TV Review: The Fosters 3×14 “Under Water”

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A new episode of The Fosters brings even more emotion than the last! The episode begins with Callie seeking out AJ in juvie. She is disheartened to find out that he does not want to see her. Callie attributes this to Stef and the way she abused Callie’s trust when going after AJ. After many attempts it is clear that AJ does not want to see neither Callie nor Mike. Callie then visits his brother Ty and knows that if he talks to AJ, he can convince him to accept the love and support of the Foster family. AJ has gained a family; let’s hope he can see how much they truly care.

Stef prepares for the impending surgery and it is clear that she is overwhelmed with all of the issues it brings up. Stef tells her mother that she wants her to have her power of attorney without consulting Lena, which Lena later finds out second hand, prompting Sharon to wonder if they are having problems in their marriage.

Meanwhile Lena deals with a school rumor going around saying that she is having an affair with Monte. After she discusses the issue with Monte, Lena again breaks down in front of her and over shares about her anxieties and worries; something that Stef sees as she arrives at the school. Stef’s continued lack of trust in Lena stems from her fear of losing her. She fears the consequences the surgery will have on her body and her relationship. Something that Lena dismisses instantly, reminding Stef that what she loves is so much more than her physical being. The heart and complexity with which this show addresses the hardships of marriage is done with so much honesty.

In this episode we also get to see how Jesus interacts with his birth father. Although I would’ve have liked to see the relationship develop more organically before coming to an abrupt stop, I thought the insistent curiosity Jesus conveyed was very well done. Jesus later asks Mariana about wanting to know about their birth father, something she never thought he would care much about. The next day Jesus tells Gabriel the truth about being his son, his reaction seems fearful. This is later explained, to some extent, when Mariana researches Gabriel and finds out that he has a felony background. The show has sparked the fans’ curiosity, and it will be interesting to know more about Gabriel in the rest of the season.

We also get to see Brandon bond more with his co-worker Courtney. The mutual attraction is evident but Courtney knows that Brandon has not gotten over his love for Callie. When he asks her for a chance, Brandon finds out that Courtney has a son, complicating any relationship that has started to form between the two. Brandon’s relationships have always been complicated, to say the least, so it will be interesting to see how things will progress with Courtney.

Callie and Justina, her investor, continue to work on her website Fost and Found. Some tension arises as they disagree over the amount of censorship Justina wants to impose. Callie feels that her site should be a place where foster kids should be allowed the space to express themselves freely. Callie also figures out that her catfish is Jude’s new friend Jack. After he convinces her not to tell Jude about his actions, the siblings see bruises on him and realize he is being abused in his group home. They offer to help but his fear portrays the situations of many foster kids who live powerlessly in a flawed system.

Mariana’s tensions with Matt during their rehearsals for the “Romeo and Juliet” play are evident. It appears that working together will be more difficult than they thought. Nick’s new found interest in Mariana does not seem like a good path for her to explore. Nick seems like he will cause more trouble rather than any good for Mariana. I don’t know where that relationship is going, but it will definitely lead to some strife.

Finally, the tear jerking moment of the episode was when the moms sat down with their kids to tell them about Stef’s cancer and surgery. The unfortunate reality is that bad things like this bring people together, and this seems to have done so. The family hug at the end expressed the love between the family and how they have always grown closer through difficult experiences.

Melissa is a 22-year-old English major at Florida International University in Miami. She has been passionate about storytelling for as long as she can remember. She loves literature, film, and television; any great story that can make her cry really. Her dreams include working in film or publishing in order to get great stories told. She is an unashamed and unapologetic fangirl of way too many fictional characters and is still waiting for her Hogwarts acceptance letter to arrive in the mail.