'Secret Life of the American Teenager' recap: Saved by the bell-y
This week some characters lost their virginities (Henry, you dog!), some got even creepier (Ben), and some walked to class with a marching band playing behind ’em (Amy). But one thing they’ve all got in common: After next week’s season finale of Secret Life of the American Teenager, they’ll all be MIA until January (sorry guys, I mistyped last week). Indeed, with the season 1 clock ticking loudly, there was a lot of action unfolding, starting with Amy returning to her judgmental public school instead of going to the cross town Montessori for pregnant gals. (Newsflash Mr. Juergens: EVERY high school is a “slut school,” it’s called hormones!)As per usual, the poor passive girl let others make her decisions for her, while she nervously stood back and bit her lip.
Amy should know that her pregnancy — although it caused Ben to suffer a beat down at the hands of some 35-year-old blonde guy — is really old news. Old boring news compared to best frenemy Lauren making out with Ricky behind her back, Adrian’s father resurfacing, and Jack perfecting his bowl cut. Even Grace was almost interesting this episode. Or maybe that’s just because my memories are tainted by the un-Christian cheerleader she played (alongside cast members from my beloved Degrassi) in Charlie Bartlett, the most recent flick to make it off my Netflix Queue.
addCredit(“Secret Life of the American Teenager: Michael Ansell”)
The Secret Life parents had a turn in the spotlight this week as well. At first I thought that the show’s writers had never met teenagers, but as we see more of the over-21 crowd, themore it kinda feels like they’ve never hung out with adults either. Mr. Juergens is watching the girls while the Mrs. is away andrunning into
Duckie Jake Ryan Bendersomeone from her past. And while his militant “father knows best” attitude isunbearable, so is Mark Derwin’s awful acting in the role. It’s getting to the point whereGrace’s dad is almost bearable in comparison. And Adrian’s father completed the Bad Dad trifecta, coming to visit his estranged daughter that he banishedonly last episode, and suddenly yelling at her to come and be a part ofhis family. (Not to play psychiatrist for the Secret Life writing staff, but I sense an undercurrent of daddy issues.)
Anyhow, while there’s no doubt this week’s hour was one of the season’s most entertaining, it again pushed the outer limits of realism. First of all, no matter howsupportive your parent is — and no parent is that supportive ofhis or her child’s sex life — what teenage girl would casually call her father to confess thatshe made out with someone, let alone reveal that it was with her best friend’s baby daddy? You know, that same best friend that she’s been forbidden from hanging out with? Because said best friend is pregnant by the guy youmade out with? That convo would’ve been a stretch for even Grace; for Lauren, it was just insane. And how about Grace’s mom referring to Mr. Juergens as her ex? Were we supposed to think she was drunk?
And I can’t complete this recap without talking about the ridiculoussex-ish scenes we witnessed. Every time Adrian and Ricky got into asquabble, he would make a half-hearted attempt to grab her and make out.Teenagers are horny, okay, but are any of them so jaded about sex that they need to use arguing as a method of foreplay? And inreal life, Henry and Alice — especially Alice — wouldn’t be bummedout that they slept together and didn’t love each other. They would beOVERJOYED that they had a best friend who they knew was safe andtrustworthy, and would always be around to casually perform sexualexperiments with. DUH!!
Sure, we all have questions about what Ricky will end up doing withthe baby, and we’re all waiting patiently to see Ben go bonkers and runaway with Amy’s infant in a backpack or something. But I know whateveryone’s thinking:
does Sarah Palin allows her kids to watch Secret Life? What will the season 1 cliffhanger(s) involve? Anyone care to make a guess? Sound off in the comments section below!