After Hannah gets a bad online review, Stephanie sends a scary client to her apartment; then a one-night stand won't leave
Billie Piper, Secret Diary of a Call Girl, ...

‘Secret Diary of a Call Girl’ recap: Scary guys

If you’re like me, and you spent the week wondering what A levels were in relation to lovemaking (a Google search of ”A levels” and ”sex” uncovered naught), then you certainly know now. You also know Hannah does it, and that it’s in demand. But, more important, you know how Hannah’s first meeting with her ”agent,” Stephanie, went a year ago when she started hooking, and that Stephanie knows Hannah’s real name, but not vice versa. And that their relationship over the past few months has devolved into something weird. I don’t get if it’s jealousy, disappointment, or just being a mean boss, but Stephanie is no longer out to be Hannah’s best friend. She’s not even out to protect her.

Which brings me to another thing we finally got to see in last night’s episode: Being a slut is dangerous. I’m not referring to the crabs and the pregnancy scares (though I wish the show would cover those at some point). I mean the really creepy, nasty johns like Hannah’s punter yesterday — the ones who come to your house and still know where you live. When he entered, he was all sweet and awkward, then he turned into a domineering, paranoid bastard. I still don’t know exactly how she got him to leave — and I’m confused as to why Stephanie would send him to any of her girls, even the one with a bad online review. Oh, the review…

So Hannah and her co-whores discovered that a former client had posted a nasty write-up about Hannah on the agency’s website. The gist of it: Give this frigid lady a pass. The outcome: Hannah’s workload thinned out quickly. I wondered why a commercial site belonging to an escort service wouldn’t censor its posts a bit (even some news sites do it) to get rid of the damning ones. But who am I to argue with Call Girl‘s support of freedom of speech? Desperate, and apparently getting to bed before midnight (odd for a hooker, I would think), Hannah accepted an out-of-the-ordinary late-night in-call from the aforementioned lunatic. Big mistake, yet not totally her fault: Stephanie should have mentioned that she’d dealt with him before and knew this guy was trouble.

My guess: It was some sort of test of Hannah’s mettle or a punishment for her bad behavior. Forget the critical review — Hannah did leave a punter stranded at a party, and she did double-dip on clients off the books. She’s also pretty cocky, always talking back to Stephanie at their meetings. Nevertheless, she was totally in the right when she told Stephanie that if this happened again (bad review or not), she would hightail it to another agency and tell the other girls that this madam was not to be trusted. (Do I sense a plotline in the future where Hannah dabbles with another escort service? Oh, how Naomi.)

NEXT: The thing that wouldn’t leave

The frightening encounter sent Hannah running to Ben, who, also a little freaked out by the whole thing (perhaps because he worries about her, perhaps because he still loves her), bet Hannah ten pounds that if she tried a normal life for a bit, she’d like it better. The joke’s on him! Can Hannah do the 9 to 5? Can she stand jumping to attention when she gets a cell-phone call from her boss? Can she deal with getting yelled at by customers or dealing with the boredom of downtime? Can she rush to get supplies or do inventory? On the one hand, no: After a day at the park, watching how the other half lives, she was disgusted. On the other, how different is she, really, from all the poor sods she observed and the people she knows who live regular lives? She snatches her phone whenever Stephanie calls, as a woman did in the park. She gets yelled at by Stephanie and her johns, just like the traffic warden did. She rushes around picking up shopping and struggling with packages, just like the guy who dropped his folder and work papers on the path. She gets bored. And from the organized shelves of shaving cream and massage oils in her bathroom, we know she does inventory like Ben. Now, can her buying an S&M outfit be compared to her sister’s going to Gymboree? I guess not, but the point still stands: Hannah isn’t that different; she just thinks she is. She also has a weird relationship with sex, in that she loves it but doesn’t feel like it’s something people should get for free.

Which is probably why she went so cold on her sweet, gorgeous one-night stand from the wedding-gift store. (Billie fans might recognize him as Matt Smith, who plays her sidekick in the Sally Lockhart Mysteries — they’re really keeping this show in the family). Shoot this guy for wanting to stay and have breakfast or take her out for lunch. (That said, I do like my alone time as well, and he was a little clingy.) Luckily, Ben came to the rescue, posing as her fiancé.

Which raises a question: Ben is more than happy to keep Hannah away from punters, but why does he also help her get rid of the nice guys? Why doesn’t he push her toward having an average relationship with a normal dude? Now, is this because he wants her for himself? Or just because he understands and appreciates her — and gets the fact that she doesn’t want your day-to-day boyfriend-girlfriend thing? I’m going to go with both, especially considering that he went online and posted a glowing review for her, enabling her to get back to work. He knows hooking makes Hannah happy, and as long as she’s doing that, she’s also not looking for a steady boyfriend that isn’t him. At least, that’s what I think.

But, what’s your guess? This, by far, was my favorite episode (it dug into the Ben relationship, while adding a little fear and excitement to the plotline). Was it close to being yours?

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Secret Diary of a Call Girl
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