You know the difference between watching a show because it’s somewhat entertaining and then writing some words about it, even though you’re not exactly brimming with words and absolutely loving something, being eager to watch the next episode and having an overabundance of words, to the point where you’re trying to control yourself. That’s the difference between me before and me as I watch Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist 1×07 “Zoey’s Extraordinary Confession.”
Talk about a switch being flipped.
I still found the family parts of this episode to be dragging a little bit – though with a clearer head I will admit that’s probably partly because as someone who has lost her father, the whole dad dying storyline is just too much for me to emotionally engage with – and I’m not exactly sure I care about Zoey’s coworkers outside of Max, but the music was as fun as it ever was, aaaaaand did I mention my list of people I do care about has gotten longer?
And ….yes, Zoey.
Simon, however, has dropped on my list. More by perspective than anything he’s really done. I still like the guy, and I appreciate his willingness to be open about grief, a grief I understand all too well. But in paying attention to the whole I’ve sorta come to realize how little Zoey and Simon actually know each other. They’ve only bonded over grief, really, and though that’s super easy to do with someone who more or less understands, that doesn’t mean there’s a lasting connection there.
Not unless they want it to be.
These 4 characters, however, are more than enough for me to finally, actively care about this show. Just consider this: yesterday, I googled to see if there was any fanfic, and I might have watched a fanvid or two.
So, let’s talk about why I’m suddenly invested as we discuss “Zoey’s Extraordinary Confession”
HONESTY GOES A LONG WAY
As much as I absolutely adored the last episode, especially the song at the end, the way to get my attention, to totally get me to stay and invest was to do exactly what Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist did: deal with the issues raised right away, and in an honest, realistic way.
Sure, I wouldn’t have said anything if we spent a few episodes with Max wondering if he should tell Zoey how he really feels, but considering that this is a 12-episode season, and that we, as viewers, have known since the first episode, it also feels like this might be the right moment for Max to come clean about his feelings, and for Zoey to come clear about his power.
Investing in OTPs is hard in today’s TV landscape. So often showrunners throw contrived and frankly dumb obstacles the way of the couple they’re trying to get us to love. Often, they even make the characters they’ve established act OOC for the sake of adding drama. And though we’ve sorta come to the point where we, as a collective, have decided to wave those writing blunders away, lest they ruin characterization, it’s good to know that this show won’t require me to.
Because yes, Max coming clean makes sense. And yes, Zoey should have explained to him earlier. And yes, Mo’s advice is always on freaking point and we should all have a friend like Mo in our lives, willing to tell us the hard truths, no matter what.
And the truth is this: Zoey will be better for having confessed, and so will Max. Their relationship will have to change, and it might be hard to adapt, but they will come out of this stronger for having trusted each other. This is a delay, yes, but not the kind that hurts. We, after all, didn’t expect our OTP to get together in episode seven. No, we know the writers have to tease us a bit, make us really, really want it, before they deliver.
We’re good with honesty as a roadblock, though. We truly are.
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THE GOOD KIND OF ANGST
I’m not a fan of angst, I’m not. Maybe it’s’ because I grew up watching The X-Files, and that was just sustained pain for too long. But I don’t mind this type of angst, I really don’t. And it’s not only because, as I said, it feels real, or because honesty is the best foundation for any relationship, it’s also because boy, imagine the songs. THE SONGS.
All kidding aside, the conversation between Max and Zoey at the end cemented by they are the OTP of this show, the guiding light the show is heading towards. Max is very sure of his feelings, and yet, as hard as it is, as much as he might need some time to adjust, I think he understands that Zoey just can’t put herself out there, not right now.
Zoey, meanwhile, was finally honest about her feelings for Max. It’s not that she doesn’t care, it’s that she cares too much to risk him now. That seems like such a silly, tropey, TV thing, but the reasoning behind it is solid, not just because the show has established a background that makes these feelings valid, but because they’ve also set up Zoey as the kind of person who would feel like this.
And yet there was so much love, so much light, so much genuine affection and chemistry in that conversation, that I can’t help but feel like these two crazy kids will be okay. Not just romantically, but friendship-wise. They will get through this, and they will continue to go on this journey, together. I know Max still wants to be the man who will walk 500 miles to be by Zoey’s side, and Zoey, well, I know she has finally realized that whatever the road is, she doesn’t want to walk it without Max.
That’s a hell of a start. Now where’s my fanfic?
Agree? Disagree? What did you think of “Zoey’s Extraordinary Confession”? Share with us in the comments below!
Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist airs Sundays at 9/8c on NBC.