“The Fosters” Episode 111 Recap: Where In The World Is Callie Sandiego?

The episode begins with a recap of the previous 10 episodes: Callie and Jude moved in with the Fosters. Mariana and Jesus had issues with their birth mom. Callie, Brandon and Wyatt triangulated. Stef got shot and then proposed to Lena and then they got married, Callie and Brandon kissed and Jude witnessed it and went all Don Corleone on Callie. Callie ran away to Indiana.

I’d also like to do a recap of my 10 recaps: I was funny and charming and people liked my digressions and then everyone got mad at me for wanting more hot lesbian mom sex.

And here we are again, watchers of The Fosters!

Oh, what a beautiful morning...

Oh, what a beautiful morning…

The show opens with Stef and Lena in bed and I love the color of their sheets and the way Lena’s arm is draped over Stef and I feel all warm and fuzzy but it could be the herbal tea and the hoodie. They exchange greetings by saying to each other, “Good morning, Mrs. Adams-Foster.” Kinda cute until Stef says, “No hyphen,” like she knew I hyphenated it in my mind. Whatever, Stef. Put on your uniform so you look the part of the grammar police.

Digression 1: Stef and Lena are lucky they live in the TV because their names go really well together. That’s rare in the real world which is why my partner and I did not wake up the day after out wedding and say, “Good morning Mrs. Reich-Brandão.” Instead, we said, “Did you hear that? I think the kids are up and screaming about donuts.”

Stef and Lena snuggle and Lena kisses Stef’s bare shoulders and I can definitely appreciate shoulder kisses. Stef suggests some real kisses and Lena says, “Come here, woman!” and Stef says, “I love it when you call me ‘woman’.” Lena springs from the bed in a tunic made from saber-toothed tigers and drags Lena back to her cave for roasted mammoth and a make-out session.

Downstairs, someone’s in the kitchen with Annie. Someone’s in the kitchen, I know. Annie Potts is back and organizing and cooking and grandmothering and I love her and want her to stay forever. All the kids are there but Callie. Brandon asks Jude where Callie is and he says that she’s at her guitar lesson. Obviously, nobody knows that she’s taking guitar lessons in Indiana. The kids are eating pancakes and they are using Aunt Jemima syrup and I call foul! I have never been to a lesbian household that doesn’t serve natural maple syrup from free-range grass-fed maple trees.

This is my 'not amused by your syrup choices' face.

This is my ‘not amused by your syrup choices’ face.

Digression 2: Last weekend, we were at a friends’ cabin and we forgot our natural grass-fed syrup and there was a real, live bottle of Aunt Jemima there. My daughter put it on her pancakes reluctantly and then said, “Mom, it doesn’t taste right. It tastes like chemicals.” And this is how lesbians will take over the world by a pancake syrup uprising. Power to the maple!

While I focus on maple syrup, there is a lot of talk of tables and glasses and Mariana and Jesus are fighting over who gets to spend time with Lexi and this is a love triangle that I can get behind! Stef and Lena enter the fray and Stef’s hair looks completely different than when she went to bed a few months ago. Mike comes in and then there is more talk about tables and glasses and loading and unloading cars and why does it get so much screen time? Why am I recapping it? Annie Potts who I will now call by her character name, Sharon, chooses this time to question Stef about the adoption because moms are good at asking “What they hell are you doing with your life?!” at the most inopportune times.

Next, we see Wyatt putting gas in his car at a gas station with a lovely mountainous backdrop. I would visit that gas station just for the view. Of course, I live in the tundra and my view consists of the ice dam on my neighbor’s roof so I can’t be trusted. Callie comes out with a plastic bag and I yell, “I hope you got jelly bellies!”

Digression 3: Here is a parenting pro tip. Always take a bag of jelly bellies on road trips. Dole out 6 to 8 jelly bellies to the children every half hour or so. Force them to identify the flavors. This makes them slow down and taste them and also gives them something to do. Added bonus: you get first pick and can keep your favorite flavors and give the kids the icky ones because they have unsophisticated palates.

As Callie tries to get into the car, Wyatt pulls slightly forward and oh my god – I hate that game! He finally tells her that he won’t let her in unless she tells him why she ran away. She gets in and tells him, “It wasn’t working out.” Wyatt asks, “Did you do something bad?” and she says, “Maybe.” Oh, Callie. I want to give you a hug and hand you some jelly bellies and I wouldn’t even stick you with the popcorn flavored ones.

Brandon and Jude are in the Great Lesbian Kitchen with a bunch of napkins – cloth, not feminine. Brandon says things at the wedding got “weird” and he wants to know if Jude is doing okay and Jude says, “No, you just want to know if I’m going to tell.” Brandon is all, “I don’t know what you’re are talking about and my furrowed brow should be conveying genuine concern for you right now.” Jude tells Brandon that he’s just like Liam and Brandon gets mad and yells, “I love Callie!” I asked recappers to rate Brandon’s current likeability and one out of one recappers rated it at Gross%.

Cue the opening montage and theme song and artfully arranged colored pencils!

Sharon bought Stef and Lena a craftmatic adjustable bed. She’s paying the delivery guy with money from her bra when Jude enters. She says, “If Sleeping Beauty had this bed, I don’t even think she’d have wanted that prince to wake her up.” She tells Jude that she is dating a guy just because she likes his bed and Jude suggests that she ditch the guy and buy her own bed and then they pose for a #365feministselfie and post it to instagram. After their heart to heart, they start playing with the bed and Jude lifts the head and foot on his side and says, “Look! I’m a taco.” And I laugh because “taco.”



Lexi and Mariana are working on a school project together and Jesus comes in and asks to hang with Lexi and Marianna gets cranky and jealous. Mariana then challenges Jesus to a duel at high noon. Her weapon of choice? Finely sculpted eyebrows and deeply cutting sighs.

Then, we cut to a close-up of a lizard. The lizard gets more screentime than Stef and Lena have so far. Wyatt and Callie wander around an alien crash site in the mountains. I know this because of the many signs that say, “Alien Crash Site.” They talk about aliens and ghosts and time travel and get giant green snow cones from a food truck that also sells stuffed aliens – plush, not real. True alien taxidermy is a lost art. As much as I love snow cones, buying one instead of a stuffed alien is a poor life choice. You can’t cuddle a snow cone, kids.

You can't cuddle a lizard either.

You can’t cuddle a lizard either.

Digression 4: Snow cone or sno cone? Discuss.

Wyatt thinks that Callie would be good at time travel because she wouldn’t mess everything up and Callie says, “I wreak havoc wherever I go.” See? She needs a cuddle.

Back at the Charming Craftsman, Jude sees Callie’s guitar in the living room and you can see the lightbulb go on above his head – not literally because the lighting in that living room is always dreadful. He runs to her room and sees that all her stuff is gone. He turns to Mariana, Lexi and Jesus and says, “She ran away.” Cue the Law and Order music.

The family is gathered around the kitchen table and on that kitchen table is Callie’s guitar. The guitar is just laying there like Exhibit A from a badly organized murder mystery dinner party. Stef says, “No one knows anything?” Nope. Stef and Lena bicker about calling Callie’s probation officer. Jude then says he’s worried about Callie going back to juvie and I say, “Well, you should have thought about that before you went all mafia boss on her!”

Wyatt made Callie an offer she couldn't refuse.

Wyatt made Callie an offer she couldn’t refuse.

Wyatt and Callie are in a hotel room and Callie tells him that she is going to take a shower. I can’t help but wonder if they checked that bed for bedbugs. Wyatt spends his alone time walking, staring and running his hands through his hair which – translated – means, “I am beautiful yet conflicted.” The phone rings and Lena is calling from Callie’s phone. She leaves a message asking him to call if he knows anything and there is more staring and hair fluffing and then he deletes the message.

Stef is lying on her new craftmatic adjustable bed and Sharon appears and Stef says that she doesn’t want her to say “I told you so.” It’s like Stef doesn’t even know how moms work. Annie says that she wants them to keep Jude because he is a special kid and Stef says that Callie is too and the she cries and her mom hugs her and then Stef says, “What happened to our bed?” Annie then works the controls and Stef goes up and down and starts laughing and it’s like riding a mechanical bull! Take note, Stef. Make use of that feature later and let us all watch.

Back at the hotel, Wyatt and Callie are chatting and Callie thinks she’ll go to Indiana, get a job and a GED and a place to live. I choose not to point out the possible flaws in her plan because I know that it’s been a rough couple of days. Wyatt then suggests that her dad might be looking for her. Yeah, Wyatt. And maybe her dad’s an alien ghost time traveler. Both seem equally as likely.

Next, we see Wyatt holding Callie while she sleeps and then there is a time lapse thing and it’s morning. Callie snuggles deeper into him and he squirms out from under her and says they have to go. He says he’ll meet her at the car. As he walks down the stairs to the parking lot, we hear Stef say, “Hey, you going somewhere? Where’s Callie?” Stef and Lena look beautiful in this scene. They should probably look like hell after all the worry but nope – gorgeous. Stef, did you do something different with your hair? Lena, is that a new shirt? Did you ladies eat tacos in your folding bed? Whatever you did – it’s working for you.

So worried, yet so beautiful.

So worried, yet so beautiful.

Callie looks out the window and sees the moms and we find out that Wyatt called them! I love Wyatt now! Wyatt is my favorite! I will give Wyatt all the juicy pear flavored jelly bellies! Wyatt takes them to the room and they find that Callie’s gone. They run out to the parking lot and Stef yells Callie’s name and it turns out that Stef is a really shrill screamer. She needs a lesson from Luce in Imagine Me and You. “You’re a wanker number nine!” Then, we see Callie get into a semi and take off.

Mike is in the Great Lesbian Kitchen and Sharon is gone and I weep. Mike is serving eggs but Mariana says that she doesn’t eat eggs anymore because they keep the chickens in tiny cages. Mike is sure the eggs are cage-free which only makes my argument agains the Aunt Jemima syrup that much stronger! Jude wants cereal, Jesus wants all the eggs, Brandon wants to mope. Mike starts making lunches but Marianna doesn’t eat ham because of the pigs. He asks about peanut butter and says, “Anybody abusing the peanuts?” Mike is pretty adorable in this scene and then I remember all the drama with the drinking and the mustang driving from a few months ago and am a little confused. Brandon asks Mariana if she thinks Callie is back with Wyatt and what the peanut? Brandon has lost his mind.

Digression 5: Making lunches for the kids can be chaotic. My daughter likes bacon for lunch – just a pile of bacon in a container. I once ruined her bacon by putting it on bread. My son, however, does not like bacon for lunch. He wants pastrami on “crusty bread” with dijon mustard. I often ruin his pastrami by putting it on non-crusty bread because, “Wake up kid! This isn’t France and I don’t have fresh baguettes every morning!” I like panang curry with fried tofu for lunch but nobody ever asks me.

The semi truck drops Callie off in an unknown city and she approaches a diner called “Cafe Mike” and I spend several minutes wondering if there is significance to the name since Mike the Dad was just in the kitchen. So many Mikes cooking!

We then visit the halls of the Anchor Beach school for beautiful but angst-ridden youth. Mariana is in English class and we know this because of the giant F. Scott Fitzgerald quote scrawled on the blackboard. The swarthy teacher that forced Callie to journal lo those months ago tells Mariana she needs a new partner for her Gatsby project. Marianna says she thought she was doing it with Lexi and I say I thought Lexi was doing it with Jesus. Then, I realize that’s not the kind of “doing it” they are talking about. Bottom line, Lexi is not returning to school.

At Cafe Mike, Callie is having the worst job interview ever. The guy interviewing her tells her that he has a daughter her age and if she were alone on the streets, he would hope someone would tell her what he’s about to tell her, “Go home.” Mike, if that is your real name, I like you.

Caption needed

A good Mike with good advice.

Stef and Lena are driving around looking for Callie and they have all the glassware from the wedding rattling around in the back of their SUV. Rattling glassware is so relaxing. They are bickering and the dialogue is stilted but in that way that feels real and this is what the show does so well. They really do show Stef and Lena’s relationship as perfectly imperfect. They argue about who’s right and how they have handled things so far and the glasses rattle and I think this is the worst honeymoon ever. Then, Stef pulls the car over, pops the back of the car open, takes out the crates of glasses and leaves them on the side of the road and I think two things:

1. Thank god. Those glasses were driving me crazy.

2. Stef in that plaid shirt is quite pleasing to the eye.

Digression 6: I don’t look at tweets about the show until after I’ve already watched and done my notes so that my recap isn’t influenced. This morning, I peeked and saw the following tweet from Sherri Saum:

Relationships are no picnic… but wait! Maybe they are! Mariana prepared an actual picnic for Lexi and Jesus as a going away present for Lexi and, with that, my favorite love triangle comes to an end. Lexi tells Jesus that they are moving to Honduras and she won’t be back. He promises to wait for her forever so I wonder who his love interest will be next week.

Later, in the Great Lesbian Kitchen, Mike and the kids are having pizza and he gets a call from Stef who tells him that Callie took off again. Jude gives Brandon a death glare.

Back in the mobile hot spot of lesbian processing, Lena and Stef talk about how different they are and Lena says they balance each other out. Stef says that maybe they were both wrong about Callie.

Back at the house, Jude is crying in his room and Brandon says, “She didn’t run away with Wyatt. She ran away from me.” Yes, Brandon. Thank you for finally sorting that out. Brandon apologizes to Jude who then admits that he told her that she ruins everything. Brandon tells Jude it’s not his fault and there are hugs all around and peace rains down on them. I try to let go of my grudge against both of them.

Callie wanders the streets and it’s dark and I’m all out of jelly bellies. She stops outside a convenience store and sees some girls wearing short shorts leaning into a dark, mysterious car and she knows they are not giving directions to lost tourists. A young woman asks Callie if she’s looking for the shelter and offers Callie a place to stay. Callie asks to use her phone and I think she’s calling Stef and Lena but she calls the Lompoc Federal Prison and finds out her dad was released a year ago. She then goes into the store, grabs a sandwich and starts eating it. The owner tells her she has to pay for it and she tells him she has no money. She then opens a can of pop and takes a swig and the owner warns her again. Then, she takes a candy bar and opens it and he tells her if she takes a bite, he’ll call the cops. She stares at him and takes a bite and he makes the call. The entire scene is desperate, hopeless and perfect.

In search of something more than Jelly Bellies.

In search of something more than jelly bellies.

Overall impression: The episode felt sluggish but I understand that, in some ways, it had a lot of work to do to set up the episodes to come.

Favorite line: The young woman outside the convenience stores says to Callie, “I used to be you.” Heartbreaking and real.

Really? Did they have to do that?: I got nothing. That’s got to be a good sign, right?

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Vikki Reich

Vikki Reich is a writer and communications consultant. She lives in Minneapolis with her partner and kids, surrounded by a loving queer community.

Vikki has written 25 articles for us.


  1. i haven’t had a chance to read yet because I am quite genuinely on my way out the door but i just had to stop and say that THIS TITLE IS PERFECT. Callie, girl…..girl… girl, dang. So excited to come back and actually read this.

  2. “Take note, Stef. Make use of that feature later and let us all watch.” sweet jesus yes, yes please! i’ve been kind of eeh about callie in this show but man was she heartbreaking in the store.

    • I think the actress who plays Callie (Maia?) is actually the best of the teenage bunch on the show. She definitely earned her keep in that last scene. It was beautifully acted.

  3. I thought the SAME THING about the maple syrup. Lesbians would be using the ‘$20 natural maple syrup’ as my gf calls it

  4. In my mind I call Brandon the frog prince. Not because he’s gonna get kissed and transform but because he’s really self-entitled and privileged and when he frustrated he flaps around his face in a way that is well…..it’s very frog-like.

    I agree that the ending was perfect. I’m relieved they didn’t send her down the overdone “at-risk street youth” plot line, which would just be horribly airbrushed on ABC Family and would involve lots of smudgy cheeks and dustballs in corners.

    I’ve also felt that Steph and Callie are the same person for a long time and Callie’s run in with the law will push all Steph’s buttons in terms of her cop-ishness and her need to protect Callie.

    I hope that Mariana gets a BF/GF this season. It’s hard to be Mariana. Surrounded by gorgeous replicants.

    • I am also glad they didn’t take the street life path with Callie. I’d like to think that my will and constant chanting of “No. Callie. No.” Stopped it.

      Also, I’m with you on Mariana. She made me crazy in the previous episodes but I have a soft spot in my heart for her now.

  5. I had similar thoughts on guitar on table, “Colonel Mustard, in the great lesbian kitchen with the guitar”. Vikki you are talented! I look as forward to your recaps as I do the show : )

    • I definitely wanted to use a Clue reference for that scene! But then I thought I remembered making a Clue reference in some other recap so I couldn’t. It was such an odd scene. Laughably odd.

  6. Uhg every time I see Brandon I want to punch him in the face

    That’s all I wanted to say, none of my friends watches this show and I really wanted to put that out there

  7. I like this show on its merits alone, but that opening scene? A post-coital, legally married, interracial, lesbian couple canoodling in bed on a network formerly owned by Pat Robertson’s Christian Broadcast Network that is still contractually obligated to air The 700 Club? I LOVE THAT.

    I also love your recaps, Vikki. Great job.

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