The Fosters Episode 320 Recap: The Unbearable Brallie-ness of Being

Previously on The Fosters, R and J finally happened. It sure was something. Mat and Mariana confessed that they’re still in love with each other, but they’re also boning other people and don’t know how to move forward. Brandon and Callie blah blah blah with their blah and he blah blah blah. Lena didn’t speak a single word the entire episode. Jack kissed Jude before getting placed in another foster home, which was the foster home Jude and Callie fled when this show first started, and the dad at that foster home literally killed Jack dead. Stef shot the dad because he tried to shoot her first, but it was too late for Jack.

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So proud he became a pastor of the True Gospel.

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And on the third day, fandom rolled the stone away, and Lexa lived.

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So say we all.

Jude calls together his friends and family to bid Jack a fond farewell by quoting one of his favorite songs that echoes the prophet Micah pretty good, and to throw some roses into the sea, and also to declare that he is not sure he’s very gay after all. It’s the first unkind thing he’s ever done, because he says it to Taylor, who has been in love with him since day one. She spends the rest of the episode following him around like a hopeful little puppy, and he rewards her by kissing her to test out whether or not he could maybe be straight. His face is inscrutable afterwards, but hers is not. She is smitten to the max.

Callie asks Jude what the actual heck he is doing. And Jude says that God gave humans free will and also keeps snatching away all the dudes he kisses, and so maybe God doesn’t want him to be gay. Callie explains to her little brother that the “free will” thing is actually more of an esoteric theological debate between Calvinists and Arminianists centering on the question of predestined salvation, and less of a commentary on people being able to choose their own sexual orientation. Also, Jack told Callie he wasn’t gay before he died, and that he just kissed Jude as a plot point and to give his death an emotional anchor, but Jude doesn’t believe Callie because Callie lies about a lot of things.

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But why are Hillary and Bernie supporters ripping each other to shreds when there’s a real monster threatening the country?

Specifically what Callie has been lying about all season is having sex with Brandon. It is a lie of omission. And it comes back to haunt her like I will be haunted for the rest of my life by hearing Brandon say, “This little engine thinks he could again” while lying in bed with his girlfriend. You know that monster Justina who’s been playing Callie all season? Well, Stef finds out that it was Justina who got Jack sent to the house where he was killed, because Justina’s non-profit foster care advocacy company is just a front for the for-profit company she works for that places foster kids in shitty places to make money off of them. Like so for-profit that they’re traded on the NYSE. Armed with this knowledge, Callie blows up Justina’s Fost and Found launch party and shouts down the bill to privatize foster care.

For revenge, Justina posts the restraining order Stef and Lena took out against Brandon on Fost and Found, and a reporter asks Callie if it’s true that she and Brandon did it in last season’s summer finale.

Stef and Lena  yell and yell about what they’re going to do with Justina and her lies. They keep saying “our daughter” and “our daughter,” which is so sweet and perfect and also it makes it about a thousand times harder for Callie to finally confess that she and Brandon did, in fact, have sex, and the look on Stef and Lena’s faces. They honestly cannot believe this fucking storyline will not die.

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Only one million dollars? Wow, okay.

Would you like to know where Brandon is while Callie’s world is falling apart because her friend died and her mentor turned out to be a monster and a reporter is plastering her face all over the internet with this headline about her and Brandon? I know you don’t, but I’m going to tell you anyway. Brandon is screeching at Mat and Mariana about how they can’t get back together because if they pursue authentic happiness with one another they are stabbing him in the back because he needs to make money off of R and J, which means he needs Nick to continue to let them use the warehouse and what would this play be without The Nurse’s epic solo performance? So, for his sake, they need to be miserable with people they don’t love, unless they are selfish assholes and chose to be with the person they do love.

They agree that he is right, that no one’s ever had problems like his problems, that he’s always got everyone’s best interests at heart, etc.

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We’ll find a way to destroy Brallie, I promise.

Of course when Mat and Mariana are saying their goodbyes for the greater good, Nick sees them through the window and Nicks out in the most Nick way possible. It’s so Degrassi. I’ve known this clown was Canadian teen soap material from the very beginning. First he literally sets his dad’s warehouse on fire and burns it down to the ground. And then he drives to Anchor Beach and sits in his car crying for a minute and then pulls a gun out of the glove compartment.

Obviously Lena’s day isn’t as traumatic as Brandon’s, but she does end up in a real pickle with the San Diego school board. She accompanies Monte to her trial where Monte explains that her actions with Sally weren’t untoward and that Sally tried to kiss her (not the other way around) and she didn’t report it because she didn’t want to embarrass her. (Dumb!) I mean, she did hang out alone behind closed doors with Sally and just sit in her car in the parking lot talking to her for hours and encouraging her because she’s the best and brightest star in the universe. (Dumb! Dumb! Dumb!) But she didn’t kiss her. Lena tells the board that Sally is going to testify similarly, and Sally does, but then she keeps on weaving the yarn past the part where she’s the one who tried to kiss Monte and says that she only did it because Monte agreed to write her a letter to Brown if she did lesbian stuff with her. Sally’s mom chimes in at this point to say that Lena is an “out lesbian” and that Monte is her “lover” and that’s why she’s trying to do this cover up.

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I’m sorry my genius storytelling skill is lost on you and that it hurt your feelings or whatever even though I had a reason for what I did.

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That’s. Not. An. Apology.

For reasons that are unclear, the school board sides with Monte, but there’s another issue: Lena let a registered sex offender build sets for a school play. At a school where Degrassi Nick is sitting in the parking lot with a gun, let me remind you. #Cliffhangers

Other bits and bobs: Mike and Ana are dating. Gabe’s going to end up back in jail for all eternity if Jesus doesn’t leave him alone. Brandon uses his Juilliard money to buy a house for Courtney and her kid. And Stef’s new hair is still deliciously queer.

Next season: Nick’s gun goes off and shoots this Brallie storyline right in the face and it dies forever. Lena and Stef install their own pool in their backyard. Callie’s endless suffering never ends. Mariana builds a rocket ship with some parts she found around the garage and codes it to send Brandon to the moon. And Connor finally comes back to San Diego to gay his gay gays with gay Jude.

What’s the next adult recap y’all want? Orphan Black? It’s back so soon!

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Heather Hogan

Heather Hogan is an Autostraddle senior editor who lives in New York City with her wife, Stacy, and their cackle of rescued pets. She's a member of the Television Critics Association, GALECA: The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics, and a Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer critic. You can also find her on Twitter and Instagram.

Heather has written 1718 articles for us.


  1. Thissssss episodddddeeeeee was so hard to watch. Everything bad happened! Brandon was somehow WORSE than usual and between a funeral, his GF getting kicked out of her apt, Callie’s Fost & Found party nightmare…everyone was still making sure to apologize to him for ruining his birthday? Better not let our baby boy feel like the world is somehow bigger than just him!!!

    How can a show that has so many great things also have Brandon?? Such great characters…and then Brandon. Brandon has never done anything that didn’t suck. Truly I loathe him.

    And poor fucking Callie. She is amazing and yet every little mistake she makes always ends up completely blowing up in her face. And since she is the face of this foster care movement, people finding out that she and Brandon boned is going to destroy her life, while Brandon will just be embarrassed but can run off to Julliard and start anew if he wants (though my guess is he’ll do some elaborate lying about going to his Julliard audition but instead will stay in town with his GF and play house and lie to everyone).

    And wtf Nick!!!!!!!!!!! He went bad FASSSTTTTTT.

    GUHHH this is not how I wanted the season to end (or was this a mid season finale, I can’t even remember anymore because every single show I watch is split in two these days and I hate it). Like please could we have just ONE happy ending???!??!! Barf barf barf whyyyyyyy etc. The End.

  2. FYI Connor is never coming back because from what I heard Gavin and Hayden had a falling out that also involved their parents and that’s why Gavin left the show. Gavin and Hayden are no longer following each other on twitter BTW.

    • Teen drama on and off screen? Where is the adult influence on this show?? Also, does anyone have a source for this “falling out” rumor? I’m super discouraged by the roller coaster of stupid and wonderful and how this show drives all over the road.

        • Having gossip about children (even child actors) on Autostraddle makes me uncomfortable. Can we leave the rumors to be rumors on the other, meaner corners of the internet?

          • I understand you being uncomfortable and I agree that we need to be careful about Hayden and Gavin because they are underage, however, Hayden’s mom is really the one I was referring to. Her influence on Hayden is ruining what was a great story based on her twitter account and the rumors that are swirling. I’ve also felt that Hayden’s acting has been off for quite awhile and now I know why.

    • Can the actor that plays Brandon have a falling out with somebody? Please? Pretty please?

    • They could always give Connor a face transplant. It’s not like there isn’t precedent.

  3. Heather, I love you. Last week when I watched the disaster that was the R+J episode, I looked around my apartment in search of soft things to punch. I couldn’t find any and it was so sad! Having this recap here is my soft thing to punch, except I don’t want to punch it, because it’s great. You know what I’m saying.

    • Aaah, I felt the same way. My solution however was to fast-forward any scene where there might be the slightest chance that dipshit Brandon and Callie would look at each other. Needless to say, there was not much left to watch.

  4. “But why are Hillary and Bernie supporters ripping each other to shreds when there’s a real monster threatening the country?”


  5. Let’s look on the bright side, at least there was no Brallie pregnancy scare. I was afraid of it all season.

  6. “I’m sorry my genius storytelling skill is lost on you and that it hurt your feelings or whatever even though I had a reason for what I did.”

  7. Can we talk about last weeks episode for a moment – was I the only one who straight-up LOVED their interpretation of Romeo and Juliet!? Like, I actually LOVED it. Brandon’s son at the beginning, and at the end, and the fight sequences!? It was SO GOOD and I was SO SURPRISED that I liked it that much.

    Okay, now back to this week. I hated that the show made me feel even momentarily sorry for Nick, because I like Mat, and I like Mariana with Mat.

    Callie can’t catch a break, Brandon continues to be self-absorbed beyond all imagining, and Braillie still exists. Why does nothing ever change on this show?

      • This episode with him saying he was adult now and telling his father that he can stand up to his mom? Barf
        And of course he got $7500 check in hand. Of course.

    • Why is it bad to feel bad for Nick because you like Mat or Mariana+Mat? I enjoy the fact that the show isn’t forcing us to take sides, and also forcing the idea of who is “right” on us. Nick is hurt, that is sad. Mariana should still be with Mat. Life is hard, people hurt. Etc. I love seeing that on television!

  8. ALSO: If we’re talking about new adult things to recap, PERSON OF INTEREST RETURNS MAY 3rd!!! Please tell me someone will be doing recaps!?!?!? Or at least mini-recaps in BOYT!?

    • I know someone who is, but that’s on a different blog – so not quite the same thing. :P

  9. I can’t decide between Orphan Black or PoI!!!!

    PoI has a big chance of ending with a big open finale or cliffhanger because J.J. Abrams hoped to get the show renewed for a 6th season until the last minute (well, as showrunners are going nowadays that could also be a big lie and a show for the fans).

    Orphan Black will have more seasons for sure, but I can’t resist Tatiana Maslany and the other situation I will not talk about because no, she’s not dead.

    • No, the exec producers have said that the season 5 finale was expressly written so that it could function as EITHER a season finale or a series finale. Jonah Nolan has said that it ends with everything tied up in a neat bow (now, whether that means Root and Shaw end the series alive remains to be seen).

      I know you guys are super busy, and that PoI’s compressed schedule is going to make it a total bitch to recap, but….

      • Damn, that was supposed to be the “Both. Both is good.” gif, but I guess it didn’t work.

  10. When I finally sit down and watch this season I am glad to know Steph doesn’t die but ugh at all the Brandon and Callie stuff and dead kids

    Also, *yes please* to orphan black.

  11. FYI since episode 3.11 the show hasn’t been able to crack a million viewers and I think it’s because fans dropped the show when Brandon and Callie had sex and Connor was sent away. These two things happened at the same time on the show.
    If I were Bradley, Peter and Joanna I would be worried about the legacy of this show because I am very disappointed in the direction the show is taking and I bet there are others.
    I’ve also noticed that Sherri and Teri haven’t been doing much press about the show of late and that’s telling.

      • Brandon, aaargh. When does he leave? Can we enforce a blockade and put him on the other side? And while we are at it, let’s send foster advocate of the year Justina with him.

        I volunteer to stand guard and defend our sanity by any means necessary.

    • I read on some ratings-site who had noted that actually all Freeform-shows have dropped in ratings this year since the network was renamed. So perhaps there is some other reason beyond bad cliffhangers (Brandon and Callie sleeping together on The Fosters, Cece being the villain on PLL) behind the drop in viewers on Freeform-shows.

  12. YES to Brallie’s overdue ending (Not a fan since day 1!) and YES to Orphan Black coming back so soon (April 14!!) and Heather/Autostraddle recapping it!!!

  13. Brandon is the single reason I never watched this show past season one. Your continuing hatred of him, Heather, has justified this decision.

    Once again, the entitled white guy ruins it for the rest of us!

  14. Ugh can we please just bypass Brailie and have have a show that solely focuses on Stef and Lena?

    • We could. But unless they switch it to another network that’s aimed towards adults, the show wouldn’t survive half a season, haha. The show is on a network aimed at teens, and without the teen-storylines, the teens wouldn’t watch it. On every discussion board that isn’t Autostraddle pretty much all of the posts are about the teens. And I can’t say I blame them, because when I was a teen I certainly didn’t care about shows that focused on the parents/adults.

      • And sadly, a LOT of the teens are obsessed with Brallie. As in, STILL rooting for it. They’re playing to their base.

          • Same thing that makes Fitz & Aria so popular I guess, the target audience loves a forbidden romance and wants to see stories that cater to the fairytale that love conquers all. At least that’s what I get from reading posts on Instagram or Facebook.

  15. when this episode happened, i chugged my wine, then fell on the floor, slapped the carpet for a while, then sadly looked up at my girlfriend and said, “Heather Hogan is on vacation this week. Who will make this show feel okay again?”

  16. I have to stop watching Orphan Black because it gave me too many feelings

    Like I think I need to develop a healthy, non-TV-related social life before I can watch shows with Queers in them again.

    Representation Matters (A Bit Too Much) To Me


  17. Ok. I have a lot of problems with this show. Brandon of course. But also it was obvious from the minute Justine appeared what was going to happen. I imagined the whole plot that they took so long to drag out the minute she started talking to Callie. The writers really didn’t make that plot at all interesting or exciting to me. In general, I think the writing on the show lately has gotten lazier.

  18. Meh, I’d say everyone on the show is equally self absorbed…they’ve all done things that aren’t great decisions for selfish reasons. I don’t have a problem with Brandon.

  19. very very late to this, but my vote for the next adult show recap is Orphan Black!!!! I’m so excited that I just got BBC America and can finally watch it live.

    Please, Heather, Please!

    (No comment on the fosters. It all hurt.)

  20. I really like Nick, and I like Mariana and Nick together more than Mat and Mariana together, because she did cheat on him and they did break up and I really just want a storyline where no one gets back with their ex and everyone moves on. Also I do just really like Nick.

    I’m also advocating for a show purely focused on Stef and Lena because lbr they’re the best couple on the show.

  21. I hope this finally opens the door for brallie , they are star-crossed lovers after all they deserve to be together.

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