Story of a Marriage

You know what’s a great idea? A really good, sensible, great idea? Marrying a man you can’t really stand before verifying any of the negative information you were just given about your previous fiance.

Oh wait, no, what I meant was CATHERINE THIS IS THE WORST IDEA YET.

That’s right, friends, Cathy just married Julian.

They go to London to perform and Cathy is over the Old World pretty quickly–the dance space is lacking, there’s not enough hot water, and oh yeah, SHE’S MARRIED TO JULIAN. Julian who never lets her leave his side, who tries to follow her to the bathroom, who interrogates her about her past and gives her shit about not really loving him when she doesn’t answer fast enough. Now that you mention it, Julian… Cathy’s cover story is that both of her parents died in that car crash and that the three Ds were on the run from an orphanage when they met Henny and Paul. Julian wants to know why she married him if she loved Paul so much and when Cathy points out that he basically harassed her into and that it’s a big mistake, he cries and she feels guilty about it. No need, Cathy. She does worry that she’s impulsive like her mother and that one I must sort of concede.

Julian asks Cathy to love him and overlook his flaws, which no, but he makes a rather good point that Cathy puts the men in her life on pedestals and then judges them when they fall off, a point which I agree with, but given that Julian’s flaws are jealousy, anger, physical violence, and infidelity, I say keep an eye on them.

In the spring they return home and Cathy has to tell her family what she’s done. She also notes that Paul is now 43, so she’s 18 and Paul is a monster. Just FYI. Turns out that no one is too pleased with the news, and uh oh, it also turns out that Amanda wasn’t quite telling the whole truth. Julia did in fact survive her suicide attempt, and was in a coma for many years, but she died a couple years prior. And the fetus, the one Amanda claimed was Cathy’s? A souvenir of medical school and nothing to do with Cathy at all. This truth-telling session has the side effect of confirming to Paul that Christopher and Cathy have slept together, but he tells Cathy that he understands. And, that though he wishes she’d come to him and ASKED HIM about Amanda’s stories, he understands why she married Julian too. And because no one in the whole wide world has ever gotten a divorce, particularly not in show business, Cathy is resigned to her fate.

While they’re home Georges (Julian’s father) dies, and Cathy sees a little of the root of Julian’s anger (his father only cared about him as an extension of his own talent and never cared about Julian as an individual) and Madame Marisha basically tells Cathy that Julian worships her, so she should never ever ever disappoint him and should just be the best of all wives. Ai yi yi. Suddenly the healthiest relationship in this book is between the brother and sister.

Speaking of! Guess who isn’t too thrilled that Cathy has married Julian and would, in fact, have preferred that she marry their father figure instead? Well, Carrie, but also Chris! Cathy just can’t win. She and Julian go back to New York and he informs her that he doesn’t like how close she is to Chris or Carrie or (especially) Paul, so he’ll be keeping an eye on her all the time.

Well, that’s healthy.

Time passes and Chris graduates from college. He comes to visit Cathy and has to pretend he’s there to see Yolanda since Julian hates him and doesn’t want him staying with them, and Chris and Cathy have to sneak in visits before he leaves. Carrie comes to visit the summer she turns 15 and Cathy is uncomfortable with the attention that Julian gives her younger sister. That’s because he’s a creep, Catherine. Julian and Cathy go to Spain for a vacation (we do hear that Corrine was there as well, though she quickly left for England when the gossip columns noted that the Marquets were visiting), where Cathy receives Chris’ medical school graduation invitation. Julian throws a right fit when she broaches the subject of attending, and we learn the extent of Julian’s abusive ways: Cathy has to mother him essentially, choosing his clothes and making sure he eats, but he won’t let her have any financial control and he’s physically and sexually abusive. He also threatens to beat her badly and steal her passport, then tell everyone she’s sick and can’t dance. The next morning Cathy drugs him with his coffee so that she can fly home for Chris’s graduation.

Should’ve used more.

Ahem.

The graduation is great and Cathy gives Chris a microscope as a gift, one he’d always wanted since he was a kid, and though there’s some awkwardness with Chris telling Cathy yet again that he’ll never love anyone but her, it’s a nice time and one Cathy badly needed. And then Chris hands her a newspaper with an interesting tidbit of ballet gossip inside: apparently Julian will be partnering Yolanda in the performance of Giselle that they’re taping for TV, and Cathy is rumored to be sick. Frickin’ Julian. Oh and Cathy is pregnant. She goes to visit Madame M, who gives her more nonsense about how she needs to cater to Julian all the time (but shouldn’t have let him have control of their money, because he’s a child man) and how she realizes that Georges really messed Julian up with his constant criticisms and expectations. And Cathy realizes suddenly how very alike she and Julian are, and that she loves him. Oh no.

Chris accompanies Cathy back to New York since he doesn’t trust Julian at all (good) and surprise! They go to where the company is rehearsing and watch as Julian struggles to partner Yolanda, who is naturally a screaming nightmare on stage. Cathy goes to Madame Zolta, who tells her that it was Julian’s idea to replace Cathy with Yolanda, but that it’s a huge mess and Cathy needs to get out there. So Cathy changes and warms up and heads to the wings to dance out. Yolanda tries to stop her (and informs Cathy that she’s been sleeping her bed and using all her things) but Cathy shoves her out of the way and dances onstage. She and Julian begin dancing and he tells her that he’s done with her, then jumps into the air and comes down directly on her feet, breaking several of her toes. He leaves as Chris runs up to help Cathy and Madame Zolta tells Cathy that Julian is fired.

Well it’s about damn time.

Coming up: Cathy writes more letters, and we lose Julian but gain Jory.

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3 Comments Add yours

  1. Sarah says:

    Hi Megan! Long time reader, first time commenter here. I discovered this blog a few years ago while desperately searching for something to keep me occupied on a super slow workday, and I came back about a week ago for the same reason. There were new posts! Yay! I dove into the Petals recaps, and imagine my horror when I finished ‘Story of a Marriage’ and there was no next post to click on! But rejoice! I noticed it was from only 2 days ago, and now have hope that there will be more to come! Anyway. This is pure gold. Your’s is the voice in my head and your snark is…it’s everything to me. Christopher ‘powder blue all the way down’ Dollanganger…I have no idea why but this description moves me. And the screencap of Bart from the Lifetime ITBT movie, with ‘ladies and gentlemen, Bart Sheffield’…I let out a loud HA! at my desk, followed by several minutes of (unsuccessfully) muffled snickering. Those are just two examples of the brilliance that is your writing. Okay. Now that I have bestowed you with praise…any plans for recaps of Lifetime’s SoY or MSA movies? PLEASE please please do us that favor.

    1. Megan says:

      Hi! Thank you so much for your comment, it made my day! I DO plan to recap the SoY and MSA movies, they’re sitting in my Amazon video library as we speak! Thanks for reading, and yep, there will be more to come!

  2. So glad you’re back! I feel like the VCA community is roaring back to life. The podcast is picking up steam, you’re blogging again, lifetime still sucks but we’re getting a Dare Wright miniseries on HBO which is the closest possible thing. ❤ ❤ ❤

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