Thursday, August 21, 2008

TSLOTAT: Episode 3: "I Feel Sick"

Welcome back, extensive fanbase. Your dreams were your ticket out. Welcome back to that same old place that you laughed about. The names have all changed since you hung around, but those dreams have remained, and they're turned around. Who'd have thought they'd lead you back here where we need you? We tease you a lot 'cause we've got you on the spot. Welcome back.

Today we'll be revuing TSLOTAT episode 3. It's entitled "I Feel Sick," which makes me think of that bonus song in Rock Band, except that's actually "I'm So Sick." The episode was written by Brenda Hampton and directed by Ron Underwood, the same pairing that brought you episode 1. Episode 2 was also written by Brenda Hampton, but was directed by Keith Truesdell. I just thought I should let you know who's responsible for this.

We open on Molly Ringwald and Ashley at a gas stations that's running a special "free tampons with fill up" promotion. Molly Ringwald admonishes Ashley for showing too much cleavage (even though there's actually no cleavage visible -- believe me, I've looked), then admonishes some guy for checking out the nonexistent cleavage.

A woman approaches and turns out to be Dr. Hightower. She was the Jergens family doctor, but now they hate her because her new partner (business, not lesbian) is Molly Ringwald's husband's ex-wife's husband. Molly Ringwald just can't abide her husbands' ex-wives getting remarried, it seems. She asks the doctor, "Are you on good terms with your husband's ex-wife's husband?" and the doctor's response is, "What?" My thoughts exactly. I don't really understand the logic of that chain of hatred. I could understand if she hated her husband's ex-wife because she was jealous or something, but if anything, I would think she'd appreciate the existence of the husband's ex-wife's husband for making the husband's ex-wife less of a threat. I guess I just don't understand dames (woo, callback to episode 1!).

We now go live to Amy Jergens's crotch. She can't zip up her trousers because of her swollen belly. Madison and Lauren are there watching her get dressed, so that's pretty hot. Ashley stops by to give Amy some free gas station tampons, but since she can't use them she donates them to Madison.

After the title sequence, we see Ben making out with a large plush bear. When he's caught in flagrante delicto by the Asians, he claims that he's just practicing for Amy. Even though Alice thinks that he's moving too fast, she offers to help him plan his spontaneous first kiss moment.

At school, Jack whines to Grace about how her parents don't want them to see each other. They're totally star-cross'd lovers, like Olivia Hussey and that guy who was in that movie as well.

Elsewhere at school, counselor Mark Molina approaches Adrian, who is wearing an "I recycle boys" T-shirt. That's some good production design. Mark Molina is like, "I was idly browsing through your grades, test scores, and other confidential files, and I noticed that you're pretty smart despite being a slut. You should go to Columbia University. Bet you'd really love New York!" Adrian responds, "I really love sex." Mark Molina tells her to stop by his office, where he'll help her explore some options. ;) Jack, who's been watching this scene, asks her if she propositions every guy she talks to, and she's like "I saw you standing there," implying that she was just putting on a show for his benefit and isn't really that much of a slut, even though we all know she really is. Meanwhile, Mark Molina goes and masturbates in his office, and as Adrian walks away, Jack checks out her ass and fondly reminisces.

Madison and Lauren are at the gas station, getting more free tampons. Apparently they've already filled up their own cars, so now they've recruited Lauren's brother Jason to bring them to get more. They must really be tearing through those things. Anyway, Jason tells them that their parents won't let them hang out with Amy Jergens anymore when they find out she got knocked up.

Back at the ranch, Ashley summons Amy for dinner. Amy's lukewarm on the concept until she finds out that they're having hamburgers, at which point she's like, "Hamburgers? GREAT! OM NOM NOM" and jumps out of bed. Ashley also tells Amy that they saw Dr. Hightower at the gas station, which freaks her out because unbeknownst to her family, Amy has been seeing Dr. Hightower about her pregnant womanly issues. Please enjoy this screenshot that makes it look like Amy has cat ears.

During the commercials, I suggest you take a moment to brace yourself for an onslaught of douchiness, because it's time for a Grace's dad scene! At least it's short. He just goes off on a rant about how his house is a dictatorship and orders Grace to stop dating Jack, and Tom to get some ice cream.

Amy is at her computer, presumably deleting hundreds of emails from Madison and Lauren about fearing the quickening, when she gets a phone call from Dr. Hightower admonishing her for not having told her parents yet. Elsewhere, Adrian and Ricky make out (pictured) to weird synth horn music.

Winston Zeddmore is squirming at his desk, then he picks up the phone. Who's he gonna call? Ricky's mom, unless Ricky starts showing up to his appointments. Molly Ringwald criticizes Amy for having swollen feet (she's very observant), and Amy stutters a lot.

Back at Ben's place, he's graduated from stuffed bears to inflatable women. Just kidding! That's actually Alice, and they're planning his big make-out session with Amy. Alice has decided that his best option is to take her to the county fair for the romantic ambience that you can only get with carnies. After she leaves, we see that he hasn't abandoned the bear after all as he caresses it and says, "Poor Henry, poor poor Henry." At this point I'd forgotten that Alice's boyfriend's name was Henry and assumed that that was what he'd named the bear.

After he's finished fucking Adrian, Ricky immediately phones Grace and starts hitting on her again. When he finds out about Grace's parents not letting her date Jack, he proposes a hare-brained scheme where Grace will sneak out to see Jack while pretending she's dating Ricky (because although her parents won't let her date a fellow Jesus freak, they'll be fine with her dating a smarmy satyromaniac who's already currently boning the school slut and has also knocked up at least one chick). This idea doesn't go over too well with Adrian, who immediately sees through the ruse, gets all jealous, and says that the two of them are not even friends, but just "bed buddies" (she means fuck buddies). The other notable thing about this scene is that we find out that Adrian and Jack actually did have sex, putting an end to weeks of speculation (from me).

On the other hand, Jack is totally into this plan, because the possibility of getting another shot at Grace's tight embrace outweighs his concerns that Ricky is only offering to do it as a way of getting into Grace's tight embrace. (Apparently, neither of them is satisfied by Adrian's embrace; I'm guessing her embrace is not as tight as it could be due to her having been around the block a few too many times, if you know what I mean.) Then Ricky comes up and says, "Hey, star-cross'd lovers," ruining my star-cross'd lovers reference from a few paragraphs ago.

While Molly Ringwald and her husband have a fight, Ashley checks out Amy's boobs and tells her she looks sexy (seriously!).

After another three or four hours, they finally get to the fair, and it's the social event of the season! Simply everyone is there! Amy and Ben are there! Grace and Jack are there! Even Madison and Lauren are there, watching Henry and Alice make out! County fairs were never this popular in my county. The only people missing are Adrian and Ricky, who are rehashing the "Adrian wants Ricky to stay and fuck her some more but Ricky wants to leave, then they argue about it and he leaves" scene for about the twentieth time. I honestly wondered for a moment if I'd somehow gotten confused and had already done a revue of this episode, but I was actually thinking of this scene from my last revue: "Adrian and Ricky are all post-coital. Adrian doesn't want Ricky to leave, but he does, and says he'll call her later. Why am I watching this." The same description could apply here, except that this time he says he won't call her later, and Adrian does the classic "slide down the door to indicate sadness" bit at the end.

Back at the fair, Ben tries to move in for the kill kiss, but due to a combination of morning sickness and motion sickness, Amy vomits instead. Amy goes home, and Ashley asks her if she's pregnant (citing the boobs). After a lot of stuttering, Amy admits it. Ashley promises not to tell anyone.

In the denouement, Ben shows up, ostensibly to bring Amy her jacket and some ginger ale, but really it's just an excuse to kiss her and savor the acidic taste of the chunks she blew earlier. And now I feel sick.

Final thoughts: I guess this episode was a little better than the last two, but not by much. There just wasn't much interesting stuff going on, besides the revelation of Ben's plushie fetish. Maybe if I were more emotionally invested in the characters, I would care about Ben and Amy's first kiss (besides being grossed out because she had just puked), but since I only care about them in terms of how much I can make fun of them, I can't say it did much for me. And there was too much of Grace's dad for my liking. But at least the gas station and the fair provided brief changes of scenery from the couple of sets that the majority of the series takes place in. All in all, a rather forgettable episode.

On the next TSLOTAT: Grace singlehandedly fights off a couple of would-be rapists, earning her the ridicule of the entire town! Stay tuned for the next Jawsome Olde Tyme Revue -- same jaw-time, same jaw-channel!*

  • "Sooner or later, you're gonna have to tell your parents that you're fat." -- Lauren
  • "I really love sex." -- Adrian
  • "You had me at corn dogs." -- Amy

* May not actually be the same time. And this isn't actually on a channel.

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