Nicholas meets Alex’s friends, who have a mixed reaction to him, and Matilda gets to check off one of the things on her pre-college lists.
|Directed By||Silas Howard|
|Written By||Catya McMullen|
|Introduced This Episode|
|Zane||Timothy Isaac Brundidge|
Feels Like The First Time: Zane, Drea, Luke, Matilda, Jeremy
Matilda gets to be invited to Luke’s party, and with that, Matilda continues to make her desires known, he makes it clear he likes her as a friend, but not beyond that. With that said, Matilda finds herself questioning if she was led on or if Luke was just being friendly due to her being autistic?
Either way, she feels heartbroken and a bit horny. So when she encounters Zane, one of Luke’s friends, who might live in a trailer outside of Luke’s home, the drunk, at this point, Matilda vents to him. Following that, she comes onto him and gets sexually aggressive with him. Which, originally, he isn’t into, but then his mind switches up to seeing this as an opportunity and so Matilda loses her virginity.
As this happens, Jeremy and Drea, who found themselves unable to join the party, are outside Luke’s front door, and Jeremy goes to kiss Drea. Something she doesn’t like, at the moment, but she lets him do a proper one. However, whether or not she and Jeremy could become a thing is hard to say. Though, as of this episode, it seems Drea isn’t committed.
What Did You Do?: Tallulah, Genevieve, Zane
With Tallulah in a constant struggle to impress Genevieve, to the point of insulting her, learning that Matilda had sex with Zane while drunk is all she needs. For in this, joining Genevieve in her anger, they get to share something. Tallulah can make something about herself, and pretend it is about Matilda, and finally get Genevieve’s time and attention!
But all that happens really is Zane gets embarrassed by two kids he barely knows, and Tallulah makes him out to be a pervert. Well, and hearing what Zane did to Matilda gets Luke’s attention. This ultimately leads to Nicholas getting a phone call.
It’s So Hard To Be Liked: Alex, Nicholas, Rosie, Connie, Lyndsey
Because things are getting a bit serious, Alex has Nicholas meet his eccentric friends Lyndsey, Connie, and Rosie. Three people who, at first like Nicholas, until they learn he lied about knowing Lyndsey’s brother died of an opioid overdose. But with them realizing he lied because Alex wasn’t sure if he should have told Nicholas about Lyndsey’s brother, he recovers. For between that and Rosie doing him up as a drag queen, and his performance, Nicholas is shown to be more than a bit socially awkward. He is someone just right for the lovable Alex.
Being Reminded Alex Has A Life Outside Of Nicholas
With Alex seemingly living in Nicholas home, dealing with his sisters, and us not seeing him in scenes without Nicholas, one could submit the character has been outright consumed. So, with his friends appearing, and Nicholas on the defense, it was a nice change of pace. Especially since Alex’s friends weren’t portrayed simply as Alex’s friends. Rosie was a drag queen, Connie, very much eccentric, and Lyndsey had her brother and a whole life. These weren’t just people dreamed up and now in Nicholas’ home. They are written to be individuals who, when they leave that house, have so much to deal with beyond what happened that evening, and it further shows how good the writing is.
Matilda Addressing Struggles We Don’t See Since Most Portrayals Of Autistic People Are Men
You know, until this show I didn’t really realize when it comes to portraying people with autism, it has mostly been men. For, similar to depictions of what it is like to be queer or a person of color, it seems everything is rooted in the male experience. They are the ones who represent the plights of their group, and you don’t get to see the intersectionality which comes from not just being queer, a person of color, or someone who is autistic, but also a woman.
I mean, taking note of Matilda, the way her autism is pushed when it comes to her having sex with Zane, Tallulah makes it seem that her being taken advantage of wasn’t just in the form of her being drunk, or at the very least tipsy, and heartbroken, but also her being autistic. As if that should be considered a factor and Matilda, who was the aggressor, wasn’t fully aware, conscious, and able to give consent.
Which isn’t to say the clearly sober Zane shouldn’t have maintained saying no, considering the state Matilda was in. However, with us seeing the moment, compared to Genevieve, who is being retold what happened, and Tallulah manipulating it for her own use, it brings a different side to the conversation. One that we kind of see in “The Good Doctor,” when it comes to Carly and Shaun’s relationship, but this is a whole different take.
Mainly in the form of what it means to be a woman with autism who wants a relationship, wants sex, and is seeking to do what atypical kids do with ease. Hence her asking whether she was pretty and things like that. Matilda recognizes that, externally, she looks like any other girl but because of a single label, so much is dangled in front of her and made to be much harder than it should. And no matter how much she works for it, and pushes through how uncomfortable something may make her, she can’t get the specific thing she wants. Instead, she has to settle – as she did with Zane.
Then when you add Drea, you get a whole different take and being that she is clearly at a different point of the spectrum, you get less of this singular viewpoint and things expand. Making it so, unlike “Everything’s Gonna Be Okay’s” peers, you get a sense of diversity beyond the inclusion of one, but a true array of what a specific community experiences.
Tallulah and Genevieve’s Relationship
While I may always have mixed feelings about Tallulah, let’s not pretend that there isn’t clearly something more there. For, in my mind, Tallulah sees Genevieve is awkwardly comfortable with who she is, and who her friends are, and Tallulah is not. Something is crawling in Tallulah’s mind and under her skin which gives her the need to push boundaries and say weird things. But why?
That is the question, and with Genevieve being the one who makes it clear Tallulah isn’t someone to be in awe of, it should be interesting to see how their relationship develops. Specifically what Genevieve sees when she enters Tallulah’s world vs. when Tallulah enters hers or they are in a shared space like school.
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