Episode Report Card
Al Lowe: B+ | Grade It Now!

Back at the hotel, the little squarehead is singing "Row, Row, Row Your Boat" to the shaking Mrs. G when Trixie comes back. It's cute as hell, especially when she sings the first line "gently down the steam." Trixie tells Mrs. G that she needs her to do something for her. "When Farnum is here," she says, "so we can buy you time to get well, you have to fake being high." Mrs. G looks on wide-eyed and sweaty, and comprehends. "You can do it, Alma," Trixie says, gently. "Look at all the practice you had."

Al enters the whore's ready room to find the sobbing woman who ran past him a moment ago. She is huddled up on a bench, her arms around her knees. "You'd better have a paying dwarf underneath you," Al says in what is possibly the best throwaway line of the episode. The woman can't stop crying, and Al tells her to shut up and tell him what she did with the guy. He's less mean than his normal self. "I know you didn't fuck him," he says. "Did you suck his prick?" The woman says the john didn't want to show it to her until he had a hard-on. "That's what you call a mistake of youth," Al says. He asks if she kissed the guy, French-like or normal. "Normal," she says, a tad too offended considering what she gets up to all day. Al says that considering all these answers, any hooplehead who drank from the same water glass as the sick guy would have the same cause to sit around weeping, "except I can't kick his ass and send him out to work." Funny, Al, but there's subtext here you don't yet know. "My mom died of it when we was coming out," the whore says. "And that's when Daddy gave us up." The merest, briefest flicker of...something...passes across Al's face. "Well," he says, "that sad story makes me believe maybe you was exposed and ain't a candidate for it no more." He lingers a moment while she cries and, walking swiftly out, tells her quietly to "stick to hand-jobs a day or two, if you like." Oh, Al, you are the soul of sympathy.

Trixie comes down to the front desk of the hotel, saying they need new linens in Mrs. G's room. E.B. says he just provided new sheets. "And now they got sick on 'em," Trixie smarts back. E.B. sends her out, telling her to take them to Wu for cleaning. She heads out, running into Sol in the thoroughfare. He's all sweet to her, asking how she is, and trying to help with the sheets. He reminds her to tell Mrs. G that he has been calling for her, according to Bullock's wishes.Doc returns to his shack, and has already taken off his coat and put down his bag when he realizes Jane is sitting in the corner at a table. "Jesus CHRIST," he says, trying not to jump. Jane finds this hilarious. "I take it," Doc says, "you've been out on a...hoot." Doc talks just like my grandmother sometimes. Next thing I know, he's going to say something about being so mad he's going to snatch someone baldheaded or jerk a knot in their tail. I did not grow up in the country, but half of my family did, and sometimes when I watch this show it feels uh, like Thanksgiving dinner, if you know what I mean. Jane says yes, she's been drunk a while, and what about it. "Question was well meant," Doc smarts. "Like, if you was a farmer, I'd ask you how the farmin' was going." Good one, Doc. Jane huffs that she did, you know, lose her best friend and all, so she comes by this drunkenness honestly, and Doc says he does know that. He's sorry about it, that's clear. Jane asks about the little girl, and Doc tells her she's fine and that the widow is taking care of her. "A whore from the Gem's with her, too," he adds, and Jane has the balls to get mad about it. "The widow has health problems of her own," Doc explains, "and Trixie's taking care of her." Jane ramps up the 'tude: "Oh, Trixie being the whore?" Doc cuts through the bullshit. "Well," he says, "you have high standards pertainin' to other people." Exactly, Doc. Jane says she's not judging anyone, she's just seeking information, but Doc can't take any more. "Well, are you adequately informed?" he asks, opening the door for her leave. "Because I am in the midst of a situation." Jane shrugs: "Oh, smallpox?" Doc is shocked to hear that she knows about it. She tells him about running across Andy in the woods. "Unless he caught it from a trout," she says, "I figured some in the camp had it, too." Doc wonders what the guy was doing in the woods. "Someone threw him there," Jane says. "Anyway, he's better now." Doc asks her how she feels, herself, and Jane gets uppity. "This is my point," he says. "You been caring for a sick man who doesn't seem to have gotten you sick." Jane calls him a wise fucking owl, but he goes on, asking if, seeing as she has a gift for it, she'll stay in camp and help him in the sick tents. "My best friend died," she says as an answer, and Doc yells that Bill ain't coming back. "Now," he says, "will you help me? You can do your drinkin' off work, like I do."

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