The talking cure may be failing Otis and Jean as they sort out their issues. A wary Maeve makes the finals. Sexy Shakespeare never goes out of style.
The episode begins with Lily and Ola trying to take their new relationship to the next level — only for them to discover that Lily’s vaginismus condition is still a factor. After Ola asks a couple of questions, specifically about whether Lily can still pleasure herself, the two of them find a compromise: a mutual masturbation session that ends in a high five.
Meanwhile, Otis and Jean are back to fighting over Jean’s discovery of the sex clinic, which she makes very clear to Otis is simply not okay on ethical levels — something Otis disagrees with. But the argument becomes about more than the sex clinic, as Jean confronts the harsh reality of being a single parent to a teenage boy: “I always get your worst and I’m tired of it.” Otis points out that it’s not his fault that Remi left, and also encourages her to come to the school play that night; even though Headmaster Groff has kicked her off campus, Otis thinks that she shouldn’t let them bully her.
Maeve grows suspicious that her mother is using again, which is a major issue given that at the age of 3, her half-sister Elsie is not quite able to start raising herself. As a member of the swing band, Eric’s a part of Romeo and Juliet: The Musical. He asks Rahim to come see it — and learns that his boyfriend hates musicals. Eric also tells Adam about the musical, and the two of them share a laugh, which Rahim sees.
At the quiz championships, it’s a tough match, but by working as a team, they triumph! Maeve is a bit off her game, because Joe and Isaac snoop through her caravan and find proof that Erin is definitely using again — and right beforehand, Maeve makes the incredibly tough decision to report her mother to the authorities as unfit. Erin does show up for the competition, after previously saying she wouldn’t be able to, but that doesn’t change the fact that Erin slipped. As Erin and Elsie are taken away, for their own ostensible good, Erin tells Maeve that she’ll never forgive her, which is devastating.
Jean’s worried that her exhaustion and other physical symptoms might be actually a sign of her being perimenopausal, something her doctor initially dismisses but agrees to run tests. Turns out those tests reveal that Jean was right about being perimenopausal, but Jakob was wrong about his vasectomy being effective — because she is also pregnant.
The school administrator has popped by after hearing that Groff sent Jean away, because unlike Groff she believed that Jean was actually going to be able to help the students.
Finally, it’s showtime. Jackson gets off to a bad start, initially freezing after making his first entrance, but thanks to some eye contact with Viv in the audience, works through the moment and the play goes forward. Lily is running a great production and this is all amazing, but Groff doesn’t agree, running backstage to try to shut down the show.
What really derails things is Adam running onto the stage, specifically to declare his love for Eric — which Eric reciprocates, even though Rahim is right there. Later, “You have all been corrupted by [Jean],” Groff shouts at the crowd, before Otis interjects, taking responsibility for his own bad advice, telling the audience that Jean is a great therapist, and perhaps most importantly pointing out that the school should have been providing these services the whole time.
The administrator pulls Groff out of the theater and puts him on leave, while the show peters to an end.
Otis doesn’t know about Jean’s news, but he does tell her that if she wants to be with Jakob, he’ll support them. Jackson and Viv make up and reaffirm their friendship. Aimee and Steve hug. And Isaac tells Maeve that she did the right thing in reporting her mother to social services, though Isaac’s moral authority is pretty questionable: When Otis comes by to see Maeve that night, Isaac tells him she’s gone, and Otis asks Isaac to tell Maeve to check her messages. Isaac agrees, but when Otis leaves, Isaac listens to the message, in which Otis confesses his love to Maeve. Isaac deletes the message from her phone.
- Asa Butterfield as Otis Milburn
- Gillian Anderson as Dr. Jean F. Milburn
- Ncuti Gatwa as Eric Effiong
- Emma Mackey as Maeve Wiley
- Connor Swindells as Adam Groff
- Kedar Williams-Stirling as Jackson Marchetti
- Aimee Lou Wood as Aimee Gibbs
- Chaneil Kular as Anwar
- Alistair Petrie as Mr. Groff
- Tanya Reynolds as Lily Iglehart
- Patricia Allison as Ola Nyman
- Mikael Persbrandt as Jakob Nyman
- Anne-Marie Duff as Erin Wiley
- Stephen Fry as NSQC Quizmaster
- Sarah Malin as Social Worker
- Myriam Acharki as GP (General Practitioner)
- Jonny Muir as Mercutio
- Dee Ahluwalia as Benvolio