May 5, 2013

BH90210 5.26, A Song for My Mother: Portlandia

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , at 1:08 pm by Jenn

Oh, David, those flowers aren't for you, silly

Oh, David, those flowers aren’t for you, silly

Summary: Ray meets Donna at the airport in Portland, and poor David has to watch them kiss hello. Ray didn’t know he was tagging along to visit his mother. Back in Beverly Hills, Dylan accompanies Valerie to a tattoo parlor, complaining the whole time. She knows he’s cranky because his and Charlie’s screenplay isn’t going well. Dylan’s planning to visit Charlie’s former hypnotherapist so he can learn more to apply to their protagonist. Valerie chickens out on the tattoo.

In Portland, David goes to visit his mother at work, but learns that Sheila was fired a while ago for not showing up on time (and in some cases, at all). Next he heads to her apartment, but someone else is living there. The building manager says she left two months ago after failing to pay her rent for four months.

Dylan meets the hypnotherapist, Dr. Campbell, who has a really nice house despite living in the middle of an area destroyed by fires and mudslides. She tells Dylan the house is still standing because of luck and fate – and this isn’t the first time she’s survived a fire. Dylan thinks she’s talking about a previous lifetime. Dr. Campbell tells him that she used to be in advertising, but one day she was hypnotized and started on a new journey. Or an old one, really, because she’s been “channeling travelers” for hundreds of years.

Donna and Ray’s reunion makeout session is interrupted by David, who’s distressed about not being able to find Sheila. She left a bunch of mail behind in her apartment, including alimony checks from Mel. Donna’s surprised that Mel didn’t say anything about his checks not being cashed. Ray has little sympathy, I guess because his relationship with his mom is good. Also, because he’s a jerk. Donna asks if they can borrow his truck, but Ray refuses. Because he’s a jerk.

Ray goes off to his club while Donna stays behind with David to follow a lead. He found a flier for a Valentine’s Day gathering at a bar Sheila used to frequent. The bartender hasn’t seen her for a while, but another patron reports that he recently saw her at a hotel, “setting up shop.” David and Donna go to the hotel and learn that Sheila was arrested for disorderly conduct. David doesn’t understand what’s happened to his formerly posh mom. Donna advises him to call Mel.

David makes the call from a police station, then reports to Donna that Mel didn’t sound surprise. A police officer tells them that no one pressed charges against Sheila, so they let her go. It’s been six weeks and no one’s seen her since. The police can’t do anything until 48 hours after Sheila was reported missing. The officer suggests that they check homeless shelters. David tries to send Donna off to Ray’s club to see him perform, but she wants to keep helping him look for Sheila. You can guess how that goes over with Ray.

Donna and David head to a shelter but have no luck. Next they make missing-person posters, and David berates himself for not being more involved in his mother’s life. Donna wonders why she moved to Portland when she doesn’t know anyone there. David tells her that Sheila used to say she was tired of pretending to be happy in California; she preferred the rainy weather in Portland. In bed in Beverly Hills, Dylan teases Valerie about her still-yet-uninked tattoo, and she teases him back about wanting to be hypnotized.

Ray and Donna fight about her spending so much time with David, but Donna is unapologetic about trying to help her friend, not to mention the guy who saved her from Garrett. Ray snaps at her to go sleep with him, then, mockingly saying that he forgot that she won’t sleep with anyone. Donna starts to leave but he pushes her back onto the bed. She tries again, and this time he knocks her into the door. He apologizes (not sounding sincere), saying it was an accident, but Donna leaves anyway.

Ray follows her to David’s hotel room, but Donna’s locked herself in the bathroom and won’t talk to him. David doesn’t know what’s going on. Ray gives him the keys to his truck to use the next morning. David assures him that he didn’t come to Portland to drive a wedge between Donna and Ray. Donna emerges from the bathroom and goes back to her and Ray’s hotel room. Ray apologizes to Donna again, promising he would never do anything to hurt her. He just loves her so much and was scared he was going to lose her.

The next day, David and Donna meet Mel at the airport, and he tries to ease David’s anxieties about Sheila. David says that the police think she’s crazy. Mel informs him that Sheila was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and has been on lithium since David was a kid. David’s upset that no one told him (and they should have, since there’s a history of mental illness in Sheila’s family). Sheila never wanted him to know because she didn’t want him to see her fall apart.

Mel continues that Sheila was stable for years, but stopped taking her medication while David was at camp one summer. She went on a shopping spree, then smashed all the china when Mel confronted her. When David came home, she acted like nothing was wrong. David asks why Mel didn’t think anything was wrong when Sheila stopped cashing his checks. Mel admits that he didn’t want to get sucked back into her problems, and he’d hoped she was being cared for by someone else.

Dr. Campbell hypnotizes Dylan by telling him to imagine he’s in an elevator. Instead, he sees himself running on train tracks, similar to the dreams he had when he was in a coma. He admits to Dr. Campbell that he’s never been able to shake the dreams. She tells him that she’s not 100 percent sure that reincarnation and past lives are real, but if Dylan can regress, he can gain understanding and move forward with his life. He just needs to commit. She decides that they should have their next session at his house, though he isn’t sold on trying again.

David, Donna, and Mel return to the hotel, where Ray tells them that someone saw their flier and has information. A homeless woman takes David and Mel to the street where Sheila (also homeless) has been living, and after a minute of being unable to get through to her, Sheila becomes lucid. David and Mel take her to the hospital and discuss other family members who have been mentally ill. Mel admits that he was relieved to learn that David had a drug problem last year, rather than a chemical imbalance.

David wonders what to do next, and Mel says that the doctors want her to stay in Portland for a while. Then they can bring her to Beverly Hills and help her get a job and a place to live. David thanks Mel for doing so much for his ex, but Mel doesn’t think he’s doing anything unordinary. Sheila is the reason he has a son, so he’ll always be grateful to her.

Ray tries to explain away his behavior with Donna the night before, saying that being on the road is hard. He also feels bad that he wasn’t there to save Donna from Garrett. Donna’s totally over it. David and Mel play a cute tape for Sheila that she and David made when she taught him to play the piano as a child. She says that she never wanted to be a burden; she thought she could take care of herself. David tells her she doesn’t have to do that anymore.

Valerie visits Dylan to show off her new tattoo: She got his name inked on her breast. He flips, but she tells him it’s fake. Then she shows him her real tattoo, a daisy on her back. David meets up with Donna at Ray’s club and tells her that listening to the tape made him want to get back into music. He admits that he stopped playing because he thought the music was making him crazy. Donna notes that the drugs were doing that. He thanks her for all her help.

Ray dedicates his next song to Donna, and David realizes while watching them look at each other that they’re happy together. He goes outside and looks up at the moon. In Beverly Hills, Dylan is also looking up at the moon instead of sleeping next to Valerie. She thinks he should blow off Dr. Campbell if he doesn’t really want to be hypnotized. Her father used to say that we’re only alive for a short time, so it should be a good time. Dylan replies that he’s not sure we’re only alive for a short time.

Thoughts: I think this episode was to make up for earlier episodes where Brian Austin Green didn’t get to do anything.

Donna and Ray, please learn how to kiss more quietly. You’re grossing me out.

Dylan wears a suit during the day and jeans in bed. Okay, then.

Danger, Donna Martin, danger!

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