Too lazy to do a cute introduction and you guys don't care about that anyway so onto the (in)action!
Cameran starts off this episode by taking the role of Patricia in imparting life lessons: “This is America, everybody wants something for nothing these days.” Accurate.
We see Cameran pouring chicken broth into a crock pot (+1), looking very freaked out (-1). Her domesticity is at a net of 0. There's always next time.
Shep meets Craig at some restaurant in the middle of the afternoon and orders a cocktail, as per uge. Use? Uje? The first syllable of "usual." You guys know what I mean.
Shep invites Craig to his family’s house in the Appalachian mountains, which I am now learning are near South Carolina. Oops. Maybe I can’t criticize these people for being dumb.
Craig is like, “Are you inviting Kathryn?” and Shep is like, “IDK, Whitney and Cam don’t want me to and are pulling some middle school manipulation BS.”
Craig: Whitney claims he only thing she’s done to him is screw over his best friend.
Thus sets the stage for Craig spending the entire episode meddling in Kathryn and Whitney's past for no solid reason that I can ascertain. Is Craig's life really that boring? Maybe JD should give him the bourbon division so he has stuff to do other than stir the pot. Anyway.
Craig, the voice of reason, is like, “Just invite Kathryn bc she’s pregnant AF and can’t come anyway but at least she’ll feel good” and Shep is like, “tru.” Can’t see any way this plan might go awry. Luckily he calls Kathryn on the spot and she’s on modified bed rest and can’t come. Oh, thank God. Shep and Craig act bummed but are really like:
Genius, Craig. These people are smarter than me this episode, damn. Time to reevaluate my choices.
Thomas comes to Kathryn’s house and is acting like a good dad, IDK, I can’t really criticize him here. Kathryn asks Thomas if he’s going to Shep's and he shoots himself in the foot by being like, “Well I said if you weren't going I’m not going” and instead of being like “aww how sweet” like a normal person she’s like “Why?” and Thomas is like, fuck me because he basically has to spell it out for Kathryn how much Landon and Whitney hate her. This is what happens when you try to be nice.
Cameran goes to her therapist’s office, and this has got to be breaking all kinds of HIPPA violations. Also, this is too much for me, I don’t need to watch y’all’s therapy.
Cameran’s in therapy because she’s not sure if she wants to have a kid or not and feels like she’s just not maternal. I feel you Cam, I mean, you were on The Real World so….
Look, I’ll be honest, I just don’t want to rehash Cameran’s control issues and anxiety. Blah blah middle school blah blah parents' divorce…am I dead yet?
The therapist is like, “so I really want to go back to your childhood”—classic therapist move.
Jess (you remember, my friend?): Cameran is acting like she was born in the 1940’s South and her mom was a real mover and shaker for having a job…She’s like five years older than us. My mom had me in her thirties and worked and it wasn’t a huge deal.
Anywho, Shep is calling his mom while filling us in on his house in the woods. His family owns a vacation house, I get it, I didn't really need a family history lesson but I'm kind of glad I got it anyway.
Shep: My grandparents own this cabin in the mountains but it’s not winterized so my mom told my dad she’d divorce him unless he built her a house.
Kind of upset Shep’s mom didn’t end that phone call with “Y’all be good now, y’hear?” We were so close!
Some blonde girl, I’m guessing from context Landon’s sister, is at Landon’s house and asking her how the meeting went and Landon says it went really well. Did we watch the same meeting? There must have been another secret meeting later that wasn’t a total trainwreck.
Landon’s sister is like, “Oh so do you have to have the website ready?" And Landon is like, "No I don't have to build the website or anything, he just wants to see a prototype." She wants Vox media to run the website and she just gives them the content, and it’s becoming very clear that she does not know what “prototype” means.
Landon and her sister talk mad shit about Kathryn and she’s like, “I’m not saying she’s a failure and a slut but…*giggle*”
Landon: Well she has one skill…she’s pretty good on her back…
Literal depiction of this situation:
Landon, your shit-talking was admittedly very funny, but do you not realize that you just called a person who we've all acknowledged is vindictive and emotionally unstable a whorebag on national television? I'm worried for your safety. We probably need to get you into Witness Protection to be safe.
Anyway, Craig is at said back worker’s house and Craig says for once in her life Kathryn’s not causing the drama. Craig is already complaining he and Naomie don't have enough room in their house. Again, did we see the same house? Is there a parallel universe somewhere, where Craig's house is tiny and Landon nailed her meeting with Vox?
Craig came over for the sole purpose of fucking starting shit, you little weasel, and tries to play dumb like, "Whitney said he wouldn't come to the mountains if you were there so I’m wondering, really I'm just spitballing here, I really have no inkling at all, but like what happened with you guys?”
And Kathryn says after she and Thomas hooked up she got close to Whitney and was spending time at his house AND WITH HIS MOM, staying in Whitney’s room.
Cut back to Whitney saying he REALLY LIKES KATHRYN AND SHE HAS AN AMAZING FAMILY. Wow okay. The tides have certainly turned since then.
Craig: Hm...again just totally throwing out ideas here, but I feel like maybe Whitney had feelings for you if he was willing to let you move shit into his house.
HMMM YA THINK?
Basic backstory: Kathryn was bat-shit crazy even back then (/especially back then) and showed up to a pool party with Whitney JUST to make Thomas jealous and then left with Thomas. That’s fucked up, yo. Then, Kathryn shows up to something called “Carolina Day” that sounds Southern AF with Thomas. Whitney made it clear that he didn’t want Thomas to know anything about the extent of their relationship.
Note to the commenter who commented with this exact story a while back: You were right. Props. If any of you can find me the full streaming of seasons 1 and 2, I'll watch it so you can all stop bugging me.
Kathryn: Whitney was basically a way to feed my ego because I was butt-hurt about Thomas.
Oooh, NOW I get why his entire family hates you…
Craig: Told ya! Everyone thinks I’m crazy but, CALLED IT! LAWYERED! One day I’ll be a good lawyer.
Yes Craig, you just lawyered us all except….if Whitney and Patricia and everyone really ARE justified in hating Kathryn, like you just proved, why do you still think it’s the right thing to invite her everywhere?
After the commercial break Cameran is calling her imaginary husband to say bye before the trip. How come he’s never invited to anything, huh? Screw Kathryn, let’s invite what’s-his-name!
Craig and Naomie severely overpack, to the surprise of no one. Craomie, betchiest couple in more ways than one.
Shep: I feel like we should stop in Asheville so everyone can get their urban desires out of the way.
Is that like, a race thing?
We also learn that Shep is Bailey’s almost boyfriend. Ughhhhh.
Shep: If I’m involved with a girl she’s gonna have to know that I’m gonna disappear for a few days and she’s just gonna have to be cool with it.
There we have it, ladies and...ladies. In case you had any doubt that Shep is a complete fuckboy, here is indisputable proof, taken right out of the fuckboy handbook.
Meanwhile, Craig thinks they’re in Nashville and Shep is like, “I mean it’s understandable he thinks we’re in a totally different state, I mean, he IS running a bourbon company…” I can't lie, that was a good one.
They arrive at the hotel, where Whitney got a room with a mountain view and Shep didn’t.
Whitney: Shep has no hotel game. I do.
Okay, not everything has a “game.” "Hotel game" is not a thing. That's just calling ahead.
Thomas shows up and he and Whitney share the most fake hug ever. Lololol.
Thomas: Let’s get busy! *Continues to be your drunk uncle* Meanwhile, Landon is and forever will be your drunk aunt. Forget Shep, Landon should really be with Thomas. It’s destiny! Let's get these two together!
Thomas asks some random teenagers on the street if they have tramp stamps or are into the grunge movement. Thomas, grunge died in 1999. You’re a dad, not a grandpa. Get it together, homie.
Cue the world’s most boring game of giant Jenga.
Thomas and Whitney are bonding over their hatred of bluegrass, which tbh I didn’t see coming at all. Guess you can't judge a book by its very Southern-looking cover.
Thomas is pulling out a Jenga piece *cue pulling out jokes from everyone, because we all know Thomas walked right into that one with his weak-ass pullout game*
John Pomeroy, proclaimed “awesome character” and furnisher of Shep’s fake ID, shows up. Cool, unless he hooks up with one of the girls I don’t really care.
They all show up wasted to a classy French restaurant next door.
Shep: Thomas can you order this? It’s french! Hahahaha
OK, Shep is a fuckboy but he’s got the jokes.
Cameran asks John what type of girl he thinks Shep is going to end up with and he’s like, “Girl? You mean GirlSSSS?” Like, you guys are just enabling his fuckery at this point. Have a conscience. Stop letting Shep get away with acting like a frat boy who’s discovered sex for the first time and maybe he'll grow up a little.
Cam’s like, "I have this theory that Landon hearts Shep." MOVE THE FUCK OVER, SHERLOCK HOLMES. CAMERA IS ABOUT TO PUT YOUR ASS OUT OF BUSINESS. I’ve only been saying that for, what, three solid weeks now? Back it up. There's only room for one detective up in here.
At the restaurant somebody brings up the Kathryn thing and idk who did it bc I was on the phone with my sister but OMG, can we go five minutes without talking about Kathryn? Leave the poor girl alone, she hasn't even done anything this episode!
Craig: Whitney’s totally irrational when it comes to Kathryn. His buddy’s trying to be a responsible adult and he’s still bashing her.
Craig, here's an idea: stop fucking bringing it up!
I’m just now noticing that Landon is uncharacteristically silent on this trip. Odd.
Thomas finds the weirdest looking girl in the bar—half shaved head, pink hair, facial piercings—and hits on her. Kathryn, you picked a good one. What can I say.
Shep: My trip is going perfectly. There’s no drama, everyone is having a good time.
Uh oh, Shep. I have a feeling you may have spoken too soon.
Thomas is dancing with a heavily tatted girl. I feel like I now know what kind of porn Thomas watches and I did NOT want to know that.
Rando girl: You don’t want to get cut, do you? By my pocket knife.
WHOAAAAAA what the fuck? This dude hasn’t even bought you a drink yet and you’re already volunteering your cutting fetish? Are you a real person?
In the morning, Thomas realizes that Landon is two-faced AF when it comes to Kathryn. Last night apparently Thomas pulled her aside and Landon drunkenly confessed to not inviting Kathryn to Shep's party.
Thomas tells Shep about Landon’s shadiness. Landon, you just ruined your chances with Shep. Sorry girl. I feel kind of bad for you, Landon, but you played yourself fam.
Cameran’s having heart palpitations, what else is new.
Thomas leaves, just when things were getting good and dramatic. Damn it Bravo, why do you keep doing this to me??
Linville, where Shep grew up, has one stop light. Ah, now I get why Shep’s friends beat up the kids who rollerskated—because there was nothing else to do.
Shep: Everyone in my family was either a lawyer or a judge or IDK some other prestigious shit.
Damn, Shep’s family’s house is NICE AF.
Either Landon or Naomie is like, “Wow this place is gorgeous. I love all the wood.” What did you think you were going to find in a CABIN in THE WOODS? Jesus fucking christ. My intelligence has redeemed itself. Thank you.
Craig: Not gonna lie…I love mooching off my wealthy friends.
Same, Craig. Same.
Cameran: You have the all-American family. Everyone is happy, no one’s divorced.
Cam is so cute, thinking those two are the same thing.
Craig and JD sit down for the most uncomfortable talk ever.
JD: I want to help you lead, but I need someone that’s gonna help us.
Subtext: That's not you.
JD basically wants Craig to convince Danni to join JD’s business and take the job Craig wanted. JD, way harsh. Craig is still licking his wounds, have some damn compassion.
Back in SC, Jennifer goes to visit Kathryn who is basically under house arrest. Reason #249332 I’m never getting pregnant.
Someone told Kathryn that Landon admitted to blatantly not inviting her to Shep’s party, even though I thought we were all actively trying not to stress her out?
Kathryn: I know Jennifer thinks Thomas is an asshole, but I really need his help.
Craig is cooking dinner for everyone, instructing them on how long to cook everything and okayyyyy I’m more attracted to him than I’d like to admit because he sounds like he’s got everything figured out. Craig's like, "Yeah you just marinade this steak for 10 minutes and slap it on the grill for 20, look at me being a manly man who knows how to grill a steak."
Jess: If you grill a steak for 20 minutes you will get ashes.
Aaaaaand there goes the attraction. But ok I can’t lie I have a soft spot for those dimples tho. IDK, my relationship with Craig is complicated.
Meanwhileeee Shep confronts Landon about her not inviting Kathryn and Landon’s sticking to her original lies until Shep is like, “Thomas told me you didn’t invite her” and she’s like “Oh shit. Fuck. Okay,” and finally fesses up.
Whitney and Shep can’t figure out how to use a wine key properly. This feels like the beginning of a joke. How many Southern frat boys does it take to unscrew a cork screw?
Okay, 20 minutes on the grill or not, that steak looks good.
ONCE AGAIN we are fighting over Kathryn. For people who hate her so much you guys bring her up A LOT.
Whitney calls her a psychopathic insane woman and Craig’s like, “Dude you’re just mad because she fucked your best friend the week after she stayed at your place” and jaws are dropping everywhere. CLEARLY this was not public information and Craig has let the cat out of the bag in a major way. OH SHIT, HERE WE FUCKING GO.
Aaaaaaand that’s the end of the episode. FUCK YOU BRAVO.