Fuller House Recap: Rules, Lemons, and Boundaries

Fuller House

The Not-So-Great Escape
Season 1 Episode 4
Editor’s Rating *****
Candace Cameron Bure as D.J., Michael Campion as Jackson. Photo: Netflix

I don’t care what D.J. Fuller says, Kimmy Gibbler is the best mother on the planet. What better way to react to her daughter getting suspended than giving her what she wants and then taking her on a spa day? Every time I’ve been mugged — and there have been several times —  my mother sends me presents. That’s kind of the same thing, right? Totally.

Especially because Jackson and Ramona’s school is some sort of bizarre gulag where everyone is forced to make papier-mâché volcanoes for a science experiment. Seriously, though, why are there security guards roaming the halls of the school? Is this some sort of post-Columbine thing that I have no idea about, because the only times I’ve been inside a public school since the Clinton years is to vote? (There’s a giant Tyler Perry poster on the wall next to the cafeteria, which always creeps me out.)

If I were Ramona, I would want to break out of there, too, just to stick it to the man. But what was this plan that she and Jackson concocted? He was going to break Ramona out of their prison-compound and then she was going to go to her old school and break into that building so she could hang out with her friends? How was she even going to get there? I guess San Francisco’s public transportation system is really good (I learned that on Rice-A-Roni commercials), but even that seems dumb. If she missed her old friends and has a bus pass, why doesn’t she just WhatsApp her friends and tell them to meet her at the mall after school? That way, she doesn’t have to commit two separate crimes and still gets to see her friends.

Nobody thinks this plan through. Spencer is going to set off the sprinklers and Ramona is just going to climb out the window? What, is this awful fortress of a school also in a basement or something? What kind of school has windows you can crawl out of? One with a giant truancy problem, that’s the one. It’s like having a skyscraper whose windows open at all, or a doggie door that only operates in one direction.

Once they get home, Spencer is punished and it is not for saying, “I’ve been up all night erupting my own volcano,” which is something that no 13-year-old boy should say in public ever. It’s for getting them both in trouble. D.J. not only sentences him to a bunch of chores, including syncing her iPhone to her iPad because, seriously, what mom in America doesn’t have her children do this for her? Well, except for Madonna; that’s why she keeps those 19-year-old boyfriends around.

D.J. ruins the fun for Ramona by insisting that Kimmy punish her daughter just as D.J. punished Spencer. That is seriously messed up. If there are two things that you should never do, it’s telling someone how to parent or how to kiss. Both will just end up blowing up in your face and will probably end with slaps, lawsuits, and a whole bowl of mussels in butter sauce on your head. Yes, I know this from experience. Like some sort of home-school supervisor, D.J. forces Kimmy to punish her daughter and Ramona does not fight back by going upstairs, turning 1D on full blast for 17 hours and not talking to anyone ever again like a real teen would. No, she is just like, “I get it. Cool.” Please, Ramona, kick and scream a bit for the rest of us.

Now we have to talk about D.J. Fuller’s Pet Spa and Cuddle Center, which is the absolute worst vet office in the whole entire world. First of all, she doesn’t even know that her unnamed partner is treating a guy with a pet pig. And not just any guy, but a guy with the kind of muscles that you want soaked in butter sauce and poured over your head. He also has a face that looks like it was sculpted into the same masculine mug that adorned all the He-Man toys in the ‘80s. He has maybe one line, and he is the hottest guy we’ve seen on the series so far. Then he just disappears and we never see him again.

Speaking of disappearing, that doctor, the secretary, and D.J. all disappear, leaving Stephanie Tanner with a room full of pet patients waiting to be seen. This is sort like opening up a brothel without anyone on duty to satisfy the clients. They all just sit there in a chintzy room, waiting for something to happen, but no. And what was up with that woman who brought in what she thought was a cat, but was actually a skunk? Has this human adult never seen a Looney Tunes episode of Pepé Le Pew in her entire life?

Now that I think about it, this was an entire episode of disappearing hunks. What sort of alternative universe do these women live in where all the unmarried men in San Francisco aren’t pimple-faced coders with more stock options than social skills or gay dudes trying to find their way to the closest leather festival? Next, D.J. meets her partner’s son, who is going to be working there without D.J.’s knowledge. His name is Matt and I want him to drive me and the kids to soccer practice every Saturday and buy me surprise skim lattes with half a pump of hazelnut because he knows they’re my favorite. Then we’ll lie in bed (we gave the kids back to their original owner) and just watch old sitcoms on Netflix while I lie on his lightly haired chest and say, amusedly, “No, you don’t have a dad bod, you’re just perfect.” However, our meeting was fleeting, like houses fullered in the night. We’re introduced to Matt and then he just … disappears. I would assume he would be back in future episodes, but expecting Fuller House to have a serialized structure is sort of like expecting Denny’s to have craft cocktails.

Stephanie, who is taking care of baby Tommy, meets a hunky guy named Darrin at the coffee shop. Alright, this guy is a complete unicorn. Not only is he impossibly dreamy with nice round arms and a pretty face, but he is also turned on to the point of distraction by single mothers. Say what? This does not exist outside of the wish-fulfillment section of MILF Island, a chat room for sexy moms to write slash fiction in private. (And yes, they stole the name from 30 Rock.) What’s even crazier is that Darrin asks Stephanie to dinner alone so that she’ll ditch her kids. Shouldn’t this man want to sit around the house and watch them all play with their new puppy named Comet and help dole out punishments to Kimmy Gibbler’s little band of criminals? Ah, who cares. As long as Stephanie is getting some of that hot piece, at least someone in that house will be happy.

Fuller House Recap: Rules, Lemons, Boundaries