Monday, October 13, 2014

Review: Out With Dad 3.16: Stressing Out

This week I look at episode 3.16 of Out With Dad, my favorite webseries if which I’ve discussed here in depth a lot in previous posts. “Stressing Out” involves mostly Rose’s school. This episode hits me rather hard because I am a teacher in real life, though I work in a public school that is not subject to some of the prejudices as Rose’s school environment.  Granted, some of the views in this story do crop up in all schools, but not in the particular area where I work.

The episode begins with a conversation between Rose and her dad.  He knows something is bothering her and tries to figure out what.  Rise attempts to skirt the issues, but reveals a bit too much in the process.  The first thing Rose talks about is the dance tickets Claire tried to buy for them.  Rose insists things between her and Claire are fine, though the attempt to buy the tickets does bring up a thought to me.  Rose and Claire make such a nice couple, in part, because of how the complement each other.  Claire is more vocal and out, while Rose is quiet and shy.  However, this has caused some friction already, and could signal trouble in the long term.  It depends on how much Rose can come out of her shell.

Anyway, Nathan wants desperately to help Rose, but she doesn’t want to be the center of attention at school, so she’d rather put up with the discrimination hoping people will eventually forget about it.  At school, we find Rose is afraid to enter the changing room before gym, and would rather be late for class than face the homophobia of Brittney.

Then Nathan gets THE PHONE CALL.  The gym teacher is calling concerning parents not wanting their daughters changing in front of Rose.  The teacher’s idiotic solution is for her to use the staff change room.  Nathan is understandably incensed.  The solution hits me this way: in order to have equal access to the education of heterosexuals, it is necessary to have homosexuals separated.  You know, because separate but equal works so well. Nathan demands action, but wants to keep things from Rose.  Certainly so as not to upset her and so that she won’t be getting the extra attention she doesn’t want.

The final scene includes the wonderful return of Alicia.  Okay, she hasn’t really been gone, but she hasn’t done much this season…so far.  But I like the interaction between her and Rose.  Rose had mentioned in a video diary that she thought Alicia was a bit stuck up and kept Rose from spending time with Kenny.  At first, Rose seems rather cold towards Alicia here, but when Alicia asks about Vanessa and offers to put up posters about her, Rose sees to thaw. Then, when Claire arrives and the Fall Formal comes up in conversation, Alicia offers to boycott as a sign of solidarity.  Finally, Alicia asks about PFLAG.  She really is quite a sweet girl, that Alicia.

By the way, Rose tries to get Claire to go to the dance without her, but Claire will have none of it.  Kenny is all for skipping the dance also.  These people really care about Rose, but I don’t think she’s reacting well. In fact, Alicia, Kenny, Claire, and Nathan all seem to have the right ideas throughout the episode. Rose, however, has not responded to her difficulties well.  Ignoring a problem and hoping it will go away, plus refusing the help of others?  Not very good, Rose.  I know it may be hard to be in the spotlight, but I think you have to do better.  Would you want the next girl to come out to be treated like you have been?

Finally, the episode ends with Claire giving Alicia her MOST ADORABLE LOOK YET!  I love this show!

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