Tuesday, June 26, 2007

"Are you appreciating the irony that we just held our revirginization ceremony in the sex shack?": Kyle XY

Was it just because I watched last night's episode in a hangover-induced fever state, or was it actually pretty good? I've been praying for some teenage hijinks since the beginning of season two, and they finally delivered. Virgins, sluts (or "chuts," a pronunciation they must have learned from Cherita Chen), cheating, underage drinking, breakups, shame - all aspects of the nightmare that is high school were present and accounted for, and every bit of it made me happy.

There were three main storylines: the high school slam list, Kyle's training with Tom Foss, and Madacorp's attempt to take care of their little Kyle problem. First the most boring: Madacorp. Shifty Madacorp Executive needs to eliminate Kyle, but the presence of the Tragers means he won't be able to do it without raising suspicion. His solution? Download artificial memories into Kyla - now called Jessi - and have her either extract the information they need from Kyle's brain or delete it altogether. I'm not quite sure on this part, possibly because I was too dumbfounded by the idea that they can download and extract memories from Kyle and Jessi's brains like computers. So gestating longer than normal humans makes your brain not just powerful, but computer-like? The fake science on this show is confusing and inconsistent. The best part about this storyline is that Jessi now believes she is bounty hunter Emily Hollander's sister, and will start to assimilate with the teen crowd. Seeing as she seemingly accidentally still remembers the scary time before the download, this should make for some interesting future events.

In Tom Foss land, the lesson of the week is "mind over matter." Foss believes that Kyle can do anything as long as he tricks his mind into thinking he can, and wants him to test that theory by learning to walk on coals. I used to work in reality TV, and on one of our shows we had a ten-year-old walk on coals so I'm not quite sure what this daring feat will prove, but whatever. Kyle's initial failure at this endeavor (wuss!) causes him to completely melt down, and he comes to the realization that he doesn't want to be special, he wants to be normal. Kyle, Clark Kent and Peter Parker should get together and have a big emo-fest over that one. And then they can talk about how they are strangely attracted to their (male) best friends. Anyway, in the end the lesson of "mind over matter" finally hits home as Kyle uses his abilities to save a girl from burning to death. He emerges without being burned, which doesn't go unnoticed by mom Nicole. I think only good things can come of Nicole knowing that Kyle is truly special. Theirs is my favorite relationship and this will only add to the richness as they struggle to keep his secret from the rest of the family.

The meat of this week's episode, however, was blissfully consumed by the teen set. Every year at the beginning of school, a group of kids puts out a slam list: biggest slut, biggest nerd, etc. Confirmed slut Hillary (yay, Hillary!) is determined not to carry the title two years in a row, and decides to revirginize herself. Lori, in the midst of a pretty brutal breakup with Declan, agrees to do it as well. This leads to some pretty darn hilarious scenes at a rager of a bonfire where they get drunk and swear off sex for good, but not before they ask poor little virgin Amanda what "her people do for fun." Snort. Unfortunately, though, it looks like Amanda is ready to give it up to longtime boyfriend Charlie, still not knowing he is regularly getting some on the side from every skank in school (Hillary included). Kyle finds out about this and is determined to tell Amanda the truth. Before he can tell her, though, the slam list comes out and guess who is listed as biggest slut? Ding ding ding, none other than skanky Charlie! Poor little virgin Amanda calls him out in front of the whole school, and it's about as painful as you would imagine. Kyle doesn't come out unscathed, as Amanda blames him for not telling her sooner. Looks like it won't be smooth sailing for them.

Seriously, you guys, that's what I'm talking about! I know I am biased because I'm a whore for teen drama, but every moment of it this week was spot-on. I love how they always manage to do familiar stories without making them seem trite or hackneyed. I also love how the teenagers are realistic. They drink, go to parties, some have sex, some don't, and it all seems so natural. Okay, so a popular band didn't play any of my high school parties, but I grew up in a hick town in Florida. We had parties hidden in the woods, huddled around a trash can fire. Maybe it's different in Seattle. Also, the balance was right on this week. The scenes with Madacorp and Foss fit in so much better because they were supporting the family drama and not overpowering it, and the twist in the Jessi/Kyla storyline was a welcome one. I wondered how they would work her into the teen set, and I think this is a great way to do it. If the season continues like this, I will be one pleased reviewer.

Random thoughts:
- Sour Patch Kid sightings: 1. The creative ways the find to stick product placement in each episode is endlessly entertaining to me. It's so ingrained into the fiber of the show that it seems unnatural when they don't do it.

- The episode title was "The List is Life," a Schindler's List reference that makes me more than uncomfortable seeing that the list in question is a high school slam list and not, you know a list of people being freed from certain death. Maybe it was accidental. Maybe I'm just too sensitive about the systematic murder of an entire race of people. I don't know.

- I know I go on about this every week, but really. What is up with Declan? Are they going to actually out him as gay and in love with Kyle? His obsession with Kyle is getting out of control. I can't be the only one who sees it like this.

1 comment:

page said...

I don't think it was your hangover, I too thought this was a great episode. I laughed my ass off over the re-virginization. The episode was fun. The mix of quasi-scifi and teen drama was just right. No, you are not alone in the Declan thing, it's sooo funny, I love it. Here's my thing. I'm used to preternaturally mature high schoolers (peyton on oth looked positively menopausal this season) but Lori seriously looks like 5 years older than me. It's distracting.