July 21, 2024

Gabbing Geek

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The Great “The Devil’s Lunch”

Season Two, Episode Four.

The title for this episode refers to a nickname the Ottomans allegedly have for a certain sexual act performed on women that they may or may not be considered sacrilegious according to their faith.

That’s fairly appropriate for an episode where the Catherine subplot involves her needing to get laid.

So, Peter figures that the thing to do is start a war with the Ottomans, a situation that would make Russia unbearably uncontrollable, allowing him to resume power from the theoretically overwhelmed Catherine.

Catherine, for her part, is really, really trying to maker Russia better, but her philosophy discussions over breakfast don’t work when no one reads the tract ahead of time.  About all anyone reacts to is a pamphlet Grigor reads…one from Peter, mostly talking about all the great parties he used to throw.

So, how can these two get anything done, especially as Catherine is really, really looking for sex?

Well, there’s an Ottoman ambassador named Sundak who comes to court to try to negotiate a peace with Catherine, and he’s a bit of a jerk.  Then again, after hearing the Ottomans don’t trust women, Catherine tries to taunt the guy by suggested Marial and Aunt Elizabeth are her top advisors.  That doesn’t work, and she has to swallow hard when the man gives her a rocking horse for the baby.

So, what can the two do?

Peter can throw a baby shower with his usual fun and games.  Catherine can crash it and manage to do better at some of Peter’s games.  Hit a serf with a beet?  Nah!  Toss one at anyone who has wronged you!  Much better game!  Catherine even proposes hunting, a stunt where Velementov does all the shooting for the empress from behind a bush since Catherine probably can’t shoot for anything.  However, Sundak sees through it and turns out to be very reasonable, so success there for Catherine.  Perhaps war can be averted!

As for sex…well, Catherine knows that anyone she tries to get satisfaction with will probably not go as planned.  Most men would want something to keep things quiet.  A nobleman would want land, a soldier a promotion, and so forth.  A guard would keep quiet, but there’s a rash of beard lice going around with them.  Really, the only option, and someone who actually can make Catherine feel pretty good:  Peter.

That was Aunt Elizabeth’s idea.

What is her angle here?

Well, it may need to step up a bit:  Peter had two of his few remaining toadies kill Sundak before he got out of Russia.