Friday, August 19, 2011

Russian Dolls: Recap Episode 2 “From Ukraine With Love"

Seems like the Fashion Show was in February

Here we go! This episode is basically all about Anna and her modeling school. Modeling is her life. Anna came from the Ukraine when she was 9 years old. Anna says she and her family, including her grandmother, live in a small two bedroom apartment…grandma sleeps on the couch. Her mother is judgmental whenever she looks at Anna’s photo shoots and that makes Anna work even harder. Anna says that guys are just a hobby for her, she has gone out with many and cheated on all of them. Anna’s modeling school is called Link Model Management. She invests everything she earns into her school hoping that it will be successful enough to one day move her family out of that small apartment.

Anna school is having a modeling show. If the show is succesful, she will get new girls to enroll. She plans on opening more businesses in the future. The show requires a lot of planning, she has to get the models ready and she has to promote it. Renata Krumer, a local radio host and celebrity, has offered to host it. Anna’s mother will be listening to the radio as Anna is a guest on Renata’s show to discuss her fashion show. One hundred people are expected to be guests.

Meanwhile, Anna also needs to relax with her friends. All work and no play makes her exhausted. She goes out with Albert and Eddie and Anastasia and Diana, for a few drinks. The discussion starts off with a little joking and Anna makes the mistake of telling Eddie he has no money. That comment is extremely insulting to Russian men. Eddie immediately lashes out at Anna and hits her where it hurts. He calls her a fake model and says she has done as a model. He says her modeling school with 12 year old models is nothing. Anna cries in anger and frustration. Her feelings are hurt. Eddie went in for the kill. Anna goes outside to cry. Eddie feels bad and goes out to apologize to her. She doesn’t want to hear anything from him. As far as she is concerned Eddie has crossed the line.

At Anna’s modeling school, Anastasia pays her a surprise visit. She wants to make sure Anna is okay after the fight with Eddie. Eddie was going to come, but Anna insists she doesn’t want to see him, she is still mad at him. Anastasia feels that Russian guys make sincere apologies. Anna holds grudges. Anastasia, who has been friends with Eddie for 16 years, says she should be thankful he apologized, but Anna says he didn’t mean it.

Anna goes to Renata’s house. They are supposed to discuss the fashion show, but Anna confides in Renata about her fight with Eddie. Renata is easy to talk to. She tells Renata that Eddie spit on everything she cares about. Renata, after hearing all the facts, tells her it is never good to tell a Russian man he has no money. That is a huge insult.

Anna takes her fitness very seriously and works out all the time. Anastasia arrives and tells Anna that she told Eddie everything they talked about concerning the fight. Anna gets very angry and feels that Anastasia betrayed her confidence. Anna feels she should have had her back, it’s girl code. Now Anna wants nothing to do with Anastasia either.

The day of the fashion show arrives. Success of the show means more girls in the school which means more income for Anna.

Back in Anastasia and Diana’s apartment the girls talk about going to the show. Anastasia tells Diana she doesn’t want to go, she doesn’t even want to acknowledge Anna’s existence. Diana decides she will go and be the diplomat. Boris and Renata are at the show. Anna says she needs to be successful for her parents. This is her first show and she is nervous.

Eddie arrives at the show. He is being the bigger man and making an effort to show Anna he is sincere in his apology. But, Anastasia stays true to her word and doesn’t show up. Her empty seat, with her name reserving her place, sends a big message to Anna about the kind of person Anastasia is, especially because Eddie did show up. Anna feels she knew how important this show was to her and still did not bother coming.

The show gets underway. Renata starts things off by announcing the runway is about to begin. Svetlana says the show was “raw” but it is obviously that Anna put a lot of effort into it. Anna’s mom was proud and happy for her daughter and yet managed to have a few complaints she needed to voice. Eddie and Anna make up. Anna now feels that Eddie appreciates what she is trying to accomplish, but Anastasia has failed her as a friend.

Now for my take on this episode. Overall, I was pleased with it. I think this episode will get good reviews. We clearly see that Anna has ambitious goals for herself and works very hard to succeed. She also demonstrates great concern for her parents and wants to improve their living conditions. She has put a great burden on herself at a very young age. She is a very beautiful, young lady and really has what it takes to be a successful model, but this is a very competitive field so opening a modeling school is another way to pursue her dreams in this field. Anna makes a very good impression.

Renata always appears to be sweet, gracious, and she has class. I look forward to seeing more of her in the show. The fight between Eddie and Anna was pretty mild compared to most reality show fights, but also more realistic. There was nothing outrageous about it and I liked the way they were able to makeup and get past it. Anastasia should not have taken sides. Anna and Eddie were confiding in her and she should not have betrayed Anna, and she definitely should have put their differences aside and gone to the show. Anastasia seems to have a short fuse, I’m not sure what to think of her at this point.

I have to admit there were really no negative aspects of Russian culture brought out in this episode at all, and I was surprised. I hope to read some positive comments from the community regarding this episode.

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