Thanksgiving is a time for, you know, giving thanks. Luckily the time for that is over, because we did that last week on a very special Thanksgiving episode of Ugly Betty. This week brings us the day after Thanksgiving, and we have a lot to learn about family, responsibility and celebrity babies. Mainly I’m interested in the celebrity babies. It’s early morning the day after Thanksgiving and Daniel wakes up hung over in a strange bed. Not an uncommon occurrence for Daniel, the Paris Hilton of Mode, but this is probably the first time he’s slept in Little Mermaid sheets with a graduation picture of Betty looking down on him. Betty comes in and explains that since he was drunk the night before, she brought him home with her instead of sending him home to choke in his own vomit. Ah, Betty, always the giver. But I find it weird that she has her own graduation picture next to her bed. And what is up with the Little Mermaid sheets? My favorite movie in high school was Can’t Buy Me Love, but I didn’t have Patrick Dempsey sheets (Those didn’t come out until last year, and let me tell you, they are a mcdream to sleep on).
If only these were Frida Kahlo sheets…
We learn that Daniel got drunk because he is heartbroken over Sofia, who would rather settle down and start a family with her boyfriend, Hunter, than with Daniel. Betty tries to cheer Daniel up, explaining that a lot can change in a year — a year ago, Betty was working in a cat hospital. Nice. Things we’ve learned this episode that Betty can help with: 1) choking on vomit; 2) throwing up hair balls; 3) becoming a real live girl if you’re a mermaid. But since Daniel has need of none of those, she leaves him in Queens to recuperate, while she heads off to Mode to get some work done.
Meanwhile, at Mode, Wilhelmina knows that someone has been in her office, and whoever it was spoke with Fey on the phone. Wil wants Marc to find the culprit, who left a half eaten cashew. What kind of place is Mode when someone eats half a nut and thinks “Oh, that’s more than enough! I’m stuffed! I’ll just throw the rest down here on the ground!” I need at least three or four cashews before I get that overstuffed feeling.
But all thoughts of cashews are quickly put aside when Wil learns that Mode is getting a big exclusive – a family photo spread with movie stars Tim, Chloe and their baby Chutney. Fabulous! I must confess that I then had to spend the rest of the episode wondering who Tim and Chloe were supposed to be. If only the show had told us if they were Tciensologists or something so I could narrow down the field of celebrities….
Betty arrives at Mode and runs into Sofia. Sofia’s dressed in a fabulous black low-cut dress, and when she runs after Betty it’s like watching an episode of Baywatch. Boobalicious! Of course, I didn’t realize how underdressed I was for day-after-Thanksgiving festivities. As I write this, I’m in elastic waistband pants that can expand with me as I eat my post-Thanksgiving breakfast of pumpkin and pecan pie (fruit, legume and dairy food groups, thanks pyramid of food!) Please wait while I go put on something more appropriate… OK, I’m back, wearing the lowest cut shirt I own (And that’s pretty low. Trust me, I really am. Come one, why would I lie to you?!). Meanwhile, Sofia reveals that she’s leaving that night for a trip to Maine with Hunter, and suspects that Hunter might have planned a wedding for them there. But – hold on tight to your seats – Sofia confides in Betty that she has doubts about Hunter because she likes Daniel! Oh my goodness – she likes him and he likes her, but neither one knows it. I feel like I’m watching Three’s Company! Sofia asks Betty if Daniel, playa that he is, could actually like her, Betty falters and changes the subject. Something else we’ve learned: 4) Don’t go to the girl who dates Walter for romantic advise.
Betty is thrilled when Bradford comes in to tell her about the Baby Chutney photo shoot. But the pressure is on, because Daniel has to make sure the whole thing goes off without a hitch. But back in Queens, Daniel takes one look at the food Ignacio made for breakfast and makes a beeline for the bathroom. The horror! What would Emily Post say! Well, she is very clear on this point, and I quote: “If thou, gentle reader, must puke at the table, be sure to do so discretely, into your napkin.” Guess Daniel missed that lesson in his fancy boarding school. But either way, Daniel is too hung over and humiliated about Sofia to come into work. He asks Betty to cover for him, and hangs up just as the Christmas tree he ordered arrives at the door. Aw, Emily Post is happy again. Everyone knows that if you puke in someone’s house, the best way to make up for it is to buy them a Christmas tree!
At Mode, the stylist for the photo shoot arrives. He has some awesome ideas, including dressing Baby Chutney up in chainmail and dousing her with water. Ideas the photographer rejected: Baby Chutney Visits Abu Ghraib and A Dingo Ate My Chutney. Betty calls Daniel for some help in redirecting the creative vision of the spread, but he is still no help.
Meanwhile, Marc and Wil are on their way to meet Baby Chutney at the airport. A text message from Amanda lets Wil in on the secret that it was Marc and Amanda in her office. Wil accuses Marc of playing Nancy Drew. I would totally buy “Marc Drew and the Mystery of the Bitten Cashew”.
But even though Marc assures Wil that they didn’t learn anything more than that she has a friend in a surgical hospital, an angry Wil throws Marc’s phone out the window. She explains that she will not be able to protect Marc for the woman who has been calling. Sounds scary, but what is she going to do, prank call him from her poorly lit room?! That seems to be about all she’s done so far. The thing that scares me most is that all those bandages are going to come off and we’re going to find out it’s Tara Reid under there.
In Queens, Daniel is helping the Suarez family decorate their tree. It’s very confusing to him, since even though they are poor and only have homemade ornaments, they can still laugh together and have fun. Come on, Daniel, haven’t you ever seen a Lifetime movie?! Justin suggestion that Daniel hang one of the ornaments creates even more confusion. After all, in Daniel’s house, work like that is reserved for the help. But he does it and realizes something surprising – it actually feels good. So good in fact that when Betty calls, Daniel decides to give Betty all responsibility for the shoot. Great idea, Daniel, considering your entire career is riding on this.
Betty is immediately confronted with another problem – the stylist has seen a picture of the baby, and Baby Chutney is u-g-l-y with no alibi. What, does she look like chopped fruit (yay for a chutney joke!)?
Look, Baby Suri’s first TV appearance!
Betty scolds him, saying that if he can’t find beauty and wonder in a baby, then perhaps he isn’t the right person for the job. Betty has apparently never seen that episode of Seinfeld with the baby too ugly for anyone but the parents to look at. It happens. But the stylist is gone, the shoot is approaching, Daniel is still missing, and the entire team needs direction. Yikes – the pressure’s on, Betty!
Back in Queens, Justin is showing some ornaments that he made after a trip to the fabric store. Santos steps in, suggesting that Justin come outside to toss the football around. Daniel says that he needs Justin’s help with the tree, but Santos is upset, because no one is teaching Justin the things he needs to know – like how to throw a football, how to gamble, how to get beat up by thugs, how to be an absentee father, and also how to be super hot. Sure, Santos is homophobic, and that’s bad, but there’s no denying that he’s hot. But Hilda is angry that Santos would judge the way she’s raising Justin and asks him to leave. Things are tense for a moment, but then Justin gives Daniel a stocking of his own to hang on the tree. Yay for the power of Christmas, bringing everyone together! Ignacio thanks Daniel for being there and says he’ll make a great dad someday. If he means that someday Daniel will knock up some one-night stand and then get hit up for gigantic child support payments, I totally agree.
At Mode, things are in high gear, and Betty finally announces her plan — the shoot will be reminiscent of Tim and Chloe’s first film together. It will take place in a modern Garden of Eden, with Tim and Chloe as a 21st century Adam and Eve. Betty finally reaches Daniel, who likes her idea, but thinks that they should do something simpler. Since Tim and Chloe are two working class kids who grew up to be movie stars, he wants to show them in a working class neighborhood. In fact, Daniel thinks that they should do the photo shoot right there in Betty’s own house.
Nasty fabulous Wil continues to be her nasty fabulous self, which gets Wil and Marc thrown out of a cab in the middle of nowhere. And since she threw Marc’s phone away and left her purse in a cab, they are out of luck. They end up in an empty church, where Wil confesses that she spends every moment trying to take over the whole company and just can’t do it any more. Marc immediately picks up on Wil’s little secret and files it away for future use. They decide to break into the collection box and take money for a cab. Wil leaves an earring in exchange (love that it’s only one of her earrings). Moral of this storyline: It’s okay to steal the money poor people left for God as long as it’s so you can meet a celebrity.
Fact: Jesus loves to accessorize!
Betty runs into Sofia in the elevator and asks for a ride to the photo shoot. Betty explains that Sofia needs to tell Daniel about Hunter. Sofia realizes that Betty is right. She also tells Betty that she is wasting her time at Mode, where no one will ever appreciate her, and offers Betty a job.
Inside the Suarez house, Daniel has Ignacio teach him how to say “I love you and I can’t live without you” in Spanish. What?! A whole sentence said in Spanish! Luckily, it was by the non-Spanish speaker, so viewers wouldn’t get confused and think this show was all espanol-ethnic or anything. When Daniel goes outside to talk to Sofia, he messes the sentence up and tells her that he loves his camera. But Sofia can see right through him – she doesn’t think that he meant his camera at all! And, remember, she likes him too! Then Daniel gives Sofia an ornament that he made himself. Sofia pretends to be impressed, because everyone knows that if you date a rich guy, you have to pretend not to care about his money and pretend you like his homemade ornament so once you have him convinced you don’t like him for his money, you can get the diamond the size of your head. So Sofia pretends to like the ornament and they kiss.
Then suddenly the photo shoot is over, and let me be the first to say that this was a total rip-off. You can’t spend an entire episode talking about your celebrity photo shoot and not show us the celebrities or the photoshoot! Especially when the baby was ugly – how great is the thought of that casting call: “Needed — one super hideous newborn.” But the photoshoot is over and we missed it and Daniel offers to help Betty clean up, but she says that they’ll take care of it. Cheapest magazine ever – they use Betty’s house and aren’t even even going to spring for some Merry Maids?!
Then there’s a supposedly touching moment where Betty tells Daniel that he’s the one who saved the day, and Daniel thanks Betty for bringing Sofia there. Maybe Sofia was right and Betty is underappreciated. After all, Betty covered for Daniel all day, got everyone and everything together for the shoot, and he takes credit for every single thing except getting Sofia there. Selfish. Betty tells Daniel about Sofia’s job offer. She says that she would never leave him, but Daniel tells her that she has dreams of her own and he would never stand in her way. Seems to me that if your boss kinda tells you to take another job, you probably should.
Back at the office, Marc takes advantage of Wil’s little secret. He blackmails Wil into a job with more security, a title, and his own company credit card. And at the Suarez house, the happy family sits around the tree. They are excited about the day and having big celebrities at their home. But Betty is about to tell her family about the job offer when the doorbell rings. Ignacio steps out… and it’s immigration, there to arrest him! Not bueno!
So that’s it for this episode. All in all, I thought it was a fun little jaunt. Is anyone else super excited to know what Marc’s new job will be? Do we think they’ll promote Amanda to be Wil’s new assistant?! How exciting was it to have a Walter-free episode? I thought I might have sensed a little glimpse of attraction between Daniel and Hilda at one point – was that my imagination? And what about Betty’s new job offer? Let’s discuss!!