“The Fosters” recap (1.15): “I love you, Daddy”

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Stef arrives and asks Jude if she can have a minute alone with Callie. These two are quite a pair and together this scenes is pure, heartbreaking, magic. Callie says that necklace was all she had left of her mother. Stef tells her that she’s wrong because she has all her memories of her mom, all the time they spent together and nothing can take that away. Of course she’s right but it doesn’t take away the meaning we silly people give to objects, particularly those that once touched the people we can no longer touch ourselves. Maybe it’s a shirt that your grandfather wore whenever he grilled and has burn marks and grease stains on the placard. Maybe it’s a ring that once was your grandmother’s or your mother’s that you gave to the woman you love. Maybe it’s a book your mother read you when you were sick and that has her name printed on the inside in a child’s hand. To another person, it’s just stuff. You might not notice it if you passed any of it at the thrift store, but for you they have the power to grip your heart or hold your hand or allow you to feel the pressure of your grandmother’s lips on your cheek and the way she always smelled of old lady cream. It’s just stuff but that doesn’t make it less powerful.

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Stef asks Callie to sit and tell her about the woman who made her so amazing. Callie chokes on her words and can only say that she didn’t kiss her mother good-bye. Stef doesn’t understand at first but when she does she wraps Callie in a hug and tells her that the last thing she told her dad was to take the car and shove it. They laugh. Stef tells her that it hurts to lose someone you love but if you cut yourself off from the world, if you refuse to love again, you’re only hurting yourself. She feels like she has five separate hearts running around, one for each kid. Callie looks overwhelmed with the idea of Stef loving her that much. These two peas in a pod hug and Brandon watches from the kitchen window.

On the front steps Jesus helps Emma with her coat. She says gee whiz it was nice to meet your family so I could figure out why you’re such a weirdo. He thanks her for making kugel and they have an awkward exchange about Lexi and her travel plans and whether they include coming back to San Diego any time soon. Jesus is like, “Whoops, gotta go, pretty girl! I look forward to pinning you in practice.”

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Inside Pastor Rowley is trying to leave gracefully. He tells Stef that she has a lovely home. She tries to pull on her armor with a crack about being surprised he would come at all. He tells her that people’s attitudes evolve and that her father came to him many times to try to reconcile his religious faith with his love for his daughter. She asks if she is supposed to be happy about that and the Pastor says yes, she should be happy that her father loved her so much that it made him question his fundamental beliefs. He thanks her again, tells her she has a beautiful family, and leaves her there with tears in her eyes and maybe a new glimpse of her father.

Captain Roberts walks in as some of the crowd is thinning and gives Stef a hug and an apology for being late. She goes and finds Mike to tell him that the DA is opening an investigation into whether or not he should press charges against Mike. Mike is pissed, he thought he was going to be able to go back to work, now he needs to find himself a good lawyer.

Out on the back deck, Brandon sits next to Callie and pulls her necklace out of his pocket. Odds that he took it just to engineer this moment? Pretty darn high. He puts it around her neck and she calls him is hero, but in the kind of way you say it to a person who gets a bowl down from a shelf you can’t reach. She says she loves him and he says it back and then she says “but.” He cuts her off and tells her he knows. She wants to make sure this knucklehead really gets it and says she needs a family, she needs all of them, not just him. He cries and says that he didn’t realize before that for them to be together she had to give up absolutely everything. Buddy, this is what we have all been screaming at our televisions for months. Ah well. They hug and cry and Sharon wanders out in Frank’s suit jacket. She asks Brandon to liven the place up by playing the piano. He wonders what she’s doing in the coat and she smiles and tells him that Frank was wearing it when he last told her he loved her. It’s just stuff, a coat, a necklace, maybe a note scribbled long ago, but it’s powerful stuff. Sometimes it’s what we need to get by.

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Callie stays outside and Jude finds her. She tells him she wants to come home and we flashback once more. Callie and Jude are sitting listening to a social worker tell them about how they are going to go live with another family for a while. They ask where their dad is and learn he’s in jail. Callie says, “You aren’t going to split us up, are you?” The social worker promises to keep them together until they can find a home for them both. Back we go to the present and the home that’s just right for the two of them.

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While the family listens to Brandon play, Stef sits in the Prius and wrings every last tear out of anyone watching. She thanks her dad for the car. She says she’s going to miss him and that she knows he did the best that he could. She forgives him. She whispers, “I love you Daddy. Go, Padres.” Then it starts to snow because climate change is a real thing. Lena walks out of the house pulling of the very rare, heels, skirt, hoodie combination and gets in the car. Stef says, “So, do you want to have a baby?”

So just how hard did you guys cry during this episode?

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