Time for Alison’s story to finally cross over with the others. Somehow.
The episode begins in a cantina. Helena has just cleaned up shop against some other players and now has money for food and drinks, though Sarah is more concerned with Benjamin’s tardiness. Who is Benjamin? One of S’s friends who will also be bringing papers.
But then Mrs. S shows up. Helena rushes forward for the kill, but Sarah blocks her path. S attempts to appeal to Helena, telling her that yes, she did give her up so she could rescue Kira and Sarah from DYAD. Helena isn’t satisfied and still wants her revenge, but the bartender, Camarera, played by Michelle Arvizu, won’t be having any of that in her cantina. Camarera advises Sarah to go shower and wash off where she’s been. Where she goes next will be better.
Alison preps for her upcoming candidate speech while Donnie performs some self-monitoring examinations. The two have a busy day ahead of them: there’s a candidate mixer, they have to submit the signatures, convince Alison’s mother to sign over the store, and still travel with Jason to meet a Mr. Pouchy.
Over at Bubbles, we’re introduced to Alison’s mother, Connie, played by Sheila McCarthy, who isn’t the biggest fan of Donnie. After all, since he just lost his job, Connie worries whether the two will be able to handle the down payment. Alison, though, stands by Donnie and promises that no one will feel the pinch. Connie also has one of Marci’s campaign posters in the store because she voted for Marci last year.
Between some sheets, Shay claims Cosima’s belly in the name of Spain. The conquest begins and soon ends with the surprise arrival of Delphine, who can always find Cosima when it’s important. Anyway, Delphine has been testing Leda subjects for the misfolded protein that Cosima shares with the Castor boys. Cosima’s numbers are worrying, so Delphine needs a urinalysis.
Cosima then calls Scott and asks him to cover for her, but more than that, don’t show Delphine the book. As for Rachel, though, Cosima wants Scott to find out if Rachel can decode the book, but Scott isn’t looking forward to that after Felix humiliated Rachel.
Jason meets up with Alison and Donnie and reminds the two that they need the storefront in order to transport their product. He and Donnie head off to meet Pouchy.
Back in the school, Alison and her campaign manager, Felix, set up Alison’s table and have a run-in with Marci. Also, Cosima needs Alison’s pee. Connie calls Alison’s phone to let her know that she’s having another heart attack. Another, I said. Alison leaves to take care of this and tasks Felix with delivering forms and signatures. Alison will need to hurry back soon, as the doors open in an hour for constituents. Plus, photo-ops are coming up soon.
So after Donnie and Jason spar a bit on Alison’s family, they enter a warehouse and meet Pouchy to drop off the envelope with the money. However, we get a bit of accidental switcheroo and Donnie actually has the envelope with Alison’s forms, signatures, and campaign stickers. Don’t you hate when that happens? Jason leaves to get the correct envelope, but Donnie must stay.
Back at the cantina, Mrs. S apologizes for her betrayal and the suffering she’s caused, but Helena says nothing. She’s ready to fight, but S won’t do so because of Helena’s baby. Helena isn’t concerned. She says that she’ll find her boyfriend, the two will drive tow trucks, and then make a home for their baby. At the very least, Helena’s given this a bit of thought.
Okay, enough talk. Helena wants to step outside right now. S refuses, even after Helena gets in two solid punches. She fakes a third, which causes S to instinctively throw a punch. She then embraces Helena, asks for her forgiveness, and tells her that she’s with family now. Why the bartender let this fight happen, but kept Helena from grabbing a knife, I don’t know.
Alison shows up at Bubbles just in time to help her not-dizzy mother, who would like some lemon water. And Connie can’t sell the shop, either. There’s some history between the two. No one that Alison picked has ever been good enough for her mother. Alison still vows to win this school trustee election.
While Alison leaves to head back to the school, Cosima arrives at the school and ends up getting spotted by someone who thinks her for Alison. The amount of times this happens, I swear.
Lucky for Cosima, Felix steals her away and begins to transform her into Alison. Though Cosima didn’t come here for this, Felix tells her that if she wants Alison’s pee, she’ll have to play along. This is how things operate on Planet Alison.
Over at DYAD, Scott’s game with some friends is interrupted when Delphine brings in Rachel for her protein testing. Rachel, though, shows interest in the medieval farm building game that Scott is playing and wants to learn. After all, she does get very bored.
Back at the school, while Cosima stands in as Alison for photo-stills, Alison returns. As does Jason, who lets her know about the envelope switch and Donnie’s current fate.
But then Connie also arrives to talk with Alison. Before Connie can get too deep into reminiscing, Alison tells her to get to the point. It turns out that Alison was conceived in-vitro because her father had a low motility. Connie wanted better stock for her child, so she engaged the clinic to provide an upgrade: a competitive swimmer, also Jewish and blonde. So if Connie ever felt disappointed in Alison’s life choices, it’s only because she tried to give her every opportunity from day one.
So Alison leaves and asks Jason to distract her mother by keeping her away from the mixer. At the same time, the photo-op has finished, so Felix tells Cosima to hide in the bathroom until Alison arrives when the time is right.
Rachel immediately begins to regret her decision to learn about farm building once Scott begins to explain the rules, but this is how it goes. If anyone comes in, they’re farm building.
Alison then informs Felix about the envelope mix-up and then comes right out and explains to an increasingly frustrated Felix that she and Donnie are drug dealers. And as Felix is already familiar with Pouchy after he cut off Vic’s finger, Donnie is in serious danger.
Indeed he is. However, Pouchy’s niece, Luisa, played by Jessica Salgueiro, decides to head to the school herself. If she doesn’t have the money in 30 minutes, Donnie loses a nose.
As Alison makes the switch, Marci asks if she’s slipping in something under the wire. Or maybe she doesn’t have enough signatures? Either way, it’s time for speeches, and Alison apparently choked on her valedictorian address. I think I’m just surprised that Alison was even a valedictorian at anything.
Elsewhere in the school, Jason and Connie look over some old high school photos. Connie is still skeptical of her daughter’s ambitions, but Jason sees a different Alison- he sees an ambitious, classy young woman with a head for business. In his mind, Connie’s legacy is safe.
After Alison gets a frantic phone call from Donnie, she meets with Luisa, who takes her sweet-ass time in counting the money. She soon finishes and calls Pouchy with the news. As a result, Donnie is freed.
Speech time. Marci speaks about the importance of adjusting district boundaries, while Felix tells Cosima to hurry and memorize Alison’s speech. However, when Cosima takes the stage, she erupts into a coughing fit.
Once she leaves, Jason makes an honest mistake.
Back on stage, Alison speaks about the importance of family. Schools are family. Bailey Downs will stay in the Glendale school district under her watch. She promises to be a mother hen that will keep her chicks together.
Also, Sarah and Mrs. S talk.
In the bathroom, Alison refuses to vagina cough up a sample and instead asks Cosima what’s wrong. But then Connie enters. She has a nasty habit of picking the most inopportune time to catch up with her daughter, I’m noticing. She congratulates Alison on her speech and signs over the store, even with Donnie as the co-owner. Connie knows that Alison will have the strength to make a change later on. Maybe Jason Kellerman will still be waiting. Sometimes we have to make the hard choices.
Then Alison brings out Cosima.
Rachel tells Scott that she and her father had a secret code. After some deciphering, she lets him know that she’ll only tell Sarah what she discovered.
Shay comforts Cosima after learning of auto-immune disorder, but Shay will always be there for her.
Then this happens. That can’t be normal.
As Sarah and Helena got quite a bit to do these past few episodes, we spent most of our time following Alison and Cosima. For most of the season, Alison’s plot hasn’t had much bearing on the overall storyline, but the show has managed to intertwine her tale with everyone else’s based on what we learn from Connie.
Family was a large part of this episode. The clones always stress the importance of bonds and being there for one another, but it was spelled out a bit more with Alison’s speech and through the fractured relationship with her mother. Perhaps Connie having such high expectations of Alison would explain why she’s always on-edge and trying to make everything squeaky-clean and perfect. That doesn’t make me dislike her character any less, but it’s interesting to think about.
We also saw how necessary it is that the clone club sticks together through Helena’s confrontation with Mrs. S. To be honest, this wasn’t as exciting as I had hoped it would be. Given how much Helena has been waiting for this moment, even going as far as leaving Sarah in the prison to go after her target, I expected Helena to show more rage, but she had a fair amount of restraint here. For her to make up with S as fast as she did felt like a quick way to put the two on good ground, but there should have been more tension.
It’s also strange that S ended up being the person to show up when. Her presence here wasn’t a problem, but it seemed as if the show wanted to give us a face-off between the two sooner rather than later. Plus, if S is here and Felix is with Alison, who’s keeping watch over Gracie? Just a thought.
Briefly on Felix for a second, I did like him taking charge. The man just always gets stuck with playing babysitter. He’s done it for Helena and he had to warm up to Gracie, but I feel he can go toe to toe with Alison, despite how unhinged she is. He’s able to tolerate her shit and keep her in line. Honestly, aside from Sarah, I think he fits best alongside Alison more than any of the other clones.
We’ve got another instance of a clone stepping into another clone’s shoes with Cosima taking over for Alison. It’s a fine way to get the clones together, but I’m curious as to whether Cosima absolutely needed to get the sample at this time. Delphine didn’t give her any sort of deadline and she wasn’t pressing her to get it done as soon as possible.
In addition, if Cosima is willing to spend hours of her day lounging around with Shay, she’d have plenty of time to get something from Alison. Though I’m not sure why Cosima went to Alison when she could have just provided the sample herself. Perhaps I’m missing something, but I didn’t see a reason that stopped Cosima from solving her own problem.
At the very least, Donnie’s still alive, but due to Connie’s preference for Jason, it seems like there will still be tension between the two.
There’s a lot of good setup with “Community of Dreadful Fear and Hate.” With Rachel telling Scott that she’ll only discuss the code with Sarah, it seems like she may become an active part of the plot again. This, combined with Cosima’s worsening state, was an effective way to end the episode and definitely has me interested for next week.