Tonight, “The Fosters” began its new episode “Cruel and Unusual” by giving us a reminder of just how much trouble the entire Adams Foster family is in at the moment. We knew that they were going through hell, but nothing was getting any easier.
For example, just look at Stef being told a thing or two about Brandon not getting into Julliard, and then him keeping it a secret. This seemed to be the final straw in the decision to tear down some of the doors of the home — no more secrets, and no more acting in secret. This seems like a lot of work, but who knows? Maybe it will help something with this divided family. (Oh, and Stef had to deal with a visibly angry Robert Quinn, who wanted to feel included in the decisions more than he was so far.)
Callie’s struggle in Juvenile Hall – Not only was she tasked with having to deal with a terrible, abusive guard, but she was facing the possibility of having to stay there until she turned 18. The public defender told her that her choices were to either stay there for the next eight months and have her record expunged, or run the risk of being tried as an adult. If that happens and if she was convicted, she could run the risk of being in jail for five years and having a record.
Eventually, Robert Queen turned up to offer her the same thing that he offered Stef and Lena — an opportunity to use his attorneys, which could in turn help to ensure that she’s able to get off on the charges if she does decide to go to trial. Eventually, Robert confronted Stef and Lena further at trial, knowing that they withheld some information from him about what was coming up. This is where there was conflict — Callie didn’t want to go back to Juvy, and with that, she made the decision to take Robert’s advice, over her parents, and fight some of the charges that could be handed her way.
The question at the end of the episode was whether or not Callie would be tried as an adult. Unfortunately, she was, and this meant the next step would be seeing if she could be acquitted in adult court. She’ll have Robert’s attorney if she wants it, but even that may not be enough thanks to her record. She’s home for now, but it may not last forever. At least she has AJ at her side, who admitted to her in a letter that he loved her.
Mike’s decision – It’s been some time since we’ve seen him have a big story like this, as he decided to ask Ana to come and live with him. Unfortunately, what he didn’t realize was that because Ana was a felon, this could cause problems given that AJ was his foster son. Child Protective Services may not agree with that. Mike also asked AJ if he wanted him to adopt him, which could resolve some of these issues. We’d say that this was a selfish ask on his part, but we also know that Mike loves the kid. Therefore, it’s wrong to view the move from that specific and singular of a lens.
The state of Jesus – Here’s some happy news finally — he’s on the road to recovery. Unfortunately, the bad news is that his brain functions and memory are still limited, and it’s taking him some time. Lena and Stef also are doing their part to keep visits a minimum, mostly because of the fact that too much attention or reactions could startle him and make it harder for him to recover.
In the end, Lena and Stef decided that the best thing they could do for Jesus was explore rehab options. Yet, they opted in the end to have him recover at home. In doing so, unfortunately it meant Lena having to take a leave of absence. Unfortunately, we were reminded by Jesus’ behavior how difficult this is going to be, and how quickly his emotions can turn on a dime.
Our overall take – This was a strong episode that showed real characters struggle with real issues. Everyone wanted the best for Callie, but that didn’t mean that the system would agree. As depressing as the show’s been as of late, it was nice to see that there were a few moments of hope near the end. Grade: B.
Next week – Let’s just say that we’re going to see Stef continue her quest. You can head over here to get some other news when it comes to the future of the show. (Photo: Freeform.)