Inara and Mal participate in some twee, snotty Victorian dance of some sort. I don't know what it is or the style, and I don't care. Inara wants to know what Mal's doing there. He explains, rather loudly given the surroundings, that he was talking to Sir Benny about a smuggling job when they came over to bother her. Inara insists that Mal was staring. Mal insists that he just glanced over. Mal is correct, by the way. He mentions that Inara "stands out" in the crowd. Inara says that, given his line of work, Mal is actually the one who stands out. I don't know; he's seems to be doing pretty well with the snotty dancing. There's a bunch of sexual-tension bickering about the fact that Inara is a space hooker and Mal is a thief. What Inara does is legal but dishonest. What Mal does is illegal but honest. This is from Mal's perspective, of course. Mal points out that Atherton is parading Inara around as if he actually "won" her, and everybody goes along with it. Okay, paying for companionship might be a little sad, but acting like a woman agreeing to voluntarily date a guy means that he "won" her is just as sad, or even more so. It's still treating her like an object. Inara insists that she likes these people, and Atherton as well. Mal responds, "Well, sure. What's not to like? I'm liable to sleep with him myself." Inara insists that Atherton likes her, and made her "an offer" to become his personal companion. She says it may seem pretentious, but it would be a great life for her. Mal agrees that he has "no call" to stop her from having a happy life. There's a quick shot of smirking, evil Atherton leering at them in dismay, just in case that you didn't quite understand that Inara would never be happy with Atherton. Inara notes that she sees Kaylee around. Mal says that she was thrilled when he let her have that "layer cake" of a dress. Inara says she thinks Kaylee looks adorable. Mal responds, "Yeah, but I never said it," meaning, I think, that he realizes that he's being a jerk to her.
Episode Report CardShack: B- | 1626 USERS: C+
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