Zoë and Eric are walking their kids to school. Sasha is complaining that she doesn't have a Marc Jacobs bag. Wait a second -- she doesn't?! That's effing child abuse. The boy child (who has not been named yet) shows his parents the tree his class planted. He says that another class only planted an herb garden, and Zoë says that a tree is so much better. Eric tells her that she's not supposed to rank on the other classes, but she insists that a tree is better than an herb garden. I guess that's supposed to show us that Zoë is an uncommon mother, but I think it just shows that Eric is kind of a pill. Zoë says she would love to spend every morning looking at a new tree, which is an odd request, and Boy Child says that she could if she walked him to school every day. "I would love to, but Mommy has to work to make the money that hot-but-not-as-good-a-wage-earner daddy doesn't." She didn't really say that.
Okay, there's a problem with art direction, show. Just like the papier-mâché Barnstead Media sign, the "The Willcroft School" sign looks like it was hung yesterday, by the first-graders. They also made the sign. I can see the wires holding it. Suddenly, the family is greeted very excitedly by another mother. Zoë is not excited -- mostly, it seems, because the woman is wearing a velour tracksuit. I understand. She says that this is such a surprise because they never see Zoë at school. So, handbags and passive-aggressiveness are our trends this hour, I see. The lady asks Boy Child, and a girl who's with her, if they are "pumped for Thursday." The little girl says, "My mommy's coming," and hugs the woman. Boy Child says, "Mine is too. Right?" Could this be more contrived? Actual mothers feel actual guilt about their actual conflicting commitments that affect their actual children, and this is the best these writers could come up with. Was this written post-strike? Eric's all, "How could you forget the field trip, it's on the bulletin board." It's news to Zoë that they have a bulletin board. Don't most kids want their mothers NOT to come on the field trip? Anyway, Bitchy Mommy tells Zoë that there's only room for three parents on the trip, and that it's been booked for weeks. It's their most popular trip. But she asks "Lukie" if he wants to be in her group. Then, she suggests that they do something fun after school. "The girls" want to go to "Construct-a-Bear" after school, so they'll do that. Zoë's looking on, a little pissed. Then, Eric says that he has to get the kids "to class." They're already at the steps; do these kids need an embossed invitation? Once Eric and the kids have gone, Bitchy Mommy tells Zoë that he's adorable. Zoë's annoyed and walks away. So, we see that they want Zoë to feel like her family is in danger, but the writers didn't really do anything organically to make that happen. Maybe all of that info could have been spread into two scenes, or what we saw could have been handled more gracefully, but that was a really shitty scene. "I would love to spend every morning looking at a new tree"??? It's a line that was written entirely for the response. That's a problem with this show. "My mommy's coming!" No kid would say that. I'm sorry, they wouldn't. It was said just so Zoë could be pressured about not knowing anything about it. There are a million better ways to get there too. But, in what I hope is a trend, the casting has been very good in this episode so far. Damian Young (a.k.a. Valerie Cherish's husband) is playing Grant, and Krista Allen (a.k.a. George Clooney's ex-girlfriend) is Bitchy Mommy. They're both great in their first scenes.