The season finale of The Fosters was such a gorgeous tribute to the show. There was closure, a glimpse of the future, and the comforting feeling that life goes on. It was such a fitting end for this series, it almost makes these final three episodes feel a bit unnecessary. Don’t get me wrong: I wish there could be episodes of The Fosters until the end of time. But since our comfort blanket is being ripped out of our arms anyway, we should at least feel good about how it goes out. Still, I can’t fault the cast and crew for celebrating the end of an era by heading down to Turks and Caicos (the location of Brandon and Eliza’s destination wedding). And so here we are, with a three-part final hurrah to the Adams Fosters. I miss them already.
This first episode spends most of its time recalibrating the audience as to where everyone is after the time jump (Jude just finished his freshman year at UCLA, if you need a timeline confirmation) and setting up the final two episodes.
At the top of “Meet the Fosters,” the Adams Foster clan, complete with new foster son Corey, is celebrating all the accomplishments of their children, while also welcoming Eliza’s family — her v. traditional parents, Jim and Diane, and v. eligible brothers, Jamie and Carter — to the family. Seriously, they spend about five minutes just clapping for things that run the gamut from Callie finishing law school to Jesus getting his contractor’s license to Corey … existing. You get a clap! You get a clap! Everybody gets a clap!
Of course, the major life achievement everyone is gathered to celebrate is Brandon and Eliza’s wedding in t-minus one week. From the looks of it, it will be a gloriously awkward affair. Is there such a thing as politely insulting? If so, that’s exactly what Eliza’s parents are. They spend most of the evening making tone-deaf remarks about how “interesting” Stef and Lena’s family is and comparing raising foster kids to taking in stray dogs. As much as it is enjoyable to watch Lena and Stef play the good cop/seething-on-the-inside cop game they’ve mastered through the years, this time Lena should’ve let Stef fly off the handle. Yes, you want to keep the peace for Brandon, but they are insulting Stef and Lena to their faces in their own home.
Alas, our Mamas grin and bear it while Jim and Diane explain their family wedding tradition of members of the opposite sex from each family being paired up for a dance — Lena and Stef will have to trade off with Jim otherwise it would get too awkward, you know. But what almost sets Stef off is when she and Lena discover that instead of his moms officiating the wedding like Brandon asked (aw, B!), Jim and Diane are insisting a minister do the job. Do Jim and Diane know what they are depriving us of? Laughing through tears, that’s what.
As if Lena and Stef have time to deal with Jim and Diane’s ignorance. Lena is now both principal of Anchor Beach and on the school board, and Stef is running a nonprofit child-welfare agency and shelter for homeless families. The ladies have been busy furthering their careers and fostering Corey, who, after a year, they are looking to adopt. There’s sure to be some drama on this front, but for now we can all bask in the glow of that tearful group hug the Mamas and Corey share when he learns his birth mother might be back in the picture. Are these hugs the thing I will miss the most about this show? It’s possible.
Needless to say, Jim and Diane are on everyone’s shit list even before Jim pulls Brandon aside to give him a prenup. It needs to be signed before the wedding. Ugh, Jim, this gorgeous house deserves better than to have someone like you inside its walls.
Will Brandon and Eliza make it down the aisle? I hope so. Eliza seems fine and Brandon has never looked happier. We get a look back at how they met and it is cute enough. Is it alarming that Brandon unloads all of his Grace baggage on their first date? Sure. But it works for them. They seem very much in love.
If the daddy-wants-a-prenup situation doesn’t drive a wedge between B and Eliza, Callie might. Eliza overhears Callie and Mariana talking about how weird it will be for Callie to watch her first love get married this week. As open as Brandon was about losing Grace, it seems as though he did not make one mention of that whole dramatic love affair with his adopted sister. Eliza might have some follow-up questions.
You guys, if The Fosters really spends its final three episodes revisiting the Brallie of it all, I might throw my TV out a window. Can we not move on from this? Yes, they were very much “in love,” but they are siblings now and it would be best to keep it that way. It doesn’t seem like Callie is bringing Brandon to her L.A.-based spinoff Good Trouble anyway, so it will probably not amount to much.
Still, she has thoughts on Brandon’s life choices. Honestly, she has thoughts on everyone’s life choices. It’s wonderful that Callie, now a graduate from UCSD’s five-year law program and interviewing for clerkships with judges, has found her calling. She is strong and resilient and it’s hard not to be proud of how far Callie has come, fictional character or not. Still, does she have to be so freaking self-righteous about everything? Like, we get it, Cal, you have a sleek haircut and wear high-collar blouses and hold glasses of wine like they’re goblets, you’re such an adult. But also, you’re 23 years old and you’ve made a lot of questionable choices in your life. So sarcastically telling Mariana that she’s “real classy” or confiding in Aaron (hi, Aaron!) that you thought Brandon would end up with someone “more mature” is absolutely ridiculous.
Even more infuriating is how Callie treats Jamie, Eliza’s older brother. He’s a corporate lawyer, so obviously he is Callie’s mortal enemy. She immediately cuts him down for his line of work, even though she knows nothing about what he does. When he starts defending himself, she calls him out for mansplaining after she literally asked him to explain what he meant by a certain comment. Jamie seems sweet and charming and he’s played by Beau Mirchoff, who was also very sweet and charming on the underrated Awkward. Give Jamie a chance!
Jamie doesn’t seem to give up easily and continues to be sweet and charming even as Callie is outwardly rude. Lucky for Callie, because as good pal Aaron tells her, the girl needs a hookup.
Okay, who’s ready for Turks and Caicos?
In Other Family News
• The Fosters has gone all in with this treehouse-building thing: Jesus and Wyatt are starting “Out on a Limb,” a custom treehouse-building company. I wish them the best in this endeavor.
• We’re led to believe Emma might be pregnant and keeping it from Jesus again … which would make absolutely no sense, so you know it must be something else from the get-go. Mariana spills: Emma was offered an amazing job in India. Jesus knows she’ll regret not taking it, but he’s done waiting for her. What a sad, mature person Jesus has become. Well, mature until he spirals out of control from heartbreak in Turks and Caicos, which feels inevitable.
• Mariana, recent graduate of MIT, announces to the dinner table that Mat joined a band, returned from tour, and promptly gave her crabs. They’re over. Both Mat and Wyatt are at the dinner party, so old high-school jealousies flare up. Honestly, Mariana is way too good for this and should just go backpacking through Europe alone.
• The twins are fighting again! It’s true Mariana is a meddler, but does Jesus have to be so mean about it? I need a big ol’ twin heart-to-heart before those whole thing is over.
• There’s major Judicorn drama brewing: He’s on academic probation at UCLA and has not informed his moms, he is hitting the rum hard at the party, he is flirting with Eliza’s brother Carter who seems to be very in the closet and grappling with his sexual identity, and Callie finds a bottle of PrEP pills in his pocket. Okay, that last thing seems smart and safe, but you just know Callie is going to make a big thing out of it.
• Whoa, whoa, whoa, Lena: What is this talk of selling the house? After all the time we spent saving it? All the tears we’ve shed in that backyard?
• “I accepted her friend request on Facebook and I am very generous with my likes.” I need this line embroidered on a pillow, because it is perfect.