The Big Party
Episode 2 of Little Birds begins within the ruins of an old building. Lili Von X directs an artistic orchestration of bodies, with Lucy and Hugo watching on. Lili encourages Lucy to do a screen-test and eventually agrees to have her infront of the camera.
As Lili enthusiastically tells her the camera makes love to her passionately, Lucy scoffs, “Well, someone needs to.” Oof!
Finally feeling liberated, Lucy excitedly greets Hugo after her time on camera who’s less than amused by her antics. Despite Lili inviting her to a wrap party at the Mandrox mansion, Hugo defiantly refuses to allow his wife to mix with their group.
Meanwhile, Secretary Vaney heads up to a farm and speaks to a man named Kaboul, a restless soldier desperate to move in swiftly against the Moroccan locals. Given the King is on the way, if they do this it could cause a rebellion. Vaney tells him to trust what he has planned and to wait for his word.
After the antics in the club, Cherifa is told to go on-duty by her madame. After remind her boss that she’s a whore, not a politician, she sighs heavily and gets to work. News of Cherifa’s defiance at the club spreads. It spreads so far infact that Vaney decides to invite Cherifa along to the party up at the mansion too.
Grant phones Hugo and tells him to get to work securing the deal with Secretary Vaney. Realizing he’s on a leash and has little choice, Hugo takes a deep breath and prepares to sell Grant’s gear. Despite heading up to the mansion, he gets nowhere and is turned away.
With the upcoming party on the horizon, Lucy asks for an invitation from the Contessa. Lucy’s more than welcome to attend and learns who else is attending that evening; Secretary Vaney.
Just before Lucy heads home, she has a quick drink at the bar and learns more about Adham. Given he has a tab there, she manages to get his address and track him down. Together, they discuss Hugo’s boring persona and interestingly, she asks him to take her to the party.
Adham accepts but before they go, takes her out shopping. Back at her house, Lucy gets dolled up in a beautiful dress and admires her own beauty. When Hugo arrives home he initially tells her to get changed until he learns who else is attending the party. He soon changes his tune and decides to tag along as well.
Interestingly, Cherifa’s lover Leo is also invited but in a pretty unconventional way. Early in the episode, we see him break into the Contessa’s mansion. Instead of carting him off to jail, he’s instead given a job to work for her. Wisely, he chooses to work.
At the Mansion, the Contessa speaks to the Secretary about the whispers of independence and the nationalists that could rally behind the King when he returns. Vaney reassures her though that under French rule she’ll always be safe.
The party gets underway and Lucy arrives with both Hugo and Adham in this dysfunctional triangle of messy emotions. The Contessa grabs Leo and takes him upstairs… just as Cherifa arrives at the party.
While Leo finds himself at her mercy, Cherifa meanwhile finds herself face to face with Vaney. As they start verbally sparring with one another, Hugo arrives with his big opportunity regarding manpads. Vaney is having none of it though and instead takes his card and gets back to dealing with Cherifa.
Only, their conversation is over for now as she stands up and walks away. As she heads upstairs, she sees Leo and the Contessa together. She screams hysterically, calling him a dog, before hurrying out the door.
As the episode closes out, the Secretary notices Lucy dancing and gets involved. He pulls her aside and invites her to lunch… privately without Hugo around.
The Episode Review
Although the pace slows down slightly, the drama remains intriguing. There’s a lot of simmering tensions here and a healthy dose of angst right the way across the episode for our various characters.
Seeing Adham and Lucy together is an interesting juxtaposition of fate and the visuals remain excellent in this second episode too. Cherifa is easily one of the stand-outs here and the way she stands up to the Secretary is certainly a pretty powerful signal of intent.
With constant murmurs of a rebellion lurking on the horizon, could we soon see this spill over into the main plot-lines? Only time will tell.