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September 2, 2015

Review: 'Life Unexpected' - 'Bong Intercepted'

by Hemal Jhaveri, posted Feb 9th 2010 2:15AM
Life Unexpected (S01E04) I am so excited for the return of the infamous bong lamp, but wow, does it cause some major trouble. Last week, we saw Lux sell Baze's pride and joy to help cover his bar rent. Two weeks ago, the offending lamp was also one of the reasons Baze was denied full custody of Lux. This week, it's the reason she gets suspended from her fancy-pants public school. Stupid lamp, can't do anything right.

We're ratcheting up the drama here this week. Lux's illusions of family life crumble a bit more as she and Cate, in the grand traditions of mothers and daughters everywhere, clash something awful.

There were a lot of touching moments this week. First, Cate and Baze receive a copy of Lux's case file, that includes a sweet letter she wrote to Santa when she was eight years old, asking for a Mom and Dad for Christmas. It's so adorable it makes you want to vomit. After that, we got Cate sticking up for Lux to her old high school principal, rightfully pointing out that Lux made a simple mistake and shouldn't be punished so harshly for it.

In fact, there were a lot of "touching moments" during this episode and honestly, most of them didn't work. The Santa letter was cute but could have been toned down a bit. There was no subtlety in those scenes, just an obvious yanking of the heartstrings that made the whole thing a bit cheap.

I was worried that this show had the potential of getting too sappy, and I fear we are knee deep in that territory. What do you think readers? Did the tone of this episode work for you? It seemed like every other scene was a heartfelt moment and really, how many of those can you have? By the time Cate and Lux had their showdown in the parking lot, I was rolling my eyes. Conflict, I can appreciate, but the overplayed dramatics bring the show down without adding any depth or intrigue.

Despite bong lamp shenanigans and a scene where Ryan and Cate inexplicably make out in a fitting room, there was too much emotion and very little plot to tether the episode. There was one bright spot, though: Lux's brazen eff-you to Cate at Baze's bar, where, after their epic fight, she outed Ryan and Cate's relationship to radio listeners during the Drink-a-Date. It was pretty great. I felt a little thrill seeing Lux lash out like that. It wasn't what a mature person would do but exactly what a pissed off 16-year-old might. As an added bonus, Cate and Ryan don't have to worry about hiding their relationship anymore, which was a pretty lame plot device anyway.

Another complaint about this episode? Not enough Baze! He and Lux had a small moment, when he advised her to go back to Cate's, but there's still uneven development of his character. As always, Baze's friends are welcome comic relief, and one day I will remember both their names.

So, what do you guys want to see more of next week? A lot less crying and a bit more funny on my part.

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I must just be a big sap because I loved this episode.
I've actually liked all of them so far. Not a perfect show by any means, but very enjoyable.

February 10 2010 at 12:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I agree that it wasn't as good as other episodes and that we need more Baze. We could do with less of Cate and Ryan making out, he gets on my nerves. But with all that being said it was still good. Great to see that Baze paid her back, and I'm interested to see how Lux will adjust in school now that all her lies came out. She seems creative so it shouldn't be a problem. Baze's friends are Math and Jaime I think.

February 09 2010 at 11:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

You know, I don't care if it's sappy. I'm really enjoying this show the way it is. I don't analysis..just ENJOY.

I think we need more enjoyable moments and less critics, reviews, recaps...

February 09 2010 at 10:12 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The only scene that I believed was awful, was when Ryan and Kate was on stage at the Drink a Date Event. Just didn't fit well, poorly acted and forced..
I loved the scene when they were all at Kate's house and Lux said something smart (not sure what) and Kate looked at Lux, like all mothers do when their kids speak out of turn and Lux quickly closed her mouth....great moment.
I do enjoy the evolution of Baze. He hasn't been drunk since the second episode and Lux is forcing him to grow up.

Just like another fan, not sure why I love this show but I just do. I have seen every eposide at least 3 times. Can watch it, over and over again.

February 09 2010 at 9:38 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I have to disagree about the conversation between Lux and Math being inappropriate. I didn't get the impression that it took place at a park. I got the impression that it took place on the school campus. Math and Baze are roommates. I feel it is natural for Lux and Math to develop a close bond. He was there when Lux revealed herself to Baze. He was there for her birthday. To me, Math is taking on the part of Godfather. I see a close bond developing between the to of them.

February 09 2010 at 8:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Anne's comment

Also I believe Math is a teacher at the school.

February 09 2010 at 10:34 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'm not sure what it is about this show, but I really like it, and look forward to it every week.

Baze's friend - whose name I also forgot to get - his advice always seems on the money. I'm just glad that someone finally listened to him. Question: How did he know that Lux was there in that park? Did it feel inappropriate that he was talking to her alone in the park... it doesn't seem that the two characters have interacted enough for this scene to be plausible.

February 09 2010 at 3:52 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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