The Fosters: First Impressions
The Fosters is back! The Fosters is back!
Okay, I don't actually know if I'm excited about this, because at the mid-season break I was so grossed out that I was pretty damn ready to give this show up for good. I guess I should be grateful that Brandon didn't have sex with his little sister after the adoption went through moving them from foster siblings to actual complete and total forever siblings? But I didn't feel very grateful, since these events were only separated by one episode and I'm still working on scrubbing my brain of the image. And I don't hold out hope that the adoption means they'll permanently drop "Brallie" (vom) and just go on telling the other lovely stories that they tell. But I do hold out hope that there will be other stories that are good enough to watch that I can... overlook the grossness? We'll see. But I'm not ready to say goodbye to Stef and Lena. Or Mariana. Or, for the love of all that is holy, Jude. I am not willing to let go of Jude. Yet.
So here I am.
The "previouslies" are already hurting my brain. So much stuff I don't remember the details of (particularly the hit-and-run). Anyway, we're starting with the performance of Brandon's composition at Disney Hall. They pan across the family (including New Jesus!) and... oh for fuck's sake, they get to Callie and she has brother/sister sex flashbacks. THEY DIDN'T WASTE A SECOND TO TORTURE US.
Opening credits. I'm weak, you guys! The opening always suckers me right back in, even when I'm disgusted. No fair!
Naturally, based on that Disney Hall performance, Brandon has been invited to final callbacks for Juilliard. Of course he has. But because Brandon has just the worst life ever, Juilliard still charges tuition! Poor Brandon! All the worst things happen to him!
AJ and his brother are huggy and sad because their grandmother died.
Mike's helping to load up the car with her stuff and a picture of the boys breaks. He looks at it significantly, and calls work to tell them not to bother running the prints on that pen he got from AJ's brother (I'll remember his name at some point, I'm sure).
Brandon overhears his moms worrying about money, so he walks away with his standard Brandon hangdog look. But Annie Potts is there! (aka Sharon, Stef's mom) Sharon is very displeased about what the insurance will or will not cover in terms of Stef's health situation. Monte shows up to apologize to both Stef and Lena. Lord, this is awkward. She offers to resign from Anchor Beach. That's a bit extreme, Monte!
Emma is over at the house trying to help Mariana put together her campaign for junior class president. I'd vote for Mariana! Jesus is a dick about it, so I guess the actor replacement hasn't really changed the nature of the character. So far. But holy crap this guy is tall! Lexi shows up from being deported. Somehow her family magically all got visas. Seems likely. Brandon walks in and see Emma and Lexi and actually says something funny for once!
Brandon: It's like an ex-girlfriend convention in here. Want me to call Hayley, maybe she can come over?
Sound the trumpets, Brandon made a funny!
Some extremely tightly-wound bespectacled boy is yelling at Callie about privatized foster homes after she gives a speech about her website. A foster care advocate (played by a very familiar actress... I'll figure it out) wants to invest $50,000 in Callie (or more likely her website).
Lena tells Monte she should stay on at the school but needs to get her act together and look up the word "boundaries." Not in those exact words, but let's face it, that was the gist.
Connor is packing up to move away forever and ever and Jude's perfect little heart is breaking. "My dad will never change," Connor tells him. I don't know, his dad spent last Father's Day with a yard full of queermos and he lived through it, I feel like there's some wiggle room.
Well, darn it all, the lab ran that fingerprint test after all and they do match Ty's (AJ's brother). Mike explains the whole thing to Stef, who is livid.
I think Mike should probably point out that if Brandon had basically murdered a town full of children Stef would try to cover it up.
Lexi and Jesus flirt with each other. In the bathroom.
I know nothing gets me hotter than a bathroom shared by 23 adolescents. It probably smells amazing. Then Lexi pushes Mariana to go as sexy as possible with her presidential campaign (ugh, take note, Bernie Sanders, time to sex it up a bit!) but naturally Emma overreacts about how girls can be fun-and-smart-sexy and not just in-your-face-sexy and decides she shouldn't be running this campaign and needs to go home. That was fast! Regardless, Mariana levels with Lexi that she doesn't want her help with the campaign. "No hard feelings," they allege. Seems likely.
The foster care advocate talks to Callie and Stef and Lena, and Callie tries to talk to her about Jack (the aforementioned bespectacled kid). The lady promises to "make some calls." I'm sure nothing bad will happen. The second she's out of earshot, she makes a bitchy phone call trying to find out where that kid has been placed. From here on out I will be referring to this character as Miss Hannigan. You know who she lives to exploit? ORPHANS, that's who! (This is just a wild guess.)
Stef finds her mother in a trailer with Rob Morrow. His name is Will, and he's an anarchist of some sort? (Rob Morrow has directed some episodes of this show, and I continue to be delighted that FreeForm -- formerly ABC Family -- employs all the young stars of the hit TV shows Generation X was brought up on, whether it's as the parents of protagonists or as directors) (I mean Marla Sokoloff! Annie Potts! Lorraine Toussaint! Come on, Joanna Kerns [Maggie Seaver] is one of their directors!)
Mariana lets it spill that Jesus is actually failing Wrestling School, but it turns out he really isn't, and the real reason he left is that there's too much pressure to take steroids. So... that's the end of that! Which is ridiculous. But he can't go back to Anchor Beach because there's a long waiting list and he's not on it! Oops! I always lose track of whether Anchor Beach is a private or public school and, if it's public, it makes no sense that he can't go. But if it's private, it makes no sense that this family can afford it (although maybe Lena gets a pile of tuition waivers for her ever-multiplying brood?). Monte decides to go ahead and ignore the policy and give Jesus special treatment by giving him a spot at the school. This gives Lena discomfort because principles!
Brandon and Callie have a miserable conversation agreeing to tell each other if they're dating anyone so they don't have to find out from someone else. Don't you hate it when your sibling doesn't tell you first when they're dating someone, since they know it'll hurt you? I swear when this show ends, Brandon and Callie can just jump right over to The Bold & the Beautiful, a show that is very, very comfortable with keeping every gross thing in the family. (And hey, they already have a connection there in the form of Joanna Johnson, EP of The Fosters and Karen Spencer on B&B!)
Brandon asks Sharon for stock tips. That wasn't a joke.
At the funeral home (where Mike is footing the bill for everything), Ty tells AJ he needs to skip town and fills him in on the accident. AJ puts the pieces of the puzzle together and realizes that Ty hit the car Mariana and Jesus were in.
Stef approves of letting Jesus jump the line to get a spot at the school. Lena is a little disappointed that Stef isn't more principled, but she does have great arms so it's not that big a deal. Sharon pops in to tell the moms about Brandon's Juilliard situation and wants to invest the $7500 left from his "hand money" but she's not sure she can turn $7500 into $150,000 in one year because this is television where (a) you apparently have to pay upfront for all four years of college and (b) there is literally no such thing as any sort of financial aid. (Plus, she gave them all college funds! More to invest! Sheesh, people. Be more resourceful.) Also, apparently Sharon had Stef's medical records to a different radiologist, who wants her to come in for more tests, and Stef refuses. It's a racket! These doctors just want to make money!
The whole family is out to eat at some elegant-looking restaurant, and the moms insist that Brandon should go ahead to the Juilliard audition and if he gets in, they'll figure it out. Mike does not say, "Oh, how can I help as he is also my son? And I seem to have a few grand stashed away seeing as I'm paying for some lady's funeral?"
Then Will randomly starts spouting off about the Industrial Penal Complex (Jesus is tickled at the word "penal," naturally) and how awful cops are. Lena and Jude chat a bit about Connor's departure, to which Lena can say virtually nothing. Brandon goes up to the bar to get a champagne cocktail for his grandma and, of course, the bartender is super-cute. That said, she's a bartender. Which makes her at least 21. And Stef just referred to Brandon as a "minor," so I guess he's still 17. Can this network quit it? Can we have Brandon in an appropriate relationship please? Can we give him a love interest who is neither his sister nor his statutory rapist? That would rule. In other news, there's an empty piano just happening to sit around in the restaurant, so Brandon simply must play it.
AJ asks Callie how it feels to be adopted, and she doesn't get the hint because she emphasizes that the best part of it is knowing she and Jude won't be separated again. Callie! AJ's being adopted without his brother! Stop it!
Naturally the entire restaurant full of customers are delighted that a mouth-breathing teenager is playing the piano during their dinner, and the whole thing gets Callie so hot and bothered that she accepts AJ's invitation to a comic book convention. It also prompts Lena to plead with Stef to go ahead and get that second opinion with the doctor.
Lena goes over to talk to Connor's father, asking him not to let Connor give up on him.
Callie tells Brandon about her maybe-date with AJ while Brandon is putting on a shirt. I suppose the shirtlessness is supposed to suggest some sort of sibling sexual tension. Callie leaves and Brandon sighs the heavy sigh of the world-weary. Wanting to have sex with your sister is exhausting!
AJ and Ty get on a bus to Phoenix.
Ruh-roh! Lexi has decided to run against Mariana for class president!
Connor's dad has apparently tried to talk him into staying, but he won't. He goes to apologize to Jude for "not getting it," and Jude cries a little and they hug and maybe I cry a little too shut up I'm very tough.
Tightly-wound bespectacled Jack comes to yell at Callie because her attempts to help got him moved into a shitty group home. Later she asks that Miss Hannigan lady (I still can't remember the character's name and I'm still working on the actress... was she on ER or Chicago Hope or something? I feel like I've seen her with a stethoscope. Something from that era.) if she'd made that call about Jack and she lies. Then they set her up as an administrator on Fost and Found, Callie's website. She smiles with just a touch of evil. Subtle, show. Reeeeeal subtle.
Help me out, readers, WHO IS THIS ACTRESS? I know SOMEbody remembers her!!
Stef's biopsy shows that she has DCIS, which is known as Stage 0 cancer, and she recommends a lumpectomy.
Oh, oh dear.
Okay, Callie goes to the message board on her website, and someone has posted, "Callie, is it true you had sex with your foster brother?" BWAHAHAHAHAHA.