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'Couples Therapy' recap: Everybody loves meatballs

Season 5 | Episode 9 | “Meatball Problems” | Aired Nov 5, 2014

Last week’s Couples Therapy was intense. Between Nikki’s mini-revelation about Juan Pablo, Jenna’s breakthrough about her family, and Treach’s confrontation with his dad, things don’t look like they could get much more dramatic. Just kidding, folks. Things get way more dramatic this episode. It is reality television, after all.

Screen Shot 2014-11-05 at 2.03.55 PMThis week, we pick up just as Treach returns to his room to work through his feelings about his dad’s nonchalance. He expresses his disbelief to Cicely about how little Kent gave him during the session, and Treach merely wants to be heard. Cicely plays the dutiful wife and offers him the comfort he needs at the moment. I guess I’m not mad at her anymore.

Treach’s dad, Kent, stays behind after Treach leaves. He talks with Dr. Jenn and she tries to make him understand what all this means for Treach. Kent is reluctant to say the things he needs to, and Dr. Jenn throws her hands up, temporarily. When they part ways, Dr. Jenn goes to comfort Treach to make sure he understands that there is something missing in Kent, not him. She reminds him that it’s not his fault, but his disappointment is palpable.

Just when we thought that Kent was the biggest asshole in the world, we see that he’s not the heartless Screen Shot 2014-11-05 at 2.04.30 PMdeadbeat that he seemed. He is upset and crying, and Dr. Jenn brings them together in the reunion we were hoping for all along. Treach sees his dad falling apart, hears his apology, and sees that he loves him and reaches out to embrace him. I don’t usually get emotional at reality TV (who am I kidding? yes I do), but if this exchange between these two men doesn’t move you, you probably should check your capability for human emotion.

After the heavy day they’ve had, Treach and Cicely head to the pool with the rest of the bunch, but things get a little awkward when Chris and Deena argue about who gives who the best massages. As cute as they are, I can’t abide this nonsense. Their argument is so trivial that the rest of the group laughs. I can’t take this seriously, but the underlying issues about control aren’t as trivial as it seems. Chris feels like Deena has all the control, and his identity is dependent upon her.Screen Shot 2014-11-05 at 2.07.52 PM 

In group, Dr. Jenn addresses these issues, making the couples tell the other exactly what they need. Each couple hashes through their issues: Jenna and John come to terms with her volatility; Dick and Steph make peace with their past; and Deena and Chris finally get a little interesting. Chris struggles to articulate his own wants and needs, and the rest of the group offers a lot of good advice, which he is uncomfortable hearing. Even though I really want this moment to be about Chris, I’m totally distracted by the fact that Treach just revealed he was married to Pepa of Salt N’ Pepa. Did we know that?

Once the group session ends, Chris feels a little ganged up on by everyone and prickles when it comes to Screen Shot 2014-11-05 at 2.07.39 PMdiscussing his own issues. Deena and Chris argue, but it’s so mild-mannered that it seems anti-climactic compared to all the other couples’ fireworks. Everybody has their own opinions and Jenna, the pot, calls the kettle black when she accuses him of being “a pouty baby.” I am really having a love-hate TV relationship with this lady.

Chris gets some advice from (of all people) Dick and Juan Pablo about his codependency on Deena. Juan Pablo cracks me up, sitting down asking Chris, “How did you feel today?”  like he’s the substitute therapist. They continue with the same themes from the group and Chris grows more and more frustrated talking about his future. Juan Pablo is coming at him pretty hard, but Chris isn’t receiving the advice in the way in which it’s intended, at first. He comes around to it eventually and shows real maturity for a guy as young as he is.

As the second to last episode, the couples are starting to reflect on their experiences. It seems like Dick is upset about his relationship status with Stephanie. Although there are a lot of rumors about Dick’s true intentions on Couples Therapy, I’d like to believe that he is being honest with us (even if he isn’t). Dr. Mike takes him to meet Bob, who also has an HIV-positive status. Dick seeks his advice about dating and relationships and takes away some encouraging tidbits about his future. All of the sudden, it’s “Stephanie who?”

Screen Shot 2014-11-05 at 2.08.05 PMJenna is looking for a little encouragement as well, and Dr. Jenn gives her the whereabouts of her mother’s grave. Dr. Jenn offers to go with Jenna to visit her mother, but Jenna has mixed emotions. She is fearful at first, worried about the pain she will feel at seeing it. Jenna agrees to go, but you can tell she is having a hard time coming to terms with what this will mean for her.

We’ll have to wait until next week to see Jenna visit her mother’s grave, not to mention Juan Pablo present Nikki with a ring—if you believe the previews.

What did you guys think about this week? What are your reactions to Treach’s dad’s turn around? Could you forgive him if he was your dad?

Couples Therapy airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on VH1.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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