Episode: Season 1, Episode 22 – The Motherload
Aired: Sunday 8:30pm, 24th June 2012
*SPOILERS – THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR THIS EPISODE AND PREVIOUS EPISODES OF SUBURGATORY. CATCH UP ON SUBURGATORY EPISODES HERE*
It’s Mother’s Day in Chatswin and of course everyone goes over the top, showing their love for their mothers. Of course, no one’s more eager to prove their love than the Shays who dress Sheila up as Cinderella and cart her around in a horse-drawn carriage. Eden tries to get Tessa to open up about her issues with Mother’s Day and Tessa thinks it’s hypocritical considering she keeps giving up her babies. Meanwhile, Noah and Jill have decided to go for an endangered animal theme for the nursery with pelts, an ivory tusk crib, and snakeskin wallpapering. Eden’s not looking forward to the baby shower and she’s in a weird mood: she’s desperate to get into George’s pants regardless of the fact that they’ve waiting this long because of Noah’s discomfort.
The interior decorator had some of the animals murdered just for this room.
Noah is scheming to steal Carmen from the Royces so the same nanny who raised their first born can raise their new son, but their daughter suggests they raise their own child. George can’t get it up and Eden wonders if it’s because he finds her pregnant body unattractive but he admits it’s because of what Noah has been saying to him. She argues that he should stop worrying about Noah’s kid and start worrying about his own, as she believes they’re both in denial about Tessa’s mother issues. But George claims he knows his kid and he’s not going to force her to pick at a scab that isn’t there.
Dallas has brought gold sneakers, her secret weapon to win the Mother’s Day five k. Dallas tells Tessa it’s the first time she’ll be in town to compete as Steven took them to Israel every year for Mother’s Day. Dalia interrupts to ask where her passport is: Steven has agreed to take her to Israel this year like he always does, and despite Dallas’ Mother’s Day plans, Dalia still decides to go with her dad. Lisa decides she’s going to hold off on Mother’s Day this year (as she’s still awaiting DNA results to prove Sheila’s not her mother). Fred tells her that he has a present big enough for the both of them: he has planned a day based on her favourite song, ‘100 ways’ by James Ingram, and Lisa can pay him back later.
Tessa is anxious to get news on the internship she applied for in the city. To her disappointment she finds a rejection letter from the Village Voice. Lisa also gets disappointing mail, a positive DNA result saying her mum is her mum. The mothers start their 5k run while George, Tessa and Eden head to Jill’s baby shower. Jill is eager for Eden to see the nursery and meet the Coen brothers who will be filming the birth. Dallas falls, forcing her to leave the race, and she asks them to call Carmen as she doesn’t have any family to pick her up from the hospital. Sheila runs through the ribbon at the end into the arms of her proud son Ryan, who has the potassium she requested ready for her.
Eden realises she can’t give a baby to someone who is going to put him in a nursery with stuffed baby seals placed next to clubs. She starts getting labour pains even though she’s not due for weeks and George takes her to the hospital. Noah and George argue over whether Noah can come to the hospital or not – and they agree he can follow in his car, keeping a safe distance. Fred’s present backfires when James Ingram turns out to be Sheila’s ex. Fred is upset that she kept this secret from him. And when Lisa goes to put her mother’s blood back in the freezer, she finds another one of Sheila’s secrets: Ryan’s blood type means he can’t genetically be part of the family.
Tessa turns up at the hospital to find Eden was just in false labour. George asks her about the rejection letter and she says she’s fine and she’ll find something else. He wonders what other feelings she’s covering up. Carmen arrives and informs them Dallas has broken her ankle, and Tessa runs off to help her. Whoopi Goldberg turns up as Yakult’s voice and gives Dallas a message. Dallas asks Tessa to call Dalia and tell her to come home, and it hurts Tessa’s feelings. Mother’s Day in Chatswin has made Tessa miss her mother. She returns home to find her grandmother Helen waiting for her, which she sees as a way out of Chatswin.
Thoughts on the Episode
Allie Grant was fantastic this episode, she continues to hold up the show and the story arcs she appears in. Even though I knew Ryan was going to turn out to be the adopted child (I mean come on Ana Gasteyer + Chris Parnell ≠Parker Young) Lisa’s face in front of that refrigerator as she realised had my heart breaking for her and Ryan. It was so beautifully done that I think it’s my favourite moment in the whole series (with Lisa’s Thanksgiving nudie run coming in a close second). If I continue watching Suburgatory for season 2, it will be because of Allie Grant and Lisa.
Just a few extra tidbits: Whoopi Goldberg’s guest appearance as Yakult’s voice was fun, as was seeing Sheila done up as Cinderella with her family all dressed as supporting cast – you can imagine that this must have been Sheila’s idea. Although I really didn’t understand the need to change the theme song in the last episode of the season, it seemed incredibly pointless.
Tessa came very close to having a scene where I actually felt something for her other than hate – her inability to talk about her rejection letter and watching her truly comes to terms with the fact that she comes second to Dalia in Dallas’ eyes; but this was quickly ruined as she laid eyes on her grandmother. She’s just spent the last five minutes mourning the loss of a mother she never knew and then the moment she sees Helen she thinks, ticket out of here? It was such a big jump to make in a few seconds and just made her seem so shallow and unlikeable. Also it’s upsetting, after seeing her build friendships and a life in the suburbs, to realise that she’s willing to give up Lisa, Malik, Dallas, George and her job (that she seemed to love if only for an episode) at the first opportunity. If I stop watching Suburgatory, it will be because of Jane Levy and Tessa – not that other parts of this show aren’t weak but Tessa is the worst thing about this show, especially since she’s the protagonist.
The other really disappointing aspect was Jill and Noah and the whole Eden fiasco. I couldn’t conceivably believe that any sane parent would put loaded guns in their child’s bedroom, no matter how neglectful they are, and the baby seals toys placed next to the clubs were repulsive. Eden still fails to inspire anything but cringing in me, especially with her overbearing personality leading her to meddle in the lives of people she’s only known a few months. It’s funny because exactly the same meddling doesn’t bother me with Dallas; so unfortunately, I think the problem lies with Alicia Silverstone. Although I don’t think you can run away with the baby if you’re a surrogate, pretty sure the courts will return it to the Werners – regardless of the fact that they are clearly terrible parents.
My favourite quote for the episode:
Sheila: Lisa, medic. That means ace bandages, antiseptic wash and a pint of my blood from the downstairs freezer... Just in case.
Lisa: We bank blood in the downstairs freezer?
Let us know below what you thought of the final episode of this season of Suburgatory and the season as a whole.