It's Sarah's 40th birthday! Again! Seems like she skipped the chapter in the Feminist Manifesto and has been lying to Luc about her age. Obviously, Luc wants to throw her an obnoxiously large surprise party with her entire family. Partially because, as a Walker, she is contractually obligated to have no friends, and partially because surprise dinner parties are the only way to celebrate birthdays on television. It's a SAG bylaw or something. Sarah swears all the family to secrecy, but everyone thinks it's too hilarious to keep quiet. Especially Justin, who missed the memo and blurts the truth in front of Luc. Luckily he already knew. Ha-ha-happy birthday.
Nora is also feeling old -- you know, because she is. An old friend got a tune-up from a plastic surgeon, and Nora, who apparently forgot how to grow old with dignity during the interim year, thinks it is a great idea. She brings Sarah along for some light mother-daughter bonding and a bit of Botox and Restylane. Happy birthday, right? But then Nora remembers, like, her ENTIRE PERSONALITY and doesn't get her neck done and instead lectures her demeaning boss and quits the flower shop. Now she's neither a florist, nor a lesbian.
While Holly has had months to mentally prepare for seeing Rebecca, we have not had the opportunity to gird ourselves. Rebecca is intrigued when David tells her that Justin has been working with Holly. Justin also has no chance to brace himself before Rebecca does a drive by visit. She won't come in, but she appreciates him helping her mom. At Holly's house, Rebecca talks to the mother who doesn't remember her and awkwardly hugs her. Holly kindly comforts her that she will find her mother some day. Rebecca starts crying and bolts from the house, because that's how she rolls. She runs straight to Justin and they make out, despite the fact that they were secretly divorced.
Kitty is playing desperate housewife up in Ojai and is acting out her favorite porn scenarios with a hunky plumber and a fake identity. Luckily, her baby has gone invisible so she can flirt all day. Kevin then pimps Kitty out to the hunky plumber and her fantasy takes a turn for the Julia Child and Kitty whips up a soufflé. But as the soufflé flattens, so do all of Kitty's lies and she has a Walker-style meltdown and ruins her own porn. But the plumber gets back on script and woos her with pizza, wine, and a pergola.
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You can follow Lulu Bates a.k.a. Melissa Locker on Twitter @woolyknickers.
Welcome back to Walkerlandia, where the passing of a loved one is not mourned so much as chucked into the recycling bin like just another empty bottle of pinot; where holding a job is a deep-dark secret; where everyone acts as if $55 million land sales never happened; where radio show producers casually offer new career paths to bossy strangers; where heinous BANGS go unremarked upon. It's a glorious place. Won't you plug your nose and jump in?
Sarah and her BANGS are wearing their reading glasses and hunched over needle and thread stitching together the rags of clothes by candlelight because she won't take even a penny from the absolutely massive profit from her land sale lest it encourage her to move to Paris. Lest you think this is another chapter in Les Miserables , to be clear, none of Victor Hugo's characters had BANGS. Her successful underwear model beau, Luc, who is supporting her in, one can only assume, his supportive briefs, finds her in the living room and points out that she looks like his grandmother darning socks. Pro Tip: Do not casually compare your older girlfriend to your grandmother. It does not go over well. Sarah growls at him and then remembers he is her meal ticket and smiles and explains she is hand sewing costumes for her kid's school play. Um... sure. That is 100% totally in character. Anyway, Luc reminds her it is her birthday, you know, in case in her dotage she forgot, and he wants to celebrate it at least with dinner. She does not need another reminder of time ticking away while she ages and he stays forever 17, stone cold, and sparkly. Sarah tries to get out of it, but Luc claims that since it's The Big One (a thousand?) he really wants to celebrate. He swears it will be just the two of them and she relents. Do I smell a surprise party?
Kevin calls Kitty to try and get her to harass Sarah with a round of Happy Birthday. (As if this show is going to pay the copyright licensing fee for that!) But Kitty is up in Ojai and packing away her groceries and ignoring her completely silent child and his artfully placed messy toys and the fact that he keeps looking off camera to his baby wrangler. Sarah is making out with her Meal Ticket when the phone rings. Kitty gets out two words of Happy Birthday before the copyright laws kick in and Sarah cuts her off. Kevin is on the line too and Sarah demands they both never mention the word "birthday" in her presence again. Then she swiftly changes the subject to Kitty's new life in Ojai. Kitty loves it up there because her celebrity status is unnoticed. Quick question: Could you recognize your senator's wife? No, you could not. Nor could you probably recognize a senatorial candidate. Just sayin'.
Anyway, as Sarah is talking, Luc slips out the front door so Sarah takes the opportunity to quickly explain that Luc kind of sort of thinks today is her 40th birthday and she would appreciate their help in lying to her life partner in perpetuity. Obviously they bust up laughing and then they laugh some more because Luc is planning a surprise party for Sarah. Tonight! At Scotty's restaurant! Everyone is coming! Sarah is not happy. But not nearly as unhappy as Kitty whose plumbing just exploded in her face. Stupid rental houses! Stupid birthdays! Don't worry Sarah, it's your party and you can cry if you want to. Of course, crying might cause wrinkles.
At her top secret flower job, Nora's boss is being a bitch and saying condescending things to her elder about how they use computers in these wacky modern times. Nora just nods politely instead of slapping the bitch with an age discrimination law suit or pointing out that she has her own charitable organization (although she may have actually forgotten that she does) or that she helped found and run Ojai Fruit before her kids managed to run it into the ground. No she just smiles politely and mutters something under her breath.
Luckily an acquaintance (Walkers have no friends, it's in the family bylaws) overhears the comment and calls it snarky to prove that she is young and hip to all the lingo. (Her and David Denby.) Nora perks up and notices that Celia's face has perked up too as have other assets. Celia explains that she had to get her boobs done to compete in the job market. She recommends that Nora does too, but she couches it in nauseatingly pro-feminist terms of "Take back your power!" And by "power" she means get your neck and boobs done and your eyebrows lifted. Elizabeth Cady Stanton would be SO proud. Then Celia shows Nora her engagement ring to a younger man and Nora is SOLD. You know, considering that Nora is supposed to have gotten her groove back, she seems to have misplaced her common sense, feminist ideology, and brain. Celia gets her an appointment with her son-in-law who is an "artist" of a doctor. Vom.
Holy Frijoles, it's Rebecca. She is on the phone in her window office wearing power slacks and having a power conversation about shipping invoices when David walks in. They hug and sit to chat for a minute. It's one of those chats that would normally be done over the phone, but phone calls are boring television. David explains that Holly just might be ready to see Rebecca. Rebecca protests in some feeble explanation as to why she hasn't been on the show for the last two episodes about how Holly didn't remember her and the doctors thought it was too upsetting to see her. David explains that Holly's been hearing stories about Rebecca and while she won't get all her memories back, she just might remember she has a daughter. Rebecca is super excited. Well, as excited as Emily Van Camp ever gets (pulse rate = 89 bpm) and the plan is set. But, wait! What stories did David tell Holly that miraculously cured her? David takes a deep breath and admits it wasn't him. It was Justin.
Sarah goes to talk to her mom about the fact that she has been lying to her boyfriend for years now and he has never once seen her passport or her driver's license. Nora tsk tsks her daughter's deceiving ways and Sarah gets frustrated. She knows she's a liar liar and her pants are almost on fire (or will be when the cake arrives with 1,000 candles plus one to grow on!) There's a lot of irritation in her voice when she points out that she met Luc in France and didn't think they had a future and so just shaved a few years off her age. Since when do grownups ask each other's ages? Whatever. Sarah lied when he rudely asked instead of responding with the Miss Manners approved, "A lady never tells, and a gentleman never asks." Then she never managed to get out of it and it's too late! Nora tsk tsks some more and then her phone rings and it is the plastic surgeon calling to set up an appointment, but Nora pretends it is just a regular old doctor's office and ignores the call. Of course when Sarah sees that the call is from a doctor and Nora hastily tries to cover it up, Sarah assumes she has CANCER and starts to tear up. Because, yeah, why not. Nora is then forced to admit that she doesn't have cancer, but instead wants to be viable in the workplace, score a younger man (or one who isn't a scam artist), and, you know, get back in touch with her feminism. Plastic surgery is just so much more fun than a NOW membership. Nora explains that she has been feeling bad about her neck lately and wants to feel better about herself and the only way for New Nora to improve her self-esteem is to get her face tucked. Instead of calling BULLSHIT! from the top of Mt. Shasta, Sarah admits that she wants to get back in touch with her bra burning days, too, except she needs the support, so maybe some Botox would help. She and Nora plan to double date to the doctor's office. Barf.
Rebecca knocks on the door of her old apartment and surprises the crap out of Justin. She claims he looks different, but it is probably just his newfound maturity, straight talking, and level-headedness showing. Justin invites her inside, but in some sort of reverse vampire move, she can't come in now that he's invited her and would prefer to talk awkwardly on the porch instead of, say, MAKING A PHONE CALL. She just wanted to thank him for talking to her mom and was curious what stories he told Holly. What is this fascination with what stories were told about her? Is she worried everyone has spent the last year reminding Holly that Rebecca did a bunch of jello shots in 8th grade and barfed up blue all over the white rug? I mean, whatever, they told her stories and Holly wants to see you and it's probably not to talk about mysterious stains from middle school. But Justin won't answer her until she agrees to come in, but she won't come in. As she turns to go he yells after her that he told Holly about how he fell in love with a girl who was very likely his sister and that was kind of awkward for everyone but they loved each other anyway. Rebecca still leaves. She just can't go back to how they were.
Up in Ojai, Kitty is reenacting some sort of horny housewife porn film. She has stashed her baby somewhere and is perched over her hunky plumber as he ...um, tends to her pipes. She is full-on lying to him about how she grew up in Ojai and he probably recognizes her from the farmers' market and how she hates politicians and city dwellers as much as he does. After being let into her house and fixing her sink he finally introduces himself. She does too, as Leslie Culpepper. Oh Kitty. That is not a porn star name at all. She assists him poorly since she is a girl and doesn't know what a wrench is. Feminism is completely dead in Walkerlandia apparently.
Kitty crouches next to her plumber and ogles his abs even though they are covered under two layers of shirts (the ever sexy thermal and flannel combo). Then the unthinkable happens: Her darling brother drives up to see how she is doing and to see if he can help with her plumbing emergency. How DARE he?? She goes to kick Kevin back to Pasadena. Since Kevin just spent ab