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"Sweet Child O' Mine"

Season 7 Episode 16
American airdate: April 18th, 2008

Boycott the Caf name: The Spaghetti Incident
Important characters: Mia, Jay, Manny
Issue of the Week: Children are a pain

Greetings Boycott the Caffers! Johnny Dangerous here. I know I don't usually venture over into Degrassiland but I'm helping out Billie with the reviews today. Now that Billie has a job and court mandated community service she can't dedicate as much time to reviewing poorly written children's shows as she used to. Don't feel bad for her though, the community service was basically a gift from the judge. If you want to feel bad for somebody feel bad for me, do you know how hard it is to stay 500 feet from an elementary school?

Before I get to the review though I would like to apologize for the character bios. I've been meaning to update those since about 2003. I was going to do it recently but then I realized that I haven't been paying attention for the last three years and don't know what the hell has been going on or where everybody I liked went.

Also a lot of my pictures are blurry. Big whoop, deal with it. Oddly enough it seems to mostly be pictures of Manny and Jay. They are sasquatch.

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The episode starts out with Mia trying out for the Spirit Squad. That's Mia facing away from the camera in case you didn't recognize the back of her head. Manny is all like "You go girl," but some new character named Holly J is all like "Yo, this is a Cheermocracy and I don't want no momma on my team," to which Manny replies, "Oh come on," and Holly J is like, "She's a mom, isn't doing the splits what got her in this mess in the first place," after which everybody watching goes "oooo" and a black guy pops up and yells, "Daaaaamn!"

I swear at least 25% of that last paragraph happened.

Mia assures Holly J that she will be dedicated to the Spirit Squad. Holly J doesn't seem all that sure that Mia has the time cheerleading requires, but seems to be willing to give her the chance, if only so that she can torture and mock Mia. She then says in her best villain imitation, "We'll see how well you do planning the Spirit Squad Dance this week, 8 am tomorrow morning, no excuses." It's all sinister and such until you realize she is talking about a dance for the cheerleading squad, and school probably starts at 8:30 anyways so she only has to get up half an hour earlier than usual.

Boy Meets World

Then some guy named Lucas walks up to Mia and tries hitting on her but she will have none of that. You go girlfriend! You don't need him. He kind of insulted you while asking you out and looks like Harley Keiner from Boy Meets World.

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After the credits we find Mia trying to enter the school, but her hands are full of things. A guy tries to help her himself, but his hands are also full of stuff. Hilarious. This guy looks like Tom Petty's son. He even dresses like Tom Petty and kind of tilts his head like Petty. I'm sure in a few years his head will be tilted even more and he will learn how to play "Free Fallin." It turns out he is also there for the Spirit Squad Dance meeting even though he is apparently not on the Spirit Squad. I guess he just really likes committees.

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Down the street Manny and Jay are walking to school. Well Jay is walking Manny to school. He isn't actually going to school because he was expelled several years ago for shooting Jimmy. You would think he would eventually be let back in or at least could go to another school but I guess in Canada being expelled is kind of like being blacklisted in the 50s.

It also seems that they are engaged. I thought this was just a ruse to fool Manny's parents into letting her become an actress but I guess they fell in love along the way, or possibly she is just a really dedicated method actress. Jay tells Manny that he is going to Hooter's with her father, so Manny gives Jay a titty twister. Manny then asks Jay when she gets to go shoe shopping with his mother.

Jay is obviously awkward when it comes to talking about his parents and makes a blatant lie to Manny saying that she can't meet them because they are in Malta. Any other person would realize Jay isn't ready to talk about his parents and not press the issue, but this is Manny that we're talking about here so she asks why they live in Malta. Jay then explains that his parents were deported but he stayed behind because he was born in Canada. This wouldn't make sense in real life, but half the characters on Degrassi either moved away or were kicked out of their home before turning 18 so it is a plausible lie. Still, very much a lie however. At no time would anybody but Manny believe it.

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In the Spirit Squad Fundraising Dance Committee™ meeting Liberty is saying that nobody can give requests due to the fiasco at the last Spirit Squad Fundraising Dance. I don't know if this is suppose to be a random joke or a reference to another episode but I hope the fiasco was started by somebody requesting Yankee Rose be played. Yankee Rose is too hot for school.

I want you to note two things about the meeting. First off, Liberty is standing behind a podium. Second she is standing in front of a magazine rack. That just seems weird to me.

During the meeting Mia and Son of Petty totally make moon eyes at each other. Oh boy, I bet they are totally crushing <(^.^)>

After the meeting Mia asks if she can have the decorations for the dance after it is finished for her daughter's birthday party. Liberty says "AKA siphon the school resources?" I don't even know what that means. Then they start talking French or something. Then Mia hugs Liberty which really pisses off Liberty for some reason. Maybe she's still holding a grudge about Mia stealing JT and then having her brethren murder him.

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Lucas is waiting for Mia at her locker. She doesn't want to talk to him because he was the one who impregnated her and ruined her life. Lucas walks off and knocks the hat off some random person. Take that you extra! Also Mia finds money in her locker. Its only like 15 dollars (Canadian) but it's nice that Lucas finally decided to pay child support, especially considering the fact that Mai is too poor to afford balloons and crepe paper. Those costs like a dollar per package.

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In science class the teacher is doing a lecture on cutting glass with diamonds. That dude is a cat burglar. He wants to test the students "bling" by seeing if it will cut glass. Manny volunteers and uses the ring Jay gave her for the fake engagement which is now real. To her surprise it cuts the glass. That is an actual diamond! Later on Manny has the science teacher tell her how much the ring is worth. He knows because in addition to being a thief he is also a fence. This is the guy Jay sold all that AV equipment to.

Emma points out that it makes no sense for Jay to give Manny a real diamond for a fake engagement. Manny comes clean and tells Emma she and Jay are engaged. Emma immediately assumes it is because Manny is pregnant. Emma knows Manny well.

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Mia and Holly J meet at a restaurant to further plan the dance they are having at the end of the week. Really if you only have less then a week until the dance then most of the plans should already be in place. Mia has her daughter in tow which is Bad News Bears because it is hard to plan a dance with your kid begging for food because you are too poor to feed her.

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To further make things awkward some yuppies with a kid ask Mia if she is planning on having her daughter's party at Playground Paradise. Of course Mia isn't. She is an unwed teenage mother and cannot afford to rent Playground Paradise. Those yuppies know very well that she isn't having the party there. The party is five days away and they are invited, they just need to look at the invitation to know that it isn't at Playground Paradise. They only asked her so that they could feel better about being able to afford to rent Playground Paradise for their son.

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Back at school Lucas confronts Mia, asking why she will take his money but not talk to him. Mia points out that he abandoned her while she was pregnant and asks Lucas why he all of a sudden wants back in her life. Lucas has the great reason that it is because he sees her everyday. This reunion would have happened a lot faster if Mia wouldn't have transferred.

Lucas makes it very clear that he only cares about Mia, not the kid. Then Holly J comes up, refers to the two of them talking as a "Trailer park reunion" and orders Mia to help paint leaves while calling Mia's daughter a rug rat. Damn, Paige was a stuck up bitch, but Holly J is just plain evil. Paige at least pretended to be nice sometimes. Mia makes Lucas babysit the baby while she paints leaves even though he has no interest in his child, only in making new ones.

Mia's mother is not happy to find out Lucas wants to be part of his daughter's life. Mia's mom says that Lucas is a no good honkey who walked out when he was needed most. Mia says she wants Lucas to be part of her life because she finally has things together, pointing out that she is on the Spirit Squad. Finally having her life together does not include getting a job and supporting herself. It is then revealed that Mia's mother can't watch her granddaughter the night of the dance because she has to work. Mia is upset that her mother won't switch shifts with somebody. Mia is selfish.

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At school Lucas is hanging out his friends. I have no idea what they are doing. One guy appears to be trying to use a payphone while the one with the blonde mullet knocks over the phone book and Lucas says nice. What the fuck Degrassi director, what the fuck?

Mia asks Lucas if he is going to the school dance. He tries to be cool and say no but that he will go if she wants him to. She does not want him to. Mia tells Lucas he is babysitting again. Lucas ain't getting no action tonight. It's funny because Lucas totally tries to kiss Mia and she shoots him down with a hug and you can see his one friend in the back shaking his head disappointedly

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Manny and Jay are living it up at the dance. Jay also appears to have been mistaken about the theme. The theme is spring fever, not Weekend at Bernie's. Manny reveals that she bought plane tickets to Malta so that they can visit Jay's parents. I guess she really wants those shoes. This is probably the kind of thing she should have ran past Jay so that Jay could tell her which island of Malta his parents live on.

Jay's reaction to the plane tickets is kind of like my reaction to the time I found my best friend spooning my dog. Still it takes Manny a few more minutes to realize that Jay's parents don't really live in Malta. Damn, girl is dense. Manny is pissed that Jay lied to her, and personally I feel she is being insensitive towards Jay about what is obviously a sensitive issue he is not comfortable discussing.

Jay tries apologizing to Manny about the lies and discovers that Manny pawned the ring to buy the tickets. The ring belonged to Jay's dead mother. That's kind of worse than lying.

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Outside the dance Mia and Son of Petty are stamping the hands of people entering the dance. Lucas's friends show up and try to get into the dance without a hand stamp. Those are some dirty rapscallions. Mia says no, so the guy who looks like he doesn't bathe implies Mia is a whore because she is standing outside of a building with Son of Petty while Lucas is at home with the child, even though Mia is not dating Lucas. Mia lets him in the dance so that he will stop calling her a whore. Score one for Lucas's friend. He got into the dance for free.

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Mia and Son of Petty decide to be irresponsible and go dance. Tons of people sneak into the dance without paying during this time, including Lucas who pops out of nowhere pissed that Mia is dancing with another man even though they are not dating. Son of Petty is bewildered by the revelation that Mia has a child. He basically does a spit take without any water. Lucas then calls Mia a scammer because she had him babysit, again firmly cementing the fact that he cares nothing about his daughter and only wants to get back with Mia.

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The next day Mia asks Holly J if there is any money from Lucas in the locker they share. Holly J says no and basically tells Mia that she should get together with Lucas because as an unwed teenage mother no other man will touch her except JT and he is dead. To quote Holly J's sensitive words of advice, "Newsflash mama Mia, choosy went bye bye when your water broke." Mia then leans against her locker and we get a close up shot of her face while she tries to act sad and sad music plays. It really hammers home the fact that this is a sad scene.

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During cleanup of the dance Mia looks sadly at Son of Petty who is scared of getting attacked by Joey the Enforcer and will no longer have anything to do with her. Liberty tells Mia that she shouldn't get together with Lucas because he is an asshole who beats people up. Mia is down on herself saying that she doesn't fit in anywhere. Liberty responds by telling Mia that she is doing a good job "juggling Spirit Squad and daycare pickups" which reminds Mia that she has a daughter who needs to be picked up from day care. Mia's daughter's birthday party also begins very soon. Mia is a horrible mother.

Mia gets back home and her mother yells at her because it is almost party time. Also children's aid is going to be called if Mia is late picking up her kid from day care again. That's pretty harsh. In America you pretty much have to be seen punching your kid in the face before children's services can do anything. I guess Canada can be stricter because there are only about 500 kids they need to be watching at any single time.

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This is the most subdued children's party I've ever seen. Every single one of my little brother's parties was a messy orgy of water sports and hot dogs. Outside parties are the fun part of a summer birthday I guess. None of the kid's parents are at the party either. I thought you stuck around at the party when your kid is only three. What if he or she poops in his or her pants or pantaloons? The parents probably took the opportunity to have loud violent sex.

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Lucas shows up at the party with a bad ass electric scooter in tow. I think he stole it from John Dorian the awkward young doctor who works at Sacred Heart hospital in downtown Toronto. He was definitely aided by the janitor during this caper.

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Manny and Jay are both walking down the street leaving each other messages on the other's voice mail. Then they walk into each other. Classic cell phone humor. Manny mentions possibly selling the tickets on Ebay. She probably should have bought tickets that could have been returned if it turned out they were flying into the wrong part of Malta. Or maybe it didn't matter because there is only one airport in Malta and you get to the other islands by commandeering a fishing boat or something.

Jay gives Manny his fake mustache as a symbol that he will never lie to her again, although he doesn't state it that punctually. Jay also reveals that he hates his father's third wife, made a scene at their wedding and lost touch with them which he considers to be a losery thing to do. That is why he didn't want to tell Manny about his parents. Manny forgives him and everything is resolved except for locating Jay's dead mother's ring. It's then revealed that neither Jay nor Manny know where Malta is. Malta is in the Mediterranean Sea.

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Back at the party Mia is rocking out with her first toy to cost more then ten dollars. Lucas says that Mia should tell her daughter that he is her father. That sentence is confusing. Lucas points out that he has a job so he can provide for Mia and their daughter. The episode ends with Mia agreeing to give their relationship another shot. Holly J may have sounded mean when she said Mia had no hopes of doing better, but it looks like Mia agreed. Making concessions in life is what you have to do sometimes. Mia has a daughter to take care of and she can't do it alone. Mia needs to look herself in the mirror and say, "What is best for me and that sweet child o' mine.

Rating: C+
It was a pretty good episode I guess. They did a good job of showing Mia to be desperate to have a normal life yet unable to with the lead weight of a child around her neck. The episode would have worked better if Lucas had at least pretended to be interested in his daughter, not just hooking up with Mia. It seems like a real life mother would want to hook up with her ex only if he loved the child they produced.

The Jay-Manny story worked out fine. It was silly and stupid but almost like a sitcom except Jay did a pretty good job of acting, unlike the cast of Sabrina the Teenage Witch. Compared to the average TGIF line up, this section of the episode holds up fine.

I just realized that if I go based purely off of this episode, two thirds of the cast has disappeared. Where is Spinner?

Does It Go There?
Holly J goes there. Pretty much every time she said I line I had to respond by hooting and yelling "Awww yeah she went there!"

Who Should Get Kicked In The Face This Week? Lucas
He made it clear that taking care of his kid was only a means to hook up with Mia. He could at least faked loving his child, that's what my parents did.

Final Thoughts:
Mia says Lucas is the only man who will accept her because she has a child. What about JT? Sure he is dead but he at least shows that another man will take her in. Maybe Mia thinks JT is one of a kind, or maybe she thinks he only dated her because he dated Liberty first. Mia should go after Towerz. He dated Liberty but was also a Candy Bandit. That makes Towerz much cooler then Lucas. Lucas might be able to steal a scooter but Towerz can hook you up with fifty pounds of chocolate and all he needs is three hours notice.

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