The least you need to know: Former BFFs Tamara and Jenna are still not on speaking terms after the lip-slip between J and Ricky Schwartz at the party. It sucks. But what doesn't suck is that Matty wants to be more than friends!! Hurrah!!
The Set-up: Ext. School. Jenna is lamenting Tamara's refusal to reconcile. Up ahead there's a crowd. Fight! Fight! Fight! comes the gladiatorial chant. It's between Sweetheart Jake and GF Lissa (Crazyeyes). Apparently not-so-Sweetheart Jake has confessed to Crazyeyes about that time he impetuously kissed Jenna in the hallway (See Recap for Epi 6). Why? Why would he do that? Lissa goes all Fatal Attraction in public and slaps Jenna. It stings, but at least it gets Tamara talking to her again, even if it's just for a moment. (Aside--the Sun Drop product placement on every show I watch is getting to be a little much. Just me, but am I seeing that crap everywhere? Is anyone actually drinking it?)
Crazycakes Val acts as a couples counselor (insert obvious irony here) for the feuding duo and it's clear that Crazycakes was just like Crazyeyes back in the day. Jake sees an exit sign from this effed up relationship and makes a run for it, but Crazyeyes freaks and he wimps out (because he's too nice, which is why he'll always be in the friend zone). For his lip-cheating ways he's sentenced to
Ming declares herself Switzerland in the Tamara/Jenna War, but Jenna begs her to intercede and setup a treaty negotiation. Ming agrees. Matty asks about the Jake kiss--was she ever going to tell him? There was no need, it was hardly more than a head-on collision between their faces.Witty, sexy repartee ensues (so very Gable/Lombard) and Matty asks her out to dinner. It's a real date. In public!
Ming lures Tamara to the Sanctuary (a.k.a. under the bleachers a.k.a. hook-up mecca) for a convo with Jenna, who begs her forgiveness. Can she? Will she?
Meanwhile, Crazyeyes, egged on by Sadie, is running Jake into the ground. Matty tells him to man up, but Sweetheart Jake may not have it in him.
Tamara and Jenna make up. Yay! Group hug. T reveals that she didn't, in fact, write the care-frontation letter (of course, she didn't), but she thinks Matty did and lays out her evidence. Which to the casual, over-analytical observer like Jenna, is damning. Can it be? Jenna's mouth says NO!, but her inner monologue says Please nooooooo!
Getting ready for her first date with Matty, Jenna is trying to ignore that doubting Thomas in her head. Tamara and Ming arrive and find the previously torn up, but now carefully re-taped, care-frontation letter in J's room. They mean to get to the bottom of this anonymous author. Ding-dong. Matty's here. He's bonding with Lacey over Jenna's baby pictures. Too cute! Such a gentleman, he opens the car door for her and he's obviously nervous. It's all sweetly charming until they've been driving for at least an hour, to a whole other town, for dinner. Crap, maybe he is trying to hide her, afterall.
Sadist Sadie is crucifying Jenna as the anti-Christ to Lissa. Something must be done, she declares. WWS(adie)D? Lissa wants to know. First order of business: Jake must de-friend Jenna ASAP.
Jenna and Matty finally arrive at the hole in the wall restaurant. He knows the waitress? Must be because this is where he takes all his reject hook-ups (Jenna, get some confidence, puhleeze!) There's obviously more to the sitch than meets the eye. After he's pre-ordered for her, she's pissed and about to thrown in the napkin, when the manager comes out--it's Matty's uncle, this is his restaurant, and this is the first time Matty's ever brought a girl here before. Awwww. He just wanted tonight to be special. He gets a kiss.
Making-out ensues all the way home...where Ming and Tamara ambush them. Who's up for games? Okay. They all have to reveal some super-secret truth (i.e. they want Matty to self-incriminate about the letter) but he's charms the pants off of them instead (metaphorically, of course). Soon he's demonstrating his hair styling acumen and dispensing dude advice: Ricky Schwartz is a douche, because he kissed another girl in front of T and if he likes her he should have the nads to say it. Wait? Isn't he guilty of all these same offenses? Jenna starts to wonder if she shouldn't be heeding Matty's advice to be open to better guy. Steady, Jenna.
Doorbell. It's Sweetheart Jake, there to "de-friend" her per Lissa/Sadie. But he doesn't. Instead he apologizes for the kiss and for dragging her into his own hell. Is Jenna wondering what if about Jake? Noooo, Jenna! Stay the course.
Final Act: Is that a Biore strip on Matty's nose? Yep. Tamara and Ming have fallen under M's spell. Jake finally finds his gonads and gives both Lissa and Sadie the see-yas. Alone at last, Jenna decides that when all the evidence is laid (layed? still don't know) out, there's not much of a case against Charming Matty. Gavel down, case closed. Let the smoochies commence.
Sigh. God, I love this show.
Update: In my haste to get this post posted, I forgot these:
Best Matty/Jenna moments: Wow, so many! But my favorite favorite is the banter scene in the hallway. So funny and well-written and their timing is perfect. I've rewatched it about 10 times already. The kiss over the table at the restaurant--so perfect. And, of course, the last scene in her room where he casually, and oh so familiarly (is that a word, Grammar Girl?), slips his arm around her waist before kissing her. Mmmm.
Best Quote: Jacked up on Jesus (I'm already trying to figure out how to work this gem into a conversation.)