Saturday, June 15, 2024

Home and all its Vices: Vida’s Second Episode Is Amazing, Basically

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Welcome back to Vida, probably the best new show/the best show currently airing with potential to be a pop culture turning point that will be written about forever, I’m not sure.

Last week, Emma was on the brink of doing whatever she could to sell her mother’s and Eddy’s building/bar; Lyn was chasing her safe high school flame; Eddy was simultaneously being the sweetest human in the earth while also grieving hard for her wife; Mari was mad as hell about gentrification; and there was a ghost girl taunting (haunting?) Emma. This week, there’s still some of that stuff going on, but we don’t see the ghost girl.

This week, we open again with Mari on her bike on a beautiful morning, earbuds in, determination on her face. She cycles through a quiet neighborhood of large houses straight to the front of a hipster art gallery where she drops her bike, shakes a spray can, and paints “Fuck White Art” across the exterior. A skinny bearded white dude comes out  to confront her but seems scared of her anger as she yells at him that no one wants the gentrifiers/colonizers there and to get out of her neighborhood.

Speaks for itself.

She bikes away and stops in front of a big house where two Latino men are working on building a fence. She starts filming herself for her vlog, the workers in the background, and uses them as an example of how gentrification is making life a lot harder for the people in the neighborhood because they’re forced to work these jobs that are helping to displace them. Just then, a classmate of hers, Tlaloc, joins her in her rant. He tells her he’s subscribed to her vlog, and she films him as he articulates everything she wants to say about what’s happening to the neighborhood. Her hardness evaporated, Mari is clearly smitten. I smell a romantic storyline.

Speaking of romantic, Lyn’s boyfriend Jupiter is decidedly not that. He wants his truck back, so Lyn meets him at whatever hotel he’s staying at; she gives him oral-anal sex, then he breaks up with her. Luckily for us, we have some Strong Female Characters on our hands. Lyn is (obviously) pissed and minces no words in telling Jupiter what an asshole he is. Unfortunately, Lyn decides the best way to deal with her pain is to go running past Johnny’s garage in her sports bra, ask to use the bathroom and seduce him into sex again.

At first he stands up for himself, telling her to leave him alone; he doesn’t want to be in reserve for her. She’s broken his heart too many times, and now he’s engaged and about to be a father and happier than he’s ever been. It’s actually a very poignant moment and one of the few times in my life I’ve felt a lot of empathy for a male character in this situation. He was assertive and clear. So, I was kind of surprised when Mari (who we find out is Johnny’s sister) comes looking for him to help get their father to dialysis only to see him in coitus with Lyn. Uh oh.

After the sex, Lyn and Johnny are both emotionally destroyed. Lyn’s strong-woman, in-control facade melts into her crying with the realization that her mother is really gone.

Meanwhile, Emma is still being extremely cold and mean to everyone, most of all Eddy. Eddy continues to be the beating heart of the show, and yes I will die on that hill. She tries to get through to the girls by making them a huge gourmet breakfast, vegan for Lyn. Emma, however, is not about to be suckered into Eddy’s endless goodwill and charm, I guess. Lyn feels a little more warmly toward Eddy, so out of guilt she tries a bite. To her surprise and Eddy’s adorable grin, the food is delicious.

This is Sad Eddy, and also Stand Up For Herself Eddy. I love all the Eddys.

No matter, Emma has an agenda. An agenda to sell the building without Eddy’s input. So Eddy gently reminds her that actually, she owns a third of the place, and she will never agree to sell. Emma threatens to take Eddy to court and stomps off to meet Nelson, the shady developer who approached her at her mother’s funeral. He’s the one who is behind a lot of the gentrification that’s happening.

Nelson tells Emma in the most teeth-grindingly patronizing way possible that Vida had two mortgages and that he could *maybe* offer her enough for the building to cover her payments on them with nothing left over. Then he tells her that his group gave her a loan for 110% of what the building was worth in order to “help” her with the mortgage she already had and the building upgrades. Emma looks him straight in the face and says, “You gave my mother a predatory loan,” and dumps hot coffee on his crotch. It’s amazing, and it’s my second-favorite moment of the episode.

My third favorite moment is when Cruz gives Emma a pastry at their old hangout and they make love eyes at each other and Emma thanks her for “the sweet thing.” MELT. Please let these two have a sex scene that rivals Lyn’s straight sex scenes.

Please, I pray to you Tanya Saracho, come through on the sweet thing.

My first favorite moment happens at the end of the episode, when Emma and Lyn come home to Eddy digging into one of the giant flans left over from the funeral. “It’s got to get eaten,” she says. Emma grabs a fork and sits down next to Eddy, taking a bite. Lyn sits too and looks dejectedly at the flan. “Flan has, like, milk in it and stuff, right?”

Eddy nods. “Y eggs,” she says. (For those who don’t know Spanish, ‘y’ means ‘and.’)

Lyn’s face shifts and she says, “Fuck it,” grabbing her own fork and taking a bite. As her face breaks into a smile, she says, “It’s impossible to be vegan around here anyway.”

This bonding moment between Eddy and the girls is my favorite thing and makes my heart so happy. I’m already so invested in these characters and can’t wait to keep going on this journey with them.

Meanwhile, Vida smiles over them *heart explodes*

That’s it for this week! Here’s to more great storytelling next week!

Images Courtesy of Starz

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