Tuesday, February 19, 2019

REVIEW: 'Good Trouble' - Mariana Gets Into Trouble After Her Night Out with a Couple in 'Swipe Right'

Freeform's Good Trouble - Episode 1.07 "Swipe Right"

Mariana, Davia, Malika and Alice set up dates for each other using a popular dating app, to varying degrees of success. Meanwhile, Callie makes a big decision regarding her relationship with Gael.

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of Freeform's Good Trouble.

"Swipe Right" was written by Ally Musika and directed by Troian Bellisario

Everyone is thinking about sex at the Coterie. That's the entire premise of this hour. Everyone is going out in the hopes of getting lucky. It's the show being aware of just how much people in their 20s prioritize sex when it comes to dating. All of the women are striving for healthy sexual connections in order to know if there is something more there with a guy. Callie and Gael's connection has been the overwhelming romantic focus of the series so far. However, this episode suggests that it may not be healthy for either of them. That shows the potential perils of this kind of thinking for these characters. Great sex doesn't mean the relationship is working or is healthy. Callie and Gael have no problem pleasing each other in that way. However, there is the yearning for more while being swallowed whole by the pressures of outside opportunities. Callie needs to pass the bar and can't get distracted. She only succeeds with her practice test after she tells Gael that they need to stop. That inspires him as well with his art. All of this could come across as simple melodrama though and not something that is destined to last for very long. The show has made the audience invest in the two of them as a couple. As such, it would be awkward if all of that buildup led to this split in which Callie chose her career and Gael chose to spend more time building a meaningful connection with Bryan - who is ready for it as well. Meanwhile, the other characters in the ensemble are still just exploring the basic details of who they are. It's clear that some of them have something more important on their minds than allowing sex to dictate their personal relationships. Malika understands the perception that women of color have in the dating scene. She is proud of who she is. She is a big personality who knows exactly what she wants. She has simply become too accustomed to the men she wants rejecting her because of the color of her skin and their own internalized bias. That's what fuels her interaction with the man she eventually sleeps with. Of course, all of this is difficult to gauge just how many of these connections will have lasting actions across the remainder of the season and which are one-off things. With Callie and Malika, they seem like personal decisions that will carry on moving forward. The same also goes to Alice who is still struggling with all of her personal dilemmas with Sumi. She still has feelings for her ex-girlfriend who is getting married. She will still drop everything in order to support her and get disappointed time and time again. She deserves to be happy. She still gets that second date though. That's so uplifting and rewarding. But she also has to commit to it fully and she may be unable to do that because of her lingering feelings about Sumi. And finally, Mariana has a crazy and wild night where she starts with one guy she hates and ends up having a threesome with a couple. It's something that all three enjoy and encourage. But the show also expects the audience to see it all ending in disaster because it opens with that image of Mariana being chased out of the house by the girlfriend of the man she slept with. She should feel bad about not following the rules of this kind of interaction. However, the couple didn't really specify them either. So, it seems like they are nothing more than broad, one-note characters who will probably never be seen again. The same goes for Davia's man who helps her get back at her married boyfriend for lying to her about where he is.