The Fosters “More Than Words” Review (Season 3, Episode 4)

MAIA MITCHELL, HAYDEN BYERLY, GAVIN MACINTOSH

On last night’s episode of the ABC Family drama The Fosters, the primary focus was on labels: gay, straight, transgender (to name but a few). But the focus was also on a derogatory word used against blacks; a word that should never be used at all; but a word that was uttered by Lena’s brother Nate toward her mother Dana.

Granted he was an angry 17-year-old boy who didn’t want to be visiting them for the summer; but one hurtful word that left a lasting impression on Lena, who was never able to truly forgive her brother for saying it, leaving a rift between them (and to an extent between herself and her mother) for over 20 years.

With the family together for a reunion dinner (of sorts) at Lena and Stef’s home, you would think that the hatchet could finally be buried on this ugly history within the family; but not so. And that is one of the great things about this TV show. It doesn’t take the easy way out of any storyline. It depicts a real family situation without any gloss, without a simple “happy ending”. It’s raw and real; and where this ugly word is concerned, the actions of Nate’s dad Stuart were, well, spot-on. He “took the side” of his wife and daughter, especially in light of the fact that Nate refused to admit he did anything wrong.

Elsewhere, Marianna was surprised by a visit from her boyfriend Mat, who drove 9 hours to see her – or mores specifically 9 hours in order to have sex with her before the band goes on an extended tour. No cool, Mat; not cool at all. Although Marianna isn’t really any better because she had sex with Wyatt and has kept it quiet from everyone, even telling Callie that she had sex with Mat before he left on tour. When the truth does come out, it’s not going to be pretty at all.

Then there is Brandon dealing with Idyllwild diva Kat, who has been making his summer at the exclusive music program nothing short of a living hell. But his using an obscure piece by Bach for his fugue (a musical composition) submission backfired. Granted it may have proven just how much of a bitch Kat really is, but it hurt him too, as they both got kicked out of the program.

And lastly, Cole from Callie’s time at Girls United, was invited to join the kids for a day at the beach where he shared that he helped to organize an LGBTQ prom; but when asked who he was taking as a date, Callie learned that he was going stag. Having none of that, Callie said that she would go as his date; and Connor and Jude were invited along too. But despite new foster kid AJ telling Callie that Cole thought it was a real date, she didn’t believe him and learned the truth the hard way when Cole tried to kiss her in the middle of the dance.

I give Callie credit for not only telling Cole that she didn’t mean to hurt his feelings but also that she values his friendship and, in fact, looks up to him too. As she told Cole, she has had two boyfriends in her life and she really just needs a good friend. Hopefully that will suffice with Cole for now; but given what AJ said to her at the end of the episode – that he was a little jealous of Cole – Callie could have more attention than she wants from him.

What did you think of this episode of ‘The Fosters’? Please share your thoughts in our comments section below and remember that the next new episode of the show will air on ABC Family on Monday, July 6 at 8/7c.

Cast:
Teri Polo as Stef
Sherri Saum as Lena
Maia Mitchell as Callie
David Lambert as Brandon
Cierra Ramirez as Mariana
Hayden Byerly as Jude
Danny Nucci as Mike Foster

Guest stars:
Gavin MacIntosh as Connor
Tom Williamson as AJ
Katherine McNamara as Kat
Keean Johnson as Tony
Travis Schuldt as Nate
Toks Olagundoye as Faith
Jordan Rodrigues as Mat
Tom Phelan as Cole
Bruce Davison as Stuart
Lorraine Toussaint as Dana