|Raise your paw if you think this season is Rocking?|
|Sensitive artist Kaylie contemplates hacking off her ear.|
And that new coach is former Silver Medal Olympian Darby - whom we will call Darbs with a squeal, and she will jump up and down, grin with more teeth than I've ever seen, and lead us in pagan rituals. An ebullient mix of Eastern philosophy, Plastic Ono Band, and Black Panther, Darbs leads by trust and friendship, rather than such passé things like 'rules' and 'routine.' After all, oppression encourages rebellion. If there's nothing to rebel against, these rogues will just shrug and come in to the gym, won't they?
Payson is not convinced. Nor is Emily, and we are treated to probably the greatest string of reaction shots ever as the two of them take in Lauren's professing to be team coach, now that Kaylie is out of the picture. Pay, fueled by her mother's tradition of serving fresh fruit in clear bowls on her kitchen island, pipes up to say that she should be team captain, not Lauren. She goes on to say if Sasha were there, they would have a competition to decide. Darbs puts the idea to a vote, and the Mini Meet is on! But first, new coach Darby does a solid for every male watcher in the audience that had to sit through Big Hunks last week and does a routine on the bars in a spectacularly complimentary black leo. She also earns some begrudging respect from Payson. Turns out the new coach actually has chops.
Kaylie has a big show to put on herself for the rehab goddess. She has been properly briefed on which buzz words to say and how to say them, and, pulling the wool over this expert's eyes and her parents, she is free to go home. Elated, she is already picking out her outfit for Worlds when she is told that she cannot start training. Free but not free, she is encouraged to pick up another interest like singing. "I hate singing," she says, and we get another fantastic reaction shot from her mother, former pop star Ronnie. By the way, am I the only one dying to hear any of Ronnie's recordings? Is there a Ronnie and Damon duet in the cards?
|I hope she likes juice as much as I do? Or, Damon comes back from LA a juice addict.|
Love is in the air everywhere, and we check in with Lauren's father Steve, who, I kid you not, says to Summer, "before I destroyed your faith in me, we had something special. Didn't we?" What a smooth talker! Or maybe it's that see-through red wine he's serving. Should have let that bottle ferment a little longer, Steve. Summer swoons, though, but shes got a caveat: Steve can keep nothing from her ever again. No lies, no nothing. This suits the changed Steve, who's got an announcement to make,and by simply calling over his shoulder, his mighty voice echoes through the entire house, interrupting the slumber party Lauren and Darby are having. Seems Darbs and LoLo were BFFs years ago at NGO camp, and now Darby is staying with the Tanners, looking gorgeous in her jammies while Lauren reads BM magazine. Seriously? Did she swipe that from Kaylie's rehab? Does that girl have no morals whatsoever? Apparently not, as she plants more seeds of rumor about Payson and Sasha in Darby's willing ears. But Lauren plods down the hall to get the news that it's official - Steve and Summer are back together. Which instantly means to Lauren that they are getting married and she has a mommy now! Maybe it was just me, but it kind of looked like Summer was still thinking about being all over Sasha in that tight office at The Rock.
|I think they're finally gonna do it! LET'S GET READY TO TUMBLE!!|
|The pains of being pure at heart.|
Speaking of eating, Mrs. Cruz is thrilled to distract her daughter from her illness by opening up the secret vault in this enormous mansion they live in so that Kaylie has a room to work on art. Little did we know the gold record hanging in the living room was just one piece of memorabilia in the Ronnie empire; Casa de Cruz has an entire recording studio in the west wing, overflowing with magazine covers, awards, more gold records, and a larger-than-life size standee of a younger, bigger haired Ronnie, taken in the olden days before red eye reduction was freely available. With a twinge of regret, Ronnie goes to get a single cardboard box to pack up just the things that are in the way, but Kaylie has already started by tossing - I think it may be an Telly trophy or some carved ice - into the framed "Legs Only" gold record on the wall. Seems Kaylie is trying to make a point to her dad - she's healthy! She's well! She needs to train! She's an athlete! Only Dad can understand that! I'm beginning to see how Lauren and Kaylie got to be such close friends. Come back, sweet Kaylie from seasons past, we miss you. Here's hoping you actually get some recovery because you are getting less healthy by the minute.
|Whatevs...Daddy's little girl.|
We close out on Kaylie's continued descent into the dark side, as her evil roommate from rehab eggs her on to grab a little Damon action. Emily has confided in Kaylie that Damon is back in town over some Spruce Juice, and he has given so much of himself to Emily, and she has given him nothing in return. Kaylie has the perfect idea - why not give him Mom's recording studio? That way he can finish his record in Boulder and I can get my fantasy Damon / Ronnie single! Or wait - is Kaylie going to be singing with Damon? I know I should be happy for Emily and Damon, but when Emily shows up at his well-appointed hipster apartment to say she is signing the contract and swearing off boys until the NGO says she can date again, I felt a foreboding. She's not going to sign the contract until she gives Damon her most special prize. Fade to black as Damon gets his wish from the shooting star.
Oh, Emily. Has Lauren taught you nothing? Has your mother? Is this going to end well for Damon and Emily? Will Kaylie move her exercise walker into the recording studio? Will Steve do what is right? Is Darby's loosey goosey coaching style actually going to work? Who coaches the inner goddesses of the boys, anyway? We're just getting started this season and things are already churning up, MIOBI-style. Can't wait for more. Namaste!