god talking to nicole about o’brien just makes me so upset because yes the 2011 CS established that o’brien had limits to her cruelty (or rather, re-enforced this bc we already knew this after the S1 finale) and thomas didn’t have any limits yet and that was the difference and that was what was driving the wedge between them but no apparently not according to S3
more facts than headcanon, but under a cut to save everyone the headache
I think I may disagree - O’Brien was the one who hazed Ethel at the beginning of S2 and Thomas perved on Mr. Pamuk without invitation. Arguably, O’Brien thinks she’s setting up Thomas & the new boy for embarrassment not imprisonment. Arguably.
The extent to which these actions are being carried out and the depth and reasoning behind them really isn’t substantial for me. Yes, they’re both capable of these actions and it’s definitely not out of the realm of possibility, but everything leading up to it isn’t making sense.
Thomas was extremely forward with Pamuk, but that ended up with him being forced to lead Pamuk to Mary’s bedroom (something that did make him uncomfortable) and then the discovery of Pamuk’s dead body (something that made him really nervous and uncomfortable). He’s forward often, but he’s not stupid. He really shouldn’t be this blind to the fact that Jimmy is being uncomfortable around him. Also like flirting with someone while their awake is really different from creeping into their bedroom and stroking their sleeping face. That’s a level of audshf that really isn’t in Thomas. And much, much left after you factor in season one, which you’d expect would have shook Thomas and taught him to be more careful.
Also the fact that he’s trusting O’Brien on this is just bizarre?
Also, hazing Ethel for making a few jabs at her is completely different than setting up Thomas to be outed. O’Brien isn’t Bates’ biggest fan, but she was majorly rattled after the trial. It doesn’t make sense for her to be setting up her (former) best friend to face the same consequences. She wouldn’t do that. Not unless she was more severely threatened, angry, and not thinking about it. (See: soapgate, which was a purely emotional reaction that had plenty of unintended consequences and hell of a lot of guilt.) It doesn’t make sense for this to be a calculated move on her part. That she’s been biding her time and playing towards it. That doesn’t make sense based on who O’Brien is and how, when you are in her corner, she will tear her own arm off for you, really.
Like, the crucial element missing from this is a) any sort of build up in their scrimmages (it was there for one episode and then it was gone??) b) more concrete examples of the closeness between Alfred and Sarah and really just c) Sarah O’Brien existing as a human being on this show and not as some sort of dark agent of Satan she’s been diluted to this season.
Also this entire plot is just really gross and a bad idea on a whole and god, just give Thomas mutual love and Sarah O’Brien some fucking lines that recognize both of them as the complex characters they are/can be. They’re not villains. They’re embittered, but they’re not this bizarre black and white entities of evil.
Edit: Also Jimmy explicitly stated he’d go to the police to make Thomas stop last episode, so the fact that Sarah’s still going through with this knowing that is just no. Stop. This isn’t you.