Episode 114: “Tough Love”
THERE ARE SPOILERS AHEAD!
[Photos: Ben Mark Holzberg/The CW]
More stupidity this week, so let’s continue last week’s fun counting game, want to? But I end with the payoff from which I know most of you are still recovering. First, take a deep breath.
Frazzled from their encounter with Heather, Vincent and Cat collect themselves on the roof of Cat’s apartment building. For normal people, seeing your sister’s on-again, off-again boyfriend for the first time wouldn’t be that big of a deal, but Heather is such a nosy nuisance (I realize that this is a characteristic and not an action, but it’s my party…#1), Cat and Vincent have to plan. These two decide the story is the dark-haired hunk smoldering in the living room was just a random guy that Cat picked up at a bar, because that’s the kind of girl Cat is. Right. #2.
Even ditsy Heather doesn’t buy the bar pickup story. She remembers Cat dancing with Vincent at the wedding. Writers of B&TB, you get #3 for this one, because come on! If Heather had seen that, she’d have already grilled Catherine about; she has no mouth control! Heather connects the dots all the way: living room guy = wedding guy = Vincent Zalanski = ass. Not too bad for a girl whose deepest thought usually involves what shade of lipstick to apply. After assuring Cat that she’s not going to grill Vincent and that she’s on Cat’s side, she bullies Cat into agreeing to have Vincent over for dinner, just the three of them. You know, Cat, you could very well have put that pushy nuisance back in her place. That’s #4 for rolling over.
At Vincent’s, Cat asks Vincent to play along, mostly so he can visit their apartment in the future without weirdness. Vincent and Cat almost sneak in that kiss, before J.T. (God love him) lumbers in and interrupts. Cat verifies Vincent will be at her place that evening, and takes off. Vincent shows up as arranged, and it’s miserable from the get-go, primarily because Heather does everything in her power to break every agreement she made. She dresses up when it was agreed it would be a casual dinner. She gives Vincent the third degree, when she promised not to grill him. Darius shows up to join them, when Heather agreed it’d just be the three of them. Manipulative, dishonest, and disrespectful = #5. The upside is Vincent’s stated reason for going back to his ex is that his intense feelings for Cat frightened him; that’s a reason that most women can palate.
Things worsen when Darius asks Vincent about the scar on his face (that’s not something you ask the first time you meet someone, #6), and when Heather mentions a picture of Vincent from the wedding reception. Vincent panics a bit and tries to sneak into Heather’s room to find the picture, but Heather busts him. Why didn’t you just wait for Cat to take care of that, Vincent? That goes down as #6, particularly as Heather now labels Vincent persona non grata.
Next day at the station, Tess and Heather corner Cat in an interrogation room to share what they’ve uncovered, i.e., that Vincent doesn’t exist, at least in normal government databases. Cat tries to convince her two besties that Vincent’s personal issues are personal and non-toxic, but they don’t buy it. The conversation evolves into a mandate: Cat either picks her girls or she picks Vincent, but she cannot have both. Cat asks why she should have to pick at all, and I totally agree with her. This is a bad, wrong move: you don’t ever make some pick between you and someone else, even when you don’t agree with the choices they’re making. Stupidity #7.
At the party to honor Joe for his leadership and integrity (ahem), Cat asks Heather for the flash drive with the digital copy of the wedding picture. She also requests that Heather never post a picture of Vincent again. Heather immediately assumes he’s a criminal; Heather, don’t you think that in Cat’s line of work, someone suspicious is much more likely to be in witness protection? Why can’t you give Cat the benefit of the doubt (#8). Heather says she can’t just stay out of it and let Cat ruin her life (sigh, not your business, #9), and accuses Cat of not knowing how to be normal. When did being normal become a requirement of being a sister? Apparently, it did somewhere along the way (my sister and I have some work to do apparently), because Heather states she’s moving out (#10) as she hands over the flash drive.
Heather leaves the party (that she planned, so professional) in a huff with Darius. Worried that Muirfield might have found the picture while it was briefly on-line before J.T. deleted it, Cat frantically calls Heather repeatedly, who refuses to answer. Cat reviews the camera footage from around the station, and discovers that Darius and Heather were followed by two men in a black SUV. Vincent traces Heather’s cell phone to a club, where Cat manages to find her. Heather assures her the guys in the SUV are friends of Darius. Relieved, Cat asks Heather not to move out, and agrees to (fake) break up with Vincent who has conveniently arrived just in time. The fake breakup results in a real conversation about whether the breakup should just be pretend.
Meanwhile, Heather seeks Darius out only to discover he’s getting the snot beat out of him in his office by the Eastern European mob friends to whom Darius owes money (#11). Heather opens her big fat mouth about having a cop sister (#12), so they decide to have Darius kill her. Although he has the decency to muster a teardrop, Darius appears to go along with the plan. Vincent saves the day by jumping into the fracas, but unintentionally kills Darius. Too bad Heather was so focused on Vincent that she never realized that Darius was the deadbeat.
They return to the station so Heather can provide a statement, but Evan wants to talk to Cat. The claw marks on Darius’ chest are “proof” that Beast isn’t just focusing on criminals, at least to Evan’s eyes. He beseeches Cat to see the danger he sees, but Cat refuses. That clinches a decision for Evan. Having received an offer earlier from head bad guy to join the Muirfield team to capture the creature, Evan buzzes into what’s presumably a Muirfield office to make it official.
Back at their apartment, Cat tucks Heather in, and meets Vincent on the roof. He feebly attempts to break things off. He wants Cat to have normalcy, Cat protests that Vincent is her normal, and finally, we get what we’ve waited for: Vincent shuts Cat up with the most decent first kiss I recall seeing between two characters. I mean, yeah, it’s hot. It’s got all the requisites: he’s touching her face, holding the back of her neck, pressing her closer with his hand on the small of her back. And he’s kissing her with just the right amount of passion; any more passion, and it would have been too raunchy, like Vincent was after a wham bam. Any less passion, and all the lead-up to this would have seemed less credible.
Vincent’s last line, “I am so in love with you,”…wow. Let me give you men a little lesson in female mindset. We get that most of you have had your poor little hearts broken at some point in your lives and you’ve never completely recovered. We also get that you’re afraid of commitment, and that you’re genetically predisposed always to be looking for someone younger, smarter, bigger boobs, smaller butt, whatever. We know you worry your buddies might think you’re a chump for letting some chick weasel her way into your heart. But we also know that when you overcome all that bull crap and let down your guard, when you’re exposed and there with us and for us and connected to us, you are realest and best version of yourself. That is when men are magnificent and truly, their most virile and desirable. A lot of women chase that heady feeling of connectedness their whole lives; it’s like chasing the dragon.
Ok, take another deep breath. Although we’re all dying to see what happens next, the next episode doesn’t air until March 14th. Until then, here’s what I suggest. Watch that final scene a few more times, then attack your significant other and rekindle those “This is why I first dug you” feelings. For those of you still looking, your Vincent is out there; have you considered a career in law enforcement if speed dating isn’t working? See you guys in a few weeks!