February 29, 2020

Felicity 1.8, Drawing the Line, Part 2: The Rest of the Story

Posted in TV tagged , , at 1:29 pm by Jenn

Story wears a lot of barrettes in this episode

Summary: Noel is considering a big change and wants to share it with a friend: He’s thinking about growing a goatee. He rubs his face to show where it would be. “Yeah, I know where a goatee goes,” his friend replies. I love you, unnamed friend. Felicity interrupts the thrilling conversation to talk to Noel about something that’s actually important. As Unnamed Friend (who apparently is in a few episodes but never gets a name; I’ll call him Brian because that’s the actor’s name) leaves, he tells Noel not to grow a goatee. Thank you, Brian.

So anyway, Felicity tells Noel that he can’t tell anyone else what she’s about to reveal. She announces that Zach raped Julie. Noel asks if Julie’s okay, and Felicity says she’s fine physically, but not necessarily mentally. Felicity isn’t sure what she plans to do. Noel says that, according to his RA training, 95% of people who have been raped don’t report it. He can’t remember the official procedure for handling it. Felicity asks to borrow the book so she can get some guidance on what to do.

Next, she makes a tape for Sally, saying how amazing it is that she started caring about Julie after knowing her for such a short time. She’s convinced Julie to go to the hospital, which Julie finds silly, since she’s fine. Felicity offers to stay with her while she’s being examined. Julie declines. Her bed is still bare.

At the hospital, Julie calmly tells a doctor about her night with Zach. They had a few drinks after a recording session, and he walked her back to her room. After some making out, he started taking off his clothes. Julie said she didn’t want to rush things, and Zach said that was fine. Still, he took off her bra. She told him she wanted to wait to have sex, but he kept trying to touch her in ways she didn’t want. Julie said no, but when Zach got on top of her, she was unable to get him to stop.

Julie stays mostly emotionless through the conversation and tells the doctor she doesn’t want to get overly dramatic. Nothing violent happened, and Zach didn’t scream or anything. When he left in the morning, it was like nothing had happened. Julie’s not even sure this classifies as rape. The doctor tells her it does. Julie says Zach didn’t use a condom, so that’s a whole other mess to deal with.

As they’re leaving the hospital, Julie tells Felicity that she has to take some pills to prevent pregnancy. She’s grateful to Felicity for getting her new sheets. A detective named Dennis finds them and asks to take Julie’s statement. Julie hesitates, and though Felicity encourages her to talk to Dennis, Julie asks to hold off until later.

Felicity tells Sally that if she hadn’t come to New York, she and Julie never would have met, and Julie might not have told anyone what happened to her. As Julie takes a morning-after pill, a girl named Story shows up at Felicity’s door. She’s a prospective student Felicity forgot she signed up to host for a few days. Conscientious Felicity did not, amazingly, tell Meghan about this ahead of time.

Since Felicity is dealing with some stuff right now, she asks Meghan to look after Story for a little while. Meghan refuses to be responsible for an impressionable high school student. You know, that’s probably a good idea. Meghan says Story can sleep in the room, but if she touches Meghan’s box, she’s dead. Felicity goes to Elena to ask her to house Story instead (also a good idea), though she can’t give Elena any details on why she needs the change. Elena seems to get that something major is going on and agrees, though she regrets that when Story asks to go to a club.

Felicity tells Sally that Julie’s become withdrawn. Felicity gets her to come to lunch, where Zach approaches them and asks why Julie hasn’t been returning his calls. She acts like everything’s normal, while he doesn’t seem to get that anything bad happened. Somehow, Felicity doesn’t throw her tray at him and chase him out of the cafeteria while screaming horrible names at him, which is what I would have done. The two see Zach chatting with Ben, and Julie starts to cry a little, the first real emotion she’s shown since the assault.

Noel and Felicity meet with a counselor named Gina to discuss Julie. Gina tells them to keep listening to her and believe what she tells them. She also wants Julie to get help. Noel asks about the protocol for reporting the rape, if Julie decides she wants to. If she goes to the police, the DA probably won’t take the case; it’s too hard to prosecute cases of “acquaintance rape” where drugs or alcohol were involved.

If Julie reports it to the school, she’ll need to write a detailed description of the assault. The dean of students would gather evidence, including medical and police reports, and witness statements. The dean would also meet with Zach, and if there was enough evidence for investigation, the Student Conduct Committee would take over. Julie would have to testify. It’s not a great experience, but it would be worse to do nothing. Gina warns that Julie’s sense of trust and control will be compromised right now. Almost a third of people who have been raped contemplate suicide.

Julie’s distracted on a walk through the city and almost walks in front of a car. Felicity finds her and admits that she went to the counselor to talk about Julie’s options. Julie accepts the pamphlets Gina gave Felicity to give her, but she insists that she doesn’t need counseling. Felicity thinks she’s too close to the situation to really see everything. Julie blows her off and says she’ll call Felicity later.

Ben and Zach hang out at Ben’s place, talking about Julie and the movie. Sean’s new business idea: vending machines that sell disposable cameras. Okay, not the worst idea. I mean, until camera phones come out and Sean goes bankrupt. Zach’s RA, Darryl, comes by so Zach goes into the hall to talk to him. Darryl has heard something about Zach and Julie and wants to know if Zach raped her. If it’s true, Darryl will make Zach’s life miserable. But in case you thought it was because Darryl is a good guy, it’s really because this incident could threaten his job, which could threaten his tuition. Thanks anyway, Darryl.

A very confused Zach finds Julie in the laundry room and asks why Darryl might think Zach raped Julie. Julie pretends she didn’t say anything to anyone. She says she’s confused about what happened. Zach yells that he doesn’t get how she couldn’t know what happened. Their night together might not have been perfect, but he’s sure it wasn’t a crime. Plus, Julie started the makeout session, and they were both having a good time in her room. It’s not like Zach attacked her or ripped her clothes off.

Julie tries to leave, but he grabs her arm and keeps her there. He asks if she reported him, and Julie says no. She’s not sure if she’s going to, either. She says again that she’s confused. Zach tells her he’ll probably be expelled if she says he raped her. Julie asks him to let go of her arm. Zach insists that he didn’t rape her, but she ignores him and storms out.

Javier asks Felicity to work tomorrow, but Felicity’s trying to keep her schedule light. Julie interrupts the call to ask Felicity who she told about Zach. Felicity says she only told Noel because he might be able to help them deal with the situation. Julie says Felicity’s not the one who has to deal with it. Felicity says she was just trying to help. Julie tells her that pamphlets won’t help. She hates how condescending Felicity has been.

Felicity argues that Julie keeps saying she’s fine; she doesn’t think Julie would believe her if their situations were reversed. Julie says Felicity can’t understand what she’s going through. Felicity keeps saying that Julie should do the right thing, but she can’t know what that means. Plus, Felicity’s a virgin, so Julie doesn’t think she can understand the situation. Felicity says that, virgin or not, she can understand that someone was abused.

Julie says what happened was her fault. She gave out the same message to Zach that she gives to all guys. “I know what I am,” she says. Felicity thinks reporting the rape is easy, but it’s not that black and white. This isn’t the first time something like this has happened to Julie. She won’t be going to Gina or doing anything else that Felicity wants her to do. Felicity says she won’t sit there and watch Julie do nothing. Julie tells her she’s upset that Felicity told Noel what happened. Why did she ever think that Felicity would understand?

Noel has failed to listen to Brian and is working on his facial hair. Sigh. Felicity comes in and blasts him for telling Darryl about Julie and Zach. He wanted to warn Darryl that there was a possible rapist living on his floor. Felicity says that Julie thinks Felicity betrayed her, which…maybe she did. Noel tells her that, based on statistics, Julie probably won’t do anything, and Felicity can’t change that. She notices his new stubble and asks what “that thing” is. Maybe now he’ll shave.

Elena tries to study while Story makes a lot of noise with a magazine. Story blathers about nightclubs. Elena asks why she wants to go to college. Story wants to do something science-y, and college is the only way to do that. Elena says she’d go out if she didn’t have to study, but she does, so Story needs to be quiet. Story doesn’t listen. Make her sleep in the hall, Elena.

Ben approaches Felicity in a classroom the next day and asks what’s up with Julie. He’s heard rumors and hasn’t been able to reach her. Felicity tries to stay out of it, for once, just telling Ben to talk to Julie. Ben asks if Zach knows what’s going on. Felicity’s facial expressions help him grasp that Zach is the one who perpetrated the rumored rape.

Ben finds Zach in the cafeteria and asks what happened. Zach insists that it was all consensual, but Ben believes the rumors over him. He gets aggressive with Zach, who says that Ben should know what Julie’s like, since they kind of went out. Ben says they didn’t sleep together since Julie didn’t want to. Zach tells him that Julie felt differently about him. Ben tackles him and hits him a couple times. Zach tells him to stop, and Ben does, saying that that’s the difference between them.

Elena tells Felicity that Story tried to get her to go out at 2 a.m. the night before. Felicity thinks it sounds sweet, but Elena isn’t amused. She’s done with babysitting and is sending Story back to Felicity. To her credit, Felicity doesn’t object, and even thanks Elena for taking Story in at all. I think Felicity owes Elena a big favor. Like, free food at Dean & DeLuca for the rest of her life.

Ben visits Julie, who guesses that he’s heard the same stories everyone else has about her. Ben tells her that his father always let him down as a kid, never showing up at important events (including graduation, which is why we didn’t see him there). He’d also get angry and violent. Ben spent his life trying to figure out what he was doing wrong to set off his father. Now that he’s away from home, he can see that he didn’t do anything wrong. Julie seems to get what he means.

As Zach studies the fat lip Ben gave him, Julie steels herself and goes to see Gina. A woman goes to Zach’s classroom looking for him, and he doesn’t look surprised to be called out of the room. Felicity tells Noel that Julie went to see Gina; Noel already knows, as Julie credited Felicity with talking her into it. Story meets Noel and asks if he wants to go to a club. Go away, Story. I want Brian back. Felicity tells Noel to shave, but Story likes the facial hair. Seriously, go away, Story.

Felicity, Ben, and Julie try to study together in Felicity’s room, but Julie’s not paying much attention. When Meghan comes in, Story starts talking to her about her I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter. Meghan asks if Story looked in her box. When Story says no, Meghan says, “Forget it.” She’s going out to a club, and Story is thrilled to finally find someone who wants to party with her. Felicity’s like, “What just happened?”

After they leave, Julie announces that she wants to go talk to Zach. He has no idea what’s going on, and she wants him to know that she’s pursuing punishment. She tells him she reported the rape and is going to testify. He may not think he raped her, but she knows he did. Zach quietly says he agrees. He admitted it to the dean and is going to leave school. He even wrote Julie an apology letter. It says that night must have been horrible for her and he wishes things had gone differently.

Julie says she didn’t want him to be expelled. She just wanted him to know what happened. Zach tells her that nothing that happened or that’s happening now is her fault. That night with her was his first time (both for sex and for rape), though he knows that’s not an excuse. He hopes that one day, Julie won’t hate him so much, because he’s truly sorry. Julie says she is, too.

Sally’s tape back to Felicity is about blaming ourselves when horrible things happen. She even blamed herself when her fiancé died. She thinks it’s human nature to try to make sense of things. While Ben plays video games alone and Story and Meghan go out together, Felicity holds a mirror so Noel can shave. Sally says that bad things sometimes just happen without a reason or purpose. Julie reads Zach’s letter as Sally says that life involves picking up the pieces of what’s happened to us.

Thoughts: Story is played by Riley Weston, who was a writer on the show. She was hyped as a 19-year-old phenom but was later discovered to really be 32. The truth cost her the writing job and a six-figure deal with Disney. So in this episode, they thought they’d cast a 19-year-old to play a 16-year-old, but she was actually playing a character half her age.

I liked the scene where Noel and Felicity went to see Gina. Not only was it informative for the audience, but it showed how much they wanted to help Julie.

Amanda Foreman (Meghan) must have had a lot of fun going to wardrobe and seeing what she got to wear each episode. I bet the wardrobe department loved getting to put together crazy outfits for her.

2 Comments »

  1. Deja said,

    Meghan def had killer ensembles! Felicity’s clothes got cuter in s2 (we’ll save the hair convo for when you get there)


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