Editor's note: As many of you know, Bravo debuted a new show about the L.A. food scene recently. Since some of us spend our
Sundays Thursdays watching sports instead of reality television (yes, even if it's about food; especially if it's about food), we though we'd ask a writer who writes more about television than about restaurants to cover the series. Read on for her weekly updates.
A bonus episode of Eat Drink Love aired last night, as the show has now moved to Thursday nights because the universe wants us all to relax and watch Homeland on Sunday evenings in a few weeks.
Yesterday's episode was a little light on the type of dramatic conflict one expects from a Bravo show, or just any story in general. Did anything really happen? It was like going to Veggie Grill, getting a side of quinoa pilaf because they're out of the Santa Fe Crispy Chickin' Sandwich, feeling empty and wanting, and driving through In-N-Out Burger on the way home. In this case, In-N-Out was a preview to next week's episode, when the whole group takes a road trip to wine country.
What yesterday's episode did have: a dad, two dates, a confrontation, a sister-to-sister talk, and a break-out comedian.
The Dad: Jessica meets with her dad, Alan, Vice President of an insurance company, resemble-r of Lorne Michaels and tough customer, who squeezed her in between meetings while he was in Los Angeles for business. She shows him Fuku Burger before they eat at Café Etc. because coffee is for closers, not Buta Burgers. Dad Alan gives Jessica business advice about, “this Fuku burger thing you're doing,” quizzes Jessica on her “end game,” and tells her that she needs to earn respect and learn from other people.
Jessica continuously seeks his approval, telling him that one day she hopes to facilitate the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. Taking her renewed sense of business confidence, she has a second meeting with mixologist Lindsay, who we can now assume is an actual cast member and not just “Nina's friend who likes taxidermy.” Jessica gets visibly annoyed that Lindsay doesn't have any drink ideas written down for her and Lindsay explains that the reason she doesn't is because Jessica never responded with a budget.
Then Jessica nearly falls off her bar stool when Lindsay tell her that she charges $5K as a “friend rate” for her services, to which Lindsay responds, “I don't think that Jessica takes what I do very seriously. It's kind of like asking a contractor and saying, 'Hey I just want you to make my house really cool and awesome!' And the contractor says, 'Okay we need an idea of how much you want to spend' and they're like 'Oh whatever it's just going to be fun!!'” The scene ends with high-pitched pleasantries and shoulder shrugs from both parties, which Alan would not approve of.
The Dates: Jessica goes on a date with Edward, a costumer she met while working at Fuku. After finishing his busy day doing something with insurance, he hops on his motorcycle and takes her for a wild ride to dinner. Over burgers and beer, Jessica talks about work to ease her nerves in what is edited to look like 17 hours of her non-stop babbling to an apathetic man in a fedora.
Edward suggests she starts to do other things for herself outside of work, but listen, bro, we don't know you very well, so maybe she should do whatever she wants, so like, stop telling her what to do because you're not her father and she's not going to listen to you so just mind your own business. Until later he surprises her with a hoodie that was stashed in his hog, so maybe she'll give it a second date after all, because it was like, super cute.
Waylynn, whose icebox cake has been approved to be on the Tar & Roses menu, visits the restaurant to train the staff how to make it, which turns out to be just one bewildered man, Efrain. She and Andrew flirt while Efrain stands nearby, not amused and probably wondering what the hell a camera crew is doing in the kitchen and why his boss is giggling so much. But mostly he's probably concerned that they're going to get-it-on right then and there and he's already mentally anticipating the stress he will face bleaching his entire workspace.
Waylynn's storyline leads to a music video-esque montage of her getting dressed, complete with close-ups of her tattoos, unbuttoned shirt, and heels. We don't know why this is all happening until she informs us that she is going on a date with Andrew and we figure Bravo wants the world to see how girls get dressed before dates. It's always that eloquent, world.
Waylynn and Andrew meet at Lola, where she vets him about his dating history and his past engagement, and lets him know that she's only there because her friends want her to be, which he knows is a girl lie. Andrew passes the test due to his former committed nine-year relationship, so they play pool into the night complete with the obligatory “hug her while she's bent over about to shoot the ball” pose and a passionate kiss. The romance is on. At least enough for her to finally go to Elizabeth Mason Couture with her rockin' $10,000 Monique Lhuillier wedding dress and sell it for real this time.
The Confrontation: Jessica invites everyone to Pink Taco so she can have a fun night with “the girls” and spy on her staff at the same time, though it's not really spying if they know you're there, right? Not only does Jessica host the cast at her restaurant, she also presents each of them with a homemade pink glittered sake set, because besides a business machine, she is a mini-Martha Stewart and everyone reaps the exciting benefits.
Except guess who hates glitter, gifts and glue guns, and makes it known at dinner? Lindsay. Guess who decides to shout out in an emotional outburst that she doesn't have the mixologist job and that she'd rather set five thousand dollars on fire or throw it into a bathtub and swim in it instead of hire Lindsay? Jessica. The passive-aggressive mini-confrontation ends before it began and Brenda, Kat, Waylynn and Nina uncomfortably eat queso y guacamole and wonder when they can go home and watch Mad Men in their yoga pants.
The Sister to Sister Talk: Handling her emotions in more of an intimate setting is Brenda, who meets with Kat at Bodega Wine Bar for their weekly business catch-up session and fashion scarf meeting. Brenda decides to confront Kat, who tells her that she has recently been in talks with John Terzian, owner of SHOREbar, about a consulting gig for his new restaurant, which he knows nothing about except where the DJ will go.
See also: A Night Out with John Terzian
Kat's business meeting with John led to dinner at Il Covo, where she shared intimate details about her relationship with her parents, because she trusts John and is into him. Brenda is not okay with this. Playing the slightly jealous older sister who looks out for the best interests of her family (but not really), Brenda lets Kat know that she has a “reputation” in this town and people think she sleeps with everyone she writes about. Kat then goes to the jukebox, blares Joan Jett's “Bad Reputation” and headbangs her way out of the wine bar, smashing wine bottles all over the floor. Just kidding.
Kat defends herself and, based on what the audience has seen thus far, it looks as if she does nothing more than just flirt and giggle and Brenda is overreacting. We don't know if anything was resolved and the heart-to-heart talk ends flat, but we do know that if this were a boxing match where you receive points based on exaggerated, comical reaction faces, Kat wins.
Break-out comedian: Jessica. For saying, “I have recently found out that, like, crafting is my therapy,” with a straight face. Though, on her girl date with Kat at Sweet Crush, Jessica finds out that her PR team pitched Kat another person with her job title. Her team “threw her under the bus.” Does she even have a job anymore? Probably, but if not, it looks like sparkle lanyards and découpage picture frames are in everyone's future.
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