“The Fosters” recap (1.04): Cry if you want to

Everyone piles onto the dance floor for some executive producer JLo product placement. Mike and Dana head to the dance floor and Lena pulls Stef up. As the grown-ups arrive, Mariana storms off after telling Lexi that they are through as best friends and maybe more in Mariana’s dream world. Talys comes up and rubs all over Brandon like every cat who knows I am allergic does to me. Callie peels off and sits down next to Jude, and Brandon walks away from Talya. Talys follows him to the kitchen where Brandon says Callie told him what Talya did and because Talya isn’t from Rosewood she immediately cops to reading Callie’s journal. Whoops, Brandon didn’t even know about that part. He tells her that they are done and storms off as she calls after him about Liam.

Mariana is re-applying makeup when Lexi appears to try to talk to her. Lexi tries to explain that they weren’t lying, they just hadn’t told Mariana yet. Oh, the closet is a tough place, Lexi. Mariana says the worst part was hearing her brother list all the shitty things Mariana has done and not having her best friends defend her. Hmm, I agree that the itemization was crappy, but also crappy, Mariana, is doing all those things in the first place. It’s not like he lied.

Mike’s at the bar drinking a double shot of “my life sucks, I have no family, and I wish I could change everything.” Stef tells him to pace himself and he tells her it’s a party she should lighten up. The look on her face says maybe drinking in moderation isn’t his strong suit.

Lena and Dana are sitting chatting about the party and Dana expresses her concern that it cost too much. Lena tells her that it’s important for them to provide Mariana with a quinceañera as a way to help her connect to the latino community. Dana counters that Mariana isn’t a part of the community simply based on the color of her skin. Then shit gets real. Lena says that color has everything to do with community membership for black people, according to her mother. This launches a discussion of the differing experiences of people based on the color of their skin. Lena tells her mother that being raised by a black mother and a white father left her feeling like she didn’t belong in either community. Lena says that her mother assumes that her experience of being biracial has made her life easier. Dana counters by saying that Lena will never know what it is like to be a black woman in America. Lena gets up from the table and leaves.

This is a real conversation about the ways in which belonging to two separate groups simultaneously makes feeling at home with either group impossible. Wow, I sure am glad that this is a conversation about race and that we never have these sorts of issues in the LGBT community. It would be terrible to think that we have been exclusionary to those people who don’t fit neatly into the lesbian box. How difficult must it be to not be quite straight enough to fit with the heteros and not quite gay enough to fit with the lesbians? Thank god we’re all so much more evolved than that.

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