Liza isn’t going anywhere, and she won’t let her career or the people in her life slip away so easily either
To recap: Liza (Sutton Foster), who’s been dealing with the fallout of Charles’ (Peter Hermann) finding out her age, may be glad that was her only problem after facing a slew of unexpected complications thrown her way in this Younger episode. Big Little Liza begins with an online video of Caitlin (Tessa Albertson) smashing her face into bread. Maggie (Debi Mazar) thinks its erotic, but Liza sees red flags and decides to intervene. She accomplishes that easily when she reminds her daughter of the reputation she’ll make for herself. Back at Empirical, Kelsey (Hilary Duff) and Zane (Charles Michael Davis) meet with their latest author and former Obama-speechwriter, Jake, who seems to have a thing for Kelsey. He invites her a social event leading to a very steamy kiss at the end of the night. Zane warns her not to sabotage the book, but Kelsey’s confident she won’t.
Liza and Don (Christian Borle) hit it off last episode, so they take an evening stroll through Bryant Park. After Liza slips on a patch of ice, her bag empties to reveal two licenses – one for both her identities. Don has a lot of questions, so Liza tells him the truth – she pretended to be 26 to get a job, and has to keep it that way until the world stops being an ageist one. Lauren meanwhile has been planning an event through her PR firm involving edible makeup with her assistant Tam (Jesse James Keitel), Younger’s first genderfluid character. At the event, Lauren (Molly Bernard) schools Liza on the use of queer language and pronouns for the LGBTQIAPK community – some knowledge Liza will need later. First, though, she leaves the party when she gets a call from Josh (Nico Tortorella) telling her to say farewell to Inkburg.
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It turns out Josh’s landlord wants him to sign a 10-year lease or vacate, but Josh isn’t ready for more commitment. Liza gives him an impassioned speech reminding him that he’s already made a commitment to Inkburg, but he’s still convinced nothing is keeping in Brooklyn. After all, he doesn’t have Liza. More problems unfold when Liza receives a call from a call from a Vanity Fair fact checker asking confirmation of her real age for an article written by Don. The article reaches Reese Witherspoon’s people, but thanks to Liza creatively labeling herself as “age-queer,” she and Kelsey convince them that Liza isn’t really 41 – she’s just fighting age discrimination and that fact checker can think whatever she wants.
Later, she finds and Don and gives her a piece of her mind. He admits he intended to publish the article; he’s a freelance writer who needs work and laments that only middle-aged white men get discriminated against now, apparently. Liza let’s him know that maybe he can’t get a job because he’s an asshole. The next day, she sees Inkburg’s sign being taken down, so she marches up to Josh’s apartment to remind him that Inkburg is his dream. She tells him to take the lease because Brooklyn is home, and her and Kelsey and Maggie aren’t going anywhere. After strongly committing to being in his life, Josh finally lets her know that he’s not going anywhere either – he was just getting a bigger sign. They embrace, leaving Josh with a hopeful expression as the episode ends.
With everything this week wrapped up in a bow for now, let’s meet our roundtable!
Catrel (@CatrelCathey) – I love doing commentary on TV shows I watch every day. They TV shows I watch mean everything to me.
Judith (@svufanblog4015) – Film and TV enthusiast who loves to write.
Janina (@JaninaRS) – I’m a Binge watcher of TV shows, I love TV and Movies, and am also willing to do all-nighters to check out new TV shows.
Stephanie (@ASparkleFactor) – Fashion and Lifestyle Blogger at A Sparkle Factor.
Denise (@aunt_liv) – Entertainment enthusiast and marketing mogul.
1. It seems as though college students will do anything for extra cash. What was your reaction to Caitlin’s ‘Breadfacing’ video?
Catrel (@CatrelCathey): I wasn’t really paying good attention to it but if I ever become a parent, I’m literally already ready for what’s to come because of this show.
Judith (@svufanblog4015): It was so awkward to watch!
Janina (@JaninaRS): My reaction was just to laugh. When I started college all I did was take my neighbor’s dog for a walk weekly and she’d pay me $25 bucks. But breadfacing was hilarious.
Stephanie (@ASparkleFactor): Ummm…is this a real thing??? It’s definitely not as gross as I thought it would be, but it’s definitely weird.
Denise (@aunt_liv): I had never heard of that so it was both weird and disturbing! I had to replay it because I thought I had missed something.
2. Josh isn’t sure about making a 10-year long commitment to Inkburg, and considers packing everything up and getting a fresh start somewhere new. Do you think that would’ve been a drastic move?
Catrel: I think it would be a drastic move on his part because it’s like he is giving up on himself. That’s why toward the end of this episode I loved that he decided to stay for himself and the one woman he still has love for. We all witnessed the scene from him and Liza. It was so beautiful.
Judith: Yes! It shows that Josh is scared to make that kind of a big commitment. Especially in the last time where he questions so many things in his life.
Janina: Not at all, Josh can do what Josh wants to do. It’s his decision.
Stephanie: Definitely!! He’s a business owner, his business is successful and he’s a tattoo artist. Inkburg’s success is the best possible outcome for him and his career, why would he give that up?
Denise: Definitely! Josh needs a support group & to take it slow. Making big decisions while very emotional is never a good thing!
3. Younger introduced Tam, its first gender-queer character, and there are few lessons throughout out the episode on LGBTQ+ language. What do you think about the show having these conversations?
Catrel: Let me first say: Tam was bringing it. His SASS was giving me life. I love watching shows that features new found characters who can totally be comfortable playing themselves as who they are in the real world. I hope to see more of these characters like Tam on this show.
Judith: I think it’s so awesome that they have this conversation in the show!
Janina: I think the show did great showing LGBTQ+ expression, it’s a free country and we can express ourselves anyway we want.
Stephanie: Younger always has its finger on the pulse of what’s going on and isn’t afraid to talk about it, which I think is so rare and unique these days.
Denise: I think it’s brave and gives a voice to so many that often feel invisible. To reach a mass audience like Younger does & to push the boundaries like this—totally brave and I love that!
4. Kelsey and Jake’s relationship is pushing the boundaries beyond that of an editor and author, but she tells Zane she has it under control. How do you feel about this new romance?
Catrel: Kelsey has the right to do what she wants to do. She is a grown woman. I just hope in the end it won’t hurt her.
Judith: I was not surprised that it happened! Kelsey thinks she has it under control, for now, but the problems will start very soon! Because this new romance will affect also her relationship with Zane in a way!
Janina: I take back everything back I said about Zane–I’d rather have Zane and Kelsey be a couple now.
Stephanie: I think it’s cute! I like Kelsey and Jake together! I’m a little confused about why this is a sudden issue on the show though, are we forgetting about her fling with Anton Bjornberg in the first season!? AND he was married!
Denise: I’m not a fan of the Jake storyline, actually. I think the go between paints Kelsey as somewhat wild and reckless.
5. Don turned out to be a total jerk, complete with writing a Vanity Fair feature exposing Liza’s age; thankfully, Liza’s age-shaming rant got it scrapped. Did Don have a right to use her story?
Catrel: Don didn’t have a right to use Liza’s age story just because he is desperate for his next big break. Next time, Liza is definitely going to be careful.
Judith: No, she trusted him! And then she has to find out, that yet another man betrayed her that she trusted. I was so happy when she called him out on his behavior.
Janina: He had no right to do that. I had a bad feeling about Don.
Stephanie: Absolutely not! She was crystal clear on the reasons why she couldn’t come clean… he was just totally selfish. And he knew it, too.
Denise: Nope. He shouldn’t have even thought about it.
6. Although she may not always be the same person in his life, Liza promises Josh that she is committed to him. What do you think her speech at the end of the episode meant for Josh?
Catrel: Let me tell you something. That moment between them was so beautiful. I literally haven’t given up on them. I just love the way Liza was pointing to Josh’s tattoos and saying you are committed to those and yourself. That speech meant the world to him. That was definitely the reason he decided to stay. He needed to hear that.
Judith: I think she spoke about their friendship in her speech.
Janina: I guess she meant she’ll always be there for him no matter what.
Stephanie: I’m sure that Josh still thinks there is a chance for them as a couple. You could see it in his eyes. Her speech just ignited that spark into more on his end, that’s for sure.
Denise: I think it shows that they can both move out of the romantic realm and really be there for each other as friends. It was a great speech though.
7. Liza’s secret nearly came to light when Reese’s assistant caught wind of the Vanity Fair article. Are we close to Liza’s lie catching up with her and Millennial?
Catrel: I really don’t know how Liza can keep her lies up. Thad knew her secret and we all know what to happened to him. She told Josh her secret. It ended their relationship but they eventually got back together but Josh wanted something more and then she cheated. She told Kelsey her secret. It ended their friendship but she eventually forgave her and now those two can’t live without one another. Charles find out from Edward and now those two are still getting back to working well with one another.
Judith: Maybe, but aren’t we always close to the edge of Liza’s lie catching up with her and Millennial in some sort of a way?
Janina: I believe so, but I’m afraid that if her lie gets revealed to Millenial her career is over.
Stephanie: I think so. Based on everything we’ve seen lately, I think that the truth is going to come out soon and in a big way. I just hope that the WAY it comes out is that Liza uses this whole thing as fodder for her memoir, sells it to Millenial and gets ahead of the story. THAT would be the boss move. But let’s get real… it probably won’t happen that way.
Denise: I think so! I wonder what the fallout will be.
In a strong episode, we see relationships explore new territory as the stakes become higher
Josh was back in full force this week, and as his relationship with Liza transitions from romance to friendship, it’s unclear if Josh is ready to move on. There’s a strong possibility that when Josh said “I’m not ready to give up yet,” he was referring to more than just the tattoo shop. Kelsey also has her hands full, and it’ll be interesting to see how her new romance will affect Millenial’s latest acquisition and her office romance with Zane while Liza’s secret threatens her career and Millennial.
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Directed by Miriam Shor (who plays Diana Trout), and written by Ashley Skidmore, this episode was done by women and for women, while further promoting friendships and inclusivity as Younger has always strived to do. Although the episode doesn’t necessarily advance the plot or include the high-intensity moments we’ve been accustomed to this so far this season, it is full of hilarious one-liners and nuanced tension that kept our interest.
Younger returns next week and will run without any breaks for the rest of season. By the looks of it, the next episode will pick up back up with the Liza and Charles storyline as Charles was noticeably absent this week as he deals with her betrayal. And after another close call, we wonder when Liza’s secret will finally come out and what consequences might be on the horizon. Looks like we’ll have to tune in to find out!