TV Reviews

Genius Season 2 Episode 9: Picasso Chapter Nine Review

If you would like to read my review of the last episode, click here.

Synopsis: Gilot defies Picasso and pursues her own goals. Younger Picasso finds respite from his strained marriage with Olga. (TVGuide) 

Writers: Raf Green & Ali Gordon-Goldstein

Rating: TV-14

Director: Mathias Herndl

Running Time: 43 mins

Airs: Tuesdays at 10pm on The National Geographic Channel (Canada/United States)

This episode should be called, “The Women of Picasso”, because that is truly what this week’s episode is about. While every week we are shown his past, present, and everything in between, this episode spends all its time showing the women Picasso was with throughout his adult life, at least the later portion of it.

For someone who didn’t know much about this great artist prior to the show, the life he led was so amusing. Every woman he was with was a step to the next one and a part of his artistic journey. Each one influenced him in a different way, and this is represented through the work he created.

In this week’s episode, Francoise is all but fed up with Picasso’s constant absence as she starves to create art. She is presented with an opportunity to go to Paris for two months to help set design a ballet (much like Pablo once did). Picasso abruptly refuses to give her permission to go because she needs to be a mother to their children. However, he is once again being disloyal to the woman he is with because he has found a new muse who he entertains in a different home in St. Tropez.

When Francoise learns of this other woman, it solidifies her decision to take the job in Paris and leave for two months. In her absence, Pablo’s 17-year old daughter Maya will take care of the children. Picasso is very sour over this decision but cannot stop an eager Francoise from pursuing her dreams.

We also experience the budding romance between Marie Therese and Pablo and also witness the moment he first met Dora Maar. Marie was an innocent virgin when she first met Pablo, but things rapidly changed as their relationship continued to grow. As years went by, Pablo didn’t step out in public with Marie, mainly because of the fear of his wife, Olga. But then Marie got pregnant with Maya, and although Pablo tried to divorce Olga, he opted not to when it meant giving up his artwork in the process.

As has become expected of Pablo, he grew tired and demotivated living with Marie, after he left the home he had with Olga. Enter, Dora Maar. His relationship with Dora was a sensually passionate one when they first met, but Dora began to fall hard for the infamous Picasso.

In Paris, Francoise found happiness and a sense of accomplishment working for the ballet, and although she missed her children, she was really finding a place for herself. All the while, Kostas, a young gentleman she met through Pablo’s nephew, began to indirectly court her. She continued to keep him at arm’s length but the opening night of the ballet, things came to a head. Picasso came to support her, but then told her he was happy she would be returning home to her proper place as a mother. This irritated and angered Francoise and led her straight to Kostas’ bed.

Ultimately, she made the decision to leave Pablo once and for all, and take the kids and move to Paris. And though he doubted she would actually do it–she did.

Next week we are heading into the season finale which is sad considering how riveting and engaging this season has been. I can’t wait to see how the story will wrap up, but I will dearly miss learning about Picasso’s escapades and life story.

Score: 8/10

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