|Series 04, episode 02|
|Date aired||20 April 2007|
|Previous episode||Sophie's Parents|
Conference is the second episode of the fourth series of Peep Show.
Summary[edit | edit source]
Johnson entrusts Mark with managing a team of workers to figure out a way for marketing to be a branch of sales. The project will be called Project Zeus and a presentation is required to be given to the JLB board in Kettering. Nervous but excited, Mark accepts the challenge. He gathers together some people from work, including Lisa, Jeff, Sophie, and Gerard, who has a mucus tube around his face.
When Johnson arrives to wish everyone good luck, he notices Big Suze, Jeremy's ex-girlfriend who he's managed to get back together with. He tells Jeremy that she's a "mighty fine piece of ass" and that he'd like to pay Jeremy a sum of money (530 pounds) in order to sleep with her once, or in his words, "A real life indecent proposal". Jeremy tells Johnson that he can't sleep with her, but he can finger her for 300 pounds. Johnson is about to take the offer off the table, when Jeremy says he can sleep with her for five hundred pounds, but it needs to be on a one-use basis.
When Jeremy suggests the idea to Big Suze, she is horrified and promptly leaves him.
Mark quickly becomes furious when he notices that the people in his team are taking too long to come up with any ideas. The members of his team start quitting after Mark becomes increasingly rude and bossy. He tells Sophie that he is only acting this way so that they can someday enjoy the corporate life together. Still, Sophie quits the team. When Jeff proposes a plan that incorporates another branch of the company as well, Mark is furious and crumples up his proposal, saying he will take it to the bathroom with him so he can wipe his ass on it. Jeff promptly quits, leaving Mark only with the constantly sick Gerard, who Mark refers to as "my elephant man".
Meanwhile, Jeremy discovers that Big Suze has left him for Johnson despite the fact that she knows Johnson wanted to pay Jeremy to have sex with her. She refers to Johnson as an "alpha male" and it becomes clear that in a day or two they have already started living together, and that she will be going with him to the conference in Kettering where Mark will be presenting Project Zeus.
Jeremy follows Mark to Kettering, in hopes of winning Big Suze back. He sees her in the hotel bar and tries to get her to get back with him, suggesting that she is only with Johnson because he's black. Big Suze claims she never noticed he was black. Jeremy tells her that Johnson is "terrible at being black" because he isn't cool or rebellious enough. Big Suze says loudly that she won't be with him because he tried to sell her body. When the other people at the hotel bar hear, Jeremy tries to "explain" the situation to them.
Mark finds himself "celebrating" in a strip club with Johnson, Gerard and Big Suze, since Johnson is under the impression that Mark has already finished his presentation for Project Zeus. Mark has no desire to be at the strip club, and insists on working on Project Zeus on his laptop when Big Suze buys him a lap dance. The stripper begins to criticize Mark's work on Project Zeus telling him that "his aims are too diffuse". Mark yells at her but she continues to dance for him, angrily.
The day of the conference, Mark realizes that he and Gerard have come up with absolutely nothing. Mark briefly hides in the bushes, saying that he might "join Al Quaeda" and marry his lap dancer, if he quit JLB. Sophie finds him in the bushes, and he confides in her. She tells him that he should just go to the conference, apologize, and tell the truth.
Mark sees Jeremy climbing out of a window and picking money off the ground, which happened as a result of his asking Johnson to "pay up". When he receives the money, he throws it out the window as a gesture to show Big Suze how he loves her more than any amount of money. When she tells him she still won't be with him, he climbs out the window and tries to gather all the money.
Mark eventually decides he will do what Sophie told him to do. He arrives at the conference (through a window) and tells them that Project Zeus is unworkable, but that perhaps JLB should go into a different kind of work, like humanitarian work. Later, when everyone talks about him in front of him, he pretends that he has brain cancer and is dying. Johnson reassures them that Mark will be dead in a month.