So on the website that I totally don’t stream this show illegally from, the title is “Girl Meets Brother”. Both titles are terrible. According to imdb, “Girl Meets Brother” is supposed to be the season finale.
Also according to imdb, the next episode is about Riley learning to be herself. Which was the plot of the pilot. And also dumb because Riley still doesn’t really have any personality. Besides liking Lucas and being dumb, as I pointed out in the last episode.
We start with a class production of Romeo and Juliet. Of course, Lucas is Romeo and Riley is Juliet. Farkle objects to Lucas going to kiss Riley, as happens in the play, so he’s all “I thinkest not!” He’s playing the spear-carrier, which I don’t believe is a part that’s even really in the play, and certainly not in the catacombs scene at the end. Why would there be any sort of guardsman just hanging out in the tomb for no reason? Farkle asks the audience if they think he should be the one who kisses Juliet/Riley, and they all applaud, and then he calls Maya up on stage.
It’s a little early to go on a tangent, but UGGGH ROMEO AND JULIET. I mentioned long, long ago that I appreciated that Feeny had the class study Hamlet for a change of pace. Because seriously, like every single other tv show that features kids in school, they just HAVE to do Romeo and Juliet. I guess GMW gets a bonus for just jumping in with them already doing the play, and not the whole thing with auditions and stuff. But that’s still weird. That’s always weird when these shows have productions of Romeo and Juliet and the one character is freaking out about the kiss at the end on opening night, like they didn’t already rehearse the play. Plus the fact that Romeo and Juliet do kiss about three times before the “thus with a kiss I die” scene. Hey Arnold is the only show I think has an excuse for any of this – the final Juliet, Helga, was like the fifth understudy and had been systematically getting the other girls to drop out of the play until the night before the show opened, so she wouldn’t have had any rehearsal time anyway. And it also seemed to me like they were doing a highlight reel of the play rather than the whole thing anyway.
But just UGGGH.
After the play, in the hallway for some reason, Lucas, Riley, Maya, and Farkle come out to applause. I guess they were the only people in the play. Oh and no one actually applauds for Farkle. Riley tells him he was great, even though he was terrible. Honestly I don’t know what he did wrong besides disrupting the play. His character probably wasn’t supposed to be in that scene anyway, so… Plus, he didn’t do anything worse than Maya, who wasn’t even supposed to be in the play at all.
Maya chastises Riley for lying. And oh look what today’s lesson is.
What class is this??
Cory talks about how people through history were prosecuted for telling the truth. And then the class ends. Very short lesson.
Maya has a gold locket. Riley keeps asking where she got it, and she keeps changing the story, partly because Riley keeps asking. Maya at one point says she got it in France. Riley says that can’t be true because if it were, Maya would’ve brought her back a croissant. Maya happens to have a chocolate croissant in her jacket.
Riley comments that it’s “piping hot.” That really ought to concern her, that a croissant that made a 9 hour flight is still as hot as if it came out of the oven. Also that Maya’s too poor to have a phone or anyone to check her homework somehow made a round-trip flight to France.
It turns out Maya found the croissant on the street anyway. By the way, the chocolate croissant in Innoventions Plaza in Epcot are my favorites.
Riley keeps hounding Maya for information, and Maya says she’ll tell the truth if Riley tells the the truth about how she feels Farkle did in the play.
We come back to Riley asking her dad if it’s okay to tell a little white lie to spare someone’s feelings. Cory says no. Okay.
Then Topanga brings him his dinner. She says it’s chicken but he’s freaking out and doesn’t want to eat it. It looks like it’s just a Cornish game hen with some odd garnishings, I don’t get the big deal. But Topanga and Riley are like “Eat it, and tell the truth about how it tastes!” This is a really terrible parallel to Riley’s situation, if it’s supposed to be one.
Cory eats it, and says he knows how the chicken died – it died of eating this chicken.
I wish this were an audio review so you could hear my exasperated pauses after I tell you this stuff.
Auggie tells Cory that sometimes, when there’s stuff he doesn’t want to eat, Topanga feeds it to him with the “airplane” trick. This kid is five years old and Topanga’s still doing the “airplane” thing? I’m not expert, but that seems a bit old to me. Also Auggie is eating spaghetti and meatballs while everyone else is having chicken, so…???
Maya, being pursued by a crafty pigeon (yes, seriously), climbs into Riley’s window. Riley immediately asks where she got the locket, and even says this time that she hopes she didn’t steal it. Maya says she got it out of a lost and found box. Some store she walks by every day had the locket in their lost and found box for months and she thought it wasn’t fair that someone would just go and lose something so beautiful, so she took it. It looks like it came out of a gumball machine, but okay.
Maya thinks Riley is ridiculous for lying to Farkle but not accepting a lie from Maya. Riley says something about fungusy shower shoes, and then says she thinks Maya’s a thief. Maya gets mad and leaves.
At school, Riley starts to tell Maya something but Maya goes “I CAN’T HEAR YOU” and starts singing and dancing to pad out the show’s run time and then lets Riley talk. Riley tells Maya that the locket doesn’t belong to her, and she’s a thief, and she’s upsetting the universe.
I’d understand if there was anything going on that was wacky and unusual to make Riley think that, but Maya having that locket has had no effect on anything. I mean, I guess technically Maya’s a thief, but she said that thing had been in the lost and found for months. I’m sure its original owner is probably no longer looking for it, and in a month or two the store owner might’ve just donated the thing to Goodwill, or pawned it, anyway.
Cory observes Riley saying “sooner or later, the truth will come out”, which is what he said earlier during his one minute lecture on the truth.
Maya then again points out Riley lying to Farkle, but Riley doesn’t think her little lie is upsetting the universe at all. Funny, I don’t see how Maya’s locket is upsetting the universe, either.
Farkle then enters the scene, announcing he’s quit the chess club because he’s an ACTOR, and he says the chemistry club are losers.
Topanga’s reading a “When Bad Things Happen to Good People” book, by the way.
But Cory’s like “Look at all these chicken recipes! With pictures!” and he reads a bunch of recipe titles out and Topanga goes “And your point?”
Cory pulls out Auggie’s dinosaur book and tells Topanga the chicken she cooked was actually a pterodactyl. He reads off a bunch of facts about pterodactyls and this whole scene is WAY too long for how stupid it is.
Long story short, Topanga locks Cory out of the apartment.
Cory tells Riley he doesn’t know anything about the universe. Riley says the universe is all upside down: she lies to Farkle, he loves her, she lies to Maya, she’s out the window. Erm… okay? It’s not like Farkle fell in love with Riley because she lied to him, he already liked her. And Maya’s already gotten mad at Riley about things before, so…?
None of the points on this show ever make any sense.
Maya shows up just then, and Cory compliments her on the locket. Riley’s all “It looks like SOMEBODY ELSE’S expensive gold locket!” Cory says “Well the funny thing about lockets is it’s usually what’s on the inside that matters to someone.” Ooooh, good one.
Cory goes to leave but Topanga’s standing in front of the door. He closes it and goes out Riley’s window.
Then Maya opens the locket.
They don’t know who that family is, but Maya’s keeping the locket.
Cory comes back.
Riley asks Cory if maybe it was wrong to lie to Farkle but okay for Maya to keep the locket.
No. No, look. Okay, first of all, I don’t think Farkle did terrible in the play either. Lucas sure didn’t do well. Not one person kept in-character. And it’s not Riley’s fault that Farkle took her praise to heart and decided to quit all his hobbies to get into acting. Maybe he just really likes acting. And sure he wasn’t great or professional or anything, but he’s like 12. He’ll improve over time, especially if he takes acting classes or stars on a sitcom where he’s one of the most entertaining characters, certainly more entertaining than the main character.
Auggie comes in with a plate of spaghetti, offering it to Cory. It’s cold, and they refer to it as “cold sgetti”. Auggie apologizes for it, but Cory says the fact that he went to the trouble at all is good enough for him. Auggie then says “You said that very nice. Why didn’t you say it that way to mom?”
Well… good job, Auggie. Points for you!
Cory, Riley, and Maya are all like “Wait so you’re saying it’s not about telling the truth, it’s about how you treat someone?” They praise Auggie for his philosophical depth. Auggie then says “Do you people realize that I’m only this many?”
Yeah I’m taking all those points back.
Farkle’s dead. He auditioned for the next play, and he was so bad he’s not even allowed to watch the play. He blames Riley for building up his confidence falsely. Riley apologizes, but says it was just because she cares so much for him she didn’t want to hurt him. Farkle’s cool with that so he makes out with her chin.
You read that right.
Maya’s all “Haha your first kiss was with Farkle!” Riley’s all “No, it doesn’t count!” which I don’t think it does, since their lips didn’t touch. Lucas then appears out of nowhere, reciting that one monologue – the “Eyes, look your last” one. Riley jumps up to be dead on the thing so they can kiss or whatever, but Lucas cuts off partway through, saying he saw the whole thing with Farkle.
He’s mad at Farkle for “stealing him moment” and Riley’s like “Your moment??” Riley’s hoping he’ll kiss her. But Lucas doesn’t, saying “My moment will be my moment.” Good. Having your first kiss on an empty cardboard set with your friend watching would be weird.
Haha speaking of, poor Candace Cameron (D.J. on Full House) had her first kiss on the show. I’d be so mortified if it were me.
So, later, Maya is convinced to return the locket to the lost and found box at the store. Surprisingly, the family pictured in the locket is just randomly standing in the subway.
Yeah, they’re just standing there, not looking for anything or waiting for a train or anything. So Maya gives the locket back. Yaay I guess. Riley declares that all is right with the universe now, which would be a more profound statement if literally anything had happened to indicate the universe was objecting to Maya having the locket.
Cory tells Topanga it doesn’t matter what she makes for dinner, all that matters is that she’s there with him, and that’s the truth.
The only good thing about this episode was the pigeon. Also, despite my utter hatred for Auggie, I have to admit, he has some AWESOME pajamas. Like you know Ms. Frizzle from The Magic Schoolbus? Think her dresses, but in onesie pajamas form.
Also I guess it was nice to see Cory and Topanga more involved with the plot, even though Topanga still doesn’t do anything and Cory’s just insane.
I think Riley was overreacting to Maya keeping the locket. I mean, at first it was okay, because she was just worried Maya had started stealing. But then Riley just got really annoying by constantly saying the universe was out of whack (again, there was NOTHING that really indicated it was, aside from maybe the pigeon – which by the way had more on-screen charisma than Lucas). It’d be one thing if Riley had been more clearly saying these things because she genuinely felt it was wrong, but it came off more like she wanted Maya to give the locket back because her dad said “the truth will come out” which doesn’t even make sense when it comes to pilfering the lost and found box.
I’m also getting really tired of every episode ending with Maya revealing how poor and sad she is. In THIS episode she reveals that her dad hasn’t sent her anything in a long time.
I don’t know if Maya is getting the stronger bits because she has the better actress, or if Riley’s parts are falling flat because of the writing rather than the actress, but whatever the case, it’s definitely a problem that is apparent to MANY viewers, that Riley is just not a great main character. And, again, that pigeon had more charisma than Lucas did in this episode, although to be fair, I have developed a fondness for pigeons recently (apparently they actually have an extraordinary reasoning ability, despite being so stupid).
By the way, I don’t remember if I mentioned this before, but Maya has some fabulously stylish clothes for apparently being sad and poor. I’m not saying she should be wearing a burlap sack to school, but I’m actually offended she’s better dressed than I am.
Final show notes: Farkle and Riley have better chemistry together than Riley and Lucas do, and Maya and Lucas have WAY better chemistry than anyone else does. Interesting.
Discussion: What if Riley was the bad girl and Maya was the straight-laced, boring friend? That would make things a bit shaken up from Boy Meets World, and would allow for at least one scene where Maya would chew out Riley for acting like a little punk even though she has two nice parents and a nice, loving home.