I’ve been waiting for this moment my whole life: the Nico episode. I’m fully prepared for Gavin Leatherwood to both block me on social media and dox me and pay someone to put gumballs under my mattress so I always have a slight but unignorable backache when all this is over. He would be right to do so, and I’ve always wanted to feel like The Princess and the Pea.
Nico, Nico, Nico. That sneaky little fox. Those boyish charms and boyishly tousled hair hide the dirty, and yet still definitely boyish, truth. Nico has been shamelessly cheating on his girlfriend Maya, who we haven’t met yet, but I’m still rooting for. Send him back to the Ethereum meetup from whence he came, Maya!
Although a doghouse is a cozy place to be, and I did literally gasp when Leighton casually mentions her brother’s girlfriend at the end of the episode, I am readying myself for a plot twist. Is Nico in an open, long-distance relationship, perhaps? He wouldn’t be the first. Maybe he’s polyamorous? That would be progressive, Mindy Kaling. The options are endless, but if he is eventually revealed to be a cheater, I am going to feel very sad for Kimberly, who is transfixed by his dick.
It’s times like these you really mourn the limitations of the English language. Is there a penis equivalent to pussywhipped? Dick-whipped sounds way too violent. In any case, Kimberly is high off the dick. Hypnotized by it. She has sex with Nico, not once, not twice, but six times after their post-dinner hook-up. What refractory periods these two have on them, seriously.
“His sex is amazing and I can’t stop thinking about it,” Kimberly dishes to her roommates (sans Leighton, who has been banned from knowing any details) after the day’s round one. Note how she says “his sex” and not the more common “the sex” or even “sex with him.” It’s my belief that the use of “his sex” points to an innate sexual quality that nests within Nico. I think it’s his great immune system.
It’s very exciting for Kimberly, whose sexual experiences up until now have been limited to tired grunting with her high school boyfriend, but she takes it too far. She skips work and classes, including her Econ class, which she’s slowly flunking. Then, she ruins her chance at extra credit by inviting Nico to bang in her professor’s office, which he naturally walks into just as the pants come off. Come on, Kimberly. Show some respect.
Things are simpler for the other Murray sibling, Leighton, who successfully defines her relationship with Alicia. Girlfriends alert! This comes as very good news — Leighton has been noticeably more generous and gentle to her peers since entering the relationship, likely because being honest with at least one person in her life has released some of her building pressure. Yes, I did attend my kindergarten’s “honesty is the best policy” class. I imagine that Leighton’s reluctance to come out to the rest of the world will eventually spoil the joy, but we’ll get there when we get there.
While Leigh’s relationship with Alicia gets locked down, her friendship with Whitney is just getting unlocked, baby. It seems about time. I’ve been wondering why a famous senator’s daughter and self-proclaimed snooty New Yorker haven’t become fast friends since that’s the exact genetic makeup of every private school in the city. But when Whitney accidentally comes clean about her affair with Dalton, Leighton very amusingly says that “while I’m sure [an affair with a married soccer coach named Dalton] is considered some juicy stuff where you’re from, I went to a New York prep school.” Leighton, she’s from Seattle. Relax.
Whitney is slowly moving on from her breakup, dealing with its abrupt and callous ending pretty well, all grooming and potentially devastating life consequences considered. She’s interested in Canaan again and spends a few delightful moments with him eating nachos and meeting his friends in the Black affinity house.
One of them remarks that he’s surprised to see Canaan with a girl in the daytime because he usually “sneaks them in his room at night like some kind of sex Batman.” You heard it here first, folks, teen boys are taking a stand against meaningless sex.
Bela nailed her submission packet and got into the Catullan, her primary goal since stepping foot on campus, only rivaled by her primal desire to see a bunch of men naked. It’s a huge milestone for her, and it’s sweet watching her nerd out over the Catullan’s collection of comedian signatures, undoubtedly imagining her name one day among them … but … <3
Everything about the club shrieks “misogynistic weirdos who have never been told ‘no’ before.” The members might as well print out photos of Drake and pin them to their shirts while texts with Millie Bobby Brown are projected onto their house walls in a piece of experimental theater. Bela got into the initial recruitment round partly because she gave six handjobs; the alumni the club planned to take a huge donation from was an openly racist, anti-woman big stinker; “nice” guy Ryan sexually harassed Bela, which all her friends agreed was a problem. It’s hard to believe that Catullan membership is really something that Bela, otherwise so outspoken and self-assured, wants to be a part of.
But, as far as we know, she does really, really want to be a part of it. Upsettingly, Ryan sexually harasses Bela again, dry humping her and abruptly unzipping his pants. This all terrified me, but Bela quickly shut the situation down, clearly nervous about incurring Ryan’s wrath but thankfully valuing her wellbeing more.
After that, she tells Kimberly she’ll be okay if she doesn’t get into Catullan, probably the first time we’ve seen her unyielding love of the club waver. It’s unfortunate that Ryan’s reaction to her rejection spurred a reevaluation of membership and not the fact that, you know, there’s clearly an unaddressed sexual-assault problem in the club, but you can’t fault her for wanting a dream to be as pure and perfect as she’d imagined it. She worries over her phone when the decision deadline approaches and is visibly relieved when it turns out that she did get in, rejected groper notwithstanding.
Although I’m glad that Bela is taking up space and whatever, her getting into Catullan is not exactly a win. Yay, you’re heading into the shit zone, where more unfunny men will undoubtedly talk down to you and feel entitled to your body! Hopefully, we’ll see Bela open up about what happened to her and get those stinkers gone. Time’s maybe, almost, kind of up.