We're back already for Below Deck and a repeater to the franchise: Jackie Siegel, the Queen of Versailles herself! I quite liked her in the documentary, she had an unshakeable sense of self and I admired her intestinal fortitude. Let's see what kind of shenanigans she gets up to this time, now that she's on the BIG boat. Rolling into my recap of Below Deck S8:E14 Hide the Salami after the break!
We open right in the middle of the stupid fight we left, with chief steward Francesca Rubi hurling personal insults at steward Elizabeth Frankini for daring to bang deckhand James Hough in a guest cabin WITHOUT PERMISSION.
*gasp* *pearls clutched*
To put it in perspective, James's boss bosun Eddie Lucas cares not even one small eggplant parm (which is what Elizabeth calls James in her phone) about the indiscretion but Francesca will attempt to use it to fire Elizabeth, you mark my words. Attempt to fire AGAIN, this is, what, three times?
After getting shrieked at unprofessionally by her boss, Elizabeth heads out on deck to call her spiritual adviser / energy healer because she is hippy dippy all day and all night. Captain Lee Rosbach wanders back on boat while Elizabeth is in session, sure!
Francesca wakes up the next morning, she's disappointed she wasn't more mean to Elizabeth and sad she gave her so many chances.
You can't fix mean. You can't fix mean and willfully blind.
CC: Jenna from Below Deck Sailing Yacht.
It's Elizabeth's birthdayyyyyyyy!! She's 30 today! We're starting our charter and Elizabeth is starting her 30s, I wonder what James will give her as a present??
Does it rhyme with SpegSmant Smarmesan?
Another fruitless and pointless chewing out of Elizabeth by Francesca, such a waste of everyone's time. Francesca goes to the bridge after and cries about it, honestly, I don't know what you need but you're not getting it by trying to grind Elizabeth into the ground, F.
She's decided she can't take any more, she's gone to the Captain. Again. After crying on steward Ashling Lorger's shoulder for a bit, that is. Honestly. I know they're in a pressure cooker, but Francesca has locked in on Elizabeth and there's no dissuading her. She's being extremely unprofessional.
Captain Lee is unhappy to hear that James and Elizabeth played Hide the Salami in the guestroom, he calls Eddie up to the Bridge, then James for a very blunt warning: one more time and you're out. He thinks he's going to have the same talk with Elizabeth, but Francesca has HAD it. It's her or Elizabeth, so our troubled stew is about to be fired on her birthday.
An unknowing Elizabeth continues to work on laundry and visits with James shortly, imagining all the cute and romantic things he's going to do for her birthday.
Which is...nothing. Absolutely nothing.
Up in the main salon, Francesca and Ashling are now both crying about how difficult it is to have to fire Elizabeth when they're the only ones working. They point this out while standing and crying together in the sunny salon while Elizabeth works her arse off below deck.
Oh okay, so Elizabeth isn't going to be fired on her birthday, she's going to be replaced after this charter, Francesca tells Ashling. It's Ashling who suggests they get rid of Elizabeth NOW (on her birthday), they can just push through.
Is that like Ashling pushed through a bacterial infection and ended up having to take antibiotics because she pushed through seeing the doctor that was brought on board?
Meanwhile! Newly anointed lead deckhand Isabel 'Izzy' Wouters is having her own trouble with deckhand Rob FromCanada who insists on "joking" about her cracking the whip. It's super fun.
Chef Rachel Hargrove is super excited about her complex menu planning for this charter (she's always super excited about her food, if she didn't have...issues, she'd be the perfect chef); this scares Francesca and she decides to not fire Elizabeth on her birthday, she can wait until after the charter.
It's already guest arrival time! Where did the time go?! There wasn't even any provisioning drama! Okay, Primary David Siegel and Jackie Siegel are in the hizzy, I mean bizzy? I'll try for a pic later on, there was no good approach shot!
Oh goodness. We've got offspring from about 18 to 55, that's quite the range and Jackie's already threatening to take her clothes off. One of those offspring is Daniel, he's the 18 year old so he's going to be at the bar the whole time.
Primary David demurs the champagne on offer, sticking with his large Styrofoam cup of sweet tea. As the deck crew unloads tens of thousands of dollars worth of Louis Vuitton luggage, he searches for the cup he put down for a moment. "We don't throw out his styrofoam cup" chides Primary Jackie in her designer romper dripping with gold chains.
A successful de-docking later (yes, that is like an embarcation but not nearly as much fun to say), they're at sea and having snackies and bevvies thanks to Rachel and the crew.
What a surprise, the two young sons both think Ashling is hot. Although they think the whole boat is full of hot blonde Australians, so there's that.
Woooowww Primary David has 14 children. That's a LOT of diapers. A bunch of the guests and the Primaries come up to the bridge, Captain Lee shares about the loss of his son to a drug overdose. Primary Jackie and David lost their daughter 5 years ago, she gives him a hug and invites the captain to dinner.
Rachel is prepping Mahi Mahi tuna and lamb chops for lunch, watch those items! They've figured in all the promos!
Everyone gets on water toys but our Primaries; the Queen of Versailles has her bosom out and I don't know where to look.
Primary Jackie is super sweet, though, 100% midwestern. She brought her own Versace floatie in case the luxury superyacht she's paying six figures for didn't have one.
Remember the Mahi Mahi? Francesca gives Rachel the written lunch order, which includes 5 Mahi Mahi dishes, but she SAYS three. Rachel counts four, keep an eye on that dollar under the shell!
It's our lovely Queen of Versailles who gets to watch everyone else enjoy their lunch, with a fixed smile on her face because Rachel missed a name count. She blames this on Francesca.
Oh and one of the sons because Rachel figured it was okay to short him while she worked on it.
Captain Lee is listening to alllllll of this on the radio, he's getting cranky. He comes down to the galley where Rachel vents her frustration about the service she's getting, or rather not getting. Captain Lee checks with Francesca, who has her written order showing 5 orders right there...
Out on the water, Izzy's still having trouble with Rob. He's not insolent, exactly, just slower to do things than he was and now everything comes with a "joke". Like when she tells him to do something and he "jokes" - "what's the magic word?"
She talks to him and James later; are they okay with her promotion? Why are they being weird? Rob not only doesn't admit to being weird, he downplays her promotion, she should get over herself.
I don't even have to use male pronouns in that sentence, do I?
Captain Lee is not looking forward to dinner tonight, their shared grief over a child lost to drugs is daunting. It's like ripping the bandaid off again.
Most of the table talk revolves around COVID-19 news and gossip, I jumped a little when one of the guests said "President Trump has suspended travel from Europe" because I never ever used that title in my head. I just waited it out.
Eventually, they do talk about the unfortunate club they're in, Captain Lee is hoping to learn about some coping skills to deal with the loss of his son. Just talking about it is too much for the Captain, he leaves the table in tears.
The crew got together and made Elizabeth a really crappy birthday cake LOL. It's layers of buttered storebought white bread with sprinkles in between and chocolate syrup on top. It couldn't be more trashy if it was a Sweet and Sour Hotdog Casserole. She loves it!
What she really wants...is at least a kiss from James. How about a HAPPY BIRTHDAY, ARSEHOLE? Honestly, if you can't say hbd to the person you're shagging in case it leads to more effort, you are a shit person.
She goes to bed by herself, angry and unbelieving. James is on lates with Ashling, who's babysitting the two youngest Siegels at the bar. One downs half a bottle of Hennessy, she's starting to regret her friendliness.
Chasing around of extremely drunk (albeit polite) 18 and 19 year old is no picnic, especially on a boat in the middle of the ocean in the middle of the night. Ashling finally lies to one that the hot tub is out of order, I'm just impressed he managed to get his swimtrunks on after half a bottle of Hennessy!
He checks the hot tub, sees it's NOT out of order, thankfully chooses to return to the bar to complain instead of getting in himself. He's entered the belligerent stage of drunk, berating Ashling and James for not serving him any more alcohol.
To be fair: they totally would have served any other person on that charter until they passed out, there's some ageism creeping in.
And we're out! Cheers!