We open in -- where else? -- the Kim Novak Ladies' Lounge, and although this episode is Gwyneth reference-free, I added a couple of my own, so pay attention. Nicole and Brooke are counting a giant wad of cash that the cheerleaders collected for UNICEF and are happy to discover that they have $500. Nicole says, "There's enough here to buy a Prada jacket and a Gucci tampon holder." Number one, eww. Number two, no, it's not -- Prada jackets start at $1,500 and if there were such a thing as a Gucci tampon holder it wouldn't be any cheaper. Brooke gets one of those deer-caught-in-the-headlights looks. Nicole tells her she's kidding -- but we sorta know she's not. You know, says Brooke, Marley Jacob would be so proud if she knew how much money we collected. (Geddit? Marley Jacob = Jacob Marley, Scrooge's late business partner? Okay, just checking.) Brooke fulfills our weekly menstruation-reference quota by borrowing a maxi-pad from Nicole and retreats into a stall while Nicole has a flashback at the mention of Marley's name . . .
It's one year ago, and Nicole is really nerdy. She's got a really preppy haircut and she's wearing glasses and a crew-neck sweater over a pair of Gap jeans. She's sitting in the Kim Novak Ladies' Lounge, speaking to some unseen person in a stall about how great Marley was and what she meant to Nicole. The unseen person turns out to be Marley, a Blonde of yesteryear who looks like she belongs on the set of Dynasty, and the speech that Nicole is rehearsing is a eulogy for Marley's funeral, which will presumably take place in a week or two because Marley is about to die of anorexia. And can I just add that, for someone about to expire from malnutrition, Marley looks pretty healthy -- not to mention a good ten years older than Nicole. Nicole suggests that she wouldn't have to give that speech if, say, Marley were to eat something. Marley shrugs her off and talks about how fat her arms are. Nicole mentions that the cheerleaders collected a record amount of cash this year for UNICEF. Marley corrects Nicole: the money is not for UNICEF, it's for Nicole and Marley. Nicole protests, but Marley reminds Nicole that her popularity could take a huge nose-dive if she doesn't get behind Marley. Ahh, so that's where Nicole learned to be such a smug bitch. Later, Marley collapses at the mall, where she and Nicole have just spent all the UNICEF money. I presume that this is the last Nicole ever saw of Marley Jacobs.