“The Fosters” recap (1.6): “People can surprise you”

Previously on The Fosters, Mike drank a little too much at Mariana’s quinceanera. Stef and Lena played Memory: When We Last Had Sex Edition and both lost.  They tried to schedule their afternoon delight only to be interrupted by Jesus (the kid, not the water walking dude), who was freaking out because he and Lexi had unprotected sex even though he lives in a house made of condoms. He got caught getting a stranger to buy him the morning after pill because without an ID those are the only drugs on the planet you can’t score. Stef gave Lexi the pill without telling Lena or Lexi’s parents because the only thing worse than two 15-year-olds having sex is two 15-year-olds raising a kid. Mariana developed an interest in a boy and an interest in his interests so that just maybe he might also be interested in her. Sadly, she sucked at both poetry and getting the boy’s attention. Ross finally told Rachel that he likes her and thinks not-so-Super Wyatt is a bad choice. Callie told Brandon to back off because she’s sick of moving out of good homes because teenage boys can’t keep it in their pants. Jude got bullied for painting his nails blue, Lena delivered the best parental speech this side of Burt Hummel, and Jude’s new friend showed his solidarity by coming to lunch with blue nails too. Stef and Lena finally got some alone time in the only place free from teenagers, the backseat of their car.

stef lena 1

We begin as we always begin in the heart of the home, the kitchen where the moms are doing what they always do, providing sustenance to their kids. I love how 1950s these two are if, you know, Harriet left Ozzie for June Cleever.  Last week Lena used her phone to try to schedule sexy time, this week she’s all business, organizing a different activity for each kid, and Stef’s trip to make up for being gay by stocking her dad’s fridge with food. Overachieving lesbians, unite!

Mariana wanders in and bitches about her nose ring being itchy which Stef find hilarious because Mariana’s the dipshit who pierced her face in the bathroom. Lena asks Stef to pick up some wine in bottles because the kind they normally drink comes in a box. Stef calls Lena “fancy pants” which is, sadly, not a prelude to more sexy time.

Brandon, Callie, and Jesus appear and Lena proclaims it a miracle that all the teenagers to be awake before ten on a Saturday.  Jesus asks Mrs. Hughes what the menu will be for Lord and Lady Rivera and she replies that Mrs. Patmore will be whipping up a heavenly five-course meal or Lena will be making halibut.

Callie is in her own little world, scrolling through her pictures on her phone when Lena asks her if she’s fine walking to her support group. Lena spies the pictures and notes that Callie has a real talent for uploading stock photos. Before leaving the room Jesus tells his moms that he wants to go to a church retreat with Lexi the next weekend. In most families this would be the cause of much pride but with lesbians it’s met with a healthy dose of “we’ll think about it” followed by a chaser of “hell no are we letting our kid listen to some Bible thumpers tell him his moms are an abomination.” Except for the thinly veiled anti-Catholic sentiment, maybe not so 1950s after all.

wyatt closet

Callie and Wyatt are hanging out at another house he claims belongs to his family.  The bank has foreclosed and  Wyatt is going to have a party to celebrate the death of his childhood.

Because Callie is the best, she calls him out and ask him if it’s really his house.  He takes her upstairs and shows her the drawings he did in the closet of his childhood room.  He tells her that every time his life sucked he would go in the closet and draw.  Oh Wyatt, so many of us spent time in the closet when everything sucked and we all found ways to deal with our feelings. Welcome young lesbo, you’re one of us.  He tries to pretend that the drawing and the foreclosed house are no big deal and when Callie tries to talk to him about it he changes the subject.  He wants to define their relationship.  She bobs and weaves and does everything but answer.  He tries to get her to agree to come to the party and she reminds him that she’s on probation and a rager in an empty house is probably not a good plan.  Then she skips off to her mandatory foster kid support group (still no sign of Jude).

lena doorway

“Hallelujah!”

Brandon is playing his piano and Lena is standing in the doorway with a choir of angels singing behind her.  Wait, was I the only one who heard that singing at the sight of her?  Fine, maybe I made that up but her hair, people.  She wishes him good luck and assures him that the teacher would be lucky to have him as his student.  Brandon reminds her that he failed twice before but Lena doesn’t care, she and Stef will be proud no matter what happens at the audition.

Lena runs into lying Mariana in the hallway who says she’s off to have coffee with Garret.  Lena offers to drive and Mariana gets twitchy but grudgingly allows Lena to give her a lift.  Oh Mariana, you bestow your favors so generously on the peons who exist only to do your bidding.

Callie is barely paying attention in her support group until a girl named Sarah mentions the Olmsteads.  Suddenly, Callie’s ears prick up and she’s in full on Lassie mode. What is it girl? Did Sarah fall down the well into a bad situation with your former foster family in which something truly terrible happened to you? Did she girl?  After the group is over Callie asks Sarah to have coffee with her to talk it over, answer a few probing and overly personal questions, the usual.

callie lassie

Mariana is meeting someone but that’s not Garret, that’s drug money mama, Ana.  Oh Mariana. They chat like besties, Mariana says her best friend is dating Jesus and it totally sucks.  Ana compliments her on the nose ring because she’s not like a regular mom, she’s a cool mom, who only occasionally asks the kid she gave up for money.  Ana says she’s sorry to have missed Mariana’s birthday and asks if she had a quinceañera.  Apparently, Ana was the only one in the tri-state area not at the party.  She makes up for it by giving Mariana a present, surely purchased with Mariana’s ill-gotten funds.  It’s a quinceañera bear and Mariana loves it best of all.

Brandon is pacing the steps of the porch, dressed like The Bass Player in the Wonders, and looking at his phone.  It’s 4:20 and Mike is otherwise engaged, eating a sandwich with Ted and Marshall. Brandon calls his dad and tells him that he’s twenty minutes late and that Brandon’s going to miss the audition.

At Stef’s dad’s house, she walks in with a bag of groceries because she’s the kind of gay who overachieves as a daughter as penance for being gay and they start yapping at each other.  He tells her that she doesn’t have to keep stocking his fridge because he’s a grown-up.  She tells him that TV dinners are not real food.  He asked if she saw the Padres game the night before she laughs and says she missed a bunch of the end because Jesus was screaming at the TV.  Stef dad says he loves that kid and that he should invite him to a game since it’s not really Brandon’s thing.  She tells him that Jesus and Brandon would love an invite to go to a game but not the next weekend because Jesus wants to go to Jesus camp.  Come on, Jesus yelling at the Padres as a segue into a chat about religion? Love it.   Stef’s dad is surprised and asks if they are raising the kids Catholic.  Stef laughs and tells him he knows they don’t do church. They only worship at the altar of Lena’s flawless beauty.  He suggests that not only should they be raising the kids in a “good Christian church” he can’t understand why Stef stopped going.  Oh parents, so utterly oblivious to the scars of our youth, even the ones inflicted by their own actions.

stef dad

Stef laughs and says, “Really?” and then asks him to jump in the way back machine to when she was in high school and he caught her cuddling with her friend Tess on the couch and instead of talking to her sent her to talk to a pastor who told her that being gay was a sin.  Her dad says he was just trying to help her make the right choices.  He can’t see why when she had Mike and Brandon she decided to give all that up for Lena.

Stef is aghast, but not surprised, that he’s calling being gay a choice but instead of pulling out 37 studies, three Power Point presentations on nature versus nurture, and calling an expert to the stand she pauses and twitches a smile.  She’ll play his game.  She’ll assume that she can choose who she loves. She’ll pretend that for him. She’ll pretend that the sight of Lena’s smile doesn’t give her butterflies, that having Lena near her makes the air feel both more still and more electric, that being with another woman isn’t both the most mind-blowing experience and the most comfortable thing in the world.  She play the game that she chose to throw away “normal” to be with Lena.

She says “So what if I chose Lena?”  What’s wrong with being with a wonderful woman who sets me on fire and holds me when I won’t let anyone else see my broken places.  She asks “So what if I chose Lena?  I chose to be happy, and who I love shouldn’t matter, only my happiness.”  He sputters and she walks out.

stef dad 2

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