“Army Wives” Mini-cap: There’s a new wife in town

After all the melodrama of recent weeks, the latest episode of Army Wives was relatively laid back. In other words, not much happened, but we did get to see some character development and interaction between the main characters — and that’s a good thing.

The most interesting development was the arrival of Evan’s wife, Jennifer. She looks a little bit like Jennifer Beals, doesn’t she? Coincidence? Knowing this show, I’m sure it is.

We know from the first mention of her that Jennifer will be a sort of rival for Claudia Joy. Even though Evan has been at Ft. Marshall awhile, Jennifer is just now joining him because she has an active law practice and had to take care of that before she could move. (Remember, Claudia Joy gave up being a lawyer to marry Michael.) Is anyone surprised when the two butt heads at an FRG meeting? Didn’t think so.

Jennifer suggests a “Hot Army Wives” calendar as an FRG fundraiser. C.J. likes the idea of a calendar but, being more conservative, suggests slice-of-life scenes. The two ideas are put to a vote and C.J.’s idea wins. However, we soon learn that Jennifer commissions a hot wives calendar anyway, so the two calendars will compete for funds. I know which one I’d buy.

(Side note: Andy over at zap2it.com noticed that the background music for the calendar photo shoot was The Decemberists’ “16 Military Wives,” a war protest song. Oops.)

I’m sure we’ll see more about the C.J. vs. Jennifer power struggle, but I like the fact that this storyline gives the characters a chance to rally around C.J. and be a little catty. Not that Jennifer goes out of her way to win friends and influence Army wives.

In other news, Trevor goes to an addiction support group and Roxy goes to Al-Anon. He’s ashamed of his actions; she’s afraid she’s fallen for yet another addict. I think these two are going to be OK.

C.J. accidentally lets news of Denise’s indiscretion with Getti slip to Michael, and Michael is furious. Denise confronts him and finally tells him it’s none of his business. And she looks quite gorgeous doing so.

Roland’s mother, Vivian, comes to help with the baby. She believes that Roland should earn a living while Joan stays home and raises a family, so Roland spends the episode defending his manhood. Of course, by the closing credits, his 30 years of mommy issues are resolved. The magic of television.

Chase returns home for a while and Pamela tells him about Tim, the stalker. At first, Chase wants Pamela to lay low to keep the family safe, but she reminds him that he fell for her because she can take care of herself. “Good point,” he says. That was easy.

Emmalin has a new Army pen pal named Logan in Iraq, and he’s awesome and smart and funny and likes the Transcendentalists just like Emma, even though she’s only read a little Emerson. This pen-pal thing was Michael and C.J.’s idea, but the way Emma is giggling, I have a feeling they’ll soon regret it.

Denise is relaxed and happy, thinking about redecorating. She has never had her own bank account, so she opens one. Roland congratulates her. I don’t know why. In another nice scene with the wives, Roxy helps Denise make a to-do list for becoming the “new, liberated Denise.”

At the end of the episode, C.J. meets Denise at the Holy City Tattoo parlor, where Denise is going to have the Sanskrit symbol for “beautiful mistake” inked on the inside of her arm. Hello? The only thing more clichéd would be the Chinese character for love. And the only place more painful for a tattoo than the inside of your arm would be inappropriate to mention on this site. Sure, Denise with a tattoo is hot, but Denise with an imaginative tattoo would be hotter.

Since things are moving slowly at Ft. Marshall, we’re going to take a break from recapping the next few episodes and wrap up the season after the finale in November. Meanwhile, when you have a few minutes and a couple of Kleenex, take a look at this wonderfully joyful video of a soldier being reunited with his dogs after a 14-month deployment. Whatever we may think of the war, I think we all can celebrate those who serve. May they come home very soon.

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