MTV’s Awkward season 3 premiered last week with back-to-back episodes: “Cha-cha-cha-changes” and “Responsibly Irresponsible.” Every year is marked by a mystery. This year seems to be the mystery of who was responsible for Ricky Swartz’s (Matthew Fahey) death. Is it me or is Lissa (Greer Grammer) a little too upset about Ricky having a peanut allergy? Makes me wonder if she wasn’t one of his many hookups. He did get a lot of yogurt over the summer. RIP Ricky Swartz. Who knew you were such a budding boob artist. He took his mother’s prolonged breast-feeding and man-whore ways as inspiration for his pimp self-portrait.
Everyone reacts to Ricky’s death differently. Matty gets all touchy-feely because unlike Ricky, he is still alive. He wants to spread his love around by trying to have sex with Jenna in public. He then embraces Jake and advises him to tell Tamara how he feels. Tamara is feels guilty and thinks she is responsible for Ricky’s death. He online spells and voodoo doll of Ricky must have did the trick. She lashes out by saying everyone even Jake is being insensitive about Ricky’s death.
At the end of season 2, Jenna (Ashley Rickards) picked Matty (Beau Mirchoff) over Jake (Brett Davern). She then made the decision to stay with her boyfriend over the summer instead of going on the Europe trip with Tamara (Jillian Rose Reed).
The season opens up with Jenna coming out of her Matty bubble and feeling apprehensive about the new school year. She didn’t speak to BFF Tamara or Ming (Jessica Lu) all summer. It’s assumed her first day jitters are from feeling out of the loop with her friends but turns out to be much more. Val (Desi Lydic) enrolled her into a creative writing class without her knowledge. The sadistic tyrant of a teacher, Mr. Hart is wonderfully portray by Anthony Michael Hall (Breakfast Club and Sixteen Candles fame). He yells at the students and has them quaking in fear. Mr. Hart has everyone write down their fears and he reads them out loud. One fear in particular catches everyone’s attention: “I am debating my fear of life and death and wondering if it should be my choice.” Prep school transfer and potential new crush Collin (Nolan Funk of Glee) points out the fear is about pregnancy and not suicide. He’s cute, deep and smart. Matty better watch out.
Jenna later confesses to Matty she is afraid of being left behind and all alone. Matty assures Jenna that won’t happen because she has him. Everyone is in their own little world and Jenna has no one to confide in except her mom, Lacy (Nikki Deloach). They have come along way since the care-frontation letter. Jenna sees that out of everyone, her mom will understand what she is going through. Turns out all the feelings of doubt Jenna is going through is from a pregnancy scare. She realizes after talking to her mom that if she was pregnant, she would make the choice to keep the baby like her mom decided to keep her. Disaster averted for now. Jenna is not going to be a new character on 16 and Pregnant. With some words of wisdom from her mom and a plaque on the OBGYN wall, Jenna realizes she has to be the vigilant one because girls get pregnant and not boys. After weeks of fending off Matty and keeping quiet about the pregnancy scare, Jenna gets birth control, gets drunk at the Ricky Swartz kegger memorial, and blurts out to Jake about almost being preggers.
Tamara and Jake made a connection while on their Europe trip. They declare their love in French and call one another “TT” and “Jacque.” It is quite hilarious and I especially love Jake’s Euro scarf and sunglasses. They are morphing into one person, even creating a couple’s Facebook page. Tamara is still a little uncertain if the connection was only a vacation fling or if it will translate into a lasting relationship now that they are state side. Jake is a self-proclaim serial monogamous so it isn’t long before Tamara gets the DTR she needs. Jakenna is dead and Jakara is in business.
Ming (Jessica Lu) revealed she was working for her grandparents in Moorpark all summer and learning Mandarin. She seems a little secretive with her Asian Mafia reconnect and having quiet Asian boy, Henry follow her around. Henry doesn’t say much and seems to only be available for boob grabs and “tune-ups” at the sanctuary. The Asian mafia and Becca (Jessica Van) notices. They grill Ming about Henry and the relationship. As it turns, out Ming is playing the mafia. Henry is her beard because she is still seeing Fred Wu (Kelly Sry) on the down low. The Asian mafia had Fred’s house re-districted so he had to transfer to a new school. Ming is fighting back with her newfound Chinese language skills and staying one step ahead of the mafia.
Sadie (Molly Tarlov) is still bitchy and biting but not exactly acting like herself. She is seen throwing up in the bathroom and overeating that leads everyone to think she is carrying Ricky Swartz’s love child. The school goes from offering condolences to suspecting she had something to do with Ricky’s death. Sadie quickly turns into the school pariah. Sadie’s family is broke. Her father left town and her mother is in rehab for exhaustion. Sadie is alone at school at home. She confides in Matty and turns to him for a shoulder to cry on. Sadie isn’t throwing up because of a bun in the oven but from a possible eating disorder. Jenna tries to console Sadie but she won’t have Hammil-toe feeling sorry for her. Sadie’s dislike for Jenna stems from seeing in Jenna strengths that she, herself doesn’t possess. Jenna was the school cliché two years ago and she survived it by not letting it destroy her. Then Jenna gets Matty, the guy that Sadie has always crushed on. Sadie is question by Val and a private investigator. Ricky’s death was sexual in nature so Sadie being the last girl he was with is the main suspect. Sadie reveals it couldn’t be her because she is still a virgin.
The third episode, “A Little Less Conversation” aired Tuesday, April 23. Matty knows about the pregnancy scare from Jake at the end of episode 2. He was upset but now wants to talk to Jenna. Fearing Matty may want to break-up Jenna uses all types of tactics to avoid being alone with Matty. She tries to distract him with sex and then resorts to going on a BFGFBFF double date with Tamara, Jake, Ming, and mute Henry. Chinese fire drills (no offense Ming and Henry) and charades only makes things worst. Jake and Jenna have an almost Vulcan mind meld with their skills of guessing each other’s clues and having inside jokes about songs. Tamara who is not one to keep quiet calls Jenna out on it saying she isn’t borrowing Jake like the necklace Jenna let her wear that Jake gave her. Tamara and Jake are together now. Jenna needs to stop avoiding the conversation because she doesn’t want to be hurt. Only now she is hurting Matty. Jake comes in and apologizes to Tamara after taking only a few minutes to figure out the Jenna/Jake show wasn’t sitting well with Tamara or Matty. Tamara admits Jake is the girl so it makes them both the girls in the relationship. The moment of truth. Jenna overhears Matty talking to Sadie about how he would like o come over but has to talk to Jenna first. They finally come clean about everything. Matty wonders why it can’t be easy with them like it is with Jenna and Jake. Jenna tells Matty her and Jake are friends and she has always found it easy to talk to Jake. Could it be because Jake always told Jenna how he felt. She never had to wonder. Matty wants to be the one Jenna confide in. He doesn’t want to only feel connected with her when they have sex. Jenna finally tells Matty she is afraid that if anything goes wrong he will bail. She always felt he was ashamed of being with her. He tells her that is not true. They finally have the talk and seal it with a kiss while Fred is seen jumping over the fence in the background.
I like how this season is expanding beyond the Matty-Jake-Jenna universe to allow Tamara, Ming and Sadie to shine a little. Things still seem up in the air with Matty and Jenna. Their relationship was built on casual hook-ups. How do you overcome the baggage and hang-ups to move the relationship into something more meaningful? Only time will tell.
Watch Awkward Tuesdays 10/9 C on MTV.