“The Fosters” really manages to do some amazing things when it comes to cramming as much content as they do into roughly 42-44 minutes sans commercials. “Minor Offenses” Monday night is proof of that. This was an episode that furthered along almost every story, or at least every one other than Stef and Lena.
Even the show tonight briefly touched on that in discussing Lena’s guilt over not feeling sick while Stef has undergone what she has to prevent breast cancer. The show’s exploring some understandable human emotions in varying age groups, which is nice and perfectly believable. It’s something similar to what Mariana is going through at school right now, feeling jealous over some of Lexi’s popularity. It may seem incredibly petty to every adult out there watching the show, but it happens.
The focus to us of much of the episode this week was Callie, who took on a pair of different issues with varying results. First, we liked her taking such a proactive role in trying to help AJ’s brother, who did some very bad things but seemed ready for some redemption. Sure, he’s still going to jail, but for 18 months rather than five years since the whole grand-theft auto part of his charge went away. This is the sort of bravery we’re used to from her, which is why we don’t completely buy into her getting sucked in to Justina’s plans to reform the foster-care system with some privatized measures that may not be that much of a universal fix.
Do we think that Justina in her mind thinks she’s doing the right thing? Sure, but as with any other politician, sometimes change is really just spinning things in the favor of some. Rita, Stef, and Lena all weighed in here, and hopefully Callie focuses more on the small scale here than working with someone who’s not entirely trustworthy just yet. This, coupled with the latest in Brandon’s personal life (did he really need another love interest so soon?), were the worst parts of the night.
We never want to end on a down note, so let’s close with Jesus, a character that has in our mind improved very much since the beginning of this season. Knowing now that Gabe is a registered sex offender list because of running away with Ana (who was 15 when he was 18, and the report came out through her parents) makes this situation less black-and-white than what it was; yet, he still doesn’t want anything to do with his son, which is rather heartbreaking for a guy in Jesus who is still just trying to find his footing in the world.
So while not a perfect episode, “The Fosters” put forth a lot of effort in “Minor Offenses.” If that continues, there is a lot to celebrate with this show. Grade: B.
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