With regularly scheduled Divas reviewer, Maia, buried under the actual work that pays our bills and keeps our baby — by which I mean our actual child — in couture (she’s all about Hustle, Loyalty and Respect in real life, not just reality TV), it fell to me, the intrepid interloper to sum up a show that might as well have been subtitled “This is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things.”
The main through line of this episode is Nikki B wearing ridiculous outfits while…wait, that’s every episode. ANYWAY, the A plot of this episode is Nikki and a semi-willing Brie attempting to show Paige how real English ladies do things. It goes over about as well as if someone showed up at our door and tried to southsplain the intricacies of dogsled racing to two born and bred Alaskans. Paige, unsurprisingly, is having very little of it.
Though maybe it was karma, as Paige made it a rough week on safari life after she cruelly attacks a baby elephant (so that’s where they stuck Justin Gabriel?) to open up the show.
Also, Nattie drops the following bit of zen in a title card:
Guys are complicated
Guys are annoying
All they want to do is eat Chipotle
First, Natalya, your haiku sucks. Secondly, I will accept no Chipotle slander from you, Mrs. Cat Fancy. (Also, eew, cat pr0n onscreen? Completely unnecessary to hear about ‘Tupaws’ being “locked in.” ewww.)
In any event, we’re off to jolly old England for the first European tour of the year. The ladies first learn which of the tour subtours each will be headed on. Completely coincidentally, Alicia Fox ends up on the same tour as her ex-beau, Bad News Barrett. I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news to anyone who thinks this is merely unhappy coincidence. But, that entire plotline bores me (drunkenly not-quite-hitting on the ex? Innovative reality show booking!”
Speaking of a snoozer so is the obligatory Eva Marie story. All-Red-Everything is working hard training, She faces hardships, for which Jonathan supplies the voice of manreason. Rinse. Repeat. Yawn. The specifics this week are that Eva’s bruises from training are repeatedly mistaken for signs of physical abuse by random passers-by. Chortle, chortle?
All the interesting stuff happens on the Bella/Paige end of the tour anyway, so let’s stick to that.
Before the tour sets out, Paige is excited to share “British culture, and the British way of drinking” with the rest of the cast, but then she repeats herself.
The first dark cloud on the horizon (speaking of Britain) is Nikki announcing she’s going to be “sipping that champagne in a five-star lounge” (which is my cue to refill Maia’s glass from our decidedly not five-star Prosecco in our living room which I’d give a solid 3.5 stars thank you very much.) And it case it wasn’t clear how and where the bubbles will be consumed: “five-star lounge, getting our fancy on.”
“No one does that in England” says the, you know, actual Brit. I’m sure this will be resolved calmly and sans drams.
So Monday Night Raw and TYSON MF CHANDLER strolls casually through the bowels of the arena. Like you do, just randomly.
“Do you play basketball?” they ask before posing for awkward selfies in a moment that probably would have ended up on the cutting room floor without some drive by cattiness from Summer Rae towards Natalya’s in-coloring-process hair. “Nice weave!” is Nattie’s response on Summer’s way out of the jerkstore.
Nattie seems to have recovered enough to disclose to Paige that the Bellas grew up on a farm and Nikki used to work at Hooters. Before, you know, them, in case you were wondering. Paige’s response is literally SippingTea dot Gif. This show could get more meta, but it would require Judah Friedlander deadpanning Pop-Up Video style commentary.
The Bellas arrive in their hotel room, and Nikki is again WEARING OUR PLACEMATS as a jumpsuit. It’s a look. She’s also admiring her collection of hats for the ladies to wear out for a proper tea. Paige, in full Wednesday Adams-meets-The Sandlot mode is unimpressed.
“When’s tea time?” Nikki asks “Are you excited for it?”
“Tea time?!?!?” Paige responds in an interstitial.
“British people love hats” Nikki tells the girl from Norwich.
“I have like a bunch of these at home” Paige says
“Oh, you do?”
Paige wants dive bars, she wants fish and chips. Seth wants to hang out with Paige far more than poncing about the streets of Sheffield with Nikki. Nikki, who decides her Spice Girl name would be Classy Spice. Victoria Beckham is bringing suit in Wrestler’s Court for Gimmick Infringement.
“I have planned what is a big part of U.K. and European culture, and that is tea time.” Nikki hands out the teahats, and puts on her finest lace gloves. Paige, wearing ripped leggings does not appear especially interested in playing Duchess Dressup just now, but gamely puts on the biggest hat available. To which Nikki responds “too bad you don’t have a cute dress to go with it.”
“I’m so close to headbutting a bitch.” DO IT! DO IT! DO IT! “I don’t want to spend time in a room with women with big hats. and no souls.”
Nikki remains determined to have a good time. Brie is going along with it, though even she balks when Nikki declares they must only drink with their pinkies up in the air. Paige has had enough noting tea is for royals, not for the common folk “like me.” Brie, as downhome as always allows that fish and chips do sound good about now (god yes they do.)
“Just enjoy it. Pretend!” Nikki says plaintively. As Paige runs out the door and steals their town car as the Bellas commiserate that being from England, Paige must just not understand the joys of tea time. Be more British, damn you.
We catch up with Paige and she’s in her element, in a dive bar with LANA!!!! who not only is doing headstands, but maintains full kayfabe. Nostorovia to you too, Ms. Perry.
Back at the arena, Nikki confronts Paige about the latter’s disdain for tea.
That whole scene seemed pretentious. And fake.” Because, you know, it was.
“Wait, how am I a phony?” Says Nikki. Just let it lie there.
We have dramabombs. “What a bitch.”
Anyway the Bellas join John Cena for dinner. Cena imparts some Atitude Adjusting wisdom before informing the waiter that he’ll be passing on dessert because “my dessert is in an orange dress.” Ew.
Maia, total mark for Cena that she is, says “John Cena’s the best part of this show right up until he’s the worst part of this show.” In case that wasn’t explicit enough, Nikki informs the poor man “he’s going to be having orange lace for dessert.” Double ew.
The next day, over fish and chips (GIMME GIMME GIMME), Paige admits to Brie “I feel common as f***” some times” and Brie points out Nikki like being fancy because it’s opposite of how the twins grew up. And now we’ve learned something here today.
I know I wasn’t going to talk about the other plots, but ladies and gentleman, Natalya (respodning to Emma’s question as to what is the species a particular flower they see.)
“It’s a geranium. A derivative of the South African culture based off the 1929 novel To Kill A Mockingbird.”
“No, for real”
We’ve learned something else today. And that is Nattie is probably plastered much of the time. Day drinking, ftw.
Anyway, back to the Bellas and the Brit, Paige realizes she reacted a little harshly, apologizes, and we’re all besties again.