Clique episode 2 review

BBC Three's new heightened psychological thriller is finding a nice rhythm by the end of episode 2...

This article comes from Den of Geek UK.

This review contains spoilers.

After the shock ending of the previous episode, Holly’s understandably a bit curious about what the interns and, by association Georgia, are really getting up to. Making tea and getting photocopies doesn’t usually end with you jumping off a hospital roof after slitting your wrists.

She does everything she can to track down a still-missing Georgia, and when she does – having sex in her dorm room – there’s barely a batted eyelid. Because we’re watching a television programme that promises to fit into the psychological thriller genre, we’re expecting things to unravel in a fairly sinister way, but to the characters this seems like a pretty standard suicide. If suicides can ever be standard, that is.

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But Holly’s got that look in her eye – the look teenage protagonists get when there’s a mystery afoot and she’s the only one who can solve it.

Two dissociative moments see Holly hallucinate Faye’s ghostly image around campus – a clue to some trauma in her past or just a symptom of having been witness to the horrific event? The brief flashbacks to Holly and Georgia’s friendship are also still being spliced into the present-day action, hinting at a dark secret in their past. Holly had friends before, but they fell out because of something she did.

When Holly finally tracks her down, Georgia reveals that she’s been offered a room in the interns’ house (presumably Faye’s old room, which is rather morbid) and brushes off Holly’s concerns over the hysterical phone call she’d received the previous night.

Luckily Elizabeth, Clique’s obligatory sidekick/stalker/exposition machine, is on hand to tell Holly everything the girls might be looking for in new recruits. It’s all geniuses, rich parents and fake job titles (HR is apparently code for party planner) and I’m trying hard not to compare Elizabeth to Pretty Little Liars’ Mona. She knows too much.

Back home after Faye’s funeral, Holly is seriously losing it. Downing red wine and cyber-stalking the interns via their professional profiles, she’s also getting dressed up and awkwardly sexting Sam apparently without realising. He loses out to Rory, who also appears at her door to ask if she’d like to attend to Alistair McDermid’s fundraiser with him.

Of course, said fundraiser is the same one Georgia and the other girls will be attending, and Holly’s plan to infiltrate the group starts to fall into place without her even trying. “It feels like a game”, she says, with Rory replying, “welcome to the real world.”

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We get another glimpse of what might be fuelling Holly’s obsession when she relates to Alistair‘s grief over his wife – it makes it harder when people remember the departed as some kind of saint. Who do we think died? And will this be related to whatever 11-year-old Holly did? The plot thickens.

After snorting way too much cocaine (did anyone else have this ready access to drugs when they were a student?), she pukes on an important guest and runs out of the party. By the water, she starts having trauma flashbacks of the past and eventually walks home barefoot.

Once there, she tells Jude over a cigarette how she decided a long time ago never to lose control, which is probably why she’s so fascinated with the chaotic, hedonistic lifestyle of these other girls. Having heard her being honest with herself for perhaps the first time in years, Jude tells her she’s in.

Holly feels a lot less like a blank slate this week, with that little bit of madness sparking behind her eyes. She’s still on the outside, but inching closer and closer towards the world she wants to be a part of. As a realistic portrayal of university life, Clique doesn’t really cut it, but as a heightened interpretation of women’s entrance into the mysterious, sometimes dangerous adult world, it’s finding a nice rhythm.