Incredibly on-point political commentary.
Laugh out loud funny.
Cry out loud devastating.
This was the last episode for a while.
Immigration officers, terminal illnesses, and boyfriend/girlfriend switcheroos. What, is that not how your prom went?
In The Fosters 5×09 it’s Prom Night, and everyone is busy. No, not that kind of busy. This isn’t your average prom. Rather than obsessing over Prom Queens and after parties, these kids are dealing with immigration officers and cancer. Yep, it’s a doozy. But did we really expect anything less? It’s a Fosters summer finale, after all.
While Stef (Teri Polo) chaperones, Brandon (David Lambert) ensures that Grace will have the best prom ever. Callie (Maia Mitchell) heads to the dance floor with Aaron, who’s actually becoming a total jerk. Mariana (Cierra Ramirez) is trying to avoid the wrath of Logan’s girlfriend by pretending to have a boyfriend. And then a girlfriend. It’s a mess. Jesus (Noah Centineo) regrets his breakup with Emma (Amanda Leighton) and Jude (Hayden Byerly).. well, Jude’s just sorta hanging out at home.
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The Fosters excels when it keeps its core cast in a singular setting, and “Prom” is a great example of why. Each character is able to have his or her own thing going on while still interacting with and participating in each other’s stories. For instance, Jesus spends his Prom missing Emma, who spends her Prom helping Mariana. Stef is also there chaperoning and dealing with Tess’s childhood feelings. Despite their various storylines, all four characters hilariously intersect when first, Stef witnesses Mariana and Emma kiss and expresses her confusion, and secondly, Jesus sees his twin sister slow dancing with his ex-girlfriend. It’s messy, and fun, and classic Fosters.
That huge twist that no one could see coming
Grace is dying. Man, who could’ve predicted that? In all seriousness, here’s what went down: Brandon has a candid discussion with Grace’s mom, who informs him that her daughter has leukemia. Obviously heartbroken, and unable to tell Grace he knows, Brandon decides there is only one thing to do. He ensures that Grace gets the fairy tale Prom of a lifetime, before her lifetime ends. He spends the night treating her like a princess (literally – he gives her a crown) and basically being boyfriend goals. Their story ends more calmly than others, with the two of them laying in bed. It’s not the post-prom bedtime that many imagine, but for them it’s perfect. They talk about their future plans, and Coachella, and Grace wants Brandon to promise he will go if she can’t make it. He assures her that they’ll go together.
“We’ll go together.” -Brandon
Okay, we’re crying. Why does The Fosters hate us? We were just fine before Grace came along but we certainly won’t be okay if she leaves us. We love her. And Brandon does too – doesn’t he deserve happiness? He certainly doesn’t deserve to lose his girlfriend at such a young age. We have a lot of feelings about this. But as much as it breaks our heart, it sure is good storytelling. Grace’s story is relatively fresh, which is a great thing for the Fosters in it’s fifth season.
Dang, Fosters, back at it again with the impeccable timing!
Always relevant, The Fosters deals with immigration this week. More specifically, it deals with the teenaged daughter of undocumented immigrants. Ximena and Callie finally implement their planned protest at the school, but things don’t go well. Violence breaks out and Callie, who has promised to stay safe, quickly escapes. Ximena sticks around, proudly proclaiming her status as undocumented. This later comes back to haunt her, when ICE (Immigration and Customs Inforcement) shows up at prom for her. Callie helps her escape, and we end the season with the two of them (and AJ) hiding from the agents in a church.
“All over the country, people like me are scared. That is not my America.” -Ximena
The Fosters has always tackled relevant issues head on, but this season was something more. The Fosters managed to air relevant episodes with such impeccable precision, we’re wondering where they found their crystal ball. First, an episode focusing on the difference between free and hate speech aired in the days following the Charlottesville violence. A coincidence, surely, but a powerful one. But who could’ve predicted President Trump’s attack on DACA, and DREAMers, that occurred the very day this episode of The Fosters aired. While many DREAMers across the country suddenly found themselves fearing deportation, they saw their nightmares come true for Ximena. For those who don’t know, DACA stands for “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals” and protects children who immigrate at a young age from deportation. That is precisely the category Ximena would fall under, and the timing of this episode is nothing short of breathtaking.
On the lighter side of things, Mariana and Emma (Memma? Emmiana?) is our new favorite ‘ship.’
Mariana made things way messier than they needed to be this week (shocking, right?) but it was delightful. First, Logan’s girlfriend shows up and man, that is one passive agressive young lady. Mariana suddenly felt the need to protect herself (as did we, if we’re being honest) so she enlists Wyatt’s help. (You read that right, Wyatt is back. It was a big night.) Anyway, Wyatt is going to be her fake boyfriend so the hopefully-not-future-Mrs.Logan will get off of Mariana’s back. That backfires, though, when Wyatt shows up to prom so drunk and stoned that he simply just won’t do. On to plan B. Find a new boyfriend. Plan B quickly evolves into Plan C when Emma suggests that maybe Mariana’s boyfriend isn’t a boy at all. It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, but hey, it works. Mariana and Emma take their genius plan up to Logan and his girlfriend, where they proceed to completely sell the whole charade with a kiss. When Jesus later sees them slow dancing, he is incredibly confused, but quickly moves past it as he and Emma reconcile with a kiss of their own.
“Is your girlfriend kissing your brother…?”
We’re mostly kidding about the shipping thing, but in another life, we could totally see it. Maybe if Emma wasn’t literally Mariana’s twin brother’s ex-girlfriend. It’s messy. Which is precisely the sentiment expressed by Stef, as the camera revealed her shocked and disgusted reaction to Mariana and Emma’s kiss. It was undoubtedly the highlight of the night, and provided some much needed laughs among all the dying and deportation.
The storyline actually worked out very well for both ladies. Emma is now back with Jesus, and Mariana ended the episode in a promising dance with Mat. There’s more drama headed her way, though, because her mysterious texter turned out to be none other than Nick! Go away, Nick.
Final Verdict: The Fosters was hysterical, heartbreaking, and high-stress all at the same time. And we loved every single second.
Okay, so the twist was a little predictable. So what? It doesn’t at all detract from the significance of it. Whether you saw this coming or not, we’re most likely going to have Brandon losing a valuable part of his life soon. That’s going to have huge repercussions for him, and will affect his relationship with his family and his future romantic partners. We can only hope that somehow Grace beats the odds and comes out of this thing A-OK, living on to do all of the things that scare her.
The only slight nitpick we have is with Tess’s storyline this week. She reveals that she may actually be gay after all, and is fighting with her husband. Sure, alright. But why reveal this at the school dance? And is it still impossible to say the word “bisexual” on television? Tess’s feelings for Stef don’t negate her feelings for her husband, and we hope The Fosters acknowledges that.
The scene stealer this week was a given. Teri Polo stole the entire episode with one singular scene. Her reaction to Emma and Mariana’s kiss was so iconic that it’s mentioned three times in this review. Something tells us we will be seeing that face pop up in reaction to all kinds of things across the internet.
That’s it for The Fosters 5A, and we have so many questions. The wait for the winter premiere seems impossible, especially when the fates of so many characters are up in the air. Firstly, Ximena, AJ, and Callie are hiding in a church from the police and ICE! It’s hard to imagine how that could possibly turn out alright. We also have Grace to worry about, and Brandon for that matter. And Nick is contacting Mariana! That can’t be good, either. What a mess our favorite family has found themselves in. If only we could borrow The Fosters’ writers crystal ball!
Questions and Comments:
- How will Callie, Ximena, and AJ make it out of that church?
- Once they do, how will things be between Callie and Aaron?
- Is Grace really going to die?
- How is Brandon going to handle it, if she does?
- Will Jesus’s TBI start to get better next season?
- What does Nick want?
- What are we supposed to do with our Tuesday nights?
THE FOSTERS returns THIS WINTER on FREEFORM.
‘The Fosters’ Review: [5×09] – “Prom”