Good Trouble: Season 1, Episode 10 “Re-Birthday” – Recap, Review (with Spoilers)

Davia during her birthday party.
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What begins as a fun night out, with 0 focus on work, leads to a lot of people addressing current relationships, boundaries, and self-respect.


Episode Information: Episode 10 “Re-Birthday”

Network
FreeForm
Director(s) Aprill Winney
Writer(s) Claudia Forestieri, Dan Richter
Air Date 3/12/2019
Introduced This Episode
Brandon David Lambert

Recap

Communication Issues: Isaac, Malika, Brandon, Dennis, Jamie, Callie, Gael, Bryan

It’s Davia’s birthday and she makes it so everyone has to bring a plus one for a series of games to be held throughout the night. Unfortunately though, for many, the games don’t create a lot of opportunities for fun as much as they do for drama. Case in point, the Callie x Gael drama heats up as Gael brings Bryan and Callie brings Jamie. Which for Callie isn’t much of an issue but with Gael? Well, he is still reeling from feeling used and tossed aside. Making the night just uncomfortable for him.

However, it isn’t even really Callie and Jamie who make it hard, it is Bryan. He decides to kiss Callie, during a game where kissing people get you points and later on there is a conversation with Gael about the state of his relationships with Callie and Bryan. For Bryan, there are clear insecurities since Callie is still around, is close to Gael, and Bryan feels like a second choice. Add in he still seems a bit uncomfortable with Gael’s bi-sexuality, and while they will continue to be together, it is going to be rough.

As for Callie? Well, for those who have watched The Fosters, you know how she does things. It begins hot and heavy, she backs off, asks to be friends, and then she wants what she feels she is losing to another. But with Jamie in the picture, maybe that won’t be the case? Especially since they share something she and Gael currently don’t – Brandon.

Brandon driving about for a Lyft-like service.

Someone who is having his own communication issues since he is broke and seemingly living off his wife’s money and is uncomfortable with that. Making it seem, for all that was said before and after the wedding, nothing has changed. Brandon’s fears have come true, and he has become a kept man. Yet, Dennis, who is dealing with his divorce, reminds him that is the shoe was on the other foot, he’d probably wouldn’t have issues with his wife spending their money, especially if to better herself. Something Callie co-signs by reminding Brandon that he has to learn to adapt to not always being the caretaker.

Leaving one last relationship: Isaac and Malika. Though they have been seeing each other for a while now, it seems all he has really gotten to know is the curves of her body. So, taking advantage of Malika’s competitive nature, he decides to use Davia’s birthday challenge to earn some questions. Of which leads to him learning Malika doesn’t know much, if anything, about her dad, her mom has substance abuse problems, and she would like to be closer to her dad, but can’t be.

Boundary Issues: Sumi, Mariana, Raj, Alice

Sumi and Mariana seem to have a big issue on knowing where the line is between being friendly and flirting. With Sumi, it is in the form of acting she isn’t engaged to be married and reminiscing, a bit too much for Alice’s taste, about them when they were together. Oh, and kissing Alice as well.

Raj and Mariana posing with a disco ball they stole.

As for Mariana? Well, her plus one for Davia’s party is Raj, and while she is trying to convey friendship, with her accepting their office ship name, flirting with the idea of kissing Raj for points, following Sumi kissing Alice, things are awkward. But, while Mariana may have left Raj confused, with Alice trying to get a second date with Joey, she notes there is nothing between her and Sumi. Also, her freaking out was because she hasn’t come out yet.

It’s My Party & I’ll Cry If I Want To: Davia, Dennis, Jeff

With Davia turning 25 is supposed to mean a turning point in her life. However, she ends up spending most of the night waiting on Jeff to say something. Thing is, after Dennis punched him and told him to stay out of Davia’s life if he can’t be serious, he took the warning and stayed away. But with Davia texting him she learns the truth and gets all up in Dennis’ face. Leading to, as usual, her criticizing the man she barely knows and later on ending up in bed with Jeff. The one thing Dennis was trying to protect her from for, as he did with Brandon, he tried to protect Davia from herself.

Question(s) Left Unanswered

  1. Is Malika the only one keeping in touch with her date from a couple of episodes back?

Review

Highlights

Big Brother Dennis

Dennis explaining why he sent Jeff away with a punch.
Dennis: I told him you’re trying to learn to love and respect yourself.

Slowly but surely we are starting to understand the family dynamic of The Coterie. Alice is the maternal figure, Malika is the middle child sister, Davia is the baby of the family and Dennis the oldest brother. The one who picks on you and is an ass to you, but if someone else tries to be that way he is all up in their face. Not because he claims some sort of ownership over you but because he seems his jabs as toughening you up and other people messing with you physically or emotionally as harming you. Making it so he has to act.

The only question is, when it comes to his divorce, will that lead to his past and demons coming up? Much less, since Davia seems to be his scene partner more often than not, how will she react and will she put his life history on blast?

Malika & Isaac

When I tell you Malika and Isaac had late 90s, early 00s Black romance vibes! Oh my god, I could watch them two on a date for a whole episode, series, etc. For there is just something about those two and their vibe that is irresistible. Maybe it is because she is being coy, trying not to get hurt, and he is proving he can be trusted? Perhaps it is the fact she isn’t some light skinned girl getting this kind of treatment that makes this feel like something to keep a keen focus on? Either way, I need more out of this relationship.

On The Fence

The Same Old Patterns

Brandon still has the need to be a provider and Callie is in that constant ebb and flow of pushing people away but drawing them back in before they nearly exit their life. The familiarity of how they operate is nice, but with time jumps and more, you almost want to see them grow a bit. Especially since both have their pattern called out in The Fosters and again in this episode.

Mariana Learning It’s Not Just The Guys

While it is undeniable that Mariana is experiencing sexism, maybe racism since there aren’t a huge amount of Latinx folks at her job either, a growing issue might be how flirtatious she is. I’m not saying it is her fault if Raj gets mixed signals, but with her acknowledging how weird things are, and as she wins other guys over at work, this might become an issue. One which should be interesting to see how the writers handle.


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Season/ EpisodeSynopsisDirector, Writer, and Introduced ActorsTopics & Focused Characters
Season 2, Episode 4 "Unfiltered"Despite Callie starting a new job, old habits die hard. Also, Davia’s mom, Bonnie, comes to town and reminds us of another reason Davia doesn’t want to go home.
Director(s) Laura Nisbet Peters
Writer(s) Resheida Brady
Air Date 7/9/2019
Introduced This Episode
Bonnie Reagan Pasternak
Gina Rachel Rosenbloom
Marcus Juan Antonio
Teresa Lisandra Tena
  • Pay The Cost To Be A Boss: Gina, Raj, Mariana, Evan
  • Pulling A Callie: Callie, Joseph, Isaac, Malika, Marcus, Teresa
  • Mommie Dearest: Davia, Dennis, Bonnie
Season 2, Episode 3 “Doble Quince”Jazmin decides to have a Doble Quince, and despite it being her party, nearly everyone else’s minds are on other things.
Director(s) Bradley Bredeweg
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson, Ashly Perez
Air Date 7/2/2019
  • A Lady Is Allowed Her Secrets: Malika, Dom, Isaac, Joseph
  • You Can’t Have A Relationship Without Honest Conversations: Joey, Alice, Raj, Mariana, Evan
  • Sometimes Progress Doesn’t Come Soon Enough: Gael, Elijah, Jazmin, Jamie, Callie
Season 2, Episode 1 “Percussions” [Season Premiere]The verdict of the Jamal Thompson case is delivered, Mariana deals with how her personal and professional life has changed, and Alice prepares her next chapter.
Director(s) Peter Paige
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson
Air Date 6/18/2019
Introduced This Episode
Jacob Carter Rush Adkins
  • The Struggle To Move Forward: Dennis, Jacob, Davia, Jeff
  • A Change Gon’ Come: Alice, Joey, Raj, Mariana, Evan
  • Was This The Battle Or Was It The War?:Sandra, Judge Wilson, Malika, Callie, Jamie, Gael
Season 2, Episode 2 "Torn"Drastic moves are made in order to go from surviving to being happy, thriving even, but they naturally come at a cost.
Director(s) Peter Paige
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson
Air Date 6/25/2019
Introduced This Episode
Naomi Denise Dowse
Elijah Denim Richards
Joseph Richard Brooks
  • Case Of The Ex: Davia, Jeff, Elijah, Gael, Callie
  • Moving Past The Pain: Joseph, Dom, Malika, Dennis, Davia
  • A Complicated Future: Callie, Mariana, Evan, Raj, Jamie, Judge Wilson, Naomi, Malika
Season 1, Episode 13 “Vitamin C”Callie facing the camera, after being unable to choose between Gael and Jamie.
Nearly everything comes to a head as Good Trouble ends its first season which thankfully will be followed up by season 2 in June.
Director(s) Joanna Johnson
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson
Air Date 4/2/2019
Introduced This Episode
Viv Riley Go
  • From Another’s Eyes: Viv, Davia, Malika, Dom, Sandra
  • The Truth Will Set You Free And Freedom Is A Dangerous Gift: Mariana, Angela, Josh, Evan, Callie, Sumi, Joey, Meera, Alice, Ben
  • Picking Up The Pieces: Raj, Mariana, Dom, Isaac, Malika, Callie, Jamie, Gael, Davia, Dennis, Alice, Trae, Malika, Jeff
Season 1, Episode 12 “Broken Arted”You may think the title of this episode, “Broken Arted” is about romance but what’ll break your heart is the loss of something, rather someone beyond love.
Director(s) Peter Paige
Writer(s) Megan Lynn, Wade Solomon
Air Date 3/26/2019
Introduced This Episode
Nathan Brandon Barash
  • True Intentions: Raj, Evan, Angela, Mariana, Josh, Malika, Casey
  • A Complicated Relationship: Gael, Bryan, Callie, Jamie, Jasmin, Sumi, Alice, Meera, Joey
  • Goodbye Big Brother?: Mariana, Dennis, Davia, Jeff, Nathan, Jenn
Season 1, Episode 11 “Less Than”Good Trouble dives into varying topics dealing with race from pay gaps, representation, privilege, and also how to be an ally this episode.
Director(s) Bradley Bredeweg
Writer(s) Kimberly Ndombe
Air Date 3/19/2019
  • She’s Still In Love: Alice, Sumi, Meera, Joey
  • In The Minority: Malika, Isaac, Sandra, Mariana, Casey, Evan, Davia, Josh, Angela
  • The Work Drama Continues: Kate, Judge Wilson, Callie, Jamie, Tate
Season 1, Episode 10 “Re-Birthday”What begins as a fun night out, with 0 focus on work, leads to a lot of people addressing current relationships, boundaries, and self-respect.
Director(s) Aprill Winney
Writer(s) Claudia Forestieri, Dan Richter
Air Date 3/12/2019
Introduced This Episode
Brandon David Lambert
  • Communication Issues: Isaac, Malika, Brandon, Dennis, Jamie, Callie, Gael, Bryan
  • Boundary Issues: Sumi, Mariana, Raj, Alice
  • It’s My Party & I’ll Cry If I Want To: Davia, Dennis, Jeff
Season 1, Episode 9 “Willful Blindness”On top of meeting Malika and Alice’s illustrious mothers, and Rebecca’s, someone says goodbye to Good Trouble.
Director(s) Kelli Williams
Writer(s) Lauren Moon
Air Date 3/5/2019
Introduced This Episode
Moe (Malika’s Mom) Karole Foreman
Diane TBD
Trea Lee Chen
Kate Dianne Doan
  • Life In The Closet: Trea, Alice, Joey, Sumi, Meera
  • Identity Issues: Callie, Bryan, Gael, Mariana, Rebecca, Diane, Judge Wilson, Kate
  • A New Kind Of Family: Moe, Dom, Malika, Mariana, Sandra
Season 1, Episode 8 “Byte Club”Rebecca’s past is revealed as she flirts with a future that includes Jesus and Mariana’s Byte Club begins and finds a vital ally of the male staff.
Director(s) Peter Paige
Writer(s) Nicole Paulhus
Air Date 2/26/2019
Introduced This Episode
Tate Zachary Gordon
Angela Heather Mazur
Josh Charlie Bodin
Jesus Noah Centineo
  • When or Where Did I Go Wrong?: Callie, Judge Wilson, Tate
  • Always Be Ready: Dennis, Jesus, Rebecca
  • No Woman Left Behind: Mariana, Casey, Callie, Raj, Rebecca, Angela, Josh, Alex, Ben
Season 1, Episode 7 "Swipe Right"“Swipe Right” is purely about establishing the beginning, possible end, of nearly every characters current or future relationship.
Director(s) Troian Bellisario
Writer(s) Ally Musika
Air Date 2/19/2019
Introduced This Episode
Paul Joe Burke
Isaac Sarunas J. Jackson
Joey Daisy Eagan
Eli Steven Krueger
Lara Alisa Allapach
  • Girls Just Wanna Have Fun: Paul, Isaac, Joey, Eli, Lara, Mariana, Malika, Davia, Alice, Sumi
  • I Can’t Give All, So I Have To Give Nothing: Callie, Gael
Season 1, Episode 6 "Imposter"While the truth helps Callie flourish, Mariana is getting sick and tired of being sick and tired. Also, Jazmin returns and clues us into how difficult her life is.
Director(s) Geoff Haley
Writer(s) Megan Lynn, Wade Solomon
Air Date 2/12/2019
Introduced This Episode
Jennifer Annie Little
  • The Truth Will Set You Free: Judge Wilson, Jamie, Callie, Dennis, Davia, Ben, Jennifer
  • What It’s Like To Be Me: Jazmin, Gael, Callie, Jamie
  • Fight Club: Alex, Raj, Mariana, Casey, Evan
Season 1, Episode 5 "Parental Guidance Suggested"Stef and Lena come to The Coterie and reveal what is going on in their lives, and shine a light on Dennis.
Director(s) Bradley Bredeweg
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson
Air Date 2/5/2019
Introduced This Episode
Dennis Josh Pence
Stef Teri Polo
Lena Sherri Saum
  • Moms Are Coming!: Callie, Gael, Mariana, Malika, Bryan, Davia, Stef, Lena
  • Introducing Dennis: Stef, Dennis
  • The Truth Sets You Free/ Someone Who Understands: Lena, Malika, Callie, Mariana, Gael, Bryan, Ben, Davia
Season 1, Episode 4 “Playing The Game”Mariana and Alice are given the opportunity to stand up for themselves, as Davia and Callie are tasked with a needed shift in an important relationship.
Director(s)Michael Medico
Writer(s)Cristian Martinez
Air Date1/29/2019
Introduced This Episode
LibbyJessica Tuck
JeffChris Sheffield
  • The Boy Back Home: Davia, Jeff, Mariana
  • You Got To Stand Up For Yourself: Mariana, Raj, Casey, Alice, Malika, Sumi, Alex
  • We All Have Our Secrets: Libby, Judge Wilson, Rebecca, Ben, Callie, Malika
Season 1, Episode 3 “Allies”Both Mariana and Callie continue to struggle with office politics as Malika’s activism puts her at odds with her family.
Director(s)Laura Nisbet Peters
Writer(s)Kris Q. Rehl
Air Date1/22/2019
Introduced This Episode
JamieBeau Mirchoff
SandraNicki Micheaux
EvanT.J. Linnard
RajDhruv Uday Singh
SamMax Cutler
JazminHailie Sahar
  • You Make Time For The Things, And People, You Think Are Important: Malika, Sandra, Dom
  • Slowing Down The Train Won’t Mean It Won’t Get To Its Destination: Mariana, Alex, Raj, Sam, Evan, Casey
  • Step Your Game Up: Jamie, Callie, Rebecca, Ben, Judge Wilson, Gael, Bryan, Davia

Season 1/ Episode 1 “DTLA”

Good Trouble is charged with messages of equality mixed in with the relationship (platonic and otherwise) drama fans of its predecessor are used to.

Creator Joanna Johnson, Bradley Bredweg, Peter Paige
Director(s) Jon M. Chu
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson, Bradley Bredweg, Peter Paige
Air Date 1/1/2019
Genre(s) Drama, Young Adult
Good If You Like Progressive TV Programming

Racial & Cultural Diversity

Your Usual 20 Something Drama with Random Sex Partners, Job Anxiety, and Unnecessarily Complicated Relationships

Isn’t For You If You Don’t Like Your TV Programs Being Political
Introduced This Episode
Mariana Cierra Ramirez
Callie Maia Mitchell
Judge Wilson Roger Bart
Casey Chloé Wepper
Rebecca Molly McCook
Ben Ken Kirby
Alice Sherry Cola
Malika Zuri Adele
Gael Tommy Martinez
Davia Emma Hunton

Season 1, Episode 2 “The Coterie”

We got a conversation on bi-sexuality, the backstory of multiple characters and work drama – aka what will probably be the usual from Good Trouble.

Director(s)Peter Paige
Writer(s)Joanna Johnson
Air Date1/15/2019
Introduced This Episode
JudeHayden Byerly
BryanMichael Galante
Dom (Malika’s Brother)J. Mallory McCree
SumiKara Wang
AlexDustin Ingram
  • Let’s Talk About Sex(uality): Jude, Callie, Gael, Bryan, Sumi, Alice
  • The Outsider: Mariana, Alex, Davia
  • I’m Trying Here: Malika, Dom, Callie, Rebecca, Mariana, Ben

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