Wheels on the Bus
Episode 7 of Nine Perfect Strangers Season 1 begins with Masha reflecting back on the painful memories from her past. With her daughter riding a bike, she’s struck down by a speeding car, sending Masha into a deep spiral of grief. Carmel snaps Masha back to reality though with a stiff punch across the face.
With blood staining her face, Yao jumps in and manages to strap Carmel down. As they rush her out of the area, Frances begins to freak out. Tony senses this and suggests they just get away from the place together. As he begins spouting out prose from her book, Tony suddenly changes to sport long hair and white robes. Yes, all of this is a big vision as the treatment starts to spiral out of control.
Following their run-in with Zack earlier in the season, both Heather and Napoleon entertain the idea of being with him – even if the whole thing is a hallucinatory lie. Napoleon is still torn over the big reveal with Heather though, which – if you may remember – included her lying about the pill bottle and the side effects therein.
Lars trails off from the group and takes Masha aside. It turns out the guest who died was a guy called Aaron Connolly. He died on the premises too, explaining the visions of Masha and Delilah giving CPR to the kid. Masha though chalks it up to a heart attack and nonchalantly brushes aside Lars’s concerns.
However, it turns out Lars is actually on the island to get to the bottom of this and investigate Connolly’s death. His mother is the one who hired him to get involved in this project.
As things start to become unraveled, Masha pushes the Marconi family to “increase the odds” with their encounter with Zack. She promises that they’ll see beyond their wildest dreams, pushing them to up their dosage. This whole plan that she has in mind was successful for only one guest previously. Any guesses who that may be? Yep, it’s Aaron.
Of course, Lars jumps all over this and confronts Masha about why she’s doing this. He knows about her history and believes Masha is crossing a line with the Marconi family to try and use them to somehow see her own daughter again. Essentially the guys and gals in this project are just guinea pigs for Masha.
Delilah has had enough and refuses to see another disaster on the resort. Her attempts to try and get through to Yao fail, and she eventually packs her things and leaves alone. Or at least tries to anyway. The gates are locked and the place is on lockdown. Well, it doesn’t stop her from driving through a fence and leaving anyway, much to Masha’s horror.
With less manpower, Frances wanders off on her own, sitting on the cliff edge and looking out at the water. When Masha catches wind of this, she postpones her plans with the Marconi’s to make sure she’s okay.
Interestingly, it’s this conversation that allows us to learn more about Masha and what drives her. Since the death of her daughter Tatianna she’s been struggling to feel happy and leading an unfulfilling life.
With nothing going to plan, Masha doses the Marconi family and tasks Yao with bringing them to the forest, given that’s where they’ve been seeing Zack the most.
Meanwhile, Masha visits Carmel who’s having second thoughts and wants to leave the facility. Masha tries to convince her otherwise, but as Carmel turns and looks at her, she sports two different coloured eyes. More visions of Masha’s past hint that the gunman who shot her in the parking lot had the exact same condition.
The Episode Review
Nine Perfect Strangers returns this week with everything starting to unravel. With Delilah gone and the hired help running around like headless chickens, there really could not be a worse time to push forward with this risky dosage and Masha’s masterplan.
Learning more about Masha’s past and seeing what really drives her is a great inclusion though and it helps to give a lot more context over what’s going on here. This chapter also sheds more light on this Aaron Connolly issue, explaining why Lars is at the facility too.
While this episode isn’t quite as controlled as the previous chapters, that’s perhaps to be expected as everything spirals out of control for our characters. Either way , the ending hints that we’ve got lots of drama in the upcoming finale.
The sheer number of characters being juggled is something I’ve mentioned before but once again, Ben and Jessica are just non-existent. With the finale up next though, there’s lots left unresolved leaving plenty of room for a dramatic conclusion to this drama.