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Timber Creek Lodge Picked A Bad Week To Try To Get Off Carbs

Nikita gives everyone a throbbing pain in the ass, and Mark gives Sarah D. Bunting whiplash with his brat-to-mensch transformation.

The arrival of a group of "babymooning" guests -- who have chosen not to take a vacation from either lip injections or OCD morning juice concoctions -- puts even more strain on Jamie and Nikita's relationship. Well, "relationship"; Nikita's sticking to her disingenuous, passive-aggressive, "nobody tells ME anything" guns, and Jamie's too afraid of another snit to talk to her. The guests reward her with a larger tip than the other Lodgers get, though, probably because everyone else on the staff took dictation and relayed it to Nikita, or scrambled to fulfill requests they knew she'd blow off.

Folded into Nikita's heel turn is a weird mid-episode face turn for Mark, who begins the episode as brattily as you might imagine when he's called on his fucking-in-the-guest-lodge shit by Jamie (to my surprise, he doesn't actually say the actual phrase "you're not the boss of me") but then swings around to back Jamie with Nikita, advising Jamie, "You cannot take any of it personally," and vowing to keep things moving forward because he knows Nikita and can handle her. Maybe offering Mark the opportunity to behave less turdishly is his reward for coming off like kind of a cling-on in his other storyline, in which he gets Jenna in trouble, canoodles with her during staff meetings, volunteers to help her clean toilets, and gets a "dude needs to give me some room" talking-head from Jenna for his efforts.

And what does Louise get for her efforts to lance the Nikita boil? Your Lodgers, first to worst:

  1. Louise
    Louise is over it with the guests, and with basically doing her job and half of Nikita's, but she keeps that attitude away from the guests themselves; it's probably her efforts that get Nikita the extra tip. She's pissed at Mark and Jenna for messing up the beds in the lodge, she's pissed at Nikita for creating workflow problems, and she's direct about why these things create issues -- and doesn't back down even when Nikita tries the "if I had a problem with you, I wouldn't pretend to be your friend" angle. Louise's response to Nikita's whingy "I've been nothing but lovely to all of you" is, more or less verbatim, "AYFKM?"
  2. Blake
    Backs Jamie's play with Nikita when a guest wants coffee in her room at 4:45 AM -- to wit, Nikita will balk, but someone has to do it -- and then verbally eye-rolls her "um, I totally would have done that?" comments later.

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    And with good reason. If it's clear other people have gone the long way to cover for you instead of asking you for anything, repeatedly, the problem isn't that they don't know their job descriptions. The problem is that you're...a problem.

  3. Colston
    Does what he's asked, charms the guests with stories of his ski/boarding career, stays out of various kerfuffles.
  4. Jenna
    She's not happy with getting a ration from Jamie, but she controls her temper, because she has nowhere to go if she gets fired, which is how you deal with your own work fuck-ups in a productive manner, Mark. She's also hustling for most of the episode, including pitching in to decorate the last-minute cake the guests requested (and doing pretty well! That color is scary, but the design's nice), and implying that Mark is getting in the way of her doing her job.
  5. Jamie
    The talking-head reveal that Jamie was a doula/"director of ambience" for a few friends isn't surprising; neither is his tiptoeing around Nikita, and his uptalky approach to managerial criticism -- and even to calling a meeting. Just announce that the meeting is happening, for god's sake; the cameras are all in the room already. The staff will figure it out. "Do you understand? ...Can you say 'yes I understand'?" isn't a great look either, and if you want to be the boss, you have to learn how to grit your teeth and tell people what to do even if the reaction isn't one you look forward to. It's difficult; tough shit. Issue the order, go to the next to-do item.
  6. The guests
    I mean, I guess I'm supposed to hate on them for doing this

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    during Mark's heli-skiing spiel, but it's Mark, so when the primary responds to his "Any questions?" by reminding him which umpteen bags belong to her, I can't hate it. They have a lot of requests, but they helpfully make ingredients lists for the kitchen, and it's nothing that outlandish.

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    Exactly. They're super-high-maint, but pleasant about it and satisfied with the service.

  7. Cynthia
    If you're that flummoxed by what activities a pregnant lady might like to participate in, here's an idea: ask her. She's pregnant, not in a coma.
  8. Mark
    Behold, the "I don't have to listen to anything you say because you're not as conventionally attractive as I" face, which I'd like to take off Mark's head with a mandoline slicer.

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    You aren't the boss; you don't get to snap at the actual boss, Jamie, with shit like "let me finish my fucking sentence," when "fucking" in the guest quarters is why you're getting your beads read for you in the first damn place; learn to read a room, because I've seen "wants a man draped over me during a work powwow" body language, and Jenna's ain't it; and it's pronounced "new-clee-ar," NOT "NU-KYOO-LAR."

    It's great that he wants to help Jamie deal with Nikita in the interests of keeping shit moving on the work front, but if it's about "the good of the lodge," maybe don't funk up said lodge with your bodily fluids and self-congratulation?

    ...Is Mark's whole TCL Personality (tm) a goof? Is he actually this slappable, or is he running down some kind of slappability checklist designed to annoy me specifically? If he walks through a shot next week guzzling raisins and extolling their delicious virtues, I will know I'm being punked.

  9. Nikita
    Her bestie on the staff compared her to Kim Jong Il. So...yeah. And leaving aside the fact that I don't see how this sci-fi-looking puree blob qualifies Nikita for a bigger tip,

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    it's hard to figure how she's managed to stay employed as anything but an in-house chef adviser for, like, Stouffer's -- though even that would probably chap her delicate ass, since she would be getting feedback from bosses and focus groups even if she didn't have to deal directly with people. If I had to guess, I'd say she's trying to get herself fired, but she might want to rethink that strategy given that her snotty, bare-minimum work "ethic" is on national television. But "they love my food"! Uh huh. So they told you when you...asked them directly. Because they're polite. If they knew you'd gone to bed while dessert was still in progress, they might feel a little differently about tipping you extra.

    I didn't see her in the next-ons, and won't miss her if she's ejected. Eighty percent of life is repetitive, pointless aggro, honey. Fucking get over it.

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