Hi bbs! Welcome back to The Bold Type, where this week our girls each have a complex, so here’s to fun times talking stuff out!
Let’s start with Jane’s self-described “God complex.” That’s right, friends, Perfect Ben is super Christian, as in praying before each meal and sporting a cross tattoo, though we don’t learn much more of his religious specifics. We just see Jane silently freaking out when Ben thanks the lord for his lunch, and continuing to bring up his “being religious” in conversation with Kat and Sutton while vehemently denying she has a problem with it.
Meanwhile, Ryan aka Pinstripe shows up out of nowhere into Jane’s unemployment office aka a coffee shop where she camps out all day ordering nothing but water and a mini biscotti. Given the size of the apartment she and Sutton share, I find it hard to believe that after a few days of unemployment she’s struggling that much, but that’s not the point. The point it, Pinstripe is his usual cocky self and tells Jane all about how he’s a stringer for Page Six by night (aka trolling fancy bars/parties for celebrity gossip) and writing a novel by day. Ok, dude, whatever. Jane, desperate for a writing job, talks him into letting her come to swanky bar Bronze Bomber (which gave me immediate Buffy flashbacks so from now on I’m calling this bar The Bronze) to try her hand at this gossip reporting thing. At the bar, Jane figures out that a Knicks player in the corner is talking to a Nike rep when he’s sponsored by Adidas, thereby concluding that he’s switching brand deals. Pinstripe is impressed.
However, when Jane later spots the news anchor that interviewed her in The Bronze kissing another woman, meaning he’s cheating on his pregnant wife, she does not want to report on it because it “feels dirty.” When Pinstripe insists it’s part of the job and that it’s the news anchor’s own fault, Jane runs back to Perfect Ben and they have a heart to heart about the real reason Jane doesn’t believe in God. It’s because her mom was religious and then she died of cancer when Jane was a kid; despite Jane’s desperate praying to keep her mom with her, she died anyway, so she stopped believing there could be a God. Ben says he’s sorry that happened and they sort of touch on the difference between having faith and thinking there’s one holy being that’s going to make everything ok all the time, but only a little. This is super tricky territory so I guess I commend The Bold Type for trying to deal with it (Kat also mentions how Adena prays 5 times/day, though we never see that), but I feel very meh about this storyline anyway. I mean, I don’t like Ben, so maybe that’s why. Anyway Jane asks Ben what his stance or pre-marital sex is and he smiles with his dimples, saying “I think we’re good,” which, okay, and then they make out.
Meanwhile, in Sutton-ville, we’ve got an inferiority complex happening. Sutton is amazingly good at her job, but she’s still “just” an assistant, whereas Kat is head of a department after the same amount of time working at Scarlet. Not only that, but Sutton is seduced by the seemingly effortless power and dynamism of Brooke Langley, a fictional “influencer” who’s being featured in Scarlet. The two hit it off at Brooke’s fitting, and Sutton gets invited to The Bronze to hang with all of Brooke’s famous friends. There, Sutton offers to buy a round of drinks for the small group on the company credit card, which Oliver gave her permission to use for such things as networking and the like.
Unfortunately, Brooke and her friends are celebrity stereotypes and have the bartender add “some party favors” aka cocaine to the bill, so that it ends up being over $800. Ruh roh. Sutton has too much integrity for this, and tries to talk Brooke down, but Brooke insists that she does it with editors all the time and it’s never been an issue. In an emergency huddle, Jane and Kat suggest either putting her foot down or paying for it herself, the latter of which is not an option. As soon as Sutton opens her mouth to basically break up with Brooke, Brooke informs her that she’s now invited to a dinner party with some people from Chanel and a bunch of other fashion big wigs. Sutton can’t bring herself to turn down such a huge potential boon for her career, so she signs the bill. Honestly I can’t blame her. She deserves to advance in her career and even though these means will probably end up coming back to haunt her (can’t wait for that scene between her and mama Jacqueline), it does seem like her industry is a little pay-to-play. I don’t endorse her action, but I also get it.
Finally, we’ve got Kadena land, where as usual all is not well until it is. Kat’s got an inferiority complex too, as in she’s really jealous of Adena’s friends, who are maybe all exes or maybe not. Kat wants to meet Adena’s friends, since Adena knows Jane and Sutton, plus they’re super involved with each other so it only makes sense. At Kat’s own insistence, they head to one of her friends’ parties at a lesbian bar, where almost everyone has short and/or asymmetrical haircuts and there are several couples making out. Adena is pulled into a vortex of these friends/possible exes, and Kat gets real jealous real fast. Pull it together, girl!
Later, at home, Kat passive aggressively asks how many people Adena has been with, and specifically how many of the women in that bar, and Adena responds that the past is in the past. This sends Kat into a social media stalking cycle to piece together the answer, and she finds that Adena has quickly gotten into new relationships after old ones ended. This makes Kat feel even more insecure, which kind of makes sense given that Adena was still dating Coco when they started sort-of seeing each other. But I don’t like how fast Kat lets herself spin out of control without talking to Adena about it. They had such a good sex talk in the premiere! They’ve already had practice with difficult conversations!
Luckily, eventually they do talk this one out too. Adena says she’s been with a lot of people and she thought she was protecting Kat with the “past in the past” comment. Then she makes a really heart-shattering speech about how she’s scared but she’s choosing to be in a country that doesn’t want her, where she can’t leave to visit her mother because she won’t be let back in, because she loves Kat. Kat responds with an “I love you too,” and all the queer womxn watching this probably melted into the floor. The one thing that could’ve been done differently in this scene, for me, would be Kat apologizing to Adena for her jealousy. Adena makes a huge effort to make Kat feel like everything that’s important to her is important to Adena too- her job, her friends. Kat just thanks her, but doesn’t say she’s sorry for being so accusatory or say anything about prioritizing Adena’s wants and needs outside the bubble of their relationship at all. Adena deserves to have friends too, without fear of making her girlfriend jealous.
That’s it for this week! Overall a solid episode. The preview for next week shows Jane being pretty Abigail Fisher-y which I’m not excited about at all! But I’ll be here anyway, with this wonderful and wildly imperfect show.