In which this show decides, “you know what? WE NEED MORE WIVES UP IN HERE!” You guys, you really really don’t. That said, what this episode failed to do in continuity of character (spoiler: Betty is kind of a ditzy hick now? I don’t know), it more than made up for in VINTAGE BATHING SUITS. I always feel bad for the costume department when they’re doing a great job and the show is bad. They’re never going to get the recognition that they actually deserve. I RECOGNIZE YOU, COSTUME DEPARTMENT!
ANYWAY, let’s run down what’s happening with our Astrowives, with the caveat that no one goes into space this week (…even though the episode is called “Liftoff”). But the Cuban Missile Crisis does happen, even though mostly everyone doesn’t seem that worried, except for Max Caplan: Reporter, because he’s both a journalist and the only character who really gets a clear set of feelings assigned to him weekly.
Marge and Deke: Marge is the drabbest looking Wife all week, and I guess it’s because she and Deke are on a really soul-sucking diet to fix his heart problem? (THAT’S why he quit drinking last week. It was more fun when I decided he was a closet alcoholic.) ANYWAY, he doesn’t get ungrounded, but then the rest of the astronauts do… something … off-camera… that gets Deke elected, like, Head Astronaut? And everyone is happy? I don’t know exactly, but what YOU should know is that basically everything The Astronauts Do happens when they appear to be sitting in an unlit break room at an unspecified Houston location. I’m pretty sure these dudes would have offices AND I’m also pretty sure that AT THE VERY LEAST, all the lights were on at NASA DURING THE CUBAN MISSILE CRISIS. Anyway, I don’t care about Marge anymore now that I’m sure there will be no revelation that she was once a geisha.
Annie and John: NADA.
Trudy and Gordo: I realized my issue with Trudy’s character is that they’re trying to make her BOTH the Modern Girl Pilot With Moxie and someone who is sort of prim and uptight with Gordon, and those two emotional stories don’t really mesh. At any rate, they’re totally (still) on the road to getting back together, and now we all know that Trudy has a vibrator. (At the end of the episode, she finds that Gordo has taped a picture of his face to it, which legitimately made me laugh and totally would have made me decide to take him back.)
Louise and Alan and Max Caplan: Reporter: MC:R and Louise are at FULL FLIRT — he dances with her in a barn during the Cuban Missile Crisis, for pete’s sake. (I would like, also, to note that the fact that NO ONE reacted to POSSIBLE NUCLEAR ANNIHILATION by banging is why this show is bad. YOU GUYS. You have a couple on the brink of getting back together. Instead of having Gordo get drunk with his boys and tell them about Trudy’s vibrator, you OBVIOUSLY have the two of them realize we’re all about to die, and accordingly GET IT ON. THAT IS SO CLEARLY CLEARLY CLEARLY how you handle that plot.) Nothing happens, but she’s obviously sort of sweet on him also and blah blah blah this plot will never resolve to anyone’s narrative satisfaction. Also, Louise had a sister who died and she and Alan are raising their niece, who also happens to find condoms in Alan’s Just In Case I Need To Flee Houston bag. At least Alan is using protection, Louise. At least there’s that.
Betty and Gus: Betty is now a woman who mows her own lawn with curlers in her hair while a Space Tour Bus drives by, and at the end of the episode she induces Jo to chainsaw a hole in the fence between their yards so they can run back and forth without being detected. So maybe she’s secretly got Space Madness???
Rene and Scott: Rene wears a series of good outfits and her wig is maybe slightly better this week? Hot Neighbor Wade has two lines.
Jo and Wally: Jo is sort of the crux of this week’s A story, which was nominally about the ladies being accepted into Houston Society; she’s all into joining the Junior League, but in the end they don’t ask her, for reasons that are never clear, in typical frustrating Astronauts Wives Clubs fashion. Do they not like her? Did she make a gaffe? Was it an accident? Was it because Betty was sort of ridiculous at every event? Was it because Jo was sort of scold-y of Betty at said events? WHO KNOWS. And then she’s sad. THE END.
Whatever. TO THE SWIMSUITS.