“Fresh Off the Boat” recap: “License to Sell”

I’m finally putting this up! Apologies to the major lack of recap. Here we go.

Eddie is having girl problems again. Once again, he’s trying to get the attention of Nicole, and in order to do so he gets himself thrown in detention to be with her. Eddie does manage to bond with Nicole over stuff, but it’s stuff he hates, like beauty treatments. Nicole is studying to be a cosmetologist and hairstylist, and she uses Eddie as a test subject for her henna tattoo and ear piercing techniques.

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Eddie subjects himself to this torture because he wants to follow the advice Louis gave him, which is to find out what her interests are and use them to spend time with her. But of course, Louis and Jessica don’t like the fact that he’s letting Nicole pierce his ear. Louis tells him that he should just be himself, and if that’s not enough, then Nicole’s not right for her. Jessica also gives Eddie some advice; to never quit, because quitters never win.

This leads to the main story for this week: Jessica having some trouble with her own advice. Jessica is a natural at selling houses, but she’s selling them without a license. In order to become a true real estate agent, she has to take the test. She thinks she’ll be able to just take the test blindly and simply ace it. She gets a rude awakening and fails.

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She feels embarrassed about not being able to pass the test, especially since she’s so hard on her kids to make great grades. Not to mention, she met a star real estate agent that had already sold hundreds of houses in her 10 years in the business. So instead of dealing with egg on her face and doubling down on studying, decides it’s easier to just quit and pretend she has her license.

Louis is doling out tons of advice this episode, since he’s also giving advice to Jessica. He says that she’d set a better example to the kids if she did set out to be the best by not quitting. So, with the help of Evan and Emery, she gets to studying and gets her license. She also develops a plan to quickly get up to the level the star real estate agent.

Louis might have been the wise owl this week, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t have his silly indulgent moments. He spent money on a salon-grade hair dryer chair in order to live out his dreams of hair perfection. He gets his perfect hair, but it also seems like he (and Evan and Emery) get more out of the chair by pretending it’s a space shuttle.

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Okay, some moments that are of worth to me:

• Walter’s a part of the group! Hooray!

• Jermaine Dupri got roasted quite a bit on ABC this week. First, there was Voiceover Eddie saying how he had a chance at Nicole if Dupri was with Janet Jackson. Eddie calling Dupri an “ashy little nugget” sent me howling and shaking my head at the same time. Second, black-ish (which I recap for the Entertainment Weekly Community blog) had Dupri on as a guest star, and made fun of him by having him say hilarious lines like “So So Def!” He was always saying “So So Def” on every song he produced. It got annoying.

•  Jessica said “You jive” to the star real estate agent. I had a mental double-take, simply because I haven’t heard “jive” on TV in a long time, if not ever.

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• The star real estate agent states “Oh, you made that choice” when Jessica reveals that she’s going into the work force from her current job as a stay-at-home mom. I say “current job” because being a stay-at-home mom is work. Anyways, that kind of idea that being a stay-at-home mom is “that choice,” as if it’s not a feminist choice, is something feminism needs to get in check.

Feminism means that women and men can be who they want to be and do what they want to do without adhering to a patriarchal code that negatively affects both sexes, correct? So why are we getting on homemakers’ cases when they DECIDE TO STAY AT HOME?! No one forced Jessica to stay at home, and no one forced my mom, either. If a woman wants to work, fine. If a woman wants to work by being a full-time mom, that’s fine too. GET OVER IT. 

•  Jessica’s practice of making her kids write their test material over five times if they miss something is pretty much my childhood, no joke. My mom really doesn’t think she’s got Tiger Mom sensibilities, but she does. I remember rewriting spelling words (just like Emery) as well as rewriting multiplication tables, having my mom lord over my projects and making me redraw stuff (I entered in a lot of book contests and drew a lot of things for projects), etc., etc. For whatever reason, she doesn’t seem to realize she’s that intense, but, like Jessica, she was doing all that so we could be the best. And, doggonit, we were. For better or worse, we were.

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•  Michael Crichton’s Congo, the book the detention teacher was reading, is a good book. But it’s not Crichton’s best book. His best books, in my opinion: Jurassic ParkThe Andromeda Strain, A Case of Need, and Disclosure.

• The hair dryer chair brings back more childhood memories; my mom bought a home hair dryer so we could all roller-set our hair without using a hand dryer. Ours didn’t have  a chair; it was just the dryer hood and you had to set the unit on a table. But seeing Louis beam with pride while using his dryer chair reminded me of the times I’d sit under our dryer and wait for my hair to get hot and crisp.

Also, Louis’ use of hair net was very much out of my dad’s du-rag days in the ’90s. “But a hair net isn’t the same as a du-rag!” you might be saying. To that, I say “SEMANTICS.” Louis was using the hair net for the same purpose as a du-rag; to protect the ‘do and, if you’re really invested in your hair, you use it to get deep waves. As we have seen, Louis has had Success Perms before; he obviously knows about that hair life.

Photo credit: Michael Ansell/ABC

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