This book to me, as it slaps me over the head: "Why are you hitting yourself? Why are you hitting yourself? Why are you hitting yourself?"
Me to the book: "Leave me alooooone!"
I have a total love-hate relationship for this series. The torture and sexual assaults are so gut-wrenching and visceral that it is actually horrible to read. But I can't stop. Maybe I'm like Mat - looking for a fighting chance. Or maybe I'm like Dougie - hoping for a glimmer of kindness. But holy hell, this was another intense ride.
Hey, Rachel and Heidi, I think I see a tiny little bit of hope you left over there. Stomp on it for me, okay? Yep, that's it. You got it.
In this episode, we get a better look at Nikolai. And I almost want to like him, to believe he's not as bad as everyone else who's had Mat and Dougie in their power, but that's not true, is it? A more civilised monster is still a monster. His logic and his intelligence don't make him a better man. Because while he's being almost kind to Dougie (considering the circumstances...which Nikolai could change, of course, if he really wanted), at the same time he's torturing the hell out of Mat. Which is the logical and intelligent thing: the brothers require different training, after all. See? A monster.
And that's the very clever thing about this series. You think they're only fucking with Mat and Dougie's heads? No way. They're fucking with all our heads as well.
I hate it. I love it. I hate it... more, please!