Both Yasmin and Harper reunite with people from their past and deal with people who didn’t necessarily want to be found.
|Writer(s)||Mickey Down, Konrad Kay|
|Introduced This Episode|
|Robert Senior||Rick Warden|
This content contains pertinent spoilers.
It All Was Fun Once – Harper, Eric, Danny, Venetia, Robert, Gus, Aurore, Robert Senior, Daphne
With Harper and Danny going strong, despite her reservations, it adds a bit of pep to her step. Hence her volunteering to wrangle Anna for CPS and even having to courage to face Eric to request getting on a Berlin trip to do so. Though unbeknownst to Eric, this trip has more than one purpose for her.
As for those left behind? Gus learns from Aurore that she is getting promoted to the Minister of State for Tech and Health position, and she wants him to join her away from the field office. But, the one who finds staying back in England to not be advantageous is Robert.
Between being told Clement Cowan, Robert’s former boss, left things in his name, being tasked to recruit a graduate student named Daphne with Venetia, and seeing his dad, Robert Senior? Robert is a mess. Now, mind you, he still gets the desired result Danny wanted when he sent him. But with opening up to Venetia and her doing the same, combined with seeing his estranged father, it is all a bit much for Robert, and even Gus isn’t able to talk him down from waking up in the street with vomit on his shirt.
Family Drama – Theresa, Yasmin, JD, Harper
In Berlin, there is very little focus on Yasmin making sure everyone is ready for her to leave FX, and more so the focus is on personal matters. For Yasmin, it is the realization one of her nannies, maybe most if not all, were women her father has paid off or is still paying.
In Berlin, that’s Theresa, who is the reason Yasmin speaks German, and Yasmin learns that not only did her dad pay Theresa off, but also he fathered a child with Theresa. Thus pushing the need to question how much of her life was influenced by those her dad was having an affair with and how many more siblings are out there that she doesn’t know of?
Luckily, in terms of being in the dark, Yasmin hasn’t been alone. Harper finally tracks down her brother John-Daniel aka JD, and it isn’t the reunion she thought they’d have. He is no longer the athlete she grew up with. He is in recovery but seeing her triggers his need to drink and do drugs, and she learns he has a different take on their childhood than she does. In Harper’s mind, it was them vs. their mom, but in JD’s mind, Harper was an extension of their mother and ignored his panic attacks and mental health.
Between them is a lot of back and forth and Harper tries to make amends but it becomes clear JD wants to cut himself away from everything in his past, including Harper. This creates emotions that leave her heartbroken and disconnected and likely pushes her to understand why her mother cared more about results than feelings.
I Am My Mother’s Daughter – Anna, Harper, Yasmin, Jackie, Danny, Eric
Harper is so shell-shocked by what JD says that she forgets her mission to bring Anna to CPS, and that’s even with Anna seeking Harper’s opinion. But, this is good for Yasmin and Jackie as it makes it easier to impress and secure Anna for FX.
But the fun doesn’t end there. Upon Harper’s return to London, she is testy with Danny, who is just trying to be nice, and seeing Eric leave the third floor, where the therapist is, ignites something in her. Her mentor, maybe former mentor at this point, has succumbed to a mental health professional. So, seemingly to double down on how strong she is compared to others, Harper shuts down any faint idea there is something wrong and that she needs to talk about it.
Things To Note
Question(s) Left Unanswered
- Will we get to hear Harper’s mom give her side of things? It was established in season 1 that Harper and her mom do occasionally talk, so there could be the possibility she reveals where JD is to see if her mom cares
- How serious is Danny about Harper?
- Is everything we assumed Yasmin learned from fancy schools and her family’s network actually from her father’s mistresses?
- Is Robert officially off the wagon and back to being a mess? Also, does Venetia have feelings for him she may pursue?
What Could Happen Next
- In reaction to her brother’s rejection, Harper becoming more destructive and risk-taking, if not furthering how she is like her mom
- Robert too becoming reckless and maybe not pursuing being as politically correct anymore and trying to code switch
- Venetia potentially becoming more prominent
- Yasmin becoming Celeste’s plaything while they are alone, especially with them working together – thus her becoming like her father’s mistress
- Danny taking over CPS after Harper does something to piss him off
Could you not try and tell me how I felt? You could have just asked me.
Harper and JD’s Relationship
Emotional memory is perhaps the most complicated. In Harper’s mind, it was her and her brother against their mom, and their trauma bond brought them closer. However, in JD’s mind, Harper was an extension of their mother. She gave in to the push for excellence and co-signed their mother’s emotional abuse. Which, of course, Harper doesn’t see because she saw herself as encouraging, supportive, and all the things their mother wasn’t.
And it is with hearing that, that you’re left to understand how much like her mother Harper is and how that explains most of her relationships. Harper is able to switch off her emotions, her ego, and maybe even her pride for results. As she said, she doesn’t live in the past and appreciates her job mostly forces you to live in the present. Because of that, you don’t have to reflect on your actions too much. Harper can just worry about how she feels at any given moment.
But, as shown through JD, what that also allows is limited accountability. Which, as shown by her back-and-forth relationship with Yasmin, Eric perhaps as well, means Harper doesn’t have to, want to, and probably avoids altogether, recollection of what she did in the past and focuses on the now. Yes, she will be quick to remind someone of her victories, as she uses her selective memory, but that reptilian trait she inherited? It seems her brilliance is her weapon to compensate for that and with people coming back over and over, she can feel validated that nothing she has done is that bad.
However, that is what makes JD’s rejection of Harper major. It’s one of the first significant rebukes Harper she has had from anyone and goes beyond Robert not being able to get an erection or even Eric trying to undermine her to save his job. This feels personal in that Harper didn’t calculate hurting so bad. After all, JD is her twin, an extension of her, and his rejection forces her to realize how many of her relationships are based on accessibility and convenience. He forces her to see herself as others do, and with him being no competition to her, she cannot shoo away the animosity easily. Also, with the narrative being pushed that she is like her mother, it seems to trigger Harper’s need to question if she will end up alone. An idea which it may seem Harper is fine with, but deep down? It probably scares the s*** out of her.
DVD and Harper’s Relationship
Which brings us to her relationship with Danny. I would never say Harper has daddy issues, but at the same time, you can see when it comes to Eric, and Danny, even when Yasmin talks about her dad, there is this sense of longing. Heck, you could even say with JD, that having a stable male figure she can lean on is comforting. Not something she needs to function, but she wants because she deserves it.
So with Danny, it’s going to be interesting to watch how their relationship evolves or devolves because she let him in, and he didn’t reject her. He hasn’t played down his interest or made it seem like he is just using her to get the edge off. There might be something there, and considering Harper was cheated on in the past, she comes with baggage of more than one material.
Now, this isn’t to say Danny doesn’t have his own stuff going on that should be ignored. However, he seems to be in a relatively good place right now. So all the focus is on whether he is playing the long game to get Jesse, or the long game for Harper’s heart? That and whether Harper, with showing herself vulnerable to Danny before, will make him pay for her brother’s rejection?
Robert’s Personal Struggles
While it has been noted Harper didn’t have it easy, in some ways, you can see Robert had it worst for on top of the mother who expected everything and more from him, he didn’t have an escape or outside support. Plus, unlike Harper, there wasn’t that spine that could stand against the wind. Robert is malleable, a pleaser, and I’d submit struggles with knowing his place.
Also, as shown through his dad, he doesn’t take well to resistance. Even with Daphne, despite his power position, Robert lost his cool and unraveled when challenged. Heck, before he snagged Nicole and the pressure was on, he was unraveling and didn’t make calls because, while intelligent, he doesn’t like nor seems to want to take much initiative.
All of this shows that his mother is what gave him drive and goals and got him to get in gear. Without her or another person to put his feet to the fire, he is aimless and struggles to even fake it till he can make it.
Yasmin and The Influence of her Father’s Mistresses
Because we haven’t seen much of Yasmin’s mom this season, or even in the first, and her dad isn’t around much either, it is hard to say what she got from them. However, we’re always told about nannies and other people watching Yasmin and all the languages she knows. With that in mind, and this new information about Charles’ affairs, it pushes you to realize Yasmin was raised by her father’s mistresses.
Take note that Yasmin seems to have been immensely influenced by these women. The sum of every affair her dad had is a significant reason she is as marketable as she is at Pierpoint. A notable piece of her intelligence came from people who disrespected her mom, her parent’s marriage, and in some ways, they cared about her, but not about her family.
And note, as much as Yasmin seems to focus more on the family money than the individuals, most of this season has been about her trying to remember the good times and even strengthening her bond with her dad. Granted, to get him to Pierpoint, but I’d submit that she wants to be able to be her dad’s favorite girl. It is just he makes it so difficult to trust him and be comfortable enough to be vulnerable.
I’d even say, her daddy issues manifest in how she not only treats men but interacts with women. Men are to be dominated, with her holding all the cards, because she has seen how her father has treated women, and she doesn’t want to be seen or behave like them. Yet, when it comes to women, especially with masculine energy, like Harper or even Celeste, you see this submissive side to her. Harper can verbally give Yasmin a tongue lashing each and every time, but it is almost like Yasmin likes it. She wants to be a sub to Harper’s dom and give over her power.
Then with Celeste, because Celeste is inviting, sensual, and also has strong masculine energy, this makes Yasmin feel safe. It’s less about the turn-on of someone standing up to her and putting her in her place and more about the comfort. Celeste is able to tap into her feminine energy enough to put Yasmin at ease, but her nature, which has a certain level of aggression and seduction to it, allows Yasmin to be led in ways she’d never let a man do or think he could do.
Now, I could be off when I say all of this, but I do think it’s hard to ignore how much Charles has tainted men for Yasmin, and while I wouldn’t say she is queer, I do think there are feelings there she gets closer to exploring in each episode.