Friday, 25 November 2011

The Slap episode 5 review - Rosie: confusing sympathies in the toughest episode yet

More lurching emotions and characters contemplating their dramatic-navels while having a thoughtful bath - that was basically episode five of The Slap.

It was all about Rosie, as played by Melissa George, and it's fair to say that Rosie's divided both the characters and the audience. She's certainly divided tv-ooh.

Rosie's been fiercely protective of her four-year-old son Hugo - who was of course slapped by Harry in episode one at Hector's 40th birthday barbecue - and her determination to see her idea of justice brought about has caused all sorts of shouty scenes and characters slamming doors a lot.

But episode five almost managed to make Rosie sympathetic as we took a closer look into her life.

She's devoted to her son of course - in fact she still breastfeeds him; but her discipline is non-existent (she tries once but then apologies), and her house is scruffy with the bath in an outhouse, and is no match for the houses her friends have.

Most significantly, her partner Gary's a bit of a beardy deadbeat with no ambition (and an alcoholic), who doesn't think she should still be breastfeeding, and didn't think the case should have gone to court.

After Harry was found guilty but not punished, Gary disappears to the pub and Rosie unravels a bit, causing her to seek comfort in her friend Shamira, a Muslim convert, and her husband Bilal.

But he tells her to stay away from his family - her chaotic life and skewed but well-meaning values are things he doesn't want influencing his wife.

Looking at the hard time she got in the dock, on one hand Rosie got the comeuppance she deserved,  but on the other - it's hard not to feel sympathy for her too.

She doesn't have very much, but is kind to Anouk's sick mother, and loves her son, but her determination to not listen to her closest friends' or partner's advice came at a cost to herself.

The result, as usual with The Slap, was tense and involving - but this was the bleakest and gloomiest of episodes so far. Even Hector in his speedos, seen emerging from a dip at the local pool, didn't really cheer things up.

Three episodes to go.

Where next?

Related stories:
The Slap episode seven review - Aisha: Another part of the jigsaw
The Slap episode six review - Manolis: It's all still quite bleak...
The Slap episode five review - Rosie: confusing sympathies in the toughest episode yet
The Slap episode four review: Connie - this week it's a coming of age drama, with scenes in a vets
The Slap episode three review - Harry: TV drama as washing machine (in a good way)
The Slap episode two review - Anouk: It was good; we liked it
The Slap episode one review: Where logic and emotion collide, sort of, at a barbecue

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