I’m sorry for the goofy reference to an old Chicago ballad in the title. See how easy that was, Vishal? Right out of the gate I apologized. I wasn’t even really in the wrong, but in case someone didn’t get the reference or hates the band, or Peter Cetera for leaving it, I wanted to apologize. This entire episode could have taken a whole different tone if Vishal hadn’t been so prideful and had said those two little words. Alas, ’twas not to be.
Prep is in full swing to celebrate Diwali. We learned through Brian’s phone-a-friend call what Rangoli is. To my surprise it’s a decorating art form with colorful powders to welcome in the goddess Lakshmi. I can’t be too hard on Brian for having to call Dharma though. With all of the delicious food we’ve seen them preparing, I would have assumed it was some delicious combo of crab rangoon and ravioli. Monica and Raj are also cooking and decorating, while Chitra and Anish are breaking out Chitra’s cherished Costco LED grapes.
Anish fills her mom in on what’s been going down with Vishal and Amrit. It looks like Chitra thinks that Anish should sit down and hash it out with Vishal if she values the friendship. Chitra’s also worried that her friendship with Reshma might get awkward if their kids are in a spat.
Fire Tower commences and everyone is decked out in their finest. Absolutely splendid fashion eye candy, especially Monica and Bali. I’m starting to understand where Anish’s “village idiot” comment came into play with Vishal though. As he and Amrit arrived together, Amrit said he was going to need a drink or two before he talked to Bali and Anish. Vishal’s reply? “Hashtag Me Too.” Super cringey and socially tone deaf.
We get to meet a few new people, two of them being Bali’s parents. Bali’s mom is also named Reshma, so she’ll be Reshma C from now on to make things less confusing. She is a stunner and also the person who gave Bali her fashion sense. Her dad is handsome as well, so it’s no wonder Bali wound up so gorgeous.
Shaan is back this episode and we’re introduced to his brother Dillon. Hot chai is served when Amrit confesses that he and Dillon have had a make-out sesh or two. Do tell! Unlike Amrit, whose coming out happened one-on-one with friends when he was drunk, Dillon came out to everyone at once in an article in his student newspaper. I find that admirable and I’m excited to find out more about him.
Back to the dramatic parts though, which funnily enough the Closed Captioning clued me into by typing “Tense music.” Total understatement by the way. Might want to toss “uber” or “really” in front as a qualifier. Bali fills Monica in that Anish won’t be coming to Fire Tower even though she had planned on it. Bali plays it down that she just wanted to celebrate at home with her family. The truth of the matter is that Anish decided she doesn’t want to be around toxic people. Instead she and Chitra teach Gopal what a “shart” is. If you don’t know, feel free to check it out on the Urban Dictionary, because I just ate.
Without Anisha there, the showdown is 2 against 1 with Vishal and Amrit going toe-to-toe with Bali. The two guys could’ve had a foursome and still wouldn’t have been able to win out over her, who had them point for point. She did sneak in a little lie though, because we all saw her fill Anish in on her conversation with Amrit that morning. The rest of the time she was spot on, including when she pointed out that Amrit runs to Vishal in the same way. The only low point was when she attempted to do an epic Dynasty-esque walk-off in a huff, only to be thwarted by locked doors. It’s okay, girl. Joan Collins would still be proud.
We get a peek at Anish’s designs and as a fluffy gal myself, I’m glad she’s being size inclusive. Her comment about the grief she’s getting for designing for fuller figures while not having one herself was priceless. She’s right after all, it’s not like babies are designing baby clothes. (Bonus plug for her business: you can subscribe at shop.currently.com to be notified when the next collection is available.)
The Patel boys meet up with Amrit and Vishal and discuss Nicholas’ impending visit. Lavina (in an epically supportive move) seemed unfazed by the prospect of Nicholas staying in Amrit’s room with him. Vishal, on the other hand, appeared shocked and dismayed by the mere notion of it. Apparently he and Richa don’t even hold hands in front of his parents. I’m fairly conservative about PDA myself, but that’s a little strict for me even.
At Raj and Monica’s house, Raj is pointing out that Monica looked like a bride and jokingly pushes for grandkids. Monica’s focus isn’t on getting married and having a family right now though. She’s more concerned about whether she should make the jeté into opening her own dance studio. Raj is completely supportive and wants to be sure she doesn’t let life pass her by like she did.
In what comes off akin to an Indian version of a Goodfellas sit-down, Bali and Anish meet up with Vishal and Amrit to put the tensions to rest. Spoiler alert: it ain’t happening. As I shared in the title, Vishal can’t seem to muster an apology because he doesn’t feel like he did anything wrong. Amrit realizes that his comments were out of line and does quickly offer one up to Anish, who readily accepts it. That’s all she’s really looking for in this; an acknowledgement of her hurt. Vishal’s inability to recognize that makes me wonder if it will be any real loss for Anish if they’re unable to mend the friendship.
We end with the giant elephant that has been stomping it’s way through every room since we left the pumpkin patch. Monica and Brian have their own meet-up to clear the air, but this time it’s about a friendship blossoming into more, rather than withering into less. Monica sadly is unable to give Brian the answer he was hoping for, because after his rejection of her years ago, she put their friendship in a box. It doesn’t look like she’s comfortable opening it anytime soon. I may be a realist in everyday life, but when it comes to love…I’m forever an optimist, so I’m still holding onto hope.
Next week the tension continues and hits the road to Key West. I’m thinking it’ll likely be more of a Side-Eye bus than a Party bus, but we’ll have to wait and see. I hope you’ll be joining me!