TV Recap: Awkward. 3×10-“Redefining Jenna”

awkward-season-3-300x225All right kids, here we are. The summer finale of Awkward. aired on Tuesday night. Things aren’t going in a great direction, but Ming, Matty, and Sadie were all awesome, so at least there’s that.

Previously on Awkward.: Jenna likes Colin and is super freaking obvious about it. This bodes poorly for her relationship with Matty.

Jenna’s decided to focus on Matty again, but Colin’s making it difficult by weirdly grasping her arm during class. I still think it’s kind of possessive-creepy. He’s also wearing a woman’s sweater? Jenna misconstrues a photography viewing party invite as a sexy note, and Colin chuckles at her in his smarmy way. I still don’t really like Colin, in case that wasn’t obvious enough.

Tamara’s hosting the annual black Friday party with the Julies this year since she came up with the “After Mall Ball” name. Sadie thinks this is a mistake, especially since the Julies didn’t involve her at all. When she approaches them about it, they respond, “A bitch without money is just a bitch.” Wow. Everyone’s awful. At this point in the episode my sister said, “I love that they dress like Marilyn and Carolyn Arnold,” which should be a good throwback for anyone that religiously read the Babysitters Club books, even the ones starring Mallory. BSC-related tangent over.

Ma Lacey and Val are BFFs now (YES!) and defeated Black Friday together. “Your mom scored you a ton of your snoozefest fashion,” Val informs Jenna. But Jenna wants to borrow her mother’s sexy black dress, letting us know that she’s about to transform herself.

Jenna and Matty arrive at Colin’s party (the photographer’s? I’m going to call it Colin’s) only to get an SOS call from Tamara and Jake for ice. Matty’s willingness to bail on the party causes Jenna to claim that he’s going to embarrass her by acting like an asshole. “You’re afraid you’re going to say something stupid and embarrass yourself,” she adds harshly. Rather than get upset at the fact that Jenna clearly thinks he’s too dumb to hang out with her new pretentious friends, Matty calls her out on her bitchtastic behavior. He proceeds to explain that when they first got together, he wasn’t aware that Jenna’s suicide attempt was a misunderstanding and was mortified that it occurred the same day they had sex for the first time. This means he lied to her about how she never embarrassed him, and Jenna is heartbroken.

After the commercial break, Matty says that came out wrong—he lied about being embarrassed earlier this season because he was so embarrassed of the way he felt back then. He feels like he’s been constantly trying to make amends for the unfortunate start to their relationship. Spending so much time making Jenna feel wanted and significant sometimes ends up backfiring and making him feel insignificant. Can we talk for a second about how mature and honest Matty is about his feelings now? I mean really. Let him talk more, good things usually happen when the boy talks. When Jenna asks for an example, he points out that she never asks about his relationship with his parents, which she knows is less than ideal. Jenna kind of shrinks into herself, since she always just assumed he didn’t want to talk about it.

Tamara is freaking out over the party and Jake is tired of being her punching bag/slave. He bails on her to complain to Matty. No worries—Jakara is back to being happy and loving by the end of the episode.

Ming is the one to save Tamara’s day! After getting the royal treatment by the other Asian students at school, she was stopped by a mysterious towncar outside of the party. Within it was “the Accountant,” who made her new head of the mafia and gave her the key that seems to grant wishes. Ming uses her newfound power to prevent Tamara’s total meltdown, immediately receiving small cocktail tables, expensive booze, cotton candy, and a bouncy house. Damn, Ming can throw a party.

Woo! Lissa’s back on the scene! And she came back to tell us that SHE IS THE ONE WHO KILLED RICKY SCHWARTZ?! She had Thai food before comforting (nudge) Ricky, who was upset over his break up with Sadie. God must be punishing her for her behavior, what with the broken neck and all. Sadie scoffs—SHE was clearly the one that broke Lissa’s neck, and the peanut oil in the Thai food wasn’t enough to kill Ricky. Her uncle is a doctor, so she knows these things. Lissa leaves a bit happier. Tamara asks where Sadie got her knowledge and Sadie responds, “I made it up. My uncle is a jeweler. I don’t want Lissa beating herself up over it. She’d probably end up in porn.” Sadie isn’t one to mince words, and I love her for it. SADIE FOR PROTAGONIST!

All right, we’ll go back to the party I could care less about. Jenna’s having a bad time, until she hands out with Colin. Jenna ignores Matty’s texts, Colin fights with Angelique on the phone. At a party. Dude, at least go outside. As they observe the photographer’s work, Jenna admits that she wishes she could be redefined as a person who is less embarrassing to herself and others (personally, I don’t think Jenna is embarrassing, but I DO think she’s being a whiny coward). She gives the example of her assuming that the sexual tension (ugh) between her and Colin was real. He says it is, and then they stare at each other a bunch.

While Colin is dropping her off at the Julies’ party, Jenna explains that acting on her feelings for Colin would be selfish, and she needs to work on not being selfish. But Colin thinks the time to be selfish is now, especially since it would benefit him. He doesn’t say that, but subtext doesn’t lie. Jenna kisses Colin in plain view of the party house. Hey, there’s thinking of yourself, and there’s being a jerk. If Jenna wants to date Colin that’s fine, but she needs to break up with Matty first. The big question is, did Matty see what happened?

So that’s it for the first half of Awkward. season 3! Here’s to hoping that Jenna and I can be friends in the second half. Considering the preview for the second half of the season, it’s not looking great for our tv character-viewer relationship.

Bri is a 25-year-old born and raised in the swamps of Jersey. Just kidding, she lives at least twenty minutes from those swamps. She’s a publishing professional that moonlights as a writer. She enjoys going to concerts (anything from Rooney to Springsteen to NKOTBSB), roadtripping, and complaining that she truly belongs in the 1950’s, the 1920′s, or the 1980′s depending on her mood. She definitely owns more books than she should and reads every chance she gets. If you stop hearing from her, it’s because the book piles have fallen over and smothered her to death in the night. You can contact her at bri@theyoungfolks.com. Twitter: @bri_lockhart