1.8: The Track
It was only a matter of time before we come to the most natural horse racing plot imaginable: endangering a horse's life for personal gain and/or vengeance. So let's get started.
Ashleigh = Kris
Mike = Matt
Brad = Junior
Wonder = Wildfire
(For all of us just tuning in.)
Branching off from the last episode, where Ashleigh and Brad made out under the stars, we start this installment with Ashleigh and Brad in her trailer. They are not making out, but are in fact doing what I always imagined Ashleigh and Brad would do: they are discussing how Brad wants to talk and Ashleigh "doesn't see the point." Eventually he gets her to agree to a totally platonic dinner, despite Ashleigh insisting that they just do everything backward (They sleep together, kiss, and now dinner...what could be next? Introductions?). As she is pressed for time, Ashleigh says she'll go out with him and then runs out to Mike, who is on his motorcycle. They motorcycle their way to the track, where Wonder is in a race.
I will give the show high marks this time around for managing a consistent racing scene. Almost no show, or movie, has ever managed to depict a race in a cohesive manner. This time the announcer says Wonder is in yellow silks. And I spot the horse in the yellow silks. Grand! Next the announcer says Wonder is in front, and by God she is! Astonishing! Then she's falling back...and holy hell the yellow silks horse is in fact falling back! Then at the end of the race, as Wonder comes in last, everyone rushes up to the horse and jockey, who is WEARING YELLOW SILKS. !!! I know, this doesn't seem like that hard of a feat, but it actually is (you have to watch enough of this stuff, and I really have by now). The only place where they slipped up is when the announcer insists that Wonder is on the outside when she is in fact on the inside. I'm letting that slide for now, show. But you've shown me I can expect more from you, and I will now raise the bar.
Anyway, Wonder is having a fit, which is pretty classic Wonder. Ian (Pablo) grabs a hose and begins to rinse her off so she'll cool down, and a vet exam later diagnoses Wonder with colic. Somehow. Ashleigh and Mike wander around looking for suspicious things Wonder might have eaten, and find cattle feed in the trailer. Then they proceed to shake down everyone they can about the cattle feed, leading them to Carlos, a past employee of Whitebrook whom they had to let go during their financial crisis. Carlos is pissed that they just assume it's him, and then Mike's new bookie comes along and throws Mike around because he wants his five grand now.
This makes me quite pleased. Mike does stupid so well, it's nice to see him back in character. The bookie threatens Mike that other things will happen if he doesn't get paid, and Mike ignorantly asks, "What do you mean?" Dude, what do you think he means? *rolls eyes*
While Mike is getting his ass handed to him, Brad is washing his Porsche and appears to have made the wise decision to strip his shirt off and douse himself with water. This is totally gratuitous, as Ashleigh isn't even around for him to impress. So I'm going to give Brad tons of points for just being amusing. Ashleigh calls him and tells him dinner is off as Wonder is too sick, and Brad is disappointed and hides this emotion by saying he has a party to go to anyway, which he actually doesn't. In fact, he watches The Daily Show. Then he goes and throws away the roses he was going to give her during their totally non romantic dinner. Well done, Brad. Well done.
So everyone commences freaking out about Wonder, who doesn't appear to look all that distressed, but hell. Whatever. She's no better the next day, and Ian convinces Jean to try some holistic approach to colic. The next thing you know there's some guy massaging Wonder's face.
And Mike decides to sell his motorcycle after having "the talk" with Ashleigh about his gambling problems. He wants to stop! But he can't! And he likes his dad better than his mom, maybe! Ashleigh's all "I have total platonic faith in you!" And then they go on a last ride on the motorcycle. It struck me then that the area they're filming this is really very gorgeous. I just thought I'd say that.
Also Dani apparently had some pap smear issue, and Brad goes to find her at the hospital and is scared she's sick. So he puts his sister before Ashleigh, who has rescheduled their platonic dinner for that very night Dani has to go to the hospital, leaving Brad to pick her up instead of eating with Ashleigh. Brad shows up late at Ashleigh's trailer, and she's all pissed off, especially after he won't tell her the grizzly details of what he was up to at the hospital. She storms off and freaks when she finds more cattle feed! And Carlos's truck was, like, right there!
So Ian calls up Carlos to have a chat with him, and while Carlos is busy being all offended, Mike is sneaking around his truck, cutting into all his feed bags looking for the cattle pellets. As it turns out, Ashleigh catches Carlos's son putting the pellets in Wonder's stall and she tackles him and makes him admit his motives. It's your general vengeance scheme. No more, no less. Then Ashleigh sleeps in Wonder's stall and she's miraculously better in the morning. Dani arrives shortly after to tell Ashleigh that Brad picked her up at the hospital, and he's surprisingly not superficial. He's a nice guy, aka not a gambling addict. Go with the non addict, Ashleigh. Go.
This brings us to evening at Whitebrook, where Mike and Brad are watching female celebrity boxing. Ashleigh comes in and they quickly switch it to opera, and she's naturally suspicious of this, asking them what they were watching before. Mike begins his attempt at saying they appreciate opera and Brad just gives him that look. Mike quickly says something about getting ice cream and Brad is all for that, so Ashleigh sits down with Brad and she says she talked to Dani and they haven't kissed in nine days and they go to start making out right when Mike bounds back in with ice cream and they scurry away from each other like nothing was happening.
Then they presumably watch opera. Or female celebrity boxing. We don't know.
I liked this episode. Obviously I'm not going to get into the details of colic and holistic healing and why massaging a horse's face is going to help in this department, but let's just cruise right over that and be astonished that they managed to keep the silks consistent this time. And I like to see some character development, which I saw in this episode. Grand!
Next time in posts involving me and my television: Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken. You guys want my take on the horse diving movie, so that's what you shall receive.