't turn around when he pulled out the gun? Jean suggest that maybe he's accepted death but Nelson pffts. Nobody accepts death. He waxes poetic about the first time he killed someone, at 17, and how it changed him: he no longer thought of anything beyond life; it just ends, without giving any answers. Anarchist Mob Boss with existential roots says what?
Julie's explaining all about Claire to sister Nina (Lucy Ackhurst), who thinks this is a marvellous bit of ammunition for the divorce. Yes, there is that comfort! Julie is not ready to divorce Jean, and really: you are or you aren't. You can't force it, but when you know, you KNOW.
Speaking of answers, Victor has popped round to see Sonny, who is dismayed by his presence and wary when she learns of his finding her chain.
Jean managed to call Martin, but he doesn't really know where they are, and it's dark now. Martin comes anyway and it's going fairly well until Jean's phone dies.
Casey / Maddy is all made up and wandering the streets to meet...Steven (Bailey Hayden), who looks nothing like his picture, of course. At least he's not a 60 year old dude, he does seem close to her age and she eventually caves and agrees to go for a drink with him. DATELINE
I can see why she has a drink with him, though, he's a straightforward talker and she so badly wants attention. She shows him the drugs; he offers to sell them for her.
Ghost Sam is forcing Jean to choose between suicide and murder; daylight finds Martin back searching the woods and he finds them! Martin sees right away that Nelson was going to kill Jean and threatens him, but the real danger for Nelson is Jean and he knows it. Jean holds the gun sideways and everything! The kill shot! while Nelson taunts him about enjoying the power. What should he do, he ASKED THE MAN WHO WAS GOING TO KILL HIM. Nelson seems as exasperated as I am.
Oh ffs, Jean can't do it and unties him and everything. This man had a gun to your head, Jean! Literally, not even figuratively like most of the time!
They give Nelson a lift home, like you would, and he tells Jean that letting him go was a weak thing to do while Sonny hisses "Victor knows!" at Martin. Exciting times, these. Back at the office, Martin says it's gonna get tougher but Jean says he's "cool with that" and when did that happen, exactly? Is he reconciling with his essentially murderous, but oddly weak nature? NO comprendo. We're out and I will see you for two more! Cheers