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S06.E07: These Are The Times We Live In 2014.11.06

 

Re: Zeke telling Joel to fight for his marriage, shouldn't he be on Julia's side? Maybe she wants the divorce, and he should find that out first?

I don't think it's about a side. Getting them back together is what he thinks is best for both of them. Also, both sides screwed up. Their really isn't a side to take. And Joel didn't do anything terrible to blow up the marriage. He just didn't fight for it like he should of. So, that's what Zeke is telling him to do.

 

I guess Sarah will be next on Zeke's bucket list.

 

In regards to Zeke/Drew. Zeke is always the abrasive man but I cut him some slack right now. The man seems to be in rush to solve what it can and spend time with his family before dies. The whole health issue has been an eye opening thing for him. He doesn't mean any harm. He doesn't know how much time he has left.

Edited by Racj82.
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How many episodes are left?  I hope next week's previews with Amber's pregnancy emergency is another red herring like Crosby's motorcycle accident.  As dramatic and heart wrenching as it may be, I do not want to see Amber or her baby be the death we are all expecting.

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Maybe the death will be Camille.  Since we didn't see her last night, she is probably lying dead someplace in that "downsized" house and no one has noticed yet.

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the walk to the cellblock is about a quarter mile up a HUGE HILL. Sure as shit Max wasn't going to help with the toddler-transport, if he couldn't be assed to pull her back from the street in their own driveway.

To be fair, there is a shuttle to take people from the bottom of the hill up to the cellblock. It's like the golf cart with multiple cars kind of shuttle that they have in the Disneyland parking lot.

What's worse is the long line you have to stand in to get on the ferry to Alcatraz. I can't imagine all the poor people standing in line being forced to listen to Max yelling the whole time.

Honestly, Alcatraz doesn't seem very fun for a kid Nora's age but I saw several families with toddlers (some with strollers) when I went last month. You can't take the strollers inside the buildings though so it may have been more hassle than it's worth to bring one. If they went to see the Ai Weiwei exhibit while they are there, I could see that being a lot more interesting than the actual cellblock tour for Nora. She would probably love the room full of Lego portraits and really like the huge dragon.

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One small thing that bothered me about the episode was mysterious absence of Sydney and Victor! Don't get me wrong, I am happy to have a Sydney free episode. I just assumed that when Julia had a date, the kids must have been with Joel, but then Joel showed up to try and save his marriage! 

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Most of my other thoughts about this episode have already been posted, so I'll just post this rather mundane one: When Drew and Zeke pulled up to the drive-through window, why on earth did Drew turn off the car? And then it took forever for anyone to take their order. And the menu board was giant and way too close to the car for them to be able to read it from where they were sitting. Is that a real burger place in the Bay Area?

Some of the posts about Amber's delicate condition are cracking me up. Any mother of more than one kid knows that life pretty much goes on while you're pregnant -- you drive, go on field trips, walk, take the ferry, care for other kids, and all that normal stuff. Of course, the previews showed that Amber may go into preterm labor, but confining my comments to what we've seen up to this point in the season, there's no reason to believe that 7-month-pregnant Amber would be unable to do what we saw in this episode.

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Is that a real burger place in the Bay Area?

Nope, but according to google, there is a Big Top Burger in Indiana.

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They are pulling this "farewell season" band-aid off one hair at a time.

 

I kept thinking there was going to be a car crash, a gun death... death by taro root frozen yogurt.... something, ANYTHING to bring some drama into the proceedings here. I cannot stand Zeek, so he can kick it any time now. Natalie was way off-base about him. The guy's an ass.

Edited by panthergirl13.
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death by taro root frozen yogurt

If this is even a remote possibility, I will be rooting for it to happen! Maybe Zeek, Max, and Natalie will be there too.

I just realized that one of the reasons this episode wasn't as painful as usual (aside from Max being obnoxious) was that we didn't see Adam, Kristina, Crosby, or Sydney. Can we keep that up, show?

Edited by ElectricBoogaloo.
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I may be in the minority (Cattitude, I see you're with me) but I didn't have a problem with what he said to Joel.  It's very much in character, he doesn't filter his opinions, he loves Joel and Julia, Julia is perfectly free and able to shut Joel down once and for all, it just doesn't strike me as a terrible thing to do.  Either it prompts a reconciliation or it doesn't, I suppose he figures nothing ventured, nothing gained.

 

I agree. I'm pretty sure Zeke knows there has been a major lack of communication (mainly from Joel) contributing to the breakdown of their marriage. I think "fight for your marriage" is just another way of saying "make your feelings known, before it's too late".

 

I love Joel, but why did they have to pull this last minute brink of divorce now it's time for a reconcilation. Ugghh.

 

So true. This last minute rethink would have made much more sense if it had happened before Joel moved out and broke up the family. But, sadly, sensible storylines are not for this show any more.

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And why, oh why did they planned to take Nora to Alcatraz? Do these people think? There is nothing for a toddler there, unless she wants to look at birds, which she can do at the park? Or maybe she is a genius who will put on the headphones and learn about the history of the prison.

 

I honestly had no idea why they would have even planned that kind of trip for when Amber was watching the kids.  Max is awful to begin with, and as you note, it's not really a place to bring such a young child. It would have made more sense if Amber was taking Max while someone else looked after Nora.  I mean, it's a large family. I can't imagine there was no one else to watch Nora while Amber took Max to the prison.  

 

And obviously, shut up Natalie.  This isn't your family, you have no idea as to the dynamics and no one asked your opinion.  Also, if I tell someone I am busy at a certain time, but they decide that what they want to do is more important than my schedule, that would be selfish. 

 

 

So true. This last minute rethink would have made much more sense if it had happened before Joel moved out and broke up the family. But, sadly, sensible storylines are not for this show any more.

 

A thousand times this.  I would be much more impressed with Julia if she actually told Joel that he can't just show up on the eve of their divorce to suddenly declare he wants to fight for her.  It's extremely unfair to Julia, and frankly, it's a nasty way of messing with her emotions during a very trying time. 

 

And finally, I am mixed on Hank.  I feel his declaration of having Aspergers was being used to excuse his rather terrible behavior with Sarah, his wife and Amber.  It is like Hank is desperate to explain his behavior in a way that absolves him of blame.  I just think if the doctor wasn't sure if Hank had Aspergers, how is it Hank knows better?       

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In what world would Adam and Kristina leave the two kids alone for a few days w/Amber who is barely mobile at this stage of her pregnancy? 

 

In a world where Kristina especially but Adam to an extent are selfish to the point of lacking all empathy and compassion?

 

Having said that, I think Zeke interfering the way he did with his advice to Joel was very inappropriate.

 

I get that, but I also understand where Zeke was coming from.  My bro-in-law has been with my sister for 17 years, and I consider him to be a part of our family.  He's been there for all our major milestones and holidays and just everyday stuff.  I would hate to have him disappear, and I can completely understand the inclination to say "Don't give up, fight for her!"​

 

I got the impression that Julia had gotten to a place where she may be receptive to Joel wanting to fight for the marriage.  The elevator scene seemed to have a lot of mixed emotions going on, she didn't want her new guy to spend the night, the look on her face when Joel showed up.  Maybe I'm reading too much in to it because I want them back together, though.  

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Hank's family excluding Sarah like that (for the froyo run) was ridiculous. Of the three of them - no one thought to invite Sarah?

 

Actually, as frustrating as that was to watch, it made perfect sense to me. Sandy is working to assert her position as the alpha female in the group, Ruby's a bratty teenager who will play the three adults against each other at any opportunity in order to serve her own needs. And Hank, oh my goodness. I just find him the most annoying guy. Sarah had the chance to be with the handsome rich guy (last season)who had his "stuff" together, no issues, and clearly adored her, or Hank.

And she chose Hank. Oh wait. She was engaged to the cute younger teacher 2 years ago, who also had his act together, no issues, and clearly adored her, or Hank. And she chose Hank.

Oh Sarah.

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Actually, as frustrating as that was to watch, it made perfect sense to me. Sandy is working to assert her position as the alpha female in the group, Ruby's a bratty teenager who will play the three adults against each other at any opportunity in order to serve her own needs. And Hank, oh my goodness. I just find him the most annoying guy. Sarah had the chance to be with the handsome rich guy (last season)who had his "stuff" together, no issues, and clearly adored her, or Hank.

I can kinda get Ruby and her mother, for the reasons you cited, as well as maybe wanting the family unit together again. But Hank being so rude to Sarah doesn't make any sense. He's in a relationship with her, and he cares about her. And the show is suddenly running amok with his asperger's, using it as an excuse for him all the time. Remember the episode when Amber was in the hospital for some reason? Hank drove all the way (it was far away), and stayed, to be there for both Sarah and Amber. What happened to that guy? They're now writing him as an idiot, 100% of the time.

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I snorted when Ruby's mother got all prim about her teenage daughter watching Fast Times at Ridgemont High. Oooooh, boobies... Horrors that a teenage girl might see those.

Between Joel and hot new guy, Julia's a winner either way.

I wouldn't call it selfish for Adam and Kristina to go away for a few days and leave the kids with Amber. Amber is an adult and it's good for parents and kids to spend time apart. I've seen families where the parents never leave their kids for more than a couple hours, and it never turns out well. Besides, A&K were away on business, not that it matters if they were hanging out on a beach somewhere.

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Sandy is a total rude bitch.  The rule to making those blended present and X-families mix, is never to leave anyone out.

 

That was really awful.  When she looked up and saw Sarah watching them, I thought she was going to invite her to come along too.  Just leaving her like that was ridiculous.

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I snorted when Ruby's mother got all prim about her teenage daughter watching Fast Times at Ridgemont High. Oooooh, boobies... Horrors that a teenage girl might see those.

And Sarah said it was on tv so they were blurred out boobies.

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I just realized that one of the reasons this episode wasn't as painful as usual (aside from Max being obnoxious) was that we didn't see Adam, Kristina, Crosby, or Sydney. Can we keep that up, show?

I'm mostly with you there, although I absolutely love Monica Potter's face-acting. Kristina as a character is kind of dopey and unbelievable at this point, but I do enjoy those facial expressions.

But Hank being so rude to Sarah doesn't make any sense. He's in a relationship with her, and he cares about her. And the show is suddenly running amok with his asperger's, using it as an excuse for him all the time. Remember the episode when Amber was in the hospital for some reason? Hank drove all the way (it was far away), and stayed, to be there for both Sarah and Amber. What happened to that guy? They're now writing him as an idiot, 100% of the time.

Exactly!! And even when he said that he didn't know why Amber was crying, that made no sense. She TOLD him why she was upset when he opened the door.

 

So many shows are shitting the bed in their final seasons. I have to believe that the downside of a planned finish is that the good writers go find other jobs before the series is complete to avoid being unemployed.

 

I keep saying this, but it continually proves that Breaking Bad was truly unique in terms of consistency from start to finish. 

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Breaking Bad wrote the book on ending a story. They ratcheted up the drama and emotional stakes instead of winding down. Parenthood is kind of upping the stakes but not gracefully. Joel and Julia's split has become tedious already, and Hank and Ruby and Sandy aren't central to the Bravermans. I guess I will reserve judgment on resolutions with Crosby and Adam's business and the return of Mark, etc. The only character development that's really resonating with me so far is Drew 's.

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Ugh, Max was terribles, and I could feel for Amber's fear -- what if I have a Max?  She's been in lalal land of cute, sweet, pink, cooing babies, without thinking that she's going to be responsible for raising, disciplining, and shaping a person into an adult -- and that person could have challenges.  Or, just be a little jerk.  

 

The rest of it, though, Sarah was right -- Amber had planned too much, taking two kids (one being Max) to Alcatraz is a big day.  The idea that Amber couldn't find the keys was silly -- check your bag, dodo.  Was the car just unlocked all night?  

 

I don't get the whole "Joel needs to fight for his marriage" -- I think he's done that several times already this season.   

 

 

And Sarah said it was on tv so they were blurred out boobies.

Fast Times is pretty racy.  I mean, what's Judge Reinhold's character doing when Phoebe Cates is coming out of the pool (I think I"m remembering correctly)?  Though it does have a good message that rushing into sex just to have sex is not satisfying, and there's nothing wrong with dating the nice boy and taking it slow.  It's not something I watched with my parents!

 

 

And obviously, shut up Natalie.  This isn't your family, you have no idea as to the dynamics and no one asked your opinion.  Also, if I tell someone I am busy at a certain time, but they decide that what they want to do is more important than my schedule, that would be selfish.

Seriously -- don't answer the phone for Drew, when you know he has to study and doesn't have time to gallivant off with Zeke.  If something is happening to his grandfather, his mother will call.  Zeke's not going to call Drew in a medical emergency.  That said, hopefully Drew has learned to be less passive/passive-aggressive.  If he has to study, his family (and friends, NATALIE) need to respect that.  Don't give in to pressure to abandon necessary study plans -- be firm and get what you need done done so you have a GPA that renders you employable for your $50k a year education.  But don't blow up at Zeke -- that was rude (especially the surly "just get in the car," given Zeke gave him the car!). 

Edited by annlaw78.
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Fast Times is pretty racy.  I mean, what's Judge Reinhold's character doing when Phoebe Cates is coming out of the pool (I think I"m remembering correctly)?  Though it does have a good message that rushing into sex just to have sex is not satisfying, and there's nothing wrong with dating the nice boy and taking it slow.  It's not something I watched with my parents!

But isn't Ruby in High School? In 2014? To me it showed exactly how out of touch her mother was, to think that this movie (on TV, no less) would be "inappropriate" for her. Unfortunately I don't think that was the show's intention. It appeared to be saying "Lorelei/Sarah is such a permissive parent and THAT'S why her daughter is pregnant out of wedlock." BLARGH.

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The rest of it, though, Sarah was right -- Amber had planned too much, taking two kids (one being Max) to Alcatraz is a big day.  The idea that Amber couldn't find the keys was silly -- check your bag, dodo.  Was the car just unlocked all night?

 

I could be wrong, but I think Norah was putting away a puzzle or toys into a box and scooped up the keys off of the table and put those in, too and covered the box.  That would be hard for anyone to find because you wouldn't think to look there, but you're right, Amber didn't really try to look much at all. 

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But isn't Ruby in High School? In 2014? To me it showed exactly how out of touch her mother was, to think that this movie (on TV, no less) would be "inappropriate" for her. Unfortunately I don't think that was the show's intention. It appeared to be saying "Lorelei/Sarah is such a permissive parent and THAT'S why her daughter is pregnant out of wedlock." BLARGH.

I thought the mom was being obnoxious to call Sarah out like that and make a big deal about it (and attacking Sarah's parenting AND the product of it, Amber, which is just nasty).  I just mean while there are some shows I may let my (imaginary) teen daughter watch with her friends, I don't think I'd necessarily want to watch it with her.  Like how I still leave the room when sex scenes come on when I'm watching something with my parents, even though I'm fully grown.  It's just... awkward.  

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But isn't Ruby in High School? In 2014? To me it showed exactly how out of touch her mother was, to think that this movie (on TV, no less) would be "inappropriate" for her. Unfortunately I don't think that was the show's intention. It appeared to be saying "Lorelei/Sarah is such a permissive parent and THAT'S why her daughter is pregnant out of wedlock." BLARGH.

Fast Times is rated R. Regardless of personal opinions of specific movies, my view is that parents get to make the call about what their kids get to watch. What I got from it was merely that Sarah had overstepped by watching an R rated movie with an underage kid without clearing it with her parents. I was one of those over- protective parents. My kids watched PG-13 movies at age 13, and R movies at 17, with some exceptions, but I made the exceptions, not someone else. I had similar rules about video games. It worked out well for my kids.

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Fast Times is rated R. Regardless of personal opinions of specific movies, my view is that parents get to make the call about what their kids get to watch. What I got from it was merely that Sarah had overstepped by watching an R rated movie with an underage kid without clearing it with her parents. I was one of those over- protective parents. My kids watched PG-13 movies at age 13, and R movies at 17, with some exceptions, but I made the exceptions, not someone else. I had similar rules about video games. It worked out well for my kids.

 

I think that if Ruby is spending half of her time with Sarah and Hank, than Sandy needs to make her parenting choices clear before hand. She was unfair to expect Sarah to follow her rules without first stating what they are. If the movie bothered Sandy, and she had neglected to say that she does not want Ruby to watch rated R movies, she should have just said next time I'd rather her watch something less racy. It was the same thing with the Ruby shoplifting incident! Sandy freaked out at Hank for knowing to keep a closer eye on Ruby, without ever mentioning how much trouble Ruby was getting into (like shoplifting!).

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Fast Times is rated R.

 

But the version they were watching was apparently on broadcast TV, so I would think it had to be edited down to no more than PG.  Still, the dynamic being set up between Hank, Sarah and his ex-wife is pretty obnoxious.  And while I think Ray Romano is to be applauded for the job he's doing as Hank, the writing for this character has become pretty awful since he was first introduced.

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Ugh, Max was terribles, and I could feel for Amber's fear -- what if I have a Max?

I feel for the baby's fear, from the womb: oh no! Am I going to be a Braverman?

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That was really awful.  When she looked up and saw Sarah watching them, I thought she was going to invite her to come along too.  Just leaving her like that was ridiculous.

Hmmm.... I thought they did invite Sarah toward the end of their discussion. WAY WAY toward the end.

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Fast Times is rated R. Regardless of personal opinions of specific movies, my view is that parents get to make the call about what their kids get to watch. What I got from it was merely that Sarah had overstepped by watching an R rated movie with an underage kid without clearing it with her parents. I was one of those over- protective parents. My kids watched PG-13 movies at age 13, and R movies at 17, with some exceptions, but I made the exceptions, not someone else. I had similar rules about video games. It worked out well for my kids.

But Hank was right there. So I assume he had no issue with Ruby watching the movie. - and if he wasn't paying enough attention to figure out what the movie was about then that is HIS problem and his ex-wife should have complained about how HE let their daughter watch that movie, not Sarah. And if the ex-wife is going to changing what time she'll be picking up Ruby, maybe she should let Hank know not Ruby. The part where they all left to go get Frozen yoghurt was very insensitive. What on earth does Sarah see in Hank anyways?

It should not have taken Joel this long to decide he wants to fight for Julia. Although I am curious as to where the kids were all the time. (Maybe they were having a sleep over with Jabbar or something - it didn't seem like they were at either parent's house considering Joel was visiting Zeek, and Julia was supposed to go on a date - and while I think their son is old enough to baby sit for a couple of hours in the afternoon, I don't think that he should at night).

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Hmmm.... I thought they did invite Sarah toward the end of their discussion. WAY WAY toward the end.

 

They said, "do you mind if we steal him."  That suggests she wasn't invited.  And she wasn't with there when they showed Sandy, Hank, and Ruby walking down the street.

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Max talking like a robot. Autistic people are not robot. They don't talk like robots and sometimes they sound monotone because they script some. In some situations, to make interaction easier, they might script and that gives us the impression of a voice without in flexion.

 

Yeah, I don't remember Max being this robotic. He's always been stilted but this show had him acting like Data from Star Trek.

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Hey, show? You're still using paid adult writers and paying your actors, right? Call the police - you're seriously being robbed. Heck, I was going to call the police. Felonious viewer assault with piss poor writing and acting.

 

I've never actually felt relief to see characters, but oh, was I happy to see Joel and Julia. Subtlety. Genuine emotion. I'm ignoring the BS they pulled with the white knight "I want you back" crap at the end because their other scenes were the only bright moments in this dreck.

 

Hank - your response to Sarah when she asked why you didn't find out why Amber was crying? Should be: "she cries all the freakin' time. She always has a crisis. As the 90s song says and as age old parenting advice goes: 'let her cry.' She'll live. Well, probably."

 

No sympathy for Sarah and her sadz with the developing love triangle. FWIW, if I'd done something I wasn't allowed to do at a friend's house and my mom found out, *I* got reamed a new one, not my friend's parents. Gee, Sandy, how's about asking your brat to take a little responsibility? She's already gotten away with stealing a lipstick, do you really care if she watches an R-rated movie? 

 

And, Sarah, I realize you want to play the cool, big sis figure, but you should be grown up enough to at least ask Hank what the rules are. hank should be good at rules, right? I want to be a cool aunt and a fun babysitter, too, but even I know that it's irresponsible to give in to a kid's every wish.

 

Max is a full blown SNL skit at this point. Some random, incomprehensible mix of Rainman, Damien, the robot from Lost in Space, and a lifetime movie stock stalker character. Oh...wait...I'm not supposed to laugh?

 

Amber, just...gah! I hate this storyline. I honestly think this show is promoting her getting pregnant as the answer to all of her problems and that really pisses me off. Yes, indeed, young women, if you're a little despondent and feeling lost, have hospital sex with your ex and get pregnant! It'll fix everything eventually! 

 

And yeah, I call BS on the ret con of her character - she used to be a good babysitter. Being pregnant does not turn you into a complete mess who can't manage kids at all. And who thought it was believable that they'd walk out to the car with no car keys? Smart, writers!

 

*slightly off topic - I am so happy to hear that Alcatraz bans strollers on parts of its tour. Nothing kills a nice day at the zoo or a museum like having an entitled, a-hole "adult" shove their stroller (with a sleeping kid, by the way) to the front of the display, crushing the toes and bruising the heels of innocent bystanders who actually paid admission. 

 

It's not a good sign when I spend an episode thinking, "I so cannot wait to call this BS out on the boards and/or see who brings the snark about THIS..."

 

 

 

 

 

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The rest of it, though, Sarah was right -- Amber had planned too much, taking two kids (one being Max) to Alcatraz is a big day.  The idea that Amber couldn't find the keys was silly -- check your bag, dodo.  Was the car just unlocked all night?  

 

 

Nora hid them. She was dumping stuff in a box on the coffee table while Amber and Max were fighting about leaving on time and she had the keys and dropped them in. I loved how Amber apparently doesn't lock Adam and Kristina's house when she leaves. Safe! 

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As far as Amber taking the kids to Alcatraz, Adam and Kristina have two cars, don't they?  Presumably they travelled to Sacramento together, why wouldn't they have handed Amber the keys to their remaining car and told her to use it since it was a)safer and more reliable, b) already had a carseat installed, c) her stroller was in the trunk and d) they'd filled it with gas so she wouldn't have to spend any of her limited funds to haul their kids around?  No logic there.

 

It also made no sense for anyone to think that a trip to Alcatraz was a logical outing for Amber and the two kids.  Nora is unlikely to enjoy the tour there which involves using headphones and hearing about the history of the building and those who worked and lived there.  In addition she's small enough to need at least one nap a day; that trip was going to take up most of the day.  We already know what a worthless, selfish jerk Max is.  No way was he going to help with Nora or understand if the trip got cut short because Nora got too tired or Amber got seasick.  Having done the tour myself a few years back, it involves quit a bit of walking.  Not the ideal trip for a pregnant woman and a toddler, especially when accompanied by Max who sees himself as the center of the universe.  Dropping Max at the movies and taking Nora to a local park to ride on a swing for an hour or two makes far more sense in this situation.

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As far as Amber taking the kids to Alcatraz, Adam and Kristina have two cars, don't they?  Presumably they travelled to Sacramento together, why wouldn't they have handed Amber the keys to their remaining car and told her to use it since it was a)safer and more reliable, b) already had a carseat installed, c) her stroller was in the trunk and d) they'd filled it with gas so she wouldn't have to spend any of her limited funds to haul their kids around?  No logic there.

 

In addition she's small enough to need at least one nap a day; that trip was going to take up most of the day.  

 

To be fair, the plan was to take Kristina and Adam's car, but Nora hid the keys! Toddlers are master hiders. And, some toddlers do drop naps earlier than others. My son stopped napping a couple of months before the age of two - I still have not forgiven him. :)

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Amber was going to take Adam and Kristina's car with the car seat ready to go - but that's the vehicle whose keys were lost. Then she decided to take her own bucket of bolts and realized it was too small for a toddler car seat.

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Felonious viewer assault with piss poor writing and acting.

I just wanted this here, because it is THAT good!

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Hey All,

 

I'm a new member of Previously.TV and I am thankful for a place that still allows episode discussions of TV shows.  I used to post to TV.com and TWOP, but those two sites no longer allow posting. Well, TV.com does, but most visitors no longer post there and TWOP has gone belly up.  Anyway, I did mange to catch up on "Parenthood" after starting to watch it around a month ago.  I've been meaning to watch this series because I'm a big fan of Lauren Graham (such a hottie, yeah, I'm a dude) and drooled all the time watching her on GG. (Something I told an ex-girlfriend I would NEVER do because it was just for chicks - I know, I went there)

 

Anyway, I just want to vent my anger about a few things. First things first; Zeek, go to Hell.  I never understood why his family tolerates this insensitive a$$hole. I'm sure they all love him, but I never understood why. My main complaint about Zeek is that he feels this incessant need to involve himself in everybody's business, but when you try to talk to him about HIS business, the first thing out of his mouth is that "It's none of your business!".  Dude, shut up. Camille should be canonized for Sainthood.

 

Next up, and this should be a group award, "Worst Family on Television", and the award goes to Adam, Kristina, AND Max. Max used to be tolerable, but the writers, for  some reason, have turned him into a loathsome character.  He bares no resemblance to the kid from earlier seasons. I would think he should be mellowing out right now and getting a hand on his Aspergers.  However, right now he's just a plot-driven caricature.  I never understood why his parents tolerated such behavior.  Gaby did a wonderful job with him, and since Crosby (I don't want to even get started talking about the man-child Crosby) screwed that up - literally, Max has gone downhill ever since and his parents just tolerate it.

 

I'm cool with everyone else.  I like Joel and Julia; I can take Sydney for small stretches, because I understand her frustrations. Her parents bring in this sullen kid, Victor, then separate.  It IS rather traumatic for a child. I have three grown sons and ten grandchildren, so I've been there.  Sarah, (what can I say, Lauren Graham) but she DOES have this knack for picking the wrong guys. (Ahem, Christopher, the shithead from GG) and while I basically like Hank, his character has fluctuated this season. The writers just aren't consistent with their characters this season and are either mailing it in or they just don't give a shit. What a shame.  Anyway, I feel better getting this crap off my chest.

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I swore I wasn't going to weigh in on pregnancy belly, but here goes... I'm pregnant with twins. Due around middle of February. It's my first pregnancy and I find myself holding my belly going down stairs because, while I logically know it won't bounce, I feel like I'm somehow stabilising the babies inside. On reflection, I'm laughing at how ridiculous that thought is. All I can equate it to is when you're going to need an egg yolk for a recipe and you somehow fear that handling the eggs roughly will break the yolk, but not the shell. I find, and here's a note for the writers, that I'm holding my back more than my front the longer this goes on.

I think they're going to do a premature birth. :( watching the scene with Amber and Crosby looked like that's where this was heading.

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And yeah, I call BS on the ret con of her character - she used to be a good babysitter. Being pregnant does not turn you into a complete mess who can't manage kids at all.

 

I don't really call it a retcon.  I think you can be great at watching kids for a few hours, but not be able to handle it well if that period was extended to two or three days.  And that doesn't even get into how difficult and out of control Max has become.  Looking at the huge tantrum he had when the trip to Alcatraz was cancelled unexpectedly, I honestly have no idea how he would even able to function outside an extremely controlled environment. 

Edited by txhorns79.
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And yeah, I call BS on the ret con of her character - she used to be a good babysitter. Being pregnant does not turn you into a complete mess who can't manage kids at all. And who thought it was believable that they'd walk out to the car with no car keys? Smart, writers!

 

I was amused by the whole storyline after I remembered that Mae Whitman played the little girl in One Fine Day, a movie with a plot centered on two people who aren't able to get their kids to a boat on time.  The only difference is that the parents weren't supposed to go with the kids on that particular outing.  Poor Amber was stuck with Max either way.

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I just assumed that when Julia had a date, the kids must have been with Joel, but then Joel showed up to try and save his marriage!

I think those were two different days - both had changed their clothes in the meantime.  I assumed that Joel had the kids when Julia had ... her dude (name? no idea) over and then the next night, the kids were upstairs in bed at Julia's when Joel showed up.  

 

As much as I loved most of the scenes with Joel and Julia, can I vent for a moment about the house issue at the mediation? This is not an all or nothing split.  Julia's suggestion? Sensible (and it has to be, since she's a lawyer and not stupid.)  Joel's suggestion? Very sentimental.  But SO UNREALISTIC - it's not a question of "We sell the house or one of us keeps it and the other gets nothing" - any mediator put in that position (and I'm going to ignore that neither of them had their own lawyer with them because also: No) would say, "Ok, how about an agreement that whenever Julia decides to sell the house, there's a split of the proceeds at that time?" It's nice to be sentimental for television, but Julia's right: it's an asset and it's wholly unrealistic (but dramatic!) to be like, "Yeah, ok, it's sentimental, so you take it."  That's what you say about a teapot or a turkey platter*, not the biggest asset you own.

 

*The Thanksgiving turkey platter being one of those things that gets fought over in a family I know.  Not mine, I swear.

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As much as I loved most of the scenes with Joel and Julia, can I vent for a moment about the house issue at the mediation? This is not an all or nothing split.  Julia's suggestion? Sensible (and it has to be, since she's a lawyer and not stupid.)  Joel's suggestion? Very sentimental.  But SO UNREALISTIC - it's not a question of "We sell the house or one of us keeps it and the other gets nothing" - any mediator put in that position (and I'm going to ignore that neither of them had their own lawyer with them because also: No) would say, "Ok, how about an agreement that whenever Julia decides to sell the house, there's a split of the proceeds at that time?" It's nice to be sentimental for television, but Julia's right: it's an asset and it's wholly unrealistic (but dramatic!) to be like, "Yeah, ok, it's sentimental, so you take it."  That's what you say about a teapot or a turkey platter*, not the biggest asset you own.

 

*The Thanksgiving turkey platter being one of those things that gets fought over in a family I know.  Not mine, I swear.

Right, the house is not the thing tacked on t o the end of the agreement. It would be that one person gets the house, the other gets most of the other assets. Or one person buys out the other for their half of the house.

For most couples, the house is the biggest asset. So, you don't divide up EVERYTHING else, then say ok, who gets the house?

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I thought it was pretty hokey that the aging, urban strip mall had "recently" replaced the rural, bucolic splendor of Zeke's salad days.  That wasn't some new development -- it looked like it'd been there since the 70s.  Zeke really had no idea that the area had changed in the past 40 years? 

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I thought it was pretty hokey that the aging, urban strip mall had "recently" replaced the rural, bucolic splendor of Zeke's salad days.  That wasn't some new development -- it looked like it'd been there since the 70s.  Zeke really had no idea that the area had changed in the past 40 years? 

Yeah, exactly, that's what I was thinking.  If this was a place Zeke had fond memories of from his youth with his father that would be about fifty years ago at least, how could he not know the place was no longer there? 

 

Zeek has been a font of bad advice since the surgery.  Encouraging Drew to blow off studying? Encouraging Julia's husband to fight to get her back even though he really knows nothing of the details of why they are divorcing.  How does he know what's best for them?  Also telling Julia it's okay that Sydney is a mess, so don't worry about it because as a parent it's her job to mess up her kids' lives anyway? WTF Zeek?

 

Has he always been this way and I just never noticed?  No, that can't be, because I remember some good scenes between him and Victor as well as Amber's baby-daddy from last few seasons.  So is he heavily medicated which is affecting his judgment?  Or is he afflicted by early-onset dementia?  Regardless, poor Camille.

 

Edited by JasminePhyllisia.
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As much as I loved most of the scenes with Joel and Julia, can I vent for a moment about the house issue at the mediation? This is not an all or nothing split.  Julia's suggestion? Sensible (and it has to be, since she's a lawyer and not stupid.)  Joel's suggestion? Very sentimental.  But SO UNREALISTIC - it's not a question of "We sell the house or one of us keeps it and the other gets nothing" - any mediator put in that position (and I'm going to ignore that neither of them had their own lawyer with them because also: No) would say, "Ok, how about an agreement that whenever Julia decides to sell the house, there's a split of the proceeds at that time?"

 

Julia initially said the house should be sold, and the proceeds split between she and Joel.  It was Joel who disagreed and said that it should go to Julia.  The mediator isn't there to argue with the parties about what would be absolutely fair in splitting their assets, he's only there to facilitate the parties in dividing assets when they cannot agree or are not certain of something.  If the parties agree on how an asset should be split, it's not the mediator's place to tell them he thinks they are wrong. 

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No, but it's the mediator's job to mediate, as in, make suggestions and give advice. Not just nod and agree.

I thought it was silly when Joel apologizes for his lack of furniture and then says he figures he should buy some stuff now. Uh, how about picking a few things out of the houseful of furniture that is half yours? Surely, Julia can spare a chair.

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No, but it's the mediator's job to mediate, as in, make suggestions and give advice. Not just nod and agree.

 

It honestly depends on the situation.  He's neutral, and if the parties already agree on how to split certain assets, it isn't his position to decide he knows better.  He's there to mediate a dispute, or advise on the process in general for parties who may not understand.  He isn't there to revisit areas already agreed upon. 

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It honestly depends on the situation.  He's neutral, and if the parties already agree on how to split certain assets, it isn't his position to decide he knows better.  He's there to mediate a dispute, or advise on the process in general for parties who may not understand.  He isn't there to revisit areas already agreed upon.

Yeah, and in the context of this show, in which no one really ever has significant, life-altering money issues, this is rather par for the course.  In reality, "Joel" could not afford to make such a grand gesture, because the recent loss of "Julia's" income, and the added pressures of supporting two households on his construction draws would inject some pragmatism into the proceedings.  

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In reality, "Joel" could not afford to make such a grand gesture, because the recent loss of "Julia's" income, and the added pressures of supporting two households on his construction draws would inject some pragmatism into the proceedings.

 

I totally agree.  The reality is that Joel's gesture was very sweet, but extremely farfetched.  He and Julia don't appear to have any major assets aside from the house, so if he simply gave it up, it would probably leave him in real financial trouble. 

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