Tag Archives: #17

You Can’t Win ‘Em All! – A Recap of Glee’s ” A Night of Neglect”

Hey, Mike Chang .  . . wanna become be a LESS neglected Glee club member?  Here’s a hint: WEAR LESS CLOTHING!

Welcome back, Gleeks!  Has this most recent Glee hiatus left you feeling neglected . . . unappreciated . . . used up and tossed out, like a snotty old tissue? 

Well, then, you are in luck!  Because this week’s installment of Glee is all about that oh-so-familiar feeling of being left out, passed over, chewed up, and spit out.  Talk about a  “Feel Good Episode!”

So, ball up those tissues.  Break out the comfort food.  And crank up the volume on that SUPER depressing song on your iPOD.  Because it’s time for “A Night of Neglect.”

Brother, can you spare a dime?

“Goodbye, money!  It was nice knowing you!”

So, remember the Super Bowl Episode, when the Cheerios, upon losing their national competition, also lost their ENTIRE extracurricular activity budget, in favor of the Glee club?  And then remember how, for about 3 episodes or so, the normally cash-strapped Glee kids suddenly had enough money, not only to travel to Regionals, but also to purchase massively expensive rotating sectional sofas to use as props for their in-school performances about the dangers of alcohol abuse?

Blame it on the alcohol . . . and a REALLY dumb plotline.

Ummm . .  . yeah, well, apparently, the idea of the Glee club actually having enough CASH to attend Nationals was “inconvenient,” for purposes of this plot.  Therefore, the writers had to find some way to make the Glee kids poor again, thereby forcing them to hold the “fundraiser” around which this episode revolved.  So, the writers decided to have Sue steal the money, and reroute it into an “off-shore bank account.”  SURPRISE!

“Just call me Sue ‘The Scapegoat’ Sylvester . . . everybody else does!”

And yet, assuming Sue HAS all this money (and can use a portion of it on her “precious Cheerios”) why is she even bothering sabotaging the Glee kids (AGAIN), in the first place? 

Of course, to even try and answer this question, would require attributing something to this show that it clearly DOESN’T have . . . continuity.  So, we will just move on from here, OK?

Anywhoo . . . so not only do the Glee kids need cash, but the McKinley High Smarty Pants, an Academic Decathalon Team, which, surprisingly, is made up ENTIRELY of Gleeks (Aren’t ALL after-school activities, on this show?) needs money too!  This gives Will and his temporary guest star new girlfriend Gwyneth Paltrow Holly Holiday the idea to raise money for BOTH after-school activities by (1) selling saltwater taffy; and (2) putting on a benefit concert with, a theme that is very near and dear to both club’s hearts: LOSERS . .  . er . . . I mean . . . “neglected artists.”

*sings*  “Soy un perdedor!  I’m a neglected artist, baby!  So, why don’t you KILL ME?”

Volunteering to perform at the event is Vocal Adrenaline Star, Sunshine Corazon, who has “600 twitter followers,” but still claims that she knows how it feels to be “neglected,” because she is “so very short” and “a much better singer than everybody else.” 

Despite having been burned before, by a member of Vocal Adrenaline, who also supposedly possessed a burning desire to “help out the Enemy” . . .

. . . the Glee kids ultimately let Sunshine audition for the benefit.  After all, they are Ridiculously Stupid, very much in need of the audience members Sunshine promises to bring with her to the venue.

“SUCKERS!”

In what was BY FAR the most riveting performance of the evening, Sunshine sings Celine Dion’s extremely-over played, but STILL fabulous, “All By Myself.”  During her rendition, Sunshine captures the heart of a Very Special Gleek . . .

“Nice knowing, ya, Zizes!  It’s going to be a bright SUNSHINE-y day, without you!”

“Dump me for the Munchkin, and I will LITERALLY eat you for breakfast, PUCKERMAN!”

Check out Sunshine’s spectacular performance (not to mention Puck’s SUPER mushy response to it) here; and you will see EXACTLY what I mean  . . .

Welcome to the Legion of Doom!

 While the Glee kids are hard at work preparing for their Night of Neglect, Sue Sylvester is just as hard at work, making sure it fails miserably.  Except, this time, Sue is not alone in her Nefarious Plotting of this Week’s Evil Deeds.

(Seriously?  Can Sue BE any more of a cartoon villain?  Next thing you know, she will be petting a bald cat, perfecting her Evil Laugh, and blabbering on about World Domination.)

Helping Sue to destroy Glee club, this week, are former New Directions’ advisor, Sandy Ryerson . . .

Nice CAPE, Asshat!

 . . . Vocal Adrenaline Coach, Dustin Goolsby . . .

News Flash:  You are INDOORS!  Take off the sunglasses, Vampire LeDouchebag!

 . . . and Will’s ex-wife, and FAKE Baby Mama, Terri . . .

She’s baaaaaaaack!

For such an “impressive” group of Super Villains, the Leagion of Dooms’ schemes to foil the Night of Neglect actually end up being disappointingly LAME.  These plans include having Charise and her “600 Twitter Followers” ditch the benefit, at the last minute . . .

“That’s what you get for sending me to ‘audition’ at a Crack House, B*TCHES!”

 . . . trying (and FAILING) to break up Will’s relationship with Holly . . .

“WTF?”

(Of course, she ended up leaving, ANYWAY . . .)

 . . . and hiring a team of “Hecklers” to make fun of Tina’s performance of Lykke Li’s “I Follow Rivers.”

Most Random . . . Team . . . of . . . Hecklers .  . . EVER!

(And yet, they still managed to make Poor Tina CRY . . . THOSE BASTARDS!)

Which reminds me, is anybody else curious as to why Poor Tina’s musical performances always seem to end with her bawling her eyes out?  (“My Funny Valentine,” anyone?)

As for Tina’s real life “Funny Valentine,” he danced at the benefit to Jack Johnson’s “Bubble Toes,” which made me smile . . . both because I love Jack Johnson . . . and because “Bubble Toes” are just adorably SILLY!

This would have been a whole lot more appropriate, if Mr. Bubble Toes danced barefoot . . . and shirtless.

Granted, it was a bit disappointing that no one actually SANG  the Jack Johnson song, as I think that might have been a nice addition to the performance.  (After all, unlike, most of the other artists featured in this episode, Jack Johnson actually IS a neglected artist, one who is often vastly underappreciated for his unique talents . . . at least, in my humble opinion.) 

I’d say Tina could have sang the “little ditty.”  But she was still crying at the time, and, therefore, would have inevitably converted the song from “Bubble Toes” to Blubbering ones  . . .

Speaking of blubbering . . .

Like a Virgin, Touched (with a Glove) for the Very FIRST Time!

No Glove . . . No LOVE, BABY!

After having experienced so much progress in recent months, it was disheartening to see Poor Emma having fallen completely off the OCD-wagon again, this week.  Recognizing that OCD sufferers tend to see their symptoms worsen in times of extreme stress (AWWW!  He’s been doing RESEARCH on her condition!  He SO Luuuuuves HER!), Will gently asks Emma what happened. 

“Carl’s gone.  He asked for an annulment, which, I guess, he’s entitled to, since we never actually consummated our marriage,” Emma explains dejectedly.

(Oh, the judge must have LAUGHED HIS ASS OFF, when he heard that one!)

“Have MER-CY!”

“How old do you have to be, to look back on your life, with nothing but regret?  Is 32-too young?”  Emma asks sadly.

Knowing an “opening” (See what I did there?), when he sees one, Will sweetly vows to help Emma through this “rough patch” in her life.  To “seal the deal,” he even goes as far as to put on a condom a pair of sterilized gloves . . .  Yep, he’s a slick one, that Schuester! 

Holly takes another Holiday (and this one may be permanent) 

Watching the aforementioned exchange from a nearby window, Holly Holiday already knows she’s been replaced.  But, to her credit, rather than stomping off in a Rachel Berry-like fury, the “adult” Holly sticks around to teach the kids an “important lesson” on the dangers of online (and in-person) heckling. 

(Awww, that was great, Holly!  Without your preachy and super annoying inspired speech I would have NEVER known that it was mean and hurtful to . . . be MEAN and HURTFUL to people.  Thank you, for showing me the light!)

Other examples of the not-at-all obvious teachings of Holly Holiday . . .

Holly also performs Adele’s Turning Tables” at the Night of Neglect Benefit . . .

Riiiiiiight . . . because the young chart-topping female / international music sensation is PRECISELY who I think of, when I hear the words “neglected artist.”

At the end of the episode, Holly sadly admits the following:  (1) She has taken a substitute teacher position in Cleveland, and is therefore, leaving town and the showASAP;

(2) she knows Will and Emma are in love with one another, which makes it kind of inconvenient for her to continue being Will’s F*&k Buddy girlfriend; and

(3) she promises to return the next time she has a film project to promote sometime soon.

“You go and POP that Cherry WILL!  Pop it ONCE AND FOR ALL!  Do it for ME!  Do it for America!”

Speaking of people who are about to DO IT . . .

I’m always chasing Klaine-bows (and so is Karofsky, apparently)

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My favorite non-musical moment from the episode, BY FAR, was Kurt’s and Blaine’s visit to McKinley High to support their friends’ benefit.  Upon hearing Kurt reminisce about the school, Blaine realizes immediately that Kurt misses public school, and all the friends he’s made there.  Unfortunately, this sappy sweet moment is interrupted by the magical “surprise” appearance of Karofsky, who was pining over Kurt, dancing to “Bubble Toes”, rocking out to Adele “lifting weights,” when he overheard the new out-and-PROUD couple strolling the halls of McKinley.

In a swoon-worthy move, Blaine, who knows full well about Karofsky’s homophobic self-hatred, and how it ultimately resulted in Kurt having to switch schools, stands up to the much larger Football Player . . . even going as far as to give him a REALLY HARD PUSH!

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But, then, just when it seems as though a fight is about to break out in the halls of McKinley High, Santana, of all people, steps in to SAVE THE DAY!

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Recalling a time, in the not-so-distant past, when Karofsky had the GALL to SLUSHEE SANTANA, of all people . . .

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OH NO HE DIDN”T!

 . . . Santana positions herself squarely in front of Karofsky, and begins to tell him, once and for all, how things are going to be, from now on. 

 “See, here’s whats gonna go down. Two choices, you stay here, and I crack one of your nuts, right or left, that’s your choice. Or you walk away, and live to be a douchebag, another day. And, also, I have razorblades in my hair. Mmm-hmmm.  Tons, all up in there,” monologues Santana, in a moment that is positively FILLED with Awesome!

“If I wasn’t gay and secretly in love with Kurt, I’d be SO attracted to you, right now!”

What’s better, after hearing Santana’s not necessarily idle threats, Karofsky ACTUALLY walks away! 

 

(Little do these two individuals know just how much in common they actually have with one another!)

Symbolism and foreshadowing aside, it was really nice to see Santana come to Kurt’s aid, the way she did this week.  It shows fans just how far her character has come from the one-note villainess she once was, back in early Season 1 . . .

Speaking of characters who have come far . . .

Rachel teaches Mercedes the TRUE meaning of DIVA . . .

Of all the members of New Directions, perhaps, no character has been more outspoken about feeling neglected than Mercedes.  And yet, as Lauren Zizes perceptively points out, though she may gripe and complain EXTREMELY OFTEN, Mercedes will ALWAYS inevitably cede the spotlight to Rachel.  So, Lauren comes up with this ridiculous plan for Mercedes to ask for all these STUPID DIVA REQUESTS (A puppy to wipe her face on?  Being carried out on stage in a Lady Gaga-inspired egg?), so that her Glee club mates know that she’s important.

Oddly enough, for a little while, anyway, this dumb ass plan seems to work, with Rachel Finn and Quinn rushing around like crazy to fulfill all of Mercedes whimsical desires . . .

But when Mercedes refuses to perform at the Benefit, it is Rachel who follows her into the parking lot in the rain and stabs her to death sets her straight . . .

“Diva demands don’t make you famous,” explains Rachel (and she would KNOW!).  “Having talent does!”

“So, why are you a bigger star than ME!”  Mercedes whines.

“Because the writers always give ME all the big solos and romantic storylines.  “Because I care more about being famous, than about being liked.  Everyone LIKES you,” Rachel explains, “Except for NOW, because NOW you are being a TOTAL ASSHOLE!” 

Ultimately, Rachel concedes the closing number at the benefit to Mercedes, who sings her idol Aretha Franklin’s “Ain’t No Way,” to an adoring crowd.  (OK, so have we just TOTALLY dispatched with the theme of “neglected artists” now?  First ADELE, and now, ARETHA?  Who’s next, U2?  The Beatles?)

Of all people, Glee club nemesis, Sandy Ryerson, is SO touched by Mercedes performance, that he conveniently decides to defect from the Legion of Doom, and give all the money from his illegal drug sales to the Glee club and the Academic Decathaletes!

The random guest star has been REDEEMED!  HOORAY!  (It’s just too bad no one can redeem that outfit he’s wearing.  Because that thing is HIDEOUS!)

Now, with Dustin and Sandy having totally FAILED at breaking up the Glee club, it’s up to Sue and Terri to finish what they started.    *Sigh*  Here we go again . . .

Oh, and did I mention that the “McKinley Smarty Pants,” led by Brittany (and her bizarrely Rainman-esque knowledge of cat diseases) went on to win the Academic Decathalon, thanks to the MOST RANDOM GAMESHOW CATEGORY EVER? 

Oh, Holly Holiday . . . you and your WEIRD costumes . . . and your bizarre weekly historical tidbits . . . about women with Man-Hands who Loved Hitler!  Now that you are really gone, I may actually end up missing you, after all!

[www.juliekushner.com]

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How Klaus Became the NEW Voldemort!- A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “Know Thy Enemy”

Damon:  “So, you’re KLAUS, now?  WTF Alaric!  I thought we were supposed to bros?  Do the words ‘Team Badass’ mean NOTHING to you?”

Alaric:  “Ummmm .  . . yeah . . . sorry about that.  But, hey!  At least I won’t be forcing you to hang out with my Boring Ass Girlfriend, anymore!”

Damon:  “True . . .”

OK, so remember THIS GUY?

“Dammit Harry Potter!  If I was on The Vampire Diaries, they would  have made me HOT . . . or, at least, given me a nose.”

Well, then you know how, in the first few Harry Potter books and films, “Big Bad” Voldemort never actually MADE an appearance.  He just hypnotized all these random folks to do his bidding, while he skulked around town, in search of a new face.  (Honestly, can you BLAME him?  I mean LOOK at the guy?)   

That’s kind of what Klaus has become on The Vampire Diaries.  Everybody talks about him.  Some folks even work for him.  But nobody seems to actually know what he looks like unless they read the spoilers.

In related news, Alaric Saltzman has officially become AWESOME once again . . .

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“AlarKlaus?”

He is also randomly sporting a bizarre new voice and accent, that makes him kind of sound like Yoda . . .

“Words . . . I speak.  Understand them . . . you will not.”

Oh, and in case I didn’t mention it before, THE LONG HIATUS IS OVER!  THE VAMPIRE DIARIES ARE BACK, FOR GOOD!

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Let’s get on with that recap, shall we?

Breaking News:   Useless Aunt Jenna comes face-to-face with an Evil Vampire . . . and actually DOESN’T invite her inside the house!

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There’s a first time for everything!

The episode begins literally right where we left, off a few months back, with Isobel (who’s such a RIDICULOUSLY awful mother, she makes that corpse in the basement at the end of Psycho look positively maternal, by comparison) arriving on Elena’s doorstep.  This makes things incredibly awkward for Useless Aunt Jenna, who, in the past few seconds, has just learned the following:  (1) her boyfriend’s wife is not quite as DEAD as he made her out to be; (2) that undead b*tch gave birth to Elena; and (3) everybody in Mystic Falls, except for Jenna, herself, already seemed to know this.  Needless to say, Jenna has had better days . . .

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“Wow, my character hasn’t done this much emoting on screen since . . . well . . . ever!”

Being the “rational and mature” guardian that Useless Aunt Jenna is, she responds to this Unwelcome Home Invasion by . . . throwing a temper tantrum, and disappearing for the rest of the episode.  (You’ve really gotta love all the stellar examples of parenting on this show.  It’s no wonder, everybody runs around, throwing eachother into walls, and biting one another!  It’s like Lord of the Flies on this show!)

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“SNIFF . . . now, I’m never going to get to see Alaric’s Chunky Monkey AGAIN!”

Speaking of Alaric, he stopped by the Gilbert House to (1) apologize to Useless Aunt Jenna for being a Terrible Boyfriend . . . and (2)  to do something us TVD Fans have been wanting to do, ourselves, since Season 1 . . . PUNCH Uncle / Father John in the FACE!

An image that has resulted in the destruction of many television screens . . . due to objects being thrown at them . . .

Meanwhile, over at La Casa de Rich and Awesome . . .

Kat Plays for Both Teams (in more ways than one)

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Katherine tells the Salvatore Brothers that, despite having played for Team Smug Asshole (a.k.a. Isobel and Uncle / Father John) for the past few episodes, she is now “TOTALLY” batting for our Salvatore Scooby Gang.  The CunningVamp promises to do whatever it takes to help those Sexy Salvatores save Elena, so long as that means offing Santa Klaus.  Of course, no matter how many times Katherine dances around the living room, like a girl who really has to peepreparing for a strip tease,  neither vampire brother particularly seems to trust her.

As it turns out, the brothers’ suspicions are well-founded!  Just a few scenes later, we find Kat encountering Isobel at the “Safe House” the latter supposedly purchased for Elena.   (“It’s the nicest foreclosure on the block,” Isobel notes proudly, in TVD’s first ever, Timely Recession Reference.)

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At first, Kat attacks Isobel, by . . .  throwing her up against the wall.  SURPRISE!  (I’m beginning to think this is some form of Bizarre Vampire Greeting, considering how often it’s done on the show.)  Soon after, the pair are being all flirty and seductive with eachother.  There’s definitely this odd sapphic chemistry between them.  In fact, watching Katherine and Isobel interact, I can’t help but wonder if these two have ever “known one another in the biblical sense,” if you catch my drift . . .

“Yeah, thanks for giving me Crabs, last time you were here!  That was fun!”

The other odd thing I noticed about Isobel, is that, ever since she’s returned to Mystic Falls, she has lost all emotional affect in her voice.  Every line she utters is delivered in this painfully dull monotone kind of like James Franco hosting the Oscars.  Of course, in hindsight, this noticeable change in Isobel’s personality (assuming she has one!) actually makes a lot of sense to her character’s particular plotline.  But initially, I must admit, I attributed it to bad acting.  (Sorry Mia Kirshner!)

“Don’t worry, I ain’t mad at ya!  (I’ll just eat you in your sleep.)”

While Isobel and Katherine chat, we learn that Katherine, at Isobel’s urging, is actually planning to cut some kind of deal with Klaus, in which her own life will be spared, in return for her turning over to him the Moonstone  . . . and Elena.

(We also learn that Isobel has a nickname for Useless Aunt Jenna . . .  “Auntie Vanilla “. . . I like it . . . but I still think “Useless Aunt Jenna” is better.  Just sayin’!)

Later, while Damon and Stefan are out playing Save Elena Games, Katherine begins ransacking La Casa de Rich and Awesome, in search of the Mysterious Moonstone.  Of course, she’s not averse to helping herself to a few of the boys’ OTHER possessions, while she’s looking . . .

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After searching nearly the entire house, Kat heads to the bathroom to wash her hands.  It is there that she locates the Moonstone, which has been hidden by Damon (who always said the darn thing looked like “soap, “anyway) in the Biggest Soap Dish Ever!

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Now, I know a lot of TVD viewers out there were understandably annoyed at the USUALLY brilliant Damon, for picking such a seemingly lame hiding place for such an important object.  Many of you might have even wondered why Damon, an admittedly “manly man” keeps so many Fancy Girly Hand Soaps in his bathroom, in the first place!  The answer to the second inquiry is quite simple, actually:  Damon REALLY likes getting clean . . .

As for why Damon chose the Soap Dish as the Moonstone’s Hiding Place, I’d have to say, the writers “compelled” him to do it, as a gift to US!   Because, think about it, had Damon NOT hidden the Moonstone in the soap dish, we would not have been treated to THIS . . .

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“GRRRRR . . . Wearing clothing makes me SO MAD!” 

Or this . . .

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“GRRR . . . Girly Soaps make me SO MAD!”

I rest my case.  Speaking of the Sexiest Salvatore. . .

Damon meets the ONLY women on the PLANET who don’t want him in their house!  (Of course, they are DEAD . . . and have no taste.)

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Just so you know, Damon . . . MY DOOR is ALWAYS OPEN!

Damon spends a large chunk of the episode hanging out with Witchy Bonnie and Mini Gilbert.  NOOOOOOO!  Hang out with ELENA, DAMON!  YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO BE HANGING OUT WITH ELENA!

A witch, a vampire, and a Gilbert walk into a house . . . I think I once heard a really bad joke that started like this . . .

You see, through his many years of trying to rescue Katherine from the tomb she wasn’t in . . . , Damon learned the location of the house where all the Mystic Falls witches were burned alive, back in 1864.  If Bonnie can harness the power of these witches, she can kill Klaus.  So, Bonnie, Jeremy and Damon, pick up a spell book from a probably VERY RANK- smelling Jonas’ house . . .

(BTW, I love how DEAD LUKA has been rotting away on the floor of that apartment for MONTHS, and nobody seems to care!)

 . . . and head to the all-powerful Witch Burning Site.

“Hi, honeys . . . we’re HOME!”

As it turns out, three is DEFINITELY a crowd, at the Dead Witch Bed and Breakfast.  And soon after Damon enters the house, strange things start happening to him. (Unfortunately, none of those “strange things” involve his clothing magically disappearing from his body.)

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First, Damon finds himself glued to the floor.  Then, his Sunscreen Ring suddenly stops working, and he gets the WORST SUNBURN EVER!  Wisely, Damon decides to leave the house before things get “too intense.”

Alone in Witchland, Bonnie and Jeremy start preparing to perform the “I see dead people . . . and take all their powers” spell.   While Bonnie mumbles and chants gibberish, the witches start whispering something in her ear. 

“Pssst, you’re boyfriend is REALLY HOT.  Think he’d mind if we all had Hot Invisible Poltergeist Sex with him?”

Of course, Nosy Jeremy wants to know what the witches are saying, but Bonnie won’t tell him (which means she probably agreed to the Hot Poltergeist Sex Thing).  Suddenly, Bonnie is screaming in pain.  And Jeremy gets ghost f*&ked thrown into a wall for the 85,000th time this season . . .

“I’m starting to think that the universe is trying to tell me something . . .”

Then, it’s all over.  And Bonnie and Jeremy celebrate, by making out again . . .

Outside, the house, Bonnie shows off her  newfound witchy powers, by making Mystic Falls have Really Bad Weather for 15 seconds . . .

I would have made myself a Super Model / Lottery Winner, instead . . . but that’s just me.

After doing some research, Jeremy learns that using all those witchy powers necessary to kill Klaus, will result in Bonnie’s death as well . . .

“ANOTHER Dead Girlfriend?  Are you friggin kidding me, with this?  That’s IT!  Next season, I’m totally turning gay!”

Speaking of soon-to-be-dead folks . . .

Isobel’s Big Plan

While in town, Isobel confronts Alaric, tells him how much she used to love him  . . . and has her Massively Large Warlock Body Guard, Jedi Mind Trick him into unconsciousness.  (Did you ever notice how EVERY vampire has their own witch on this show?  The Salvatores have Bonnie.  Elijah had Jonas.  Klaus has this nameless Sumo Warlock.  Is there some sort of a Witches R’ Us store in Mystic Falls that I don’t know about?) 

Isobel then heads to the Lockwood Mansion, where Elena is accepting some random award on behalf of her OTHER Dead Mom.  Once there, Izzie seemingly kills Uncle / Father John, by biting him in the neck and tossing him down a flight of steps.  (Geez, punched in the face, bitten, AND thrown down steps.  It’s not really this guy’s episode, is it?)

“At least I got to keep my balls all my fingers, this time!”

While, the crowd is tending to Uncle / Father John . . .

Katherine is “tending to” Elena . . .

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Moments later, Stefan finds “Elena,” and takes her out of the mansion.  The problem is, The REAL Elena is gone!

When Stefan finally figures out what has happened, Katherine, looking remarkably like Elena, stabs Stefan with a syringe (filled with what exactly?  It was never explained . . ) and tosses him into her “bush.”  Sexual symbolism abounds . . .

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And in this moment, Delena fans across the world, simultaneously updated their Tumblrs and Facebook pages, with the best thing that has happened to their SHIP (at least symbolically), since Damon told Elena he loved her in “Rose.” 

Then Damon magically appears!

After assuring the masses at La Casa de Lockwood that Uncle / Father John is unfortunately not dead yet, Damon proceeds to entertain them, by performing  a Ventroliquist and Dummy Act with Elena’s Bio Dad’s limp body . . .

“Now, watch me make him dance!”

Back at The Nicest Foreclosure in Town, Katherine gets  . . . kidnapped by . . . Sumo Warlock?

Meanwhile, Isobel drives an unconscious Elena to a grave site, that I had assumed would be for Elena’s adopted parents, but was actually Isobel’s own . . .

Isobel explains to Elena how no one is actually buried there (DUH!).  However, a part of Isobel really did die, when she became a vampire.  Isobel wistfully wishes that Elena got to meet the nice (probably dull) Isobel, who studied supernatural things, regularly boned Alaric, not to mention Uncle / Father John (Maybe she wasn’t so dull, after all!), and genuinely loved her bastard child daughter.  Then, Isobel gets a call from Sumo Warlock.  He tells Isobel, that her “job” is done, and Elena is free to go! 

Wait . . . huh?

Apparently, Klaus compelled Isobel to do ALL the evil crap she did during this episode!

OK . . . so let me get this straight . . . Klaus compelled Isobel to (1) get Katherine to find the Moonstone; (2) have Alaric kidnapped; (3) push John down the steps; (4) kidnap Elena; AND (5) betray Katherine, so that SHE could get kidnapped, while carrying the Moonstone. 

(Does being compelled give you, like, Super Human Memory or something?  Because that seems like a WHOLE LOT to remember to do  . . .   even for a non-Hypnotized Zombie Type . . .)

But at least now we know why Isobel seems to have lost her ability to emote, since last season!  She’s been a Klaus’ Toy Robot this entire episode!

Speaking of rotting and decayed flesh, Isobel tells Elena that she’s “sorry she was such a disappointment to [her].” The vampiress then rips off her Sunscreen Necklace (I thought they only came in rings!) and “tragically” meets the sun, a la Godric in True Blood.  The difference, of course, is that Godric made killing yourself, look pretty darn awesome, while Isobel, quite honestly, looked a bit rough, during her Dramatic Death Scene . . .)

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“I’m FLYING!”

Oh, HONEY!  You really need to moisturize!

“Isobel Fleming . . . consider yourself OWNED!”

Sayonara, Mama Isobel!  It’s been . . . REAL . . . interesting. 

(For those of you keeping score, Elena has now experienced, FIRSTHAND, the death of THREE PARENTS!  How many YEARS of therapy, do you think it’s going to take to erase THAT?)

Meanwhile, in Not-So-Clueless-Anymore Matt News . . .

And you thought TYLER did Caroline dirty! (a.k.a The Forwood is MUCH BETTER than Caratt Plotline)

“I have three things to tell you, Mama Forbes.  (1) I think your daughter is an Evil Bloodsucking Vampire; (2) she probably killed my Slutty Sister; (3) I’m SUPER hot for Cougars in Uniform . . .”

So, throughout most of the episode, Poor Caroline is trying to get in touch with Matt, who has been avoiding her, ever since she SAVED HIS LIFE at the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls.  (Way to be grateful, DOUCHE!)  When Caroline, inappropriately, asks Tyler’s mom, where Matt might be, the latter reminds Caroline that HER SON, TYLER is also missing, and that Forwood belong together, so Caroline should really get her priorities straight! 

(Oh, by the way, how weird is it that Snooty Mama Lockwood is officially, by default, the BEST MOM ON THIS SHOW?)

Outside, the Lockwood Mansion, Matt accosts Caroline’s mom, with crazy talk of vampires and supernatural beings having something to do with the death of his sister.  Later, Matt arrives at Caroline’s house, with some BIG FAT LIE story about Mama Forbes bringing him there to “cool down.” after his “outburst.”  Matt’s Big Monologue about how alone he feels, being the only Clueless Human in a clearly Supernatural World . . .

 . . .  is remarkably reminiscent of Tyler’s admission to Caroline (which also took place at her house) about how alone he felt, having to cope with the Werewolf Curse, all by himself . . .

Except . . . you know . . . Tyler’s speeched rocked, and Matt’s . . . well . . . didn’t.

Anywhoo . . . Matt claims that he wants to know everything about Vicki’s death, and what’s going on in Mystic Falls.   So, Caroline gives him these . . .

Just kidding!  But Caroline REALLY does seem to have told Matt everything that’s been happening on the show, at least, everything that has happened since she became totally awesome a vampire.  (I wonder how long THAT took!) 

Then, Cry Baby Matt tells Caroline that he’d rather not know all this Scary Stuff. WUSS! So, he asks Caroline to compel him to forget everything he just BEGGED her to tell him, moments earlier.  (Way to WASTE CAROLINE’S TIME, MATT DONVA$$HOLE!)  Reluctantly, Caroline obliges . . .

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“Don’t worry, Matt. Vampires and werewolves don’t really exist . . . And Santa Claus is real . . . and so is the Tooth Fairy . . . and the Easter Bunny.  Also, there is no war, or poverty, or hunger.  The world is a Perfect Place.”

The Big Twist comes just seconds later, when Matt hops into  . . . Mama Forbes car and starts boning her reveals everything.  “I did what you said.  I drank that vervain stuff, got [Caroline] to tell me everything, and then told her to make me forget it.  I think she DIED,” Matt whines to Caroline’s mom.  Caroline’s mom tearfully agrees . . .

Well YEAH, GENIUSES!  She DID die!  That’s what makes her a VAMMMM-PIRRRRRRE!

Honestly, I don’t know who made me madder in this scene:  (1) Matt, for manipulating Caroline, and then (AFTER hearing her obviously HEARTFELT, and extremely guilt-ridden, confession about what’s been going on in Mystic Falls) STILL not believing her to be the same sweet girl he supposedly fell in love with not too long ago . . . just because she happens to drink a little blood, every once in a while . . .

“That’s SO racist!”

 . . . or (2) Caroline’s OWN mother, for so easily thinking the worst of her daughter, just on the say-so of Some Dumb Kid She Used to Date.

You know, what?  Why choose?  Here’s what I have to say to BOTH of them!

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Come back soon, Tyler!  Your girl, Caroline, NEEDS YOU!

In MUCH Nicer Boy News . . .

Team Salvatore FOR THE WIN (for now . . .)!

How’s this for a rockin’ present?  Upon realizing that EVERY BAD GUY IN THE WORLD has access to the Gilbert home  (Thanks, AUNT JENNA!), and that Elena needs a place where she can be safe, Damon and Stefan decide to DEED LA CASA DE RICH AND AWESOME OVER TO HER . .  . OMG!  They gave her an ENTIRE MANSION!  Holy CRAP!

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Later, the two brothers bond over booze, and the knowledge that, because THEY are the only ones who know that Bonnie has her witchy powers back, she is  literally their Secret Weapon to Kill Klaus . . .

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Speaking of Klaus, Katherine wakes up on the floor of Sumo Warlock’s hideaway to hear him performing weird creepy chants over an unconscious Alaric’s head.  Then, “Alaric” wakes up . . . and he’s got this disturbingly evil look in his eyes, which makes me think Sumo Dude programmed him to be some Mindless Killing Machine.  But Nu-Alaric is something WAY COOLER THAN THAT! 

“Lovely Katarina.  I’ve missed you,” he warbles in that weird new accent of his. 

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“Klaus?”  A dumbfounded, and clearly terrified, Katherine replies.  (And . . . that’s when I peed my pants . . .)

Next week’s episode promises a WHOLE LOT MORE AlarKlaus, not to mention some funky costumes, and a TON of DELENA DANCING!

You can check out the kick ass extended promo for “The Last Dance” here:

Is it Thursday yet? 8)

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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The Parent Entrapment – A Recap of Gossip Girl’s “Empire of the Son”

“So, when you get to jail, Lily, definitely tell Bernie Madoff I said ‘Hi.’  He never did pay me back that money I lent him . . .”

Well, this was a rather adult episode of Gossip Girl, right?  And no, unfortunately, I don’t mean that in a fun, NC-17 rating, kind of way.  Instead, I’m talking about the fact that LITERALLY everybody and their MOTHER got their own storyline tonight.  Heck, even BART BASS got thrown a bone from the Plotline Department . . . and he’s been dead for ALMOST TWO SEASONS!

 . . . praying that my Estate gets royalties for this . . .

Let’s review, shall we?

Happy Days are Here Again?

After a few pretty dark episodes, things actually seem to get off to a rather pleasant start, in “Empire of the Son.”  Chuck Bass, who, as you recall, was, just last week, in danger of losing Bass Industries to the odious Russell Thorpe, is now presumably “back on top.”  This, of course, is due to the deal he made with that Random Dude who agreed to buy an interest in his company, last week, so that Thorpe couldn’t destroy it. 

Now, Chuck, of all people, is being asked to ring the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange.  To me, this is pretty darn impressive, especially considering that, in four seasons, I never knew the character to wake up before Noon . . .

 . . . unless, of course, he had “special company” in his bed with him. 😉

Speaking of Blair . . . she’s doing pretty well too!  Though our Queen B was seen, just last week, getting FIRED, FAILING exams, eating PIZZA, and drowning her sorrows in old ass movies, screened in a Brookyln apartment, now our girl looks positively radiant.  She’s being nice to everybody!  She’s giving Serena advice about her Bland Boring Boyfriend Ben. 

Blair attributes this new sense of well being to a “Fast and Cleanse,” in which she has recently engaged.  On this, I call BS, from personal experience.  After all, the last time I, personally, “cleansed and fasted,” I literally almost killed about five people, out of sheer HUNGER . . . 

Yeah . . . you should really consider EATING, stat, if you care at all about your family and friends . . .

But, I’m not the only one who is doubtful as to the true source of Blair’s newfound happiness.  Blair’s sidekick, Dorota, is suspicious as well .  . .

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You know who else is doing well?  Nate.  After lord knows how many weeks just spent staring at the camera, and looking pretty, Boy Toy ACTUALLY has a sort-of storyline . . . plus, he’s getting laid . . .

Yes, boys and girls.  Things move fast in the Upper East Side.  And Raina, who was formerly Chuck’s flavor of the week, is now being slurped up by Pimp Daddy Archibald, right beneath Chuck’s nose!  Unlike Chuck and Raina, these two ACTUALLY share a modicum of chemistry.  As a result, watching this new couple interact and swap spit — while not a particularly thrilling sight — doesn’t immediately make me want to vomit.  So, that’s a start! 

“Thank you, writers, for FINALLY realizing that I am WAY TOO HOT to be perpetually celibate, on this show.  Now, if I could just get you to stop dressing me in these ridiculously dorky sweaters . . .”

Now, despite appearances, all is not necessarily rosy in the Upper East Side.  Serena is still macking with that Wet Blanket Ben . . .

But, hey!  At least this is causing her to ignore the stalkerish repeated phone calls and text messages from one ridiculously annoying,  Vanessa Abrams . . .

So, it seems the entire cast of GG (except for Vanessa) is happy, which is exactly how us fans like it.   And what’s a “happy” GG episode without a PARTY, right?  I mean what would all these disgustingly rich, and apparently alcoholic, Manhattanites, do with their lives, if they weren’t perpetually attending one of Chuck’s nightly “I Never Work, But Inexplicably Have Unlimited Income” Galas?

“And now let us call this meeting of the Upper East Side Chapter of Alcoholics Anonymous to order .  . . Cheers!”

But, of course, this is Gossip Girl.  And happy days can’t stay happy, for long . . .

You are ALL BUSTED!

“Oh, Russell . . . honey . . . we NEED to do something about your office.  Since when did it become OK for a high-powered executive to conduct business at a COFFEE TABLE?  I mean, you’re sitting so low to the ground, you might as well be on the floor!  And what exactly is that fire place doing behind you, anyway?  Is that your idea of a shredder?”  – Set Department FAIL!

Things start to take a turn for the worse, when Chuck arrives at Thorpe’s office, to gloatingly invite Russell and Raina to his Pointless Party of the Week.  It is then, that Russell accidentally / on purpose lets it slip that his daughter is currently out boning Mini Captain Archibald . . .

“Well, DAMN!  Now, I’m glad I gave her an STD!  Enjoy those crabs, Natey-poo!”

But Russell’s got even more tricks up his sleeve.  He’s recently sent one of his minions off to the dry cleaners, in order to kindly “suggest” an outfit for Lily van der Woodsen to wear to Chuck’s party . . .

“Hey Lily, I hear orange is the new black . . .”

Elsewhere, Wet Blanket Ben has suddenly stopped returning Serena’s Booty Calls . . .

Oh, the humanity!

When Serena confronts Wet Blanket Ben at Dan’s apartment (where he is currently crashing), to find out what the heck is going on, she encounters a very scary sight, indeed . . .

It’s the EVIL WENCH, WHO BROUGHT WET BLANKET BEN AND PSYCHO STALKER JULIET INTO THE WORLD!!!!

Of course, Evil Wench is LESS THAN PLEASED that her son has formed a relationship with the woman whose family pretty much singlehandedly RUINED HIS CAREER, and possibly, his life . . . They also, coincidentally, sent her daughter, Psycho Stalker Juliet off the Deep End. Oops!

Meanwhile Blair, who is clearly ashamed of the fact that she used to spend her nights attending lavish parties and having sex with Chuck in limos, but now spends them watching Netflix films, washing dishes by hand, and eating (gasp) pizza, has been hiding her friendship with Dan from the Upper East Side masses.

But even BLAIR’s deception tactics are no match for The Mighty Dorota . . .

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Dorota started to notice things were amiss, when she spied a NOVA DOCUMENTARY in Blair’s netflix queue!  (Oh, Blair . . . we REALLY need to talk!)  But then, when she found a copy of Dan Humphrey’s New Yorker magazine on Blair’s bed, things suddenly became clear to her . . .

“OH HELLLLLLL NOOOOOO!”

At this point, I should probably mention that Dorota is the BIGGEST CHAIR FAN EVER!  (She’s also, I suspect, a Derena fan.)  So, of course, the usually Happy Housekeeper is EXTREMELY UNHAPPY about this most recent turn of events.  And she vows to put a stop to it ASAP.

“I caught you, Dan Dishpan-Handed!”

“You and Lonely Boy are having an AFFAIR,” shouts Dorota, her face a hilarious mixture of triumph, shock, and horrified disgust . . .

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“We have to tell Mr. Chuck and Serena!” Dorota continues, digging the knife a little deeper into Blair’s heart.

To prove to Dorota, once and for all, that there is nothing going on between her and Dan, Blair decides to stand Lonely Boy up.  So, she fails to meet him at their appointed destination for the day, and, instead, decides to go shopping with Dorota. 

 Meanwhile, Dan, who is similarly concerned that his dad, Rufus, will find out that he and Blair have been hanging out (Yeah . . . I don’t really get why the Dad would give two craps, either), ditches Blair too, in order to hang out with his Pops . . .

So, of course the two Date Ditchers have to end up running into one another, at a completely different location than where they originally planned to meet . . .

(Gotta love those Madcap GG Hijinx!)  “I knew you would be my SOCIAL DEATH!”  Blair exclaims to Dan later. 

Deciding it would be best if they came clean to everybody about their new friendship, before ANYBODY ELSE finds out about it, Dan and Blair come up with a plan.  They decide to leak a blast to Gossip Girl about an “important announcement.”  Then, at Chuck’s party, they will reveal that the “important announcement” was actually a really LAME one, about the two of them sometimes watching movies together. 

Talk about a Bait and Switch!  I know, if I was Gossip Girl, I’d certainly want MY money back . . .

“Hey, at least the “important news” didn’t have anything to do with VANESSA!”

Baby Did a Bad, Bad Thing . . .

Back in Serena Land, Blondie is trying her hardest to win over Ben’s Evil Wench mom, by treating her to pizza.  (Seriously?  Since when did so many people eat PIZZA on Gossip Girl?)

Unfortunately, since Evil Wench is lactose intolerant (not to mention, Serena intolerant), the meal doesn’t exactly go well.  To make matters worse, Serena conveniently overhears Evil Wench telling Ben that he should sell out the van der Woodsens to save his teaching career.  This way, he can fall in love with, and possibly impregnate MORE 16 year olds  YAY!

Speaking of the whole Pedo Ben Fiasco, Serena’s mom arranges a meeting with Chuck to tell him about the “Orange Jumpsuit Affair.” 

Apparently, Lily (rightly, as it turns out) fears that Russell will try to blackmail her into ceding Bass Industries over to him, by threatening to reveal information regarding Lily’s illegal behavior, with respect to the aforementioned matter.  (Geez!  Dude just doesn’t give up, does he?)  Chuck promises to investigate (1) who leaked that information to Russell *cough Drug Dealing Damien cough;” and (2) whether the Real Estate Mogul has ACTUAL PROOF of Lily’s perjury, or is merely bluffing.

Lily, of course, suspects Wet Blanket Ben of leaking the intel.  And when ANNOYING VANESSA . . .

AGAIN . . . I REPEAT . . .

 . . . barges into La Casa de van der Woodsen, to inform Lily that Ben had Nate’s dad beat up in jail, her suspicions seem justified.  When Lily confronts Serena with this information, Blondie initially refuses to believe its true.  The problem, of course, is that the AFFIDAVIT, which is proof of Lily’s guilt in the Pedo Ben Affair, has suddenly gone missing.  And, aside from Serena, Wet Blanket Ben is the only one who knew where it was hidden .  . .

Serena vows to talk to Ben at Chuck’s party, hoping she can get him to reconsider his decision.

Elsewhere on the Upper East Side, Chuck .  . .

 . . . pretends to care that Nate and Raina are porking, when we ALL know, he only truly has eyes for one girl . . .

But, aside from this faux- confrontation, Chuck has REAL business to attend to, with Raina.  Specifically, he wants to warn her about what an ASSHAT her dad is!  When Raina refuses to believe Chuck’s statements, the latter arranges for Raina to learn of her dad’s Asshatedness on her OWN.  Chuck figures that Raina’s disapproval of Russell, might influence the Douchebag to drop his whole blackmail scheme, and simply admit defeat, like a Good Little Guest Star . . .

All is Revealed . . .

As is typical of GG episodes, everything comes to head at the Big Party of the Week.  There, Serena confronts Wet Blanket Ben . . .

“Sometimes, I even bore MYSELF  . . .”

 . . . who admits to beating up Nate’s dad (who, let’s face it, no one really likes, anway) . . .

“Hey WTF!  EVERYBODY LIKES ME!  I’m Captain Hook-ed on Drugs, for crying out loud!”

However, the Wet Blanket SWEARS on his Mama, that he didn’t steal Lily’s forged affidavit.  Oh, but he did tell his Evil Wench Mom where it was hidden . . .

“WHAT A MORON!  You’re seriously boning THAT GUY, when you could be boning ME,  Serena . . .What is WRONG WITH YOU?”

So, here’s how it all went down . . . Apparently, after Drug Dealing Damien approached Thorpe at the end of last week’s episode, about Lily’s criminal acts, Thorpe took it upon himself to contact Wet Blanket Ben’s MOM.  She then used Wet Blanket Ben to figure out how to steal the incriminating affidavit, and give it to Thorpe.  How unnecessarily convuluted interesting.

Later, as planned by Chuck, Russell blackmails Lily, with Raina listening in the next room.  To say she is not pleased with her daddy, is the UNDERSTATEMENT OF THE CENTURY . . .

“This is SO STRESSFUL!  I could really use some more weed, now!”

They were RIGHT ABOUT YOU,” Raina exclaims to Daddy Not-So-Dearest, before storming off, with Nate hot on her heels, hoping to heaven that this won’t interfere with his chances of getting boned tonight . . .

But what Chuck doesn’t count on is Russell being SUCH a big Asshat, that he DOESN’T even go after his own daughter!  He STILL wants to blackmail Lily!  The problem, however, is that he CAN’T!  Lily has already decided to turn herself in to the police, and issue a full confession. 

Though this may inevitably land her in jail, this sort-of heroic, if long overdue, act, will, not only singlehandedly save Bass Industries until the next Guest Star comes to f*ck with it, it also will inevitably prevent the company from being blackmailed for the 84,532nd time this season.  GOOD RIDDENS TO THAT!

Bart Bass-tard Strikes Again . . . and other Sort-of Cliffhangers

After Lily leaves to go turn herself in, Chuck and Russell decide to have a little heart-to-heart. 

In the lamest, most useless and least relevant biggest twist of the evening, Russell reveals that the reason he was dead set on ruining Bass Industries, was not because Bart Bass stole Lily from him, but because Bart basically KILLED RUSSELL’S FIRST WIFE!  Remember a few seasons back, how Bart was implicated in setting fire to one of his hotel buildings, for insurance money, and for killing some Security Guard, in the process.  (No?  That’s OK . . . I barely remember it myself.) 

Well, apparently, RUSSELL’S WIFE was also in the building at the time. (Wait . . . nobody finds it weird that the SECURITY GUARD’S death was publicized, but the wife of a famous hotel mogul’s was NOT?  Am I missing something here?)  Upon hearing that his dad was JUST AS BIG OF AN ASSHOLE AS HE ALWAYS THOUGHT HE WAS . . . just a slightly more murderous one, Chuck goes on an alcoholic bender . . .

YAY BOOZE!

This Bender, ironically, wakes Chuck up from the STUPOR he’s been in for at least four episodes now!  “I need to find Blair!  She’s the only one who understands what I’m going through right now,” a slightly inebriated Chuck tells Serena, before rushing off to find his lady love. 

Well, it’s about DAMN TIME! 

(Note: The fact that Chuck’s Daddy Issues are what FINALLY prompted him to remember how dear Blair is to him, is a nice bit of continuity on the writers’ part.  One can’t deny that, each time, Bart’s misdeeds (or his untimely death), have sent Chuck into a downward spiral, it was BLAIR who nursed him back to himself, with her strength, and unflagging belief in Chuck’s strength and inner goodness.

Speaking of BAD DAD’S and GOOD “SHIPS”, Russell Thorpe FINALLY decides to leave town, and go back to the Windy City from whence he came . . .

SAYONAR,  SUCKA!

But it’s Nate — who is no stranger to the many ways in which BAD DADS can disappoint you, and f*&k you up for life, himself  — who ultimately convinces Raina to wish her Papa farewell, and forgive him for being such an Evil Asshat and Annoying Special Guest Star .  . .

The Hills are Alive, with the Sound of Natey-pooooooo!

Nate and Raina may still be going strong.  But you know who isn’t?  Serena and Wet Blanket Ben.

This DOOFUS also FINALLY leaves town (Well, would you look at that?  We killed two birds with one stone . . . now if we could only get Manessa to leave, for good).

Wet Blanket’s reasons for departing NYC are as follows: (1) Lily demanded, as a condition of her confession, that all charges against him be expunged; and (2) he’s become a VERY BAD MAN . . . at least as far as he is concerned.  Serena is momentarily devastated by the loss of her Flavor of the Week.  So, she tells him she truly believes that he is the same pedophile man she fell in love with.  She also hopes that Ben will call her again, once he gets some of that nonexistent confidence back.

Umm . . . Ben, don’t call us, we’ll call you . . . Mmmmm Kay?

So, that’s two people who left town.  You know who came BACK to the Upper East Side though?   THIS GUY . . .

Watch out RUFUS!  With Lily awaiting trial for her crimes, her Bad Ass Mo Fo criminal of an ex-husband (He made her believe she had CANCER, just to get into her pants, for crying out loud!) might be JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED!

But the real cliffhanger of the episode comes in the final moments.  If you recall, Dan and Blair planned to “come out” as friends at Chuck’s party.  But then, all this Lily and Russell and Ben Crap happened.  So, they decided it probably wasn’t the right time to reveal this not-all-that-important information to “Manhattan’s Elite” . . .

Ultimately, the pair decide to sacrifice their newfound friendship, and focus, instead, on their friends’ impending crises and emotional needs. 

But that night, Dan refuses to return to Brooklyn.  Apparently, he is having second thoughts about his and Blair’s mutual decision to “break up their friendship.”  And so, he arrives at Blair’s house, with questions looming in his mind, as to why the two have felt the need to hide their movie-going, pizza-eating, and dish-washing “thing,” for so long.  He wonders whether something more is there between them.  He wants to kiss Blair just once to find out.

Blair tentatively agrees to the kiss.  Then, Dan, being the general slow-starter / wishy washy and Charlie Brown-like person he can sometimes be, hesitates, before going in for the Big Slobber.  So, Blair, wanting to get this over with, grabs her Brookyln Bud, and pulls him in for a smooch.  The screen then freeze frames like THIS . . .

And, before you know it, we have Gossip Girl saying “XOXO” for the last time, before the show goes into a SIX WEEK HIATUS . . .

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!”

Man, this sucks!  I really thought we’d get to see Chuck make a play for Blair’s heart, before the Final XOXO.  Unfortunately, this did not happen . . . yet.  The show’s upcoming promos offer some promise, however . . .

See you in April, Upper East Siders!  Until then, XOXO!

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Things That Make You Go “HUH?” – A Recap of Pretty Little Liars’ “The New Normal”

This week on Pretty Little Liars new relationships sizzled, arguments fizzled, new enemies presented themselves, and an old, terrifying, villain reemerged in Rosewood . . .

Yes, boys and girls, “Blind” Jenna’s CANE OF DESTRUCTION has returned, after enjoying a long and restful vacation in HELL!  And when “Blind” Jenna has her CANE OF DESTRUCTION by her side, we know that evil is truly afoot.  Be afraid, my Pretties.  Be VERY AFRAID!

Hanna’s “Infestation Problem”

So, Hanna and Caleb are continuing to play “house” in Hanna’s basement.   And Caleb is just having a fine old time.  After all, he’s living rent free, and having the Girl of his Dreams serve him breakfast in the morning, at no cost.  What could be better?

Caleb says he plans to leave, having received offers to leech off of OTHER families in Nebraska, or Nevada, or somewhere else that’s not Rosewood.  But we all know THAT’S not really going to happen — not when he’s coming closer, and closer to getting laid each week things are going so well for him here.

“Oh Hanna, would you mind getting me a towel?  I can’t find any here in the bathroom. because I’ve hidden them.  Did I mention, I REALLY, REALLY want you to see me naked?

Talk about a sweet deal!  Not only does Caleb get free room and board at Hanna’s house, Hanna has even kindly offered to wash his hat collection, which, let’s face it, was starting to smell like ass . . .

Sure, Hanna may have STARTED to wash the hat, so her mom wouldn’t realize that Caleb had left it in the kitchen that morning, but the result was the same, nonetheless.  Then, the next morning, the usually clever Hanna, gets the “bright” idea to hand Caleb his hat at school, SO ALL THE PLL’S CAN SEE HER DO IT.

GOTCHA, Secret Hat Sharers!

Now, don’t get me wrong.  There’s absolutely nothing wrong with a girl returning a hat to a boy.  But was it ABSOLUTELY necessary for Hanna to do this at school, when the boy lives IN HER BASEMENT?  I mean, did he really need the hat so badly, that this couldn’t have waited until he got home to wear it?  Is the bald spot really that noticeable, Caleb?

Nonetheless, the fact that Hanna and Caleb “hatted” eachother, ended up being a good thing.  You see, it prompted Aria, who’s a BIG FAN of Secret Inappropriate Relationships, to forgive Hanna for almost ruining her life, by nearly outing Aria and Fitz’s relationship to Aria’s mother.  You know . . . because no two PLL girls can stay angry at one another for more than half an episode, no matter what terrible things they do to one another . . .

“I’m glad we are friends again, Hanna.  Because I have some hats that could really use washing.  For example, that Where’s Waldo one I wore a few weeks back.”

Truth be told, Hanna is going to need all the friends she can get, now that her mom is being stalked by this CREEPO . . .

It all started when Hanna’s mom decided to return what was LEFT of the cash she had stolen from Dead Miss Potter’s safety deposit box.  Conveniently enough, before she could do it, some guy named James Leland, who to be Miss Potter’s only living relative, requested the contents of the box.  Remembering that Miss Potter had said that she had no living relatives Mommy wouldn’t have been stupid enough to snatch her cash, if she did Hanna’s mom asks this mysterious man for appropriate identification.  He provides it promptly.   And everything seems to check out.

Then Creepo Mr. Leland asks Hanna’s mom out on a date.   And since slutty Hanna’s mom would go out with a FERRET, if he asked nicely, she agrees.  That nigh,t the doorbell rings, and everyone assumes its Creepo Mr. Leland.  But it ends up being someone WAY more pleasant to look at . . .

 

Ever the pro at Breaking and Entering, Caleb wisely figures that if Hanna’s mom meets him first, she won’t be so surprised, when he knocks up Hanna if she ever sees him hanging around the house.  Hanna’s mom is concerned that Hanna seems to be rebounding from Sean, by having strange boys over at her house.  And yet, since Hanna’s mom has strange boys over at the house all the time, she really has no grounds to judge . . .

Strange Boy #1

When Creepo Leland actually arrives, it’s Caleb who first greets him.  “I’m the Guy Who Opens the Door,” snarks Caleb when Creeop Leland wants to know who the heck he is, if not a relative of Hanna’s mom.

Before they can leave for their date, Hanna’s mom has Mr. Leland sign a bank document.  This action prompts suspicion from Caleb because . . . wait for it . . . Mr. Leland USES A CHEAP PEN!

Because, clearly, anybody who uses a Blue Bic MUST be a serial killer, right?  After Hanna tells Caleb that Mr. Leland is supposedly an architect of some sort, Caleb astutely notes because he lived in an architect’s bathroom for a month once that architects tend to carry around nice pens.  Then Caleb takes it upon himself to do some background research on Mr. Leland.  And I begin to wonder whether he is the long lost brother Spencer and her Investigation Face never knew they had . . .

Now that you mention it, I do kind of see a resemblance . . .

What Caleb learns from his research is actually quite interesting.  As it turns out, the REAL James Leland WAS an architect, and he WAS related to Miss Potter.  But he was also MASSIVELY OLD, and is now MASSIVELY DEAD.  Hanna shares these findings with her mother, who blows them off, because “blowing things” is what she does best. 

But Hanna’s mom becomes suspicious of Creepo Mr. Leland too, when he (1) balks at the small amount of money leftover in Miss Potter’s account . . . almost as if he KNEW how much was supposed to be in there; (2) starts asking suspicious questions about who had access to the dead woman’s safety deposit box; and (3) seems unwilling to provide any information about where in “Syracuse” he supposedly does his banking . . .

Back at home, Hanna and Caleb share a sexy Almost Kiss Moment, before Caleb skulks back down to the basement to jerk off go to bed . . .

Moments later, there is a knock at the door.  Hanna answers it.  In doing so, she is greeted by what I think is the most HILARIOUS “A” taunt to date . . .

“Are you A?”  Asks the Funny Lookin’ Old Dude in the Weird Blue Jumper.  “Because I got a call from an A about an infestation in your basement?”

Haha!  Get it?   “A” just called Hanna’s new love interest a RODENT!  Fitz, apparently, thinks its funny too.

But be careful, Hanna!  If you keep eye f*&king Caleb, in public,  I suspect SOMEONE will see too it that you have a REAL infestation problem in your basement very soon . . .

“You better stop messing with my girl, Caleb.   Or I’ll stick my pet rat right up your ass!”

In the last few moments of the episode, SOMEONE leaves flowers on Miss Potter’s grave.  And I’m willing to bet that it’s NOT that Creepo Fake James Leland . . .

Could the FAKE Leland have MURDERED the Real Miss Potter for her money?  Does this storyline have ANYTHING to do with “A” or Ali’s death?  Only time will tell . . .

Aria’s Papa Don’t Teach

This week’s episode of PLL was a bit “parent-heavy.”  Don’t you think?  Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m all for stories about Hanna’s mom, because she’s a Dumb Slutty Felon, who amuses me.  And Emily’s interaction with her mother this week (more on that later) was truly touching.  But PLEASE PLL writers, let’s lay off on the Aria’s Parents’ Storylines, shall we? 

GO AWAY!

These two just bug the heck out of me.  And this is the THIRD week in a row, where their drama took up a major portion of the episode.  It all started with Aria’s mom DROOLING over Fitzy, as he singlehandedly saved the high school lunch room, from Paige’s Evil Father (more on that later). 

 (Apparently, the teachers eat lunch with the students at this school.  Now that HAS to suck for everybody involved.)

Fitzy then invites some of the teachers, Aria’s mom included, to go to some silent auction / book signing by an author that Aria’s mom secretly hates.  Aria’s mom agrees to attend the event because she really wants to get into Fitzy’s pants it’s for a good cause.

“Mrs. Montgomery, are you trying to seduce me?”

Cut to Aria’s parents roaming the halls of the school.  Aria’s mom wants Aria’s dad to meet Aria’s English teacher, Mr. Fitz, because their daughter is boning him because he is just SOOOOOOOO Dreamy.

“He’s smart, attractive, and sensitive,” coos Aria’s mom.

“Does he play the guitar too?”  Aria’s dad snarks.  (I swear, this is the only funny thing he’s said all season.)

So, of course, Aria’s dad immediately becomes convinced that Fitzy is screwing Aria’s mom.  So, when it comes time for the parent teacher conference, Aria’s dad is a TOTAL AND COMPLETE dick to Fitzy.

This rough treatment, of course, has Fitzy peeing in his pants, because he’s convinced that Aria’s dad hates him.  “Your dad hates me, or is crazy!”  Fitzy insists poutily.

  But Aria is not concerned.  “No ONE could hate my Fitzy!  IMPOSSIBLE!”  She assures him.  “And everyone already knows my dad’s crazy so . . .”

But then, when Aria actually questions her father, she learns, to her chagrin, that her dad DOES hate Fitzy.  “There’s just not a lot of depth there.  And he uses that boyish smile too much,” says Aria’s dad mopily.

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I have no idea what he’s talking about.

But when Aria explains that LOTS of teachers will be attending the event Aria’s mom is attending with Fitzy, and that’s it’s for a good cause, Papa Montgomery seems to change his tune about the English Teacher.  (Coincidentally, I’m not really sure what would piss Aria’s dad off more.  The idea of Fitzy boiking his wife, or his daughter?)

Anyway . . .

Aria and Fitzy are busy macking on the couch in Fitzy’s apartment, one evening . . .

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 . . . when Fitzy gets a message on his answering machine.  It’s Aria’s dad.  He’s sorry about his bad behavior at the Parent Teacher Conference, and wants to take Fitzy out for a drink (or ten). 

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MY LORD!  Does the ENTIRE Montgomery family want to BONE this guy?

Emily Gets “Special Treatment”

Poor Emily!  She can’t catch a break!  First her lover gets shipped off to De-Gaying Camp.  Now her teammate, Little Orphan Butchy’s, crackpot dad is shouting across the school lunch room that Emily is getting special treatment on the swimteam, just because she’s a lesbian.  (Yeah, because that makes a lot of sense!  And by “a lot” I mean “none at all.”)

“Man, my dad is such a DOUCHE!  Now, I wish I really was a Little Orphan, instead of just having a Little Orphan haircut.”

Emily keeps the pain of this experience to herself.  And doesn’t tell her mom about it, out of fear of upsetting her.  But count on Aria’s mom to SPILL THE BEANS. 

“Hi, my name is Big Mouth Montgomery.  What’s yours?”

(Seriously?  I know it ended up working out for the best.  But that was a TOTALLY inappropriate thing for Aria’s mom to do . . . Then again, making out in the school library after hours, and hitting on your daughter’s English teacher, are also inappropriate things to do.  So, at least, her character is consistent.)

Later, at the Parent Teacher Conferences, Emily’s mom confronts Emily about what Little Orphan Butchy’s dad said about her in the lunchroom. 

When Emily reluctantly admits to witnessing the event, Emily’s mom takes big steps toward redeeming herself in my eyes, by calling out Little Orphan Butchy’s dad for constantly blaming other’s for his own daughter’s shortcomings.  When it’s all over, Emily’s mom turns to Emily, and gives her a speech, that I must admit, made me go all mushy inside.  (I may have even shed a tear or two.  Shhh!  Don’t tell anyone!)

“I still don’t understand [your sexuality].  But I love you.  You are my child.  And nobody hurts my child.  I’m sorry if I [was a homophobic biatch who got your girlfriend shipped off to De-Gaying Camp] . .  .” says Emily’s mom tearfully.

Then they hug . . .

*sniffle sniffle*

That night, Emily walks to her car.  But before she can put her key in the ignition, an uninvited SOMEONE piles into her passenger seat.  (Because that’s not rude or scary, at all!)

Pouty Paige wrongly assumes that, because Emily’s mom stuck up for her against Paige’s dad, Emily’s mom is tolerant of her “lifestyle.”  “Why is everything so easy for you?”  Paige whines.  (Ughhh!  I despise this girl!  Can’t they put a COOL Lesbian onto this show, for Emily’s sake?  Tea from Skins, perhaps?)

“I’m single!”

Emily begins to explain to Paige just how NOT easy life is for her.  Upon hearing this, Paige shocks Emily, by planting a Big Fat Wet one on her lips . ..

“Don’t tell,” says Paige when it’s all over, dashing from the car, as quickly as she came . . .

“W .  . . T . . . F!”

OK . . . Did anyone NOT see this little “twist” coming, a mile away .  . . aside from Emily, of course? 

Don’t worry, Emily.  You are not alone.  Kurt from Glee feels your pain.

Spencer’s New Sidekick

When the episode opens, we see Spencer and the rest of the girls trying to decipher the braille note that Toby supposedly found hidden in Jenna’s room . . .

Using the internet, Spencer is able to translate the code, by matching the braille to corresponding letters . . .

This is the message she decodes . . .

Aside from being a song by Michael Jackson, it means precisely nothing.  The other girls are convinced that Toby has “punked” them, because he doesn’t trust them.  This, of course, would be completely understandable, considering they all, more or less, accused him of being Ali’s killer, just a few weeks back.  But Spencer, who has seemingly fallen in LOVE with the guy over the course of two weeks (It’s amazing what a little French kissing tutoring can do for your love life.), can’t IMAGINE that Creepy Toby would do such a thing to her.

So, Spencer calls Toby to make sure he hasn’t punked her ass, Ashton Kutcher style.  He tells her he hasn’t.  She’s just reading the code wrong.  Spencer later figures out that the braille marks also represent numbers.  So, the code, in addition to saying “Bad,” also says “214.” 

When Spencer meets up with Toby later, while “Blind” Jenna is away at “flute practice, he tells her, that “Blind” Jenna wrote the note, after talking about Spencer on the phone.  He claims that “Blind” Jenna is afraid of all the PLL girls involved in the accident, but Spencer, most of all.  Toby asks Spencer if the numbers have any significance to her. “Aside from being the date this episode is airing?  They don’t . . .

But thanks to the producers, we are later shown that 214 is motel room number.  And guess who’s staying at that motel?

YIPPPEE!  It’s Wren!  He’s back!  He’s back!  YAY!

Or . . . maybe not . . .  You see, I was SO excited about the prospect of my Wren returning to PLL, that I took the liberty of rewatching the Motel Kiss that occurred between Spencer and Wren during episode 4.  And, unfortunately, unless he changed rooms (please, please let him have changed rooms), he wasn’t staying in 214 . . .

Room 103?

So, “Blind” Jenna’s cryptic note remains a mystery.  You know what else remains a mystery, why “Blind” Jenna was shopping for a lace dress, (“He loves lace,” she says creepily to the store clerk.).  Also, why was she LOOKING AT HERSELF IN THE MIRROR while she was trying it on?

If you recall, this is the SECOND time we’ve seen “Blind” Jenna look at herself in the mirror.  THIS was the first . . .

So, who was Jenna getting all dolled up for?  Stepbrother Toby would be the most obvious choice (EWWWW! EWWW! EWWW!).  After all, he had just received some very good news (more on that in a moment), and would, perhaps, be in the mood to screw “celebrate.”  And Spencer did receive THIS cryptic message from “A,” when she agreed to meet up with Toby again.

But perhaps, Jenna has another lover we don’t know about.  Maybe it’s Pedo Ian  (He seems to like them young!), or maybe it’s Ali’s killer?  Unfortunately, this is yet another mystery that we will have to wait to solve.

Less of a mystery is Creepy Toby’s guilt, or lack thereof.  When Spencer arrives at Toby’s house, the two share a moment.  Their hands brushing against one another, as they both fondle one of Jenna’s snowglobes.  During that Moment, Toby shares his good news with Spencer.  I am STD Free!  The District Attorney has dropped the case against him for Ali’s murder, because the blood evidence on Ali’s coat was “corrupted.”

Spencer offers to bring Toby down to the police station to have his House Arrest leg bracelet removed, and Toby agrees.   But then, once the new couple step outside, Jenna is there with her CANE OF DESTRUCTION!  She wants Toby in her cab, and she’s not about to take no for an answer . . .

SPENCER: “Awwww, crap!  She’s gonna hit us with that thing, isn’t she?”

TOBY: “It actually feels kind of good, when she does it right.”

SPENCER: “I just vomited in my mouth, hearing you say that.”

TOBY:  “Breath mint?”

“Hope you brought a helmet!”

Though “Blind” Jenna worked the whole “blind” angle, by calling Spencer “Emily,” I don’t buy for a second that Jenna didn’t know EXACTLY who was in the process of stealing her man.  Jenna briskly tells Spencer that her services are no longer required.  Her CAB can take Toby to the police station.  “I’m going with Spencer,” says Toby firmly.

That’s when Jenna’s head starts spinning around in circles, and she begins spewing green goo out of her mouth . . . just kidding!  But she certainly wasn’t a Happy Camper. 

During their road trip to the pokey, Spencer and Toby bond a bit.  And the sexual tension between them becomes increasingly evident . . .

TOBY:  “Everyone else on this show makes out in cars.  Are you sure you don’t want to try it?  It’ll be fun.”

SPENCER: “I generally only kiss boys who are dating my sister, or hit on my mom.”

TOBY:  “I can do that.”

Toby notes that he is ready to make changes in his life.  I suspect it’s only a matter of time before those “changes in his life,” include a nice long trip inside Spencer’s pants . . .

“Ready or not, I’m coming in!”

And that was “The New Normal” in a nutshell.  It wasn’t exactly the most eventful episode we’ve seen, so far.  But at least it paved the way for plenty of Hot Hookups in the future (Hanna/LucasCaleb, Spencer/Toby, Emily/Yucky Paige, ME/Wren) . . . 

How about you?  Did you enjoy “The New Normal?”  Are you liking any of these new pairings?  What’s the deal with “Blind” Jenna and that Leland creep?  What are your thoughts on the number 214, and how it relates to the PLL mysteries?  And finally, how excited are you about the Naked Caleb featured in the promos for next week’s episode?

Speaking of the promo, you can watch IT, and a sneak peek from next week’s episode, RIGHT HERE!

See ya next week, my Pretties!

[www.juliekushner.com]

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