“Younger” recap (2.3): Like a Boss

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It’s not every day a 26-year-old gets their very own imprint—at least, that’s the mindset of one Kelsey Peters. Lauren, Tad, and Liza are here to help her celebrate, Kelsey referring to Liza as her co-millennial. Despite assuming Liza and Josh are at an on-again week in their relationship, it becomes super clear that they’re in an off-again period. It’s anyone’s guess if Josh will show up, and when he does, he’s alarmed by the fact that Liza hasn’t told Kelsey the truth about her age yet. If this is Liza and Josh’s biggest problem, and he continues to be that person who bails out after previously providing all this reassurance to Liza that they’re legit good—the end of the Liza-Josh movie is going to be more depressing and way less erotic than the 1991 film Ghost.

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Because that’s exactly what Kelsey, Lauren and Lauren’s mom Denise (the one and only Kathy Najimy) think Josh is doing to Liza—ghosting her. We’ve talked about “ghosting” before. In a way, Josh has given Liza explanation and communication, regardless of how fickle and unhip to using punctuation in text messages he might be. The girls can’t know the actual truth about Josh’s ghostly behavior because then Kathy Najimy and Liza would have to throw down some wine and get weird on some Sister Act songs. Lauren’s mom Denise is a hoot, telling the girls Miriam from the Jewish Museum is for sure ghosting her. You know what, Denise? She probably is. My mom has been in your shoes, and she putzed around the house for days. Lauren and Kelsey aren’t done here—when they aren’t power careering and schmoozing with influencers they’re cruising Josh’s Facebook for signs that he’s alive, eating pizza and clearly not giving Liza the time of day. 

Anyway, there’s no time for this man talk, says Liza. They’ve got a press release to put out, a party to get ready for, and back on the home front, Maggie is coming up short on rent and needs a solution stat. She shouldn’t go to Atlantic City and try to gamble her remaining cash. But she says she needs another plan. Damn the man! She asks Liza if she can stay at Josh’s place for the weekend, but Liza informs her about all this ghosting. Maggie doesn’t understand what’s happened to the world we live in, a true Generation Xer, and we love her for it: “We all used to lie, and eat gluten, and smoke cigarettes, and hang up on each other!” Exactly.

Maggie and Liza’s likely frame of reference for how a breakup or period of time where the other person is a spec of dust in the world that you don’t see all over social media should look like comes from watching Singles, Reality Bites and anything by Greg Araki. You know? They’ve lived that drama. Liza is a grown ass woman. She can keep telling Josh why she’s made the choices she’s made, or she can take a step back from the whole thing.

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Later that night, a man comes into Josh’s tattoo shop asking him for help with an address and Josh follows the man up to Liza and Maggie’s place—Maggie’s hosting a sex party, even though she told Liza she was going to AirBnB their spot to collect more money. Josh asks if Liza knows and Maggie’s like, “Duh, of course not.” Josh is like, “Well, do what you gotta do,” but it’s judgemental and bratty and full of privilege and Maggie immediately sets things straight. Her modus operandi for making more money at a dire time is hers. She needs to pay rent and she needs money now, so pony up or get out. Josh recognizes that Maggie isn’t fucking around when it comes to living life to the fullest, shamelessly, confidently—and she tells Josh he should probably let Liza live her life, too if he can’t see how self-evolved and tough-as-nails she is. Forget about her age, she’s a bad ass. 

“Maybe you need a basic bitch,” she throws at Josh. He smiles because he’s getting owned. This is the truth. And Maggie always knows best.

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At the Glue Factory, a party for Kelsey and the Millennial Print launch is underway. She’s in a custom dress that looks more like a stage prop; made by some designers Lauren talked up. Anyone remember Bjornberg from Season 1? Because I’m pretty sure this dress is the walrus—but dead. She waddles down the carpet, distracted and stressed out over the flood of negative comments that keep popping up online about her new role. One commenter calls her a “kitten in a Barbie car.” She can’t take it any longer; someone needs to get Kelsey out of this dress—now! Is this a little Darren Star nod to a previous, infamous dress-freak-out scene from Sarah Jessica Parker days?

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In the kitchen, Lauren can’t watch as Liza cuts Kelsey out of the dress from Hector and Dorf—fuck their schnapps and their fancy brand. Oops, there’s the zipper. It doesn’t matter now. Kelsey looks hot in her black slip, and she’s ready to take the crowd by storm with her speech. One problem: Her speech has smeared off on her hand, and now she’s freaking out again. Can she handle this? Is she an imposter in a big pond she knows nothing about? 

Liza’s got news for her: No one knows what they’re doing. If you’re like me, you almost thought for a moment that this might be the time Liza tells Kelsey the truth. But she simply offers to feed Kelsey her speech through a Bluetooth device she pulls out of her magic purse. Not only is Liza a super mom who coaches her pal Kelsey through Lamaze to calm her down (such a mom move, you guys) but she is now squishing out perfect, cute words that Kelsey can deliver on stage.

Diana Trout might’ve put herself into the crypt by now with one of these hip cocktails, but Charles is being observant as always, noticing Liza’s every move. Actually, it’s odd he’s the only one who happens to notice Liza standing in the middle of the crowd feeding Kelsey her lines—but no one else bats an eye. He casually lets her know that he’s onto her, but slyly slips in a question about her “young man.” Clever, Charles. He’s going to fetch Liza that drink—maybe use this as opportunity to finally ask her outbut then Josh shows up. Josh! The guy can’t make up his mind. One second his head is spinning so hard, bro—the next, he’s like, “A bat mitzvah? An art thing? Liza’s work party? Oh, but free booze and hot people? I’m there.” Josh isn’t going to let Charles get the girl—he probably felt some kind of energy force from his tattoo shop and headed straight over.

In the end, Maggie made that money, Liza and Josh made out to the Weeknd, Charles double-fisted champagne, and Kelsey shed her walrus skin once and for all. I only hope Lauren had the decency to show face over at Maggie’s little party—wouldn’t be one without her.

Tune in every Wednesday night on TV Land for new episodes of Younger and, as always, follow me on Twitter @the_hoff!

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