After being woefully absent from our screens since March, The Fosters is back with a vengeance. Read on for our recap of The Fosters 3×01, “Wreckage.”
A bad dream
The second season of The Fosters ended with Stef being called to the scene of a horrific car crash involving Mariana, Jesus and their pregnant birth mother, Ana. The Fosters 3×01 begins with Stef arriving at the scene to find Mariana unharmed but Jesus and Ana bloodied and being wheeled away to ambulances – and then Stef wakes up. Was the car crash nothing more than a bad dream?
Cut to Stef and Lena calling a very much alive Jesus at his boarding school, and Brandon leaving for his first day at prestigious music school Idyllwild’s summer program. Lena tells him to drive safe – twice. Meanwhile, on the phone, Mariana is telling Jesus that Ana is doing “OK, but not great.” …So maybe the crash wasn’t a bad dream after all? Mike shows up and confirms it: He and Stef are going to talk to the man who owns the truck that was involved in the crash to see if they can find a lead.
As Jude prepares to meet Connor before summer school, Callie and Lena ask if they’ve decided whether to be open about their relationship or not, and Jude says they haven’t really talked about it. When they do discuss it, Jude says they should keep it quiet because it’s nobody’s business, but Connor seems unconvinced. Later, when Connor’s ex-girlfriend Daria is trying to figure out why he broke up with her, Daria’s BFF Taylor urges Connor to admit he’s into Jude, but he says he can’t.
Remember Anchor Beach principal, Monte? She invites Lena to go to a conference with her – which wouldn’t be a problem if they hadn’t kissed in The Fosters 2×21.
Monte: When are things going to stop being weird between us? I don’t even know what that little kiss was about. I’m straight. I was married. It was nothing. …Right?
Lena: Yes. Absolutely.
Somehow, I doubt this is the end of it, but they agree to “go back to how things were” and Lena says she’ll think about the trip.
Over at Ana’s parents’ house, Mariana is looking after Ana – who’s wearing a full-body brace from the accident – and baby Isabella. Ana’s concerned that Stef and Lena might be worried about Mariana helping out so much, but Mariana says they’re fine about it. Her boyfriend, Mat, though? Not so much – and Someone’s Little Sister is about to go on tour. Once Ana gets the brace off, she tells Mariana that she needs to spend some time alone with her baby, and urges Mariana to go to the end-of-school party where the band will be performing. Mariana confesses to Callie that she’s worried about Mat meeting other girls on the road, but she has a plan: To lose her virginity to him.
At Idyllwild, Brandon discovers that he isn’t registered as a pianist after all, but as a composer. He thinks it’s a mistake, but it turns out he never read his acceptance letter properly. D’oh. It may be for the best, though – Ekaterina (“Call me Kat”), the first pianist he meets, isn’t exactly friendly. Brandon’s thrown for a loop and wondering what his next move should be, but after Kat hears him play, she starts being a little nicer and tells him his piece is “lovely.” Could The Fosters 3×01 be looking up for Brandon? Not so fast. When Brandon and Kat are paired up to work together, she objects, claiming she’s more skilled than he is and she shouldn’t be paired with a newbie. “You said my piece was lovely!” Brandon protests. “Sure, it’s lovely – for a 6-year-old,” Kat retorts. Ouuuch. The following day, Brandon skips camp and uses the end-of-school party as an excuse.
Callie’s making a new friend too, in the form of foster kid AJ. The two get off to a rough start after he judges her “privileged life” based on appearances, but when he drops by the youth center where she volunteers, she tells him her story and he apologizes. The two bond over AJ’s drawing of a superhero character he made up when he and his brother were in the system, but when Callie asks where his brother is now, he shuts down. Still, her boss, Rafael, tells her she has a gift for getting kids to open up and urges her to consider working at the center after her independent study is over. Later, Callie discovers AJ has been sleeping at the center and tries to offer help, but he runs away – only to appear at the end-of-school party. He explains that he ran away from his foster home to meet up with his brother, but his brother never showed up and now he has nowhere to stay. Callie ultimately lets him crash at the center, officially making her first bad decision of The Fosters 3×01 and season 3 as a whole.
AJ’s appearance isn’t the only drama that goes down at the party; a classmate of Connor and Jude’s walks up to them and asks if they’re really gay for each other. Connor gets defensive and Jude is confused, thinking Connor told people they were dating after agreeing not to. Taylor admits it was her, and she thought she was helping. Pro tip: Outing someone isn’t helpful. “It’s not like anyone cares if you’re gay,” Daria assures them. “I’m not gay!” Jude exclaims before storming off.
Mariana isn’t faring much better in the relationship department: Mat says it’s not the right time for them to sleep together, and they say an awkward goodbye before he heads off to prepare for the tour, leaving her alone on the beach. Eventually, Wyatt wanders up and asks if she’d like a beer. She admires his hair, they flirt a little aaaand before you know it, they’re making out. This is wrong for so many different reasons. How far do they go? Well, the following morning, Mariana tells Callie she had sex – she just doesn’t say who her partner was.
Back at the party, Brandon and Lou have a more productive conversation in which she encourage him not to give up on Idyllwild and says Someone’s Little Sister won’t be playing his songs on tour out of respect. Brandon says the band should play his songs because if he’s going to be a composer, he needs to get used to other people playing his songs. That’s the spirit.
After running into a series of dead ends in her investigation, Stef looks at the wrecked car one last time before it goes to the scrap heap, then heads to the party to find Lena. She finally admits that she’s having a hard time dealing with what happened.
They said someone was dead. They said there were reported fatalities and when I walked up and I saw the Volvo was crushed like a beer can, I thought we lost them. I thought my babies were gone and I thought I’d never be OK ever again. I just wanted to see you.
After she calms Stef down, Lena seeks out Monte and says she has too much going on at home to go to the conference.
In other relationship-mending news, Connor tracks down Jude and they have a heart-to-heart. Jude reassures Connor that he still wants to be his boyfriend, but he has a problem with the “gay” label.
My whole life, I’ve always been labeled as something. The new kid or the foster kid or the kid with the dead mom, and I’m sick of it. I mean, why can’t I just be Jude? I just want to be Jude for a while.
Then they hold hands and it’s REALLY CUTE.
Speaking of really cute, Lena suggests that she and Stef take a trip to get away from everything for a while. Stef suggest Catalina, Lena says “I like Catalina,” and Stef replies, “I do too, as long as you’re there.” Of course, there are financial considerations to be made, but Stef says she’ll make it a priority. However, the following morning, the ceiling below the bathroom caves in and makes it rain in the kitchen, putting the kibosh on their getaway.
Callie’s day isn’t exactly going according to plan either: She shows up at the center to find AJ gone, along with some cans of spray paint. She tells Rafael what happened and reminds him that she needs her independent study to graduate, but he fires her. So much drama in such little time! Tune in next Monday at 8/7c for the fallout.