Previously, and in some cases never-before-heard, on Making the Band: Ashley has a girlfriend, Shelli, who tearfully saw him off at the airport en route to Orlando. For at least the third time, we see Mini-Lou's first-day lecture, "I'm not really sure where your heads are at, but..." "But they're not in my lap," booms my pal Omar G, who in his first Band viewing has apparently already pegged Mini-Lou's internal monologue. We then see scenes of Erik-Michael with Herizon member Jenny, where he tells us he enjoys her company and that "I really enjoy kissing." Lou squirts some Binaca into his mouth and puckers up in front of his mirror. Cut to Ranger Marc asking the guys, "Is this about fun and games, or is this about making a group?" Grappling with this, the most nefarious of life's questions, I loudly bless the credits for answering it and alleviating my confusion.
Ranger Marc, a.k.a. Marc Piacenza the Boy-Band Nanny, apparently does not spell his name with a 'k' at the end. A pox on him for not being obvious! Nevertheless, he is still an edgy Man Van chauffeur with a heart of gold, spewing advice and moral guidance -- perhaps the "c" is for "caring." Or "sCripted."
Another full moon in Orlando. Jenny's talking to Erik-Michael, who's standing up hunched over the Bat Phone looking ready to hang up and flee at a moment's notice. He tells Jenny he just called to say goodbye -- not quite the Stevie Wonder sentiment for which she'd hoped. On a split-screen, we see the scene from two episodes ago when Ranger Marc gave Erik, Ashley and Jacob a tongue-lashing.... and then scolded them staying out late at a tattoo parlor. Erik-Michael says none of them got in big trouble, but were encouraged to realign their priorities. Jenny wants to know if Herizon is still allowed to hang out with the group, saying she's the last person who'd get in the way of their work. E-M assures her none of this is her fault, but he can't hang out with her because he needs to focus. "I'll miss you," Jenny whines. "Don't forget about me." Erik looks bored to tears by her words. In his confessional scene, Erik says he sees a conflict between having a personal life and embarking on this career. It's time to prioritize, he can't have a relationship right now, and damn his fishy, boyish looks for luring ladies to his lips like vultures to a cadaver.
Gathered around the kitchen table, the guys are practicing the harmony on "Love Potion No. 9," which sounds decent but not great. That's the pattern here -- they're always decent, never outstanding. Ikaika's trying to get creative with his part, but it doesn't work and he rolls his eyes and laughs and skips off to call Malia for the eighteenth time. On the other half of a split-screen, Trevor's broken record is playing: "everyone needs to practice," "in two weeks, the cut's going to be made," blah blah blah rejection blah snore. Bryan Chan pops up to tell us that at this point, no one has "taken the perspective of, 'I don't need to rehearse.' " Paul immediately rains on Bryan's observational parade, saying that he knows they should practice, but that "I'm not a big practicer. I have my part on Love Potion FLAT," he says, slapping his leg. Poor choice of words, Paul, since "flat" doesn't have any positive vocal connotations. Then he pauses and backpedals a bit, admitting that okay, maybe he does need to practice a little, he just doesn't feel the need to sit at home and do it because he can nail it in rehearsal. We see him sitting, bored, listening to the guys sing and adding his falsetto at the end, wondering why this episode revolves around everyone else. Erik chips in some of his signature profound logic: "We need to not be concentrating on things that do not matter right now." Confucius has spoken.