Jam-packed with emotions, embraces and tears while still making time for lighthearted moments, this week's episode of "Parenthood," titled "The M Word," was easily the best of the season.
Let's start with Jasmine, who is officially ready to take on motherhood. Which means one thing: it's time to get a minivan. Not surprisingly, Crosby is not on board. He's living the life in his red convertible, no way is he gonna impress his super hip clients when he rolls up in a Sienna. But of course, Jasmine gets her way and Crosby is forced to resign to his new life as a soccer dad.
Meanwhile, tension continues to build between Julia and Joel. Joel is totally swamped with work thanks to Pete (ew) and doesn't even have time to canvass the neighborhood for Kristina with the rest of Braverman clan. So Julia wanders the streets, dragging Victor and Sydney from house to house to try and gain voters for Kristina. One of the doors they knock on just so happens to be Ed's house, Julia's Green Team partner in crime. Ed graciously invites Julia and the kids in, and Julia and Ed end up having another bonding session about unemployment and feed the kids dinner together, sort of like one big happy family. When Ed's wife gets home, Julia abruptly rushes the kids out, making the whole incident much more awkward than it needed to be. Which only furthers the question, what's going to happen between Julia and Ed? Only time will tell ...
Camille is still pushing for a small condo in the city, and for the first time Zeke is finally showing a little interest. He agrees to meet with the realtor, but during the tour, Camille can tell that Zeke hates it and would be miserable cooped up in a condo. She tells the realtor that they're not interested in the condo, but that doesn't mean she's ready to settle into her old routine. She announces to Zeke that her art class is going on a month-long trip to Italy and she wants to go. She doesn't invite Zeke along on the trip. It's clear that Camille wants adventure and independence, even if that means leaving Zeke behind. Still, it seems a little harsh to not even extend the invite to Zeke. I mean c'mon Camille, at least give him the opportunity to say yes and prove you wrong!
Kristina's mayoral campaign continues to be the inspiring plot of the season. This week Kristina battled it out with Bob Little in a debate, giving her the first real taste of what it means to run for mayor. After polls reported low numbers, Kristina wasn't feeling too hopeful. Only 16% of voters even knew who Kristina was and only 7% were planning on voting for her. Yikes! But Kristina isn't one to give up. Heather spends the night aggressively drilling Kristina with sample debate questions, telling her what she needs to captivate the audience. Heather tries to convince Kristina that her best angle is to play up Max's difficulties in the public schools, but Kristina is not down to exploit her son just to win a debate. When the debate first begins, things aren't looking too good for Kristina. Bob Little totally dominates the conversation, cutting Kristina off and not even giving her the opportunity to answer. But when the mother of a deaf girl takes to the podium, asking Kristina and Bob what can be done to help the special needs students within the public schools, Kristina knows this is a question she can truly answer. Kristina tearfully tells the woman about her struggles to find Max a place in the public school system, promising the woman that if elected, she will do everything in her power to ensure that the special needs students will get the attention they need. In a statistical anomaly, as Max repeatedly tells her, Kristina comes out victorious in the debate and for the first time it seems like Kristina might actually have a shot at winning this thing! It's emotional and inspiring in the most Parenthood-y way possible, which is exactly what we all needed!
Last but not least, Amber and Sarah. As we all know, Sarah has been seriously struggling with Amber's upcoming marriage to Ryan. Every time she attempts to be supportive her true feelings find a way out and Amber and Sarah end up in an exploding fight. This episode starts out no different. Sarah invites Amber over for a friendly brunch of frittata and mimosas, which quickly evolves into a screaming match about Ryan. Amber has had enough, so she and Ryan decide to skip the wedding nonsense and head to city hall to make it official. Amber asks Drew to be her witness, but when Drew realizes that Amber is trying to plan a wedding sans Sarah, he's not on board. Amber obviously feels betrayed, but let's be real, it wasn't exactly fair to put Drew in that position. Meanwhile, Sarah has a heart to heart with her mom, who explains to Sarah that pushing her daughter away won't fix the problem. Camille and Zeke had tried to put their foot down when Sarah wanted to marry Seth and all it did was damage their relationship with Sarah. Sarah finally seems to recognize what it would mean to lose Amber, and shows up at Amber's apartment in tears, telling her that she's finally ready to support and be there for her through whatever life throws at her. They share a tearful embrace, bringing up all those lovey, sappy, emotional feelings that "Parenthood" is so good at capturing. Let's just say tissues were definitely used.