December 27, 2016
Summary: Valentine’s Day is approaching, as is a Valentine’s Day dance at SVMS. The Unicorns (spurred on by Mandy) are organizing a fundraiser for the local children’s hospital (appropriately named Children’s Hospital) in which students can hire a personal servant for a day or two. Ellen wants to call it Yours for a Day, but the other girls say that’s dumb since the fundraiser takes place over two days. But that’s what the book is called, so I guess Ellen wins in the end. Anyway, for $5 you can hire someone for a day, and for $10 you get someone over two days. The “servants” don’t have to pay, but they also don’t get compensated, so servants are just volunteering out of the kindness of their hearts.
Mandy has a crush on a guy named Peter Jeffries, but she’s too nervous to ask him to the dance. When she calls to talk to him, she just hangs up the phone. Oh, Mandy, we’ve all been there. She also can barely speak to Peter when he comes by the Unicorns’ table to sign up to be a servant. Jessica realizes that if Peter and Mandy (who will be a master) get paired up, she can order him to take her to the dance. How romantic.
At the drawing, Mandy winds up as Jessica’s servant, which Jess is thrilled about. Not only is she paired with a friend (the other girls were worried about being paired with people they don’t like), but she can order Mandy to ask Peter to the dance. The drawback here is that the Unicorns are working as both servants and masters, and Jess winds up as Lloyd Benson’s servant. Lila’s working for Peter, and Janet’s working for Winston. Ha ha!
Lloyd’s annoyed with Jessica for the earthquake stuff in the last book, so he makes her do lots of stuff for him. If Jess were really smart, she would have Mandy do it for her. Instead, she tells Mandy that her only task is to ask Peter to the dance. Mandy manages to pull herself together and do it…but Peter already has a date to the dance. Aw, Mandy. At least he’s nice about having to turn her down.
Still, Mandy feels humiliated and gets mad at Jessica. She gets a little pleasure out of watching Jessica do dumb things on Lloyd’s orders, like eat gross cafeteria food and help him with science experiments. Aaron feels bad for Jess and tries to think of a way to get her switched to him so Lloyd can’t mess with her anymore. Elizabeth correctly guesses that Lloyd won’t agree to a switch since he’s eager to get revenge on Jessica.
Jessica is also hoping to switch, and she even asks Elizabeth to be Lloyd’s servant. Liz balks, but since Jess rigged the drawing for her and Amy (see the B-plot), she eventually agrees. But Lila and Mandy, scheming against Jessica, pull their own switch. Jessica was supposed to work for Belinda, so the girls get Belinda to switch servants with Mandy, making Jessica serve Mandy instead. In the meantime, Aaron convinces Lloyd to switch with him, thinking he’d get Jessica. Now he has Elizabeth as a servant.
The usually-not-vindictive Mandy makes Jessica sing “Feelings” in the cafeteria so she’ll be humiliated like she inadvertently humiliated Mandy. The song makes Grace Oliver cry, but not from horribleness. She and Winston had been going out, or whatever the 12-year-old equivalent of that is, but they had a huge fight and aren’t speaking. Grace asked Peter to the dance, but now she wants to make up with Winston and go with him. Jessica realizes that she has the opportunity to make everyone happy.
She goes to Lloyd, who’s Grace’s master for the day, and gets him to switch servants with Winston. Winston thinks he’s getting Jessica as a servant, but he’s getting Grace. They quickly make up and will be going to the dance together. Half of Jess’ plan is a success, even though the switch means Lloyd will be Janet’s master.
Jessica tries to negotiate with Lila to get her to make Peter, her new servant, ask Mandy to the dance. Lila wants too much in return, so Jess just calls Peter on her own. But it turns out that her work is done, and Mandy and Peter have already decided to go to the dance together. Once Peter learned that Grace was going with Winston, he asked Mandy, the person he’d wanted to go with in the first place. He wasn’t sure Mandy liked him, but once Jessica made her ask him to the dance, he realized she did. So Jess’ meddling helped a couple get together!
The new couple has a great time at the dance, and the master/servant fundraiser makes $800 for the hospital. Jessica’s the only one who’s not happy at the end, since Janet makes Lloyd a certificate entitling him to another day of servitude from Jessica. I guess it’s a small price to pay for a successful fundraiser.
In the B-plot, Elizabeth and Amy are annoyed with Todd and Ken, who are just acting like typical preteen boys. They play a prank on the boys, getting them to eat mayo instead of vanilla pudding. They think this makes them even, especially when the guys send the girls on a scavenger hunt for what the girls think will be invitations to the dance. They get the invitations, but they also get drenched with cold water. The girls decide they need more revenge.
Elizabeth and Amy get Jessica to rig the master/servant drawing so Todd will be Liz’s servant and Ken will be Amy’s. Then they make the guys do things like wear embarrassing ties, walk on their hands in the cafeteria, and give the wrong answers in class. The guys handle things well, and still want to take the girls to the dance. They’re even going to get them corsages. The girls think they’ve learned their lesson and are going to be gentlemen from now on.
On Valentine’s Day, the girls spend most of the dance sneezing. They figure out that the guys got one last revenge by putting sneezing powder in their corsages. The girls get revenge right back by making them sing “Feelings” in front of everyone. I guess this evens things up, as the pranks stop. The girls were definitely winning that war anyway.
Thoughts: Grace is in a lot more books than I remembered. I really didn’t think she was ever mentioned again after The Big Camp Secret.
I can’t believe Amy and Elizabeth didn’t think the guys might try to get them back after everything they had to do as servants. I would expect Elizabeth to be smarter than that.
“Daddy would give more, but he already donated a whole wing to the hospital, and he didn’t want to overdo it.” Oh, of course not. There’s such a thing as helping too many sick children.
October 4, 2016
Summary: Believe it or not, but even though it seemed like there was a dance in every SVH book, the SVT crew has yet to have one. Their first is coming up, and the girls are worried that the boys will be their usual annoying, immature selves. New girl Veronica Brooks would be especially disappointed if that happened. You see, at Veronica’s old school, the boys were all charming and intelligent and clearly alien life forms because there’s no such thing as a mature 12-year-old boy.
Todd asks Elizabeth to the dance, and Veronica’s totally jealous. Amy hopes Ken will ask her, since they’re basically dating, but Ken is an idiot in this book and doesn’t get that his sort-of girlfriend might want to do something girlfriend-y with him. When the Unicorns graciously hold an “open meeting,” which is basically a crash course on style, Amy attends so she can get some pointers on making herself girlier so Ken will want to take her to the dance. The Unicorns happily take on Amy as a project. I don’t know why they care whether a girl they don’t even like has a date with a guy they don’t like, but okay.
Amy wears some eye makeup to school, and I guess it’s a pretty bad application because Ken thinks she was in a fight. So did Amy try to do her own makeup, or did the Unicorns overdo it on purpose? Discuss. Either way, later Ken does ask her to the dance, but he’s really casual about it and doesn’t want it to seem like a date. Amy will take it. Meanwhile, Veronica’s mad that Elizabeth keeps outscoring her on tests, because at her old school, Veronica was the best student (and, I imagine, also the most popular and the prettiest and the best athlete and the best singer and…). Also, she likes Todd.
The night of the dance, a bunch of girls get ready together at the Wakefields’. Remember middle-school dances, you guys? My friends and I got ready together, too. Then when high school came around, we skipped all the dances except homecoming and prom because we realized how boring they were. Anyway, everyone has a date, and the guys all come by the house to pick up their girls, which is cute. Todd gives Elizabeth a heart-shaped locket with their pictures inside.
Even though Aaron is Jessica’s date to the dance, she accepts a dance with Bruce. One dance turns into many dances, and Aaron is effectively ditched. Then Veronica steals Todd away from Elizabeth, so Liz and Aaron are stuck on the sidelines, watching their dates with other people. Jessica and Bruce even kiss on the dance floor! Elizabeth tries to comfort Aaron by dancing with him, and they end up kissing, too. They’re outside, so at least they’re not giving the whole school a show…but Caroline Pearce sees them, so that event isn’t going to stay secret for long.
Indeed, by Monday morning, rumors are flying that Elizabeth and Aaron kissed. Todd confronts Elizabeth, who blasts him for spending so much of the dance with Veronica. He argues that he was just trying to be nice, like, one dance with her is nice enough, Todd. They end up having a big fight, as do Jessica and Aaron. Then Jess confronts her sister, and the two of them fight about Jess treating Aaron badly, and how Liz kissed her sister’s guy. No one comes off looking great.
Elizabeth and Aaron have lunch together, as do Todd and Veronica. It’s clear that they’re all trying to make each other jealous. Amy thinks everyone’s nuts. Jess starts hanging out with Bruce, who’s at his Bruceiest in this book. We always hear about how self-centered he is, and it’s really apparent here. He expects Jess to laugh at all his jokes, and for everyone to talk about how awesome he is. Ohhhhhh. Bruce is Donald Trump. I get it.
That night, Aaron calls the Wakefields’ house, and there’s a fun moment where Ned offers the phone to Jessica and is shocked when Aaron wants to talk to Elizabeth. He’s not much of a conversationalist on the phone, as most middle-school girls can confirm about their middle-school boyfriends. Bruce also calls Jessica, but again, he just wants to talk about himself, so she’s not as thrilled anymore about having a popular seventh-grader interested in her.
Jessica wants revenge on Elizabeth, and who better to help her than Liz’s new #1 enemy, Veronica? Veronica changes a bunch of answers on Elizabeth’s math homework so her grade will be lower than Veronica’s. She wants to read Liz’s diary, too, but Jessica doesn’t want to go that far. Instead, Veronica steals something from Elizabeth’s room, though Jess doesn’t see what it is. The next day, Elizabeth is shocked to learn that she failed her math homework. Veronica changed a lot more answers than Jessica expected, and Jess isn’t happy.
Also not happy: Amy, who’s trying a new look to attract Ken. The Unicorns give her a makeover, styling and dressing her like a hippie. Ken thinks she’s sticking it to Valentine’s Day (which is coming up) by acting like it’s Halloween instead. He still wants to go to Ellen’s Valentine’s Day party with her, though. Jess will be going with Bruce, and Liz is going with Aaron. But the twins have realized they want to get each other back together with their original boyfriends, and they’ve separately decided that the party is the place to do it. Neither twin realizes it, but they’ve both decided to pull a classic twin switch.
Liz also wants to make up with Todd, and thinks wearing her locket is a good way to indicate that, but she can’t find it. Then Veronica shows up to the party wearing one just like it. Amy sees her first and thinks this means Todd is moving on from Elizabeth. Jessica, meanwhile, is at the end of her rope with Bruce. He can’t believe she didn’t notice that he parted his hair on the left instead of the right! Bruce in this scene reminds me of Joey from 10 Things I Hate About You. Through all this, Amy and Ken are fighting because he thinks Valentine’s Day is dumb, and she doesn’t want to admit that she likes all the heart-shaped stuff at the party.
The twins quickly get to work on their switch, though they still have no idea that they’re both up to the same plot. “Jessica” makes up with Aaron pretty easily, but “Elizabeth” takes longer with Todd. He gets really awkward and clumsy when he sees “Elizabeth,” making Jessica think that he still likes her. Also, the only thing she can think of to talk to him about is books.
Amy tells “Elizabeth” that Todd gave Veronica a locket just like Liz’s, and Jessica realizes that it’s really Liz’s locket – that’s what Veronica stole from her room. “Elizabeth” calls Veronica out, and they end up in a little shoving match. Once it’s over, the twins switch back and make up with their boyfriends. (Also, they catch Amy and Ken making out.) Veronica, however, is angry (even though she ends up with Bruce), and she tells Jessica she’s going to get revenge. Hell hath no fury like a 12-year-old girl scorned.
Thoughts: Veronica: “At my old school, I was one of the in crowd. We were really wild. We didn’t just have geeky school dances – we had real kissing parties.” Wow. Wild.
The local drugstore has a soda fountain. What year is this?
“[The Unicorns are] all obsessed with this romance stuff. It’s like they’re always trying to get guys to say mushy things. That’s why I like hanging out with you, Amy. You never do stuff like that. It’s almost like being with another guy.” KEN. STOP TALKING.
“You still love to read. I love to read. We both love to read. That’s why we have so much in common.” You stop talking, too, Jessica.
December 5, 2015
Summary: Dylan and Steve are hanging out at the Beverly Royale, planning to watch a basketball game together. Josie shows up to tell Dylan that she thinks Shane may have kidnapped Noah to try to force Dylan to bail him out with his drug dealer. He knows a lot about Dylan, including the fact that he has a goddaughter. Steve and Dylan head off to look for Noah, checking to make sure Maddy’s okay.
Over at the beach apartment, Matt tries to talk Kelly into appearing on a show called Lover’s Lane with him. It sounds like a Newlywed Game-type show, where couples answer questions about each other. Dylan and Steve call around, looking for Noah, but Kelly and David haven’t seen him. Steve and Dylan don’t mention that he might be in danger. They head to the After Dark and find Noah’s car with the keys still in it and the windshield busted.
Shane and his future codefendant have taken Noah to a warehouse/apartment to make a ransom video. If Shane doesn’t get his money from Dylan, Noah dies. Donna asks David to run the boutique the next day – Valentine’s Day – with Camille. He agrees, then asks for Donna’s advice on whether or not to get Camille a cashmere sweater. Donna thinks he should stick to a handmade card, like one he once gave her. Donna’s not looking forward to spending the holiday as Matt and Kelly’s fifth wheel.
Dylan meets up with Josie and warns that she’ll go to jail with her brother if she doesn’t provide some information. Dylan uses Josie’s phone to leave Shane a message to get in touch with him. Gina tells Donna that their father called her for the first time since Christmas and invited her to dinner. Donna thinks he waited until Felice was out of town to reach out. Gina’s annoyed that she’s being fit into his life. Donna reminds her that Dr. Martin is a great guy.
Kelly, Matt, and Janet watch Lover’s Lane, discussing the show’s trainwreck guests. Janet and Donna are excited to get Matt and Kelly ready for their appearance. Kelly gets on board when she learns how much money they could win. Gina has dinner with Dr. Martin, addressing her mother’s claim that it was his idea to keep her paternity quiet. Dr. Martin says it was Bobbi’s idea. Gina notes that he went along with it. She wishes she’d had a father to cheer her on at skating competitions. They discuss what she should call him, and he suggests John.
Shane finally calls Dylan and demands a million dollars for Noah’s return. He emails the ransom video (it’s in Quicktime, hee), in which Shane plays Russian roulette with his hostage. Later, Steve watches the video and urges Dylan to work with the cops. Dylan says he’s going to hand over the money without getting the authorities involved. Steve’s concerned that Dylan’s “superhero complex” will put someone in danger.
Kelly, Matt, Donna, and Janet head to Lover’s Lane, where the couple will be competing with an annoying couple who dressed alike. Kelly doesn’t feel well, and it seems like something other than nerves. Donna decides to take Kelly’s place, so there’s your Donna wackiness for the week. Shane leaves Noah alone with his coconspirator, who’s not as smart as Shane. The coconspirator agrees to turn up the TV, which allows Noah to try to free himself from the pipe he’s chained to.
Gina brings Dr. Martin some groceries, but she quickly realizes that she went shopping for someone whose tastes she’s not familiar with. Dr. Martin wants to work on their relationship, not realizing that his failure to reach out to her more has made her so upset. On Lover’s Lane, “Kelly” correctly answers a question about Matt and the real Kelly’s favorite place to have sex, other than the bedroom. Janet finds it very interesting that Donna knows the answer to a question like that, as well as details of a game Matt and Kelly play called Attorney-Client Privilege.
David and Camille hold down the fort at the boutique, where she gets a visit from a guy named Rick. While Camille chats with Rick, David rings up a customer who’s spending a lot of money on his girlfriend. The guy points out that he can’t just get her a card. David sees Rick give Camille a watch, then take her off somewhere. Matt’s final question is who Kelly’s best friend is. He names himself, which is definitely the wrong answer (it’s Donna, of course). They lose.
Dylan gets a million dollars together, then meets up with Josie, declining Steve’s offer to come along. Steve reminds him not to do anything stupid. As Josie takes Dylan to her car, she pulls a gun on him. Shane appears with his own gun, and the siblings force Dylan into a van. The ride home from Lover’s Lane is tense, and Kelly and Matt’s new breadmaker is no consolation. Matt would like to know if there’s anything Kelly hasn’t told people about their love life.
Shane and Josie ignore Dylan as he warns that Steve will call the police when he doesn’t get in touch, and they’ll get busted. Gina goes to the boutique looking for Donna but instead finds David trying to figure out the Camille/Rick situation. (They’ve now been gone for almost three hours.) Gina’s like, “Yeah, they’re probably hooking up somewhere.” She tells David to give Donna the message that she tried but failed, as she always does.
At the beach apartment, Kelly rants to Donna about how annoying Valentine’s Day is. Donna admits that Matt should be Kelly’s best friend, so he’s justified in being mad. Kelly calls Donna her “safety net.” Donna says she can confide in Kelly, but Kelly has a pretty great guy she can talk to now. Dr. Martin goes to see Gina and ask for a second chance. She tells him she hates calling him John, so he invites her to call him “Dad.” She tries it out and decides she likes it.
Josie and Shane take Dylan to the warehouse and chain him up with Noah. Shane has decided that he might as well go ahead and kill the guys, since he’s facing a lengthy prison sentence anyway. Camille returns to the boutique and explains that Rick is her ex, and he always tries to win her back with nice things on Valentine’s Day. She’d prefer simple, personal things, like the handmade card David decides to give her after all. He pretends he bought Camille’s present for Erin.
Donna calls Dr. Martin and learns that Gina’s been putting him through a workout. He suggests that both daughters have dinner with him for Valentine’s Day. Dylan and Noah manage to free themselves and overpower Shane’s coconspirator. Josie tries to talk Shane out of killing the guys, but he says they don’t have a choice.
As Shane’s gassing up the van, Josie notices Dylan rushing him and tries to warn him. Fighting ensues as the gas tank overflows. Josie gets everyone to stop by firing her gun into the air. But the gas is approaching her discarded cigarette, leading to a fire. Dylan subdues the kidnappers while Noah grabs the ransom money from the van just before it explodes.
Kelly apologizes to Matt for oversharing with Donna and not confiding in him more. She gives him one of her journals so he can know more about her. Matt returns it, wanting her to be able to keep some things to herself. Besides he’s not going to let her read his. Now it’s time for a game of Attorney-Client Privilege. As Dylan and Noah let Steve know they’re okay, Donna arrives at her parents’ house. Gina finds Dr. Martin unconscious on the floor, and the sisters rush to get their father medical attention.
Thoughts: Brian Austin Green directed this episode. Some of his shots aren’t that great.
Lover’s Lane is hosted by one Mr. Ryan “I Paid Good Money for These Frosted Tips” Seacrest.
No, show, don’t kill off the only really good character!
See, kids? Smoking really is dangerous.
June 13, 2015
Summary: Dylan surprises Gina at the house of a client (she’s a personal trainer), pretending he needs her because his drug cravings are really bad. He really just wants to have sex. At the Beverly Beat, Steve and David are “interviewing” models so they can publish photos of hot women in the paper. Janet hates the idea before she even finds out what it is.
Gina makes Dylan go for a run so he can fight his cravings in a way that doesn’t involve stripping in a stranger’s house. She takes him to her elementary school and complains about a girl who beat her in a skating competition. She hates coming in second. Noah’s planning an early Valentine’s Day date with Donna at the Bel Age, since he has to work on the actual holiday.
David asks Donna to go to his station manager’s Valentine’s party as his date; since he gives relationship advice, he needs to pretend he’s in an actual relationship. Donna objects, even though Noah did this exact thing with a woman and she was fine with it. Steve tans in the office, for some reason, and while Janet’s putting sunscreen on him, she notices a mole on his back that looks like Al Gore. She suggests that he see a doctor.
Donna finds the photos Gina and Noah took in the photo booth and confronts them over their closeness. Noah uses the drunk defense, like that makes it okay. At the boutique, Matt ambushes Kelly to tell her that Lauren has schizophrenia and has only recently been able to function. He never expected her to be that way again. He loves both women, and he doesn’t know what to do.
Lauren cooks breakfast for Matt while talking about how great it would be for a bunch of female singers to go on tour together. Matt gives her the good news about the Lilith Fair. Lauren forgets to actually toast the French toast, so she’s not completely recovered. She tells Matt that she lost her wedding ring, but he tells her it was taken from her when she was hospitalized, in case she used the diamond to hurt herself.
Steve sees a dermatologist who basically tells him he’s an idiot for not being more careful with sunscreen. Thanks, Doc! Noah accuses Gina of being happy that Donna’s upset about their pictures. Gina pretends she’s glad that the truth is out, and now she doesn’t have to keep Noah’s secret anymore. You know, that they slept together. (Which didn’t happen, but Noah doesn’t know that because he drank so much that he blacked out.)
Gina tries to spend time with Dylan, but he wants to take a night off so he can sleep. She starts to take off her shirt, asking him to beg her to spend the night with him. They’re in the After Dark parking lot in broad daylight, by the way. Nat, who does not get paid enough to have to deal with these insane people, narrowly misses catching Gina taking her bra off.
Kelly cleans her things out of Matt’s room at the Walshes’ house, asking him to tell her what he wants. He says he wants Lauren to be okay, but he also wants to be with Kelly. Noah brings flowers to the boutique to try to make up with Donna. She tells him she’s going to David’s party whether he likes it or not.
Steve’s potential health crisis has made him realize that he hasn’t done anything with his life. He’s worried that he’s ruined his chances with Janet. Kelly tells Dylan about the Matt situation, and how he said he loved her, but also said he loves Lauren. Dylan can sympathize with Matt for having to move on after losing his wife. Kelly wants Matt back. The next day, Kelly gets Matt’s Valentine’s Day gift, a keychain for the key he was going to give her.
Janet spends the night with Steve, who wants to do something important in case he doesn’t have another chance. She urges him to do something that will last a long time. David and Donna go to the party with the intention of pretending that they met at a poetry meeting and have only been dating for a few months. The station manager’s wife says they seem like they’ve known each other for years. They kiss for a picture, and clearly there are still some feelings there.
Kelly asks Matt to make a decision between her and Lauren already. He can’t. Steve hands out umbrellas as part of his promotion for the Beverly Beat‘s new bathing-suit-photo feature. He instructs everyone to strip and check each other for skin cancer. Janet’s like, “Good job? I guess?” After the party, David and Donna head to the After Dark, where they kiss in his car. They quickly decide they need to be around other people.
Inside, the trio Wild Orchid performs. Donna apologizes to Noah for thinking he’d done something with Gina (which, of course, he thinks he did). Steve’s doctor has the results of his biopsy, but Steve wants to wait until the next day to call him, so he can have what might be his last night of fun. He reminds Janet that she urged him to make something lasting, so how about a baby? “Not right now,” she foreshadows.
Gina and Dylan go out for a nice dinner, but he’d rather have sex than a nice conversation. He gets them kicked out with a loud performance of “When the Saints Go Marching In.” Lauren drops by the boutique to ask Kelly to let her have Matt. She’s lost three years of her life, and she has to rely on Kelly to get everything back. Neither woman finds the situation very fair.
Steve gets his results, which are negative. Janet wants to reward him with sex, but he’d rather hang out with the models from the Beverly Beat. Dylan tries to make out with Gina in a park, but a passerby thinks he’s assaulting her. Gina complains that Dylan only treats her as a sex object. If she doesn’t always do what he wants, she comes in second. She just wants to know that he cares about her.
Noah gets Wild Orchid to stay late at the club to play a special set for Donna. They dance, though Donna doesn’t like flaunting their relationship in front of David. Noah wonders why she changed her mind about the photos so easily. Donna, of course, doesn’t tell him that she can relate to being in a situation where you kiss someone you’re not with.
Later that night, at the beach apartment, Gina and Noah taunt each other, and she continues to claim that they almost hooked up. Meanwhile, David mopes alone at the After Dark, broadcasting his thoughts about Valentine’s Day on the radio. The holiday is nice for declaring your love, but for single people, it’s a reminder of what you don’t have. At the Walshes’, Kelly tells Matt that she’s taking herself out of the competition. Lauren wins, and Kelly comes in a distant second.
Thoughts: Wild Orchid contains two people from one of my favorite childhood shows, Kids Incorporated. Oh, and one of them is Fergie.
’90s music alert: Lit’s “My Own Worst Enemy.”
Janet needs a Steve-tervention. She deserves better.
Call me crazy, but maybe Gina would stop feeling like Dylan only sees her as a sex object if she did anything other than just have sex with him? Like, don’t take off your shirt in a parking lot and invite him to bed if you want to do something else?
December 7, 2014
Summary: It’s the morning after David’s performance with Jasper’s Law at the After Dark, and he and Valerie are both happy. She’s especially happy to have a boyfriend for Valentine’s Day. Then David gets even happier when he hears his song on the radio. Now Valerie’s not so happy, since it’s the song he wrote for Donna, but she pretends everything’s awesome.
Donna also hears the song, but Noah wants to turn it off since it’s distracting her from their naked fun times. Donna calls to congratulate David on the accomplishment, but hangs up when Valerie answers the phone. David calls her back, pretending that his morning isn’t totally ruined. He’s having a housewarming party that night, and Kelly invites Jeff to attend with her as a lead-up to spending Valentine’s Day together.
At the Beverly Beat, Brandon and Steve pretend they’re not bummed not to have dates for Valentine’s Day. Janet’s smart enough not to buy it. Steve misses college dating, where you could throw a frat party and immediately find a new girlfriend. Janet knows someone who might be interested in one of the guys, and Brandon wins the game of Rock Paper Scissors to get the chance at a date.
At the After Dark, Valerie meets Noah’s brother Josh, who she didn’t realize existed. The brothers clearly hate each other, and Noah doesn’t have great feelings about their father either. He resists Josh’s efforts to reach out to him. That night, the gang goes to David’s for his housewarming party, where Brandon is civil but chilly toward Jeff. Kelly tells Jeff she’s looking forward to Valentine’s Day with him, and will spend the night with him in a hotel.
Valerie and Noah go outside to mope, and she reveals to him that her father committed suicide and her mother blamed her. Noah tells her that he and Josh have the same father but different mothers. Papa Hunter left Josh’s mother for Noah’s, so Josh always resented his brother. He contested Noah’s trust fund as soon as it kicked in. Valerie knows what it’s like to hate a family member, but after her dad died, she wished things had been different. Noah refuses to stop hating Josh.
Donna tells Steve that she met a model who’s interested in going on a date with him. Then she tries to make conversation with Val, who’s upset that she called that morning. Valerie asks if Noah minded the call. Donna tells her to stop thinking about Noah and be happy that she has David. Meanwhile, Noah asks David if he should be worried about David and Donna’s friendship. David doesn’t think he’s given Noah any reason not to trust him.
Brandon and Kelly discuss Valentine’s plans, and as soon as the clock strikes midnight and it’s officially Valentine’s Day, Brandon sneaks in Kelly’s first kiss of the holiday (just on the cheek, though). Later in the morning, Josh goes back to the After Dark to ask Noah to be his best man at his upcoming wedding. Noah doesn’t want to go home with him since he’ll get sucked back into the Hunter business. Josh admits that he wants to be like his brother. Noah invites him to stick around.
David helps Donna buy Noah’s Valentine’s Day present, admitting that they haven’t told their significant others who they’re with. David would rather keep their friendship quiet so their “insecure” partners won’t feel so insecure. Brandon returns some of Kelly’s things to her at the clinic, playing She Loves Me, She Loves Me Not with a daisy. He admits that, despite his blind date that night, he still thinks there’s hope for him and Kelly. The daisy finishes on “she loves me.”
On the way home from their shopping trip, David beats himself up for not telling Valerie where he spent the day. Donna points out that Val and Noah made the situation into a problem. David suggests that they lie low for a little while. A car cuts Donna off, causing a crash, and she injures her back but declines to go to the hospital. Now David’s late for his date with Valerie, who’s waiting at the After Dark. She and Noah are unhappy to see their significant others arrive together.
Brandon leaves a message on Kelly’s machine instead of going to meet his date, Stephanie. She ends up chatting with Steve instead. Steve, by the way, now has a second date lined up, thanks to Nat. Elsewhere, Kelly learns that Jeff was offered a job in San Francisco. He’s willing to stay in Beverly Hills if Kelly wants him to. Brandon leaves a bunch more messages for Kelly, so maybe she should change her number.
Steve meets his real date, then ditches her when Stephanie wants some company. Noah gets drunk and nags Donna about all the time she’s been spending with David. She admits that they kissed once. Steve is cornered by both of his dates, plus Brandon’s, and escapes by sending them to talk to David. While they’re occupied, another woman grabs Steve’s arm and asks him to pretend to be her date so she can escape her own blind date. Then she leaves without telling him who she is.
Brandon leaves more messages for Kelly, wrapping up the one-sided conversation by saying he’s going to move on. Back at the After Dark, Valerie tells Josh what’s going on with her, Noah, David, and Donna, the latter two of whom have left to pick up a prescription for painkillers. Josh suggests that he and Valerie drink a toast to trust. He knocks her purse off the bar, and while she’s picking it up, he puts something in her drink.
Kelly and Jeff go to their hotel room, which he’s decorated with daisies. They make her think of Brandon, and she decides she can’t sleep with Jeff. He warns that Brandon will just hurt her again, but Kelly wants to be with the person she still loves. Noah and Valerie continue drinking, thinking Donna and David have left together to have sex. They head to the office, with Josh, who’s on the phone, unable to stop them from having sex.
In the morning, Noah insists that he and Valerie keep their mouths shut about their night together. Valerie doesn’t get why she’s so out of it, since she only had one drink. David shows up looking for Valerie, and Noah says she spent the night in the office because she got drunk. David assures him that he and Donna didn’t spend the night together. He can quickly see that something’s not right with Valerie and rushes her to a doctor.
Brandon thinks Steve is crazy to let his three Valentine’s dates get away just because he wanted to hang out with his mystery woman. He thinks Cupid is messing with both of them. Steve gets pulled over and tries to tell the police officer that he’s rushing to get an organ transplant. Surprise, surprise – the cop is his mystery woman. She tells him he ran a stop sign but she’ll let him go with a warning. Steve asks for her number, then tells Brandon he was wrong about Cupid.
Valerie’s doctor tells her that she maybe have been given Rohypnol, so if she had sex the night before, it might not have been consensual. Val knows she had sex with Noah but doesn’t remember it, and doesn’t remember consenting to it. However, she doesn’t think Noah would rape her. The doctor points out that lots of women are raped by guys they know.
Kelly goes to see Brandon, having listened to all of his messages. He confirms that he meant it when he said he was going to move on. She doesn’t get how he could have sex with Emma when he didn’t love her, but she believes that Brandon won’t cheat again. So I guess they’re back together? Noah and Donna make up, deciding to have the date they didn’t get to the night before. While Donna leaves to take painkillers, Josh promises to keep quiet about Noah and Valerie’s night together. Of course, that’s when Valerie and David show up to accuse Noah of raping Val.
Thoughts: Josh is played by Michael Trucco (Battlestar Galactica, Revenge, One Tree Hill, How I Met Your Mother, and recently an episode of Scandal).
Stephanie is played by Nikki Ziering, who was Ian Ziering’s wife at the time.
Ugh, am I going to associate daisies with Brandon from now on?
Okay, Kelly. Here’s where I break out “fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice….”
October 18, 2014
Summary: Griffin is at Bailey and Sarah’s, telling the two of them and Charlie that Ned is abusing Julia. Charlie and Bailey refuse to believe that that’s possible. Charlie thinks Griffin’s just upset because they’re in the middle of the divorce process. Sarah, however, thinks it’s possible; one of the women in her victim support group was also hiding the signs of her abusive relationship. Bailey decides that they should ask Julia straight out. Meanwhile, Valentine’s Day is coming up, and Ned has something special planned for Julia.
Bailey meets with Sullivan, who’s working on a business deal and wants Bailey to work with him. Charlie’s with a psychiatrist to discuss Daphne; the police report his lawyer gave him revealed that she was abandoned by her mother for 18 months when she was three. He thinks that explains why Daphne had so much trouble connecting to Diana. The psychiatrist agrees. Bailey tells Sarah about Sullivan’s deal, which has something to do with partnerships and new locations. The two of them can’t figure out their schedules for a fancy celebratory lunch, so Bailey has it with Owen.
Claudia goes bowling with Cody and his annoying friends, though she’s not dressed for bowling and clearly wants to be anywhere else. She’s upset that this is Cody’s idea of a date. Charlie tells Kirsten that he feels bad about the things he said to Daphne, since he now knows why she acted the way she did. He thinks it would help her to know what happened to her when she was a kid. Kirsten is skeptical that the information will magically make Daphne want to come back.
Charlie then goes to Julia’s with Bailey so they can talk to her about what Griffin told them. Julia is, unsurprisingly, upset about the accusations and lectures her brothers about getting so involved in her personal life. She tells them that Ned’s always there for her, unlike her busy family and dead parents. Kirsten turns down money from Paul, wanting to get a job and support herself. You know, while she lives in her ex-boyfriend’s house. She tries to get some advice from Charlie, but he’s focused on his plan to go find Daphne.
Bailey’s too busy to meet with Sullivan anywhere than at Owen’s basketball practice. Yes, this is exactly the sort of person Sullivan will want to go into business with. He tells Bailey they need to meet with someone in person to close the deal. Oh, no, Bailey will have to leave Owen for 20 minutes! Cody tries to make up with Claudia by giving her a pick used by a guy who played with Coltrane. He tells her that no one has ever made him feel embarrassed about his friends before; he’s never met someone who made him care that much about how he comes across.
Griffin’s late to sign his divorce papers, and when he arrives, he blasts Julia her for lying to Charlie and Bailey about Ned. He refuses to sign the papers unless Julia promises that she and Ned are over. Julia tries to find away to get divorced without Griffin’s cooperation. Kirsten questions Charlie’s motives for looking for Daphne – does he just want Diana to have her mother back, or does he want to get back together? She warns that he could shake up her world by telling her about her mother. He needs to give things more thought before he jumps in.
Claudia tries to visit Cody at the record store, but he’s been fired for stealing. Yep, he stole her Valentine’s Day present. Amazingly, there’s a less professional meeting place than a child’s basketball practice: a strip club. The deal is on, but clearly Bailey shouldn’t be working with these people, especially since they look down on him for not drinking with them. Sullivan tells him to lighten up and appreciate what he has.
Griffin ambushes Ned at school and sarcastically congratulates him for fooling everyone about who he is. He orders Ned to stay away from Julia, which is about as successful as you’d expect. Ned boasts that they’re going to spend Valentine’s Day playing strip poker. Griffin responds by punching him in the face a bunch. Cops are called and Julia approves of them arresting Griffin. Charlie takes Diana and goes in search of Daphne, easily tracking her down. She refuses to talk to him, so he throws the information about her mother into her car.
Julia takes Ned to be treated for the wounds Griffin inflicted, apologizing for her ex’s behavior. She says he’s not the sort of person who would get violent. Ned’s like, “And I am?” Claudia gives Cody back the pick and chastises that he was supposed to prove that he was worth her going up against Griffin. Instead, Griffin’s awesome and Cody’s a loser. Sullivan calls Bailey while he’s at Owen’s basketball game, and Bailey ignores the call to focus on his brother.
Griffin calls Julia from jail, begging for her help. He promises that he didn’t visit Ned with the intention of hurting him. “Don’t forget what he did,” he says. Julia hangs up on him. Daphne shows up at Charlie’s hotel room to ask why he gave her the information on her mother. She feels like he’s trying to make a parallel between that and what she did to Diana. Charlie says it’s an explanation for the way she acts. He urges her to trust Diana because she’ll never leave, which means Daphne doesn’t have to protect herself by leaving first.
Daphne does leave, so Charlie decides to go home. Daphne tries to call Charlie later, finding herself unable to talk to him. Bailey talks to Sarah about how he feels torn between family and business. Sarah’s surprised that he’s not 100 percent sold on Sullivan’s deal. Bailey notes that he’s getting chances earlier than most people his age, since he had to grow up so quickly after his parents died. He’s afraid that if he passes things up, they won’t come back around for a while. But he also doesn’t want to miss any time with Owen.
Claudia gets Griffin out of jail and tells him how much the family needs him. Julia takes super-good care of Ned, feeling guilty that Griffin’s the reason he’s hurt. Owen hangs out with Bailey at the restaurant, revealing that he likes spending time there. Bailey tells him that when he’s an adult, he could run the place.
Daphne goes back to Charlie’s hotel room just before he heads home and asks if there was anything in her mother’s police report about a marionette. For years she’s had nightmares about one, and it turns out it’s part of a childhood memory. She doesn’t feel better knowing it was real. As a child, Daphne was told that her mother was gone because she was sick. Now she feels like she doesn’t know anything about her life.
Thoughts: If the writers are going to keep giving Claudia dumb storylines, they should just send her back to boarding school and write her out.
Cody’s been looking very Jesse Pinkman. That’s not good.
Hey, guys, I think Griffin’s redemption arc is complete. He used to be completely likable; now he’s the most sympathetic person on the show.
April 6, 2014
Summary: Kelly wants to start her and Tom’s first Valentine’s Day together with a jog. He’s not as peppy as she is. Valerie calls, so now Kelly isn’t very peppy either. Val tells Tom that she needs him to meet her at the After Dark right away – her mother’s coming in today. Kelly warns Tom that he’s being used, but he considers this enough of an emergency that he needs to ditch her for Valerie. Val then asks Brandon and Tracy to pick her mother up at the airport so she doesn’t have to be alone with her.
Tracy reminds Brandon that it’s Valentine’s Day and asks what he’s getting her. Apparently a Luther Vandross concert at the After Dark isn’t enough. Donna’s been skipping classes since her trauma with Evan, so Clare tries to cheer her up with a trip to the salon. David arrives with Valentine’s Day goodies, and Donna tries to act cheerful. Dick offers Steve some pot before they play golf together, which is the weirdest combination I’ve ever heard of.
At the After Dark, Valerie complains about her mother visiting. She thinks Abby blames her for her father’s death. As Brandon drives Abby home from the airport, she says that she knows Valerie believes Abby blames her. At the After Dark, David and Chloe meet Luther Vandross (Chloe’s opening for him), who’s giving the concert because he owes Mel a favor.
At the beat apartment, Clare again tries to convince Donna to go to the concert. Suddenly there’s something to make Donna want to put some clothes on and fix herself up a little: Cliff has returned! He wants to spend Valentine’s Day with her. Donna and Cliff go for a walk, and she tells him she has a boyfriend. He says that as long as they’re not on the road to marriage, he still has a shot to win her back.
Brandon takes Abby to the After Dark, which Valerie isn’t happy about. (But when is she happy about anything?) She thinks her mother has an ulterior motive. “Like mother, like daughter,” Brandon says. She calls her mother tough and manipulative, which is exactly how people see Val. Valerie says that’s because of Abby. At the beach apartment, Kelly complains to Clare about Valerie summoning Tom away. She still insists she’s not using him.
David stops by to see Donna, who’s out with Cliff. Kelly and Clare cover for her, but Donna and Cliff arrive as he’s leaving. David’s mad that after days of trying to cheer Donna up, she’s suddenly all better now that Cliff’s there. Cliff promises that he didn’t know Donna had a boyfriend. After he leaves, Donna tells David that she hasn’t been in touch with Cliff for months. David chooses to leave in a snit instead of be happy that she’s better.
At the Walshes’, Abby asks for a fresh start with Valerie, then immediately asks her to sign so she can take out a second mortgage on the family house (which Val owns half off). Valerie’s mad that she just came to town for money. She tells Abby to sell it, but Abby wants to keep it. Valerie would rather see the house burned to the ground – she hates it and she hates her mother for not stopping whatever happened there.
Everyone gathers at the After Dark for the concert. Steve offers Clare some pot, but she wonders why he would think she would be interested. She gives it back to Dick in front of his date, who was under the impression that he’d quit smoking. Clare doesn’t want to hang out with anyone who’s high. Kelly meets up with Tom, who promises that they’ll spend Valentine’s Day together. David and Donna smooth things over.
Brandon and Tracy take Abby to the concert, assuring her that she and Valerie will work things out. Steve goes outside to chat with Dick while he smokes, and gives in to peer pressure. Chloe gives a boring performance, and Donna complains to Kelly about all the time David’s been spending with her. Kelly teases that they should call Cliff to join them tonight.
Valerie picks another fight with Abby, who doesn’t understand why there’s so much animosity. She’s leaving the next morning for a convention, but when she returns in a week, she wants to sit down with Val and work things out. Valerie refuses, saying Abby won’t win her over. Luther performs and all the couples share a moment, except Clare and Steve, since she can tell he’s been smoking.
In the bathroom, Kelly runs into Valerie and notices that she’s not having a very good night. Val says she hopes Kelly and Tom are happy together, but Kelly needs to know something. Tom is the only person who’s ever really loved Valerie. If Kelly really wants to be with him, fine, but if not, she should let him go so he and Valerie can be together, since she really needs him right now. Kelly can tell that Val is being sincere.
Luther sings more. Clare’s mad at Steve. David tells Donna that he’s glad she’s doing better, but he wonders if she tried to get him to leave that morning because she knew Cliff was coming by. Donna assures him again that she hasn’t spoken to Cliff in months. When Chloe pops up, Donna storms off. This is clearly a healthy relationship.
Kelly tells Tom that she’s changed her mind about spending Valentine’s Day with him. She’s not in love with him, but Valerie is. Kelly says she went out with Tom to make Valerie jealous, and though she did eventually develop feelings for him, things didn’t start out right, so she doesn’t think they should stay together.
Donny, Kelly, and Clare go to the Peach Pit for pie and griping about guys. Cliff’s there and asks Donna to go out with him the next night. Donna accepts, so in your face, David. Tom tells Valerie that he and Kelly broke up, then dances with her. He tells her that over the years, he’s tried to get over her, but it’s never worked. There’s kissing.
Brandon tells Tracy that he has a present for her, then leaves to get a drink of water, telling to grab a shirt since it’s cold. She pulls a shirt out of his dresser and finds a ring. Brandon returns with champagne, and that combined with the ring gives Tracy the understandable thought that he’s proposing. Little does she know that the ring is the one he offered to Kelly. Tracy quickly figures that out, so…that’s awkward.
Thoughts: I guess David’s allowed to hang out with Chloe all he wants but Donna’s not allowed to hang out with Cliff? Shut up, David.
Luther Vandross is way too high-class for this show.
Stoned Steve can’t be much different from regular Steve, right?
I would never advocate drug use, but if there’s anyone who could benefit from the mellowing effect of pot, it’s Clare.
November 26, 2013
Summary: Valentine’s Day is coming! Abby is crabby! She hates all that hearts/flowers/candy/pink/red stuff, and how everyone gets so excited about romance. Love, yuck! So when a guy named Ross starts to show an interest in Abby, and she thinks he’s going to ask her to SMS’s Valentine’s Day dance, she tries to let him know that she doesn’t want to be more than friends. Unfortunately, Abby’s not clear enough and Ross is a little obsessed, so he doesn’t get the hint.
The other BSC girls don’t get the hint either. They think Abby’s being ridiculous for not wanting to get to know Ross better. She points out that there’s nothing wrong with being single, but Stacey, Claudia, and Mary Anne won’t let it go. Ross also won’t let it go, giving Abby flowers and trying to hang out with her all the time. Abby doesn’t want to be mean, so she doesn’t just tell him that she’s not interested.
Eventually Abby realizes that Ross would be a better match for Anna. She invites Ross over so they can talk, but when the twins are getting ready, they inadvertently make themselves look like each other. Abby puts on her glasses, though she usually wears contacts, and loans Anna one of her shirts. When Ross arrives, he thinks Anna is Abby. The girls decide to just go with it, but their mother accidentally busts them. Ross is ticked, thinking they planned this.
Abby and Anna talk things over, and Anna admits that she likes Ross, who definitely has more in common with her than he does with Abby. The twins ambush him and apologize, then successfully transfer Ross’ affections to Anna. Everyone ends up happy.
In the B-plot, the Thomas/Brewer family is about to say goodbye to Scout, who’s almost done training to be a seeing-eye dog. Andrew wants to keep her, since he doesn’t have a pet of his own, so Kristy has to convince him that there’s a blind person out there who needs Scout more than Andrew does.
Thoughts: Anna doesn’t know wh Mia Hamm is. Get it together, Anna.
Karen gets a kitten but Andrew gets nothing? Nice, Watson.
Charlie gives the best advice. That’s why he’s my fictional future husband.
I can’t believe Kristy and Abby go to a movie instead of a school dance. I was led to believe that school dances were the most fun thing you could experience in Stoneybrook.
September 17, 2013
Summary: Kelly’s supposed to meet Jackie at the Peach Pit, but Colin is about to meet with a dealer to get some cocaine. He reluctantly takes her to the diner, where Brandon and David are telling Jackie about Kelly’s addiction. Valerie and Susan discuss Jonathan and Brandon, so apparently Jonathan is freaking still in town. So is Ginger, and Valerie suggests that they get her to distract Jonathan from Susan. Jackie plans to confront Kelly, but Kelly bails on their lunch date to stick with Colin and meet his dealer, the inexplicably named Danny Five.
Alpha house is having a Valentine’s Day pajama party/sex-out, where people stay abstinent for 24 hours. Steve is on board, which Clare finds hilarious. She tells him she’s not signing the abstinence pledge. Meanwhile, Valerie takes Ginger to meet Jonathan. Clare has a bet going that Steve won’t stick to his pledge, and she plans to make it really difficult for him. (Maybe that’s why she’s slicing a cucumber?) Brandon finds it funny until Susan tells him she’s signing the pledge.
Colin and Kelly are partying with some other people at the loft when Donna brings over Kelly’s mail. She asks Kelly to come home and attend the Alpha party; she should be with her friends. Kelly insists that she’s already with her friends. David kicks off Valentine’s Day by bringing Valerie breakfast in bed (though he still lives in a dorm, so it’s not that great). He wrote her a poem and she got him a friendship bracelet because he’s the first person she’s dated who’s also been a friend.
While Joe and Donna and cutesy, Susan gets roses from Brandon and gives him signed letters from Woodward and Bernstein. Then she gets an even nicer bouquet of roses, and you get one guess as to who sent them. At the loft, everything’s slanted and all the drugs are gone. Colin calls Kelly for being selfish and using all the drugs, though she points out that she’s the one who paid for them. (Well, Bill did, but still.) He tells her that if she wants more, she’ll have to get them herself.
CU’s football coach tells Joe that he’s going to be replaced on the team – they can’t count on him because of his recent medical issues. Kelly goes back to Danny Five and does coke with him while the rest of the gang goes to the pajama party at the After Dark (it’s really just a regular night at the club, just with everyone in PJs). Clare continues to stoke Steve’s fire, and he finally puts on a blindfold so he can’t see how sexy she looks. Jonathan and Ginger show up together, and Valerie immediately thinks Ginger has something up her sleeve.
Kelly and Danny Five do coke and make out until he leaves to deal with another girl doing drugs in the house. Kelly quickly starts to leave, but a guy stops her to demand money for the drugs. She calls for Danny, but the other guy grabs her and forces her onto the couch. Kelly suggests that they drink some wine and calm down. When the bottle’s empty, she smashes it over his head and makes her escape.
The gang is interested in Ginger and Jonathan’s sudden friendship, which is apparently just for show to make the others wonder what they’re up to. Clare’s still messing with Steve’s mind, but he’s practically welcoming it now. Brandon thinks Jonathan’s using Ginger to make Susan jealous, but Susan thinks he’s only there to bug Brandon. It’s not working, since Brandon’s happy that Jonathan has someone else to annoy. Donna’s dateless since Joe’s moping in his dorm room, and she decides to go find him.
During a dance contest, Ginger pretends to hurt her ankle so Jonathan has to find a new partner. Of course, he picks Susan, because when I think of people who enjoy dancing, the first person I think of is Susan. She keeps saying no and he keeps bugging her, so she punches him. Now Brandon’s having a really good night. Ginger’s annoyed at Valerie for fixing her up with a guy who’s in love with someone else, and she threatens to try to poach David.
Nat tells Brandon that Kelly’s in trouble, so he and Susan take off. Valerie takes David to her office and tells him all about her and Ginger’s previous scam and Ginger’s blackmail. David thinks she should give Ginger the $50,000 she wants, but Valerie would rather send him over to sleep with Ginger. Meanwhile, Brandon and Susan find Kelly, who’s really shaken up.
Joe packs his things, telling Donna that he’s leaving school since he can’t play football anymore. She points out that they don’t even know how serious his condition is. She understands why the coach took Joe off the team, but they need to find out if Joe’s actually sick. He’s upset because all he’s ever wanted is to play football. Valerie goes home alone to her little poem.
Steve barely holds it together until the end of the sex-out, then pounces on Clare. She thinks she won the bet since she set the clock back 30 seconds. She’s actually lost, since he’d already set it forward a minute. They get to have sex with each other, so I’m not sure who the real winner and loser are.
Ginger’s preparing to leave town, since she got what she wanted. Val thinks that means she slept with David, but it turns out he told her he wouldn’t have sex with her because he loves Valerie. Ginger didn’t really want to sleep with him; she just wanted to make Val miserable. David can’t put up with Valerie’s shenanigans anymore, so they’re done. He does promise not to tell the rest of the gang about her scam with Ginger, though. He gives back the friendship bracelet.
Kelly spent the night in the hospital with Brandon and Jackie by her side. She wonders how she got to where she is, saying she had everything and has lost it. She tells Brandon she still loves him. He doesn’t respond, but he agrees to stay with her.
Thoughts: This is really weird, but the guy playing Danny Five also played Bobby in “Leading from the Heart.”
I love the idea of Donna hosting a sex-out. “No sex for 24 hours? Well, it’ll be tough, but I think I can pull it off.”
David and Valerie were kind of cute, but there was no chemistry there, so I’m not too broken up about them…well, breaking up.
I’m impressed that Kelly can think on her feet so well when she’s high.
“Happy Valentine’s Day! Can I pimp you out?” Really, Val?
July 15, 2013
Summary: The teenaged Salingers and their significant others discuss Valentine’s Day, which Bailey hates. He plans to take Sarah to a monster-truck show with Will and Gina. Sarah is understandably annoyed, especially since this is her first Valentine’s Day with a boyfriend. Bailey thinks he’s being perfectly romantic. Claudia makes her single appearance of the episode to announce that Griffin is there. Now Justin’s the one who’s annoyed. Griffin wants to talk to Julia, but she’s resistant to spend any time with him.
Kathleen thinks Charlie needs to work on getting more customers at the restaurant, though he thinks everything’s going fine. At school, Justin tells Julia that his parents are going to a beach house for Valentine’s Day, so he snagged the table they were going to take at a restaurant. Julia says that’s great, then announces that she wants to talk to Griffin. She wants to make it clear to him that they’re over and she’s moved on.
At her apartment building, Sarah runs into Sean, a college guy she used to know; she probably had a crush on him as a kid, and it’s still going strong. Kathleen offers Charlie a new chef for the restaurant so he can boost business. Charlie declines. She reminds him that he didn’t get married because he didn’t want that life, but he’s still not putting his name on anything and claiming it. Maybe if he makes the restaurant really great, he’ll feel proud. Charlie says he can’t afford someone like this chef, so Kathleen offers him money.
Sarah tells Bailey about Sean, and Bailey thinks she wants to invite him to the truck show. She actually wants to ditch the show to hang out with Sean. Bailey can’t come up with a good reason not to say no, since he didn’t exactly have something intimate planned. Julia tells Griffin that she and Justin are dating, and since they’ve had sex, they’re definitely together. Griffin confides that he hates his military school and may not go back. She reminds him that he has to, since it was part of the deal his father made with the judge. Griffin says he’s running away.
Griffin spends the night at the Salingers’, and when Justin comes by in the morning, he’s not happy to see him. Bailey meets Sean and learns that he and Sarah spent the previous evening looking at stars together on the roof. He’s unmoved by Sean’s story about being dumped by his girlfriend after joining her in the Peace Corps. Sarah’s smitten, though.
Charlie’s new chef wants to make a bunch of changes at the restaurant, and though Charlie can’t afford them yet, he plans to consider them if the chef brings in more customers. Now he’s grateful to Kathleen for the idea. Speaking of Kathleen, she shows up to cry to Charlie about being moved from the 6:00 to the 5:00 news. She doesn’t want anyone at her station to know that she’s this rattled.
Julia’s pulled out of class and questioned about Griffin’s whereabouts by a guy who I guess is a cop. She claims not to know where he is. Bailey finally wises up about his lame Valentine’s Day plans and tells Sarah that he’ll skip the truck show so they can do something romantic together. Sarah adapts his Valentine’s-Day-is-just-another-day attitude and tells him she’s fine just hanging out with Sean. Bailey: “YES THAT IS TOTALLY FINE I DO NOT WANT TO KILL SEAN AT ALL SMILEY FACE.”
Charlie surprises Kathleen at her office, though he’s surprised himself because he didn’t think she was going to come back. Kathleen – who’s now starting to sound manic – says she’s just going to work harder to prove herself. He throws her over his shoulder to force her to take a break. Yeah, that kind of scene will totally help her be taken more seriously at work.
Julia tells Justin that she’s worried about the police coming to the house to look for Griffin. She needs help getting his motorcycle to him. Justin is more than happy to help and – ha ha, yeah, right. Julia points out that if Justin helps her out, he’ll be helping Griffin leave. Justin gives in. Charlie takes away all of Kathleen’s work-related tech gadgets so she’ll stop working.
Bailey asks Julia for relationship advice, worrying that Sarah’s going to dump him for Sean. Julia thinks someone can love more than one person at a time. Justin’s annoyed that Griffin’s departure has been delayed – it’s Valentine’s Day, and he’d really like for Griffin to be gone by the time he meets Julia for their date. Griffin approves of the present Justin got her and says they’re lucky.
Things are going great for Charlie and Kathleen on their work vacation, at least until the phone rings. Charlie thinks she gave someone their room phone number, but the call is actually for him. Sarah and Sean go to an open mic night, where a guy literally reads from the phone book. Bailey arrives just in time to hear Sean read a poem that he probably wrote about Sarah. It gets sexual, and Bailey ends up punching Sean.
Julia, Justin, and Griffin go to get the motorcycle, eating into the date Julia and Justin were supposed to have. Griffin really wants to stay since – surprise, surprise – he’s in love with Julia. She gets mad, reminding him that he broke things off and didn’t want to keep in touch. Didn’t he expect that she might move on? Justin sees Griffin trying to touch his girlfriend and orders her into the car, then takes off with her.
Sarah’s furious with Bailey, who’s not apologetic at all. Sean tells him the poem was about his ex-girlfriend, not Sarah, who’s in love with Bailey. Bailey’s surprised to learn that Sarah writes poetry about him. She makes it clear that she doesn’t consider his act of violence romantic.
Griffin asks Julia if he can store his bike at the Salingers’ since he can’t take it home. He’s going back to school after all. He can’t bring himself to run away because it would mean never being able to come back, and therefore never being able to see Julia again. Griffin doesn’t want any statements of love or rejection from her either way; he just wants to know that there’s a chance they’ll wind up back together someday. She allows him to leave the bike.
Charlie goes back to the restaurant to deal with the chef, who’s being a diva. He points out that the restaurant is called Salinger’s, and that’s his name, so the restaurant is his. Kathleen: “Yay, you took me literally!” Happy to be Griffin-free, Justin decides to solidify his commitment to Julia in the worst way possible, considering their age and issues: He proposes. She doesn’t accept, but she’s okay with him thinking that way.
Bailey gives flowers to try to make up for his ridiculousness. But since Valentine’s Day is over, he couldn’t get any roses. And the card he got Sarah is in Spanish. But it’s the thought that counts, right? She falls for his I-only-acted-that-way-because-I-was-afraid-of-losing-you story. Charlie has to get up really early to do something for the restaurant, but now Kathleen wants him to ditch work. She thinks their relationship is really going somewhere, and that she could fall in love with him. Charlie basically says, “You’re awesome. TTYL.”
Julia goes to Justin’s house in the middle of the night, making him think she’s going to accept his proposal. Instead, she starts babbling about being late and finally realizing that she needed to check to see if everything was okay. It’s not, and she’s pregnant.
Thoughts: The woman running the open mic night is Ana Gasteyer. She has more screen time in this episode than Claudia does.
Griffin? Aw, man. I was enjoying not having him around.
Julia, you’re allowed to talk to your ex. You don’t have to run it by Justin.
Noooooo, Charlie, don’t take money from the woman you’ve only been sleeping with for two weeks!
First rule of Valentine’s Day: If your girlfriend wants to spend it with another guy, you’re doing something wrong.