Nina Terrero
December 05, 2015 AT 12:10 AM EST

Say what you will about the writing and tone of The Royals, but one thing is for sure: Its female characters definitely aren’t wallflowers. This episode, each of them had something to say, baring their pride (and in some cases, their pettiness) with some pretty great dialogue and snappy one-liners.

Take for instance, Ophelia. She’s normally not the most forthcoming of women — in fact, for most of last season, she seemed pretty shy — but when Liam shows up at her NYC apartment unannounced, she stands firm, resisting any urge to fall straight into his arms. In fact, her time stateside seems to have given her a bit of a backbone, since she confronts him about fixing her audition. (Incorrectly, I should add, since that was all Gemma’s doing.) 

“It was just like Monaco. Something that was real and truthful, something was twisted into something ugly because of your world.” And she doesn’t end there, stating plainly, “You have to go.” Damn, girl. Liam — all puppy-eyed and broken-hearted — obeys, but in short order returns to the apartment, hoping for one of those deliciously sappy, soap opera-esque second chances. But here, The Royals veers away from the usual formula. What Liam finds instead on his return to Ophelia’s is that she’s hooked up with — and is playing house with — Nick from last season. (Remember him?) Looks like our prince will have to find his happy ending elsewhere. (Which I approve of, since the prospect of a show with him and Ophelia as a couple is about as exciting as day-old tuna fish salad on white bread. Ew.)

While Ophelia is resolute about staying prince-less, Eleanor is playing stubborn, too. By now, we all know the story: Beck is the one person other than her father who saw her good side, and who seems to have been able to steer her on the straight and narrow. However, naked Beck just doesn’t quite stack up to the allure of a bubbling bong, and if she can have the two of them, all the better. That being said, when she reaches for her pipe post-coital, Beck is clearly disappointed. “So much for slowing down, Eleanor.” Since Eleanor isn’t about to ditch the drugs, he decides to whisk her away on a surprise trip to the country. 

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“Tell me there’s a music festival or something nearby,” Eleanor says, after hopping out of the car. “I never understood why people liked going to the country. There’s nothing to do.” Not even the prospect of spending the whole weekend in bed can change how she feels, especially when there’s a hot club opening that night in Chelsea. Oh, Eleanor. However, our princess is a master manipulator and goes on picnics and plays footsie with Beck until he falls asleep that evening, providing her with the perfect opportunity to escape back to London to party. Once there, Eleanor finds herself defended from inquisitive phones by a sexy blonde. Hm. Also, did I mention that said blonde is skimpily dressed, brash, brave and totally reckless? Mandy is a lot like Eleanor, and two the strike up a quick friendship as they bond over booze and boy talk. “Timing is everything, right?” offers Mandy by way of commentary over Beck returning to Len’s life. It’s true – and Eleanor having second thoughts about their relationship just 24 hours into their reunion just doesn’t bode well for their future. So what’s a girl to do? Head back to the country to break up with Beck, obvi. 

NEXT: Queen Helena meets her match

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