Nine Perfect Strangers Season 1 Episode 2 Recap – “The Critical Path”

By Daniel Hart
Published: August 18, 2021 (Last updated: November 18, 2023)
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Hulu series Nine Perfect Strangers episode 2 recap


Not everything is what it seems, as Masha has to battle with a group of resistant participants.

This recap of the Hulu series Nine Perfect Strangers Season 1 Episode 2 contains spoilers. 

Read the recap of the previous episode. 

So now we’ve established that this resort is not at all what it seems and that the participants were clearly selected for a reason, the Hulu series slowly pulls the viewers in, giving elements of what Masha is trying to achieve.

Nine Perfect Strangers Season 1 Episode 2 Recap

After Zoe ran off, Francis finds her having a panic attack. The topic of death has really touched Zoe; the brother of the family died three years ago before his 18th birthday. This is why Heather took Masha’s subject of death so personally. Back at the gathering, Tony is still angry that Masha and her team took things from their bags.

Lars then reveals that Masha only accepts than less 10% of the applicants; she’s looking for damage. Tony speaks to Masha privately, and she tells him he is a drug addict. She gives him his medication and vodka, and she tells him to take it immediately, but she believes he wants to get better. Tony takes one of the pills and downs the small vodka bottle as Masha smiles.

The next day, the retreaters have to dig ditches. Masha tells them to lie down in them. She tells them that they spend all their life avoiding the inevitable — death. Her colleagues throw soil over the participants as Masha tells them to think about what they worry about to stop them from having an exceptional life. Francis calls the exercise ridiculous because if she died, no one would care. Masha brushes her off and advises them all to come up from their ditches feeling rebirthed.

Jessica sits with Masha and tells her she wants to fix what’s broken. She’s visibly nervous but explains that Masha makes her anxious because she’s super smart and intuitive. Jessica explains that when she was in the ditch she admitted she wanted her life to feel important and mean something. Masha changes the subject and asks Jessica why Ben doesn’t love her anymore. Jessica breaks down in tears.

Some comedy arrives; as Francis is sleeping in the pool, Tony throws a grape in her mouth, and she starts choking. Tony has to save her and denies he did anything, but then she sees his bowl of grapes. Tony then asks her, “who’s Paul?” as she said it in her sleep. Francis explains she met a man online and fell in love with him. However, the man was a catfish and asked her to send money. Francis wonders if 6 months of love and companionship was worth it. Tony then claims he read a newspaper article about her book, and Francis is shocked because it’s about one of her unpublished books. The article was critical of her work.

The ending

During a trust exercise, Heather stands on a cliff edge; Zoe and Napoleon panic, but Delilah tells the family to step back as she takes in the sea breeze. Delilah holds Heather’s hand and stands with her. Was this Heather facing death? Later on, Zoe tells her father that she saw what her mother was about to do. She tells him that her parents are the problem and not her.

Delilah speaks to Masha about Lars; she feels he has an agenda. However, Francis interrupts the conversation and tells Masha she feels she has to go. Masha tells Francis to sit down and tells her they can fix the broken parts and asks her for “one more day”. Afterward, Masha tells Delilah that this is a volatile group, so they need to start the protocol. Delilah and Yao are shocked that they are starting the protocol early. This is more than just a resort, this is Masha’s world, and the characters are all living in it.

Additional points

  • Jessica tells Francis that she’s a big fan of her work.
  • At breakfast the next day, Tony apologizes to the table for his actions the night before. A few people on the table claim to recognize Tony, but they are not sure where from.
  • Heather tells Napoleon that she’s angry and that being upbeat is making her feel alone. She explains she’s at the resort because she misses liking him.
  • Masha tells Yao that she has received some disturbing threats that are anonymous. She then asks if Delilah is okay, suggesting she is jealous before kissing his legs.

What did you think of Nine Perfect Strangers Season 1 Episode 2? Comment below. 

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