The Arrangement recap: 'Sins'
Terence kicks things off this week with a presentation at the Institute, raising funds for the First Lives Initiative. I perk up whenever I hear “First Lives Initiative” because it kinda sounds like “First Wives Club,” but don’t get your hopes up; this is not a Goldie Hawn romp. This is Terry’s youth intervention program, which he promises will “foster new lives that are virtually free of non-productives.” So if a kid who wants to be part of this program seems like a “non-productive,” IHM will make sure that kid… ceases to exits?
Sounds terrifying, but also par for the course for this thinly veiled portrayal of Scientology and David Miscavige. (This recapper’s hot take? Scientology suuuuuuucks.) But Terry has lost his mojo. Something’s missing, and that something is clearly his unofficial spokesman, Kyle West.
Kyle is hard at work on set for The Kill Plan with his leading lady, Amelia Briggs. When a boom operator asks Amelia to make some noise so he can test sound levels, she treats the crew to a fake orgasm while making intense eye contact with Kyle. Congratulations, Amelia! You are this week’s Horniest Character.
But, as Megan will come to learn, this Amelia thing is a lot more complicated than a quick recreation of the When Harry Met Sally diner scene. When Megan is recognized by a barista at a coffee shop that also sells copies of Life and Stars magazine, she reads about Kyle’s supposed real-life romance with Amelia. Megan is thrown by this headline (and I am thrown by the bandanna she is wearing in this scene).
Kyle clears things up by taking Megan to visit his publicist, who explains the concept of stealth marketing: They’ve mapped out an entire love triangle story line for Kyle, Megan, and Amelia. This narrative will carry them through to the premiere of The Kill Plan… but will ultimately resolve in a happy ending for Kygan. Now Megan is really thrown: There’s a fictional element to this relationship that began with a secret marriage contract? WTF?!
Later that day, Kyle makes up for the whole thing with an elaborate gesture. He and Megan jump on his motorcycle and speed down the PCH to grab dinner at Nobu, but their plan goes awry when Kyle pulls over and announces that “there’s a shimmy in the front fork” of his bike. While they wait for Kyle’s assistant Zach (whose real name, may I remind you, is literally “Kyle Toy”), they go for a walk on the beach, where they happen upon a lush cabana. Kyle set the whole thing up!
But the biggest surprise is yet to come: Kyle gets down on one knee and presents Megan with a ring and a heartfelt proposal (albeit a generic one: “I’ve waited my entire life to love someone the way I love you,” etc.). Megan is brought to tears: This marriage contract includes an engagement?! She says yes, yes, a thousand times yes, and they kiss, more in love than ever before.
E! News Correspondents Jason Kennedy and Zuri Hall are quick to announce the Kygan engagement on their show. I’ve gotta say, almost every time a movie or TV show uses this device (entertainment journalists playing themselves to help with exposition), I’m genuinely impressed by their believability. And Jason and Zuri are no exception! It’s almost like the stories they report in real life are kind of fake! It’s almost like they are actors themselves. The hot takes just keep on coming this week, you guys.
Deann visits Kyle on set to ask if he and Megan would like to double date with her and Terry. They’ll celebrate the engagement, they’ll rekindle the Kyle/Terry bromance, and hey, maybe they’ll be spotted and drum up a little buzz for IHM while they’re at it! But Kyle says no way. He’s still super pissed at Terence for that time he pimped him out to a horny ladycop. So if Deann and Terence (Deance?) want a big reconciliation with Kyle, they’re gonna need a better plan.
At least one element of that plan seems to involve Megan’s best friend Shaun, who is already knee deep in IHM, providing legal services for the First Life Initiative. Terry provides Shaun with a big fat check – much bigger and fatter than she was expecting – and asks her to stay on as his in-house counsel. (It seemed like this already happened last week, but apparently she was only on board for one project. Now she’s on board for all of them!)
When Megan visits Kyle on set, Amelia congratulates her on the engagement by asking what she’s promoting. Megan is, again, shocked by the idea that anyone could perceive her relationship as a publicity stunt. She’s engaged for real, and she’s got the rock to prove it! But Amelia plants a seed of doubt, and she is clearly disappointed that her own fake relationship with Kyle didn’t turn into a real one.
Amelia is so disappointed, in fact, that she mixes booze with pills and checks into Cedars Sinai for “exhaustion.” Kyle and Megan discuss Amelia’s troubles over dinner, and Megan eventually convinces Kyle to step outside and call to check on her. While he’s gone, a creepy stranger with a Canadian accent slips over to the table.
This guy quickly brings Megan, and us, up to speed: Six years ago, Megan killed her stepbrother Evan for molesting her when they were kids. This guy took the blame, and now he wants $5 million within 24 hours or he goes public with the truth. It’s a lot of info, but Megan gets the point: Killing someone and then covering it up is totally a violation of her marriage contract. She’s in trouble, and she’s shook!
The next morning, Megan meets Shaun at the Malibu Pier (not to brag, but I used to be a waiter there!) to explain the situation and ask for her legal help. She can’t tell Kyle, and she’s gotta make this go away. Shaun suggests that she talk to Terence and tells Megan she’s now working for him. Megan flips out: Yes, they had this exact conversation last week, and she was upset about it then, too. But now it’s like, full time! She can’t trust anyone!
Or maybe she can. She returns home to find Kyle and confesses to the whole thing. Even though killing Evan was self-defense and totally justified, Kyle is still like, “Whoa.” After all, this was (quite literally) not part of the deal, and it could be really bad for his career, which is apparently everyone’s biggest concern. (Although I’m doing a quick mental inventory of all the celebrities who have killed people while driving and texting, and they’re mostly doing fine, so Kyle could probably get through this, no?)
Once he gets past the initial shock, Kyle assures Megan that he loves her, doesn’t want to lose her, and that he’ll take care of it. He’s gotta move some things around, but he’ll make sure the bad guy gets his $5 million. So, pretty much… problem solved?
But then, for whatever reason, Megan goes searching for other solutions. She asks her agent Leslie if she can get an advance on her marriage contract, but their conversation is interrupted by a phone call from Terence, putting Megan on blast for the whole thing. He knows! He’s everywhere! Megan backs away from Leslie, saying, “No one can help me,” and rushing back home.
Megan writes a goodbye note to Kyle, saying she has no other choice but to run away. (But, um, you do have another choice. He just told you he was gonna pay this guy off, and it’s not like he can’t afford it. Get that money, girl!) And before Megan can sign the note and jump in her Maserati, Deann walks in, announcing that “everything’s gonna be okay” while someone grabs Megan from behind and throws a bag over her head.
While Deance hangs out at home, hoping they did the right thing, and while Kyle presumably wires that now-irrelevant $5 million over to the blackmailer, Megan is delivered via the back of a van to an IHM compound way out in the mountains. Her old pal Nina greets her in a golf cart.
She’s not the undercover-journalist-posing-as-an-IHM-recruit Megan believed her to be. Nope, she pulled the old “I’m a senior IHM member posing as an undercover journalist posing as an IHM recruit” on her. “That was a test,” Nina tells her. “Which you passed.” But now, Megan is going to take a much more difficult test at “a facility for individual transformation.” Here’s hoping she meets Shelly Miscavige there, and that next week, in our big season finale, Leah Remini shows up just in time to rescue Megan, and Shelly… and the rest of us.