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S02.E09: The Missing Page

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Tyler goes out with Cyrus's sister. Chloe confronts Bryce about the tapes. Jess wonders if she's ready to date again. Mr. Porter wrestles with regret.

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I can't deny that they gave Derek Luke some great material to work with, and he delivered. The Porter scenes in the courtroom were top notch. As an adult, I think he has the most to lose with this trial stuff and with his name being on the tapes, and it showed how that weighed on him throughout the episode. He felt responsible for being the adult and not seeing the signs, just like Olivia is working through that realization as well. But more to the point, he was recognizing how the school didn't do anything. His moment of apology toward the Baker family was strong. 

So, Chloe is completely turned off of Bryce now and I gotta say, I completely expected it to go the other way. Even though she's still trying to process and figure out what she wants to do, and as much as she is torn by her feelings for Bryce with doing the right thing, it's clear that she is, at least, considering dumping Bryce, although I suspect that he'll use what information he has against her. For example, I suspect if she tried to testify against him, Bryce would use the movie sex scene from the previous episode against her. She never said no, she gave consent despite the fact that her body language was screaming that she didn't want it, etc. Congrats show; I went from disliking Chloe due to my suspicion on whose side she'd choose when this all came out, to feeling sympathy for her and hoping that she does get away from the creepy controlling rapist. 

I really liked Jessica's scene with her dad. Her realization that she's not ready to date yet and that light hearted moment was great to see. 

So, Clay jumps in with Tyler and Cyrus, only to figure out The Clubhouse. Also, Justin finally gets away from his household, hopefully for good. I also hope that his mother doesn't stay with her meth drug dealer. I think she's a complete coward, but I fully believe her and Justin when they've talked about Seth killing them. I wonder if this season's going to end with Justin discovering that his mother did, indeed, die because she didn't get away. 

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Mr Porter's courtroom scenes were perfect.
Bryce can eat shit but when he said "Jesus, chew your fucking food" to that jackwad teammate, I laughed out loud.

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Clay's dad has not been a huge part of the story, but I think that in general he's a nice guy so I had to laugh when he showed a bit of realistic cynicism after Clay said some people online called him a murderer because he was on the tapes and his dad's response was basically "Don't you know better than to read the comments on the internet?"

I find it interesting that Bryce's mom is the one who believes her son is guilty of the accusations.

Aww, watching Tyler and Mackenzie stealthily move to hold hands at the movie theater was cute. No matter how old you were the first time you went on a movie date and tried to figure out how to casually get the other person to hold your hand, you always remember that! But what was up with the very explicit instructions to only put butter on the popcorn that was on the left side of the container?

The entire time that Bryce and Chloe were talking about Hannah, I was like NOOOOOOO, don't believe anything that lying liar says to you!

Zach can be coward, but he has a good heart. He was very sweet to check on Chloe. If only she hadn't assumed that he was only asking because Bryce asked him to check up on her, maybe she would have told him how she really felt.

Seeing that Mr. Porter has genuine heartfelt regret did a lot to help improve my opinion of him from last season. Hell, even from earlier this season. He has gone from trying to protect his own ass to realizing that he could have done more and that he needs to admit it, even if it means losing his job and possibly never being hired as a high school counselor again. The kids are more protected since they're underage, but he is an adult so his name will be in the papers for everyone to see.

It's been nice to see Jessica smile this season. But her dad needs to STFU. He doesn't understand why she's "putting herself out there" by kissing a boy? He should be glad that she feels okay enough to kiss a boy again.

Although I've been slightly wary of Cyrus, so far the things that he and Tyler have done have been less awful than the things Bryce and some of the others on the tapes have done. Marcus getting a pink explosion in the face? That's barely above a practical joke. Blackmailing Marcus into calling Bryce a rapist at the baseball field ceremony? Embarrassing for Marcus but it was still true. Catfishing Ryan? Not nice but pretty mild since to the rest of the world, it just looked like he was sitting at the coffee shop which is not exactly next level embarrasment. Vandalizing the baseball field? I mean, yeah, that's an actual crime but still no lies. Bryce and his goons beating Clay up in the locker room was far worse than any of those things. The meanest thing that Tyler and Cyrus have done so far is leaving the creepy stalker pictures of his sister in his locker (although I guess if we believe Tyler, he wasn't responsible for that).

On 5/20/2018 at 4:57 PM, mledawn said:

Bryce can eat shit but when he said "Jesus, chew your fucking food" to that jackwad teammate, I laughed out loud.

That cracked me up too. He might be a bully and a rapist, but even he has table manners! Like seriously, guys. Chew your food with your mouths closed.

Edited by ElectricBoogaloo
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I cracked up when Bryce's father was telling Bryce that a woman who loves you should be respected and Bryce's mother (who is a "hey, it's that actress") looked at him like "Bitch since when?"

Derek Luke was fantastic.

Jessica's dad barely looks older than he did when he played Martin Kendall on The Cosby Show. "Is that a serious question?"

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34 minutes ago, Empress1 said:

I cracked up when Bryce's father was telling Bryce that a woman who loves you should be respected and Bryce's mother (who is a "hey, it's that actress") looked at him like "Bitch since when?"

Brenda Strong! aka Sue Ellen Mischke on Seinfeld and Mary Alice on Desperate Housewives (among other things, but those are the two I will always remember her for).

But yeah, that look she shot him was like "Uh, seriously?"

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Strongest episode of the season so far. Kevin's admission of guilt and remorse really caught me off guard. I was bawling right alongside. Wonder who the mystery woman is?

 

I didn't see Clay joining the Assholes coming, so that was an awesome twist.

 

Looks like we are rolling to another strong finish! I am off today so I should be able to binge through it.

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4 hours ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

Brenda Strong! aka Sue Ellen Mischke on Seinfeld and Mary Alice on Desperate Housewives (among other things, but those are the two I will always remember her for).

But yeah, that look she shot him was like "Uh, seriously?"

I think it was this same episode where they're discussing whether Bryce should wear glasses to testify.

Dad: They make you look kind and compassionate.

Mom (with a Look): or, uh, he could....be those things.

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Mr. Porter really came through this time! His plan of beating people up for his students wasn't working, so now he turns on the school in court. Man, I really felt for him when he imagined what he should have said to Hannah, and said that he wanted to make sure that never happens again, and that he screwed up. I think Porter was ill prepared for his job at Liberty, but I think he means well, and is essentially a good person. I feel like the school would fire him, if not try to scapegoat him for this whole thing, but I hope he doesn't, as he seems to actually be getting it now. 

Alex working at the drug store is a good idea, it seems like he had a bit of a breakthrough when he saved Justin. On the other hand, it seems like the memory he seemed to be getting back probably wont be a good thing for his mental health. 

Clay had been working my last nerve this season, but I felt really bad for him when he got beat up, and him joining the Assholes for a mission was fun. I mean, they broke the law, but they arent wrong by any stretch. They have at least one serial rapist they refuse to look into at least, and everyone knows it. And him texting Justin a million times to make sure he as ok was actually quite nice, and you can tell it meant a lot to Justin, especially after Bryce told him last episode how no one gave a shit about him.

I admit, I did actually feel a bit bad for Justin's mom this week. She is a terrible mom and a coward, and leaving your kid to be abused is terrible, but she seems like a deeply broken person, and I do think she loves Justin, although he really shouldn't be in her custody anymore. And she did seem to be truly miserable when she realized that Justin was going down the same path that she did. 

Tony is getting worse with his guilt driving him off the rails, although I dont know who messed with his poor, beautiful car. Was it whoevers messing with everyone else, or was it something to do with beating up that guy?

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23 hours ago, tennisgurl said:

Clay had been working my last nerve this season, but I felt really bad for him when he got beat up, and him joining the Assholes for a mission was fun. I mean, they broke the law, but they arent wrong by any stretch.

While Clay is frustrating and as I noted in another episode thread, has total only child spoiled brat syndrome, I'll still take him over someone like Zach. Clay definitely needs to get over that ridiculous pedestal he put Hannah on and the underlying slut shaming needs to stop. He also needs to stop thinking he knows best for others at times. That said, I still think it's interesting seeing all the comments about what a nice guy Zach is and how easily swayed and swoony some were over the Hannah/Zach summer romance rewrite when frankly, I still prefer Clay's character over him because at least Clay's not a fucking coward.

Yes, Zach checked up on Chloe, which was nice and furthers the "he's such a sweet boy" narrative, but he's still just sitting around making a snide comment or two against Bryce yet not really doing anything. I just feel like before this season ends, I want to see Zach truly not be a fucking coward just once.  Stand up for something. Even if it is just to quit lying about why he's spending time with Alex. Just admit Alex is truly his friend. Not even that he can do. Until that happens, I can never truly like the character because he's just too fucking weak for me to respect. 

Meanwhile, glad to see that Justin only went home to try and get some money because I don't doubt for a second that his mom's crazy meth boyfriend would kill him on sight. Was surprised to see all the messages from Clay to Justin, considering Clay's complete zero fucks attitude when telling his father that Justin left. I guess his dad's lecture to him got through. At first I thought Tyler's friend would be the bad influence that steers him to doing something really bad that hurts people but I think it may be the other way around. While the guy is willing to mess around and do some pranks, he doesn't seem as unstable as Tyler. Tyler screams ticking bomb waiting to explode. I also see they added in his being OCD, as I don't remember that being referenced last season. 

Meanwhile, I don't know if it's because of the nature of this show and it just naturally makes me super paranoid and suspicious of everyone but I find something a little unsettling about Jessica's new friend. I don't think she's batshit or that she'll do anything to Jessica but I don't know, I just don't really care for her and kind of want her to go away. 

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To be fair, everyone is a coward. It's just a matter of what each person is a coward about and how far they're willing to go to feel safe. Clay was a coward about Hannah. He was afraid to ask her out or tell her how he felt about her. Courtney was a coward about letting people know about her sexuality. She was willing to actively attack Hannah in S1 in order to protect her secret. She lied about the picture, she lied about Hannah having a crush on her, etc. all to keep anyone from knowing that she was really gay. Justin, Monty, and Zach were all cowards about the same thing - they were afraid of losing the security of having that powerful/popular group of friends. Sheri was afraid of the consequences of knocking over that sign (even before the accident).

I'm not saying Zach was right to be coward, just that most of the characters on this show have made decisions based on their cowardice. Zach at least made some efforts to be nice - apologizing to Hannah, hanging out with Alex, checking on Chloe. Could he have done more? Definitely. But he has recognized his mistakes and tried to be better.

Clay, on the other hand, keeps thinking that he's the only one who knows how to get justice for Hannah, even if that means wanting Jessica to out herself as the person on tape nine, releasing the tapes (anonymously, of course, so that he doesn't have to take responsibility from anyone but the other people on the tape who realize he did it) which airs everyone's dirty laundry, etc. The only mistake that he seems to acknowledge is that he didn't see Hannah's cries for help, but he thinks all of the other stuff he did was justified and totally okay.

I'm not saying that Zach is better than Clay though because it's not a contest to see who is the worst. Everyone on this show has made mistakes and most of them were made out of fear or cowardice. Some of them are now willing to admit what they've done and try to make things right and be better (Sheri, Zach, and Mr. Porter are the ones who seem to be making the most effort). On the other end of the spectrum are Bryce and Marcus who only care about covering their asses, no matter how many other lives they have to wreck to do it.

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2 hours ago, ElectricBoogaloo said:

Courtney was a coward about letting people know about her sexuality. She was willing to actively attack Hannah in S1 in order to protect her secret. She lied about the picture, she lied about Hannah having a crush on her, etc. all to keep anyone from knowing that she was really gay. Justin, Monty, and Zach were all cowards about the same thing - they were afraid of losing the security of having that powerful/popular group of friends. Sheri was afraid of the consequences of knocking over that sign (even before the accident).

And all of these people were judged and dragged for their actions. People loathed Courtney last season. This season did a lot to redeem her in viewers' eyes, especially when she bravely admitted to being a lesbian on the stand, just so she could defend Hannah against the asshole lawyer's attacks. But all of these characters were called out for their shitty actions. Yet since last season, it seems like Zach often gets the pass of "he's young, it's tough to stand up against bullies, it's not always easy to do the right thing, he is really a sweet boy deep down, he did really care for her even if he ditched her in a heartbeat for his friends because his mom sucks and cripples him emotionally, etc. etc."

I remember even last season someone essentially saying Hannah was an asshole to scream at Zach the way she did in the cafeteria and so his stealing a couple of notes of hers wasn't a big deal. This despite the fact that Hannah quietly told Zach multiple times to go away. But he was a teenage boy who was essentially yelled at and embarrassed in public by her so some "understood" why he later acted out like he did.  The consensus regarding Zach always seemed to be that since he wasn't doing the truly asshole things, just quietly standing by and not doing anything, he wasn't as bad.

And for the record, I don't think Zach is like a Bryce or Monty, both of whom are complete fucking psychos. But at the same time I don't think he's the amazing guy either and I do think the character gets a lot of passes for his shitty actions. 

Edited by truthaboutluv
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On 5/22/2018 at 11:52 AM, ElectricBoogaloo said:

Brenda Strong! aka Sue Ellen Mischke on Seinfeld and Mary Alice on Desperate Housewives (among other things, but those are the two I will always remember her for).

But yeah, that look she shot him was like "Uh, seriously?"

Correct me if I’m wrong (I haven’t watched a lot of Desperate Housewives) but didn’t the Mary Alice character commit suicide then narrate the episodes from beyond the grave?

I can’t decide if Tony being relegated to his own completely unrelated storyline is better or worse than being Clay’s guardian angel. He has more to do but I can’t remember the last time he interacted with someone in the main cast. And I don’t understand what was wrong last season because the show doesn’t seem to have a problem showing Tony make out with his new boyfriend this season.

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I was only half paying attention to this. I need to stop binge watching. 

I'm glad that someone called them out for being rapists, but setting fire to the grass bothered me. 

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Those 'what if' scenes with Porter and Hannah were heartbreaking. If only.

Seeing Justin's home life hurts, too. Been there. I'm glad Clay came around and is supporting him.

Sucks seeing Clay getting beat up again.

Not gonna lie, I enjoyed that Cyrus/Tyler (though, I'm scared that he's going to shoot up the school)/Clay stuff. I'm glad that the Assholes aren't letting the Bryce/jock culture thing go. It's wrong and nothing will change if everyone is allowed to forget about it or sweep it under the rug until the next tragedy.

I wonder who that Sarah girl is and why Olivia doesn't want her to testify?

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Not gonna lie, during that scene where Mr. porter imagined what he would have said had he not followed the guidelines and stoped Hannah, I cried...

I think that gave the Baker's a pretty good case, that the school guidelines were at fault for Hannah's death. Had they been better, she'd likely still be alive.

 

Clay not telling anybody about being brutalized by a bunch of jocks really annoys me. Yet it's understandable. I remember how helpless you can feel in these situations and how you feel like nobody you talk to will actually help. Sad thing is, usually that's probably even true. Nobody will help you. But in this case, with everybody on edge and a court case hanging over the school, he actually might have gotten help, had he asked for it.

So I think my annoyance might stem from the fact that he is one of the very few kids who actually could get help and maybe make a difference, something I and many others couldn't, but he's not taking it.

 

On 8.6.2018 at 5:46 AM, BaggythePanther said:

Correct me if I’m wrong (I haven’t watched a lot of Desperate Housewives) but didn’t the Mary Alice character commit suicide then narrate the episodes from beyond the grave?

Yes. But she appeared in flash-backs and now and then as an apparition (Not literally haunting the place, but when the mistery about why she killed herself was solved she looked on approvingly dressed all in white, or something like that. It's been a while.)

 

On 8.6.2018 at 5:46 AM, BaggythePanther said:

I can’t decide if Tony being relegated to his own completely unrelated storyline is better or worse than being Clay’s guardian angel. He has more to do but I can’t remember the last time he interacted with someone in the main cast. And I don’t understand what was wrong last season because the show doesn’t seem to have a problem showing Tony make out with his new boyfriend this season.

I have been missing Tony a lot this season. I wish he was more directly involved. I guess his storyline has to do with what Hannah had on him and will be important later on, but I wish the writers would have gone in a different direction.

Edited by Miles

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