Wednesday, March 6, 2019

REVIEW: 'Grown-ish' - Zoey Accepts the Difficult Consequences of Her Recent Actions in 'Face the World'

Freeform's Grown-ish - Episode 2.11 "Face the World"

Zoey has to deal with the repercussions of her previous academic decisions. Zoey tries to prevent Dre and Pops from attending CalU's Parents Weekend. Meanwhile, everyone else has their own drama to face.

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 Grown-ish.

"Face the World" was written by Jenifer Rice-Genzuk Henry and directed by Eric Dean Seaton

Zoey learning about Ana and Aaron as a romantic couple shouldn't be as personally devastating as her being on academic probation and being cut off by her father. And yet, that's the precise fear that both Ana and Aaron have. Everything going on in Zoey's life is the reason why Ana keeps delaying telling her this new truth. Aaron seeing the big reaction from Zoey about her life falling apart makes him believe that it's all about him. That's not true at all. But it is yet another case where a miscommunication leads to two or more characters lashing out at each other. Zoey doesn't want Dre to visit for parents' weekend because of everything that is going on in her life. She doesn't need her father telling her that he no longer recognizes the person she has become. She is questioning that herself. She doesn't know why she cheated. She doesn't understand the choices she has been making as of late. But she also recognizes that she needs to take responsibility for her actions. And so, she does admit to cheating to the college board. She is also honest about it when Dre and Pops actually show up to figure out what's wrong with her. They have wildly different reactions to the news as well. To Pops, he feels cheating is something that needs to be done in order to get ahead in life. The only problem is getting caught. That's where Zoey failed. She didn't know how to cheat and not get caught. But Dre is horrified that his daughter would do this in the first place. He doesn't understand how she could possibly think this was okay. It makes him believe that he has enabled and coddled her too much. Now, him cutting her off completely is an extreme reaction. It's something that Dre would do because he likes to act impulsively. But it's also fascinating to watch as this entire debate is between father and daughter. It means that there will likely be even more timeline confusion between Grown-ish and Black-ish. Bow probably has a reaction to all of this as well. She may not be able to condone the actions of either her husband or daughter. And yet, that perspective may not be seen because Grown-ish is taking a break until June while Black-ish will continue airing new episodes this spring. This is a conflict that should inform those characters on the parent show too. But there's no understanding that it actually will. It is just suppose to make Zoey spiral even further. She doesn't understand how everything fell apart so quickly for her. That has been her trajectory this season. She has really been struggling. She has been making constant mistakes. She has had some major victories here and there. But even that is undone here with Jazz's father hacking into her Instagram account and deleting all of her pictures. As such, there is no longer any credit given as to the work she did to boost the image for the twins. Sure, all of that may eventually lead to Doug and Jazz getting back together. They are actually talking and apologizing for once. That's an important first step. But again, so much of this episode also pivots around Zoey and the uncertainty in her life. She isn't really allowed to have a reaction to learning about Ana and Aaron. Instead, the action cuts off just as all of these new details are thrown at her. Plus, she isn't even the only character in turmoil. Nomi comes out to her parents and is then faced with the reality that her dynamic with Professor Hewson can never develop into something more because she could lose her job as a result of it. That too is just as devastating as everything happening with Zoey - even though Dre and Pops have a much bigger reaction to Luca than is probably necessary.