By Jennifer Abella
Previously on “Emma Approved” … Emma was down, but not out. Plus, we met Izzy!
Episode 28 (Sister Attack): Emma convinced Mrs. Izzy “Everything Is Great, No, Really, Great” Knightley to stay a few more days, so Izzy can be her client. Izzy finally admits she thinks John doesn’t care what she has to say. Case in point: She wants to redo their kitchen to make her life easier, but John refuses — it’s not part of their all-important “10-year plan.” Man, those Knightley boys are big on plans, but John does not sound like the nicest guy (because that would be ALEX, duh). Emma wants Izzy to stand up to John, but an angry Izzy tells her to stay out of it, saying meddling has always been Emma’s worst habit. THANK YOU, IZZY. But as always, Emma eventually gets her way.
Episode 29 (Change of Plans): During Emma’s first consulting session with Izzy, Izzy is firmly in the “I’m happynothappy to let my husband dictate our life.” Emma and Harriet brainstorm a solution to Izzy’s problem. Emma says the Knightleys take an annual camping trip to Joshua Tree, but this year, Emma says Izzy will go where she wants to go. Emma orders Harriet to book the family tickets to Hawaii, and unless Izzy has been harboring a lifelong dream to visit Hawaii, Emma’s certainly being presumptuous. Also, who’s paying for these tickets? Emma presents Operation Aloha to Izzy, who is at first reluctant but eventually psychs herself to stand up to John. You go, Izzy.
Episode 30 (Winners and Losers): Em tells us today’s the day Izzy is going to surprise John with their new vacation plans … and, uh-oh, Alex doesn’t know about Emma’s scheme. He’s annoyed that once again Emma’s going behind people’s back, etc. Seriously, Alex, it’s what she does. Then an upset Izzy says John is refusing to go to Hawaii. She’s berates herself for putting her needs ahead of John’s, for being selfish, even though that’s what he’s doing to her. She says she’s being a hypocrite; Emma says she’s just fighting fire with fire. And for once, I’m on Emma’s side: Izzy should get a say in what the family does! Free Izzy! But Izzy lashes out, telling Emma to just let it go and storms out, with Emma on her heels. Yikes. That did not go well.
Episode 31 (Listening, Again): Emma’s sad that Izzy’s probably on her way to Joshua Tree. Alex confronts Emma, demanding she turn off the camera. She refuses, and Alex lets her have it before us all: He wanted to believe Emma wouldn’t get involved in John and Izzy’s problems. You dream that impossible dream, Alex. He says he just heard from John: Izzy is refusing to go to Joshua Tree. Emma says all she did was listen to Izzy and help her. She insists her instincts are right here, and — shocker of all shockers — he agrees. Turns out he’s okay with Emma’s helping Izzy. He’s gonna call John and tell him to listen to his wife. Izzy arrives, and we finally get to the root of the problem. Izzy wants to go back to school instead of being a stay-at-home mom. … I knew it couldn’t be just about kitchens renos and Joshua Tree. You know what? Sometimes Emma is really good at this helping-people thing, even if her methods aren’t the greatest.
Episode 32 (Back in Business): So in the end, instead of Hawaii or Joshua Tree, the Knightleys go back home to look for schools for Izzy. Emma is so excited that Izzy is happy but she’s even happier that her own slump is over! “Emma Woodhouse: 1 for 1!” In Harriet-land, Harriet’s started her own music club. And in other news, when Alex and Emma make up, he says they need to work on their communications. He says she was born to help people, and they just … gaze at each other. If you are yelling at your screen for them to JUST KISS ALREADY, you are not alone.
(If you’re interested: Harriet’s first video: It’s a little ditty about being heartbroken and writing a song on her ukulele. A lot of it rhymes with “hey.”)
Jennifer Abella is a TV/movie/pop culture/knitting/sewing/Jane Austen geek. Oh, and a total Anglophile. Follow @nextjen on Twitter. And remember to like Jane Austen Summer Program on Facebook and follow @JASPhotline on Twitter.