“South of Nowhere” Recaps: Episodes 3.1 & 3.2 “The Valley of the Shadows”

Wanna see my scar ? — Ash and Aiden are walking to class together, and she’s tagging after him like a little puppy, asking to "see it." He reminds her that she’s seen "it" a million times. What are they talking about? His scar, you pigs. Aiden was shot through the heart (and did I mention that you’re to blame?), and Ashley wants to see the wound.

She makes sure to caress his chest as she examines the red blotch (which looks like a bigger, redder version of Marky Mark’s extra nipple), and as she does, the two exchange knowing looks.

Oh, it is so on between them again.

As they banter back and forth, we learn that Ashley was in Europe for two months while everyone else at King High was getting therapy for PTSD. She’s typically blasé about it all, casually mentioning that she didn’t return Spencer’s calls while she was away.

Even Aiden is stopped in his tracks by that particular revelation. She didn’t call Spencer, she tells him, because after Clay’s death, she "just couldn’t deal."

Ashley most definitely gives love a bad name.

They don’t want their MTV — Spencer is accosted by an ambitious young reporter from MTV who wants her to discuss the shooting. I suspect the woman is an unpaid intern whose zest for the job is a product of her raw ambition. I have no idea why I created a backstory for her, but there you go.

She tells Spencer that they want all of the students to share their feelings about the shooting for the documentary. Spencer, it turns out, has agreed to do so — but only "for Clay." Unlike Madison, this will not be her audition tape for Real World: South Beach.

Spencer: I had this whole thing in my head, but now of course I can’t remember a word of it. So, um, the night of the shooting I lost my brother. [starts to cry] It reminds me of how much this all sucks. I’m done.

That was really short. The intern will now be fired.

Guitar zero — Back at the Carlin homestead, Glen is pumping his ridiculous goatee into the air while rocking a Guitar Hero solo. He’s still in his bathrobe. I’m thinking it’s probably noon. My mother would have ripped him a new one by now. And then some.

Mother Superior comes home from work and, well, proceeds to do just that. Glen is so dumb that he (a) tells her to check out his solo; (b) asks her why she’s home so early. Rather than drag him out of the room by his hair, she sits him down and gives him a surprisingly tame lecture about being a big boy. Then she tells him to get a job or she’ll start charging him rent. Ha.

In the middle of all of this, Glen has a flashback to the day he received his letter from the Army (aka "Army" to you Arrested Development fans) telling him to report for basic training. Glen must have socked that letter away in his underwear drawer and tried to forget he ever opened it. Which is what I do when the Feds ask me when I plan to repay my student loans.

I’m ready for my close-up — Cut to King High where the MTV intern is grilling the perpetually camera-ready Madison about her own experience with the shooting.

Madison: Yeah, it was scary to come back, but now that I’m here it’s OK. Life goes on, you know. And there were plenty of things I regretted doing before the shooting, so I didn’t need a tragedy to figure them out.

Then she takes off to practice some routines before cheerleading tryouts.

Madison, back in tiny little cheerleader miniskirts on the cheer squad? I couldn’t be happier.

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