OK, just a quick and dirty one because I have gotten so far behind on this show.
OK so we start with Kaylie and Nick doing a photo shoot at the Rock for Seventeen magazine.
Oh wait, stop me if you’ve seen this before…
MJ the publicist continues to force Nick and Kaylie to do photo ops and such together because “it’s good PR.” I guess it gets that non-national champ Nick more exposure whilst dispelling those pesky rumors that he likes hitting the wood, and I ain’t talking about his high bar routine. So basically, being a Rock gymnast is like being a Disney star.
Nick and Kaylie spend the majority of the scene engaging in petty bickering, because apparently petty bickering = sexual tension. These writers and JK Rowling go to the same school or what? Meanwhile, Chloe Kmetko shows up in all her tacky glory to find that Emily has now earned an exalted parking spot in the Rock parking lot. Inside, Creepy Carter slurms on over, and Lauren tries to drum up drama by dropping hints about Kaylie and Nick’s nonexistent staged whatever-it-is. Sasha finally puts an end to this debacle by yelling at the photogs and publicists to GTFO, so the characters can continue to not actually practice at practice.
We are treated to a fantasy Payson beam routine, set against a dramatic dark backdrop with a spotlight upon her. What is it with this show and performing routines in really poor lighting? I get that it’s ~*dramatic*~ and all but you could break something, yo. Kind of like, you know, if you try to self-teach yourself and practice bar routines on the monkey bars and beam routines on a bridge–oh, wait. Back to reality (and I use that term very loosely), where Payson stands by the beam playing it like a piano while “visualizing” her beam routine.
Payson’s Mom worries that Payson is getting false hope. Ma Keeler and Sasha try to talk some sense into her, but it doesn’t take. In the viewing area, Chloe Kmetko prattles on to the other gym Moms, bragging about her parking spot and the fact that she’s one of them now. They’re all like, “Whatever, bitch” and pretty much ignore her. Back on the floor, MJ tells Kaylie that she and Nick have been invited out to L.A. where they will fly via private jet and walk the red carpet. Kaylie can also bring two friends with her. Seriously, guys? Seriously? I know this show operates in a universe with rules even less comprehensible than an episode of Lost, but you’re telling me that a couple of gymnasts with no Olympic or (as far as I know) international experience, one of whom isn’t even national champion, are big enough celebs to warrant photo shoots and star treatment in a non Olympic year?
Meanwhile, the Kaylie vs. Lauren feud still rages on. This is one for the ages, you guys, like Paris vs. Lindsay or Lauren (Conrad) vs. Heidi. Could use more bleach, booze, smack, and… well, we do have sleazy sex, so one out of four ain’t bad. So Kaylie invites Payson and Emily to L.A. with her in front of Lauren. Well, what do you know? Kaylie finally develops a backbone–albeit a rather passive-aggressive one, but it’s progress, right?
Next we are treated to a rather awkward scene in Sasha’s office, during which Summer talks to Sasha about Payson and tries (unsuccessfully) to preach her faith to him. Oh dear Lord. This is going to offend my godless liberal sensibilities, isn’t it? In the gym, Nick informs Payson that he was able to get her an appointment with the best back doctor around. Because it makes this show more interesting, I’ma pretend it’s this guy:
Now with 100% more jears!
Since we haven’t had much evil Lauren times yet, the show makes up for this deficit by two scenes almost back-to-back (in between is a scene between Payson and her Mom, but nothing much happens and thus not worth recapping). At practice, Lauren blackmails Nick into inviting her to L.A. as his plus one (seriously… don’t these kids ever actually practice?). Out in the parking lot after practice, Lauren spies Carter stuffing a body into the trunk of his car and reports him to the police. She’s identified the infamous serial killer nicknamed the Boulder Creeper! Now young women can rest easy.
Just kidding. Nothing that exciting happens, sadly. Lauren finds out Carter’s Dad kicked him out of the house for spending too much time watching reruns of Gymkata and whacking off, and now he’s homeless. Lauren, of course, is eager to jump in and play good stalker bitch samaritan. She invites Carter to crash at Casa Tanner, presumably in the attic, which conveniently has a single bed just sitting there and not covered with boxes and dust and shit. Jeez, Lauren, don’t you know better than to invite a serial killer into your home? When the Feds find you and Dear Old Dad with your throats slit, don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Now we cut to L.A. where we are treated to a montage of a vapid teenage girls cruising by famous landmarks in a convertible while insipid pop music plays. No, we didn’t accidentally wander into an episode of The Hills. I would never diss the Hills. That’s quality entertainment right there. Next we see the GPs lounging by a pool somewhere sipping drinks with little umbrellas in them and waxing poetic about a Lauren-free vacation. Can someone please explain how these virgins who can’t drive managed to secure cocktails? It’s not like any of them could play Hello Titty with the bartender, because that would require possession of titties. Maybe Regina George’s Mom served them, a hump day treat. I don’t even know.
Next we’re treated to the eagerly-awaited scene of the girls walking the red carpet. Emily meets up with Damon, and I’m seriously starting to wonder what kind of Hollywood party this is. They’re letting in all the riffraff, aren’t they? Emily slinks across the carpet all self-conscious like and when asked who she is, answers that she’s nobody. Can’t fault her for self awareness. But Payson gives her a stern talking to, reminding her that she’s a national team member, you guys. So Emily goes back and struts her stuff and proudly owns up to being a national team member, OMG. The paps and fans who showed up to see actual celebs continue to scratch their heads and wonder who the heck this bint is. Lauren makes her entrance a while later, to the chagrin of everyone else.
Back in Boulder, Chloe has embarked on an ill-fated journey through online dating. She signed up on a matchmaking site, where she naturally made up half her profile and posted a really old picture of herself. She has secured a date with someone who calls himself “Tan Man” and gee, guys, whoever could this be? I have no idea. Chloe meets “Tan Man” at a restaurant for their date–turns out Steve Tanner used a fake picture, too! Imagine that! Har Har. So these two get over their mortification and actually enjoy their evening. Steve offers to hook Chloe up with a new car (well, technically used but new to her) since she can’t be driving the hoopty to the Rock anymore, not now that she has her own parking space. Hmm, maybe I should try this online dating thing. I could use a new car.
Back at the swanky Hollywood bash, no one gets drunk and/or coked-up or flashes their vajayjay and therefore I am bored. Damon does catch some skinny guy with a bleached-blond combover scamming on Emily. Guys, I think we’ve moved beyond beer-flavored nipples at this point. Emily is one big walking pheromone. Damon and Emily get in an argument about Razor, but Emily figures there’s more to it than that. Turns out Damon’s big break was penning songs for some teenybopper girl group–so basically, the kind of artists whose music is featured prominently on this show. Fancying himself the next Eddie Vedder, Damon is totally like, compromising his vision. Emily talks some sense into him, and for once I actually agree with her. Dude, Max Martin is laughing all the way to the bank.
In other news, Payson and Nick make out, while Kaylie gets invited to an ~*exclusive*~ after party. At the party, Kaylie drinks champagne while some random guy passes her a joint. Finally, this debacle gets interesting! Sadly, however, Lauren kills my buzz by overhearing a bunch of paps gossiping about a private party full of athletes, booze, and drugs. Sounds like a good time to me! Lauren manages to beat the paps upstairs (supposedly she pressed all the buttons in their elevator before leaving and taking another one) and rescues Kaylie just in time. The two share a tearful heart-to-heart during which they make up and are total BFFs again–at least, until Lauren pulls her next nefarious stunt.
Back at home, Chloe shows Emily their bitchin’ new Kia, courtesy of Steve. As for Lauren, she checks up on Carter and I can’t even say she gets her Swimfan on, because she’s too pathetic to even be creepy anymore. Finally, Payson’s story staggers to an anticlimactic close when the back doctor (sadly, not Jack Shephard) agrees with the Boston doctors’ prognosis; Payson can never do gymnastics again. Payson and her ‘rents shed enough jears to make up for Jack’s absence. All mocking aside, though, I really do feel for Payson, who continues to be the character I like and root for in spite of all the absurdity surrounding her.
And that’s it for this ep, guys. I’ll try to get the next two up posthaste. Hope you enjoyed!