Some boundaries should be respected

By Ruth Kinane
October 26, 2016 at 04:09 AM EDT
Jack Rowand/The CW

It really might be the end of the world for Evie — insofar as Xavier is her world and Jenna Dewan Tatum just came crashing into his arms like a hot, fiery, catastrophic comet. But we’ll get to that later.

Xavier explains to Evie over lunch that the key to his philosophy is sucking the marrow out of life while he can. He demonstrates by literally sucking the marrow out of a bone. It may be on his list, but it’s sure as heck not on Evie’s — she’s saying “no to marrow.” Very clever. Anyway, after a discussion about the merits of bone marrow, Xavier spills coffee on himself, promptly strips off his clothing and leaps into a fountain to prevent burning. Evie’s horrified… They’re in public! But none of the passersby care too much, seeing as Xavier’s in great shape. Still, Evie waxes on about how she could never do such a thing for fear of arrest or water-based parasites. Ready for another bout of Xavier wisdom? Here it goes: “You’re going to miss out on some pretty great stuff in life if you don’t push those boundaries every once in a while.” And now we get to spend the rest of the episode waiting for Evie to realize he’s right.

First, though, let’s head back to Cybermart. Another week, another customer service/shipping problem designed to help Evie learn something about herself and shake some inhibition or another. This week she’s worried she’s uptight, and Kareema agrees: Evie is all about limits. Elsewhere at the warehouse, there’s a new hot Russian dude on the team, and a quick check-in on operation “Hanky Panky” reveals Hank is still somewhat terrified of Deirdre and the effect she has on his ears.

Yup, Xavier’s all about “ethical non-monogamy” — a.k.a. he’s sleeping with other girls and can’t see any reason why this should upset Evie. Come on, Evie, the world’s ending. A guy’s got to live. What a convenient excuse, X-ie (it’s Tuesday’s nickname for him). Evie insists he’s just trying to have his cake and eat it too, but Xavier can’t see how that’s a problem — everyone likes cake. And there he goes again, making crazy things seem logical. The conversation gets heated and somehow concludes with Xavier revealing a threesome with Amy Brenneman, star of Judging Amy, is on his list. Evie has some thinking to do before she sacrifices another belief she holds firm, purely because it doesn’t fit with one of Xavier’s theories.

The next day, or maybe later that day (the girl seems to take a lot of breaks) at work, Evie’s making a concerted effort to push past her limits…by cutting holes in her shirt. Deirdre interrupts for some advice about Hank, and Evie tells her to respect his boundaries and be patient. Why can’t she tell X-ie to do the same thing?

NEXT: Naked yoga and sex with Amy Brenneman

Meanwhile, Xavier’s been at naked yoga with Tuesday and they’re sipping on some rare $500-a-glass Scotch as a post-workout refreshment. (I’m assuming it’s on Xavier’s doesn’t-have-to-be-paid-until-after-the-world-ends credit card). Xavier checks off no. 427 on his “apocalist.” Tuesday invites him to a Blood Moon party — featuring hot tubs and hot girls — that only happens once every 17 years. When Xavier doesn’t immediately commit, she accuses him of being sprung on Evie and changing his stripes, but Xavier deflects the accusation by ignoring Evie’s texts and hooking up with Tuesday in the coat-check closet. Meanwhile, in a bid to break down some boundaries (or just live a like a 21-year-old) Evie takes shots and dances “her face off” at a club with Kareema.

Cut to the next morning at work, where Evie’s so hungover she’s throwing up in the bathroom. But she’s proud of it — it makes her badass. Kareema tells her she’s added some dating apps to her phone and then casually suggests a threesome as a way for Evie to “broaden her horizons,” but still be with Xavier.

Xavier and Evie head home to have sex while Judging Amy plays in the background. Apparently, that’s close enough to the real thing for Xavier to cross it off his apocalist. When the show ends, Evie’s phone is blowing up with messages from prospective suitors on numerous dating apps. Poor, sweet, naive Evie is all “People are so nice” and “I didn’t think this could be so exciting.” She’ll learn. Xavier’s pretending to be cool with it, but he’s clearly a little miffed when she matches with new Hot Russian Dude From Work.

With some encouragement from Kareema, Evie decides to forget about her familiarity with corporate’s “No Dating Coworkers” policy and accept a date with Hot Russian Dude From Work, but she brings Kareema along to double with his brother. Date night turns out to be watching some wrestling, and before long, the girls wind up mud-wrestling each other. Remember, Evie has no boundaries now — so anything’s possible. Well, maybe not anything. At the end of the night, the Russian brothers ask the girls if they’re interested in the fivesome. The fifth member of this party, you ask? Their pet python. And no, that’s not a euphemism. Evie declines, though Kareema does pause to consider the offer.

NEXT: Sweet Tea and Xavier join forces

At yet another bar, Xavier is drinking and thinking about his pledge for ethical non-monogamy when who should sit down next to him (no, not Amy Brenneman) but Sweet Tea. Since he published an article and landed himself on the cover of a tech magazine (winning himself the new nickname “T ‘Rrific” from Hank), Sweet Tea’s been trying to use his fame to help him woo the ladies, to little avail. Forget the ladies, though, Xavier’s impressed. He’s a huge fan of Sweet Tea and is familiar with his earlier work. He “can’t fathom why chicks don’t dig that.” He tells Sweat Tea not to worry about it, he shouldn’t get too attached to one “bird” anyway, since he’s realizing you can’t possess another person. Indeed, the “bird he adores” is out with another guy as they speak, free to suck the marrow out of any bone she wishes. With that in mind — and no idea they have a friend in common — the guys head to the Blood Moon party together.

After some shirtless dancing to tribal music, Tuesday pounces on Xavier and invites him to have a threesome with her and her friend Calliope (or a foursome, if Sweet Tea wants to get involved). Things are getting steamy in the hot tub when Xavier realizes that despite being with two hot women and his favorite tech writer of all time, he’s only thinking about Evie. He leaves to find her with Sweet Tea in pursuit. When they catch up with Evie, the guys realize (at the same time) that Sweet Tea’s ex is Xavier’s current “bird.” Sweet Tea’s pissed; he would never have spent this “admittedly awesome night” with Xavier if he’d known. However, his anger serves to embolden him and he ends up making out with a girl at the bar. Xavier is less successful: When he tries to explain to Evie he left the other girls to be with her, she stands up to him and doesn’t let him dictate her every action for once.

Back at Cybermart the next morning, Evie solves the problem between the shipping and fulfillment departments, in the process learning taking initiative isn’t so bad — some boundaries should be broken. And so we’re back to Xavier’s place, to end the episode where we always do, where he’s just added “Tell Evie how I really feel, screw non-monogamy” to his list. But before he can do just that, Evie — amped up from deciding she’s no longer going to worry about the consequences of her actions — tells Xavier she’s grateful he made her forgo her. It made her realize she’s never dated casually, and it’s something she should try before the world ends. He goes along with it, pretending he agrees, but in a flashback to the coat-check closet we see that he and Tuesday never actually had sex. He knew he only wanted to be with one person: Evie.

But it’s too late. Evie is enjoying the leftover bone marrow (literally) and is ready to suck all the opportunity out of life (not so literally). And suddenly, Xavier’s not so enamored with his whole “no boundaries” philosophy anymore.

What will Evie learn next week? Hopefully that dating apps are not full of people being “so nice.”

Episode grade: B