January 3, 2015

Party of Five 6.1, Don’t Let Go: Decisions, Decisions

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , , , at 1:21 pm by Jenn

Aren't they cute?

Look at these cuties

Summary: Though Charlie asked Bailey to be his best man, Bailey has basically made himself the wedding planner, and has gone a little overboard. (There are doves.) The wedding is four days away, but the theater it was supposed to be held in is suddenly closed, declared unsafe for people to go inside. The Salingers and Kirsten are fine with just getting married in the backyard, but Bailey wants them to have something special. (Also, the backyard is bad luck.)

Charlie and Kirsten go to the airport to pick up Ellie and Gene. Ellie is polite to Charlie, but Gene has major problems with him after his and Kirsten’s previous relationship issues. Joe is also back in town for the wedding. Bailey assigns Claudia to find music for the wedding, so she immediately picks Cody’s band. Sarah wants to help out, but Bailey’s keeping her at a distance.

Julia gets a letter from Stillman Press inviting her to meet with Stillman himself, Evan. He wants to discuss a story she submitted about domestic abuse – it’s not original enough. He gets tons of submissions from abused women, but none of them reveal why the women don’t leave. Evan has an imprint for nonfiction paperback books and thinks Julia should submit a proposal.

Claudia gets Cody and his horrible haircut to agree to play Charlie and Kirsten’s wedding. Claudia’s been spending some time away from Cody because she’s not quite ready to take the next step with him. Also, because his haircut is awful. Kirsten’s parents meet Daphne and Diana; Daphne’s getting ready to take care of the baby on her own while Charlie and Kirsten are on their honeymoon. Gene hates that Kirsten voluntarily spends time with these people.

Bailey manages to book a church for the wedding, though it’ll have to take place at 8 a.m. The priest there thinks he and Sarah are getting married. Sarah says they might someday. (Spoiler: They won’t.) Bailey’s mad that she isn’t sure when he is. Back at the house, Owen wonders if he should be mad, too. Sarah thinks it’s reasonable – if Bailey loved her enough to propose, he’s allowed to be upset that she said no.

Claudia goes to see Cody and catches him kissing another girl. Meanwhile, Kirsten learns that she’ll be getting married at 8 a.m. Charlie still thinks that the backyard is a better option. He and Kirsten try to tactfully tell Bailey that they appreciate all his planning but would prefer things that fit them better. Bailey’s like, “Then plan your own wedding yourselves,” like that’s a novel concept.

Julia goes back to Evan to tell him she doesn’t think she can balance schoolwork with writing. He suggests that she transfer to a college more focused on writing. He’s on the board of the College of Fine Arts and might be able to pull strings to get her a transfer, even though it’s October. Julia isn’t sure about the singular focus. Evan points out that he hasn’t even accepted her book proposal yet. She needs to figure out what makes sense to her.

Bailey whines to Sarah about Kirsten and Charlie disagreeing with his decisions, but she’s not that sympathetic. She thinks he was trying to turn it into his own event. She continues that she had the right to respond the way she did to his proposal, and she still has the right to not be sure about what she wants in the future. Sarah’s sick of Bailey being mad at her and treating her like an enemy.

Charlie asks Daphne if he and Kirsten can borrow a garter for the wedding. (Heh – of course she has more than one.) Gene’s like, “Yeah, no one’s surprised.” Ellie tells him to shut it, but Kirsten wants her father’s opinion. She calls him on acting like he’s superior to Daphne, who Kirsten thinks is awesome now. Ellie tries again to quiet Gene, blurting that Kirsten can’t handle his criticism.

Kirsten’s upset that her parents are questioning her decisions because of her past battle with depression. Ellie tells her that it doesn’t matter what they think. Kirsten disagrees – she wants her life choices to mean something to her parents. If they can’t support her, then after the wedding, they can phase themselves out of her life.

Cody, whose hair looks marginally better, tries to talk to Claudia, but she doesn’t want to hear about his girl on the side. She thinks he’s cheating because Claudia won’t sleep with him. Cody promises to cut the girl out of his life but doesn’t apologize for wanting to have sex. He understands why Claudia wants to wait, and he’d like her to understand why he doesn’t.

Julia talks to Griffin about her possible life changes, and the risks of making a commitment to writing. She compares it to Charlie and Kirsten getting married. Griffin points out that there are ways out of marriage, as they both know. He also doesn’t think he should be the one she asks for advice, since they’re not usually on the same wavelength. He’s taking a less chancy approach to life, knowing that he has plenty of time to take bigger steps.

Charlie assures Bailey that he’s still the best man, then reports that the wedding will take place at the house. Bailey’s opinion matters, so Charlie wants to make sure he’s not too upset about things. Bailey shares what Sarah said about him wanting the wedding to be his. He admits that he’s disappointed because Charlie’s leaving to start his own family. Bailey’s happy for him, but wants him to be less casual about everything. It’s a big deal for everyone, and their way of letting Charlie go.

The wedding day arrives, and Claudia and Julia help Kirsten get ready. The ceremony has been moved, but Kirsten isn’t sure where it will be. Charlie’s at the house, though he’s not supposed to be, and sees Kirsten in her dress. He doesn’t think they need to worry about bad luck. All their past luck has brought them here, where they belong.

Sarah and Bailey are awkward with each other, having realized how long it’s been since they had sex. They start making out. Julia, Claudia, and Kirsten follow directions to a little beach, which Charlie secured through an acquaintance of his father’s. Bailey barely makes it on time, and Kirsten’s parents don’t appear to be there at all, but everything else goes well. Bailey’s happy that the doves make it.

Kirsten spots Ellie at the reception and gets an earful from her mother about how difficult it was for her when Kirsten was sick. Kirsten assures Ellie that she’s happy. Julia tells Griffin that she’s going to transfer schools, and will move back into the Salingers’ while she looks for her own place. After Evan and Griffin gave her two different pieces of advice, she realized that she really did need to make her own decision. Griffin likes the part of Julia that’s confident about her choices.

Claudia tells Cody that they’re in different places in their lives, and she can’t be with him anymore. Bailey and Sarah are back on good terms, and can hardly keep it in their pants. When toast time comes, Charlie talks about making the right decisions, and holding on to things that are important to you. By the way, Gene’s there now. Charlie’s glad that his parents left him with the “secret to life,” which is to never let go. Fast-forward to the end of the reception, when the other Salingers see Charlie and Kirsten off on their honeymoon.

Thoughts: Evan is played by Kyle Secor. No matter what he does, he’ll always be Jake Kane to me.

Every single aspiring writer in the world just called BS on Julia’s plot. She goes in for a meeting with the head of the press (no way) about an article she submitted (he would probably never even see it), and he practically offers her a book deal (NO WAY). Next she’ll win the lottery just by looking at a ticket.

Claudia: “What if we missed the whole wedding? What if we’re too late?” Kirsten: “Claud.” Hee. Nice throwaway moment.

’90s music alert: Cody’s band plays Third Eye Blind’s “How’s It Going to Be.” When they break, they put on Smash Mouth’s “All Star.”

October 12, 2013

Party of Five 3.12, Desperate Measures: Worst Road Trip Ever

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , , , at 1:12 pm by Jenn

Tone it down, guys. She's not dying of cholera

Tone it down, guys. She’s not dying of cholera

Summary: Claudia can’t open a jar. I hope Lacey Chabert’s agent feels proud of himself. Charlie’s is that he’s going to Chicago to see Kirsten. This means Julia’s in charge of Claudia and Owen, which is probably a bad idea. Charlie isn’t sure when he’ll be coming back, which is an even worse idea. When Sam comes over to work, Julia gives him a mix tape (adorable) of songs that include the word “roof.” He awkwardly asks her out, which distracts her from Claudia, who doesn’t feel well. Julia accepts Sam’s invitation to go skiing, which I guess means Claudia’s now in charge of Owen.

Bailey’s wrestling much better, and I don’t just mean with his alcohol issues. In fact, Coach Russ is using him as an example of how much you can accomplish if you work hard. He tells the team that for the next three days before a big meet, they can only drink water, no alcohol. Charlie arrives in Chicago, but Ellie doesn’t want him there; Gene’s out of town and she’s having enough trouble handling Kirsten on her own. Except when Kirsten shows up, she seems fine, and very happy to see Charlie.

Sarah and Bailey are somehow still together. She tells him that her parents have given her separate billing on their shared credit card, which means she can make purchases and pay for them without her parents knowing. What this really means is that she can use the card to rent a hotel room and try to have sex with Bailey again. He uses wrestling as an excuse to stay abstinent before the next meet. Julia asks Claudia to watch Owen while she goes skiing, but Claudia’s feeling really sick now and refuses. Julia refuses her refusal.

Bailey goes home cranky, and Callie guesses that it’s because he and Sarah had yet another fight. He doesn’t want to discuss it with her, of all people. He’s also annoyed because there’s no beer; she says he drank it all. (Red flag! Red flag!) Callie calls him out for either treating her badly or wanting her in bed, with no in between. He ignores her and goes out to buy beer. In Chicago, Kirsten tells Charlie that she’s been doing better since she started a new medication about a month ago. He wonders why she didn’t tell him before now. She says she didn’t want to jinx things.

The next day, Charlie and Kirsten hang out downtown, talking about his family. She’s definitely doing a lot better, and he enjoys seeing her smile. Sarah goes to Bailey’s wrestling practice to see him, but he’s skipped it. Julia’s late picking Owen up from daycare because she was shopping for ski clothes. This means she misses a phone call from a doctor letting her know that Julia has been admitted to the hospital with appendicitis. When Julia gets to the hospital, she learns that Claudia had emergency surgery without anyone’s authorization since no one in the family could be reached. And now Claudia doesn’t want to see her.

Kirsten tells Charlie that she’s ready to go back to San Francisco with him. She’s so ready that she wants them to drive there tonight. Charlie’s too happy to think that there’s anything strange about the request, especially since Kirsten doesn’t want to see her mother first. Sarah goes to Bailey’s apartment and finds him hungover from a drinking binge. She worries that he’s out of sorts because of her, but he swears it’s not. Sarah points out that he said he wasn’t supposed to drink or have sex; if he can do one, then why not the other? “I did both,” Bailey admits, coming clean about Callie.

Kirsten calls Ellie to let her know she’s going back to San Francisco. Ellie tries to talk her out of it, saying Kirsten’s doctor doesn’t think she’s well enough for something like that. Kirsten hangs up on her, then tells Charlie that Ellie’s okay with it. Callie wakes Bailey up to tell him that Claudia’s in the hospital; he turned the answering machine down and didn’t get Julia’s message. He’s still really hungover, so Callie takes him to the hospital. When he arrives, Claudia will only talk to him, not Julia.

Sarah comes to the hospital with flowers, having heard about Claudia’s surgery from Julia, who called her when she was trying to reach Bailey. She runs into Callie and tears into her for sleeping with Bailey. Then when Bailey appears, Sarah gives him the flowers and leaves. Charlie and Kirsten drive all day, reaching Nebraska; he wants to stop for the night, but she’s eager to keep going. (She’s manic, Charlie. Learn the signs.)

Bailey to Sarah’s place, but she still doesn’t want to talk to him since she thinks he’s going to break up with her. Instead, he desperately declares his love for her and invites her to hate him. She admits that she does, and she wants to hurt him, but she still loves him. Charlie and Kirsten finally stop at a motel for the night, and she’s not quite as happy as she was before. She insists that she’s fine, but Charlie’s starting to realize that this was a bad idea. He wakes up in the middle of the night to find Kirsten sitting in a chair, crying, like she used to in San Francisco. She tells him she left too soon and needs to go back to Chicago.

Sam goes skiing without Julia, who’s staying at the hospital with Claudia even though Claudia won’t talk to her. Claudia hears her on the phone, admitting to feeling horrible, and finally talks to her. Bailey tells Callie that he and Sarah aren’t breaking up, so their hookups have to stop. Callie notes that the last time he said that was right before they hooked up again. She tells him he’s not worth all the drama. (Dude, seriously.)

Just before they’re about to leave for Chicago, Kirsten tells Charlie that she’s always tried to defend him in therapy, but her therapist eventually got her to see that she can’t be with him. She’s never been able to fully get past him leaving her on their wedding day. Every time she looks at him, that’s what she sees. Back in San Francisco, Julia and Claudia are sisterly again, even making plans to go swimming together. Sam visits, and Julia tells him that since she sometimes has to take care of Claudia and Owen, she may have to cancel plans. He’s okay with it, and even thinks Julia’s awesome for being so responsible.

Charlie returns Kirsten to Chicago, then decides to leave right away. Ellie blasts him for putting Kirsten through something difficult. He doesn’t want to stick around for another round of Ellie Hates Charlie, so he leaves without his things. Bailey and Sarah, on the other hand, are doing okay. Charlie comes home to an empty house and cries.

Thoughts: This episode title makes no sense. It should have been the title of the previous episode.

Salingers, I will adopt Owen and take him off your hands, since apparently no one cares enough to make sure a competent person is in charge of him.

Was Claudia admitted to the hospital from school? Wouldn’t Julia have been contacted at school? That whole plot device doesn’t hold together. How long was she out shopping, anyway? I would think that if no one from the family could be contacted, Claudia would have asked for Ross.

Callie appears to be the only person on this show who does schoolwork.

So after all that, Sarah’s just okay with Bailey cheating on her? We didn’t get to see any discussion other than her saying she still loves him. She didn’t even wait a day before she took him back! Come on, girl.

September 7, 2013

Party of Five 3.6, Going Home: Moving Doesn’t Necessarily Mean Moving On

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , at 2:43 pm by Jenn

Home is where the emotional repression is

Home is where the emotional repression is

Summary: Julia and Sarah are on a plane to go visit Dartmouth together. Sarah’s a nervous flier and just hopes the movie on the flight features Brad Pitt. She’s also nervous about going 3,000 miles from home. That’s the part that excites Julia the most. At the Salingers’, Charlie is surprised by a visit from Ellie and Gene, having been summoned by Claudia to take care of Kirsten. They’re mad at Charlie for not telling them what was going on.

Charlie confronts Claudia for going behind his back, and she reminds him what he said about Jody and trying to deal with things that are over their heads. He thinks she’s getting revenge for the Jody situation, but Claudia says she just wanted to help. He’s too furious to talk to her. While Ellie and Gene wonder why Kirsten didn’t call them, Bailey tells Charlie that he should have contacted the Bennetts. Charlie says that Bailey doesn’t even know what’s going on since he doesn’t live there anymore. He needs to stay out of it.

Bailey goes to his apartment to mope (with beer, so that’s not good) and help Callie come up with something insulting to say to her father on his birthday. At Dartmouth, Sarah learns that her mother’s in the hospital, having broken her hip. Julia, in contrast, feels no need to contact her family. Gene and Ellie blast Charlie for not taking good enough care of Kirsten – Gene claims that she wouldn’t be depressed if she weren’t with Charlie. Ellie outs Gene as having depression in his family, though.

The next day, Kirsten makes a little progress, getting out of bed and getting dressed, but it’s only because her parents are taking her to a psychiatrist. Charlie objects since Kirsten already has a doctor, but Kirsten goes along for the visit. Julia enjoys a stuffy social at Dartmouth while Sarah’s distracted by her mother’s health. Bailey complains to Callie about Charlie freezing him out. Callie shares the information her father sent her to include in his birthday toast, lamenting that he always expects her to disappoint him.

Kirsten and her parents return from the psychiatrist, and the Bennetts don’t want to talk to Charlie about their plans. Gene notes that they took care of Kirsten the first time she went through this, after Charlie left her and wasn’t around to care about her. Bailey and Callie spend the money she was supposed to use to fly home for her father’s birthday on a nice dinner together. Bailey decides to finally take Charlie’s advice and stay out of his family’s troubles.

Charlie asks Kirsten about the doctor’s visit, but she gets upset about everyone putting pressure on her. He promises to keep taking care of her. Julia finally calls home, but only to get Charlie to fax some of her writing to her. Claudia tells her that things are getting back with the Bennetts there. Currently, Charlie is yelling at Gene that he and Ellie are making things worse. He kicks them out of the house, but if the Bennetts are going to leave, they’re going to take Kirsten with them.

The next day, Charlie tries to talk to Ellie about convincing Gene to let Kirsten stay. Ellie thinks that she’s already caused enough problems, what with her affair, so she needs to side with Gene. Charlie accuses her of selling out her daughter to keep her husband. Julia gets more information from Claudia, so now she and Sarah are both annoying Dartmouth students by spending too much time on the phone. Neither of them seems to consider that they could just go home.

Charlie meets with a lawyer in an attempt to find a legal way to keep Ellie and Gene from taking Kirsten back to Chicago. Since they’re not married and Charlie has no legal rights, he’d have to take them to court. Charlie knows Kirsten isn’t up for that. Claudia calls Bailey to fill him in on the Bennetts’ plans to take Kirsten back to Chicago, then tries to keep Gene from coming into the house. He just wants to give Charlie a letter from a lawyer, explaining what will happen. Claudia begs Gene to let Kirsten stay, regretting her decision to call the Bennetts.

Apparently every year two dueling Dartmouth dorms hold a porcupine race, and Julia and Sarah are there for this year’s competition. Julia’s finally decided that they need to go home early. Bailey has also decided to go back to the house, which makes Callie mad, since they just spent a day agreeing to distance themselves from their families. She even calls him a hypocrite, since family emergencies apparently aren’t a good enough reason to try to support your loved ones. Shut up, Callie. Bailey tells her to go home for her father’s birthday. If you can walk away from a call begging you for help, you have a problem.

Charlie’s starting to realize that he’s probably going to lose Kirsten, so when Bailey shows up at the house, he’s really not in the mood to talk. Bailey says he’s just there for support, not for any lectures. He takes Kirsten some of the flowers she planted in the backyard and tells her that after the wedding, he never got used to her not being around. He knows Charlie’s going to take it really hard if she leaves. Bailey doesn’t want Kirsten to have to worry about Charlie, but he’s scared of what will happen if she goes. He encourages her to let Charlie keep caring for her.

Sarah decides to stay at Dartmouth and tries to convince Julia to do the same. Julia says she’s not going because anyone asked her, but because her family needs her. Sarah notes that going away to school means not being able to go home all the time. Julia replies that maybe she shouldn’t go to school so far away after all. She and Bailey can’t move on from Charlie like Sarah can move on from her parents.

The Bennetts return to the Salingers’ house and fight with Charlie over their legal maneuvers. They tell Kirsten that they want to take her home to Chicago, and she needs to say what she wants to do. She says she wants to stay with Charlie, then adds that she wants her parents to care for her, too. She’s too confused to realize that she has to pick one or the other. Gene takes this as a sign that the family will be going back to Chicago together.

As Gene and Ellie get Kirsten ready for their flight (treating her like a child), Claudia tries to talk to Charlie, but he’s not in the mood. She understands and tells him he can punish her however he wants. Julia arrives just in time to learn that her presence can’t really do anything, but she doesn’t feel like it was a bad idea to return. Charlie and Kirsten say a very sad goodbye, and while Kirsten leaves to let her family take care of her, Charlie lets his family do the same for him.

Thoughts: Kirsten lies in bed all day and her hair still looks better than mine. Grrrr.

I couldn’t find any information on the porcupine race, so I don’t think it’s real. It should be real! Someone needs to start an annual porcupine race!

The plot with Julia and Sarah wanting to go to school on the East Coast is dumb – it’s the same as Bailey’s plot from last season and it’s obviously going to end the same way.

August 12, 2013

Party of Five 3.1, Summer Fun, Summer Not: Adventure Time!

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , at 8:13 pm by Jenn

In case you forgot that the show takes place in San Francisco, here's the Ghirardelli sign

In case you forgot that the show takes place in San Francisco, here’s the Ghirardelli sign

Summary: Bailey and Will are planning a road trip to Mexico, which Sarah doesn’t get the point of. The guys tell her and Julia that it’s a bonding experience. While the other three continue discussing the trip, Julia spots Griffin. He’s done with school and has become a Merchant Marine; he’s in San Francisco on his way elsewhere. Julia sent him letters, but he either didn’t get them or didn’t read them. Griffin’s surprised to learn that she and Justin have broken up.

Kirsten has apparently moved back into the Salingers’ house, and is ignoring mail from her mother. Claudia returns from summer camp and announces that she met a boy and is in love. Sarah questions Julia about the status of things with Griffin, but there’s not much to say. Charlie and Kirsten are suspicious of Claudia’s claims about her new boyfriend, Byron: She never mentioned him in letters home, she has a picture of only him (she’s not in it), and Bailey, who picked her up from camp, didn’t meet him.

Gina isn’t happy that Will’s spending his last few days before starting school with Bailey instead of her. Will blurts out that she can come along. Of course, then Sarah has to be invited along, too. The girls are much more excited about crashing the trip than the guys are. Ellie unexpectedly shows up at the Salingers’ house, and Kirsten makes a preemptive strike, telling her not to bother criticizing because she’s not leaving Charlie. But Ellie isn’t there to criticize: She’s there because her marriage is over.

The next day, Kirsten tells Claudia that Ellie won’t tell her what happened and won’t let her call Gene. Claudia’s all, “I know everything about how scummy men are because of my new boyfriend.” Kirsten’s all, “Yes, your ‘boyfriend.’ I have heard of him.” She tells Claudia that when she was her age, she made up a fake boyfriend so her own camp bunkmates wouldn’t think she was a loser. Claudia doesn’t make the connection.

The road trippers head off, and now the girls aren’t so excited. The guys object to the girls’ use of a guidebook to find a place to stay; they’d planned to sleep on the beach. Bailey talks about taking risks and being able to handle whatever life throws at him. Sarah notes that his check-engine light just came on. Back in San Francisco, Julia totally-on-accident runs into Griffin. Just as it looks like he’s completely clueless and/or avoiding her, he asks if she wants to “get together.”

Charlie tells Kirsten to get Ellie out of the house; he doesn’t plan to give her a place to stay when she’s been very clear that she hates him. Kirsten points out that she can’t exactly kick out a woman whose life is a mess. Ellie finally tells her what happened with her and Gene: She had an affair with one of Gene’s friends, and though it was years ago, he recently found out. The affair only lasted five weeks, but it took down a 29-year marriage. Kirsten is unsympathetic toward her mother.

Julia, Charlie, and Kirsten are shocked when Claudia’s very-much-real boyfriend shows up at the house. It’s only then that Claudia realizes that everyone thought she was lying. Bailey and Will bicker over whose fault their problems are, and how the car breaking down shouldn’t disrupt their plans to have a good time. Yes, even though they won’t be able to get the car fixed until the next day.

Julia and Griffin go out, and one of Griffin’s comments makes Julia realize that he did read her letters. That means he knew she and Justin broke up in the spring and didn’t do anything. She thinks that means he doesn’t want to be with her. Julia makes mad face. Griffin makes emo face. Kirsten and Charlie have now switched positions on whether Ellie can stay – Kirsten wants her out, but Charlie thinks they should work things out. The road trippers have to stay in a horrible hotel, which the girls complain about. They secretly plan to make an escape in the morning.

Claudia’s upset with her family for thinking she was lying about Byron. She gets a little overdramatic about how she has feelings for boys, whether the others think she does or not. In Mexico, the girls have taken off, and the guys are making plans to go to a cockfight. Well, Bailey’s making plans – Will is making a list of things he needs to pack for college. Back home, Charlie tries to sympathize with Ellie over having made mistakes and trying to make up with people they love. Ellie refuses to see any similarities between them.

Griffin tracks Julia down and tells her he read all of her letters multiple times; he kept waiting for her to write that she missed him or loved him. He was disappointed that she wrote to him like a friend, and he didn’t know what she was thinking about him. Julia tells him it’s okay if he wants to put a picture of her by his bed. Bailey and Will try to find the cockfight, but they no longer have the address.

Ellie makes plans to go back to Chicago and stay with Kirsten’s sister, who she guesses will also be mad about the affair. She tells Kirsten that she doesn’t understand how Kirsten could forgive Charlie after all the things he’s done that have hurt her. Kirsten says it’s because she loves him, so Ellie asks why her love for her own mother can’t lead to forgiveness, too. Kirsten replies that Ellie hasn’t forgiven Charlie, which is apparently the same as her not being able to forgive Ellie. I don’t know.

Bailey and Will manage to find the cockfight, but afterward, they discover that Bailey’s Jeep is missing. Will blames Bailey, since he took them on a stupid adventure. Bailey yells at him for not wanting to be adventurous. Of course, this is all masking his real anger over Will being able to go away to college while Bailey has to stay in San Francisco. Julia and Griffin go parking, and there’s kissing, but Griffin is tentative, which ticks Julia off. He admits that he’s scared because there’s nothing keeping them apart anymore, and if things don’t work out, Griffin won’t have anything.

The road trip is cut short, and Bailey returns to San Francisco in time for some end-of-summer bonfire on the beach. Julia doesn’t care that the Jeep was stolen because she’s too busy thinking about Griffin. She’s trying to be optimistic about moving on. Ellie goes by the restaurant on her way to the airport so she can tell Charlie she hopes he and Kirsten stay happy. She promises to stop being nasty about their relationship. Charlie doesn’t think that’s enough: He wants her to give him credit for trying to make things work. “I hope that my husband loves me as much as my daughter loves you,” Ellie says.

Bailey meets up with Sarah and laments that his “last hurrah” with Will went so badly. She suggests that the two of them have their own road trip in a few weeks. She’d like to be Bailey’s best friend since he’s hers. Claudia and Byron hang out at the bonfire, and she appreciates having a boyfriend who loans her his jacket when it gets cold.

Will arrives to make up with Bailey, saying he admires that Bailey has already grown up, while Will’s trying to catch up. (Well, Will, if you’d like, we can kill your parents and see how that works out for you.) Blah blah, they’re still friends. Griffin finds Julia at the bonfire and tries to be casual, but she’s mad at him for always coming back into her life and then leaving again. He promises that this time, he’s sticking around.

Thoughts: Byron is played by Rider Strong, so nice work, Claudia.

Aw, who would cheat on Nicholas Pryor?

Ellie, if you hate Charlie so much, go find a hotel. Also, shut up.

Bailey drinks beer twice in this episode. And so it begins….

June 9, 2013

Party of Five 2.9, The Wedding: Run Away, Little Boy

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , , , , , at 5:11 pm by Jenn

This is exactly what I want my wedding day to look like

This is exactly what I want my wedding day to look like

Summary: The Salinger house is all set up for Charlie and Kirsten’s wedding. Charlie doesn’t look the least bit excited. Kirsten is already in her dress but is crying in the bedroom because her sister isn’t able to come to the wedding. Also, her parents are running late. Kirsten worries that something else will happen, since bad things always occur in threes. Charlie gives her the third piece: He wants to postpone the wedding six months.

He’s feeling anxious and trapped, and something in him says that getting married right now is a bad idea. “I’m not ready for the rest of my life to start today,” he says. Kirsten thinks that Charlie’s just tired and hungover from his bachelor party, and that he just needs a little time to get himself together. And by “a little time,” she means half an hour. When Charlie hesitates again, she tells him that he just has to meet her at the altar and make a promise.

The other Salingers take care of reception arrangements as Ross, Sarah, and Will arrive. Sarah and Bailey both think Will’s outfit is ridiculous for a wedding. Ellie and Gene finally make it to the house, so Kirsten decides it’s time for pictures. Julia goes to retrieve Charlie, who is clean-shaven for the first time in the series. She notices that he’s nervous but doesn’t think it’s a big deal.

As the pictures start, Justin arrives to drop off a present from his mom. He doesn’t think Julia still wants him there, since she invited him before they broke up. Then he decides to stay so he doesn’t have to be at home with his father. During the picture-taking, Charlie grows more and more anxious until he finally runs off.

Kirsten follows him and he tries to tell her again that he’s not ready to get married. She thinks he’s just nervous and is having the same feelings everyone has before getting married. He just needs to go downstairs and say, “I do.” Charlie can’t do it – it means he’ll live in his parents’ house and take care of his brothers and sisters and work at the restaurant for the rest of his life. He’ll never be able to make another decision for himself.

Kirsten takes this to mean that he doesn’t want to be with her. Charlie corrects that he just needs time to think about everything. Kirsten points out that there are a bunch of people waiting for a wedding. He needs to take a deep breath and follow through. Again, he says no.

The bride and groom announce that the wedding’s off, so of course everyone wants to know what happened, especially Gene. Charlie doesn’t want to talk to anyone. Bailey takes over as resident mature adult, saying he’ll explain things to the minister and pay everyone. He notes bitterly that this is the first time in a while that he’s had to clean up a mess Charlie made.

Ellie is sure that Charlie will come around; he’s clearly not thinking rationally. Meanwhile, Kirsten breaks down. Julia confides in Justin that she’s trying to figure out how to convince Charlie to change his mind. He offers to be her sounding board, as if they’re friends again. She declines the offer but asks him to stay with her. Bailey tries to negotiate the caterer’s payment but just winds up with a bunch of shrimp. Ellie’s in denial that the whole thing is over.

Julia finally figures out what to say to Charlie, but it’s basically just begging him not to call off the wedding. She tells him no one understands what he’s doing. He knows that he’s being horrible to Kirsten, and he doesn’t want to hurt her. Defeated, Julia grabs a bottle of champagne and goes off to drink it with Justin.

Kirsten tries to talk herself into going along with Charlie’s idea to just postpone for a few months. Ellie tells her that if she wants to get married today, she should. She needs to tell Charlie that this is his only chance. Kirsten worries that he’ll say no. “He’s already said no,” Ellie reminds her.

In the basement, Julia and Justin get on the road to Drunkville. He notes that they had their first kiss in the basement when they were kids. They reenact the historic moment, though she remembers it happening somewhere else. Bailey tells Sarah that men in his family always make the same mistake: They walk away from the best thing in their life. He knows that someday, Charlie will regret his decision, but it’ll be too late.

Kirsten takes Ellie’s advice and tells Charlie that they’re either getting married today or they’re breaking up. She knows that if they wait six months, they’ll just replay today. She leaves to give him time to think, but this allows him to run away. Sarah blathers to Will about uncertainty and relationships and decisions and some other crap, which confuses him, since they’ve only been together for three weeks.

Bailey gives Julia the news about Charlie, but she can’t really process it since she’s drunk. Justin grabs another bottle of champagne and they go up to Julia’s room. Kirsten redoes her makeup, making Claudia think that Charlie will come back. She really wants them to be together. Kirsten admits that she doesn’t think he’ll be back.

Bailey asks Will straight out if he loves Sarah. Will doesn’t really know what to say, since, again, they’ve been dating for less than a month. Bailey thinks he himself loves her, so he needs to know where Will stands. Upstairs, a super-drunk Julia and Justin start making out. She asks if he has protection, but it doesn’t look like he makes a move to actually get a condom out of his wallet.

Downstairs, Kirsten tells everyone that the wedding’s really off. Just then, Charlie returns and pulls Kirsten away to tell her he’s changed his mind and wants to get married. If it’s a choice between the wedding and breaking up, he’ll go through with the wedding.

Will pulls Bailey and Sarah into Bailey’s room so they can figure out who wants to be with who. Sarah feels like the guys are competing for her. Bailey says that Will and Sarah care about each other, and he also cares about Will, and also really cares about Sarah. Now everyone’s more confused than before. Julia suddenly sobers up when she realizes that she and Justin just had sex. Claudia knocks on the door to tell her that Charlie’s there and the wedding’s back on.

The ceremony is about to begin but this time the bride isn’t ready. Charlie finds her in her regular clothes, and she tells him that she doesn’t know what else she can give him if he’s not sure he wants to marry her. Charlie promises that he’s sure, but Kirsten knows he’s not. He begs her to marry him. She tells him she’s afraid that one day he’ll come home and say he doesn’t want to be with her anymore. She can’t take the chance that he’ll keep his word not to leave her.

The wedding is called off again, and this time everyone actually leaves. Will tells Bailey that Sarah broke up with him. He could be mad that his girlfriend and best friend want to be together, but he’d rather let it go and keep his best friend. Plus, he thinks Bailey and Sarah are meant to be together. Then Will punches Bailey in the stomach, apologizing for having to do such a guy thing.

Julia isn’t that happy that her first time having sex was at a failed wedding after getting drunk. She wishes she’d been able to look at Justin afterward and know that she wanted to be with him. It would be nice if they were at least still friends. Bailey tells Sarah that when they were together before, it was too soon; when she was with Will, it was too late. Maybe now, the timing is right. They kiss, so I guess that means the timing is right.

That night, Ellie and Gene help Kirsten move her things out of the Salingers’ house. She tells Charlie she’ll be with them in Chicago for a while, then gives him back her engagement ring. They exchange “I love you”s, but she hopes that feeling goes away soon.

Claudia’s really confused about the breakup since she’s sure Charlie loves Kirsten. She decides to save the top of the wedding cake, as per tradition, in hopes that they’ll change their minds again. Bailey goes to talk to Charlie, who thinks he’s in for a lecture. Instead, Bailey promises that he’s on Charlie’s side.

Thoughts: Trivia: Julia’s allergic to shrimp.

No one seems to have any problem with Charlie seeing Kirsten in her wedding dress before the ceremony. I mean, obviously it winds up not mattering, but still.

Why does everyone hang around after the wedding’s cancelled? Go home! There’s no more party! Take some shrimp and get out!

Thanks for showing up for two scenes, Ross.

I remember being so bummed about this episode when it first aired. It’s nice to know that (SPOILER!) Charlie and Kirsten end up getting married in season 6.

May 18, 2013

Party of Five 2.6, Analogies: Detours

Posted in TV tagged , , , , , at 1:16 pm by Jenn

Charlie, hold on to this radio. You're going to really want it in a few years. Trust me on this

Charlie, hold on to this radio. You’re going to really want it in a few years. Trust me on this

Summary: Hey, everyone! Let’s talk about Charlie and Kirsten’s sex life! Isn’t that exactly how you want to start an episode? Fortunately, Bailey interrupts by summoning Kirsten downstairs. But maybe she should have put on more clothes, because her parents, Ellie and Gene, are there for a surprise visit. (Surprise! Your daughter’s not a virgin!) They insist on staying in a hotel, but say it in that way that means they’re expecting to be invited to stay at the house.

Julia and Claudia are supposed to go see a dressmaker after school, but Claudia refuses to let Griffin chauffeur them. Julia goes home instead, just in time for Bailey to open his SAT scores. He got a 900, and Julia gets $5 from Will for correctly guessing that Bailey would get under 950. Bailey’s hurt, but Will points out that he doesn’t need a very high score to get into the college he wants to attend.

Griffin wants to hang out with Claudia, but she’s a brat again. He gives her a bracelet he made her as a peace offering. She throws it back at him, so Julia blasts her for being rude. Claudia tells her she preferred Justin, and since they’re in her house, she gets to choose who she’s nice to. Julia says that whoever she dates is none of Claudia’s business. Also, Claudia’s a brat.

The Salingers play musical rooms to accommodate Ellie and Gene, who reveal that they sleep in separate beds. Kirsten wonders if that means they don’t have sex anymore. Charlie and I are both trying not to think about it. Speaking of sex, Charlie tries to get romantic with Kirsten, which I’m sure she really wants a) after talking about her parents’ love life and b) while they’re in the next room.

Charlie and Gene play golf, and Kirsten and Ellie tag along but don’t play. The men discuss Charlie and Kirsten’s honeymoon in Mexico, though Charlie would like to go to Europe. Gene pushes him to set an actual date; otherwise it’ll never happen. As soon as he retires, he plans to take Ellie to a baseball game in every Major League park. They’ll make a vague route, but let themselves be flexible. Charlie agrees that detours make things interesting.

Bailey wants to transfer out of an advanced class and take woodshop, then go to a state school, giving up his dream of going to college on the East Coast. The teacher whose class he’s transferring out of tells him not to run away just because things got difficult. Charlie and the Bennetts go to Chinatown, but Ellie gets food poisoning, though Kirsten thinks it’s revenge because she didn’t get to choose the restaurant. This means the rest of the day’s plans are ruined. Kirsten comes up with alternate plans, and Charlie tells her she sounds just like her mother.

Claudia extends an olive branch to Griffin, asking if he can help her with a school project. She tells him she and Justin were friends, which is why she’s been so cold to Griffin. Bailey’s teacher has locked her keys in her car, so she asks him for a ride home to get her spares. (Red flag #1). He tells her he’s thinking about retaking the SAT. She quickly offers to tutor him, inviting him to study at her house. (Red flag #2). Then she tells him to call her Maggie. (Red flag #3. Bailey, get out!)

Griffin and Claudia are such good friends now that he invites her to hang out with him and Julia. Julia quickly objects, but Claudia doesn’t seem too hurt. Kirsten and Charlie start talking about their sex life again; she’s trying to convince herself that they’re spontaneous, unlike her mother. Somehow, her list of ways they’re different from her parents leads to sex. I don’t want to think about it.

Maggie tutors Bailey, who notes that she’s the same age as Charlie. Despite all the signs that Maggie is totally crossing the line with this whole situation, she does give Bailey some good encouragement, telling him that he’s not facing anything incredibly difficult, or even that hard. He needs to keep an open mind because sometimes the right answer is the last one you would expect. At home, Charlie appreciates Julia’s efforts to do something Griffin likes by getting tickets to a car show.

Griffin is currently out with Claudia, doing that thing where you make up stories about strangers. She shows him that she’s wearing the bracelet he gave her. Charlie shows Gene a picture of his father and grandfather at Ebbets Field, one of the parks he and Ellie will need to visit before it’s torn down. This is the first Ellie’s heard about Gene’s post-retirement plans. She tells Charlie and Kirsten about Gene’s past plans, which he never saw through. Gene gets annoyed and storms out.

Kirsten is also annoyed, blasting her mother for embarrassing Gene. Ellie says this isn’t the first time he’s told someone they’re selling the house and going on some adventure. Everyone always supports his ideas because he’s a dreamer. Then Ellie has to come in and bring him back to reality. She’s annoyed that he can never make a decision more than a day in advance. Ellie doesn’t like that she’s always been the bad guy with Kirsten and her sister. Kirsten loves Gene, but Ellie made her responsible. She thinks Charlie and Kirsten have a similar relationship.

Griffin and Claudia come home later than planned, which means Julia couldn’t take him to the car show. She complains that she has to jump through hoops to get her own boyfriend’s attention while he tries to make her sister happy. She just wants him to do something for her instead. After Julia kicks Griffin out, Claudia accuses her of being jealous. Julia shoots back that if Claudia has a crush, Griffin’s not interesting. He’s only spending time with her out of pity, because she has no friends. “That is not a date, Claudia, it’s called babysitting,” Julia says.

Bailey takes a practice SAT but gets a 900 again. He thinks Maggie should have listened when he said he wasn’t good at this sort of thing. She reminds him that they only worked for a day. Bailey calls himself dumb and tells her not to lie to herself. He’s resigned himself to go to a state school. Maggie thinks his home life is part of the problem – no one holds him accountable for his actions. When he fails, no one encourages him or tells him he can do better.

Gene tells Charlie that he and Ellie are adding on to their house so they’ll have room for their grandchildren. (I guess Kirsten’s sister will be providing those grandchildren.) He gets his ideas for great adventures from National Geographic, and doesn’t see the harm in daydreaming. That’s good enough for him. Charlie doesn’t think it has to be good enough – he doesn’t have to give up all of his dreams. Gene knows that Ellie’s right, and he doesn’t think it’s so bad to stay in one place. He wonders why it matters so much to Charlie.

Bailey tells Charlie that he’s not going to retake the SAT after all. Charlie tells him he got around a 900, too. Now Bailey doesn’t have to put himself through the stress of the test again. Bailey tries to bait him to have a reaction to a low score, but Charlie doesn’t. He asks if anyone gave him a hard time when he dropped out of college. Charlie says their father did, but no one was surprised, since Charlie failed all the time. Charlie reveals that when the accident happened, he was planning to move home for a semester. Their mother thought he would be able to turn things around.

Griffin gives Julia a necklace, which she thinks is an apology. It actually belonged to Jill, and was the first present he gave her that wasn’t childish. She followed him around when she was a kid, and he got used to having her around. Griffin starts reminiscing, then tells Julia that he’s more used to dealing with a little sister than a girlfriend.

Gene and Kirsten discuss house renovations while Ellie confronts Charlie, who she thinks is mad at her. She thinks Charlie and Gene are a lot alike. She calls them both lost, but Charlie likes to think of himself as “not finished looking yet.” He wants them to figure out what they want and not settle for anything else. He regrets getting involved in Gene and Ellie’s issues.

Julia invites Claudia to hang out with Griffin while she does homework. She admits that she was jealous and apologizes. Claudia says Griffin doesn’t have to babysit her, but he doesn’t see it that way. They play the piano together, and he tells her he used to play growing up (clearly with Jill). The Bennetts got to the airport, and Gene assures Charlie that they’ll stay in a hotel for the wedding. Kirsten and her parents part on good terms.

Kirsten thinks the whole trip went well (Charlie thinks she’s crazy), and she’s pleased to see that her parents are still happy together, even though they just have each other. She understands that because she only needs Charlie. It’s hard to tell, but Charlie might not agree. Bailey writes a college essay about losing people in his life who made him feel like he could do amazing things. He’s trying to remember his mother’s voice so he can feel her encouragement.

Thoughts: All three of this week’s guest stars have been on soaps (Falcon Crest is technically a soap). Gene is played by Nicholas Pryor (AKA Chancellor Arnold on Beverly Hills, 90210), who’s been on a ton of soaps, including Port Charles, where he was a regular. Ellie is played by Kathleen Noone, who’s been on All My Children, Passions, and Sunset Beach. And Maggie is played by Stacy Galina, who was on Falcon Crest.

Guys, LEARN TO SAY NO. There’s no room in the house for guests! Claudia already lives in a freaking tent!

What horrible school is going to let Bailey in with only a 900?

Kirsten’s kind of funny when she’s freaking out. Is that bad?

I’m not a huge Griffin fan, but he’s great with Claudia.

Here’s an analogy: Griffin’s connection with Claudia is to Julia’s connection with Mrs. Thompson.