Sophy says: I love these two. I fucking love, love, love them. And if they’d been developed properly beyond this episode, I’m sure I’d be rambling about how brilliantly Effy smoking and wearing black represents her downward spiral whereas Panda’s bright colours and nourishment represent life and hope, and in the end Effy falls away and Panda has to make it on her own, grow up and get out of her mother’s well-meaning but stifling OCD clutches, be her own person and save Effy’s soul with scrapey-shakey… but noooo. Thanks to the abandonment and neglect Pandora and Pandora/Effy suffered after this episode, I just sound like a raving lunatic when I try to have insight. Boo, you whore Skins team.
Rin says: I can’t believe you didn’t talk about benches. But yes, Panda/Effy definitely deserved better treatment than what they got… they were carried over from gen 1 for fucks sake. That’s got to count for something.
Sophy says: Oh, my apologies.
Sophy says: Absolutely beautiful. This entire opening sequence is just magic, from Effy and Pandora sleeping in the same bed, opposite ways up like kids at a sleepover – because you know that that’s what Pandora is on the surface and that deep down that’s what Effy wishes she could still be – to the soft, sweet song that is basically the aural equivalent of nostalgia and morning light, to Lisa Backwell’s wonderfully real, in-the-moment portrayal of a girl in love for the first time, pining quietly before the rest of the world wakes…
Rin says: I bet if Effy was sharing a bed with Naomi, she wouldn’t suggest sleeping feet-to-head. In fact, she probably wouldn’t be suggesting sleep at all.
Sophy says: idk, I think Effy might be keen on the whole 69 thing.
Sophy says: Except Best Mom Ever is already up and watching her daughter and a half somewhat creepily. It’s okay though, she’s just here to have a really sweet moment with Panda Pops and give us some insight into her latest spate of poor decision making along the way.
Rin says: Lisa rocks this scene so hard. And shows that she really can carry an episode just fine, making it even more criminal that she was robbed of an episode in series 4.
Sophy says: “Yeah… must be love.” As much as I am often in bewildered awe at Anthea’s lack of parenting skills, Morwenna is truly wonderful in the role. I loved her wistfulness in this scene, the way everything in her voice and face is telling us that she knows what she’s doing is wrong, but that, as she will verbalize at the end of the episode when everything has gone to shit, she just wants to feel beautiful, one last time.
Rin says: This is one of my favourite Panda moments in the episode. Love’s only 4 letters.
Sophy says: I find it interesting that Anthea refers to Effy as sleeping beauty in this scene. I’m not quite sure what to make of it, but I find it hard to believe it wasn’t intentional on the writer’s part, given that it harks back to Effy’s s2 episode, in which Effy referred to a drugged up, fixed up Anthea as “our sleeping beauty.” It does make me think of the beautiful bomb, ticking silently away, and the explosion that will come in 405 just when we’ve all been lulled into a false sense of boring. I know that I was thinking throughout series three how much less dark, how much more relateable Effy seemed this gen and how, to be honest, she seemed less interesting because of it. Then, once I was ready to write her off and focus on the other characters… truth, boom. We see the real Effy, finally, and it’s a hell of a compelling mess. Until JB ruins it in 407, lol, Lamie.
Rin says: This is where I get to turn some people against Sophy. Or make them like her even more.. idk idk. But that cap of Panda reminds me so much of Ellen Page, and Panduno was the natural progression. Sophy hates Juno. I loved it. I have that burger phone (it was given to me though…but not because I’m some huge outward Juno fan…)
Sophy says: JESUS CHRIST I HATED JUNO. I CAN’T EVEN. CHRIST. I CAN’T EVEN EXPRESS HOW BAD I THINK IT WAS.
And I was so sure I’d like it that I bought the fucking thing on DVD before watching. Never. Again. No matter how many Jason Batemans are in it.
AND ANOTHER THING JUNO. The diner in Summer Bay had a hamburger phone way before you. Stick that in your stupid fucking oh-so-quirky pipe and smoke it.
Sophy says: Panda jumping on the bed squealing to wake Effy up is just… so… Panda. I think it’s made all the more hilarious and brilliant by the fact that a second ago she was having this srs bsns moment of reflection and then… bounce!
Rin says: Ahaha, this is totally how I wake people up.
Rin says: I would calmly get up to leave too.
Sophy says: Poor Effy. Naomi is so cold
Sophy says: OH HARRY ENFIELD/MR STONEM. I’ll miss you. Even the way you eat your toast is awesome.
Rin says: You know, it would have been nice to see more evidence that they had a son as well. You know.. a picture around the house maybe? A casual mention? GAWD.
Sophy says: I adore the way that Pandora is rabbiting on here and when she asks Effy what order they did things in, boys or chips, Effy simply responds with “Chips”. The contrast of constant prattling and selective mutism is one of the things that makes their friendship interesting.
Rin says: Ffffff. Their eyes are so similar.
Sophy says: Rofl. I love Mr S’s fascination with the oddity that is Pandora Moon. And I love how earnestly Pandora explains to him that you cannot tell her mother the truth. It’s times like these I feel sad that Pandora and her relationship with her mother was never explored beyond this episode, because a situation like hers is something I’ve been wanting to see treated intelligently on a tv show for a very, very long time. Alas.
Rin says: What, Gilmore Girls wasn’t good enough for you?
Sophy says: a) No, Gilmore Girls was not good enough for me on any level. b) I mean a loving yet smothering mother/daughter relationship not a free-spirit, stuff yer grandma, let’s open an inn mother/daughter relationship.
Sophy says: The exchange between Effy and her mum is perfectly played. It could have been ridiculous that Mr S doesn’t notice anything, but Morwenna and Kaya played the intensity with such subtelty that I absolutely buy it. The delivery of “Stop it.” “You stop it.” was spine-tingling. As much as I’ll miss Mr S, if I had to sacrifice one Stonem parent it would be him, because Morwenna and Kaya in a scene together? Pure gold.
Rin says: Well he was sacrificed in series 4.. Let’s pretend he rented out an apartment with Tony and they did the whole scary father-son bachelor thing.
Sophy says: YES! And Tony picks up women for him and they wind up sorely disappointed. Classic.
Sophy says: Oh hai there funny beard. You dumb lovesick jerk.
Rin says: It’s beard fah-say!
Sophy says: This is vintage Skins. A serious event that is played for laughs without cheapening the agony of it in the slightest. Mr S’s excitement at having a friend, his inability to even dream that his wife is cheating on him, to the point where his colleague being gay and torturously in love with him is more plausible… it’s hilarious… and also like watching somebody kicking a puppy repeatedly in the stomach.
Rin says: Did they really have to put him in that tshirt for this scene? Seriously. lol.
Sophy says: The way he just walked in and kissed her and the kiss just went on and on while her husband watched and the more she didn’t struggle the more he knew… heartbreaking.
Rin says: So we got some info that this guy is actually Morwenna’s real life husband, which is kind of cute. Not so much for Mr. Stonem. :S
Sophy says: This is a thread being tugged loose. This is the tight knot that is Effy Stonem beginning to unravel. And Pandora knows. She may not know how to deal with it, but she does know, more than anyone other than her absent brother would, the things Effy is feeling right now.
Rin says: All 3 of their expressions. Perfect.
Sophy says: Kaya in this scene is just phenomenal. The way she looks briefly, with a kind of muted pleading, at Pandora. The way she flinches at the suitcase being dropped. The way she turns to her father, catches his eye and just barely shakes her head, as if to say “No… please… don’t go.” or perhaps, too, “I’m sorry… I tried to make it stop.”
It’s one of those times I’d love to know who should get the biggest piece of the credit pie – did the writer work these details into the script? Did the director do some serious fine-tuning? Or did Kaya come up with this stuff on her own? Either way, major kudos to Skins as a whole and to Kaya as an actress. I felt this scene right down to my bones.
Rin says: Yeah, the flinch at the suitcase dropping to the ground is my favourite moment. Rewatching this episode made me realise just HOW GOOD Kaya is. I think this is one of her best episodes, performance wise.
Sophy says: Oh Harry Enfield. I know you’re mostly just here for the lols, but you were outstanding in this scene. The way you started with the comical-brutal “Bitch! Bitch! Bitch!” and crumpled down to this final moment, and the words “I love you. Please don’t leave me. Don’t…” That line is glorious in its triple effect. On one level he is mocking Anthea and her attempts to “explain”. But the tone of his voice lends another meaning: from a small, buried place, deep in his heart, he is saying those words to her, and he means “Please make this not true. Please don’t leave me by having fucked my friend behind my back all this time.” And then, finally, When we see Effy’s face… he’s giving a voice to the things she works so hard to silence – her own emotions, her own insecurities, her own fear at losing something that, for better or worse, has been a constant in her life.
Pandora reaches out…
Sophy says: … Effy runs.
Rin says: I love the moments when we get reminded that Effy is still so so young. That they’re all just kids.
Rin says: This is what happens when you go to Harvard. I’M SURE OF IT. I’m also surprised it’s taken me this long to sneak Oprah into our recaps.
Sophy says: They’re all just kids… except Thomas. He’s a white, female champion runner amongst other things.
Rin says: That episode of 30 Rock is still one of my favourites. I mean. Oprah.
Sophy says: THOMAS THAT’S NOT REALLY OPRAH! YOU’VE LEMONED YOUR LIFE!
Sophy says: This shot is amazing.
Rin says: The water, the dainty little town. GUHHHH. DESIGNERS PANTS AROUND ANKLES.
Sophy says: This second shot is even more amazing. Even Pandora’s open stance as opposed to Effy’s feet pressed tightly together… wonderful.
Rin says: Sorry but.. I just keep seeing..
Sophy says: I can’t really express how much I love this scene. The way that Pandora, though concerned for Effy, is unable to put aside her obsession with her party, because it’s just that important to her, and because okay, maybe she’s inviting some girls from college, but they’re not her friends, Effy is her friend, her only friend, and if she’s not at the party it’ll be even more disasterous than that time she wasn’t in the philosophy class Pandora so desperately wanted to join.
Rin says: YES PANDORA, THEY WERE MAKING MONKEY. /eyeroll. If you hadn’t been busy puking/blacking out last episode you would know that.
Sophy says: Effy asks Pandora why they’re friends, and Pandora gives a comical answer, an answer that is too glib to be entirely true, an answer that is designed to make things simple again. Pandora wants to make everything okay for Effy, and the best way she knows how is to be silly.
Sophy says: It works, sort of. And for now, Effy forgets about getting trashed, and suggests they get hot chocolates instead. It’s a beautiful moment, and I’m filled to the brim again with resentment at the lack of attention this friendship got from here up to the gen finale.
Rin says: This shared smile. Love.
Sophy says: Here comes Katikins with her skeevy boyfriend! As much as I love Katie now, I remember rolling my eyes a smidge at the ‘my new best friend, Effy’. People in the real world aren’t that ridiculous. They just aren’t. Ridiculousness works for Pandora, but not for Katie, and she only really came into her own when they allowed her to be more than a punchline.
Rin says: I do wonder why Katie didn’t already have her own group of her friends, if she’s so ~out there. Or is that what happens when you go to college? Idk. I do appreciate that she pursues Effy though. I mean that in a totally platonic way too.
Sophy says: Can I just take a moment to say how much I love, love, love the row of pastel houses behind Effy and Panda. They look like they’re made out of wrapping paper. Love.
Rin says: I’m going to buy you rolls and rolls of pastel wrapping paper and see if that makes you love me more.
Sophy says: Oh Katie. Look at your little face. I just want to pinch your little cheeks! Which is what makes your boyfriend all the more skeevy.
Rin says: She’s so adorable. And yeah. The age difference is almost creepier than ours, Sophy.
Sophy says: Idk, people seem to think ours is pretty creepy. Perhaps we should put it to a vote.
Sophy says: lol Pandora shimmies, Katie and Skeev are unimpressed. Maybe if she’d said ‘Girls girls girls!’ instead of ‘And I’m Pandora’. I know Effy would’ve given her a gold star. Or possibly slipped her an emetic in an attempt get her out of the race.
Rin says: Someone’s been getting lessonnnnssssss!
Sophy says: Ngl, whether I like it or not, Meg does do a brilliant job with the vapid enthusiasm.
Rin says: Don’t be a hater, embrace.
Sophy says: See this is a typical example of where Pandora works for me and JJ doesn’t. And most of it is down to Lisa’s delivery. The monkey/ape/bananas/gibbon ramble is something that could almost be written for JJ too. It’s ridiculous and OTT and when JJ has lines like these it feels false to me – when I’m watching JJ talk I can see the writer writing his lines and patting himself on the back about how hilarious it is, I can see Ollie practicising the speech between takes and trying to get that shocked and bewildered expression just so… basically I can see the edges, where fiction isn’t quite fitting into reality. And that’s what makes me cringe rather than laugh. But Lisa? I always buy what Lisa’s selling.
I remember being obsessed with the great dancer Natalia Makarova when I was a kid and watching interviews with her in which she would say “Even ven I leave ze stage, for many minutes I am ze svan.” Lisa is like that. She is Pandora on that screen. Not an actress playing Pandora for laughs.
Having said that, I don’t mean to be too harsh on Ollie. Characters like Pandora and JJ are very, very difficult to play with absolute conviction. I guess it’s not his fault that Lisa is so exceptional that she shows him up. Nor is it his fault that they gave him the babies-and-ukuleles plot. Godspeed Ollie. I wish you well (and better writing).
Rin says: Disclaimer 2: We’re not sorry?
Sophy says: Those two caps – the closeup of Effy in the previous set and the one of Katie here… I see the seeds of scrapey love. No seriously, looking back, the friendship they ultimately developed makes sense, rock incident or no rock incident. Despite my issues with some of the cliches they dressed s3 Katie up in, rewatching this episode has made me appreciate her more. Because okay, so she made the stupid decision to spike the brownies… but she cares. She loves. It’s subtle, but it’s very much there in this episode and is a big part of what will make her so wonderful in series 4. She’s a protector at heart. And that makes me wonder what might have happened if the writers had treated her relationship with Freddie as more than just a silliness to push their rock-plot along.
Rin says: Yes see. Katie wasn’t a total raging bitch in series 3, don’t write her off completely just yet. There are so many scenes where you see the awesomeness of series 4 Katie, and that’s why her development was so believable. It was happening all along.. just inch by inch. She is sincerely concerned, bitch.
Sophy says: Her face is pretty in that first cap. Her body is pretty in the second. It’s a dance thing, I appreciate lines.
Rin says: I learnt about lines from So You Think You Can Dance.
Sophy says: And I have never watched an episode of So You Think You Can Dance. Huh.
Rin says: ‘Obsessed with winning’ …that sounds like someone I know.
Sophy says: Um… you???
Sophy says: I know right, Pandora. I am not liking the pedo-vibe either. Even the fact that little pinch-her-cheeks Meg is kissing the actor upsets me a bit. Especially since she has issues with not using tongue KEEP IT IN YOUR MOUTH, MEG, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD
Rin says: Oh Meg. She didn’t know! Noone told her!!!!!
Sophy says: SCRAPEY-SHAKEY TRIO! Thank you for capturing that moment, Rin. I shall treasure the image always.
Oh Pandora you are so ridiculous and adorable and for some reason I can’t quite put my finger on this business with mum putting up the signal makes my heart break.
Rin says: Of course I included the scrapey trio Sophy, I was over the …. MOOOOON. GEDDIT, GEDDIT?!?!?!?!!
Sophy says: Oh Rin. NOT IN MY BACKYARD UTENSILS.
Rin says: Katie is intrigued!!!
Sophy says: Oh Katie is more than intrigued…
Sophy says: Katie is all ‘Why is Gaynomi invited???! Panda says it was a condition of Emily’s attendance. Katie is perplexed and displeased. Effy rips on Katie with a sarcastic comment about how sweet it is. We all know she means it though. They should have just made Effy a teeshirt that said ‘I’m A Naomily Shipper And Proud Of It!’ And it would have a lobster and a piece of cheese on it and she would wear it always.
Rin says: Oh my god, I WANT THAT. Except I’d only want the lobster and cheese part, I wouldn’t wear it otherwise. Just maybe hang it in my locker shrine.
Sophy says: Pandora walks in and bellows “Muuuuuuum!” It’s awesome, because Lisa Backwell is awesome and makes it real. Panda is like a little kid who’s downed a bottle of red creaming soda in the early parts of this episode. It’s beautiful.
Enter Panda’s mother, who is hilarious and tragic and horrifying all at the same time. The actress is fabulous, one of the most entertaining Skins guest-parents of all. My bf assures me the actress is equally fabulous in a show called
‘Drop The Dead Donkey’ Smack The Pony (my mistake – idk, I guess I saw JJ’s face and all I could think of were asses) in which she played a shy police officer who likes her get her face painted. I must see this.
Rin says: The signs around the house, I don’t even know. THE MUM IS AWESOME.
Rin says: CALMING EXERCISES?! I MIGHT ON OCCASION NEED THESE.
Sophy says: Possibly when we get confirmation that Naomily are going to be holidaying adorably in Goa in the movie???? *prays*
Sophy says: The flour on her nose. Amaze.
Also I love the part where she asks who Katie is and turns quickly to Pandora saying “Katie… I haven’t heard about her.” It’s a moment of anxiety in which we realize how serious this situation with Panda’s home life is, and then… brilliantly undercut by “She’s a new friend, Stupid!” Ffffffffffffffff. I die of lols.
And then. “And I’ve got more! HEAPS MORE! Two more…” dfkjfkdjg.
Rin says: She needs a face apron. Wait.. I’d probably have one of those SARS masks handy, wouldn’t I?
Sophy says: HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH.
Sophy says: Effy’s missionary speech ftw.
Sophy says: Having a cute-off are we, Katie Fitch and Mrs Panda? Idk, Mrs P, maybe if you weren’t so creepy…
Rin says: Fffff how bout some calming exercises Mrs Panda? This is your daughters party, not yours.
Sophy says: Random observation: Katie reminds me of Emily here. Having watched the show for a while their differences have become pretty obvious, but occasionally I do think that maybe, if I wasn’t aware of the context of the scene, I might mistake one for the other.
Rin says: I can see a bit of Ems… it’s like how people get Tegan and Sara confused and I get really annoyed because THEY DON’T EVEN LOOK THE SAME, but occasionally they do look a little like each other. Rant rant. PANDA WITH BROWNIE MIX ON HER FACE. *shakes head*
Sophy says: Effy’s giving Katie a death stare. This is usually closely followed by a Come Hither glance…
Rin says: ‘Come hither’ … DR. CAMERON IN THE BLUE HAZARD SUIT CALLING PIGEONS.
Sophy says: Crrooo crrrooo! See you at home. Omg.
Sophy says: … THERE IT IS. Oh Effy, so predictable.
Rin says: lol. Look at those funny power sockets in the background. Foreigners.
Sophy says: Please explain?
Sophy says: In the context of who Katie is generally, and the fact that she’s possibly the least into drugs and chaos of the whole group… I find this action bizarre. The only way I can explain it to myself is to assume that she’s only doing it beacuse she wants to impress Effy and get into her pants get her to be her BFF. Which makes sense, actually, since that does seem to be her raison d’être in these early episodes.
Rin says: That’d be kind of ironic. Considering her reaction to Effy and her ‘shrooms in 308. Be careful of what you wish for Katie! OR YOU’LL GET A ROCK TO YOUR HEAD LOLS!
Sophy says: Oh GOD. DEAR GOD. The canon singing was funny enough, but then Mrs Panda had to turn around and launch into ‘Making brownies! Really yummyyyy!’ I may never recover from the hilarity.
Also, this is the most omfg-inducing foreshadowing of the scrapey-shakey moment in the finale. Too bad Keffy took the opportunity to ruin Pandora’s party. I’ll just ignore that part.
Aaaaaand, here comes the NAOMTRENCE.
Rin says: Ahaha this is one of my favourite Naomtrences..es.ses. The timing is so lol, poor too-cool-for-school Naomi arriving just as the singing ensues.
Sophy says: lol that last cap is the greatest. Naomi’s expression and the scissors… magic.
Rin says: Once again we have to touch on, ‘then why did you even agree to come if you think it’s so lame, NAOMI?’ Well, it’s because when Panda was inviting you over the phone you asked who else was coming, to which Panda said, “Effy, Katie and Emily.” Yep, Emily Fitch.
Sophy says: OMFGGGGGGGGLKSFJDLFKJLSDKJF it’s Tom from Four Weddings and a Funeral. With topiary! I could die from the awesome. “Thunderbolt city” omg omg omg. And he’s as brilliant in his guest spot as ever. Love.
“Nothing. Young lady. I have nothing to say to you at all.”
Sophy says: HAHAHAHAHAAH OH CHRIST. HER LITTLE HOOD. AND HER BINOCULARS. AND HER NOTES. Oh Sophia, never change.
Rin says: I feel bad that Sophia had to die…she would have had a ball on a safari in Africa.
Sophy says: Or… y’know… Goa…
Sophy says: I love how Naomi is all “Christ, not her, ugh” and then she smiles to herself and turns around with the most ‘I dare you to love me’ expression on her face.
Rin says: Her name is Lily afterall.
Sophy says: Omg. Every time she introduces herself she’s daring people to love her. And they are always up for the challenge ♥
Rin says: Naomily are the mini pipecleaner (piper/lena) as well… red and blonde hair!!
Rin says: STOP STARING AT HER CHEST IF YOU WANT TO BE SO STRAIGHT. Far out.
Sophy says: It’s a bit ridiculous.
Rin says: “I brought vodka, is that right?” ADORABLE. And then, “I don’t wear pyjamas.” Oh ems. Neither does Naomi.
Sophy says: OH EMILY YOU MINX. She totally did that on purpose. And now all Naomi can think of is Emily. Naked. In her bed.
Sophy says: Oh Emily, Emily, Emily. You are the greatest. I love that she just flat out admits she asked Pandora to invite Naomi, when she could have just shrugged and headed inside.
Rin says: She’s a brave one.
Rin says: I just noticed that Naomi’s vest is matching Emily. JFC..
Sophy says: Colour coordination means true love. I learned this from Chuck and Blair.
Sophy says: Emily’s face is amazing here. Put your hand over the beauty-spot-less side of her face and look at the cap. She looks sad, a little hurt, even. Now put your hand on the beauty-spot-having side of her face. Voila. A knowing little smile. Oh Kat, you little Mona Lisa you.
Rin says: NAOMI WOULD PAINT EMILY. (omg so coin laundry) Did I just make some people squee?
Sophy says: Rin, you suck up. And I am this close to breaking my dnw extreme AU rule and reading that.
Rin says: Everytime I watch this scene I just go, ‘WTF LIGHTING CHANGE LIKE WHOA.’
Sophy says: Ffffffffffffffffffffff. I love how once Naomi has made it nice and clear that she’s STRAIGHT STRAIGHT STRAIGHT NO REALLY I’M STRAIGHT, it’s as though she can relax and be herself and enjoy being around Emily. Ironically? “Me cockcruncher” leads them straight to flirting like crazy. And Emily is pretty much in heaven.
Rin says: They’re so fucking cute. I can’t even. SALT ME SOPHY. SALT ME NOW!!!!!!!!!! When they’re allowed to just BE together, you can immediately see why they work. They clickety click. It’s as simple as that….or not. BUT YOU GET WHAT I MEAN.
Rin says: There is NOONE in the world who deserves it more than you Emily Fitch.
Sophy says: NO ONE. In fact I feel as though in a fair world her trophy would be bigger. But she’s so cute and mall she might have trouble carrying it.
Sophy says: Seriously, one of the greatest comic exchanges on Skins, over the page.
Rin says: ffffff I agree. *hurriedly clicks Page 2*