“Bad Sisters,” a brand-new Apple TV Original developed by Sharon Horgan, Dave Finkel, and Brett Baer, released on August 19th, 2022, is a dark comedy based on the Belgian show Clan.
“Bad Sisters” is a story of five sisters: Eva, Grace, Ursula, Bibi, and Becka, who are closely knit as siblings and look out for each other as much as they can. John Paul Williams, married to Grace, with whom she has a kid, Blanaid Williams, is highly unlikeable as a person, and the siblings tolerate him just for the sake of Grace.
‘Bad Sisters’ Episodes 1 & 2: Recap
Episode 1, titled, ‘The Prick’ begins with the death of John Paul Williams, played by Claes Bang. Grace, and her sisters, come to terms with his death and their reactions to it. John Paul Willaims’s death doesn’t come as a surprise to the sisters, but a lot of it is left for the rest of the episodes. “Bad Sisters” Episode 1 sets up the dynamics John Paul Williams shares with his wife, daughter, sisters-in-law, and their children and spouses. John Paul Williams is a narcissistic, control-freak, emotionally abusive husband to Grace and their daughter, plus he is on horrible terms with his wife’s sisters. Fed up with his antics and plenty of attempts to control Grace, the sisters meet for an annual swim during Christmas and briefly discuss eliminating John Paul Williams. One of them takes it seriously.
Episode 2 titled, ‘Explode a Man,’ begins with insurance agents, Thomas Claffin and Matt Claffin investigating the death of John Paul Williams, for they must pay a huge premium to John’s widow Paul but since his company is close to bankruptcy, he is adamant about looking for a foul play in John Paul’s death. In the mood to interrogate, he ends up at Eva’s home, but she rebuffs his intention of walking over. It is revealed through a flashback that Bibi, the fourth sister, was serious about her intentions of eliminating Joh Paul Williams and formulates and discusses the plan with Eva. Eva initially is against the plan, but one bad verbal altercation with John Paul Williams makes her change her mind. They all want to save Grace from a bad marriage. Their plan works out as they decide to fake a leak in the cabin house in the woods, which will blow up the cabin, killing John Paul. Only for the plan to go wrong, which doesn’t kill him.
‘Bad Sisters’ Episode 1 & 2: Explained – How does John Paul Williams Die?
The cabin is tampered with by Bibi and Eva by forcefully making the oven leak a flammable gas to kill their brother-in-law. The cabin blows up as planned, but John Paul Williams, fortunately, or unfortunately, was outside the cabin when the horrific explosion took place, putting Eva and Bibi on the back foot. Meanwhile, Becka Garvey, the youngest sister, ends up getting attracted to the younger brother/partner of the insurance agent investigating John Paul Williams’s death, unbeknownst to her.
The back-and-forth narrative so far is interesting as it makes the audience wonder if, if not this way, how did John Paul Williams die? The beginning of the show also did not expand on how exactly his death happened. A weird thing happens. John Paul dies with a highly visible erection. The reason behind it will surely be seen in the coming episodes.
“Bad Sisters” so far, through two episodes of “Bad Sisters,” has been effective in conveying the effects of emotional abuse in a long-term marriage and how it is difficult for people stuck in a marriage such as this one to get out of it and set themselves free. Grace constantly worries about how or when her husband will find out, perpetually stopping her from doing what she wants and controlling their daughter’s life. This is a *trigger warning* for those who have experienced emotional abuse in any relationship, even though the genre of the show is a dark comedy. John Paul is a racist, sexist, and a bigot, and the showrunners have left no stone unturned in painting him as a bad person and have given him zero redeeming qualities.
John Paul Williams may have died most bizarrely because for him to get an erection before his death would mean either his food was messed with, or he was in front of something or someone that aroused him and killed him. The 10-episodic show would delve into various manners in which the sisters try to kill John Paul, or maybe they weren’t able to eliminate him. Nature called it a day and decided it was his last day on the planet.
“Bad Sisters” is highly convincing in showcasing why abuse should be dealt with, but hopefully, it doesn’t justify the murder of a human being. It will take a while for the viewers to understand how John Paul was killed and by whom. Hoping the writers wouldn’t stretch the show unnecessarily. Sharon Horgan (who has starred in it as well as Eva), Dave Finkel, and Brett Bae have put forth an interesting narrative and plot points, but with some plot holes in the second episode of “Bad Sisters.” I’m waiting for it to be busted in the coming episodes.