“Selective Virtues” gives us so many wonderful moments that it’s hard to know where to begin! I’m kidding, I want to start with Steven getting absolutely eviscerated because he’s the worst. Even with Ari acting as the season’s One True Villain, Steven has easily made a reputation for himself as one of 90 Day’s worst guys. He lies to Alina and gaslights her, and he’s a hypocrite. Alina is a sweet, naïve girl, and while it’s clear she’s uncomfortable with Steven’s actions, she doesn’t have the nerve to confront him.
Enter Alina’s blessing of a mother, who is not afraid to call Steven out at all. Steven really thought he could use chocolate and Russian to win this woman over, and she was just like, “So you can have sex, but my daughter can’t drink coffee?” It felt so good to see his hypocrisy called out! Steven was shocked that Alina had told her mother the truth. Steven exists in the fantasies he creates with his lies, and I don’t think he’s used to people who just deal with reality. At this point, I don’t think these two will actually get married, so I hope the rest of their relationship is just Alina’s mom making Steven feel ridiculous and bad.
This episode is all about necessary conversations. Ellie finally confronts Victor about his affair and gets no closure or answers. She tells him what she’s concerned about, and Victor just sort of grins and denies everything. Ellie wants to move on, but Victor can’t even comfort her by saying this will never happen again. I’m pretty sure it’s going to happen again.
Ari has a conversation she needs to have; she just doesn’t have it with her husband, Bini. Instead, Ari’s family tries to get her to wake up. Ari talks about how New Jersey doesn’t feel like home because she doesn’t have an apartment or job there, but she doesn’t say anything about its not being home because Bini isn’t there. It’s so obvious she doesn’t view Bini as her home or family. On top of that, Ari suddenly remembers she has a huge insecurity issue when it comes to being long distance with Bini. Oops, she apparently didn’t think about that when she bought a plane ticket that would separate them for over a month!
The second Bini misses a phone call, Ari will use that to spiral and become accusatory. We saw that last season when he was working at the club and she’d go through his phone. I really don’t think Bini would cheat because he doesn’t want to lose his family, but he is immature enough to be passive-aggressive about the situation. I can see Bini ignoring Ari’s calls or responding slowly to texts because he’s upset, but Ari will read the worst into that. That could be a big problem since they weren’t on stable ground before she flew across the world.
Kenny and Armando have the most difficult conversation this week when they finally confront their family’s future. Armando wants to have another baby using IVF. Kenny wants to make Armando happy, but he has his concerns. While I can normally assess who’s right and wrong in a 90 Day argument, this one is tough. Kenny’s reasons for wanting to adopt an HIV+ child are honorable. While I still think the best way he can be a father to any of these kids is by actually learning Spanish, I think he’s right to stick to his guns here. Armando is only concerned because of the stigma and how his family would react. Kenny is right: That’s their problem.
But Armando is also right: His family has had to deal with a lot, and culturally, they view adoption differently. It’s not that Armando isn’t willing to adopt; I think he’s just tired of everything with his family being so complicated and heavy. His daughter’s mother died, he came out of the closet, he’s dating Kenny, he’s getting married. Nothing in Armando’s life has been easy, and I think he wants this, his first child with his husband, to be on less complicated terms. He’s tired of explaining himself. He doesn’t want to wait four years and fill out paperwork. I don’t think this disagreement will split these two up, but I hate when Kenny and Armando are fighting!
The Other Way is at its best when it gives us insight into honest cultural differences like Kenny and Armando’s. There’s no villain (like Ari or Steven) and no hero. Even though it’s felt like Sumit is the villain in his story with Jenny, the producers have done a great job of pushing their story into this sweet spot. At this point, if Jenny doesn’t realize that Sumit doesn’t want to marry her because she’s not a perfect Indian wife, that’s on her! Jenny was shocked that her friend wasn’t on her side and said Jenny should take this opportunity to prove herself to Sumit’s family. Sumit wants to respect Indian traditions in his family, and he wants a housewife. Jenny wants to remind everyone she is still an American and live her life like it’s golden. These two have realized they want to live very different lives, but they’re still talking around it.
90 Day Notes
• Avi is such a cute baby. His momma is evil, but he’s cute!
• If Ari hangs out with Leandro while she’s in America, I will scream.
• Alina’s family is not going to convert. Let’s watch this relationship implode.
• Hannah looks like a model in her little pink jumpsuit in the title card with her dads. Kenny and Armando should focus more on getting her a contract and less on another kid, honestly.
• Jenny, that kitchen was disgusting. Come on, girl! Even Sumit was like, “You missed a spot.” She’s about to see he is on his parents’ side, and she is not going to like it.
• Evelin and Corey will probably get a divorce. Corey says he won’t sign the papers. I don’t care.