Renata Klein in season two of Big Little Lies is like some kind of angry force of nature. She just…does things. She seems to have problems completely separated from the others, and she’s mad as hell and not going to take it anymore.
Meanwhile, Mary Louise comes in and has been passive aggressively wrecking lives all around her in that calm, quiet voice. She’s as abusive as her son was without being the slightest bit physical about it.
How about a showdown between the two?
That’s one of the main events for this episode. Renata, in the middle of her financial problems, offers to talk to Mary Louise on Celeste’s behalf and maybe calm things down. Mary Louise has already started stuff with the judge in the child custody case just to rile Celeste up. And it may be working.
So, really, I had some high hopes for the character that became the surprising favorite of mine matching wits with this season’s villain. And what happens? Well, more or less what I should have thought would happen.
See, I forgot, I suppose, just how much Madeline tended to own Renata over and over in season one. And as much as she’s come out as much tougher than I had originally thought, well, she’s mostly been hitting at her pathetic husband. So, how does a firebrand deal with someone like Mary Louise?
Well, Mary Louise just keeps quietly remarking on how empty Renata’s house is. As such, Renata just…shuts down.
Because that is what Mary Louise does. She’s not even hiding it anymore since she does the same thing to Madeline later the episode. She just knows exactly where and how to hit people with her words. Yes, everyone knows she’s doing it. But how can you stop her?
So, while Madeline and Ed try the world’s lamest couple’s retreat, Josh and Max come to Ziggy’s defense in the schoolyard, the real problem is Mary Louise. Or Bonnie’s guilt. Or even Jane’s new boyfriend Corey, last seen exiting the police station…