Younger has taken a huge leap into Season 5.
Memorial Day has passed and season 5 of TV Land’s Younger has arrived! We return back to New York after Liza (Sutton Foster) has returned back from what you could call the most memorable trip to Ireland in the worst way possible. Spoiler alert! Remember that line that ripped your heart out in last seasons’ finale when Josh (Nico Tortorella) said ‘I need to put a ring between us? Well, he did. That actually happened. Josh went through with the wedding and to the dismay of everyone who was ‘#TeamJosh’, it looks like that ship has sailed.
When Liza returned from her trip, Kelsey (Hilary Duff) comes to her rescue to…ask her why she didn’t stop the wedding. However, there were much larger problems at hand. Liza gets a message from Charles (Peter Hermann) that he needs to see her in his office ASAP. Well, what could it be? Liza went into his office convinced the ‘talk’ was going to be about what has clearly been going on between them and goes off in word vomit about how she can’t be in the way of him and his wife fixing things if that’s what he wants. And she was mistaken–highly.
Charles pretends like he didn’t hear a word she said and lets her know that Empirical Press is going to publish a prequel to his Game of Thrones-esque book Crown of Kings, and wants to know if he ever did anything creepy to her. She assures Charles, Diana (Miriam Shor), and Zane (Charles Michael Davis) that he’s just a flirty old man and they move on with an HR meeting about sexual harassment in the workplace, as one company should do.
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What happened next is where it gets interesting. Pauline, Charles’ ex-wife shows up to open her books Marriage Vacation when Kelsey realizes that Pauline’s book is printed under Empirical Press and not Millennial Print and has a fantastic ‘just because I’m a millennial doesn’t mean I shouldn’t be taken seriously’ moment. Turns out it was Zane’s doing but he takes Kelsey to a huge Pam Pam billboard in Times Square. TBA on if that charm of his actually worked.
Finally, it was time for everyone’s favorite sweaty event – Comic-Con, for the Pam Pam Chronicles launch. Liza has to wear that awful furry bikini again along with all of the former Pam Pams. It was here that we’ve gotten to Liza’s #MeToo moment where she realizes that there have been several others that have accused Moore of harassment. Then as L. L. Moore was being lowered from the ceiling in what was supposed to be the big reveal, Charles gets on stage and announces that Empirical will not be publishing The Pam Pam Chronicles due to harassment allegations. Everyone, including Pauline, then gather back in Times Square to reveal that the billboard has changed from Pam Pam to Marriage Vacation now under Millennial Print! Take that, society.
We’ve now arrived at what we will definitely call the biggest twist of the series. Out of retaliation, Edward L. L. Moore comes barging into Charles’ office after telling him he wants to meet ASAP. Moore meets Charles in his office with a bunch of folders of Pam Pam’s that accused him and BAM BAM – he pulls out a copy of Liza’s birth certificate and marriage license!! You know, the one that says she’s a 40-something divorcé!
With all of this in mind, it’s time to unpack it all. Let’s meet our roundtable!
Marily (@marily2500) – I listen to music, read books and watch a lot of TV shows.
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.
Judith (@svufanblog4015) – Film and TV enthusiast who loves to write.
Denise (@aunt_liv) – Entertainment enthusiast and marketing mogul.
1. Let’s get this out of the way so that everyone knows where you stand. Are you Team Josh or Team Charles, and has your opinion changed at all between last season and this week’s premiere?
Marily (@marily2500): My opinion definitely hasn’t changed. Team Charles all the way. I really love Josh and at one point I was Team Josh but Charles has won over my heart and I’m sure that he’s the perfect match for Liza.
Janina (@JaninaRS): Team Charles obviously my opinion has not changed at all. At the beginning of season 1 I was team Josh until he cheated FIRST on Liza, and then I saw Charles. (Cue heart eyes emoji).
Stephanie (@ASparkleFactor): Oh, I am #TEAMCHARLES all day, every day! Since their first interaction in Diana’s office, I’ve thought there’s no denying the sparks between them, and every interaction since has just built on that. I’ve always seen the “appeal” of Josh and he was a really important step to Liza finding her true self…but I think it’s been pretty obvious since day one that Charles is her soulmate and that they’re destined to be together!
Judith (@svufanblog4015): Team Charles from the beginning! And it hasn’t changed between the seasons.
Denise (@aunt_liv): Team Charles since the beginning. My opinion hasn’t changed at all. I think the chemistry between Peter Herman & Sutton Foster is so palpable that it really translates into the characters.
2. The premiere kicks off after Liza has just returned from that, let’s say—unexpected trip to Ireland and Kelsey wouldn’t stop bothering her about why she didn’t stop what happened. After you’ve had some time to think about it, do you think Liza should have stopped Josh’s wedding?
Marily: Personally I think Liza shouldn’t have stopped Josh’s wedding. Josh made the decision to marry Claire. As Josh’s friend Liza should always support him.
Janina: No way, I think Liza did what she thought was right. My guess was that she wanted to be free and be with Charles. Plus, Josh is not mature enough for Liza, he’s like a teenage boy still.
Stephanie: Absolutely not!! It really wasn’t her place! They’ve long since broken up and he obviously still has feelings for her… but she doesn’t want him and she knows he isn’t “The One”. I think that he definitely acted impulsively and it’s a huge mistake for him to have married Clare, but it’s his mistake to make. If she wanted to be with him and felt he was “The One”, then she should’ve said something. But since she doesn’t want to be with him? No way, it would have been crazy selfish of her to do that.
Judith: Not at all, Liza let him go because she knows that she can’t give him the life that he wants right now. The whole getting married and have kids thing, is something that is not an option for Liza right now.
Denise: No, he’s an adult & makes his own decisions. Liza decided to lie about her age & she’s accepted the consequences that have come with that. I think Josh has to do the same.
3. Liza is asked to speak with Charles in his office, except found different reasons than what she expected. What did you think of that awkward encounter?
Marily: It was so awkward omg!! But I felt that it was important that Liza tell him how she feels as well and that way there’s no misconception. Charles now knows how Liza feels and Liza knows how Charles feels. Now, all we have to do is wait for one of them to make a move.
Janina: It felt very awkward at the beginning. I did feel the same way as Liza and I thought he wanted to talk to her about what happened in the office. I loved Liza’s “OH” moment.
Stephanie: SO CRINGE! (But Charles was REALLY vague, I can see how Liza would’ve misinterpreted what he was asking…I know I did!)
Judith: It was awkward in the beginning for sure. But I had the same feeling as Liza, that he wanted to talk about what happened between them in the office back then.
Denise: I thought this was rather funny and amusing. It really gave Liza a chance to get some of her thoughts out there with Charles.
4. It seems like things with Kelsey and Liza are back on track. However, do you think there is still resentment from Kelsey about the huger than Manhattan lie about her age?
Marily: I don’t think there’s resentment from Kelsey. Obviously, it’s hard to comprehend and to understand why Liza lied about her age. But age is just a number. I don’t think it would ruin their friendship.
Janina: Not at all. Liza and Kelsey have practically been BFFs since day one.
Stephanie: Totally. Kelsey is now complicit in Liza’s lie and I don’t think she’s too happy about that.
Judith: Not all! Kelsey knows why Liza did it!
Denise: I think more of an understanding as Kelsey has kept some hidden secrets to herself. I think Kelsey has grown a little bit throughout the season & realizes that sometimes life isn’t always black & white.
5. Zane and Kelsey clearly still have something going on. What are your thoughts on them and do you think this will end badly?
Marily: I don’t really ship them but I can see Zane is trying on his part to be more kind. Even though Kelsey is not reciprocating that back. I think Kelsey is growing as a person. She’s experienced so much during the show and I’d like to believe that she and Zane could work things out and figure out how they can work together at Empirical.
Janina: I’m not too fond of Zane. He was kind of shady to Kelsey last season. Let’s just say he’s not my fav.
Stephanie: I can’t decide how I feel about Zane! On one hand, I totally get it. He’s good-looking, he’s confident, he’s flirty… their dynamic is super hot. I like that he sort of challenges her! But I have to admit—I don’t like him at work. He undermines Kelsey whenever he can, goes behind her back, tries to steal or take credit for her work… and then mansplains when she calls him out? Acts like she’s crazy for being upset? I don’t know. Stealing L.L. Moore was gross. I hated the way he took credit for the Marriage Vacation GMA interview and then how he acted on set. I don’t know how I think it’ll end. I think they’ll have a rocky road but he’ll turn into a “good guy” then he’ll somehow end up being “The One” for her.
Judith: Kelsey and Zane are headstrong persons, and that can cause some problems for them. But I think personally that is why they are attracted to each other. I’m not sure how this ends between them, but I don’t think it will be pretty.
Denise: I think when competition is mixed with emotions and a workplace, something is bound to explode. Can’t wait to see how that plays out.
6. The real reason Charles asked Liza to his office, you know, during that awkward moment, was actually referring to sexual harassment claims made by multiple women against Edward L. L. Moore, that creepy author with a bit of a Liza obsession. What did you think of the way that the show confronted it’s own #MeToo movement?
Marily: I think it’s amazing that they incorporated into the show. Personally, I found L. L. Moore’s behavior towards Liza creepy. And I’m glad it was addressed in the show and not just shrugged off. It’s also important that they share this movement. #TimesUp
Janina: It was amazing! Because not only did Liza accuse him but other women did too. I loved that they had #MeToo on the show because it will motivate other women to speak up.
Stephanie: I think it was important for the writers to address the elephant of the room… technically, Liza and Charles’ relationship does have a sort of murky side to it; he’s her boss, she’s supposedly a 27-year-old assistant – a lot of what’s happened between them could be interpreted in a less than romantic way. The writing team decided to tackle the whole #MeToo movement and it would definitely have been hypocritical for them to ignore the power dynamics in Liza and Charles’ relationship. I think they really needed to “clear the air” and address that.
Judith: I think it was awesome how they did it. Especially that the women spoke and let their voice be heard. We can’t tolerate a man (L.L Moore ) that behaviors like that. #TimesUp
Denise: I think this blended real-world issues and fictional storylines beautifully. Showcasing behaviors—especially horrible ones like that—can help so many people and hopefully make a change. Before anyone can make changes you have to acknowledge problems & issues. I think the Younger writers really did well with this.
7. The premiere ended with possibly the biggest bombshell of the series to date when Charles found out about the one huge secret Liza was trying to keep, thanks to L. L. Moore in an act of retaliation. What do you think will be the fallout from this, and do you think things will ever be the same again?
Marily: OMG honestly I have no idea what’s gonna happen next. I really hope Charles gives Liza a chance to explain herself but also hope he understands why she did it.
Janina: Well here’s what I mentioned to several people. Last season when they almost had their moment when Liza tells Charles “I have to tell you something” and Charles tells her “don’t talk all we do is talk” I think she was about to tell him her age. I think he’ll be mad at her for a while after they talk it out everything will be back to the way it was.
Stephanie: OH. EM. GEE. I was SHOOK! Honestly, I knew it was coming. It had to come out, but I have to admit, I was surprised HOW it came out. I totally fell for the red herring and thought that Lawyer Bob was going to be the one to blow up Liza’s spot! I think Charles will be hurt, angry, shocked, blindsided… but I think he will ultimately come around. This changes everything for them! His main reservations for a long time were about her being so young. The fact that they’re the same age sort of levels the field in a lot of ways! He’s always referred to her as an “old soul”, so I think that now maybe a lot of things that maybe she has said or done in the past will make more sense to him now. This revelation really paves the way for them to finally have a real shot! They can’t start out based on a lie, so now, they have a real chance at something real and I’m PUMPED!
Judith: It will take some time for Charles to processes everything that he heard from L.L Moore. He will be mad at her for a while because he will question everything that ever happened between them. What was real and what was fake? Is the biggest question on his mind right now.
Denise: I was really surprised they chose to reveal that the way they did. I think it’s going to take Charles awhile to trust Liza. It’s going to be interesting to see how they come back from this & how they move forward. The journey for Charles & Liza has always been complicated. I mean, a crane fell on a guy who knew the truth in the early seasons so who knows what else the writers will come up with. I think Liza may try to quit or take a break for awhile to gather herself. The fallout with Diana is going to be interesting as well—does she feel betrayed by Liza or do they come together in solidarity and support as women since they really have a lot in common?
And there it is, the twist of all twists.
Overall, season 5 came out of the gates swinging. It seemed like that was the one twist that would remain hidden until the end of the series when it came time for it, but nope! (And we love it). Charles finding out that Liza is actually right close to the same age as him will completely change the show and dynamic between them. Josh hasn’t even returned back from Ireland yet and it’s like Liza hasn’t thought about him for a minute since.
This week addressed its own powerful #MeToo moment with the case of L. L. Moore and his Pam Pam Chronicles. It was the perfect way for the series to start its fifth season with an issue that has become so relevant and important to discuss in media today.
What can we look forward to next week? Hopefully, Charles will reveal to Liza that he knows but based on interviews with the cast, it seems like Liza is a long way from finding out that Charles knows. However, will make for some very entertaining television from the witty show you know and love. Charles has a lot of thinking to do and like our roundtable guests said, is going to question everything and everything.