Recap: David is in the hospital's maternity ward, narrating as he films a homemade documentary about his new baby sister, Erin. His filming/narrating gets interrupted when a nurse suddenly blocks his shot with her caboose. Kelly, who's standing beside David in front of the nursery's large window, urges him to quit filming now that visiting hours are over. She assures him that he'll have plenty of opportunities to film gorgeous little Erin as she pees, poops, and upchucks her way through infancy.
The Walsh house. Papa Walsh is in the midst of ranting to his wife about how ungrateful, deceitful, and irrational Brenda is...then adds that she's a “manipulative little girl who's spoiled rotten to the core”. It is soo refreshing to finally hear some accurate descriptors of Brenda's objectionable personality, particularly from a member of her own family. Papa Walsh blames himself for spoiling her, and rants about her disrespect for authority and out-of-control behavior. Mama Walsh is not in agreement, however, and insists that Brenda is in perfect control, and has been ever since Papa Walsh decided to go to war with Dylan. She then criticizes her husband for the obnoxious way he's been stomping around, since it's done fuck all to bring their family together again. Her advice is for the two of them to sit tight and hold out for another day or two and see what happens...and if nothing good comes out of doing nothing, Mama Walsh will be open to wringing Brenda's neck.
Dylan's house. Overnight, Brenda has turned into Holly Homemaker and is busily vacuuming Dylan's living room. Dylan, however, looks less than thrilled by the noise she's making, and he tells her that he'd prefer it if she ran the vacuum cleaner after he leaves. She then turns it off and starts grilling him about where he's going, so he mumbles, “The beach.” She inquires when he'll be back, if she should fix him dinner, and if he would like breakfast served to him now. Annoyed by all the questions, he sullenly tells her that he's not hungry. His sharp tone causes Brenda's face to fall, so he swiftly apologizes for his grumpy mood and assures her that he loves her. He chastely kisses her forehead, and she perks right up again and orders him to pick up some laundry detergent, along with something for dinner. He gives her a wary glance as he heads out the door.
Beverly Hills Beach Club. After the obligatory footage of shapely babes in bikinis, Steve spots a cute girl who's having problems setting up her lounge chair. He approaches her as though he's planning to help her out, but all he does is smarmily suggest that she move to a better spot on the beach. Not coincidentally, this “better spot” is exactly where he's sitting. When she introduces herself as Rory, he rejoins with, “Yes you are.” Gross.
Donna, Kelly, and David are sitting together at a beach club table. Donna sadly whines that the burger she's currently eating will be her last before she leaves for France. She then starts moaning and bitching about all the packing she has to do. I really wish Donna would either cancel her trip or shut up about it, because her constant yammering about spending a summer in Paris - an opportunity that any less privileged teenager would kill for - is seriously grating on my nerves. When David tells her that studying in Paris for six weeks is a “tres cool concept”, she tells him how much she's going to miss him...and the two kiss while Kelly looks on, clearly nauseated. Kelly suddenly spots Mama Walsh, who comes over to their table and congratulates her and David on the birth of their half-sister. She then asks if any of them have seen Brandon.
Brandon has been summoned to help a girl who accidentally locked herself out of her cabana. Hey! She looks exactly like the girl Steve was just coming on to. After she and Brandon exchange flirty banter, Brandon rushes over to where Steve is loafing and reports on the babe he just landed. Steve congratulates him and informs him that he too landed a babe, and that he's going out with her that evening. When the two suspect that they're talking about the same girl, Steve is crestfallen. He spots Rory and points her out to Brandon, and Brandon confirms that she was, in fact, the girl he flirted with. Steve then starts grousing about how he won't compete with Brandon because Brandon always wins out when it comes to the chicks. And just as all hope is lost for Steve possibly getting his wick dipped, Rory walks by and gives him a little wave and tells him that she'll see him in a few hours. Steve is momentarily confused until he realizes that the girls he and Brandon flirted with are twins. Once again, all is well in Steve's shallow, meaningless existence.
Mama Walsh locates Brandon and tells him that Papa Walsh refuses to come to the beach club until the impasse with Brenda can be resolved. She deftly recruits Brandon to go over to Dylan's house to spy on his sister so that he can report back to her and Papa Walsh. Brandon is reluctant to put himself in the middle of Brenda's obnoxious drama, but Mama Walsh tells him that at some point soon something's got to give.
Kelly's house. Kelly is on the phone with Donna, who's in a stupid state of panic about packing. Jackie, meanwhile, is in the room nursing Erin. When Kelly gets off the phone, she remarks to Jackie with a note of surprise in her voice that she's being very maternal. When Erin finishes feeding, Jackie hands her over to Kelly...and she stares down lovingly at her baby sister.
Dylan's house. Brenda and Dylan are seated at the dining table, and she's staring daggers at him as he scarfs down his burrito dinner. She complains that the burritos he bought for their dinner are disgusting, and then bitches at him for forgetting to pick up laundry detergent. Just as they're getting wound up for an even bigger fight, the doorbell rings. It's Brandon, on his spy mission. Brenda and Dylan do a bad job of pretending that they're getting along great, and Brandon easily picks up on how unhappy with each other they are. Dylan abruptly announces he's going to the store and takes off, and when Brandon asks Brenda how she's doing, she fibs and tells him that things couldn't be better.
The Walsh house. During the debriefing, Brandon tells his parents that while Brenda is putting up a brave front, it's unmistakable that she and Dylan are getting on each others' nerves. And since Dylan has been sleeping by himself on the couch the last few nights, it's unlikely that he and Brenda have been knockin' boots. This news causes Papa Walsh to immediately perk up, and he breathes an audible sigh of relief.
Kelly's house. It's the middle of the night, and Jackie goes into the nursery to check on Erin. She's surprised to find Kelly in the rocking chair with the baby in her arms. Kelly refers to her new sister as “the miracle of life” and tells her mom that she doesn't want to miss any part of it...so she's made the decision not to go to Paris for the summer. She would much rather rather stay home and bond with little Erin. And also hook up with Dylan...but we'll get into that soon enough.
Dylan's house. Kelly and Donna drop by to visit Brenda. When Brenda greets them with “Bonjour, travellers” Donna starts fake weeping. She's newly freaked out because Kelly has bailed on the trip, which means that she now has to go to Paris alone. She wails about spending the entire summer by herself and not being able to speak French. Brenda tries to buoy her spirits by telling her that she'll make friends, and that she'll learn French in the immersion program, which, incidentally, is the whole purpose of the trip. Donna begs Brenda to come to Paris with her, but fortunately Brenda possesses just enough self-awareness to realize that her recent cunty behavior toward her parents would most likely preclude them from paying for such a trip. Kelly points out that if Brenda went to Paris, she'd have to leave Dylan, and then babbles about what a beautiful statement Brenda and Dylan are making by temporarily shacking up together. Brenda concurs with this line of bullcack and tells her friends that living at Slouchy's house for the past few days has been fantastic.
Beach. Dylan whines to Brandon that Brenda is driving him crazy, but Brandon isn't interested in listening to complaints about his sister. He advises Dylan to send Brenda packing, but Dylan refuses to do that because of a major principle. However, when Brandon presses him to articulate what this major principle is, Dylan just stares blankly into space.
The Walsh house. Brenda drops by the house to let Mama Walsh know that she's OK, and happy to be with Dylan out in the open. She tells her mom she's never been happier, but immediately back-pedals and remarks that living with him isn't always easy. That said, she has no desire to return to Casa Walsh and live under the tyranny of Papa Walsh's rules. Mama Walsh abruptly changes the subject and tells Brenda that she has some French language cassettes that she'd like her to pass along to Kelly and Donna. Brenda informs her that Kelly has pulled out of the trip, so just Donna will be going. Mama Walsh suddenly gets a contemplative look on her face and I'm sure we can guess the ill-fated idea that's hatching inside her head.
Beverly Hills Beach Club. Steve has a stupid proposition for Brandon regarding the twins they're dating. He's willing to go out with Rory that evening, but wants to pull “the old switcheroo” the next evening so he can attempt to doink Claire, the other twin. His reasoning is that if one of the twins turns out to be a dud, neither he nor Brandon will have to suffer multiple bad dates. Unfortunately for the twins, however, this plan guarantees that both of them will suffer the indignity of spending an evening with Steve. Brandon looks thoughtful, as though he's actually considering this insulting plan. Later that evening, Rory has an allergic reaction to some squid she ate, and Steve is annoyed by having to spend any amount of time dealing with a sick person.
The Walsh house. Papa Walsh is shocked to learn that Brenda was at the house that day. He tells Mama Walsh that she should have seized her and locked her up in their non-existent basement so she wouldn't have been able to return to Dylan's house. An exasperated Mama Walsh explains that she's been thinking about the best way to make things right again with their prickly daughter, then sternly tells her idiot husband to shut the fuck up so she can tell him her idea.
Dylan's house. Brenda is slumped on the couch when Dylan arrives home. He notices her grim expression and asks if he was supposed to pick up dinner. Then suddenly he's all cavalier and jokes, “Who cares, right?” Brenda isn't amused, tells him she cares, but right now she just wants him to hold her. He goes over to the couch and hugs her, and tells her that they're going to have to stop pretending that they're married, otherwise they'll have to get a pretend divorce. Brenda informs him that she went to her house earlier, then non-sequiturs that maybe her family would have been better off if they'd stayed in Minnesota. But then she thought about him and that if they were in Minnesota, they never would have met. The two kiss, and get very amorous with each other. Blech.
Beach. It's date night #1 and Rory is still looking green around the gills. When Steve tries to convince her that she's well enough to doink, she tells him that she's suffering from a sudden sinus attack...most likely brought on by her disgust at the prospect of lying beneath Steve. He finally gives up on the idea of getting laid that night and looks frustrated.
Dylan's house. Dylan has received a summons to appear in Papa Walsh's office the following day. He immediately assumes that Papa Walsh is going after his money, and Brenda just stares back at him in stunned silence.
Beverly Hills Beach Club. Steve tells Brandon that he's ready to pull the switcheroo on the twins. Brandon doesn't really want to swap girls, so he tells Steve that if he wants to go out with Claire, he should just ask her out. Furthermore, as a twin himself, Brandon finds the switcheroo idea revolting and demeaning. Plus it's a really lame storyline.
Steve joins Donna and David at a table. Donna is still griping about traveling to France by herself. She now wants David to go with her, but he'll be busy with summer school. He explains that he's going to try to graduate the same year as the rest of the gang so that he can remain a relevant cast member when everyone goes off to university in Season 4. But in order to make that happen, he's going to need to take on a full course load for the next couple of months...so no Paris for him.
Dylan's house. Brenda's on the phone with Kelly, who's playing with baby Erin. She tells Brenda that she's so in love with Erin, and that Brenda has to meet her, blah blah blah. I'm sure Erin's very cute and all, but I'm of the opinion that babies almost always ruin TV shows (Family Ties, Mad About You, Murphy Brown, The Office...need I go on?). As soon as Brenda gets off the phone, Dylan enters the room. He's about to leave for Papa Walsh's office to see what the summons is all about. Brenda wishes him luck and tells him she hopes that all will go well.
Papa Walsh's office. In his typical passive aggressive fashion, Papa Walsh informs Dylan that it's come to the attention of the trust that he is currently cohabitating with a minor. He cannot accept conduct that puts the integrity of the estate at risk, because technically Dylan is committing statutory rape. Papa Walsh is therefore left with no choice but to impound all of the assets of the trust until he (Dylan) ceases all activity that is not in the best interest of the trust. I'm no lawyer or financial planning expert, but this all sounds pretty manufactured and bullshitty. Dylan responds by whining about how Brenda suddenly showed up on his doorstep with her suitcases, and rhetorically asks Papa Walsh what he was supposed to do. He then remarks that his house isn't all that big. Papa Walsh stares at him smugly for a few seconds, then tells Dylan that Brenda is going to be offered the chance to study in Paris this summer. He'd appreciate it if Dylan didn't stand in the way of this fabulous opportunity; perhaps he could even help convince Brenda that it would be a good idea for her to go. If Dylan is agreeable to these conditions, then all of the ridiculously contrived problems associated with the trust would magically disappear. Dylan looks contemplative.
Beverly Hills Beach Club. Brandon tells Steve that he's not really into the idea of a switcheroo with the girl twins. Unfortunately for him, it's too late to get out of it, since Rory and Claire are already heading their way. Steve greets Claire and sends Rory over to Brandon...but Brandon soon realizes that he's talking to Claire, and not Rory. Claire cheekily tells an amused Brandon that Steve needs to be taught a lesson. He so does. Brandon grins at her and is in total agreement with the prank. Steve, meanwhile, is already putting the moves on “Claire” by inviting her to join him in his mom's cabana. She appears to be game for a meaningless romp in the sack and refers to him as “big boy”.
Dylan's house. When Dylan arrives home, Brenda asks him how things at her father's office went. He assures her that all is well, and that they're having dinner with her parents. Brenda is reluctant to go, but gives in when Dylan insists.
Steve's mom's cabana. After Steve mixes margaritas, he starts kissing “Claire”. Like the horse's ass he regularly proves himself to be, he tells her that he and Rory had nothing going on and that she was boring and stupid. He tells “Claire” she's much hotter and sexier than her identical twin sister, and gets really amorous. When he moans that he wants the two of them to “do it” I completely lost my lunch. Fortunately, “Claire” puts an end to this date night horror and tells him that the jig is up and that she's Rory. She then shoves him off of her and calls him slimy. Awesome!
The Walsh house. Brenda and Dylan arrive in time for dinner. Brenda starts the evening off by telling her beleaguered parents that the only reason she came was because Dylan told her too. An alarmed Dylan quietly cautions her not to say anything too bitchy that she may regret later.
Dinner is a stilted, awkward affair. Papa Walsh compliments the food, and Mama Walsh tells him that it's a Parisian recipe. And speaking of Paris, Papa Walsh hands his daughter an envelop, which contains a round trip ticket to Paris. Mama Walsh explains to Brenda that shipping her off for the summer is the best way they can all get some breathing space. Brenda, of course, reacts by getting mad and accuses her parents of bribing her in order to separate her from Dylan. She snarls about how it's so Beverly Hills that she can't even look at them, and abruptly leaves the table and runs upstairs. Dylan follows her and advises her to think clearly. He tells her that spending the summer in Paris would be a wonderful opportunity. Mama Walsh then enters the room and makes it clear that the trip was her idea. She apparently wants her prickly daughter to enjoy some of the experiences that she herself had to squander as a result of hooking up with Jimbo at such a young age. To illustrate this point, she says that she's still never been to Paris or London. She also assures Brenda that their family will get through this latest crisis, Paris or no Paris. When she leaves the room, Brenda asks Dylan why everything is so complicated, and he's like “D'yuh. It's actually very simple.” He tells her to go to Paris and have the time of her life...and that if their relationship is as strong as they're under the illusion that it is, they'll survive not seeing each other for six weeks.
As Dylan leaves the house, Papa Walsh thanks him for helping convince Brenda to make the trip. Dylan refrains from acting like his usual dickish self and is pleasant in return. However, he can't keep himself from snarking that he would have appreciated it if Papa Walsh had just come out and asked him for this favor instead of threatening to impound the assets of his trust. Point taken. The two part on a positive note.
Beverly Hills Beach Club. Brandon complains to Steve about how Brenda got rewarded with a trip to Paris after throwing a tantrum and running off to live with her boyfriend. Steve's just like “Yeah, whatever” because he's still preoccupied with the lingering humiliation of the Rory/Claire debacle, so Brandon vows to help his boneheaded friend find a woman. Ahn-drea suddenly walks by and says hi to the two of them. Brandon rushes over to her and starts to tell her about how Brenda's going to France for the summer and that they're throwing her a bon voyage party, but Ahn-drea just yeah yeahs him and rushes toward her new boyfriend, Jay Thurman. They embrace and kiss. As Brandon watches, mystified, Steve remarks that it's hard to believe she's still going out with Jay Thurman. I find it harder to believe that Jay Thurman is voluntarily going out with her. For whatever reason, this has given Brandon a surge of motivation to find a girl of his own.
Papa Walsh is strolling with Brenda, telling her that life is too short for them to be fighting all the time. He reminds her how important it is to have the love and support of her parents, and that while she's in Paris she should think long and hard about the kind of relationship she wants to have with her family. Brenda agrees and thanks him for the opportunity that she in no way deserves.
Before climbing into the airport shuttle, Donna bids David adieu and promises to call from across the pond. Brandon wishes Brenda good luck and hugs her goodbye. She then ambles over to Dylan and says goodbye to him. He mutters that she'd better not fall in love in Paris, and the two kiss before she too climbs into the shuttle. Suddenly there's a new mini crisis: Donna has just remembered that she's afraid of flying. Jesus.
As the gang waves goodbye, Kelly announces to no one in particular that she doesn't regret staying home for the summer. Dylan is suddenly standing next to her, and she turns to him and says that maybe she'll get together with him sometime. He says he may hold her to that. The two saunter off together as Brenda helplessly waves goodbye from the shuttle.