BWW Recap: Liza Goes Into the Woods, Accidentally Cross-Texts on YOUNGER

"Into the woods, you have to grope, but that's the way you learn to cope. Into the woods to find there's hope of getting through the journey."

Yep, Liza certainly put those lyrics to the test this week... as she finds out how "worth it" her journey with Josh really is during a weekend away from the city - and pretty much all luxuries and technology. :-P Meanwhile, Diana and Hugh Shirley hit in a bump in the road just as their relationship begins to take off. Intrigued? Want to read more? Well, who's stopping you? Read on....

When we open, we learn Josh is set to play the Hudson Valley Brewgrass Festival - "48 hours of nothing but craft beer and bluegrass music" - and despite Maggie telling Liza it's against her better judgment, Liza excitedly and proudly agrees to join him (Though, Maggie does warn her friend: "I have three words of advice: extra toilet paper").

Meanwhile, at work, Charles has been chosen to be profiled for The New York Times "By the Book" interview, and needs help sounding "intelligent but not pretentious."

Diana offers up some suggestions but, much to her dismay, she's continually interrupted by Liza, who has a few suggestions of her own.

Watch this scene closely - it's very much reminiscent of the later Season 1 episodes, as Diana here feels completely threatened by Liza. (Remember that?)

The former, who's clearly not as smart as the latter, becomes increasingly jealous, as she watches her little "26-year-old" assistant have a mature, intelligent conversation with Charles - and actually give him helpful suggestions. It's quite the opposite from Diana's approach, which consists of throwing herself at him, while desperately spouting un-creative flirty lines. PO'd, Diana does whatever she can (eye rolls, nervous laughter, snarky comments) to assert her power over Liza and ensure her place as Liza's superior.... to attract Charles.

I don't know if Diana's thing is working, though, because Charles seems completely into Liza's suggestions... to the point where he even calls her up during her camping trip.

And whether either of them know it, their conversation becomes quite intimate (Diana, take note: this is proper flirting!), and he shares details with her about his childhood and his parents. As has been said, once a guy shares details with a girl about his family, it indicates he wants something more serious. Or maybe (and perhaps more likely, because as I said, Charles doesn't really know that he's flirting), it's the writers' way of subtly telling us things could get more serious. Yikes! What will Josh think? (P. S. Anybody catch their exchange: "Lying is bad, but in certain cases acceptable, even necessary"? Yeah, when/if Charles finds out Liza's secret, that will surely be a game-changer!!)

P. P. S. Watch for Charles' heartbreaking reaction when Liza mentions her boyfriend ("Yeah... I'll see you Monday.") You can totally tell he's crushed!! :-(

But, as we all know, she's with Josh now. And based on this weekend, that may be something she'll end up regretting. (Not because she doesn't love him, of course... just because of the living arrangements... turns out Maggie may have been right!)

She finds herself sleeping in a tent on the wet ground sans air mattress (there was a hole in it), and Josh's roommate, Gabe, interrupts an intimate moment by showing her his unidentified, and rather large, bug bite (and makes a crack at her age, to boot!)

Yup. She's roughin' it all right.

It gets worse, as the next day starts, with Coffee Stout in place of a cuppa joe, and a bathroom break that initially starts on line for a particularly full Port-A-Potty ends behind a tree in the middle of the woods.

And at the most inconvenient time, Charles calls... first with a work-related question. But the topic turns toward his divorce - something of which, Liza, again, can relate (although, also again, Charles doesn't realize that). And given that, it begs the question... does he not realize how inappropriate this is? To call a younger employee and discuss your personal life and divorce? Though again, in the whole vein of dramatic irony within the show, maybe from a storyline perspective, perhaps it's showing that he's so comfortable talking to Liza.... maybe it could lead to something. After all, the writers included this topic, because it's something we know Liza relates to, which (in that way, whether they know it or not) brings them closer together. Therefore, is it hinting that something else might happen?

It really hits home when, later, Liza finds herself alone (Josh is prepping for his set) and caught between two text conversations - the first between Josh, the guy who is (26, loves her, all set, but maybe age-inappropriate) and Charles, the man who could be (40-ish, clearly pining for her, and totally age-appropriate, if he only knew her real age).

I love the juxtaposition of the mentions of "Freedom" - especially considering what subjects she's talking about with each of them - and really love that we get to see the two conversations literally displayed next to each other.

It really highlights the difference between the two guys... and the (ahem) level of maturity each of them displays, as one's talking about a highly sophisticated piece of literature, and the other's talking about... boobs.

In having the two guys and their personalities put side-by-side like that, it's almost like Liza's really being forced to look at them seriously, and consider who she really wants to be with.

Furthermore, following a tiny little cross-texting snafu (I'll just let y'all watch it for the details), she tells Charles her weekend in Cooperstown is "not so great. It's really muddy, lots of mosquitos, no plumbing." Like, it seemed like a good idea at first, but in the end, really wasn't what she was expecting, and not something she particularly enjoyed at all. Hmmmm... kinda like, say, her relationship with Josh? Idk... that's a little harsh to come out and say right there, I think.... but it is significant that she's talking to Charles.

And it is significant that while she's talking to Charles, she gets kicked out of the whole festival entirely (she hip-checked a girl while trying to charge her phone and there's a zero-tolerance policy on violence). So, she missed the festival and Josh's performance, and basically spent the whole weekend talking to Charles. Might as well have just spent the weekend with him. Hmmm... well, maybe that's what they're suggesting. Hmmmm?

To really drive the point home, when he finds out the festival was a bust, Charles pays for a room for Liza and Josh at a nearby "B and B."

Is that sending a message? Perhaps... but one could also see it, as Josh does, as a boss just doing a nice thing for his employee.

But... when Josh suggests he and Liza take a photo of themselves on the bed, and send it to Charles as a thank you (and remember, this is a photo of Charles and Liza together in a hotel), and after Josh leaves Liza deliberately decides not to send it... without telling Josh... is that sending a message? Uh... yeah. It totally is.

(Reminiscent of that episode of FRIENDS where Ross deleted Rachel's phone message without her knowing... and we all know how that ended. So, basically... it's not looking good).

Liza looks off in the direction Josh left with uncertainty as the screen fades to black.

Ooooh... this is good. All set up for a super dramatic love triangle - and possibly, a reveal to Charles that'll hopefully shake things up within the storyline. I mean, story-wise, I think #TeamJosh has pretty much told all the stories that you can tell. For one, she's revealed her true age to him, Josh knows the secret, and as Liza actually admits herself (!!), "I hate saying it, but I'm just too old for this." (Yes, she's talking about the festival, but still.)

So, is she saying it's time for a change? I don't know, but I'm certainly ready to inject some #TeamCharles back into this storyline... and I definitely wanna see what happens next with the love triangle.

And speaking of love triangles, and twisted relationships, Josh and Liza's is not the only one that hits a snag this week. Onto the B-plot!

Despite the fact that she clearly knows she's totally swinging and missing when flirting with Charles, Diana doesn't really care. That's because she's still/also pining after Hugh Shirley, and wants him now more than ever after he played hard(er)-to-get last week.

She arranges a meeting with him (where she a. sends Kelsey away so it's just the two of them, and b. wears a suggestive backless black slip) to discuss "marketing" (wink wink) and, as you might have guessed, he drops one of his magic lines - "I am objectifying you right now....erotically" - and the meeting quickly turns into lunch.... and then into another make-out session (in his home, on his couch!).

Eventually, Hugh utters another outrageous comment - - "You channel this masculine energy. Which normally I'd hate, but yours is stoic and brave and deeply vulnerable. I would like to see you... naked, raw and hungry" - which, of course, further entices Diana and they move to the bedroom. But, as is typically the case in these types of rom-com sitcoms, that's when things go awry.

First, Hugh begins to turn Diana off (and that's putting it lightly) when he slips back into using his "no-holds-barred" commentary.

But, that's clearly just the beginning, 'cause when Diana gets on top and things really start to get rolling, she hears a crack, followed by Hugh's piercing scream.

Cut to Hugh, on a stretcher, heading into an operation to fix his broken... yup. When the doctor asks him if he needs a moment alone with his "girlfriend" (note that that's the first time that word's been used to describe her relationship toward him), he turns his head and screams, "GET HER OUT OF HERE!"

So, the Diana/Hugh relationship is not looking good. Does that mean Trout Pout's going back to Charles? Unknown. But there's definitely a TO BE CONTINUED with this one. And yeah, I'm kinda interested to see what happens next. (Side note: Notice how Diana and Hugh have now swapped how they feel about each other... with Diana now head-over-heels in love, and Hugh angry and semi-disinterested. Brilliant move on the part of the writers! Interesting to see how this will affect them.)

So, definitely an eventful week. Very interested to see how these two story arcs will end up - and if they'll even conclude before the end of the season (yes, folks - we're now more than halfway through!)

And may I just point out as well... Where's Kelsey? She only appeared for a very brief scene, and then appeared even briefer mocking Diana as the boss made a move on Hugh Shirley. Then again, Josh got the shaft for the most part last episode, so... I guess it's only fair. BTW, the promo for next week suggests a little more Kelsey action (and Broadway's Martha Plimpton and Camryn Manheim, no less!), so I guess everything gets balanced out in the end.

Hopefully, we can say the same about our main couples. As always, only time will tell. All the more reason to tune in next week. 'Til then, you know what to do.... stay YOUNGER.

P. S. Though it's not technically related to YOUNGER the series, check out these INCREDIBLE clips of Sutton Foster and Nico Tortorella in rehearsal for Foster's concert with Baltimore Symphony - they're "fit as a fiddle and ready for love." (Though, again, can we say the same about their characters?!)

Bye, y'all! Have a great week!

Photo Credit: TV Land

Video Credit: @suttonlenore, @nicotortorella on Instagram

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From This Author Matt Smith