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BWW Recap: Liza Keeps a Few More Secrets, Bewares the Wrath of the Sky on YOUNGER

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Beware the wrath of the sky!! (Too soon?) And also, more seriously, beware of spoilers! No really. As much as I love people reading my recaps, if you have not yet seen the episode and do not want to be spoiled, turn back now.... 'cause I offer you no mercy. This episode is. a. doozy.

As we all know, Liza's got a pretty big secret she's keeping, period, which she has been keeping since the beginning of the series. But the reveal last week adds one more to the list - and through the course of the episode she just keeps piling 'em on, one after the other. And, you simply won't BELIEVE how it all ends!!

Okay, was that enough of a teaser? I mean, seriously, who needs a teaser! There's two episodes left! Who isn't watching at this point?! If you're prepared, read on:

After watching - and re-watching - Sierra's video of Thad, Liza resolves to come clean to Kelsey about the ordeal... and to Caitlin - who, BTW is returning home after a 10 episode break - about... everything else. "I'm tired of all the secrets, Maggie," she tells her friend (to which Maggie hilariously responds, "Well, look, I'm tired of skinny jeans... but you just take a deep breath and hang in there"; LOL!) Caitlin arrives, she and Liza agree to have dinner later that night (where Liza will explain everything), and Liza's out the door to work.

At which, this week, the Empirical gang is launching the latest installment in the CROWN OF KINGS series (yes, it's a spoof of GAME OF THRONES), and when Liza arrives at work, finds everybody to be gearing for up for, like, the biggest book release event ever... complete with a book signing, celebrity superfan appearances, and costumed characters from the series - all live in Times Square. Yippee!!

Diana mentions the franchise "basically carries the entire company" (if series author Edward L. L. Moore "ever jumped to another publisher or stopped writing, it'd be the end of Empirical"), which explains why Charles is as jump-ity as ever.

Mr. Moore - who looks exactly like George R. R. Martin, natch - arrives; as one of the many perks of being the author that holds up the company, he gets "personal approval over all of the actors who portray his characters in the Times Square event," and he's come to "audition" potential roles.

Unfortunately, it's slim pickings for Princess Pam Pam - until Liza enters carrying the Moore-approved snack tray. Yeah... you know what happens next.

Over dinner, Diana tries to charm Moore, to no avail - very reminiscent of how she tried to kiss up to Anton Bjonberg with Swedish fish last season and, for that matter, all she's done with Charles! - Moore's much more focused on (and smitten with) his new Princess Pam Pam, Liza.

In exchange for agreeing to don the princess' war attire (and because, again, he's smitten), Moore tells Liza the ending to the entire series - embargoed from pretty much everyone else in the world - which, of course, further adds to Trout Pout's ire.

I mean, though... that's pretty cool, right? Knowing the ending before anyone else? Well... when you're Liza, that's just one more secret to add to the ongoing list.

Of note, considering how many of these secrets Liza's currently keeping from Kelsey, it was especially poignant to hear Kelsey say, "You love having your little inside scoop, don't you?" And to hear Liza's response: "Believe me, I don't. I hate keeping secrets from my friends." Again, honey, if you only knew. Aw, Kels! :-(

It doesn't get any better for Liza: when she arrives at the event, she's positioned next to Moore himself, equally dismissive and creeped out by his clear attempts to flirt with her: "I want to see you gripping a long powerful spear." (Liza, in character, responds that Princess Pam Pam "might prefer that men held their own spears." Perhaps not too funny, but with Foster's signature deadpan, I'm ROFL!)

So... moving away from that for a sec... let's check in on how Secret #2 is revealed.

Peeved by Liza's refusal to reveal her true occupation, Caitlin tracks down her mother via the FindYourPhone app on the iPad, determined to find out exactly what she does for a living once and for all. But, she arrives at Times Square to find Liza on a break, and, after a diehard fan (Hello Broadway's John Treacy Egan!) asks "Princess Pam Pam" for a photo, believes her mom's gig to be posing as a costumed character in Times Square (!!!) Inspired by Liza's spunk and perseverance, Caitlin vows to work just as hard... and agrees to take the challenging Chemistry courses she had earlier dismissed as too difficult.

Well, phew! That reveal was easy. I mean, granted, she didn't actually reveal anything, and she's still hiding a secret from her daughter - and her daughter from her boss - but she's definitely strengthened the bond between the two of them and she got Caitlin to what she wanted her to do. So, that's a win? Right? Maybe even a win-win? Right? Right? Anyone?

It seems she got off easy with her "payment" for keeping the other secret, too, as Moore's sleazy attempt to hand Liza his room key is intercepted by Charles, who safely whisks the "princess" away and into a nearby restaurant.

Safe out of harm's (read: Moore's) way, Liza and Charles get to talking, where the latter tells the former more about why he semi-hyperventilates when Moore comes to town: "The idea that my company - my grandfather's company - can't exist with the overwritten fantasies of some handsy old man..."

He also admits that when the pressure gets to be too much, he often ponders what it would be like if Empirical just bottomed out and he had to start over. Hmmmm... pondering starting your life over? Kind of like someone else we might know??? I mean... damn... these writers are good!!

And now that these geniuses have fleshed out Charles to a point where we can see his situation's very similar to Liza's (only further proof they're perfect for each other) and have him feel so comfortable with Liza to tell him of his feelings (yet more proof), they have Liza prod him: "What would you do? What's something you've always wanted to do? Something you couldn't do because of your job?"

Again, this could not be more perfect. She knows what she did. She left her job and her life behind, completely reinvented herself, and never looked back. What would he do?

"Do you really wanna know?" he asks. "Yeah," she replies, intrigued.

Of course you know what's going to happen next. Or do you??? As Charles is looking deeply into her eyes, contemplating his next move, Liza gets a buzz on her phone - it's an incriminating text from Thad. So, with good reason, she bolts out of there, leaving Charles behind in the dust. :-( And just as things were getting good too! Oh, well.

But back to Thad's text. Oh, yes. Thad's text. Which brings us to secrets #3 & #4, the most pivotal and game-changing of them all.

So, as you might expect from last week's reveal, Liza is continually pestered via text by Thad, who demands Liza meet him to discuss the contents of the video. When she keeps ignoring his messages, he takes matters into his own hands - and actually shows up at Empirical. But when he arrives, Kelsey tells him Liza's not there - she had to go home to pick up her Princess Pam Pam costume (and, for the record, Kelsey telling him Liza "has the biggest secret and will not tell me" seriously doesn't help matters). So... Thad hightails it to Liza's apartment.... where he bumps into Caitlin. (Uh oh). Who tells him Liza's her mother. (Double uh oh).

So, of course, he goes straight to the Dartmouth alumni website to dig up some dirt.

Now, let's just pause this for a minute and ponder his actions for a bit. Of course, the whole premise of the series is that Liza's posing as 26, and her mission is to avoid getting caught at all costs (so this

is a serious blow to her plan regardless), but Thad's reaction - and the sly smile he gives to Caitlin when he hears it - seems waaay too out of place for his character, who doesn't seem to know much about Liza's age-guise situation.

When he confirms to Caitlin, "Liza Miller is your mother," he says it so certainly - and immediately - as if he's stating, "I knew it!" He doesn't process the idea long enough... he's not confused, or thinking like, "Wait... what?! What the hell do you mean?" He just takes but a minute to process, and then heads straight to the Alumni site. Which, like... I guess, I get... 'cause he could have been smiling at the realization he's now got LEVERAGE over Liza (at a time when he seriously needs it).

But it just seems off, because his character was never put in a situation where he'd ever have to second-guess her age or anything like that. He doesn't work with Liza, he's not really friends with her, he doesn't hang out with her regularly, and really didn't get involved in anything with her until he saw she received a video of him doing it with the office assistant in the bathroom. Like, really though. There's no reason for him to suspect anything.. and therefore, no reason for him to react that fast.

But... with that said, the more I think about it, considering the premise of the series (and the LEVERAGE he realizes he now has over her... thinking more about it, that's probably the significance of the smile), I can see why they had him jump to that conclusion. It definitely shakes things up (right when they needed to be, too!), and puts Liza on the fast-track to coming forward with her secret... lest it now be leaked by the a-hole who cheated on his fiancé.

Unfortunately, Thad successfully hacks into the site, and pulls up Liza's alumni page, which reveals her true graduation year (and a really great pic - is that Sutton's real graduation photo?), thus confirming her real age.

So, he sends the aforementioned incriminating text to Liza, demanding that they meet.... which brings us to where we are now.

Thad presents Liza with an ultimatum: "You are going to DELETE that video, you are going to attend our wedding as a bridesmaid, and I will let you keep your job as long as you keep me happy."

Defeated, Liza gives in, telling him to "tell everybody about me. I don't really care anymore," but that she's still showing Kelsey the video, because Kels "deserves to know what kind of person she's going to spending the rest of her life with."

As she turns, he grabs her arm. "This isn't over." She shakes him free: "Oh, yes it is."

So, that's that. But then, just as she's walking away, a piece of construction equipment comes loose from a crane above them, and starts spiraling downward.... as Thad looks up at it in horror. And you can just guess what happens next.

Holy curveball, Batman!!! What the hell was that!? Part of me kinda hopes he's not gone completely, abut judging by the next episode's title - "No Weddings and a Funeral" - it's not looking good.

So now, if you'll indulge me, I'd like to, in the final moments of my recap, unpack some of the clues leading up to that shocking ending:

First of all, what happens in the final moment is especially chilling when you consider that earlier in the episode, when talking about the CROWN OF KINGS ending, Kelsey - Thad's fiancé! - says: "Somebody important always dies." I had to watch it back a few times, but I totally see that they meant to break the fourth wall, referring to the series as a whole... and that there was significance in having Kelsey say that line. And that explains, too, why this Thad storyline (considering the way it ended) was paired with a work storyline involving the release of a book where everyone dies in the end. Tying the themes together so brilliantly; again, these writers are geniuses.

Further examples of their genius: they provide us with a second "hidden line" (again, these are just my speculation) in the conversation between Liza and Charles. When Charles is telling her about his dream that Empirical would bottom out, he actually doesn't use the phrase "bottom out." Rather, Liza interrupts him with: "[You secretly hope] the whole thing would just come crashing down already?"

Lightbulb.

In Liza's situation, she has to hide everything, but when she says this line to Charles, suggests she secretly wishes everything was out in the open, and she didn't have to hide anything. She also seems prepared to deal with the consequences, as she tells Thad, "I don't really care anymore." Still, the pressure to deal with the consequences would be there, but the other pressure of keeping the secret would be gone.

So... when something literally "comes crashing down" on top of Thad, she now has to deal with the pressure of Thad being *dead* (and presumably explaining that to Kelsey), but if Thad is, in fact, dead and gone... the pressure that came with Thad exposing her (and the fallout between showing Kelsey the video) is now eradicated. Her wish, in a way, came true... and happened *literally* in the same way she described just moments before. Looks like the writers were pretty thoughtful with their word choice!! Kind of a cool literal metaphor, isn't it, though? Or are you still emotionally scarred at what happened to Thad to think about anything else?

Also, on the topic of cool metaphors, I also have to say, although this may be really looking too far into it, I thought there was significance to the construction happening throughout the episode. Could it be significant as to how Liza's trying to "rebuild" her life? As she's pondering telling Caitlin the truth? Coming clean to Kelsey about Thad? Starting anew (or hinting at it) with Charles?

It could also be hinting that, in the process of construction, things are changed. Thus, it's significant when she's seen walking through a construction zone (a zone of change) right before the scene when Thad arrives at her house and finds Caitlin, completely changing (ah!) the circumstances. Just thought that was worth mentioning. Anybody else find that intriguing? No? Just me? Oh, well.

Getting back to the hints in the writing... and on the heels of speaking about the construction zone....

Lastly, there's the one that's the most obvious, but I thought it'd be worth mentioning anyway.... just before the piece of equipment falls on top of him, Thad says: "This isn't over," and Liza, "Oh, yes it is." And as we see from what happens next, yep, it is indeed over - in more ways than one! CHILLING! #TheseWritersAreTheBest

But now the question is... how ya gonna get out of this one, Liza?

I guess we'll find out next week, on the last (!!!!) episode of the season!! 'Til then, have a look at this sneak peek video taken from the table read of the finale (from the looks at it, we might be seeing a familiar face return!!!) as well as a short promo highlighting moments from next week's episode. And, of course, as always, stay YOUNGER. ;-)

See ya next week, y'all!

Photo & Video Credit: TV Land



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From This Author Matt Smith