If you had a time machine, and could travel to anywhere, bound only by your own imagination, which era would you dial up? Would you find yourself in Manhattan, during the Jazz age, ducking and rolling next to Frank while Zelda hurls gin bottles? Would you be munching brioche in the court of Versailles and enjoying the calm before socialism gets invented? Would you zoom off to the future and discover whether you ever find love, or end up living as a lonely robot billionaire having sold your internal organs to the Natural History Museum? Or, with the universe and its infinity at your disposal, would you nip back to, say, mid August 2018, to relive the golden toned, halcyon days of, oooh, about six weeks ago? You would? Oh, marvellous! Step aboard! Welcome to the very recent past and this week's episode of Made In Chelsea. You’re probably too young to remember, but everyone was sad about Brexit and football. Everyone but Louise Thompson and Ryan Libby, who have just got engaged!
They’ve just returned from LA, where Ryan ‘popped the question’ – an idiom of dubious etymology, dating back to 1725, used specifically in relation to marriage from 1826 (at least, according to the very first result that comes up on Google. I’m so lazy that if I was born in 1725 I think I would have died of tiredness half way through putting a corset on.) I’m touched by the fact that Louise’s luggage is beautifully monogrammed with her initials, but Ryan’s washbag just says ‘Ryan’. I’m sure Kanye does the same. Sam is very excited, and wants to celebrate their good news with strawberries, champagne and an engagement party, which will be 20 per cent celebration, 80 per cent advert for Sam as a potential partner. It would be awful if Habbs were washing her hair that night…
Miles is supposed to be interning for Proudlock, but he’s gone to Diver’s Cove to chuck himself at large bodies of water and listen to Digby whine about Liv. ‘I thought I was working from home,’ he lies, when Proudlock checks up on him. Dude, which interns work from home? You can tell that Miles is fairly entitled and removed from the pain of domestic drudgery, because he doesn’t reach for the ready made lie, floating in the ether – the one about waiting for a plumber. He’s just moved! It would be so easy for him to be out of the office awaiting the delivery of an imaginary washing machine. Although I’m not sure that I trust Habbs or Emily to give Miles a convincing alibi.
Liv has lunch with our fave, Katie, and dad Keven. Has that always been spelled with two ‘e’s? Did he have to give his daughter his ‘I’, otherwise she’d have to go around living life as a ‘Lv’? Maybe the ‘K’ was a mistake on the birth certificate and his parents meant to name him ‘Seven’! Keven is cautiously pleased about Liv’s rugby romance. ‘And…this new man…has…a job?’ Boy! Tell Lord Bentley of your prospects! We also discover that Keven doesn’t hate Digby for making Liv sad – he hates him for spending too much time in the gym.
Sophie, Virgin Fair, Star Of the C Plot, is making classist judgements about East London graffiti before forcing Miles to strip off and get sketched in the nude. In a way, Sophie’s visible distaste for the smell of stale urine is far less offensive than Miles’ determination to use someone else’s subculture for his art boy Insta poses. Miles is less edgy than an artisanal marshmallow, and he’s no match for Sophie’s will. ‘This is the first time I’ll be naked in front of you, and it’s not how I imagined it,’ he beams. Now we’re all forced to imagine Miles imagining nude scenarios. I’ve had to watch a Youtube clip of Child’s Play 3 just to mitigate the horror. I hope he gets a papercut on his taint.
On a mission to exorcise the ghosts of bad boyfriends past, Liv organises a double date with Habbs and Harrison. ‘He’s not like the rest of the Chelsea lot,’ says Liv, cheerily. ‘IS HE FROM CHELSEA?’ asks a panicked Habbs, clearly worried about the prospect of spending the evening with someone who works for a living and knows how to pronounce all vowel sounds. It’s OK, he’s called Tristan. Phew! Maybe it’s delight, maybe it’s relief, but Habbs’ facial expression defines smug. Well done Liv! Elsewhere, Louise’s Mum Karen could win a mime competition with her genre defining look of ‘contempt’ when she finds out that Sam is throwing the engagement party. She’s also very uncomfortable with the pronunciation of LA, or ‘Ell-eh’, which is very Maggie Smith plays Lady Bracknell.
While Ryan celebrates his engagement, Digby bemoans his lost love, before pointing out that Emily looks ‘GREAT in a bikini! REALLY good!’ ‘Don’t ask Emily out,’ advises Ryan. ‘I’m going to ask Emily out,’ says Digby. Why is Digby still here? In the show? If we want to watch people make a series of poor decisions while causing hurt, pain and exasperation, we can go elsewhere and read news stories about Brexit. Habbs’ date with Tristan goes so well that she looks happy and glowy enough to make bowling shoes seem desirable. Digby bumps into Emily while he is running, and she runs in the other direction, because she ‘literally’ has to buy an outfit. For once, it doesn’t seem like a misuse of language. She literally has to do whatever she can to get away from Digby before he cracks onto her. Biscuits takes Louise for lunch and reminisces about past love. ‘You should never settle for anything that makes you content. You should be happy all the time,’ says Louise. Perhaps I’m old and cynical but this doesn’t make me wildly confident for her marriage. Biscuits has brought her a very extravagant engagement present. Jars of sweets. From his sweet company. For free.
Skipping speedily past Sophie’s C plot, Miles’ pitch to Proudlock, the expression ‘urban bop’ and the thousand tiny deaths that our soul had to experience in order to be purified and born again, it’s party time! Habbs has been persuaded to attend, against her better judgement – a bit by Mytton and a lot, we suspect, by the producers. Liv has got wind of Digby’s fondness for Emily, and deals with it with restraint. ‘You have tarnished any happy memories I have, I hate you. You’re the most disrespectful little prick I’ve ever met,’ she cries, mic-dropping her necklace at him – which is all the encouragement Digby needs to ask Emily for a ‘harmless’ drink. Single people! Nothing makes you sound quite so sinister as using the word ‘harmless’ when you invite people to spend time with you! ‘I don’t think it’s a good idea,’ says Emily. Why can’t Digby go out and have some fun. ‘You can, just not with me.’ I wasn’t sure about Emily, but now I am very much back in her camp. Which reminds me – isn’t it nice to have an episode without Harry Baron?! So relaxing!
Binky is the surprise guest of honour. Louise asks her to be a bridesmaid, which is adorable – but she also reveals that she fancies a hen do in a Swiss clinic with ‘what are they? Not UV drips…’ Binky will not stand for it. Sam gives a barnstorming speech, which is technically about Louise and Ryan, but performed for Habbs’ benefit. Will she succumb? Nope, she’s going to have dinner with Tristan. Stay strong, Habbs. Words are all well and good, but notorious shaggers have form in the speech department. Look at Lord Byron. Who is not someone I ever, ever thought I woud be comparing Sam Thompson to.
Hero of the week
I am feeling very pro Emily after her polite, sensible reaction to Digby’s nonsense, and the way that she seems to be one of the first people in MIC’s seven year history to display some genuine loyalty. Go Emily!
Villain of the week
It’s been a relatively non-evil period in Fulham and its environs. Maybe Miles for the pervy remarks and cultural appropriation? Or Digby, for the sleaziest date invite ever? (Offering alcohol to a woman you want to sleep with and saying ‘My treat’ is a hop, skip and a jump away from ‘Do you want to see what’s in my pants, little lady?’ Bleurghhh.