This is all you could find? Recap of 90DF The Other Way S02E21
Welcome to another stunning recap of Teayang and Drascilla, where a herd of baffling adults operate like accidents, while their wonder-children marvel at the world despite them.
When we last saw Jenny, she was hanging out with people 35 years her junior, and she wasn’t getting any of their pop culture references. Sis-in-law Sheree has been hitting that smug tank like it’s nitrous at an EDM festival, and Jenny’s tears only added spice to her high. Sheree insists Sumit needs to tell his parents he’s about to get married for a second time, or they’re going to rat him out. Amit agrees with this, which is his second violation of the Sibling Code of Ethics, which clearly states that substance abuse and actions that could result in prison time are the only acceptable reasons for being Cindy Brady. Sumit doesn’t point out that he has no intention of getting married, and probably still doesn’t even have the ring, because what, was that theater degree for nothing?
Amit finds all of this very unfair. He just contributed to Sumit’s divorce GoFundMe, and now he’s going to have to start saving for a second one?
“Yeah,” Jen interrupts, despite never being invited to this recap. “Like, is your dad even paying for the second wedding? My dad never responded to my second wedding invoice. Amit should get drunk at the reception and make a sloppy chad of a toast.”
Amit and Sharee finally leave, and Sumit realizes that his lie blueprint has fraying edges, and he’s going to have to tell them if he’s going to delay the ring ceremony again.
“The COVID-19 excuse only worked until we got these disease banishing cards,” Sumit says. “Then the lawyer didn’t help, what with his ‘look at this easy option’ business. Now I feel confident that if anything at all happens, I will use my parents as an excuse for another ring delay.”
“Where have I heard that before?” Jenny retorts. Stop everything and clear the runway, Jenny might be coming in for a landing.
The next day Jenny wants to impress the woman she befriended and betrayed, so she’s making an Indian dish Sumit’s mother is 100% not going to eat. Sumit tells her it’s delicious, but he’s not sure how it’s going to taste poured over bullshit. Jenny is nervous about sharing space with two people she hasn’t seen since they tried to “take Sumit away from me,” and Sumit reminds her to stay calm and not get angry when his mother is shouting things she doesn’t understand.
Mom arrives with a red scarf to announce she’s ready for war, and Sumit greets them by touching their feet. Mom and Dad give Jenny an icy greeting, before telling Sumit they want him to leave with them, and Sumit pauses before saying he won’t leave. Sumit asks them to be happy for his happiness, while Jenny sits there as a reminder that you can live in India year-round, and still make no effort to learn the language.
Mom is unfazed as Sumit demonstrates his commitment to compulsive lying by telling his parents that the minute the lawyer said they could marry without permission, he was all like, “No way, I would never do anything that would offend my parents ever. Surely I will get permission first!” Both parents don’t give a fuck, because they’ve brought their reading glasses and plan to burn through every book in the library.
“You are trying to absorb a culture from a faraway place,” dad says. “Why don’t you get 23andme and find out you’re 1/200th American if it will make you feel cultured? Then you can dress in white t-shirts like Bruce Springsteen and wear a cowboy hat and vote against your best interests! Why do you hate your health care, son? We have these cards, and there, they have nothing.”
“Why don’t you find another oldie? Find a hundred year old!” Father coming out with the hits. “This is all you could find? Yes, I will talk about my unemployed, cheating, catfish son as a jewel stolen from my crown by this merciless harpie.”
Ace Detective Jenny surmises that things are going poorly, and mom shouts that Jenny should leave Sumit. While Jenny has no idea what words she said, this is not her first time being on the receiving end of an incoherent yell, so she shakes her head, which makes mom’s eyes get wide to prepare for total detonation.
Mother Sumit says, “You’re becoming old because she’s old. Why don’t you get up at 6:30AM to stand in line at Old Country Buffet? Go ahead and turn a record on your Victoria. When does your Alaskan cruise leave?”
Sumit gets on his knees and flips a table, to show how America he’s become, and says his love for Jenny surpasses all other love he’s known. They are unmoved, and mom declares that having kids is the point of marriage, and he’s about to be a stepdad to kids who are older than himself. Sumit says, “Dammit mom, I told you it’s called childless by choice, and we have much online support from people with many, many houseplants. Stop trying to force my crotch fruit to drop when they haven’t even ripened.”
Jenny: Yep, I’m still here.
Sumit: Mother I throw myself at your feet to remind you yet again of my brief marriage misery, which you paid for yourself and I could have backed out of, but didn’t. Do you see how I am the victim or hero in every narrative? Do you see what a skilled narcissist can accomplish?
Mother Sumit: Do you see how I am chewing this glass? Blood drips from my mouth, but still I bite, summoning the power of Kali-Ma to enact vengeance!
Jenny: Well, that’s a wrap for me. Time to walk away and pretend i have any intention of leaving the country for the sake of reuniting his estranged family. Scene.
Yazan and Angela are meeting Yazan at a restaurant, and this time he’s got a translator named Adam to clarify his statements, and serve as the MVP of this episode.
“You see, I’m not a plastic piece of garbage bought on overstock.com,” Adam explains. “In fact, I promise to deliver a dramatic retelling of the most pertinent events in what might be a British accent. You should listen to my audiobook performances, truly.”
But am I going to leave Deavan’s Instigation Device (ID) out of this recap? No, I am not. Humans will never replace machines, and ID knows it.
Yazan explains that he’s okay with giving up everything for Brittany, and he’s done everything she wanted him to do. All he asks if that she pledge her love to him and marry him. He says she doesn’t have to convert, and he’s not trying to get familial approval, because it’s not going to happen anyway. He just wants her, and to know that he’s loved.
Brittany: I don’t know why, but your alienation makes more sense in a British accent.
Adam: I am beginning to understand you, and the unique suffering that has plagued you. Surely this time our union will be blessed, and we will sally forth into a field of lavender. Come now, and take my hand so tenderly, as we drift towards our shared future.
ID (Instigation Device): Brittany says she doesn’t listen when you talk.
Yazan: I will give up everything if you pledge your love to me. I’ll lay down on the railroad tracks and tie myself to them. Then, I will hand you the keys to the train, and ask you to pull the whistle.
Adam: This enormous sacrifice will be but a passing storm if you pledge your love to me, so that we might start a life free from the burden of familial demands, warmed by our radiant love.
ID: I want to hit you with a train.
Yazan is disappointed that he’s laid it all on the line, and the best Brittany can offer is another lukewarm non-answer. But you can’t lie to a liar, and Brittany knows Yazan has only revealed 20% of the story, so she asks to speak with Yazan’s brother, Obaida, privately. Obaida is the Draco Malfoy of the family, and Brittany describes their interaction as weird, with the way he calls her mudblood and how he’s always zipping around on a broom. Yazan sets up their meeting, and Ultimate Translator Adam stands at the ready, and he’s not afraid to add that trademark flourish.
Obaida: Hmm. Is that a sinister way to start? Let me summon the forces of darkness to preserve me during this exchange. I’m scared for Yazan. The fam hates this relationshit, and Yazan is in grave danger. They think he abandoned his culture and tradition for Coke Zero and Wrangler jeans, which is the theme of this episode. He could be killed.
Adam: I come to you with grave concerns about Yazan’s future. The family has been torn asunder, with some members wishing a plague on both your houses. Lo, for this love he might lose his very life, at the hands of his own father, no less. Madness! They could draw down their swords and murder him in cold blood by the roadside, like so many sheep in Ethiopia.
ID: Yazan is totally dead, and it’s your fault.
Brittany: Cries forever.
Yazan’s brother is moved by Brittany’s emotional display, and says he will try to plead their case with his family, but either way he and his bro are down for life. “If the whole world stands against Yazan, I will stand beside him,” Obaida says, perfectly demonstrating the Sibling Code of Ethics.
Amit: Who is this Cindy Brady? I am not this.
Obaida: Okay, Cindy.
Brittany wants to know if a hollow conversion would help, and Obaida says no, because Islam is a conviction, not a bargaining tool. Still, he doesn’t think someone could cry so much and not love Yazan. So he tells Brittany that she’s basically his entire family now, and she has to take care of him. No pressure.
Brittany: You’ve given me a lot to think about, like when the next flight leaves for Chicago.
Adam: Now that your situation is clear to me, my heart swells with empathy. For now I’ll retreat for private meditation and reflection, and shall say no more.
ID: Fuck this. Deuces, Draco.
Ari is taking her mom to the airport, “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac playing in the background, setting the mood for trashing Biniyam. Janice says that she feels less comfortable that she did when she left last time, because their communication is still bad, and it seems like Ari is basically on her own. Still, Ari’s pregnancy hormones are starting to deflate to human levels, so she’s not so interested in her mom’s opinions. This doesn’t mean we’re spared another tearful airport scene, so just imagine a lot of crying and declarations of not knowing when she’ll see her again (about two weeks).
It’s time for Avi to get baptized so that Biniyam’s family will stop repeatedly tapping on the window asking: “Is he going to be baptized now? Now? How bout now? Now?” Ari doesn’t know what to expect, and she’ll never earn her black belt in passive aggression if she bothers to ask.
“If I ask, how will I resent him for not telling me later?” Ari has a point.
“It’s okay. I won’t be around later,” Biniyam has one, too.
The ritual starts with harmonic singing, incense, and blessings. Avi is given the name Tibebe Selassi, which means Get Me Out of Here in Yoruba, and Ari makes a note to forget this name going forward. The priest pies her with a Bible to see if it makes her face melt off, and since the best he gets is a hiss there’s no chance of adding an exorcism to their baptism bill. Biniyam’s family whispers to Ari that she needs to get Avi naked for a little Jesus shower. When the clothes are unwrapped we get to see the distinct haircut the kid already has going on, and either the kid is growing his own 18th century monk look, or they did that business on purpose. The kid cries, because that’s his only way to vote, and some rando is waterboarding him, and his mom is just watching like a monster.
“What is even happening?” Avi has concerns. “I was slumbering in this warm dark cave, when suddenly I was pulled into the light. Since then I’ve had my penis cut and water dumped over me while people chant. Is this being abducted by aliens? I feel like this is aliens.”
ID: It’s totally aliens.
Afterwards they head to a reception of sorts, where Ari is tasked with wrapping Avi in injera (Ethiopian bread) for good fortune. Ari has never made a burrito before, so she’s lost, and really, Ari? REALLY? Avi seems down with edible blankets, and looks like he’s going to laugh when his mom weirdly lays him on his side. “You mean like this?” She asks, standing him on his head. “I don’t get it, tell me what to do! The splits? How about face planted? Should he wear it like a hat?”
After Avi has a chance to fart the bread alive, it’s passed around for everyone to eat. This is the scene I’ve always wanted, and Drascilla’s diaper eggs salute it. Wish reports that Avi’s farts are delicious, and Ari was well-behaved all day, and she just knows that if she keeps tracking Ari’s behavior with charts, graphs, and judgement, she’ll totes be happy in Ethiopia.
Jihoon is about to introduce us to a tradition of his own, and since Deavan’s father is present and feels honored to be included, there’s a 25% chance Elicia will express an emotion other than scorn. This is good news, because if Elicia continues to frown at their living situation, she might do something to disrupt the wedding that doesn’t matter, because she’s already married anyway.
“I know how stressful the second wedding is,” GTFO Libby. “What with all the peasant food and drunken brothers, and SO much planning to do the same thing again.”
“I don’t have those things, but my mom has resting sad face. That summons the strength of 10 Karens. Yes, this is powerful enough to stop the marriage that already happened,” Deavan dumbs.
“Who is this Karen? What about the Cindys?” Amit just wants to feel included.
“You must tell your parents about Cindy,” Sharee isn’t having it.
Teayang is readying for the occasion by fussing, because he doesn’t have any of his mom’s delicious hair to chew on. Once she lifts him up he grabs a handful to express his intent to devour her inch by inch if the situation demands it, but she fails to heed his warning. Elicia likes apartment, but makes a point of calling it a “starter home,” in case their mattress needs more backhanded compliments for support.
What’s about to go down is a Hahm (Box) ceremony, which involves a groom walking in with two dudes sporting squid masks to banish evil, smashing a ghord to demonstrate competence in fucking shit up, and gifting the parents a box filled with items that will sustain the marriage, like sex toys and a restraining order. At the bottom of the box is a divorce, but it’s written in Korean so Elicia throws it in the trash.
While Elicia keeps turning the box around in her hands, hoping to meet at least one cenobite if they have those chains properly sanitized, Jihoon goes looking for Deavan, who is hiding as part of this business. It’s not much of a hunt, since all he had to do is follow the scent of complaint.
“I’m going to eat one of my friend’s faces now,” Jihoon says, snapping off a piece of squid and shoving it into his cake hole.
Father Deavan is thoroughly charmed, Elicia is awkwardly judgmental, and Deavan whines that she can’t believe they sold her for a box. So did he get the box back, or did someone promise Jihoon a cash back refund?
And still, Teayang soldiers on, interested in his grandfather. “Who is this older fellow bringing a thin beam of light into my dark world?” Teayang has questions. “Drascilla was moved by their reunion, so much that she neglected to fart in her birthday bread before we ate it. And this box tempts me. So many beautiful things I can hold in my mouth. Can I ride it down a snow covered hill in it? Can the older guy take me? Who is this wizard?”
Deavan tries on her wedding dress with an assist from her mom, and lives in a world where her butt is big. It is a gorgeous, unique dress, and no one is asking her to say yes to it. Deavan says the way Jihoon helped with the miscarriage really fixed their relationship, and she’s happy to be close with his mom all of a sudden. Elicia feels bad that she couldn’t be there for Deavan in her grief, blaming Jihoon and accelerating a narrative where this is his fault. Elicia says she supports the marriage for her and the kids, which is support-like, but not really. This is the “I’m sorry that you feel that way” of support declarations.
All of this is better than American Cheese and our favorite frowning grocery shopper, Melyza. Like a lot of people who move to neighboring nations, Cheese has kept his job, and now that he knows Melyza went dick shopping while they were apart, he’s ready to return to it. He’s so torn about his possible relocation that he’s already bought a ticket, without telling Melyza. She’s caught off guard, since she was really enjoying the upper hand and the possibility of milking this forever.
They’re sad while packing suitcases, sad while promising to return, sad in the car all the way to the airport, and sad at the airport. Never mind that this is an entirely manufactured problem that could just as easily be resolved by sticking it out, learning Spanish or Portuguese, marrying, and then getting a job.
“I don’t know,” Melyza says, a tear trickling down her cheek. “It’s almost like we totally wasted everyone’s time.”
You did, so here’s a story about Sprocket and Pickle: So the other day Pickle is hauling ass through the living room with Sprocket’s stuffed squirrel in her mouth. The plan was for Sprocket to chase her, but instead he’s shook that she’s kidnapped his baby. He sits in the middle of the living room and starts crying until she brings Squirrel back, and lays him down like, “Damn, I didn’t know it would be all of that.” Sprocket immediately puts Squirrel in front of the heater to bring him back to life, and then carries him to my lap. He starts grooming him and asking me if the little feller is gonna make it, and I say I dunno, it’s going to be touch and go for awhile. All we can do is pray. Sprocket responds by taking a nap on Squirrel’s face. This concludes the section desperate to be more interesting than Cheese and his grater.
NEXT WEEK: Jesus Christ, this season never ends, and yes, the same sort of shit continues to happen. Ari gets caught in a Christian mosh pit, Kenny and Armando are using a television as a computer screen, Drascilla is getting ideas about enlivening this wedding, Jenny and Sumit are having the same conversation, and everyone at home is considering watching Real Housewives of Potomac instead.
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