Bradford is out of prison and boy, is he mad at Alexis. He does the whole tranny-hating (and "you put me in prison"-hating) thing, and it seems like she's about to be ousted from Mode. However, it turns out that Claire, who's detoxing en route to prison, actually owns Mode, and so names Daniel and Alexis co-editors-in-chief. Daniel plays the good guy and offers Alexis 50% control and side-by-side letters from the editors. She plays along, but schemes to undermine him and take control of the issue. Wili continues to puppetmaster her way through the sibling rivalry, and even gives up her office so that Alexis has a space befitting her position. She then pays a visit to Claire in the hospital, and offers a bottle of vodka in exchange for power of attorney, which would mean that Wili runs Mode. And see, that's really plain old evil, and not funny-evil like the usual. Claire tells her to shove off. Meanwhile, Marc's mother (Patti Lupone!!!) is in town, and she's unaware of some key facts about his life. He thus, via some machinations from a "spurned" Amanda, enlists Betty's help to pose as his girlfriend. Marc, his mom, and her show cat travel to Queens for dinner with the Suarezes. The whole thing is complicated by the fact that Ignacio is under house arrest. Over the course of the evening, Marc ends up spilling the fact that Alexis's sabotaged issue of Mode, including a letter from the editor indicting Bradford, is en route to the printer, and Betty and Daniel take off to try to beat her there. Once they're gone, Marc, offended by his mother's unkind words about Betty and her family -- and particularly the "swishy" Justin -- finally comes out, only to be rejected by her. Meanwhile, Alexis's issue goes to press and Daniel recommits to his partying ways and crumples up his letter from the editor, which talked of how glad he was to have Alexis back. Amidst all of this chaos and her failed attempt to get control of Mode through Claire, Wili moves on to plan V (for vomit) -- seducing Bradford.
Previously on Ugly Betty: Mark's first impression of Betty was that she was a monster. Psycho INS worker Constance put Ignacio under house arrest via an ankle collar. Henry and Betty went from being "faux-friends who really want to do it with each other despite the presence of a mousy girlfriend from Arizona" to "two people who work in the same building." Claire wanted her family to come together, while Alexis told Daniel that Bradford said he would rather see her dead than as a woman. And, finally, Claire turned herself in for the murder of Fey Sommers. Are these people not exhausted?
We enter on a news standup outside of Meade Publications. It turns out that Bradford is expected to return to work after being released from prison. And, I mean...take a day off! You were just in jail, man. Go to the beach, or at least sleep in and then enjoy a bowl of Special K and a nice, entertaining episode of The View. It's called a "mental health day." In any case, all charges against Bradford were dropped after Claire turned herself in. The reporter says that he's going to get reactions from some of Meade's employees. He tries to get Betty, who rushes past him and straight into the bus stop shelter like a bird into a sliding glass door. Heh.
Cut to Justin, who is rewinding this scene over and over and laughing. Betty has to yell at Hilda -- who is snickering despite the fact that she's doing the hair of a giant Barbie head on top of the kitchen table -- so that she will yell at Justin. Justin apologizes, but says it gets funnier every time. That is so true. When I was in high school, we did Peter Pan for the musical my senior year, and Peter herself flew right into the scenery on the side of the stage. And all of it was caught on tape! It was awesome, and rewinding it and watching it over and over has become a staple of drunken get-togethers ever since. There's something about the particular magic of seeing it backward and forward that gets me every time. Hilda yells at Justin to go get ready for school, and he literally flits off. I didn't know that was actually possible. Hilda asks Betty how she's doing. Betty says that, since Claire's arrest, she's felt guilty. She says that she was the one who talked Claire into turning herself in. Hilda says that this isn't true, and that Claire did what she felt she had to do. As for the rest of the Meade family: Daniel and Alexis aren't speaking, Alexis and Bradford aren't speaking, and Claire is in the hospital detoxing before she can be arraigned. Hilda says that this should make Betty appreciate being part of a nice normal family. Just then, an alarm sounds. Hilda yells, "Papi! What part of 'house arrest' don't you understand?" Ignacio says that he just went out two feet to get the paper. Constance wouldn't even give him the stoop? That's cruel, man. Speaking of Constance, she calls. Ignacio tells her that he just stepped outside and that he's back in now, and she turns off the alarm. I feel like the National Association of INS Agents should make a big stink about their portrayal as horny, power-abusing nutbags. Betty says that it's only four weeks until Ignacio's hearing, but Ignacio says that he's already going stir-crazy. He misses the feel of rain and the smell of freshly mowed grass. Hilda reminds him that they live in Jackson Heights, where the grass smells like fried onions. Add wind that blows with the aroma of barbecue sauce and you've just sold me some real estate.