Younger Recap: Being Jane Austen

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Younger. Photo: TVLand
Younger

Younger

The Gelato and the Pube Season 4 Episode 8
Editor's Rating 3 stars

In the span of just 30 minutes, Liza’s love triangle has gotten incredibly complicated. So much so that by the end of the episode, she’s got herself wondering if she’s a regular ol’ Jane Austen: assisting in the forging of true romance and love for others, but doomed to be a spinster. How does our gal go from two eligible, kind, handsome suitors to (maybe) zero? Mainly, it’s because she’s just too nice. Damn you and your levelheaded maturity, Liza!

Take her situation with Charles, for instance. The crew at Empirical (plus Lauren, of course) have read Pauline’s thinly veiled tell-all about her marriage and the reviews — of both the writing and Charles’s secret sexual prowess — are good. Apparently, page 58 is … enlightening. Two things are for sure: This could be the big best-selling hit the company needs, and it could also be highly embarrassing for our fearless leader. Diana advises Charles to publish, that way he looks like the bigger person and can control the information getting out. There are already other publishers interested, so one way or another, this book is going to be released. Charles is still leaning toward serving Pauline with a cease and desist. Liza offers a compromise: Why not go and talk to Pauline before getting lawyers involved? She’ll even babysit while he has dinner with his ex.

See what I mean about maturity? DISGUSTING.

Maybe Liza has nothing to worry about. Before Charles leaves, he asks for a fake emergency text in an hour to get him out of this meeting. He also goes on and on about how angry he was when Pauline left him and how meeting Liza changed all that and Liza makes him feel like himself and he’s so grateful for her and blah blah blah, WE GET IT, DUDE. You’re amazing and swoony and we all just want to drink coffee with you out on a back porch while you comment on how lovely the rose bushes are looking this summer.

But when Liza (who, honestly, is the world’s best babysitter) sends the fake emergency text after an hour, Charles isn’t ready to go home. He keeps extending his time with Pauline, and when he finally does return, Liza is fast asleep. He has few words for her and puts her in a car like some common, well, babysitter.

Thankfully, Charles, true to character, apologizes for being so curt the next day. He explains that when things get emotional, he shuts down. Liza already knows that: Not because she read it in Marriage Vacation, but because she knows Charles.

How are these two not making out right now?

Charles has important news, though nothing is more important than making out: It will be difficult to publish Pauline’s book, but he believes it will strike a chord with readers. He wants to go for it and Pauline has requested Liza to edit it for Millennial. Again, Liza just can’t say no. It’s a huge opportunity for her, she resonates with the material (even though she can’t really explain why to Charles, no matter how much she wishes she could), and she can help control how Charles comes off in the novel.

As Maggie so eloquently puts it to Liza at dinner, she’s got a “gelato and the pube” situation going on. In other words, she’s receiving something that is otherwise delicious except for that one, little pube sitting on top. It’s not the most appetizing of analogies, but it does apply. Plus, Maggie is on a high at the moment from teaching her new farm-to-table neighbors a lesson by pretending to cook one of their chickens and then calling the health department after they stick Mags and Liza with a $500 bill at their restaurant. Maggie is the best friend every girl needs, so her little gelato-and-pube speech should be taken to heart.

Liza and Pauline have lunch and a heart-to-heart. You can see immediately that the two women relate intensely to one another. Pauline explains that she had to leave because she was getting swallowed up in her marriage, and she didn’t want to set that example for her two daughters. And, by the by, if a man went off for a year to work on a book, there’d be little to no outrage. Liza knows all about giving up a career for her marriage, so this story hits so close to home (to Liza and a whole slew of other women, I suspect).

Then Pauline drops the bomb: Just because she had to leave doesn’t mean she isn’t still madly in love with Charles. Pauline hopes this book will help them reconcile. Or as Liza later puts it, the novel is basically Eat, Pray, Win Your Husband Back. Liza doesn’t hesitate in telling Charles how Pauline feels, but it’s less of a “ratting her out” thing and more of a “maybe we should reevaluate our situation” thing. Liza isn’t upset; she’s just being practical. Charles goes on to assure her that the book is fiction, and he is all in on Liza.

I don’t know, Charles. You can be as swoony as you want, but this whole situation is only going to get more complicated as time goes on. Liza’s job as an editor is to do right by her writer. This seems like a major conflict of interest.

And what about the other man in her life? Liza and Maggie run into Josh and Kelsey at a bar, trying to set each other up with a random (it’s Tinder IRL). Both are failing miserably, but all is not lost for Josh. Liza starts chatting him up to the cute Irish bartender named Claire — who wouldn’t be moved by learning that the stud with the tattoos spends his birthday baking dog treats and bringing them to the pound? — and introduces the two. Josh and Claire end up talking until morning. It is all very sweet and Claire legitimately seems like a Normal. Josh can’t help but thank Liza for putting this into motion.

And that, ladies and gents, is how one noble woman is faced with the fact that she may be helping not one, but two of her men find meaningful relationships with women who are very much not her. So yes, our Liza Miller is turning out to be a regular ol’ Jane Austen.

It’s Trout Season

• It’s always entertaining to see buttoned-up Diana get a little unraveled. This week, Richard’s college-aged son Nathan has put a “pause” on school and Richard sees no problem inviting him to crash at Diana’s for awhile. At first glance, the kid is lazy, disrespectful, and entitled. This should be fun!

Younger is never one to hold back on giving its audience gifts, and “The Gelato and the Pube” is no different. Today’s treat: Watching Diana Trout learn what a Fleshlight is, while holding one she just pulled from her couch cushions. Her only response to Richard defending his son’s expression of his sexuality: “You’re buying me a new couch.”

• How did Miriam Shor and Sutton Foster get through the line, “He masturbates into a rubber vagina on my linen sofa. It’s adorable,” with straight faces? Their talent knows no bounds.

• As if I couldn’t love her any more, Diana’s Wi-Fi password is Middlemarch. No space, you fool!

Younger Recap: Being Jane Austen