It’s Malika’s birthday and tensions between people who live at The Coterie and their partners nearly throw off the vibe she was aiming for.

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It’s Malika’s birthday and tensions between people who live at The Coterie and their partners nearly throw off the vibe she was aiming for.

Director(s) Chandra Wilson
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson, Ashly Perez
Air Date 7/23/2019

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Love Is In The Air: Malika, Isaac, Davia, Dennis

While there is a whole lot of drama and tough conversations going on, luckily for Malika she isn’t in the middle of none of it. Well, she does stir up some of it with her birthday invitations which, for some, seem like call outs. Yet, when it comes to her and Isaac, who attends her birthday celebration, they’re cool.

As for Davia and Dennis? It seems we’ll still have a while before something happens with them. If only due to them both being coy and skating around how they truly feel. That is even with Davia revealing Dennis didn’t have sex with her mom, and more so, her mom was trying to trick Dennis into having sex. You know, because she is a horrible person.

But, start the countdown clock for they drop a lot of hints that something should/ has to happen by the season finale. They clearly see each other as more than friends.

I Just Want You More Confident: Joey, Alice, Raj, Mariana, Gael, Elijah

Starting from who has a minor issue to the ones with bigger problems, once again, Gael is pushed to use his IG to push his sexy. A task Bryan failed at yet Elijah succeeds in. Heck, he even gets Gael to cut some of his hair down – leaving him with some very boyish curls.

As for the other couples on the show? Well, let’s just say insecurities are plaguing them. When it comes to Raj, despite all the work he has put into winning over Mariana as a friend, now girlfriend, he finds Evan contacting her unnerving. Though, let’s be real, if someone texted your girl about DTF, you might question things a bit as well.

Alice feeling that Joey wants her more femme.

Though it could be part of a bigger issue. One that Alice also deals with and that’s just confidence. Not just in terms of what they bring to the relationship but also when it comes to their sexuality. For as Joey notes, Alice plays down not feeling sexy by joking about her looks and ruining the mood. And granted, Alice and Joey do have some issues since Alice is new to dating and Joey being non-binary requires adjusting. Especially since she is wearing a binder now, so that means Alice has to look for other ways to pleasure her.

But, when it comes to Alice and Raj, it seems they are committed to bringing sexy back into their relationships. Maybe not immediately, right now they are just speaking their intentions, but give them time.

Sisters Fight Sometimes: Mariana, Raj, Jamie, Callie

I should note, on top of the Evan thing, Mariana also has to deal with Callie mouthing off about the Evan sex dreams and them moving to The Coterie because of Mariana’s former crush on Gael. Yeah, Callie gets messy this episode. But, in her defense, Mariana keeps bringing up they are family and seems to forget Callie is petty and destructive. So her coming for Callie in front of every one about her finances and failing the bar, she was asking for it.

But, in the long run, the fighting may have been to Jamie’s benefit. It has pushed the idea of Callie moving in with him, which he likes, plus it also has made him being a Republican less of an issue. If not one Callie might be more open to deal with since it is clear she needs space. Which isn’t to disregard Jamie saying he is open to opinions about his politics, and policy in general. However, with him often having to chase Callie, Jamie finally having something which gives him some purpose, outside of being an alternative, could help things.

Question(s) Left Unanswered



Commentary on Asian Americans & Feeling Sexy

It shouldn’t be lost on us that both of the Asian characters on this show had issues with their confidence and feeling sexy enough for their partners. Though it isn’t mentioned specifically on the program, there has been a bit of a legacy, more so for Asian men than women, of playing the nerdy, comical best friend vs. the guy who gets the girl. Then, for Asian women, if they don’t fit that stereotypical thin look, again there is that othering or desexualization going on. So to see both confronted, nodding to the stereotype but not bringing it up, was an awesome thing. Especially considering Good Trouble can often be on the nose when it comes to bringing up why this or that was put in the script vs. things just happening naturally.

The Conversations Between Joey & Alice

Alice and Joey are the most communicative couple on this show, and I love it. Particularly due to their conversations being a mix of very specific topics that only apply to them yet can be expanded to be something general. Take Joey binding themselves to feel more comfortable. That can be seen as a very specific issue when dealing with someone who veers towards presenting as masculine but is non-binary. Yet, expanding on the subject, you can generalize it in the form of trying to learn how your partner likes to be touched being an awkward experience when you first start getting intimate.

Alice and Joey talking about Joey's chest binder.

Making it so the show can have it where non-binary people feel seen, yet it doesn’t appear so hype focused that those who are cis, identify with a specific gender, or aren’t queer, can’t connect to what’s happening.

Davia and Dennis

They’re growing on me. Admittedly I still like the idea more of Dennis playing the big brother figure to everyone, vs. being in a relationship with yet another younger woman, but you know how shows like this are. It’s easier to put two people in a relationship, story, and cast quantity-wise, than have them be individuals with their own lives, pursuits of happiness, and what have you. So while I’m still slowly treading into shipping them, I get this is better than stretching the show thin by having an abundance of characters to manage.

Callie & Mariana Calling Each Other Out

Let’s be honest, the fact Callie and Mariana don’t fight more is strange. Especially since they don’t have the same amount of distractions as when they were back home to keep them separated. Take note: Both of these young ladies are sensitive, and with Callie having a sharp tongue, ready to burn a bridge in a second, the fact she hasn’t said half of the remarks she did this episode earlier is a HUGE surprise.

But, it does remind you that Callie is lowkey trash. Granted, we can attribute her upbringing as one of the reasons she lashes out like she does, but how long can we use a bad childhood for someone’s actions? Not to seem callous but come on?

Dennis & Malika Connecting

Dennis letting Malika know he'll tell her what is going on soon.

With characters often paired up and then barely talking to one another, it was nice for someone, besides Davia, to speak to Dennis. Malika especially since she has been set up to damn near be third highest on the call sheet. Almost the kind of character you can see get a minor spin-off. So with the reminder of how long she has been at The Coterie and that she has relationships with characters beyond Callie, Alice, Isaac, and Dom, one can only hope we may see more interaction between members of the communal facility.

Low Point

We Need To Learn More About These Partners

Jamie, Isaac, Elijah, Joey, and Raj remain the kind of characters who we get minuscule information about and don’t really know who they are outside of their relationships. Jamie less so, due to him being a carryover from The Fosters, but the rest are mysteries. For while, yes, we know they all work, and have seen all but Isaac in their element, in terms of meeting their families, a development of their communities, and things of that nature? Well, we don’t know a thing. Which makes them sometimes seem disposable despite how much they contribute to the growth of their girlfriends, and boyfriend in Elijah’s case.

On The Fence

We Got A Bit Political

Can I just say, while I get the characters are mostly queer or people of color, it would be kind of nice if Jamie wasn’t guilted for being a Republican? If just for the sake of not every show bagging on them. Which isn’t to imply we agree with Republican policies, it’s just there is such a us vs. them divide that one can only hope as much as Jamie is expected to keep an open mind, Callie will too. Just so that there are conversations when it comes to his politics and not just another reason for her to want to break up with him pronto.

Jamie noting he will try to keep a more open mind about politics.

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[ninja_tables id=”30904″]

We Got A Bit Political - 75%
We Need To Learn More About These Partners - 65%
Dennis & Malika Connecting - 85%
Callie & Mariana Calling Each Other Out - 80%
Davia and Dennis - 81%
The Conversations Between Joey & Alice - 90%
Commentary on Asian Americans & Feeling Sexy - 89%


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