We have been waiting to see adult Van for a while now and she does not disappoint. Living above her VHS store, While You Were Streaming, we see how she starts her day by being kind and rewinding a Welcome to the Dollhouse VHS and returning tapes to their shelves in her store. Was that a copy of Alive I spied? Well, I definitely noticed the Saturday Night Fever VHS and while I’m not savvy enough to come up with a reason, this movie and song featured thought the episode, which is interesting because this episode also felt like they were making sure we understand that this is a 90’s centric show. Seriously, the 90’s references were practically being shoved down our throats. It is, however, really amusing to see two young men come into the store and be amazed that the VHS boxes actually, somehow, magically contain a movie within while a girl comes in with her copy of Party Girl, claiming it to be her new favorite movie. And then Tai enters the store. Is that joy or trepidation on Van’s face? Perhaps, a little bit of both.
Tai tells Van everything that has been happening and is surprised when Van, very rightly, becomes upset with her. “You don’t get to do this. You can’t come up here, drop your anvil on my life and then go all High Fidelity on me.” Lauren Ambrose is perfection as adult Van and I’m really looking forward to what will transpire with these two.
Back in the wilderness, Lottie is already planting her cult leader roots by leading a sort of meditative session with some of the girls. One can’t help but wonder if the people who are with Lottie are the ones who will fracture from the rest of the group, thus creating the two groups. Van, Misty, Crystal, Mari, Akilah and Travis are all doing some kind of spiritual thing. Tai has only joined because, “happy wife, happy life” and, later, we will see a really nice conversation between her and Akilah. Akilah has joined the circle because she views it similarly to the pre-game ritual she had. She would listen to Easy Lover, by Phil Collins (did she go to school with Ted Lasso?), wear specific socks and even though she knew it didn’t really mean anything, it made her feel more optimistic and secure. You know, like religion. The way this show consistently makes arguments for both sides of the religion or anti-religion mindset is always thoughtful and insightful to the characters, and it’s one of the things that I love about it. No one is right or wrong; they are all just trying to get thorough whatever life has given them. But hey, it’s still a wee bit unsettling when Lottie says, “Tuning into nature and to each other, ourselves; that connection is what’s going to protect us and we need to nurture it. Especially now. A new life is coming,’” and then all of the girls repeat, in unison, “A new life is coming.”
Unsurprisingly, Shauna is not into all of this. When she catches Lottie talking to her baby while she’s napping, she freaks out, and who can blame her? She is a pregnant teen who crash landed on a mountain, she has literally consumed her best friend, and now the unknown horrors and fears of labor are imminent.
Callie is still spending time with the Matt and there is an uncomfortable moment where she “sexually hustles him” and he freaks out, but successfully recovers. Unfortunately for him, when he goes to use the restroom, she checks his credit card receipt and, in an alarmingly fast fashion, finds his actual identity online. Last week, it was uncertain if Callie learning the Adam secret was a good move on Shauna’s part, and now it pays off: Callie says that her mom is having an affair with Randy. When she gets home, Callie tells her parents everything, and it’s amusing to see the two parenting styles of Shauna and Jeff. Ultimately, Shauna decides that Callie’s misdirection is a good plan and then a truly unbelievable side story of Shauna meeting up with Randy, the cops conveniently following her and then Matt actually picking up what looks like a used condom, but figures out there is lotion in there occurs. First of all, this was all executed like a bad Lifetime movie, and secondly, Randy is SO bad at doing anything illegal. You gotta wonder why Jeff trusted him with the blackmail in the first place. Kevin points out that Matt has been made as a cop and he says to himself, “She might be good, but I’m better.” This does not bode well for Callie.
Speaking of suspect characters, Walter and Misty are in the car, but she is annoyed by the song Staying Alive playing on the radio, so Walter suggests they play Two Truths and a Lie while looking for Lottie’s compound. Essentially, Walter tells Misty that – ”There’s only ever one rule, win, and now you know more about me.” If that didn’t just announce his ulterior motives, then I don’t know what to think because here’s the thing: if his lawsuit that made him a millionaire was in the news, why wouldn’t Misty have heard about it? But we also need to be moderately concerned about how Misty didn’t know anything about current day Lottie. It doesn’t appear as though Lottie is trying to hide, so why was she completely off of her radar? Who knows, but I can’t wait to see how mad Nat is when she sees Misty has joined the compound.
Let’s go back to the wilderness. Javi is refusing to speak to anyone, but finally tells Coach Ben (the one person who didn’t eat Jackie) that he had a friend while he was MIA and that friend told him not to come back. Lots of things could be at play here and I shall wait to see more of this particular storyline unfold until I form any solid opinions, but I am intrigued to see how Nat and Travis reconcile the fact that he blames her for Javi being “messed up”.
Misty and Crystal are solidifying their Bestie friendship by talking about people they would invite to a dinner party and it’s shocking to absolutely no one that Misty would invite Jack Kevorkian.* While out on their latrine duty, Crystal tells misty that her name is actually Kristen, but she has never corrected anyone because the fact that the girls on the team gave her the nickname of Crystal the Pistol made her feel included. This leads Misty to think that she, too, can talk about a secret she has held all in the name of wanting to feel included, but when Crystal calls her a psycho for being the reason they are all still stranded in the mountains, Misty turns into the psychopath we saw in the first season when she watched a rat die in her pool. Sure, it’s technically an accident that Crystal went over the cliff, but I’m sure she would have met an untimely demise some other way. Kudos to Misty for using the beat of Staying Alive to do CPR on a, clearly, deceased Crystal and this must be why she didn’t want to listen to it in Walter’s car.
Nat is on a mission to see what Lottie is hiding. She thinks that she has a smoking gun when she finds the financial and personal records of the people staying at Lottie’s compound, but they had all willingly handed over this information. Nat finally has the emotional breakdown she has been needing and this allows for Lottie to do some hypnosis with her. Nat blames Lottie for Travis’s death, but when Nat goes under hypnosis, she has flashbacks to an OD she suffered in the past and while dead, she sees the Yellowjackets still on the plane because they never survived the crash. She says that they weren’t alone out there. She felt it, and she says they brought it back. That’s what Travis meant when he said she was right. There was a darkness out there, it’s in them and they brought it back. As the shadow of the Antler Queen looms large, the past isn’t going to let this moment overshadow it. Nope, the wind has picked up at the exact same time that Shauna’s contractions start. As her and Tai try to make it back to the cabin, Lottie and Van listen and try to mentally locate their friends. It is suggested that this is how Tai finds her way back to the cabin. Or maybe she just knows her way around the forest: I suppose that all depends upon how you view the supernatural elements of the show. Either way, the time has come for a baby and am I the only one who found this particular needle drop a bit too on the nose?
So, how many episodes until we find out what happens to the baby?
-Parker Posey is everyone’s dream woman.
-A Kingpin quote? Really?
-Reddit has absolutely melted down over Shauna and Jeff using cinnamon raisin bread for sandwiches.
-Who didn’t want Eric Nies from The Grind at their dinner party in the 90’s?
Music in episode:
4 Non Blondes: What’s Up?
Necking: Big Mouth
Tropical Fuck Storm: Staying Alive
*For anyone unfamiliar with the name Jack Kevorkian, he was a pathologist who was especially infamous in the 90’s for being an outspoken proponent of the “right to die” and he, himself, assisted multiple people with physician assisted suicide. He would later be convicted of second degree murder, be denied parole multiple times while serving eight years and then succumb to Hepatitis C that he contracted during research he did on blood transfusions in the 60’s.
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