I really wanted this whole thing to just be one post. I thought for sure that two would be enough. Alas, that was not the case. So here it is: the conclusion. I refuse to call it Part III. It shall be referred to as Part II Part II.
I apologize for the inconvenience of the extreme length of my Sparly discussion, and for the bandwidth it must take just to load the page.
Jumping right in:
5×04 “iLove You” is, without a doubt, the WORST.EPISODE.EVER.
Of anything ever.
And that is putting my feelings mildly.
I don’t think Seddie is over. They ended the relationship mutually, on really good terms, which is just kind of awful in its own realistic way (give me perfect fairy tale love, won’t you!), but they did leave it on a note of hope for the future. It reminded me a lot of the way the Buffy The Vampire Slayer series finale left off Angel/Buffy. Even though I’m a through-and-through Spike/Buffy shipper I can still see what Joss Whedon did, whether I liked it or not. Actually, it was the same way the Creddie in “iSaved Your Life” ended. That’s a disturbing thought.I just wanted to get that out there, so you don’t think I’m reasoning like an inexperienced TV-watcher who thinks its doomsday when her couple breaks up. The show goes on, which means anything could happen.
I’m very hopeful that maybe the second time around we can really milk it when Freddie and Sam get back together.
And if the show ends without ever touching Seddie again, I’ll be f–king pissed (pardon my language, please), but it’s certainly not going to change the way I feel about Seddie.
This episode is very cleanly divided into two plots: Spencer dating his old babysitter, and then the Seddie plot. In the Seddie plot, Carly points out that it’s weird Freddie and Sam didn’t see each other over the weekend and had separate plans for the next day. She encourages them to try out things the other person likes, but that ends in disaster. In the end, Freddie and Sam decide they don’t really “click” at this time.
Where do I even start?
I would be the first person to say that a successful couple needs to have a certain number of things in common. But Freddie and Sam have been friends for years, and you have to have more in common with a friend than you do with a boyfriend/girlfriend because what you have in common is all you’ve got tying you together. And how about the fact that in “iDate Sam and Freddie” and “iCan’t Take It” Sam and Freddie were basically spending every waking hour together. All of the sudden they’re not? This episode had worse build-up issues than “iOMG”. And Sam and Freddie were perfectly happy until Carly said something.
I’m not blaming Carly’s motives – she was actually trying to make their relationship stronger – but she made Sam and Freddie self-conscious about their relationship when they didn’t need to be. And after “iOMG” and “iLost My Mind” and “iCan’t Take It”, I just don’t understand how we’re supposed to believe this.
Freddie turned down 100,000 dollars from his mother in order to keep dating Sam. He forgave Sam for sabotaging his future by changing his answers on an important application. And the look on his face when they have their make-up kiss – I mean, just, gah, THE LOOK ON HIS FREAKING FACE.
(Also notice Carly pushing them together just like Spencer nudged Carly and Sam together in “iQuit iCarly”.)
I don’t think I can finish this post. I think I need to go egg Dan Schneider’s house.
I don’t trust that man anymore to do right by me. I wish I did. But he’s not on my writers-I-trust list. (It’s a short list, though longer than you might think.)
Chuck and Blair have been an on-again off-again couple now entering their fifth season on Gossip Girl – and through all the rejections, inability to say “I love you” or “I forgive you”, the choosing of other people, the fights, the trading for hotels, the smashing of glasses – through all of that my faith in Chuck and Blair has never wavered. This break-up in “iLove You” was just SO MUCH WORSE than any of the drama Chuck and Blair have been through. Chuck and Blair have been through so much, but the fact that they loved each other more than anyone else was NEVER in doubt. The half-hearted way Sam and Freddie give up on their relationship in “iLove You” is pathetic in comparison.
I don’t care that they said “I love you” to each other. That almost made it worse. No, it did make it worse. It was already indicated twice that Sam loved Freddie, so I’m not sure why I’m supposed to believe it was so meaningful this time. It was clear that they loved each other. I already mentioned all of the obstacles Freddie overcame, just because he hadn’t said the words yet didn’t mean he didn’t love her. And yes, it was a big step. IF THEY WERE STILL IN A RELATIONSHIP!. Saying “I love you” when you break up is an equivalent of “let’s stay friends” as far as I’m concerned. It would be different if there was something else driving them apart – an external force. But this is just two people deciding that dating wasn’t working out. There are a lot of Seddie fans who liked this episode because of the “I love you”, and I’m happy for them that they don’t have the fury in them that I’m feeling, but I think they’re fooling themselves. I don’t blame them. But it’d be nice to hear some rants. I feel like they think they’re taking the mature, high road by trying to appreciate the episode. F–k that. I’m indignant, and I don’t think it’s because I’m being immature about it. I’ll admit, maybe, to being a little impatient, because it is possible that Sam and Freddie will hook up again. But that still doesn’t change this poor-ass break-up.
This isn’t a post about Seddie, so I won’t say much more than that until the end.
The greatness of the Sparly in the episode is also offset – probably into the negative – by the speech Carly gives at the end. I’ll get there soon enough.
Carly, Freddie, and Sam are at school, which has just ended. Carly merrily sends them on their downward spiral, and then Sam heads off to hit golf balls at the girls’ soccer team, Freddie following after. Spencer sneaks up behind Carly and says, “Stay my baby” in a low voice.Hmmm…She tells him to stop doing that voice, because she hates that voice.I looked it up – it’s a reference to a Miranda Cosgrove song. The song is about a summer love that the singer refuses to give up on. Seddie? I’m going to go with yes. “I’m never gonna give you up, I’m never gonna have enough, from now until forever, stay my baby”. That’s the chorus. Works for Sparly too, though not the verses, obviously. (It’s quite catchy, probably my favorite song of hers I’ve ever heard. That’s not saying much. Sorry, Miranda.)
So, Spencer’s first line in the episode to Carly is to call her baby and sing her a line from a love song.
I can roll with that.
Spencer has been on his motorcycle, so he’s wearing a leather jacket over his now-ubiquitous plaid and these dark jeans that fit perfectly, and, to quote Spencer, “Whooooahohohoooooo.”
He looks FINE.
He says he was driving by, and thought she might like a ride home from school.
He was just driving by?
That’s not even a good excuse. Come on, Spencer, we know you just want to ride around with Carly on your hog.
Because brothers usually come to pick up their sisters after school on their motorcycles. That’s how it usually is.
That’s what the sexy older boyfriend does.
It’s practically a movie trope, I bet.
And Spencer has never looked sexier.
Anyway, Carly begins explaining about a stop she needs to make, when Spencer covers her mouth and shushes her. (Wow, you should have seen the way I accidentally first typed that sentence. A Freudian slip to rule them all.) He’s seen a woman in the hallway, and it turns out that she’s his old babysitter, Jenna. She works at the school.
Jenna doesn’t recognize him at first, so he does an impression of his younger self, and she gets it right away. He should not have started things out that way.Now, I usually make quite a bit out of Carly’s “jealousy”. When you’re actually showing that a character on-screen is jealous, there’s a certain way it’s done, and of course they don’t do this with Carly. And Spencer can turn into quite a douche bag when he’s pursuing a girl – him covering up Carly’s mouth and not listening to what she had to say and then ignoring her completely for a few minutes is typical behavior for him in this sort of situation. So Carly’s impatience with his flirting is quite understandable. And we saw Carly try to help Spencer get a girlfriend in “iWin A Date” when she helped him set up his profile, and be supportive to a degree of other relationships.
But even taking all of that into consideration, I still think it’s worth mentioning that we’ve never actually seen Carly be happy watching Spencer interact or talk about one of his new girls. We know what Carly’s “awww, that’s romantic” face looks like because she’s used it practically every time Sam and Freddie kissed in front of her:
Carly is at most amused by Spencer’s pursuit of lady friends, and a glower from her is more standard. Of course, there’s usually additional circumstances. Like when Carly was glaring at Spencer for kissing Sasha Striker – we know that was because he had to work on his sculpture, whatever I like to pretend.
I’m going to bring up Supernatural again, because Dean Winchester is a lot like Spencer in the girl department, and Sam Winchester is a lot like Carly in reacting to that. Wincest (aka the incestuous ship of the brothers Winchester) is, all things considered, rather popular. And I really don’t think we’ve seen Sam act any more “jealous” of Dean picking up girls than Carly ever has of Spencer. He’s usually dealing with life or death situations, so he’s less likely to be amused when Dean wants to “release the Kraken”, but I still think there is something to be gathered from the comparison. I’m just saying that if Wincest fans want to call Sam “jealous”, then me calling Carly “jealous” is not more of a stretch.
I’m taking this moment to go into all that because Carly keeps a polite expression on her face but she really does seem put out during this whole scene. (It’s not really coming across in the pictures.) There’s a hint of dismay when Spencer first spots Jenna, and a dismayed confusion when she asks what’s going on and Spencer reveals that Jenna was his babysitter when he was 10. And then just a general ambivalence for the rest of the conversation.
Spencer, after explaining to Carly, turns back to Jenna and asks her how old she was when she babysat him.
“Yeah you were,” Spencer replies, smiling suggestively.
Spencer confesses to Jenna in a later scene that he had a crush on her when she used to babysit him, so he’s probably remembering back to having a crush on her when she was 15, but INTENTION FAILED: it does not come off that way. It seriously looks like the thought of her being 15 turns him on. This is not me being me, this is something that actually came off TOTALLY WRONG.
Application to Sparly need not be explained.
Jenna says that maybe they should get together for dinner. And he says yes, and then he turns to Carly and says again, “This is Jenna!” excitedly, and Carly replies, “I see Jenna,” totally almost rolling her eyes and just over the whole thing. It reminded me a lot of Spencer saying “everyone looks nice” sharply in “iSpeed Date” when Carly’s date arrives.In the next scene, Spencer and Jenna are on a date at his apartment, and Carly is serving them, because Spencer is playing her 40 dollars to do it. Um, Spencer? Do you take Carly on ALL your dates?Carly is standing right there in the kitchen, but Spencer leans in to tell Jenna the secret that he had a crush on her, although Jenna already knew, because Spencer wrote her love poems, and told her boyfriend he had a “stupid face” when she invited him over.
Carly, while keeping any daggers off her face, is certainly far from jubilant. In fact, when Spencer low-balls the amount of money he was going to pay her, she’s downright sharp, making me think she’s probably not having a very good time. And Spencer’s date is going pretty well. Maybe that’s why? (YES. THAT IS WHY.)
Jenna realizes it’s 11, and says she has to go. She tells Spencer he should go to bed. He says no way, because there is a Boy Meets World marathon on at midnight. He mentioned Full House in the earlier scene. I just thought that was wonderful, because I remember watching both those shows when I was a kid.
Carly says, “You’re not watching that. You need to get some sleep.” Apparently he has a sculpture he needs to work on, and he hasn’t even started it.Spencer rebels a little, but Jenna tells him to go brush his teeth and go to bed, and he acquiesces.
He opens the door to says goodbye to her, and she’s lingering in the doorway waiting to be kissed, and Spencer is leaning in to kiss her, and Carly says, “Uhhhhh”, and then Spencer pulls away from Jenna and looks back at Carly, and Carly has this expression on her face like, I don’t know how to describe it, sort of like an unamused smile, or a smug-parent look.I don’t know. So then Spencer says “Murderer!”, and points behind her, and sneaks a kiss when Carly turns away to look.I may come up with some crazy ideas on here, but I am capable of thinking like a rational person and I know what I’m supposed to be taking away from a scene, but I seriously cannot explain this. Why shouldn’t Spencer kiss his date goodnight? On what grounds does Carly stop him? It’s only 11, and she’s leaving anyway. Seriously. Seriously. I don’t know what’s up here. But I like it. Go for it, Carly. Try to stop him from kissing her if you can.
After Jenna leaves, Spencer turns back to Carly, and she tells him that he’s a man-child. And he tells her that she has a stupid face, the insult reserved for those who serve to keep him and Jenna apart. He has already subconsciously identified Carly as an enemy to his burgeoning relationship.
And I love when I make a reference and then something else comes up that makes that reference 10x better, because Spike, after he first realizes he loves Buffy, the first time when he sees her after his epiphany, he infamously tells her that she has stupid hair.
Spencer starts behaving silly, and she keeps calling him a man-child.
So the next Spencer scene has him and Jenna coming back from a date at Pini’s, the restaurant with the lasagna from “iDate Sam and Freddie”. I guess Spencer decided that Pini’s lasagna made for an excellent date after having an excellent accidental one with Carly while eating some.Gibby asks if they had the cheesecake, and Spencer reveals that Jenna didn’t let him have dessert, and she adds, “Because someone didn’t eat his vegetables.” Carly gets a puzzled and slightly alarmed look on her face immediately.
It’s pretty clear where the plot is going, and it only gets worse and worse. Jenna behaves like a babysitter, and Spencer like an increasingly littler little boy.They all watch a horror movie together, and Jenna decides that the movie is too scary for Spencer.Spencer argues that it’s not, and Jenna turns into a pretty nasty babysitter, ordering him to bed “right now!”.Spencer goes, of course.
And Carly goes. Of course. (After putting up a little resistance.)
So then it’s just Gibby and Jenna. Gibby tells Jenna to turn off the lights and finish the movie with him. Jenna shrugs sort of flirtatiously, turns the lights off, sits down very close to Gibby, and turns the movie back on. Then Gibby says his name, which is sort of a catch phrase with him, in this case as a sort of utterance of triumph and prowess.So, Gibby and Jenna. Like that wasn’t suggestive. I don’t know if Gibby is supposed to be the same age as Carly, Freddie, and Sam, but Noah Munck is 4 years younger than Miranda Cosgrove et al. And let’s not forget that Jenna is five years older than Spencer. They totally played this scene off like Gibby scored with Spencer’s date.
And on the subject of Gibby: Cibby (Carly/Gibby) is not happening. Carly snaps and is impatient with Gibby to an extent that is almost cruel. It’s out of character how poorly she treats him, almost. Much like Spencer/Sam, I don’t feel the need to take Cibby down in defense of Sparly, but I’d might as well point out that the more the plotline pushes Carly and Gibby together, the meaner she is to him. Seddie shippers who want Carly taken need to look elsewhere.
In the next scene in this storyline, Spencer wants to go up and watch the trio do iCarly, but Jenna won’t let him “play” until he’s finished his sculpture.
The next day, Carly is sitting around with Sam and Freddie. Those two are a little down because their forays into each others’ lives didn’t go so well. They’ve brought their troubles to Carly, since she was the one who wanted them to do it in the first place, but Carly tells them that she doesn’t have a boyfriend, so maybe she doesn’t really know what she’s talking about.
Thank you, Carly. This is the loophole that’s going to get us out of your speech.
She craves a biscuit, so she leaves Sam and Freddie and goes to the living room, where Spencer is in footie pajamas, and Jenn is reading him a children’s book about a pudgy monkey and a place called banana land.
Can I just take this moment to say, “Dan Schneider and Jerry Trainor: have you ever met a ten year old?” I may have mentioned that I sort of nanny-ed for boy-girl twins, aged 8, for a little over a year. They wouldn’t have behaved this young. Not even close.Carly rolls her eyes, and then decides to take action. She walks up to them as Jenna is tickling Spencer. “OK, OK,” she says to get their attention. “This needs to stop right now.”“What?” Jenna asks, and this bitch has got attitude. She seemed kinda nice in the first two scenes, but not afterwards. Not at all.
“What’s the problem?” Spencer asks.
“What’s the problem?” Carly returns incredulously. “You’re lying there wearing footsie pajamas while this woman reads you The Adventures of the Pudgy Monkey and you’re asking me, ‘What’s the problem?’”
“Isn’t it past your bedtime?” Jenna asks bitchily.
At this point, Sam and Freddie come down the stairs and begin to listen in.
“You two are not having a normal relationship here,” Carly continues.
“But I like her,” Spencer responds. “And she smells pretty.”
“We’ve known each other forever,” Jenna adds, still smiling from the flattery she felt at Spencer’s defense.
“I know,” Carly replies, “but I think you two are taking this connection you feel and trying to force it into a boyfriend-girlfriend relationship. I mean, doesn’t it feel a little bizarre and unnatural?”
“Yes,” Spencer answers her, while Jenna has a sort of sad smile on her face showing she recognizes the truth in what Carly is saying as well. “I’m creepy,” Jenna then says. (You’ll get no argument from me on that account.)
“Well don’t feel bad,” Carly says, kind as ever. “Just, I don’t know, be friends or something. But stop pretending you can be boyfriend and girlfriend when you both know it’s just weird and wrong.”
Freddie and Sam get sad looks on their faces and depart.
“This is weird and wrong,” Spencer comments.
And Jenna grabs her stuff and makes her way out of the apartment. Spencer stops her, and you think he’s going to say some significant farewell, or something like that, but he just wants to know how the story ends. He wants to know if Pudgy Bear ever makes it to Bananaland. When she doesn’t give him the direct answer he’s looking for – she tells him it’s not about whether he gets there or not, it’s about the journey – he even snaps at her. “DOES HE MAKE IT TO BANANALAND?!!!!” And she tells him yes, a little frightened.
Then after she leaves he mocks her with the that finger motion you use when someone talks too much.First: Seddie. Even though Freddie points out that Carly wasn’t talking about them, they still seem to think that entire conversation summed up their relationship.
WHAT. THE. ACTUAL. F–K?
What in those dozens of lines of dialogue even remotely applied to them except for “We’ve known each other forever.” Seriously, that was the only line that applied. Obviously I’m a little angry and emotional about this whole thing right now, so I may not be thinking 100% clearly or being 100% objective.
Dan Schneider, if you’re going to break up Seddie, at least, I don’t know, DO A BETTER F–KING JOB OF IT. Make it, I don’t know, LOGICAL. How about, for starters, I don’t know, REMEMBERING THE LAST FOUR EPISODES IN THIS ARC?
He did such a good job of putting Freddie and Sam together. I haven’t felt this disappointed in a single person in a very long time.
I’ve seen some say that even though they’re Seddie fans this was a good episode because it made them cry. No, people. That is not proper thinking. You cried because you were sad, and there was some sad music in the background.I cried too: tears of rage. Neither were indications of the goodness of the episode.
I’m not going to rant. You’re not interested. I don’t like having all of those negative feelings in me. So I’m going to leave it there for now.
But first I’ll say: yes, it could have been worse. Even in my foul mood, I can recognize that it could have been much, much, much, much, much, much worse.
Back to Spencer/Carly.
Obviously I can’t walk away (figuratively – no actual walking will be done) from my discussion of this episode without bringing up the fact that Spencer dated his babysitter. A babysitter is far cry from a brother-guardian, and five years is a far cry from 12, but the relationships are analogous.
Spencer dating his ex-babysitter is sort of a door opener (or a widening of a door that was slightly ajar, and so on). In fact, neither he nor she has a single qualm about it, and even Carly doesn’t look truly troubled until it’s obvious that the dynamic between Jenna and Spencer is not a healthy one. The fact that a man is dating his former babysitter is never actually the issue. The issue is the specific dynamic that develops between these two specific people. (This is exactly what I was getting at in Part I when I was talking about superior-subordinate relationships going wrong.)
To bring up another TV show from my childhood: the only episode I remember of Doogie Howser is one where he dates an old babysitter. I can’t think of any other examples right now, but I’m sure they’re legion. I’m trying to think of one where the relationship ends up working out. Not the majority of cases, particularly on sitcoms, and yet there’s one on the edge of my mind that I just can’t quite grasp. Oh, what about Buster and Lucille 2? That’s not exactly supposed to be a “healthy” relationship – it’s a much more complicated situation on a much more, hmm, “permissive” show, but there are times when they seem to love each other very much and make each other happy.
It was also nice to see another relationship of Spencer’s fail. Even better that it was actually Carly who broke them up. She literally told them to be friends. She didn’t even tell them to try and fix their relationship, she just told them to be friends. I’d try to get rid of that bitch too, but you’ve got to let me enjoy this a little bit.
And Jenna leaves and he doesn’t even care. In fact, he’s rude to her as she’s leaving, and he mocks her when she’s gone.
Carly really is the only woman he’ll ever give a damn about. The rest are just dust in the wind.
Uh, Carly’s speech. And Carly’s speech. Oh, and Carly’s speech. I fully support Carly telling Jenna that she’s not Spencer’s babysitter, and telling them that they don’t have a normal relationship. Everything else was preachy.
You know how much I love Carly – she’s possibly my favorite female fictional character ever – quirky, girly, sweet, and polite are my four favorite characteristics in other females and what I aspire to be, and she’s exemplary in all four – but she really overstepped her bounds in this episode, with Freddie and Sam and with Spencer and Jenna. It hurts me to criticize her because in 80 some episodes the only thing she’s really ever done wrong in my eyes is not be concerned enough about people being hurt or in danger (i.e. Spencer crawling out on a ledge, Freddie being knocked unconscious by Spencer’s windmills.) No one wanted to see Seddie stronger or Spencer and Jenna broken up more than I did.
But it is not Carly’s place to tell anyone what their relationship should be like or what constitutes a proper foundation for a boyfriend-girlfriend relationship. I have to be careful, because obviously I do think that a friend or family member should interfere when they see someone in an unhealthy relationship, exploiting or being exploited. And I think Carly has the right to tell anybody what she thinks about anything. I’m a big believer in free speech. And Spencer and Jenna did have an unhealthy dynamic and they did need to break up. But all of the “unnatural” and “wrong” that Carly was bandying about did not earn her points in my eyes, or Dan Schneider either.
I love stories of broken, messed up people finding love with each other, even if it’s messed up, broken love. Mister Foe is a great example. FANTASTIC MOVIE. See it NOW.Or Secretary. Another great example. Another fantastic movie. Another movie you should see right now if you already haven’t. I also love stories of totally messed up relationships somehow working out perfectly.
Atame, great example. Well, I love these types of stories so my brain is full of examples. I’ll stop.
Now, obviously Carly’s “unnatural” and “bad” and “forcing connections” into romantic relationships sort of hit home with the whole shipping incest thing. If I didn’t know this episode had been filmed months ago, I would have sworn Dan Schneider read my Part I and decided something had to be done. Is this just an example of unfortunate wording?
But who is the babysitter in this scenario? Spencer, or Carly? Spencer is obviously the technical guardian and can be authoritative and adultish when the situation calls for it. But Carly is identified with Jenna when she calls Spencer a man-child, and when she tells him he can’t watch the Boy Meets World marathon because he has to sleep, which she says while she’s in the kitchen having cooked dinner and now cleaning it up. But then later she tells Jenna that she’s treating Spencer like a child when he’s a grown man, and the second Jenna leaves the apartment at the end Spencer reverts to his adult self. So that turns everything on its head. It confuses every possible comparison. And that’s why I’m not going to let the possible implications of Carly’s speech and the span and resolution of Spencer’s relationship with Jenna to hurt my Spencer/Carly shipping too much.
In the end, Dan Schneider was not sending me a personal message (I’m sure I’ll have a reputation soon enough as that crazy Sparly girl) – it was just some unfortunate wording and a few coincidences. And since Carly’s speech was also supposed to apply to Freddie/Sam to a degree (don’t start to rant, don’t start to rant, don’t start to rant), it seems a little excessive that it should apply to three relationships in total. Two is sort of the max on that. So my conclusion is: no secret message about Spencer/Carly.I didn’t know it when I first got started, but Nickelodeon was gracious enough to air another episode after Seddietember: 5×05 iQ.
For the episode that followed “iLove You” it was neither perfect, nor a complete disaster. There was no verbal indication that the Seddie arc had ever happened, which seemed remiss to me. Cowardly, even. But there were four things that, I think, sought to balance that out:
1) When Freddie is talking about the rooster and hen his mother bought that would not “make babies”, Sam gets a very uncomfortable look on her face. I know the GIF is small, but if you look closely, you can see Sam look away, and then back at him. This was definitely specific on the part of Jennette and the director. And these little sorts of moments are the only things that are going to make it possible for me to enjoy the break-up. 2) When a “hot” guy (matter of opinion, I thought he wasn’t that attractive) walks into the Groovy Smoothie, Carly comments on it, and Sam also expresses appreciation. Freddie definitely looks put out. Even more than he did in “iHire An Idiot”.
3) Sam never insults Freddie. She insults his mother relentlessly, but she treats Freddie a little differently than she did pre-“iOMG”.
4) Sam is more subdued in general. Again, very different from her pre”iOMG” demeanor.
So, this episode has three plots: 1) T-Bo, the Groovy Smoothie man, needs a place to live. Sam, Freddie, and Gibby make him over so he’ll be acceptable to Mrs. Benson, who then lets a room to him.
(Do you even see that last one? And it’s all about him trying to get inside of it.)
3) Carly dates a smart guy.Carly, Sam, and Freddie are at the smoothie shop when Carly spies Kyle. Apparently she finds him attractive, and Sam agrees. Whatever. Carly goes after him pretty aggressively, though not in a very skilled way. Fortunately, the smart guy, named Kyle, finds her charming. But he’s very smart, and uses a lot of fancy words and references. Carly doesn’t understand most of what he says. But she scores a date with him anyway. Back at the apartment, Spencer is working on the safe. He says he was at the junk yard “bright and early” that morning. Carly points out she finds it more likely he woke at noon. He amends his junk yard hour to 2:30. Wow, that sounds JUST LIKE ME. Spencer and I are a match made in Heaven in so many ways.
Sweet Carly is concerned about T-Bo’s homelessness, and Spencer doesn’t seem inclined to help. He doesn’t seem to have much sympathy for the money Mrs. Benson lost on her chicken gamble either. But Carly nags a little, so Spencer says that Mrs. Benson should rent her extra room out to T-Bo.Everyone is taken-aback by his intelligent solution. I won’t get offended on his behalf, but I will point that he’s had some good ideas before. It’s not like this is the first time. Not even.Spencer points out that he’s not all about goofy antics and spontaneous fires. Sam presses, “But that’s what you’re mostly about.” And he responds, “Well, yeah.” Which is perfect. Spencer has just the right amount of smarts and sanity. The rest is party.
Is it significant that there’s discussion of Spencer actually being “smart” (yes, that word was used) in an episode about Carly dating a smart guy?
Kyle takes Carly to see a Russian film. Carly falls asleep during it.She manages to keep faking it with him, but she knows he thinks she’s smarter than she really is. Of course, it’s not exactly a matter of iQ per se, it’s a question of vocabulary and knowledge. The real problem is that Kyle is an intellectual, not that he’s smarter than her. He’s sophisticated. (See what I did there?) I mean, the events of the episodes are different, but could the premise be any more like “iWon’t Cancel the Show”? Both Spencer and Carly enter into relationships with people they know aren’t good fits for them, people they actively try not to be themselves with. Just like Spencer bought his glasses and jacket and cooked mushroom tartlettes, Carly studies for her dates.
It’s one thing to, I don’t know, pick up someone attractive in a bar and have a one night stand because you’re horny. That’s not what either Spencer or Carly were doing. They were looking for a girlfriend and a boyfriend respectively. But they would never enjoy the companionship of that spouse. Which means that, either consciously or subconsciously, they already knew they had the companionship they needed. With each other, of course. That’s especially the case for Spencer who has Socko and Socko’s family, but not a connection with them equal to the one Carly has with Sam and Freddie. But even Carly goes long periods without seeing her friends. In “iLove You”, when Sam and Freddie reveal to Carly that they never hung out during the weekend, it is also revealed to us that Carly clearly never saw either of them either. Besides Gibby, and the occasional friend she might work on a school project with, Carly doesn’t have anyone else. So she spent the weekend with Spencer. I mean, who else? NO ONE. That’s my point.
Well, Carly brings Kyle back to the apartment, where Spencer is still working on the safe.
Spencer asks who the stud is, and Carly introduces him.
This is probably going too far with diction here, but when has going too far ever stopped me? I just wanted to say that the origin of the term “stud” is a male specimen fit for breeding. So by calling Kyle a “stud”, Spencer is actually objectifying him. It’s like Spencer already knows that Carly’s just dating this guy to have a hot boyfriend and not because she has some sort of connection with him. He’s just a good-looking piece of flesh. I mean, Spencer addresses Carly directly, referring to Kyle as if he weren’t there. It just fits.
Spencer tells Kyle that he has nice hair, pointing to Kyle’s head. Then Spencer points at his own hair. Like he’s saying, “Hey, we both have great hair.” Or “Your hair is cool like mine.” Or “Carly found a guy with hair almost as great as mine.” I’m just saying that Spencer’s gesture creates a hair-based link between the two of them.Kyle points out, in complicated language, that the chainsaw is not strong enough to cut through the metal of the safe.
Kyle rattles off a few more technical terms, and Spencer frowns. I mean, it’s obvious enough that he doesn’t understand what Kyle is saying, but he’s also got this look on his face like, “what a pretentious douche bag.” It’s important to note that while Freddie and Sam also spoke with Kyle, and also failed to understand the words coming out of Kyle’s mouth, neither of them got negative about it. And Kyle’s a nice guy, but he sort of is a pretentious douche bag. Even if he was the most gorgeous man ever, I still don’t understand why Carly would want to spend a single minute with him.
Spencer says he can “take a hint”. He doesn’t put up much of a fight about quitting the living room, but he certainly doesn’t act happy to leave. But before he goes he adds that he can also “take this banana”. And he grabs a half-eaten banana that was sitting on the counter. He waves it in their faces and gives Kyle a smug look.?
It’s possible Spencer simply expects Kyle to be jealous of his fruit, but the fact that he wants Kyle to be jealous of him at all (and that much is clear from his words/expression) is interesting.
Apparently Kyle can’t take a hint, because the second Spencer disappears into his bedroom, Kyle makes a move to leave. Maybe he’s not so smart. Carly invites him to stay, but when he wants to talk about the social and political ramifications of the movie they saw, Carly panics and runs to Spencer for help.
(It was really hard to pick what screencaps to use for this part because Spencer, once again, looks amazing. My crush on season 5 Spencer is getting out of hand. I just want him and his chainsaw here right now.)He doesn’t know what the problem is. As he points out resentfully, he left just liked she asked.
Carly says, “Yes, but now I need Kyle to leave.”
“WHAT DID HE DO?” fierce, protective big-bro Spencer demands.Carly explains that she isn’t prepared to talk with Kyle, so she needs an excuse to send him away.She asks Spencer to give himself a nosebleed with a 2×4.Who does she think he is? Gibby!
(Of course, I’m sure he could have found some red paint in his room or something. I mean, help Carly out, but FAKE IT!)Carly gets Kyle out of the apartment. Then runs upstairs to study for her next date.
This is sort of karmic justice for Spencer, who as I mentioned, can treat Carly pretty poorly when he’s on the prowl. But remember when I said that I loved the writers for not sacrificing Spencer and Carly’s relationship for humor as often as they could have? Apparently that’s a downward trend.
Carly studies up for her next date, and tapes a cheat sheet to the bottom of her plate, and writes on her arms, and keeps her smart phone close, so that she can keep up with the conversation. She has to kick Spencer out of the room again so she can have her date.
Kyle catches Carly looking at the bottom of her plate. He says he leaves, not because she isn’t as smart as he thought, but because she was dishonest. I’m glad the relationship ended, of course, but he was a little hard on her. She’s the one better off without him, though.
Carly is much more upset about losing Kyle than we ever see Spencer being when his pursuits inevitably fail. But she’s laughing by the end of the episode. Sam’s pretty sweet, trying to cheer her up. Sam had her own little storyline episode – a love affair with an epic fork. I guess she’s trying to replace Freddie with flatware.Spencer turns to dynamite in the end to get his safe open, courtesy of Socko’s cousin Boomer.I’m a little surprised Carly let him do this. She’s nothing like Jenna the creepy former babysitter.There’s another safe inside. I have to admit: I liked that. This was not a brilliant episode in any way. The scenes between Carly and Kyle weren’t very funny and the comedy in the T-Bo one was easily purchased. But I liked this.
What else do I want to append?
I’m working on a fanfic. I’m pulling out all the stops on this one, using pretty much every idea I have because I don’t know if I’ll ever write another one. Notification of it’s completion will be forthcoming. If I find a few other fics, I may do a recommendation page. If you have a Spencer/Carly fic request, I’m open. I won’t promise that I’ll write it because you can’t force inspiration, but if the prompt gives me some ideas I would love to serve you in that capacity.
I’m also taking Sparly GIF requests, and if there’s a particular scene of the show you’d like to see, make the request and I’ll put it up on youtube for you. Just drop it in the comments. Also, if you ship Spencer/Carly, please please please just comment saying so. You don’t have to say anything else. It can be anonymous, I don’t really care. I just want to hear about a few other shippers. I want to bring us out of the woodwork. I’ve already heard from one other, and I’ve seen enough on the internet to indicate that at least one other person sees some romantic chemistry between Spencer and Carly, and considers some of the scenes to be a little on the suggestive side. That’s not shipping, exactly, but it’s certainly a vindication of what I’ve written.And I’ve been listening to music during the days and days I’ve been working on this project, and I want to leave you with two songs that just stuck with me. I’m not saying all the lyrics apply – they don’t – but the choruses are appropriate and they just GOT TO ME at the right time, and that’s why I’m forcing them on you. They’re good songs, either way.
Don’t Look Back, by Telepopmusik, for Seddie
And December, by Nikki and Rich, for Spencer/Carly. I leave things there.
For now. Mwahahahahaha.