The drama intensifies this week as Brandon and Madisson get more serious, Garrett and Juliette make Kelsey jealous and Pauly puts on the worst show The Beach Club has ever seen.
Buckle up, fam. Stuff just got real on “Siesta Key.”
I’ll begin by saying this episode was exactly what I needed. If I had to watch one more bad one-on-one date with Alex and Kelsey or some awkward gathering with random family members thrown in and passed off as if it were totally normal, I would have shoved my remote into my Irma sandbags.
Wow. Where do we even begin?
For starters, this week’s opening scene was killer. It’s hard for me to admit this was entertaining because it’s disappointing that all the girls on this show are so unsupportive of one another (except for maybe Madisson, who actually has a heart) but watching Kelsey and Juliette go at it was quality reality television. It’s refreshing seeing girls who aren’t afraid to speak their minds.
Although the scene is impressively brief, even by “Siesta Key” standards, things get heated quickly when Kelsey shows up at Juliette’s house to talk — and Juliette knows exactly what about. Kelsey gets angry because Juliette told Garrett she “hooked up with Alex” (the details of this situation are of course up to personal interpretation), and Juliette is quick to defend herself.
“I don’t owe you anything,” she tells her. “We’re not going to be friends, Kelsey, that’s just how this is going to work.”
Ouch. She has a point, though. Let’s be real, Juliette and Kelsey were never really friends. They were forced into a manufactured friendship for the sake of television, and Kelsey’s “girl code” excuse doesn’t really apply. Do I think it’s crappy that Juliette went after Garrett the second she realized Alex was into Kelsey? Of course. But at the same time, it’s Kelsey who screwed up her relationship with Garrett, and if it weren’t for her actions, she wouldn’t be in this situation with Juliette (who at least waited until Kelsey and Garrett had broken up).
The next scene is incredibly comical because it’s basically Gary Kompothecras’ attempt at an intervention with Pauly, and almost the whole time Alex looks like he’s about to burst out laughing. The best is when Gary says he hopes Pauly has learned something from getting arrested and Pauly responds with “I learned to make sure your car doesn’t have weed in it when you’re driving around.”
This reminds me how sad it is that this show tries to come off as “real” — I know Pauly was indeed charged with possession of marijuana, but I have a hard time believing that he would have had this talk if the cameras weren’t rolling. And if he had, Alex would have never been in the room. Pauly’s arrest has nothing to do with him.
In this scene we also hear the news we’ve been waiting all season for: Pauly (AKA Gary) booked a gig at The Beach Club, AKA “the biggest club on Siesta Key,” AKA the only true nightclub on Siesta Key, AKA the only one willing to let Pauly set foot near their stage. More on that later.
Next is another weird lunch date with Brandon and his mom, and I’m reminded within the first five seconds why I can’t take Brandon seriously because he addresses his mom as “mama mia.”
There’s nothing else notable about this scene other than that Brandon tells his mom she’ll approve of Madisson and then randomly brings up the fact that if they become official, they’ll be a rare interracial couple on Siesta Key. I understand why Brandon would find this notable, but I also find it somewhat aggravating that MTV would feel the need to make their differing skin colors a plot point.
It’s 2017, people. I promise I’m not trying to be a cliche millennial when I say this, but the fact that they’re two different races didn’t even cross my mind until they brought it up.
Next up we have an uncomfortable work encounter between Chloe and Kelsey during which Chloe holds nothing back and tells Kelsey she thinks Juliette wasn’t in the wrong with what she told Garrett, especially after Kelsey went for Alex when she knew Juliette and Alex were an item (throwback to when we believed that fling would last — oh wait, nobody ever believed that).
Speaking of uncomfortable encounters, it wouldn’t be “Siesta Key” without an intolerable hot tub/pool party.
I’m still not quite sure what the hell is happening on this double date with Madisson, Brandon, Kelsey and Alex, but I’m pretty sure that Alex is semi flirting with Madisson right in front of Kelsey, and then he decides to play hard to get by refusing Kelsey’s kiss even though he says they’re “just getting started.” *Shudders from the memory of this trainwreck of a scene.*
Surprisingly I find myself a fan of the following scene, which is apparently a small birthday party for Juliette that nobody from the show was invited to except for Garrett. They get uber friendly and he asks her out on an odd shared birthday dinner date because his birthday is coming up right after hers. She says yes, and no doubt starts to envision the personal fitness empire that the two of them could create.
Editor’s Note: The sexual innuendos in this episode are unreal. In the pool party scene the guys laugh as they ask Kelsey if she wants just one sausage, and then in the next scene Garrett asks Juliette to “ride” with him in the kayak. You don’t ride a kayak, dude. You paddle it. Try being more subtle with your sexual advances.
Perhaps the best image in this episode is the look on Chloe’s face when Pauly and Alex roll up to the tiki bar to invite her to Pauly’s rap performance. Before getting in a brief fight, Alex tries to break the ice with a “Nice breeze today.” Chloe starts to respond and Alex just says “I mean not really, but nice to see you,” in the most condescending tone I’ve heard him use in a long time.
Needless to say, the conversation doesn’t go well, but Chloe is a badass and says she has to work because she’s not a “trust fund baby” while looking right at Alex. Pauly asks for a shot because it’s getting too intense for him and Chloe earns endless clap emojis when she spitefully hands him something so strong he twists his face in disgust.
Madisson and Brandon have a cute date in this episode, but again, the race topic gets brought up and the way Madisson responds is interesting. She says yes, he’s the first black guy she’s ever “talked” to (that’s millennial for “casually dating”), but shrugs it off as if it’s no big deal. Brandon tells her it was hard growing up on Siesta because some people didn’t think his family belonged there, then says the two of them would be the only interracial couple on the island (which I doubt is true). Madisson uses this as a chance to change the subject to a more pressing one — asking if they’re official. They are. Race plot point is over I guess?
Juliette and Garrett have a relatively boring dinner date during which they talk about this exes an unhealthy amount, and the most interesting moment is when Juliette brings up how people probably assume they’re dating as a form of revenge. Garrett says he’s “not like that” but his actions ten minutes later in the show prove otherwise.
Amanda makes a brief appearance for some girl talk with Juliette before Pauly’s show, and she asks her if she thinks Garrett will make a move.
“I mean I’ll go in if he doesn’t,” she responds.
I admire her confidence, I have to admit.
Anyway the episode culminates in perhaps the best closing scene of the season: Pauly’s big gig at The Beach Club.
Basically what happens is Garrett and Juliette make out right in front of Kelsey, Kelsey walks away and is comforted by Madisson, Pauly gets belligerently drunk and performs terribly (both because of his rap skills and because he’s so drunk he keeps turning off the mic by accident), Pauly storms offstage and goes to cry in his car, and Kelsey confronts Garrett about his actions.
It was a whirlwind. The best part though, was that Pauly pulled hot girls onstage before he stormed away as if to detract from the bomb of a performance that just took place.
How will they ever top this? We’ll see next week.
- Niki Kottmann