Thursday, May 12, 2022

REVIEW: 'Girls5Eva' - Summer Feels Pressured to Live Up to Her Parents' Expectations in 'Can't Wait 2 Wait'

Peacock's Girls5Eva - Episode 2.04 "Can't Wait 2 Wait"

Summer's parents urge her to stay chaste until she finds "The Two." Dawn gets a little too close to Ray during a late night at the studio. Wickie dates a celebrity whom she cannot name due to an NDA.

"Can't Wait 2 Wait" was written by Lauren Gurganous and directed by LP

Summer has gotten divorced. She now has the freedom to explore what she wants from life. With Kev, she was always yearning for more. And yet, she felt a constant commitment to him. It came across as an unfair balance because the perception was that he was free to do whatever he wanted. As such, it was enriching when the possibility presented itself for Girls5Eva to reunite. In doing so, Summer got more confidence to take a hard look at her life. She could no longer ignore the troubling warning signs. She couldn't just right them off as being acceptable. She deserved more than good enough. Happiness is possible for her. She's on a journey of self-exploration. She has always been defined as the religious one of the group. She has a message that has support across the country. That means she must always uphold those ideals. Years ago, she was branded as the virgin. She had to talk about the necessity of waiting to have sex until marriage. She wore a promise ring. It was very much a conversation of the time. It meant something to Summer. She waited with Kev. Their marriage was satisfying in some ways. They drifted apart over the years. And now, Summer has the opportunity to explore different relationships. She is still in the public eye. People still feel entitled to their perceptions of her. It's more than just her fans though. They want to dictate her as the villain in the divorce. Kev was betrayed. He deserves sympathy. Summer should just be treated with anger and vitriol. She isn't deserving of anything more. That's made her involvement in the group more difficult because she no longer has the solid and stable social media following who will watch her do anything. Her friendships haven't faltered at all. Dawn and Gloria want what's best for Summer. They can't always listen to their advice themselves. Moreover, Wickie isn't interested in the slightest. And yet, her dating experiences are very similar. She can connect to Summer's plight even though she refuses to articulate it in a meaningful or conductive way. The love is felt though. The friendships remain a prominent focus. Summer doesn't want to disappoint her parents. That relationship is just as important to her. She views Chris and Kris as having the perfect marriage. She idolizes them. She wants that for herself. As such, she buys into the story of how they came together. She then tries to apply that to her own life. It's never going to work because her parents aren't being honest with her. They overcame their past mistakes. And now, they want to protect Summer from making any herself. That makes it even easier to believe why she struggles fending for herself. She was sheltered and never made to do anything that could be perceived as scandalous in any way.

It's toxic to think Summer's father still has a right to protect her until someone comes along willing to marry her. It buys into the idea that women are nothing more than property. They are a commodity meant to be bartered amongst a group of men. If Chris can no longer carry out this mission, then the responsibility falls to Summer's teenage second cousin. It's so demeaning. She has agency in this situation. She trusts that her parents know what's best for her. Her world has been rocked by the revolution that they made countless bad decisions when they were younger. The story of how they met was all a lie. The logistics don't line up. The other girls can see that. They want to support Summer no matter what. It's difficult though. They can't make this decision for her. They voice their opinions. Of course, they can't be hypocritical either. That can prevent their point from being understood. They all have relationship problems. Dawn and Scott no longer see each other. They bond over parenting and their favorite shows. However, their romance isn't burning as brightly as it once did. Meanwhile, Wickie is obsessed with celebrity status because she equates that with being able to shine as the star she is. She can't date a "normal" person because that would quickly devalue herself in the process. She will become someone she doesn't even recognize and fall into a life of commitment that she doesn't want. Everything doesn't have to be that extreme. Those are the stakes all of these conflicts operate with though. These issues are important to all the main characters. It may not be healthy for Gloria to continue obsessing over her ex-wife. She continues to do exactly that. Chris and Kris are crossing a line though. Summer can be trusted to make the right decisions for herself. She can't worry about making mistakes and carrying that shame for the rest of her life. That too is an extreme proposition. She is still only able to cook a salad. She lives in a big, empty house by herself and that's what she beams with pride about. Her parents see the depressing nature all of this could lead to. They don't want that to happen to their daughter. However, she is an adult. She will look out for herself. She can be trusted to do that. She has always operated with that confidence. She still reflects fondly on the past. She won't let anyone interrupt those memories either. Those songs have importance to her even though they are just absolutely ridiculous in hindsight. Those memories have value. New opportunities can have that as well. Summer wants to be open to all the possibilities. She turns away from her parents. She still obviously loves them. This is simply a new experience for all of them that they have to be trusted to navigate through with sincerity and compassion. Plus, Amy Sedaris and Neil Flynn just make everything funnier.