Whenever I think about having kids, I think about having to deal with a teenager. And despite the fact that I like to think that I was a highly tolerable, unusually mature teen, I realize that I was probably also extremely annoying. And sure, I lied to my parents from time to time. But when I think about my kids, I fear that they’ll become the kind of stereotypical teen that defines this show. Not only do these kids lie to their parents, but they do things like drop out of school, make fake IDs, and occasionally accidentally shoot someone. Thankfully, it works in order to create drama. (Personally, however, it’s stopping me from having kids anytime soon.)
The Teenage World
After Lori finds Carter at her job, she informs Carter that she’s worried about Ben. Why? Because Lori’s turned into “that parent.” You know, the one who snoops through her son’s things and finds 100 IDs, flash drives, and more than $7,000 in cash.
With that in mind, Carter tries to reach out to Ben, but he’s not so much a fan of the tight-knit brother-sister dynamic. In fact, he much prefers the “I’ll call you when I need you” relationship he’s established with Taylor. And to prove it, he offers Taylor a fake ID free of charge while continuing to ignore Carter’s phone calls. His biggest mistake, however, is ignoring Carter’s phone call in front of Carter. So obviously, she gets in her car and follows his taxi.
The most realistic thing about this entire situation is the fact that Carter is horrible at tailing anyone. The most unrealistic thing is that Ben doesn’t notice he’s being followed when Carter all but causes a huge wreck in the middle of an intersection. Regardless, she follows the cab into what I shall call Crack Central City, where she’s offered drugs by a sketchy stranger before she witnesses Ben yelling at a potential girlfriend and paying a man a lot of money. And of course, Ben sees Carter.
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While all of this is happening, Taylor is trying to figure out how to help Gabe after he quits the track team. (And you know what? If he doesn’t “run on command,” then he really should’ve quit earlier. That’s kind of all track stars do.)
Thanks to some help from Bird, Taylor comes up with the genius plan for “wise” Max and Gabe to enjoy a guys’ night. Spoiler: It goes well … until it doesn’t. What was a pleasant night of bro bonding quickly goes wrong when Taylor texts Max asking for an update on how Gabe is doing. So really, Taylor needs to apply some of the hand-off approach she uses with Ben to Gabe. (But Max’s complexion was on point, so at least there’s that.)
Luckily, Max did get to share one bit of wisdom with Gabe before the night ended: In regard to Gabe choking and dying alone, Max told him, “Don’t forget to chew.” Words to live by, am I right?
NEXT: Gone boy
Upset with the whole Ben situation, Carter stops by the bar to have a drink with Jared, who somehow manages to sum her up with one (long) sentence: “You’re smart, and you’re cute, and you have a ton of baggage, but you don’t let it ruin you.” How long has Jared known her at this point? I’m thinking he’s the wise one on this show. (No offense, Max. I’ll take your hair wisdom any day.)
From the bar, Carter heads home, where Ben has decided to accept Taylor’s invitation and come to dinner. After some father-son bonding, Carter informs Ben about Lori going through his things, which doesn’t go over well. However, it doesn’t go over nearly as poorly as when Carter accuses Ben of stealing David’s watch. To be fair, Grant did see Ben put it in his pocket. How was he supposed to know he took it back out?
But before Ben storms out, Elizabeth gets the chance to tell him that he’s welcome to live with them, which he responds to by accusing her of wanting to get back at Lori by stealing a kid from her. Yeah, by episode’s end, Ben has run away and no one knows where he is. My best guess? Check Crack Central City. (How much do we love that Lori’s already lost her kid?)
The Adult World
With the publisher talking about a Christmas release for David’s book — and absolutely no one questioning how he wrote it so quickly — Elizabeth is concerned that now’s not the best time for David to be gone on a book tour for two to three months. But as David sees it, it’s an opportunity to make some money and make life easier for everyone … Lori and Ben included.
Over dinner, Ben and David sort of make plans to maybe potentially go camping together one day before Ben storms out. David then makes the grave mistake of telling Liz that things are going to be okay because “God knows we deserve a break.” Yeah, you just jinxed yourself, buddy. Let’s hope you don’t have another secret kid out there.
What did you all think of the episode? Hit the comments with your thoughts or find me on Twitter @samhighfill.