Forgive me for reminding you of this song, Mother-in-Law (click to hear). But it popped into my head while Gail was pleading with Nick to take her in. She was homeless, she said. She was his mother, she said. Throughout her speech, she never once looked at Leanne, Nick’s wife, standing right beside him. Leanne, however, was looking at her and looking daggers at Nick when he caved in.
Then came my pick for best scene of the week, more accurately I guess, sound. The scene we can only imagine since it took place off-screen. When Nick told Gail she could move in, Leanne looked at Nick in horror then flung herself through the door to the kitchen. The sound of crashing glass and crockery followed. I don’t think it was just dishes and glasses falling, I think they were being thrown across the room.
I don’t blame her. Gail has not even been civil to her before or since Leanne and Nick’s wedding. They are still newlyweds, adjusting to living together and making a family life with Simon. Their relationship was far from easy before the wedding(s) and they need time to sort themselves out. We’ve never seen Nick’s flat so we don’t know how large it is. But he rented it for himself only so I doubt it’s more than adequate for the three already in it. And then the mother-in-law expects to move in. Not because she truly has nowhere else to go, only because she is angry at her other son and his wife.
Gail has reason to be angry. David and Kylie are acting abominably to her. Whether or not they buy the house, it has been Gail’s house for all of David’s life. Adjustments in living arrangements need time and discussion by all three adults. But there’s the rub: David and Kylie are not adults. Despite lurches into apparent maturity, they still are just playing at adulthood.
That was underscored in Friday’s episode when Gail lets them know that if she is being treated as a lodger, she will act like one. No, she’s no longer taking Max to school, no, she won’t iron David and Kylie’s shirts but she will leave her ironing board up and let them use her iron until they buy their own. Kylie and David both are astounded and furious. After all she’s always done all the work – she’s mum and grandmum. No, she says, you say I’m a lodger.
She is taking the fight to them, something she should have done at the beginning instead of running to Nick, crying to him to bail her out.
At least events of the week have answered the question of how many bedrooms there are upstairs. But two and a “box room” still doesn’t really explain how Gail has had so many of her children and their lovers and children living there all at the same time.