Episode 7: Srugim’s Beard(s)

Srugim Episode 7

So the reoccurring themes were projection and rootlessness. Everyone spends their days wandering around the streets of Katamon.  Hodaya takes out her life insecurities on Asaf, Amir unloads his job insecurities on Yifat and Roi and Reut– we will get there later. Pretty much everyone on the show has turned into major disappointments. We are eagerly awaiting some redemption. But until then….

Realer than a man being punished for having no children with a trip to Auschwitz

Even Nati’s voice message is douchy. He needs some help stat +10

Hodaya totally Debbie Downered Asaf’s dream of becoming a journalist. When you are insecure you do try to make everyone else around you feel like a failure as well. (although discouraging someone from joining the journalist profession– good call) +40, especially because we hope this makes Asaf move to Tel Aviv

Hodaya is also passively aggressive forcing Asaf to break up with her because she feels guilty about Avri. Once he does she can run to Avri guilt free. Classic move. But it seems the more she acts like a bitch the clingier he gets. This will not end well. +25

Dati girls having no sense of humor, although if Amos Tamam was our teacher we would be all after-hours as well.+ 30

If we have learned anything from movies set in the eighties it is that gay men go to parks for sex. The gay in Roi is clearly being drawn there subconsciously. +25

Amir’s growth as a character seems to be to unload on Yifat anytime anything bothers him. When she says she needs to concentrate on his work the only thing he can say in response is who will cook for Shabbat. He seems to have settled into his Sephardi gender roles pretty easily. No wonder your first wife dumped you. Yifat finally got some spunk and told him to do it himself or get take out. Come on Amir, you are having the same 2 people over you have every week and you can never get through the meal without someone leaving in a huff. How important is the food really?  At this point you might as well just buy challah and wine, you never get much further then that. +10

All right, not to get in trouble here but Amir and Yifat’s marriage  seems pretty bad. Roi and Reut seem to have more romantic tension then these 2. We are not married but married readers weight in? IS this typical? Is the romance gone and you are left with 2 people who seem to kind of hate each other but live together?

So it seems clear that gay men being encouraged to get married in order to have families and work their issues out is not so out of the ordinary among datiim in this community. You know who it also not uncommon for— right-wing Mormons. They even have a term for it (we learned this from Big Love). Good job Modern Orthos. +5

When Reut and Gay Married Friend have coffee, the song Geulah is playing in the background. Maybe Reut is Roi’s redemption. Nice touch.  Laizy,this is why we love you. +10

Also, we like how Roi goes from spending ten years in yeshiva to holding reut’s hand. +10 because welcome to the dark side roi and Reut is adept at magically turning her boyfriends away from shomer negiah, which just makes us like her more (remember when Yohai kissed her?)

Amir even though you are a tool you have nice arms. +5  for the gratuitous shot in the tank top

Next time we want to get out of something in Israel, we are going to say we have reserves. + 5

Faker than a B.A. Bible student being able to read an entire book in German

Hodaya, what the hell is wrong with you? We understand that your waitress job sucked, even though it’s totally obnoxious to leave everyone like that when shit gets tough. But you run away from an interview and seem to think you can survive on thin air. Look, we understand that guy at the Bible museum was boring as hell but please. grow up. And when you do, bring back Avri. -15

Also, who falls asleep on a bench and Jerusalem and sleeps until morning? The cats would eat you alive and you wouldn’t make it. Also, when you sleep outside you wake up at dawn. Duh. We know this from camp.  Also, don’t act suprised when your friends think you have gone bat shit crazy.  Maybe it was the german–lay off of those foreign books for a while. My friends who are getting psychology PhDs say she’s bipolar. I’d believe it. Maybe that’s why Roi and Amir don’t see her because she is currraaaazy and is just imagining them.-50

Why can’t Roi just text Nati that he is locked out of the apartment, or borrow someone’s phone to text or even go to Hadassah hospital which is not that far. Basically it seems pretty stupid that he would spend the entire day outside, especially because we learned he is a high-powered lawyer in another episode.-10

Amir, you are a tool. You are mean and cannot deal with women more successful than you. Good thing your wife is only really good at bar mitzvah invitations. hahaha. Go be mediocre together. Maybe thats why you are perfect for each other. -10

Nati, YOUR BROTHER IS GAY. Deal with it. It’s not a reflection on your overbearing heterosexuality, because god knows we still think you are cute and we kind of hate ourselves for it. (Ok, maybe just Shayna). -20

Roi’s weird friend is really…weird. As Dovid says, he looks like Wooly Willy, those things with magnet shavings for facial hair. Ew. Stay away. Also, are you really going to trust the guy who waits until the second kid? We just think you want Roi for yourself. -only 10 because we can’t blame you too much because Roi is hot

Also we’ll admit that sleeping on the roof is cute (why is everyone sleeping outside this episode? ) and we maybe even liked it when Reut watched Roi daven because he’s so frum and he’s cute when he davens. But again, when you sleep outside you wake up at dawn and its never as fun as it sounds because its gross. Also, shouldn’t Roi be going to shul to say kaddish? Not cool. -15

Oh lord Roi and Reut. We don’t even know what to say. Reut is awesome- SHE IS NOBODY’S BEARD!!!!!!* We can’t believe this plot line is even moving forward. -1 billion

Do you think, you readers, that this kind of situation could ever work out? We don’t but we know that some of you readers (looking at you Mr Greene) think its ok as long as you tell the girl. Consider the wise words of Murray, circa 1995 from Clueless.

Murray: Your man Christian is a cake boy!
Cher, Dionne: A what?
Murray: He’s a disco-dancing, Oscar Wilde reading, Streissand ticket holding friend of Dorothy, know what I’m saying?
Cher: Uh-uh, no way, not even!
Murray: Yes even, he’s gay!
Dionne: He does like to shop, Cher. And the boy can dress.

Truer words were never spoken. ROI IS GAY. Reut, we know it sucks but you gotsa to get away before he brings you down too. You deserve so much better.

So this episode seemed a little more fake than real. We think the writers may be sacrifincg character consistency and believability for new plot points that examine “real issues” facing datiim. Hopefully Reut will soon realize she is fierce and no one’s beard (ala Jennifer Aniston and every guy she dates) and Hodaya will stop being a five-year old. If not, Yifat will officially be the fan favorite. Crap.

* Definition of beard, taken from Urban Dictionary :  a man or woman used as a cover for a gay partner

Till next week….

18 responses to “Episode 7: Srugim’s Beard(s)

  1. Thank you for another wonderful recap – especially useful for this episode.

    While Reut is making a big mistake with Roi and I don’t see how this can end well – she is clearly in love with him and, while he may not be attracted to her sexually, he loves her as well. In a strange way, it is the healthiest relationship on the show – not really a high bar.

    Amir was being a jerk – but it does not really seem to fit in with his charachter. Maybe we got a hint of this from Michal who said that men are afraid of women who are smarter. He dated an broke up with Michal – perhaps because she was smarter. If you recall, he pretended to forget that she was not fired from the school, but got a better offer.

    The biggest mystery and disappointment is Hodaya. I always found her to be the strongest charachter. She grappled with real issues, but ultimately knew what she wanted and was not afraid to call BS on people around here – similar to Reut. She also seemed the most self-aware. True, she is a little lost, but it comes from an honest place. She snapped in this episode – but it is not clear why she snapped and why she went downhill so quickly – at the end of the episode she also seemed to be high.

    Again, thanks for the great work on the recap.

    • excellent point re amir. he has always had self confidence issues re his career as a grammar teacher, from the very first episode.

      also, you are right–roi and reut may be the healthiest thing we have right now. eeek.

  2. Roi holding Reut’s hand was not actually a halakhic problem on his part, since he was not attracted to her physically. It was still a problem the other way around, however.

    At her age, Hodaya was far more likely to have gotten an MA (תואר שני) in Bible—not a BA. That’s why she had to learn German: it’s required in many institutions for Jewish Studies on a graduate level (in order to read all those academic works written in German).

    • hmmmmm. interesting interpretation of derekh hiba, althought i would perhaps argue that halacha is heteronormative–ie it follows norms that any time a girl and a guy hold hands, its by definition sexual because that’s how halacha thinks of sexuality, so it doesn’t really matter how roi feels.

      and i always assumed it was a BA, not an MA, but thats a possibility. but as someone who has to learn German as a research language for my PhD, you don’t have to become fluent you just have to be able to sludge through a text with a dictionary. but maybe they are meaner at hebrew u.

      • To paraphrase a relevant Talmdic narrative, one could say that Reut is like a board of wood to Roi (sexually speaking, that is). One might even say that it’s an issue for him to touch men to whom he’s attracted.

        Yes. That’s why it’s so surprising that Hodaya was able to finish a whole book—she never meant to learn German that well.

  3. as per the marriage portrayel, i think they do a great job depicting what marriage is really like. not that it stinks, but that it requires effort and commitment to each other. Yifat is always putting in effort, she is classic like you have described in previous posts, but amir only puts in effort sometime, and when he doesnt it stinks, and thats really what happens, marriage takes work and he just seems self centered sometimes, he put in some good lines in the beginning ….lets hope he brings some back otherwise it doesnt look good…..

  4. Great recap, but it’s never a good sign when the recap is more fun than the show. Although the show manages to surprise with bigger picture things, many of the subplots have become either predictable or simplistic (ex – who didn’t see Amir getting jealous of Yifat’s initial success coming from a mile away?).

    I think the show can do a lot better in terms of character development, too many are becoming caricatures.

  5. The name of this episode “Shafal Ruach” is also a name of a popular song by the group HaMadregot – the same group that asked Yifat to show them her graphic design ideas.

    Its always fun to find these cross-references.

  6. Thanks for another great recap. I think Amir should get more than +5 for his miluim excuse- I’ve seen Israeli guys arrange to actually have miluim in order to get out of doing something they didn’t want to do.
    Definitely agree that Reut needs to get herself out of this situation, not a good idea at all.

    • That is def true. Some people seem to have miluim like every week– i always wondered if miluim was code for getting drunk of eilat beaches.

  7. Luv it guys-

    As a future Dr. of Psychology, I don’t think Hodayah is bipolar. Her irresponsibility when it comes to handling her job is very related to the way she is dealing with the stress in her relationship…by running away from him and staying out all night. After all, when she quite, he was annoying her by not being helpful. I think this reflects the fact that she has not yet been able to transition into what Dr. Cote and others define as adulthood, the ability to have enough ego strength to be responsible to others.

    On another psychological note, I do not think that Amir’s issues of professional jealousy is small. I think that he is doing the typical dance of wanting to be supportive and proud- even recommending she make the professional move in the first place, and dealing with his own frustrations at the same time. From the way a friend of mine describes her own failing in her graduate program compared to her husband’s success, it is hard. Misery love company, but upward comparison is just another reason to feel terrible about yourself. Its raw and real.

    • This also sheds new light on Hodaya’s breakup with Avri in season 1. She did effectively pick a fight with him that night that was going to be her original “wedding night”. When we saw it then, it seemed to be about her guilt on betraying her dati roots, but in retrospect, maybe it was more about how she dealt with stress and commitment in many aspects of her life.

  8. Sara and Shayna, I LOVE this blog, but please tell me how I can watch Srugim online. I watched the first season on The Jewish Channel and then canceled because that was ALL they had. I’d love to know how to watch it so I can fully understand your recaps. Shira sweiss@weissmediagroup.com

  9. I just randomly came upon this post, so I know it’s a year later, but Shira, The Jewish Channel is now showing Season 2 of Srugim.

  10. I know this is super old but I love these recaps.
    +15 for Yifat wearing the same shabbos outfit as another episode. So typical Israeli to have only a few outfits and wear the same one Fri. Night and shabbos day.

  11. Ditto! I’m completely enjoying these posts after every episode. (Watching on Hulu in the U.S.) Thank you!

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