This week has been the pits, huh? Here are 55 fictional witches to distract you! Also, Heather loved Maya Rudolph’s new show and Valerie Anne recapped the last two episodes of Wynonna Earp‘s third season. Here’s what else and make sure you’re registered to vote!
You 104: “The Captain”
Written by Heather
I’ve gotta level with you here. I have no idea if Shay Mitchell is actually gay on You. Peach is legitimately a psycho lesbian in this books, and at first I got the impression she was going to be that on the show too, but now it seems like maybe she’s just… awesome? She’s so mean! But she definitely sees through Dan Humphrey’s bullshit — “Becks, love yourself! Ghost him already!” — and reads Beck’s “treacly” first drafts and gives her solid writing advice, a skill that’s apparently encoded into her DNA? Look, I told you, she doesn’t want to talk about the Salinger thing. Her advice to Beck is, “Don’t write another puppy thing! Write fresh!”
(She does caress Beck’s hair for a prolonged period of time while saying this??? She’s gay. She’s definitely gay, okay. She’s gay.)
That advice solves one of Beck’s problems this week. The other problems are that Dan Humphrey is, of course, terrible in bed, and her dad — whom she calls The Captain, like some kind of Archibald — is in town and wants to go to the Dickens festival, but she kind of told everyone he’s dead. Don’t worry, she channels her dead dad lies into her writing and her peer group loves it.
While Beck is off doing that, Peach does some investigating about her missing leather-bound copy of Ozma of Oz, which she feels strongly that Dan stole at her party when he was skulking around in her library. She goes to Dan’s bookstore to confront him, but he is obviously out stalking peach at the Dickens Festival, so she chats up his co-worker who describes her as “kinda hot” which made me LOL 4 REAL because I love being reminded that my loathing of men is perpetually valid! He also gives Peach a bunch of information about Dan’s whereabouts and general personal business, which Peach is obviously going to use to piece together his crimes.
I know this to be true because she eventually puts on a beret about it and that means some shit’s about to get solved.
Beck sleeps with Dan again and its better, but Peach is about to put an end to those shenanigans because she’s got bed bugs and she needs a place to live for a while. (Probably it will be the place she just paid the rent for in last week’s episode, huh?) (That place is Peach’s apartment.)
9-1-1 203: “Help Is Not Coming”
Written by Natalie
Have you ever played Jenga? If you’re not familiar with it, players create a tower out of 54 wooden blocks and then take turns removing a piece and placing it atop the tower. The more pieces players remove, the taller and more unstable the structure gets. There’s always this point during the game, where the tower teeters to the left or the right, as if an errant exhale might send it all tumbling down. I mention this because, thanks to a powerful earthquake, the hotel that the first responders of Station 118 find themselves in, looks a lot like that teetering tower and, in order to save Henrietta “Hen” Wilson, the team has to play a real life game of Jenga. Only they do it with cars and fallen pillars, instead of wooden blocks. But, I’m getting ahead of myself.
This week’s episode picks up where last week’s left off: with Hen trapped in a pocket of rubble. Her radio’s been damaged in the fall but her team tracks her location — about three meters beneath them in an underground parking deck — using her GPS signal. As her colleagues work to get to her, Hen tries to find her own way out: squeezing through gaps in the rubble and crawling beneath the low-hanging debris. She stumbles upon another firefighter, Russ from Station 221, pinned beneath the wreckage, and gasping for breath. The trapped firefighter urges Hen to save her time and energy — his injuries are catastrophic and he knows it — but Hen refuses to give up. She assures Russ that they’ll get out as she prepares a morphine injection to make him more comfortable, but before she can administer it, he slips away.
Fearing that Russ’ fate might become her own, Hen keeps fighting to escape but it all seems so futile. She rests against a car, pulls out her phone and records a voice memo for her wife.
“I wanted to say that I wish I could promise you that I was coming home tonight, but, after you took me back, you know, I swore that I would never lie to you again…and, baby, it’s not looking too good for me right now,” Hen admits, her voice breaking repeatedly, fraught with emotion. “I love you. I love you and I love Denny so much. And whatever happens I just need you to know that that I didn’t give up, okay? That I fought. I fought to the end. I fought. I fought to come home to you, okay?”
Hen stows her phone in her pocket, slips on her helmet and keeps hammering at the wreckage with her pry bar. When she finally breaks through, Hen’s greeted by a dog — the emotional support dog from the rich lady in a previous episode — and she crawls through the hole she’s made to follow him out. He leads her through the wreckage directly to the little girl that Hen had been searching for before she fell.
Topside, Hen’s teammates are still trying to get to her but they notice that her GPS signal has moved to the south side of the parking garage. But when Hen’s Captain calls for help and equipment, the chief refuses his request, citing warnings from the engineers. Nate Fisher Bobby orders everyone out of the building but he and Chim defy the order and go off to rescue Hen on their own. With no support, they pillage the valeted cars for hydraulic jacks and tools. They stumble upon a truck from Utah and use the truck and its snow chains to pull cars from the wreckage. Like a real life game of Jenga.
Eventually, help does come: having finished their dangerous rescue, Hen’s squadmates, Buck and Eddie, bring reinforcements. They succeed of course — no one was gonna let an adorable little girl and a cute dog die, much less the lone female firefighter on the show — and Hen emerges from the rubble with the little girl clinging to her back. After getting checked out and saluting her fallen comrade, she returns home to her relieved wife, Karen, and their son Denny, carrying a little surprise: she’s adopted the dog that she found in the rubble.
How to Get Away With Murder 502: “Whose Blood Is That?”
Written by Natalie
Bisexual. Bi-sex-u-al. I’ve been saying that word for most of my adult life and I’ve never found it that difficult. Yes, it’s four syllables but it’s a pretty simple word right? Bi-sex-u-al. Why then does it seem like shows are going out of their way to avoid saying it lately? It happen on the season finale of Insecure and now it’s popping up on my beloved How to Get Away With Murder. Let’s back up a minute…
When we meet her, Nanda Hashim is serving 20 years for killing her wife, Ally Bathurst, in a vehicular homicide. She’d been railroaded by an overworked public defender but, thanks to Annalise’s Supreme Court victory, she’s getting a shot at an appeal. Annalise’s students toss out one idea for trial strategy after the next Michaela suggests they predicate their entire appeal on the shoddy lawyering that forced Hashim into unwittingly signing a plea deal. Satisfied that it’s the best course of action, Annalise allows Michaela to take the lead on the case but not before reminding her of the stakes: a loss means that Nanda has to serve a full 20-year sentence, after which she’ll get “deported back to a country where they’re sticking women and men in concentration camps, raping and killing them.”
For a while, it looks like Michaela is going to expose the public defender for his inept defense of Nanda but, when he directs his ire at Annalise — condemning her for arrogance in thinking she could change an unjust system — Michaela’s defense strategy goes South. Then, when the prosecution introduces Nanda’s green card application, which notes that she was a widow after being married to a man. The prosecutor calls Nanda’s gay marriage a fraud and notes that the public defender knew about Nanda’s past marriage so obviously he wasn’t that bad of a public defender (or, I think that was the point, I don’t really know).
And this brings me back to my original point: why is this prosecutor, on a show with a gay creator/showrunner and a pansexual lead character suggesting that relationships between a woman and a woman, after one of those women has had a relationship with a man, are fraudulent? Bisexuality is a thing! Why does this show forcing its characters and its audience into a binary? WHY CAN’T NANDA BE BISEXUAL? WHY CAN’T THIS SHOW SAY SO? I get that HTGAWM is interested in making a parallel between Nanda and Simon — the Caplan & Gold intern that Michaela got deported to Pakistan at the end of last season — but this felt like pretty blatant erasure on a show that should know better.
Ultimately, though, thanks to a huge assist from Oliver, Annalise uncovers that it was Ally’s son, an undercover alt-right racist, who killed his mother. He’d seen a woman in a hijab walking to mosque — their marriage wasn’t a fraud, they’d falled in love and Ally had converted to Islam — and assumed it was Nanda but ended up killing his own mother instead.
Still no hook-up between Tegan and Annalise this week but their bickering is picking up, mostly over the fact that Laurel Castillo is part of Annalise’s team at Caplan & Gold. I hopeful that the bitterness between them soon transforms into lust and that they’re searching for the one room in C&G without glass walls. That said, the bisexual erasure this week leaves me feeling a little less optimistic.
Mayans M.C. 105: “Uch/Opossum”
Santo Padre Mayor Antonia Pena showed up again this week for a meeting with Miguel Galindo*, the head of the Galindo Cartel. He threatens to pull a planned economic development out of Santo Padre if the Mayor won’t alter zoning restrictions. Antonia runs to the MC to vent her frustration when Bishop lets her in on the secret: Miguel’s likely just overreacting to his son’s kidnapping by a band of Mexican rebels (Los Olvidados). While Antonia’s sympathetic — she has kids of her own, afterall — she also wonders openly what happens the rebels kill Galindo’s son and Miguel really becomes unglued.
Again, just a brief appearance from Mayor Pena this week but it was enough to get me wondering what the relationship between her and Bishop, the leader of the MC, really is. It doesn’t seem romantic — though I remain in mortal fear that eventually one of the lesbians on this show is going to sleep with one of the club members — but when she tells him about her meeting with Galindo, he immediately gets protective. There’s something more going on there and I’m intrigued to discover what it is.
(*One of the more interesting things about this show has been seeing Danny Pino (who plays Miguel Galindo) and Tony Planta (who plays Galindo consigliere, Devante) play these villains after years of watching them playing good guys on other TV shows.) — Natalie
The Purge 105: “Rise Up”
Welp, The Revolution is coming to The Purge in a blaze of gunfire and I have a bad feeling for our beloved Lila Staton. It turns out Catalina, the Staton’s domestic worker that Jenna befriended earlier in the season, is a part of a resistance group with plans to spark a full out uprising, starting first by taking out all of the murderous white elite at the Stanton’s Annual NFFA Purge Ball.
Catalina helps Jenna before it’s too late – both out of human kindness and political solidarity. She sends Rick and Jenna down to the cellar, so that they can escape before getting murdered. Unfortunately, she doesn’t have much interest in Jenna’s plea for Lila’s life. “No Staton is safe,” she nearly hisses with a steely resolve that told me immediately Catalina isn’t one to fuck with. Then she cocks her gun and gets to work. Just like that, she became my new favorite character. Anyway!
Y’all I feel very conflicted. On one hand I love Jenna and Lila together. I want them to run away on a cloud of sapphic happiness and raise that cute baby on the way together. On the other hand, the NFFA’s been leading a full on genocide against poor people of color for ten years now, so it’s not like I’m going to in good conscious tell Catalina not to fight back. I understand how Lila’s wealth and last name implicates her in those crimes. On some level advocating for her safety feels a bit like advocating on behalf of Tiffany Trump? Or something? Right? I don’t know. The show has done such a magnificent job of making me fall for Lila’s tenderness, it’s hard to see her as the enemy – even when I intellectually understand the ways that she is.
Honestly, I hope Catalina’s insurgent group burns that mansion to the ground. I also want for Lila not to be in it when they do. — Carmen
Much of Mariah and Tessa’s scenes this week revolved around the nuptials between Mariah’s mom, Sharon, and her longtime love, Nick, but there was this great moment from Thursday’s show where everyone was surprised by return of Sharon and Nick’s son, Noah. How does one tell your little brother that you’re now dating his ex-girlfriend after promising him that there was nothing between you, aside from that time when you kissed in San Francisco and professed your love her for on Halloween? Talk about AWKWARD…and yet, somehow, it wasn’t even the most awkward thing to happen at Nick and Sharon’s almost wedding. — Natalie
Grey’s Anatomy 1503: “Gut Feeling”
I’ll just say this: If Grey’s wants me to fall in love with Cece (the queer black woman who’s currently a patient at Grey Sloan Memorial and Meredith’s hired “matchmaker”), they are going to have to give her more to do than fix straight white women’s problems. I don’t mind her mentoring Helm, but every time she started in with Meredith my eyes rolled so far back in my head I could see the dust balls on the floor behind me. — Carmen
Station 19 201: “No Recovery”
Maya the Bisexual Olympian Firefighter lived!! She made it through the cliffhanger! As a reward, she gets to run in to many more fires (and our hearts). — Carmen