This week's episode featured family drama, boyfriend-girlfriend fights and a whole lot of tears (shocker).
Hi, friends. Welcome back.
This week’s episode of the show we hate to love opens with a conversation between our resident lovebirds, Juliette and Alex. We learn that Juliette is borrowing a dress from Alex’s mom for the annual Kompo family Autism Gala (no, apparently they could not come up with a more creative name) because they’re the same size.
That reminds me. Let’s all pause for a moment of silent respect for the total babe that is Beth Kompothecras, aka the only Kompothecras regularly on this show who is worthy of any screen time.
You may lift your heads now, thank you for participating.
Anyway, the point of this opening conversation is for Alex to tell Juliette some juicy gossip. Actually, it’s not that juicy, it’s just that in Miami, Cara apparently told Alex that Chloe is “a lot to handle.”
OK. Is this sort of rude? Yes. But I’m not going to sit here and lie to you, dear readers, I have said that about people I’ve cared about before. I’ve always followed it up with “but she’s very sweet,” or something like that, but if I’m asked my opinion of someone, and I know their personality is a little too strong for some people’s taste, I’m going to be honest — but also it’s all in how you say it.
Anyway, of course this is going to come back to haunt Cara later in the episode because Juliette’s response — with sort of an evil smile — is “I can’t wait to tell her (Chloe).” MUAHAHAHA.
Here’s a quick recap of the next few scenes:
- Garrett shows Cara his man cave, aka where he gets his sweat on and tapes it to put it on Instagram and make girls all over America extremely happy. Cara asks him — while barely making eye contact — if he got any help from his parents to start his budding fitness empire, and he says no. She seems impressed for about five seconds.
- Enter Grandma Beverly, the true hero of this episode. We learn that she’s the keeper of Pauly’s trust fund money, so whenever she’s in town from North Carolina, he’s on his best behavior. We’ll see about that.
- Chloe, Canvas and Tawni meet up for a lunch that gets real really fast. Canvas shares that her mom, who moved to Australia without her when she was a teenager, is coming to visit. She tells the girls about her abandonment issues and about how she was molested as a child. Chloe and Canvas hug (and Tawni awkwardly half joins), they cry together and we all breathe a breath of fresh air for this genuine display of healthy female friendship.
- Pauly takes Grandma Bev to The Cottage for lunch (or the other way around, more likely) and after more talk about how he needs to cut back on partying and make a backup plan in case his rap career (inevitably) falls through, we see Pauly get genuinely upset talking about being an orphan. Kudos to MTV for not being afraid to show a man being emotional on screen.
- Quick snippets of various cast members preparing for the Egyptian-themed (cultural appropriation is apparently OK in MTV’s vision of 2019) gala cross the scene, and the most important thing that happens is Jared saying he’s in it “for the long game” with Kelsey. Good luck with that, Romeo.
- Everyone looks hot AF walking — in slow motion, of course — into the party with their beaus, but my favorite couple by far is Ben and Madisson, the only down-to-earth people in this friend group (though I have to admit it’s extremely unrealistic that Ben would fly in from Houston for every episode … hmm …).
- Speaking of LDRs, Kelsey introduces everyone to her long-distance boyfriend Jacob, and Chloe immediately notes that it looks like Jacob met his girlfriend's “beach buddy,” aka Jared. Ouch.
- Alex makes a nice speech about why this gala is important to him, but I have a hard time respecting it because MTV only bothers to show scenes mentioning his brother and sister who have autism once a season, and the reasoning seems to be to make Alex look like the good guy for once.
What happens next is stupid, but it still warrants more than a bullet point because *gasp* I”m going to stand up for Cara again.
Alex and Juliette tell Chloe — wow didn’t see this coming — what Cara said in Miami, and they make it sound worse than it was. They say Cara’s words were that she “can’t stand” Chloe, but really she said she’s “a lot to handle.” The former is way worse than the latter.
Naturally, Chloe freaks out and confronts Cara, causing a scene that eventually gets Cara (and thus her hot date Garrett) kicked out of the gala.
I’m going to switch sides for a sec and mention that mid-confrontation, Chloe says she’s continually “gone to bat for Cara,” and I agree. While the rest of the friend group often makes her feel like she isn’t welcome, Chloe is the only one inviting her around (except for her apparent new boyfriend Garrett)
Anyway, let’s fast-forward:
- Brandon makes the super dumb*** move of asking Madisson — in front of his girlfriend Camilla and Madisson's now-boyfriend Ben — if she’ll be in his next music video (lol that the song is called “Somber”) because it’s about the “rise and fall” of their relationship. I think I just threw up in my mouth.
- Feminist icon Ben says Madisson doesn’t need his permission to do anything and says he knows there won’t be any trouble, which seems to convince Madisson to say yes. Three seconds later, Camilla is sobbing on the staircase telling Brandon she’s (rightfully) upset, and Ben is across the party telling Madisson he (understandably) thinks it’s weird. Later Pauly tells Brandon on a bro date at JDub's Brewing Co. that he also thinks having Madisson in the video is weird and honestly it’s the only acceptable opinion Pauly has ever shared on this show.
- Speaking of Pauly, somewhere between all the drama he plays a beautiful song on the piano for everyone at the party as a grand gesture to show beloved Grandma Bev that he’s worthy of her money. He blows her a kiss at the end and she seems to fall for it.
The party is over, but the drama continues.
Canvas meets her mom at some unidentified rooftop bar and it, to put it simply, does not go well. Her mom seems to be in denial that she abandoned her daughter and Canvas is so mad at her, she recoils the second her mom tries to reach out and console her. All our hearts collectively sink for her.
Things don’t look up for Canvas later in the episode either, because when she tells Tawni she wants to put “energy into” their relationship, Tawni says they are just friends. They argue for a moment about Tawni leading her on, and they don’t seem to come to a strong agreement by the end, though Canvas hints that she doesn’t want to lose her as a friend after Tawni says the same.
Speaking of relationships on the rocks, Kelsey (sort of) tells Jacob about her beach shenanigans with Jared and cleverly leaves out the part where they kissed. She says Jared means nothing to her but Jacob (an intelligent man) doesn’t seem convinced.
When she drops him off at the airport, Jacob says it would be best if they “took some time” to themselves. No bueno.
The episode ends with a blow-out fight between Kelsey and Chloe. Borrowing from a classic tactic from “The Hills,” a pissed-off Kelsey shows up at Chloe’s (supposed) new place of work, a real estate office, and starts a fight about the comment Chloe made to Jacob at the gala.
The credits roll while they’re still yelling at each other and I’m (sadly — who am I? A monster, that’s who) here for it.
What will happen next?! Tune in next week — or just read our recap — to find out.