After a trailer and prosaic season premiere, the stakes are finally high on Skinny Girl in Transit. The show has ostensibly restocked on the ingredients that made it such a compelling lightweight drama in previous seasons, using familiar plot formulas. Yesterday’s episode, “Jealousy,” introduced the first stake that Tiwa must surmount albeit in a seemingly loving relationship with Mide. They have gone running together as a couple, modestly fitfaming their way through potential relationship destroyers played by Ayodeji (Ekpenyong Basset Asuquo), the shirtless muscled candy who has crossed Tiwa’s path twice. Their relationship is comfortable and participatory, which are elements Tiwa’s sister Shalewa wants to replicate in her own relationship with Mohammed (Timini Egbuson). “All you know how to do is talk talk talk and kiss kiss kiss,” Shalewa complains to Mohammed in his car before he starts the engine.
At Tiwa’s radio station, Tiwa continues to perennially feed slices of her personal life into her show The Gist, which has remained structurally unchanged since the show’s very first episode and it’s been an integral emotional mechanism for her to exercise catharsis. But The Gist, with all of its glossy, pop-cultural leanings, has stunted throughout the last two seasons. The show creator Temilola Akinmuda and writers Bunmi Ajakaiye and Damilola Elebe haven’t added any creative, refreshing depth to Tiwa’s show. And maybe that’s really just the idea – to be purposefully small and unglamorous and therapeutic in its predictable, monotonous sequence.
When Didi, Tiwa’s colleague, brings a gift bag to Tiwa in the studio and makes the erroneous assumption that it’s from Mide, we already know that it has to be from Fabrice. Tiwa’s one-night stand from last season still hovers like a spectre, and when Tiwa confirms his identity as the sender of the gift, we are given more context about his intentions. He has a new radio station in Lagos and wants Tiwa to cross-carpet to his outfit, but still we can’t say if there’s more to his desires. Didi, ever curious and gregarious, probes Tiwa for details all the way to Tiwa’s house where Shalewa catches a whiff of contained secrecy and joins both of them in Tiwa’s room. It turns out that the story of Fabrice from her trip to Abuja last season is what Didi and Shalewa are familiar with, and their collective counsel nudges Tiwa towards telling Mide the truth about sleeping with Fabrice. There’s playful, casual slut-shaming rhetoric from Didi which, on a bigger picture, mirrors society’s chronically skewed perspective on a woman’s unbridled sexuality. Now, Tiwa is faced with a tough, unpalatable decision. She can either come clean to Mide before he finds out about her past or risk everything. And with only just three episodes in, the stakes can only get higher from there.