"I'll tell you about your daughter," Ian responds, and says that Meredith makes him laugh and smile and dance and frolic and love. "I'm not here to learn about an experience. I'm here because of your daughter." Meredith's mom actually clasps her hands together in rapturous joy at this speech, and in an excellent confessional, she tells us, "As much as she likes Matthew -- I mean, she adores him -- with Ian, it seems to be he's sweeping her off her feet." Right on, Meredith's mom. Like we learned last week "Matthew is the kind of guy you take home to your family." But nobody ever said if that's a good thing.
Dinner. Again. Ian talks ambiguously about the end of his job and life in New York City, telling them, "Everything that I own is in storage." Meredith's mom even makes an inside joke and says, "That sounds familiar!" Why is it so suave when Ian said it, but when Chad said the same thing everyone was all, "Allowance for mowing the lawn is not a job, Buffalo Boy." In the nation of Meredith, Ian is the cool but slacker New York, and Chad was the earnest but overly-industrial Buffalo. In a confessional, Ian frets on, "I think that her parents probably hoped for a guy who was very home-grown, grounded, has a steady, focused career...that worries me." Ian. Dude. THEY LOVE YOU. You could totally be like, "You know what tastes of chicken? Endangered baby seal tastes of chicken. The more endangered, the chickenier" and they'd all squeal, "That sounds familiar!" And Meredith unpacks the very fallacies on which the show is based, and Ian charms them into airing it. She tells her family, "I don't need a faaaahntasy suite. I don't need an exotic date." Don't you? "I could be in a shoebox and be fine with Ian." Not much spying to do in a shoebox. Except on that old lady, to learn how she seems to be producing so many children without the help of a man.
Meredith again retires to the kitchen with Matt and her mother. She sets up her central conflict for this episode: "It would be two different lifestyles for me. Stable, living in Texas...you know me. You know how much I love to travel and have that type of lifestyle." And Ian is so "loving and caring" and would teach her Portuguese. Meredith's mom finds that "exciting," and pretty much clears the room with her A-material: "I've been married forty years. I'm ready for excitement myself." Oh, my god. Ian makes them young again. He tells us in a confessional, "The last thing I usually think about at night is Meredith, and sometimes I wake up with her on my mind." "Usually"? "Sometimes"? This is the language of utter commitment. Outside, Ian takes Meredith's head between his hands and kind of shakes it back and forth, which I've seen him do a bunch of times now. Back in the house, Uncle Steve finally gets a line in, saying that Ian is "a breath of fresh air." Meredith tells us in a confessional how much she needs her family's input, but everyone just agrees that it won't be an easy decision. "You picked the two best that you could possibly pick," says Meredith's mom, and Meredith expresses nervousness at how this is going to end. She didn't know her feelings were going to be so strong. She's ready for a proposal. But what's more important is finding the right person. I know. It's so fresh and daring it's like a show you've never seen before. I literally feel exactly the same way.