Conversations With Friends Miniseries Episode 4 Recap

Time for another Sally Rooney special: uprooting our cast from their drab Irish lives and flinging them into unimaginable luxury on a dreamy summer vacation! Frances arrives in Croatia in an outfit that seems designed to make her appear as young as possible – not that adults don’t wear shorts these days, but the whole look, from the ruffled short sleeve shirt to the little beginner hoops on her ears the low pony is sure to be something Kristy would have rocked in the original Babysitter Club books, no? I think I wore a very similar outfit on the first day of second grade. Totally understand what they want, although I’m wondering if it stems from a character POV – wouldn’t Frances probably dress as adult as possible as she’s trying to blend in? Rather than draw attention to the decade separating them from Nick and Melissa?

Along with Bobbi and Frances, Nick and Melissa are home to a beautiful couple who we can recognize from their cameo appearance at Melissa’s birthday party. Aside from the beauty mentioned above, they don’t get any real personalities in this episode, plus they later sing and play the guitar. But most of the time they add very little to the action, other than, I think, to ease the tension between our four cores (and serve as proof that Bobbi isn’t Melissa’s first or only black friend). Nick reports that the shoot in Scotland was abysmal – long hours, no fun – and Melissa will later tell Frances that he was a “wreck” when he arrived and only woke up when “company” arrived. She says this in a way that suggests genuine gratitude and not suspicion… do you think she knows something? Does she know but don’t care? Is she too caught up in what she’s planning to do with Bobbi to see what’s happening right under her nose? Leave your theories in the comments!

During a swim break, Frances and Bobbi catch up on the status of their respective theoretically unavailable crushes. Everyone lies to everyone: Frances acts like Nick doesn’t matter, and Bobbi acts like she’s unconcerned because it’s unlikely she and Melissa will kiss again. Frances and Nick then make meaningful eye contact as they swim past each other in silence (“Conversations” with “Friends”).

The next day Melissa has to work and I’m curious if Frances ever addressed this situation: Melissa wanted to use a line from her poem in an essay. The usage request itself wasn’t entirely clear to me – did she mean to quote it and give Frances credit? Or just use the line as if it were your own? She said she needed an answer within a few days but it was definitely longer and we don’t know what happened there. (I just want you to know that I’m careful.)

So Nick takes Bobbi and Frances for a ride around the island. During a brief sidebar, Bobbi says to Frances, “You know, your whole quiet thing makes everyone think you’re enigmatic and interesting?” This is really disappointing because there’s a real tenderness between them and I in other moments of the episode I’m beginning to feel like Bobbi is actually a good friend. But now she’s back to just offering those judgments and criticisms masquerading as wise observations and cutting insights. I mean, Bobbi Frances doesn’t really think so is Interesting? Then Bobbi says she hates how Frances always “thinks things and doesn’t say them”. I personally think Bobbi could think and not say a little more, but she didn’t ask me!

Even though Nick planned this trip and knew he was going to take the girls to a beach, no one packed a bathing suit, so of course Bobbi strips down to her underwear to swim topless in front of her ex and her crush’s husband. Very European. Frances doesn’t even take off her sneakers. But when she’s left on the shore with Nick, she gets some cute little quips about whether it’s “very embarrassing” that she’s here (her delivery of “extreme” is perfection). Nick confirms that Bobbi doesn’t know he and Frances had sex. He apologizes although he obviously doesn’t really know what he’s apologizing for – his whole vibe is very, See I’m just the grown man in this situation I don’t know what you want from me what, eye rolls — and they joke that Frances has no feelings.

Frances cannot sleep that night. (Classic.) She finds Nick in the kitchen because he in addition can’t sleep because they have so much in common!!! Excuse. Anyway, Nick reveals that he and Melissa sleep in separate rooms, which is information Melissa didn’t share. He doesn’t provide any context for this (couples sleeping apart aren’t in and of themselves a bad sign for a relationship! Some people just like starfish! So many men snore very loudly!), but Frances is obviously delighted.

During a group outing the next day, Frances receives a drunken call from her father. She confides in Nick that her father is an alcoholic, that he gives her money for college, and that she wishes she didn’t need him financially because it “gives him this weird support.” [her].” Nick suggests that paying for school is the “only fatherly thing her dad can do” because “sometimes people just want to feel like they’re needed.” Hmmm. Frances admits she doesn’t even know if she loves her father. I feel like Frances, the older man she’s having an affair with, is terribly sick of spelling out her daddy issues, but maybe I’m being too hard on everyone involved.

That evening, Bobbi comes to Frances’ room to take her on a hike, just the two of them. The nicest thing Bobbi has done in a long time! Frances says yes…but hesitates at the last minute to stay back and “write” (stare at a page and get nothing…been there). She was probably hoping for a time with Nick, but that doesn’t happen. Instead, they cross paths with Melissa, who also works and advises her to leave writing alone when things aren’t going well. When Bobbi returns from the hike around sunset, Frances confesses that she should have been hiking and the writing was unproductive.

A question for you all: I wonder if this kind of meditative show will land now that the world is open? part of the appeal v normal people was that it was a hot show that came at an isolating time. The pacing of the actual story wasn’t that fast, but it had a little forward motion as well conversations with friends — Time jump from high school to university to work. But this show is much quieter, at least so far. In theory, the affair is juicy stuff, but in practice about 80 percent of the episode is just “attractive people quietly going on a seaside vacation that neither of them even have to pay for.”

That night everyone gets drunk and plays Kings, and Bobbi is a brat again and makes up a rule that if you forget to follow another rule, you have to kiss the person on your left, “and don’t forget that on purpose, Nick.” (Guess where Frances is sitting.)

Frances texts Nick. He walks into her room and she has that smile again, like she’s trying to hold back all her laughter. I love that France’s room is this self contained den? For example, if you were trying to structure your group vacation for maximum opportunities for infidelity, you would do exactly the same.

After having sex, Nick and Frances admit that they both thought the other wanted nothing more to do with them, presumably because they said things to each other like “I don’t want anything more to do with you” (in so many words ). I literally laughed out loud at “You don’t always seem so enthusiastic.” Again, they bond over what they describe as their shared awkwardness, and there are genuine displays of affection. Nick slips out in the morning, but not before kissing Frances good morning. Surely these two will move forward in their relationship with the cool confidence of people who have nothing to worry about. Conversations With Friends Miniseries Episode 4 Recap

Lindsay Lowe

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