An exciting week, eh, teevee gal pals? The season two Gentleman Jack trailer dropped! Good Trouble came back, and so did Natalie’s recaps! Hélène kinda sucked on Eve’s fingers after smashing her hand onto a fire on Killing Eve, which Kayla of course recapped! Kate McKinnon let Florida’s Republican legislators know what she thinks about the Don’t Say Gay bill. And Drew gifted us her weekly Drag Race recap. On the movie beat, Kayla reviewed Fresh and Heather reviewed Joe vs. Carole. Also! Don’t forget Riese has a monthly gay streaming guide for you!
Notes from the TV Team:
+ On Grey’s Anatomy, Hot Doctor Kai and Amelia performed surgery together on the groundbreaking Parkinson’s case that first brought them together and Amelia almost bails last minute to save Owen, but Meredith basically goes “girl have you lost your mind” and it snaps her out of it. Later, Kai flirts more about how Amelia will do anything for the people she loves. Awwwwww. — Carmen
+ Speaking of the Shondaland universe, on Station 19, Carina and Maya have been spending the last two weeks discussing sperm donors for their baby and this week they decide they’d rather a known donor than an anonymous one, definitely that’s setting up to for the donor to be Jack, right? I’m still not a fan of this storyline for a plethora of reasons, but this week I want to ask: What is with all the lesbians having babies this year on TV? The hottest trend of 2022 is a pregnant wife! Carina and Maya, the moms on Home Economics, and the lesbians on Single Drunk Female are all in the middle of various sperm donor plots at the moment and I wanttt outttt of ittttt…. — Carmen
+ Well, if ever there was an episode of Top Chef tailor made for me, this was it… it had my two favorite things: queso and carbs!
In the quickfire challenge, the chefs had to create their own brand of (no tortilla) chips and queso dip. Both queer cheftestants finished in the middle of the pack. In the elimination round, Jo and Ashley found themselves on opposing teams in carbs football challenge. Both Ashleigh and Jo acquit themselves well in their head-to-head battles: Ashleigh gains 20 yards with her meatballs and Jo gains 25 yards with her black garlic congee. Funny enough, Ashleigh inadvertently helped Jo this week by taking Stephanie’s spot in their team’s rotation. By the time Stephanie’s head-to-head battle with Jo rolled around, her rice had broken…which allowed Jo to take the win easily. Both queer cheftestants live to cook another day. — Natalie
+ Soon after its debut on ABC, Promised Land was dispatched to Hulu to finish out its run. The show joined an increasingly long list of Latinx-fronted shows who never get a real chance to grow their audience. I’m still tuning in, though, because I love a soapy drama and I’m holding out hope that Hulu will pick it up for a second season. This week, the oft-overlooked Sandoval daughter, Carmen, is looking for a way to connect her family’s wine — which has mostly been marketed to a white audience — with a Latinx audience. She seeks out a Latina marketing guru, Natalia Rojas, to plan an event to connect their wine with tastemakers. Sparks fly between Carmen and Natalia and by the episode’s end, they’re making a plan for a date and world domination. — Natalie
+ This week on grown-ish, Nomi finds out she’s been accepted into Yale University’s prestigious law school. But before she can celebrate the news too much, Luca brings her back down to earth: how’s she going to break the news to Luna’s father, Phil, who’s been taking a more active role in her life? And more importantly, for our purposes, how does a New Haven Nomi fit into grown-ish‘s season five plans? — Natalie
+ Kate Whitsler’s move to the FBI has led to more interaction between her and the team and more angsty moments between her and Lucy on NCIS: Hawai’i which I am, of course, loving. This week, after working together (from afar) to rescue Lucy’s teammate, they encounter each other at the elevators. The air is thick between them but Kate struggles to find the words and Lucy seemingly wills the elevator doors to close. — Natalie
All American 410: “6 ‘N the Mornin'”
Written by Natalie
In the weeks since she woke up from her coma, Coop’s been untethered. She can’t perform anymore. She can’t write for others…the pain of that is just too much. She’s got her GED but no college plans. She has no job (the show, unsurprisingly, doesn’t recall that Coop used to be a barber). Her dad’s on the road, her mom annoys her so much, she decides to move out. She doesn’t have a place of her own; instead, moving into her friend’s house. Her best friend is off at college and Amina doesn’t want to speak to her again. The only thing she’s tethered to…the only thing that’s hers, really…is her relationship with Patience.
And, frankly, Patience is kind of tired of it.
Patience longs for Coop to have something of her own to do…something that’d give her the opportunity to miss her girlfriend. She shares her lament with Olivia — their conversation is interrupted by Coop — and with Layla. The producer recommends inviting Coop to help organize the label’s upcoming showcase but Patience still worries that it’s too close for comfort since she’s slated to perform. Layla suggests having Coop focus on mentoring the newer artists and promises that it’ll keep Coop busy enough that Patience won’t even notice she’s there. Later, Layla pitches the idea to Coop and while she’s reticent at first, eventually she gives in, seemingly excited by the prospect of fine tuning these unseasoned talents.
But Coop definitely misunderstood the assignment: instead of being a mentor, she arrives at Slausson Cafe looking to be a manager… and not a manager for the new artists either, a manager for Patience. Layla convinces Patience to ignore Coop’s first attempt at interference but when Coop upsets the performance schedule — insisting that Patience be the one to close the showcase (“the only way you opening up for somebody is if they named Beyonce”) — frustration starts to boil over. When Layla and Patience downplay the significance of the showcase’s order, Coop threatens to pull Patience from the showcase. Mercifully Layla’s closer, Kim Nitty, takes the stage early, putting an end to the public argument, but it’s clear that this fight is not over.
Later, Layla confronts Coop about her actions and reminds her that this was her showcase and she’s in charge of picking the order. Layla lets it slip that she offered Coop the opportunity because she had nothing to do but assures Coop that she thought Coop would make things better. She thought! Things don’t get better for Coop at home: Patience blasts her for trying to micromanage her career and blames it on Coop having nothing going on right now. She tells Coop to stay out of her business and go find her own thing. But Patience doesn’t stop there: she tells Coop she needs a break from “us”… and though she says it’s only a suspension — only for one night — it certainly feels like a break-up.
All American: Homecoming 103: “Love and War”
Written by Natalie
When All American: Homecoming debuted there was a lot of press about Rhoyle Ivy King (PN: he/they). How they’d bodied their audition and compelled creator, Nkechi Okoro Carroll, to carve out more of a role for them. How the cast was rallying around them to ensure that they weren’t feeling any backlash from their portrayal of nonbinary character Nathaniel (PN: she). And while all that was great, I wanted to know how often we’d get to see King on-screen, driving storyline on their own, and if those storylines would be more than Nonbinary 101. This week, we got our first real taste of what nonbinary storytelling at Bringston University looks like.
Turns out, Nathaniel’s been allowing Simone to crash in her room during the week to make the tennis player’s morning commute a little easier. Keisha reminds them both not to be so cavalier about skirting dorm rules in front of their resident advisor. As the friends settle in for a gab session, they’re interrupted by one of Keisha’s residents, Wilinda, who needs to talk to the RA ASAP. Days later, Wilinda returns, looking to lodge a formal complaint against Nathaniel for “letting random people to shack up in our dorms, using up our resources.” She’s bold with the indictment: doing it in front of Nathaniel and misgendering her in the process. Simone immediately steps up and asserts Nathaniel’s proper pronouns and asks what Wilinda’s problem is. Nathaniel tries to get Simone to settle down but she is undeterred. Keisha pulls Wilinda away to file her grievance and when they’re gone, Simone chastises Nathaniel for not standing up for herself.
“She’s just trying to stir me up. I know who I am,” Nathaniel asserts. “If I sat around here and tried to correct every person that misgendered me, I’d probably run out of air.”
Nathaniel urges Simone to leave the situation alone but when the opportunity arises to confront Wilinda directly, Nathaniel takes it. She urges the disgruntled resident to address the person she really has a problem with. Wilinda’s annoyed by what she perceives as special treatment. Nathaniel insists that she just took what the university offered — a room with a private bathroom — but Wilinda corrects her: her spacious room and private bathroom was meant for an RA and Nathaniel only has it because Keisha interceded on her behalf. Before walking off, she cruelly spits, “how’s that fair because you want to be different?”
Later, when Wilinda shows up at Keisha’s door to deliver her written complaint, Nathaniel shows up with one of her own. Turns out, she’s been sneaking her boyfriend in and out of the dorm after hours and Nathaniel has the witnesses to back her complaint up. Wilinda begrudgingly withdraws her complaint and retreats but not before getting an assurance from Nathaniel that one day they’ll actually be friends. Nathaniel also clarifies her needs with Keisha: she doesn’t need Keisha fighting her battles for her. Keisha assures Nathaniel that she was just trying to make her feel safe and comfortable.
“I know and I appreciate that,” Nathaniel tearfully acknowledges. “But, in the real world, I won’t always have my ‘Keisha-shield’ and I need to fight these battles now so I can create a space for myself in this world. Whether it’s over my right to stay in the girls’ wing or the boys’ wing or whatever, these are the battles I’m going to have to fight outside of Bringston one day and I just need to be prepared.”
Keisha ensures her friend that she’s heard and that she won’t shield her from the world unless she asks.
A Million Little Things 411: “Piece of Cake”
Written by Natalie
Katherine returns home from Maggie’s 30th birthday party and relieves her mother who watched her son for the evening. She checks on Theo who’s been indoctrinated by his grandmother on all the great things about Randy Kwan. Katherine assures her son that Randy isn’t her type which, of course, leads Theo to ask what her type actually is. The adept lawyer skillfully buys herself some time to come up with an answer to that question, assuring Theo that it and the cake she brought home for him can wait until tomorrow.
Downstairs, Katherine slices off a sliver of Theo’s cake as she flirts with Greta on the phone. Suddenly, Katherine appears unsteady on her feet and she collapses on her kitchen floor. Theo hears the cake plate crash and rushes downstairs. Thankfully, Greta’s still on the phone and coaches Theo on exactly what to do to get help.
At the hospital, Katherine’s friends slowly start to funnel in and try to distract Theo while they await word on Katherine. Eddie hovers near the nurse’s station when Greta approaches the desk and asks for an update on Katherine’s condition. The nurse can only offer medical information to the family and asks, with Eddie looking on, if she’s a relative of Katherine’s. I think for a second that Eddie’s going to be insolent…deny he knows Greta and refuse to give her any information about Katherine…but he surprises me. He pretends that Greta’s his sister — “he got the chin, I got the hair, we’ve got a brother with the most beautiful hands,” she jokes — and they both go back to get an update on Katherine’s condition.
Alone, Eddie confesses that he knows who Greta is and that he saw her and Katherine making out in the coat closet at the party. The rapport between them is light and jovial and Eddie invites Greta to see Katherine first while he updates the others. Greta eases into the conversation with a light-hearted joke — “You know, when I said I always wanted you to to fall for me, this is not what I meant” — before admitting that Katherine came out of the closet when she was making out in it. Later, Eddie assures Katherine that her secret is still hers and she can tell Theo and the others in her own time.
Aside from a few stitches, Katherine’s fine, but Theo watches her closely when they get home. He asks about Greta but his still so traumatized by what happened that he doesn’t wait for an answer. Katherine reassures him that she’ll be fine and welcomes him to sleep next to her so he won’t worry.
Legacies 412: “Not All Who Wander Are Lost”
Written by Valerie Anne
This week, Lizzie finds Aurora fresh off her inspiration heist and desperately combing books for information about the gods at a diner; Lizzie chats her up just long enough for Hope to do the classic vamp neck snap and take her to a motel. Hope does some sunlight torture despite Lizzie’s protests to get information from Aurora. When Aurora comes to, she thinks Lizzie is her brother Tristan, so Lizzie plays along and learns what Aurora knows about the sarcophagi and how it once held the god that humans came to call Vulcan, who is actually a woman. Supposedly her father is the most powerful god and Aurora is going to ask him to kill the Tribrid.
When Hope catches Lizzie playing slumber party with Aurora, she’s mad and immediately breaks the illusion. Lizzie apologizes to Aurora and Aurora just looks sad; she says, “It’s your fault my mind is broken,” and Lizzie suddenly sees Aurora in a new light, like she’s shifted into focus. Aurora says that Tristan died when Elijah did, because in the TVD universe once a vamp dies so does their sire line, which hopefully will give everyone the motivation they need to keep Hope alive even if she stays evil.
Hope makes a magic weapon using the thermostat and some black magic, and lets it burrow into Aurora. Lizzie tries to talk to Hope about it, saying that you can only hate what you could love, and she of all people knows this, because of how much she has always hated Hope. Hope takes advantage of the sire bond and tells Lizzie to kill Aurora, smiling wickedly as she watches Lizzie protest. “I still love you,” Lizzie says, barely able to get the words out, but Hope doesn’t care. Lizzie manages to fight the command just enough to miss Aurora’s heart, which distracts Hope long enough for Lizzie to take her out, at least for now.
Lizzie takes Aurora to the diner, apologizing for writing her off as crazy instead of realizing that she was perpetuating the same things people did to her all those years. She thinks the fact that she’s had to do so much work to control her own brain might be why she was able to wrest control back from Hope. She’s stronger than she once was, and she wants that for Aurora, too. And Aurora’s original plan could be the ticket; they still find the gods, but they ask for a re-do. Some timey wimey business to go back to a time when their siblings were by their side, to when Hope had her humanity. Lizzie put together that the girl she met at the college was the god in question so now they just have to find her.
And they better hurry, because Hope is starting to feel things and eating kind strangers about it. Also, she’s heading right for Mystic Falls.