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”
Claudia Forestieri, Dan Richter
Introduced This Episode
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.
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.
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
Is Malika the only one keeping in touch with her date from a couple of episodes back?
Big Brother Dennis
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.