Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Summer TV Rewind: Kyle XY 1.05: “This is Not a Test”

“If I’m stuck with a tutor all day I’ll never learn what I need to. Why do people do what they do?”
- Kyle

This episode marks the halfway point for our journey with Kyle and the Tragers. Summer has ended and the new school year is just beginning. Kyle has finally been registered and he’s more than eager to go and learn all kinds of new things. Lori and Josh are less thrilled. Oh and Steven and Nicole are looking forward to a little alone time while the kids are at school. There’s really two different storylines in this episode. What happens at school and what happens at home with Foss. Because yes Tom Foss is back and being even creepier than usual. As soon as the family leaves the house for the day, he breaks in and is wandering around the house. He spends quite a bit of time in Kyle’s room.

At school, Vice Principal Hooper is still being kind of a jerk about Kyle being at the school and getting a tutor. He needs to provide placement testing to even determine what a tutor could do with Kyle but our hero has wandered off. Josh ends up in remedial English where he is clearly there just because he was a slacker in middle school. But he makes kind of a bad impression on another student named Toby who clearly has reading difficulties (probably a kid who would have been in my mother’s reading program). And Lori is still on the outs with Hilary. She wore the same shirt as Hilary and she is making Lori’s life very uncomfortable because of it. She gets Lori in trouble during math class by passing notes and then snubs her in the cafeteria at lunch time and tosses soda on her shirt. It seems Hilary is still pissed at Lori calling her a slut at the party in the last episode. Kyle starts out the testing period expecting to be taught things or do math but he’s given a history test. He clearly knows nothing and when the bell rings, he wanders out amongst the student body. Before ultimately heading to the cafeteria for lunch, he stops by Lori’s math classroom and solves the complex equation on the board. It would seem Kyle is committing social suicide by sitting with the kid he is. But they are kind of bonding over drawing and comic books until Kyle admits he doesn’t know much of anything. So his newfound friend introduces him to the library. Over the course of the rest of the school day Kyle learns everything there is to know about human history as Vice Principal Hooper combs the school (unsuccessfully) for him. Kyle has a rather unfortunate encounter with Amanda and Charlie in the library as he’s absorbing all of the world’s knowledge. Charlie picks up on the fact that Kyle doesn’t seem to like him and even though Amanda assures him that she and Kyle are just friends, it doesn’t stop her from going back to the library just to confirm that Kyle doesn’t have feelings for her. One thing I’ve started to notice in the Kyle and Amanda scenes is that they seem to have a musical theme that plays in the background. It’s a fairly common way to link emotional triggers with characters on TV. It seems that Lori’s day is just getting worse. Declan catches up to her in the hallway and tries to ask her how she’s doing but she kind of blows up at him, thinking he meant about their awkward sex and the aftermath at the party. She yells at him quite angrily until he says he was worried about her given how Hilary treated her during the day and Lori storms off rather embarrassed.

Back at home, Nicole gets home while Foss is still in the house and in order to avoid getting caught, he breaks a window in Kyle’s room and then poses as a security guy patrolling the neighborhood. Steven is rightly skeptical of Foss’s presence and even goes so far as to call the security company. They confirm that Foss is a new employee with an impressive military career and work in private security. So he’s legit but he’s still stalking them all. Fantastic. Steven and Nicole’s midday rendezvous is interrupted by a call from the school about Kyle. Oh boy! It seems that in addition to allegedly ignoring the test, Kyle is not in a fight with the kid from Josh’s English class. To be fair to Josh and Kyle, the other kid started it. But Kyle certainly finished it without throwing a single punch. The principal is all ready to kick him out of school (or rather deny him entrance) when Lori convinces her math teacher she knows who solved the problem. This of course leads to said teacher busting into the meeting and demanding that he be able to work with Kyle. Interestingly, they do allow Kyle to take all the placement tests even though there’s only a half hour left in the testing period. This being Kyle he finishes with time to spare.

Lori and Declan manage to make up after her blow up and he even passes up coffee with Hilary and the girls to hang with Lori. They seem to be moving in the right direction at the very least. I have to say (having already seen the entire series) Declan really grows on you. He has some interesting plotlines coming up for sure and not in ways you might expect. With Kyle having passed the tests with perfect scores (did anyone doubt it?) Kyle says he doesn’t want a tutor. He wants to go to class like everyone else. He figures that sure he knows facts and dates but he doesn’t know why people act the way they do. That’s what he really wants to learn. And it seems his comic book drawing friend sees him as something of a super hero. As the family settles in for the night, we see that Foss actually installed cameras in most of the rooms (even the bathroom…ew gross).

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