Sunday, November 22, 2015

Season 2, Episode 7


Allison is about 5 or 6 months pregnant. She is at a book party and Noah seems to be the life of it, while she stands alone. She's ready to leave, insists that they go, but he says that although it doesn't look it, this is business for him and he needs to stay. He converses with his publishing assistant Eden who has booked him on loads of things and has a "rush, rush, rush" mentality. She finds his pregnant girlfriend a mere, occasionally irritating, nobody.

When Allison catches Noah's eye and he waves her over to meet a group he's been talking to, she doesn't have much in common with them, especially when she says she hasn't read his book. She retreats again, when Eden "steals" Noah.

She takes her shoes off and rubs her sore feet. A friendly woman comes up and inquires about the baby. Is this her first? No, it's not. She says she and Noah are not married yet, his divorce isn't final. Eden comes over and pulls her away. That woman's from Page 6, she's a gossip columnist. She tells Allison not to talk to anyone else without asking her. Then, Eden leaves and forgets Allison's existence again. Allison goes into the kitchen and asks permission to sit down. The only person who was nice to her out there was working her. She has more in common with the kitchen staff, who are genuinely kind. That's what we're supposed to take away from this, but Allison was a successful nurse and could go back to that if she tried. So, this theme that she's out of her realm if she is not waiting tables doesn't play well.

I should get satisfaction from it, since she thought she was too good for the Lockharts and now can't fit in with the intellectuals. But she does have a niche and won't seek it out, so it just makes her weak, and poor-me annoying. I guess she was independent last week, practicing yoga, but that too seemed phony. Athena's world (and a gimmicky one at that) not hers. But she felt at peace there, so why she has apparently plopped herself back into Noah's world where she repeatedly feels invisible is irritating. Some people do repeat patterns and, in doing so, are responsible for their own continued unhappiness. So, I guess what Allison is facing is realistic, but it's not good television.

The show is more truthful psychologically this season than when Treem was all "the point of view, reflects their psyche and personality" earlier, though. So, it rings deeper and is not as trite as it once was. Still, it has its moments.

Eden wants him to work on Thanksgiving. Allison is angry. Noah insists that he'll be back in time for dinner and will pick up the turkey. She accepts it.

She goes into her luxury apartment. Athena is in the lobby. The fancy doorman wouldn't let her up. Allison is self-conscious. Doesn't want to be "that girl" who puts on airs. This makes me laugh because I don't see her as a "down home" kind of person. And the shows attempt to push her as a small town girl with values is laughable, because she doesn't seem to respect much, as far as I can see. She hated Montauk and not just because that's where Gabriel died. It seemed too slow for her. She hated family too. And she wanted the millions she thought the Lockhart ranch was worth. So, when they present her as non-materialistic I don't buy it. She sure liked using up Helen's expensive shampoo!

She takes Athena upstairs and Athena raves at the swankiness. She lays down on the sofa and wonders if it's suede. Allison won't say, but Athena confirms it is. They start on Thanksgiving dinner. I did not think of Athena as the domestic type, but she is more motherly this season. She brought her mother's cookbook. It's worn, but welcome. Allison thought she'd forget. Athena says she wants a tour and there's a sign on the boys room saying keep out. Allison doesn't open it, she says they respect their privacy.

The other room is the girls', but only Stacey uses it. Whitney hasn't been there yet. The younger kids like her. The older ones don't. Well, in my experience, the younger ones wouldn't like her either, since they probably want their mom and dad back together more than anyone.

Athena really wants to see the baby's room. Allison takes her into an office. She says that Noah is only using it this way until the baby comes. Athena says that you're supposed to prepare for the baby before hand. She wonders how much this place is setting them back and by probing Allison's silence and sideways glances, she figures out that Allison paid for the apartment with money from her house. It's only until Noah gets his book money she says.

Athena can't believe that Allison sold their home. Allison says it's her home. Her grandmother left it to her. Only because Athena told her too. Allison is startled to hear this. Athena says it's true. When Allison was born, Athena told her mother to skip over her in the will. She wanted Allison to have the security that she knew Athena could never give her. She wanted Allison to keep the house so that her children could have that same security too. She shouldn't support Noah, so that he can live a high life that Allison doesn't even want herself. Noah should pay for this.

Allison says she wants to contribute. She doesn't want to live off of men, like Athena does. Athena wonders if she will spend the rest of her life just trying to be the opposite of everything she thinks Athena is, rather than doing what's best for her. I wonder if she remembers that she probably married Cole for the security his family could offer. Becoming a Lockhart meant moving away from waitressing at Oscar's -- until it didn't. So, it's not just Athena who has that history, as far as I can glimpse.

Anyway, this tells us a lot about Noah and it's something that Cole would never do. Live off the equity in her house. Although the writers made this clear of Cole from the beginning, a lot of viewers didn't see it. When he ran after Allison in NY, a lot of them on twitter (and Cody too) thought he was interested in the drugs, not in getting his wife back. It was clear to me he used the drugs as an excuse to follow her, not the other way around. I guess since he sold drugs in the first place, it was hard to see that he wasn't a hypocrite about loving the land, but it didn't seem that way to me.

Allison looks like she regretted investing her money in Noah's dreams -- and being asked to do that, but she tells Athena it's too late. The house is already in escrow.

Her friend Lucy or whatever (Jane actually) comes for dinner. They haven't seen each other in ages. Jane has finished school. Has Allison been back to Montauk since leaving. Uh, no, no she hasn't, Allison stammers guiltily, so that everyone but Jane knows she is lying. Jane wonders about the blind date that Allison has fixed her up on. Allison tells her the guy is loaded, but he's kind of obnoxious. Jane thinks loaded is enough to make up for it. Athena is glad to see her again. Again the downhome friendly people compared to the cold stock market crowd that Noah hangs out with.

Time passes and Jane and Max are on the sofa. Dinner is waiting because Noah hasn't shown up yet. Jane is tipsy and says that she and Max should marry. He is drunk too, but says they definitely should not get married. I am embarrassed for Jane, but they start making out and when Allison does nothing except look askance at Athena to interfere, it gets even worse. Athena comes to the rescue (again being more mature than she was in S2) and tells Jane to put her tongue back in her own mouth. I am annoyed that Jane had to be the inappropriate one coming on to Max. He was receptive, but not the initiator and I wish that weren't the case.

Athena says she has something for them to do that is ladies' only. They go into the bedroom and listen to the baby's heartbeat with a stethoscope. Everyone is awed, but Allison can't find the heartbeat at first and panics a bit. Allison, the nurse. Noah comes in, finally home, and Athena asks him if he wants to listen. Sure he says, and he seems to be trying to seem eager and pleasant, more than anything else. He listens and is wowed. He says, "that gets me every time." Allison is dismayed. Since she's not a first time mother, I don't really think her reaction rings true. I mean, why would he act like it's his first time. It means more to her because she's lost a child, but why should he act like he hasn't done this four times before. Yes, it makes her feel second best, but ... well, I guess if you're selfish and the show is presenting selfishness as human and not trying to hide it that's valid. But you can be selfish and not be unrealistic. I don't think it's realistic to think that a man with 4 kids would be as neglectful of them as Allison seems to want Noah to be. In real life, some men are though. ONce they fall "in love" they forget their first families. I don't like Noah any more because he does not do this, but I guess I should not fault Allison for wanting him too, since in real life it happens. And I should credit the writers for making Allison more dimensional. She's not pretending like she wants what is best for the children and most women wouldn't. I just thought since she lost a kid, she might care more about their happiness, since we met her when she was concerned about little Stacy choking. I would think her not wanting kids to be distressed might be her thing. But not wanting Allison to be lonely is her main thing.

When Allison goes out into the living room she sees Eden. She's as disgusted as the audience is and I want her just to go off on the woman. Not only did Noah fail to bring home the turkey, but he has to leave that night. Noah is sorry about the turkey and says he'll go now. Allison says the store is closed. It can't be! They closed at six.

They sit down to dinner and Allison tries to salvage it by saying they are her grandmother's recipes, but Eden keeps interrupting with business. Noah gets a call from Helen and it seems Whitney has run off. Noah tells her Whitney is playing both of them. Sour grapes Max says that if he knows Helen she will keep Noah on the phone all night. But I like the way the audience understands Max's bitter tone, when no one else does. Noah goes into the other room, telling one of the kids that he wishes they could be together too. He returns, but dinner is not a success. Athena, Max and Jane are fed up with Eden too. Eden talks when they say the blessing, at the end when she discovers that Noah is trending. The Page 6 article about his and Allison's affair is generating interest. Neither of them are divorced yet. People are titillated. Allison says she's sorry. But Eden says this can be good for them. Noah was a nobody. Scandal can help publicity. He needs to align himself with the story in the book, Descent. He can talk about the hot affair with Allison and her abusive husband in tv interviews. "Excuse me?" Allison says. He's not really considering this is he? They begin to argue about the book and Noah says she hasn't even read it. She says she has, surprising even me. She read it and knows how he lied about everything in it.

She didn't pursue him. He pursued her. He stalked her. He watched while she was having sex with her husband (I like that she calls Cole that). He says she was having sex for his benefit. So, he didn't think she was raped? She says he didn't know he was there. He killed her in the book. That was his editor's idea. Max said that clearly they have different views (and their conversation is supposed to be a reflection of the whole POV premise of the show, which is preciously self-referential). He says but Allison has done something that no one else has she has given Noah a school teacher living off of his wife's money a personality. Harsh and it puts Noah in the same light in his friend's opinion that Athena had cast him in before, when she talked to Allison about supporting NOah. So, I'm glad about that.

Allison stalks out. Noah goes after her and apologizes. He says that he won't talk about their real life in any interviews he gives. Of course, I'd like to see her protect Cole, but she indicates she wasn't really worried about that anyway. She asks what is really bugging her, "Do you even want this baby?" He pauses in a manner I think is telling, but he kisses her stomach and indicate he is looking forward to the baby.

The doorbell rings and Noah goes to get it.

In the present, the Solloway lawyers are questioning Allison about Scott. She barely saw him at the wedding. She said they were on good terms. He wasn't happy about Cole's deal on The Lobster Roll, but he blamed Cole not her, Allison says.

Cole's Story

Cole is having sex with Luisa when she says "Te amo." He says, "what did you say?" I assume that he must not understand Spanish. He rolls over on top and then pulls away. She asks what is wrong. He goes into the living area. I'm not sure if they are still at Allison's house or not, but he wasn't living in there before. If he is now, did she tell him she wants him to stay there, or what?

He and Luisa make coffee. She invites him over for Thanksgiving. Margaret has given her mother the day off and the family is getting together. He says he's seeing his family. She doesn't believe it. They've been estranged. But he promised he would go by for Thanksgiving. She asked what just happened in there. What does she mean. "When I said I love you, you lost your erection." Pretty funny. Cole says he wants some muffins. Does she? He gets money out of his money clip and leaves.

At the story, his phone rings and it's Scott. He doesn't pick up. Scott calls out, "I'm right behind you." He bugs Cole to sell the house again. He tells him to come over for Thanksgiving. He hasn't seen the family in months. Cole said he promised Luisa he'd go to her family's. Do they even celebrate Thanksgiving, Scott wonders. So, they push every button to make him seem killable. He says he hates to tell Cole this, but Luisa tried the same thing on him. She only wants Cole to get her green card. Cole ignores this.

Oscar shows up (popular convenience store) and asks if they have read Noah's book. The family figures prominently in it. Cole seems more riled up than Scott. Scott being a hothead, I don't know why he doesn't care.

Cole goes back home. He looks at the mantel and asks why Luisa moved the picture of him teaching Gabriel how to ride. She says it was such a cute picture she was just looking at it. Well, I don't think she should have moved its position myself. He moves it back and when pressured more to talk by Luisa he says what happened to his money clip. She says she doesn't know and wasn't concerned, but then realizes that he means to accuse her. She says he better apologize right now. He says there was $150 in that clip and it was right on the table. She leaves, more hurt than angry.

I wonder if they will have Cole take out the money clip, just to prove to the audience that he was deliberately driving her away, but I guess they decide not to belabor the point. I wish we had seen more of them getting together and not just jumped from seeing them talk in the bar to having sex a few episodes later. I know Josh is only supporting, but I'd rather see him with Luisa than with a load of Lockharts who are just extras and not interesting ones at that.

He buys Noah's book (with money from the money clip?) and begins flipping through it. Next we see him going to the new, small Lockhart home with flowers. At the table, he says he's sorry that his sister-in-law lost the baby. She says that they had a ceremony for it a month ago. He says he knows and is sorry that he didn't come. Well, i'm glad he is not making excuses for not coming, but sorry gets old too. So, they're hurt that he has been away from them, but Mary Kate doesn't seem half as torn up about him as she as when stupid Allison left the family last year and she had a little betrayed outburst about it.

Cole starts reading from Noah's book and I'm not sure why. I don't think he wants the family to unite in anger over Noah. I mean you want to be with people who feel the same emotionally as you do, but his attitude is not like he needs support. It's more like he wants to goad them, but goad them into doing what? Scott and Cherry say it's just a book and I wonder if maybe they sold the rights to their family to the publisher and that's why they are not objecting. The book says they are lowlifes but they inherited it from their grandfather who earned his money by cheating others and baby killing. Cole thinks they should sue or something. Hodges stole their land, not the other way around, but there's silence and he asks why Scott and Cherry keep looking at each other. Cherry says it's true. That old grandpa hated Hodges (is that Oscar's family?) because he had an affair with his wife and she got pregnant by him and when he found out, he killed the baby and stole Hodges' land. And that's why the family is cursed. Gabriel dies and Mary Kate lost her baby and they can never have children. Well, they had children in S1. When we saw the first family dinner there were kids there and looking at them caused Allison to get all mopey -- as everything does. Now, suddenly they're a barren family. And it's stupid, because this show is not about the Lockharts and I was glad to go 6 episodes without seeing them. This is not Dallas where the Ewings and the Barnes are at the heart of the plots. It's one thing to give characters a family but giving Cole such a BIG one is a real drain. It would be better if he just had one brother or something. Three brothers is a bit much and I don't want to see Cole's scenes burdened with them. Scott gets a phone call and texts back. Cole is disgusted. Scott is still doing drugs and I know he's dying soon, but not soon enough. I don't want to hear anymore about the drug running.

The family wants Cole to come back and Cherry says she's worried about him. She says the last time she saw someone drink as much as Cole has been doing the man hung himself. I think she means old grandpa. Cole leaves and Scott catches him outside and again asks him about the house. He heard Allison sold it. I wonder if Cole is going to get any of the money and where he will live when it's gone. Whitney pulls up in a taxi. What! Cole can't believe that Scott is still seeing her. Scott asks how Whitney new where he was. She says he just texted her 10 minutes ago. He says, "that was you??" So, he apparently hadn't been trying to meet up with her. He rejects her and Cole asks where she is supposed to be. She says no where. He says he better give her a ride. She is in the taxi with him.

She is crying about Scott. She says that she loves him and he cares about her too. He says, "that's not the way it works. Just because you love someone doesn't mean they love you back." I think this line really hits home the way Josh delivers it and I think it's more quietly effective than his tears were last season. Whitney says that the last time he saw her, he shot at her. What? Cole raises a brow, but takes the accusation in stride. He says he thought he was aiming at her dad. But he's truly sorry she had to witness that, either way.

Whitney says he's in her father's book. He says he knows, but doesn't blast her dad in front of her, which shows he is a gentleman at heart. She says she's not in her father's book at all and she thinks it means he doesn't care about her. He says that maybe her father didn't want to expose her to the publicity. Gracious Cole.

He says his father hung himself when he was 10 (aha!) and he thought it meant his father didn't love him and he realized that's not what it meant. It had nothing to do with him. She is shocked at the revelation and it must make her realize that her problems are nothing compared to those who have really suffered loss. He shows up at NOah's door. She must have asked him to take her there. She stopped punishing her father with her absence because of Cole.

They ring Noah's bell (which he answered during the 1st half) and he is shocked to see them. I tense waiting for him to blame Cole angrily, but Cole just says that she was out chasing Scott and he thought he ought to bring him home. Noah appreciates it and doesn't seem to think that he needs to be concerned about having his child in Cole's custody, even though Cole supposedly shot at them. He asks Cole if he wants to come in for a drink. Cole says "no" and I am relieved. I wish he'd said "no" to Allison when she asked him to keep her company in bed. I suppose that was a humorous moment for other viewers. But I am too protective of Cole to get much pleasure out of his scenes with NOah or Allison.

Noah shows up at Luisa's door with drinks. She buzzed him in, but is sullen. Cole is at Josh's most charming. He says that it's been a long time since he had any one to care about and that's why he tried to push her away. "I was trying to hurt you. I wanted you out of my house and as soon as you walked out that door, I wanted you back." He says he promises never to hurt her like that again if she gives him another chance. He says he may not be much, but he is a man of his word and anyone will tell her that he is. She softens and tells him to come in. And one more thing, "Te amo, tambien." Swoon.

He goes in and chats with those assembled inside, eating, smiling. A contrast from the stark dinner at NOah's and the angry one at the Lockhart's, for sure.

IN the present, the defense lawyers are looking at video Oscar gave them. It's Allison on a porch with Scott. She pulls away from him angrily and the police observe she doesn't seem to be on good terms with him like she claimed. They wish they knew what they were saying. Oscar says he was nearby (isn't he always) and he heard what they were saying loud and clear. Scott is saying, "that's our baby. That's OUR baby." Oscar says you can read his lips and see that's what he said as plain as day.

Online some wrote that they thought this meant Allison slept with Scott. That never occurred to me and Treem better not suggest it. It just means that Scott is saying that the baby is a Lockhart. Cherry made a big deal about then not having kids because the family is cursed and Scott is saying that child is their family's. Plain and simple. I hope Treem didn't mean to imply anything different, even as just a red herring.

My question is, if Scott did the math and suspects, then why doesn't Cole. when he saw Allison at the courthouse he just said to her, "is this your baby?" Did he have a conversation with her before where she gave him some excuse about it not possibly being his? I'm upset that she would take the chance for Cole to be a father again away from him, after he lost Gabriel, but that wouldn't be the first time she'd been heartless.

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