When we first heard that “Awkward” was going to air two episodes on Tuesday night, making it an hour of new programming that extended well past 11:00 p.m. Eastern, we had one question: Why in the world would you do that? But after watching it, it is starting to make a little bit more sense: This is a show that obviously recognized that Jenna Hamilton’s dark turn was perhaps starting to weigh on people, and it was necessary to show just enough light at the end of the tunnel.
Make no mistake that we still feel like Jenna has not completely gotten herself out of the woods yet. She and Collin are still in a relationship technically, and her scathing review of Valerie is going to come ou in the school paper.
What we are more curious to think about here is whether or not the right impetus for Jenna to snap out of happened at the party, where she started to realize that Collin was trying to put her into a situation that involved ecstasy and also a threesome. Personally, we bought it due to the logic that we had already been presented with. We knew that Jenna wanted to make her own decisions, as this is what she had told her parents so many times before they threatened to kick her out. So in this moment with Collin, she may have finally realized that she was only living out the life that he wanted her to live. There was no real sort of independence here either, and she was better off trying to find a part of who she was again. That is what made that scene with Matty so touching, and why he probably remains the boyfriend that every teenager wishes that they have. He’s not perfect, but he’s always there for you … even when he’s not actually with you.
There were some funny side stories over the course of the hour, from Jake and Tamara fighting about student elections to what we personally consider to be our favorite of the season: Anyone letting Sadie actually have the opportunity to create an after-school special that is really all about her trolling Jenna. We wonder how many times Molly Tarlov gets approached on the street and asked to say something horrible to them. It has to be a lot given how brilliant a character Sadie is.
This was overall just what “Awkward” needed, and also what we as viewers needed to get to the later part of season 3: An explanation as to why this story may have been here, and hope for the other side. The show can now hopefully go back to being sarcastic but not too dark, and it will do so now with a greater amount of self-awareness. Grade: A-.
If you want to read some more news related to “Awkward,” just be sure to click here to find out some more news about how the fourth season will be divided up.