Fifty Shades Freed: Chapter Seventeen

by thethreepennyguignol

Yeah, so it’s been three straight weeks since I last wrote one of these and I’m sorry for that. It’s summer, which means most of my time has been spent hanging out at the park near my house in full camo gear watching cute dogs from the bushes doing greatly interesting and very cool summer things that a peon like you could only dream of. Yeah, that should do it. Side note: if you are looking for some romance and erotica that is not quite as crushingly badly written as this, please check out the “buy my books!” section I just installed above. And on with the round!

Last time, we left off with Ana getting the call to tell her that her stepfather, Ray, is in the hospital after a car accident. Mr Rodriguez (Jose’s Dad and the guy driving the car at the time of the crash) tells her that her father has been airlifted to Portland. She packs up her stuff and leaves work immediately, telling her assistant to cancel all her appointments for that day. Her assistant replies with “we’ll muddle through”, which I’m choosing to read as some monumental shade because Ana does literally fuck all but email her husband at work. Ana’s assistant will now be played by me in the upcoming Fifty Shades Freed movie.

Ana calls Christian from the car, and his business partner answers; she tells Ana that he has “a habit of wandering off sometimes”, so maybe in this universe being fucking atrocious at your job is what you need to succeed so Ana is canoniclly excellent? I don’t know. She gets hold of Christian and he tells her that he has to finish up a deal before he can come up to be with her which, you know, pretty cold.

Ana gets to the hospital and heads to the ward where her father is being held, and finds Jose’s father in a whee-

Hold up.

She finds Jose’s father has been consigned to a wheelchair after the accident. Now, in case you forgot, Jacob’s father in Twilight is in a wheelchair too:

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The fucking tits on this plagiarizing, idea-free-zone of a writer! I don’t know why I’ve chosen this to get so annoyed about this chapter, but come on! What, did she waltz into Stephanie Meyer’s house and just start picking out cutlery and pillows she wanted to? Ugh. UGH.

Jose – who was also in the car – comforts Ana and recounts the details of the accident. The bodyguard who drove Ana to the hospital gets her some tea:

” It’s not Twinings, but some cheap nasty brand, and it tastes disgusting.”

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One- It’s a fucking hospital, and I beg your fucking pardon if their tea isn’t up to your meticulous standards. Two- In what world is Twinings some kind of snooty, unfathomably delicious brand for the upper-classes? I mean, I don’t want to play into the stereotype that all British people are obsessed with tea, but I’m obsessed with tea and Twinings isn’t, like, the be-all and end-all watermark against which all other teas must be judged. EL James is British, for fuck’s sake, how could she have fucked this up?

Christian arrives and does his best to comfort Ana, even though he an asshole about Jose lending her his jacket to keep her warm:

“”But you’re cold?” he asks, eyeing José’s jacket.

I nod. He shifts in his chair, but wisely says nothing.”

Fucking right he wisely says nothing. At this time, with her surrogate father in intensive care after a serious accident, the last thing Ana needs is to worry about her dick-swinging husband coming in to stake his territory at her. God forbid another man show her compassion, Christ. But oh, it gets worse. The doctor (played now by Jodie Whittaker) comes out of the operating theatre and addresses Ana:

“”Miss Steele—”

“Mrs. Grey,” Christian interrupts him.”

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THE. FUCK. It’s time like this when I really struggle to believe that EL James wrote this character as unlikable as he is by chance. You can’t look at that scene – wherein a doctor attempts to give vital information about the fucking life-or-death state of a relative, and Christian has to dive in to remind this doctor and everyone else that he’s married to/owns Ana – and think this makes him looking anything other that a screeching, flailing, feather-flying jack-off. Can you?

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I went to see Nicole Kidman’s new movie The Beguiled recently and man, she was just great. Go watch that. 

The doctor explains that the operation went okay, uh, right up until the point where Ray had a heart attack and his heart stopped beating:

“We managed to get his heart going again, but this remains a concern.”

NO FUCKING SHIT, his heart stopped?! The doctor then announces that Ray’s recovery is “in God’s hands now” which, even as a christian, I have to say is some fucking bullshit. It’s like someone going to a mechanic and asking when their car’s going to be fixed and them responding “well, only God can truly know”. Like, no, that’s…your job?

Ana waits around to go see Ray, and then visits him, where she thinks about how glad she is he’s alive and how much she loves him. Of course, the nurse starts eyeing up Christian because now’s the time for that, apparently, and Ana finds the time amongst her grief to think “blond is not her true color” because God forbid the woman hate in this book stop for a fucking second.

Christian insists they leave after a while and they check into a nearby hotel where he runs her a bath and Christian is sad because Ana isn’t as “brave and strong” as she normally is. They talks about his ex-subs, and Ana mentions that Leila told her Christian has a couple of Leila’s paintings:

“I think Elliot has them. As we know, he has no taste.”

Ana, of course, giggles at the implication that the man marrying her supposed best friend has “no taste” and what that implies about her, again, supposed closest companion. She scolds him mildly about it but they just keep on snuggling in the bath. The bodyguard brings them some clothes, and Ana teases Christian about “harassing” her at her old job by turning up and learning her schedule. Ha ha ha, stalking is hysterical!

Jose visits them and lets them know that Ray is still the same; he leaves and tells Ana he’ll see her tomorrow, and Christian announces that it’s just so obvious to him that Jose is still cccrrrrraaazzzzyyy about Ana. To which Ana…praises him for not getting angry? Fuck off. I’ve been thinking a lot recently about this – that a lot of people seem to expect so little from men in terms of keeping control of their temper, and they earn backpats for not going off into as destructive a rage as they could have as opposed to getting their asses handed to them for being tantrumy dicks in the first place. What I’m saying is Christian Grey is a perfect microcosm of everything wrong with the way we excuse toxic masculinity. That’s what these recaps have been leading to. You can stop now. I can’t.

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Christian has called his mother (who is a doctor), and she’s brought in an old college buddy to treat Ray which…somehow isn’t totally intrusive, but sure. This chapter is just being zoomed through and there isn’t a lot to actually write about. Oh, obviously excluding this:

“I can just about tolerate you wearing another man’s jacket without frothing at the mouth, but, Ana . . . you must eat. Please.””

Christian needs to get hit by a car then fed to my cat.  Yes, well done Christian, for not getting furious with your wife for being comforted by a friend at a time of need. What a hero. Gold fucking star.

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Have a cookie.

Christian tells her to sleep, Ana drifts off, and this chapter is over. Poke me if I don’t have another recap up next week!

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