Parenthood Recap: A Brand New Year Of Bravermans
Here, for your reading pleasure, is your first Parenthood recap of 2014. Last we saw the Bravermans way back in 2013, Mille headed to Italy for her Phase Three solo act, Hank and Max’s working friendship continued, Ed laid some tongue on Julia, Amy showed up at Drew’s dorm to hang visit, and Sarah and her hot tenant Carl had sex and promised to never to do it again.
So Natalie (Lyndon Smith) stops by for her drunk fuck-buddy schtick at Drew’s (Miles Heizer) dorm room to find Drew’s ex-girlfriend and first love Amy (Skyler Day) in his room playing cards with him on his bed—and by playing cards we, of course, mean playing cards. It’s cordial, but weird, and Natalie leaves.
Days later, the three of them sprawl out on the lawn to chat and Natalie creeps into Drew’s lap to spray her territory while smiling and acting like everything is totally normal. Later, Amy gets around to asking Drew about whether his dorm friend is jealous. “We’re friends,” he assures her a little drunkenly with a sheepish smile.
And finally, Drew has the upper hand over these mean little girls. Amy basically puts it all out there, apologizing and saying she dreams of a do-over. He forgives, they make out and just like that, Drew finds new meaning to the phrase getting screwed
Amy decides to stay, and things finally start to work out for Drew, who has no game but apparently somehow still has chicks fighting over him. It must be the hair. Woohoo Drew!
Hot Carl (Josh Stamberg) stops by Sarah’s (Lauren Graham) apartment to NOT have sex with her, but instead to invite her as his plus one to a fancy charity event because he has sized her up to NOT be the kind of plus one who will drink too many cosmos and puke in the shower. His sweet talk works. She’s in.
Sarah searches for a formal dress in sister-in-law Jasmine’s (Joy Bryant) closet while Jasmine starts Googling her ass off to find out just what ol’ Carl is all about. Turns out, he’s a big falutin’ CEO and board certified doctor who saves sickly, little babies. And that is when Sarah decides to up her game.
So it turns out that sleazy, Hot Carl is a fabulous humanitarian and receiver of a very wonderful award for being wonderful, to which he graciously accepts and gives the credit to his staff. (Ladies, don’t get your hopes up rethinking that douchebag you dumped. He’s not a fabulous humanitarian. This is TV.)
Then it’s the awkward moment at the door where they discuss the difference between a date and a plus one. And Carl, who has been told many times that Sarah would not be sleeping with him anymore, cheekily slaps his ass as he heads for the stairs to let her know what she’s missing.
Julia and Joel (and Ed)
Julia (Erika Christensen) crosses paths with Ed (David Denman) at the school and quickly shuffles away, only to have Ed reel her in for the awkward apology. A couple of days later, she asks Adam (Peter Krause) if the kids can stay over while she heads to the school’s auction fundraiser. It takes about two seconds for Adam to size her up and figure out something’s awry.
“There’s this guy,” Julia starts as she lays it all out on the line, even the sordid extra-marital kiss with Ed. Adam empathizes, telling her about the assistant who laid one on him way, way back and whom he didn’t kiss back. He told Kristina (Monica Potter), and they worked through it, if you recall.
“Maybe this is different,” Julia says through tears, explaining her marriage is crumbling. Joel (Sam Jaeger) doesn’t look at her anymore, and they’re not on the same page. It’s all a disaster.
And, not surprisingly, he gives some pretty good advice. “Whatever is feeling good right now about Ed is just related to how things are feeling with Joel,” he says. “It’s not worth it.” He advises couples therapy and gives a hug. “You didn’t do anything wrong.” We wish Adam could be our big brother.
Then he goes over to pick up nephew Jabbar (Tyree Brown) for the Big Braverman Sleepover (now we really wish he was our big brother because he even takes other people’s children) and immediately tells Crosby (Dax Shepard) about the whole Ed and Julia thing, including the smoocheroo.
Crosby, who attends the school fundraiser, keeps a keen eye on Ed, who shows up drunk and sloppy. Crosby and Joel both see Ed confront Julia and shit goes down. Joel confronts Ed, tells him to “call it a night,” and when he doesn’t Joel shoves Ed down on the floor. Crosby cleans up the mess.
Joel confronts Julia outside the event and asks if she’s having an affair with Ed. “If there is anything going on, you have to tell me,” he says. And then she totally lies, and he totally doesn’t believe her. She gives him the keys and takes a cab.
Max and Hank
Hank (Ray Romano) and Max (Max Burkholder) were planning to develop the latter’s photographs at the studio, but Hank had to do a last minute reshoot instead. As we know, Max melts down when plans change, like the time he ran away because his parents and his sister took him to the museum as planned. You ’member.
Hank is new to this Asperger’s thing though, so it’s something we’re going to watch all over again. “You lied,” he screams and starts throwing equipment. “Screw you Hank!” He runs out of the studio, heads home and freaks the eff out. Hank follows in pursuit till they get to Max’s house.
“Sonofabitch he’s fast,” Hank says, gasping for breath when it’s all said and done.
Adam shows up days later to apologize to Hank and explain the sitch. “He got it into his head that you lied to him,” Adam says, which is irrational and frustrating, he knows. Adam tries to give him a book about Aspies, but Hank says hey, no reading required, it’s cool. He likes Max.
And then he reads the book and goes batshit. He shows up at Sarah’s door flustered. “I need a drink,” he says. “I’ve been up all night.” And this is the point in the story when Hank realizes he has been living with Asperger’s undiagnosed his entire life. He’s an Aspie too, which is pretty hard news in your 50s.
Hank starts questioning everything, wondering if all the people who he thinks are assholes are actually quite nice, and whether, gasp, he is the hole in the ass.
Hank returns the book and visits Max. They chat about Max’s photos, and then Max apologizes in his own way. And they’re good.
Zeek and Camille
Zeek (Craig T. Nelson) is still on his own as Camille (Bonnie Bedilia) is away painting in Italy and eating delicious pasta. Zeek on the other hand is eating cereal with clumpy, putrid milk. She lets him know she’s considering extending her trip another week to head to a friend’s place in Tuscany to paint.
Zeek heads to the lonely man counter at a local diner where he meets a new frenemy, Rocky, who won’t shut up. Zeek lets him know he’s not much of a talker. And it gets awkward.
Yet, he goes back. Same dude is there. “Niners,” Zeek says moments after sitting down, reluctantly giving in to the decorum required by lonely men at the diner counters.
They get right down to it, telling each other how much they don’t like one another even though they have much in common. Zeek puts out his hand, they shake, and get on with it over BLTs.
They end up playing pool and giving each other a little marital history. Rocky, a widower, doesn’t have much pity for grumpy, lonely Zeek, letting him know that if his dead wife had wanted him to take a trip to Italy he would have beat her to the airport.
Zeek sends Camille an email telling her to stay the extra week. He, too, wants to stop being a hole in the ass.
Tune into NBC Thursday, Jan. 9, at 10 p.m. to pick up where we left off with all the Braverman marital issues.