On ''The Hills,'' Lauren's cleaner and soberer ex Jason shows up but doesn't break her one-date curse; meanwhile, Heidi betrays another friend

By Erin E. Stevenson
September 11, 2007 at 04:00 AM EDT
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”The Hills”: Lauren and Jason’s reunion

The Hills weren’t as alive this week as they were last episode with Spencer’s bro breakup and Justin Bobby’s mutterings on love. (If some publishing house doesn’t hire Justin to write a book on dating, then someone’s missing out big time. He’s profound, in a Forrest Gump way.) But groundwork seemed to be laid for future blowups and breakdowns. (By the way, I’m filling in this week for your regular Hills Watcher, Lindsay, but I’ve been with L.C. from the beginning, so I hope I’m able to do everybody justice.) Now to this week’s show.

They made us wait until the very end for the Lauren-Jason reunion, but I’ll be kind and not leave you hanging: How anticlimactic! But yet painfully genuine and awkward. Kudos to Lauren for being so honest: ”I had to make a clean break from you.” If she were more like Audrina, she would have ridden off into the sunset with him — just as Audrina had done moments earlier with good ol’ J. Bobby after a walk on the beach. (She hadn’t returned his calls for one whole week. Apparently he never apologizes, so Audrina was impressed. But she decided they’d just be friends, to which Lauren, and the rest of us, basically said, ”Yeah, right,” and she ended up on the beach with him. By the way, did anyone else notice her plumber’s crack on the back of J. Bob’s motorbike? Come on, Audrina, show some class. You’ve got a fine ass, but let’s leave something to the imagination, ‘kay?)

Anyway, both couple’s scenes were emotionally accented with a pop song about transitory love and finding your soul mate. (Any of you readers know what the song is? It couldn’t have been more perfect). Lauren and Jason met up for coffee and a little heart-to-heart. I was left wondering what’s motivating him to reconnect. Is it part of his rehab — making amends to the people he’s wronged? He at least admitted to having been ”out of control” and to having ”bad habits.” Now he seemed calm, coherent, and cleaned up. Still, Lo and Whitney, the show’s most stabilizing presences, were both shocked to hear of his return, as well they should be. When will everyone else realize these two know what they’re talking about?

Meanwhile, Lauren and crew did come to some stunning and mature conclusions about guys this week. Too bad they’ll spend at least the next five years of their lives ignoring what they know to be true:

1. According to Lauren, as soon as you stop thinking about bad guys, they can sense it, like radar, and then they call.

2. Not everyone’s going to be your Prince Charming, said Whitney, and there are no perfect guys, noted Audrina. Good thing, since Lauren declared she liked ”imperfection.” And, boy, does she! Very imperfect Jason left the poor girl with a one-date curse. (She hasn’t gone on more than one date with anyone since breaking up with Jason. Going back to Brody’s condo apparently doesn’t count.)

3. Never date your trainer. I was glad to see these waifs in the gym, quite frankly. Of course, they looked great, were perfectly accessorized, and didn’t break much of a sweat. Audrina and Lauren ended up going out with their trainer, Jarett, and his friend/colleague, Derek, who believes thrift store and vintage is the same thing. He bragged to Lauren about the nine 40-cent shirts that he bought from a thrift store that he’s seen in L.A. ”vintage” stores for, like, $40 each. That’s quite a loser move: boasting to a Teen Vogue employee about your 40-cent, old and used T-shirt from a college you didn’t attend. Doesn’t really have the cachet of, say, a Clash concert shirt. Lauren said he talked about himself the entire evening. Needless to say, her one-date curse remained unbroken.

COMING UP: More evil Heidi

I’ve saved the best/worst of the episode for last: Heidi continued to burn all her friendship bridges. I guess when you’ve lost your best friend and are stuck with a Spencer, you’ve got to focus on something better. Hearing from her colleague — and friend — Elodie that she planned to apply for an events-director job at Bolthouse, Heidi went for the job herself, even though Elodie has clearly worked there longer. Brent Bolthouse himself seemed a little shocked when Heidi threw her hat in the ring, saying it would be a much bigger position than the one she has, but — spoiler alert! — she got the job!! Elodie came in and offered perfectly weak congratulations: ”Good for you!” (Which has always sounded totally insincere to me, personally. It’s like you’re saying, ”We never expected you to get that far.”) Anyway, Elodie’s icy stares and pained half smile were totally appropriate and worth watching again and again. Even better, it seems from the coming attractions that Heidi will have trouble handling her new responsibilities and Elodie will be there to witness it. I can’t wait!

Until then, let’s discuss: Why is Jason back? Is he out for camera time (which just happens to be coinciding with his kickin’ it on Celebrity Rap Superstar), or is he truly sorry? Who’s your favorite level-headed sage: Whitney or Lo? And will Heidi and Spencer ever grow up and realize the error of their ways?

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