Monday, July 28, 2014

REVIEW: 'Switched at Birth' - Bay, Tank, Daphne and Travis Ponder Their Futures in 'It Isn't What You Think'

ABC Family's Switched at Birth - Episode 3.18 "It Isn't What You Think"

Bay offers to be moral support for Tank as he meets his father for dinner, but finds she may have bitten off more than she can chew. Toby stirs things up with Lily, but a conflict with Sharee raises unwanted confrontation. Daphne and Travis make life-changing decisions when they find out their admission results from Gallaudet University.

Daphne has just taken such a sharp turn into self-destruction. She's mad at Regina. And yet, she's willing to work on that relationship but she keeps running into her mom in compromising position. First, she meets Wes - in their house! - and he doesn't know she's deaf. Then, she spots her shaking hands with Chip Coto. Daphne has always stood up for what she's believed in. But this latest development takes that characteristic and alters it into acting out and terrible decision making. She was truly remorseful for doing cocaine last week. But now, she enjoys spending time with Nacho. You know the guy she was fighting against in the premiere. He's the person who's supporting her newfound mean streak. What's most troublesome, however, is that she is on probation. And she doesn't care about that one bit. She got into Gallaudet University and isn't happy at all. She doesn't understand how everyone else can just be living their lives after Angelo's death. She's being reckless and that could severely effect her future. The fact that she doesn't see that shows just how fall she has fallen from the Daphne we used to know.

Like Daphne, Bay is also struggling. But she's still internalizing a lot of her emotions. She doesn't know how to react to the knowledge that brain aneurysms may be hereditary in Angelo's family. She tries to deflect that by mending her friendship with Tank. Sure, it's a situation that awkwardly falls into her lap as Toby didn't have time to mention Tank moved in with him and Bay walks in to that surprise. That was clunky. But those two are really great as friends. I've always supported that. So for the show to be getting back to that mindset is enjoyable. Too bad it had to come during a really rough time in both of their lives. They both have things that they need to talk about and decisions to make. They are important and life-changing decisions and they simply don't have the world-weariness around them to know how to react or talk about them. So, the dinner with Tank's father - played by Jerry aka Parks and Recreation's Jim O'Heir - goes terribly. And yet, both are happy because they have each other again and they've been able to talk about the things happening in their lives.

The girls simply aren't thinking about college right now because of the tragedy that has uprooted their lives. Potentially dying from an aneurysm is more important than figuring stuff out about college. And yet, it's that time of year when the kids start hearing back from their potential prospects. Emmett gets into Gallaudet as well but Travis isn't so lucky. It's not his fault at all. There just seemed to be more applicants this year which is unfortunate because Travis needs more good stuff in his life right now. So, he's left questioning what direction his life should take next. He loves his life at Carlton and with the Bledsoes but his rejection also stirs up the old feelings of him being a burden yet again. Melody is fighting for him and the other deaf kids at Carlton who didn't get into Gallaudet. But Travis also wants to start thinking about himself and what is the best direction to take in life. A job presents itself - and it really does feel forced upon him. He has to choose between school or a full time job with benefits. That choice seems a little farfetched. I'm sure the employer would have to interview Travis before offering him the job and then Travis could tell his side of the story and explain he can't start for a few more weeks. But it's that dilemma that we are left with. It seems like all of the teenagers' lives are in turmoil right now. I'm intrigued to see how the chips fall next.

Some more thoughts:
  • "It Isn't What You Think" was written by Henry Robles & J.R. Phillips and directed by Ron Lagomarsino.
  • Well, Toby and Lily have already slept together. That's a nice progression of events. I love that she stands up for herself as well. Plus, it's about time someone mentions the small hint of romantic undertone happening in the Toby-Sharee relationship.
  • Is Daphne just blowing off work at the clinic? I thought she got a promotion. What's happening there?
  • Kathryn and John want to give Daphne a little more time before they talk to her. No! They need to do that now.
  • Considering Bay went to dinner with Tank, I'm surprised by how little we got concerning Emmett's reaction.
  • Hmmm, a satellite program for Gallaudet in Kansas City? Perhaps, that will be how the show keeps all of these characters in the same town next year.