Rebecca discovers who the villain in her fairy tale really is
Have you recovered from that final-minute shocker last episode? You know, the kiss that Rebecca’s waited for since she was 16? The kind of kiss that songs are written about and babies made from?
Rebecca hasn’t (big surprise), and neither has Josh. But it’s sent both of them spiraling in far different directions. And while at first it seems like Rebecca is going to spiral right down the same, crazy road she’s been on since she moved to West Covina, things take a surprising turn somewhere between bankruptcy and Hawaii. Is it possible that Josh’s kiss could give Rebecca a totally different kind of happy ending than she’s been wishing for? Knowing Rebecca, I’m doubtful, but after the surprising introspection and resulting revelations she’s just had, it’s going to be interesting to see where she ends up (and I don’t mean Maui).
Let’s rewind to the moments after the kiss and catch up. Rebecca is elated and, naturally, goes running straight to Paula’s for some serious debriefing. Paula, who as we know views life through Nora Ephron-colored glasses, is ecstatic. It’s all playing out just like a classic romantic comedy! Rebecca sees it as more of a fairy tale, but hey, Josh kissed her, so it’s all semantics.
Meanwhile, good Catholic boy Josh is racked with guilt and ends up at Father Brah’s house, who tells him the only way to feel better is to confess to the one who has been wronged, and perhaps they will forgive.
Josh: Dude, we’re talking about Valencia.
Father Brah: Yeah, you’re screwed.
Back at her apartment, Rebecca is trying to focus on work when Josh shows up to talk about that kiss. (Insert swelling tension and orchestra music.) He can’t stop thinking about it! He feels something for her! He’s going to tell Valencia! (Insert sound of violin strings breaking.) Although he knows it will be the end of his and Valencia’s relationship, he has to come clean. It’s okay, though, he’ll be able to recover in Maui where he’s going to watch Hector in a surf competition. Thursday. Flight 425. FYI.
Paula, telling Rebecca she needs to be the Kate Hudson in her own two and a half star movie and run through the rain in a cute dress to get her man, sees only one viable solution: Rebecca’s going to Hawaii. Of course!
Her plans of sunshine and subterfuge are thwarted, however, when all the credit cards she’s trying to use to buy her ticket are denied. Girlfriend is flat-out broke. Seems all those checks she’s been doling out to buy her way into Josh’s life have been adding up (and for those of you who guessed $10,000 as the amount she gave to the camp director, congratulations — you win a boba).
As luck would have it, a story breaks about the cover-up emails in the water case, and Rebecca is hailed a hero in the press by the mayor of West Covina (who wants to give her a key to the city). She even gets a call from her cruel mom, who tells Rebecca she’s proud of her and is sending a gift. But none of those things can stop Rebecca from facing the truth: She’s bankrupt, her Hyundai is getting repossessed, she’s resorted to selling her furniture for pennies to sexual deviants on Craigslist, and she still can’t afford to ride off with Josh in the Maui sunset.
Or can she? Because the gift her mom sends turns out to be the Garfinkel ring; you know, the family heirloom Rebecca has been coveting since forever; the gift that means she’s finally worthy in her mother’s eyes. So she does what any grateful daughter would do in this situation. She pawns it. Oh, did I not add the word “crazy” in front of the word “daughter”? My bad.
NEXT: Who are these people?
After selling the ring — and promising she’ll be back to buy it again in a couple of weeks — Rebecca gets her plane ticket and rewards herself for her shrewd problem-solving skills with a floppy sun hat and sassy cover-up. #LiveLoveMaui. But her joy is short lived when she comes upon Valencia and overhears her talking to her mom, giddy because she knows Josh is about to propose. In a shocking, almost unbelievable turn of events, Rebecca feels bad (and it’s not just the donuts from the Chinese place making her feel that way). Suddenly developing a conscience, Rebecca tells Paula that she wants to come clean with Valencia.
In other news, the role of Rebecca Bunch is now being played by A WOMAN I DO NOT RECOGNIZE.
Running to Josh and Valencia’s apartment, Rebecca arrives just in time to overhear Josh confessing to the kiss. Spying through the window, she’s witness to the ugly scene. “Do you love her?” Valencia asks. “No, God no,” Josh immediately responds. (Just a plain no would’ve been fine, thank you very much.) Valencia is hurt, but she gets it. Rebecca is smart and interesting, and she understands. Wait. What?
With a halo glowing around her head, Valencia morphs into a real life Madonna and bestows forgiveness upon Josh. He means everything to her! She’ll be waiting for him when he gets back from Maui, ready to start over! But Josh, happy and relieved to be granted absolution, isn’t going anywhere. He doesn’t deserve someone so saintly and full of goodness as Valencia.
In other news, the role of Valencia is now being played by A WOMAN I DO NOT RECOGNIZE.
Miraculously not barfing up all those Chinese donuts after witnessing this scene, Rebecca returns home, where she comes face to face with a witch, literally. After seeing her reflection in the mirror as a classic, Snow White-esque witch, Rebecca sings a sinister song, in which she realizes that she’s the villain in her own fairy tale. And sure, it’s styled to be over-the-top and exaggerated with the witch nose, bubbling brew, cackling laughter, and a caged and pleading princess, Valencia, but what emerges is a real, introspective realization of what Rebecca’s created with her madness, and much like “You Stupid Bitch” from a few episodes ago, it’s heartbreaking:
Though I insist I’m the protagonist, it’s clear my soul is up for sale.
I’m the villain in my own story, my actions have gone way too far, I told myself I was the Jasmine, but I realize now I’m Jafar.
Is the enemy what I’m meant to be?
Is being the villain my destiny?
At the key to the city ceremony, the mayor introduces her as “the most wonderful woman in West Covina.” But Rebecca, still shaken, confused, and seemingly disappointed in what she’s become, realizes her life is a contradiction and can’t take it anymore.
WANT MORE? Keep up with all the latest from last night’s television by subscribing to our newsletter. Head here for more details.
Running from the ceremony directly to flight 425 (hey, the ticket’s paid for, and Maui is just as good of a place as any to have a midlife crisis), she finds herself buckled in right next to her therapist — the one she’s been avoiding for months — and so begins a five-hour therapy session where it seems Rebecca’s finally beginning to share honestly.
Will she let her guard down and get some insight into the forces that guide her crazy behavior? I’m not sure, but this I do know this: There better be a king-sized Mai Tai waiting in Maui…for both of them.
Other bits of craziness:
I’m bi bi bi until the day I die.
It’s not a phase, I’m not confused, not indecisive; I don’t have the “gotta choose” blues.
However, White Josh shuts him down a bit when he comes on too strong and tells him he needs to relax. Later, after apparently relaxing with some casual dates, Darryl tells White Josh he’s still all about him, and WJ agrees to start over. STOP PLAYING GAMES, WHITE JOSH, AND JUST GIVE IN TO DARRYL’S AWKWARD CHARMS, ALREADY.