The Bold Type 3x05 “Technical Difficulties” Review
Welcome to Episode 5, where something seemingly impossible just happened: Patrick was a little bit likeable for like… a minute?
Don’t get me wrong, he’s still The Worst. We do, however, get to see him fail and react to that failure in this episode. This seemingly rare misstep comes about because of a massive hack of all Scarlet company information. They’re essentially in a blackout, meaning that the website is down, social media is down, and every file and email they have is being held hostage by a hacker group demanding 30 million worth of bitcoin. If they don’t pay the ransom, anything and everything they have will be made public.
This is terrifying for Jane on both a personal and professional level; she and Jacqueline had finally made some progress tracking down a victim of photographer Pamela Dolan. She had just opened up about the abuse she went through on set, and as a next step in the investigation Jane was trying to get the names of other people who were at the photoshoot to back up the story. Unfortunately, the threat of a massive data leak also means that this woman’s name and testimony will be revealed, all without her permission, and could result in a ruined career. In fact, when Jane and Jacqueline stopped by, she was even worried about her roommate finding out.
Even more unfortunately, Patrick decides that with the website down he’ll instead update Twitter to let everyone know why Scarlet was in the middle of a blackout. He even created the hashtag #saffordhack to address everything specifically, which is not only a terrible idea, but something he was told not to do.
Jane’s pissed, as she should be. Despite the blackout she does her best to track down her source and convince her to reveal some other possible witnesses, but due to Patrick’s ill timed twitter rant #saffordhack is now trending and the whole world seems to know that Scarlet is being held hostage. Jane and Scarlet have now lost their credibility when it comes to confidentiality, which essentially means Jane’s investigation is over (for now).
As I mentioned before, Jane is also worried on a personal level. Apparently she created a drinking game (just coffee, she says) out of Patrick’s annoying work habits. One shot every time he says “namaste,” chug half your drink when he meditates at his desk, things of that nature. She’s also not shy about being critical of Patrick via email, so it’s easy to see why she’d be afraid of those things being made public.
With that being said — has she never heard of just sending a text? It’s not a genius move to use your work email to talk shit ABOUT work and about the person who happens to be your boss.
All of this comes to a head at a dinner party Sutton and Richard are hosting for a few of Richard’s friends, all of whom happen to live in Connecticut and have children. They’re also annoyingly wealthy, all of which combined make up my personal worst nightmare and what I assume is also Sutton’s. Within the first minute of introductions one of Richard’s friends mentions something about hiring a personal assistant, so the class divide is readily apparent.
The evening is also complicated by a few other things: Sutton is expecting news about her entry into the fashion seminar she applied to at any moment, which means she jumps anytime her phone goes off. She also happened to stumble upon some emails that revealed Richard and one of his friends at the dinner party have been emailing real estate listings in Connecticut back and forth, worrying Sutton that he’s planning a life she doesn’t want. Then, to complicate the complications, Richard decides to invite Patrick along after he found him sulking about being reprimanded for tweeting about the hack. THEN Kat has some relationship drama after inviting Tia to the dinner party….. But I’ll cover that later.
The dinner party was certainly A Lot. I will admit without shame that my favorite part was a drunken Jane telling off Patrick, revealing her drinking game and schooling him about how serious the hack is. Patrick is of the opinion that they shouldn’t negotiate with the hackers, but as Jane points out, protecting Scarlet and their information is much more important. She all but called him an idiot, which I greatly appreciated.
Sutton also finds out she got into the fashion seminar, which starts a discussion in which one of Richard’s friends calls Sutton’s designing a “phase.” Sutton shuts that down immediately, reiterating that this is a career for her and not something that she’s taking lightly. As a reaction, another of Richard’s friends burst into tears, apologizing and blaming it on being stressed out.
Dinner parties are fun, guys!
Jane and Patrick do eventually talk, with Jane offering an apology and Patrick opening up a bit about his recent misstep handling the leak. I don’t exactly expect them to be friends, nor to I expect Patrick to stop being insufferable. Every show needs an antagonist and Patrick suits that role well, and even though his start was pretty problematic I’m glad that they’re giving him a bit of dimension.
Sutton and Richard come to an agreement that she’s happy building a life in New York and that he’s willing to wait to “settle down” in the burbs, although I wouldn’t be surprised if this issue comes up again. Afterall, she’s 26 and he’s 40. It’s all well and good that Richard wants to let Sutton grow as a person and in her profession, but I don’t think it would be out of the question for Richard to get impatient.
Poor Kat also had a hard time of it this week, struggling with her newfound romantic interest in Tia and trying to understand their relationship. After speculating for a while, Tia told Kat she’s straight, but despite this Kat kept getting mixed signals. I’m not sure what’s next for these two, but whatever it is I’m hoping Kat recovers quickly and they can still function well with Tia as her campaign manager. Kat’s political storyline thus far is well done and interesting, so it would be a shame to let this ruin it.
Overall, I’m pretty happy with this episode. I’m also relieved that The Bold Type is introducing some longer arcs this time around in the form of the hack, which wasn’t resolved this week, and Jane’s Pamela Dolan story. The show is good, but it often falls into the trap of wrapping up conflicts and stories within a small time frame, which works episode to episode but not as a season overall. They’ve done a pretty good job of keeping up the intrigue, so as long as this pattern continues, the last half of the season will be solid.
The Bold Type airs Tuesdays at 8/7c on Freeform.