It was only a matter of time before a TV family with five teens had a teen pregnancy story line, and friends, this is that episode. Read on for our recap of The Fosters 4×14, “Doors and Windows.”
Problems vs. solutions
In last week’s episode, Stef forced the kids to remove their bedroom doors on account of there being too many secrets in the family. At the beginning of The Fosters 4×14, Brandon’s kvetching about this development because kvetching is basically all Brandon does, with the exception of making bad choices. Lena tells him to “try to be part of the solution instead of the problem – for once.” Sick burn. Meanwhile, a post-breakup Mariana asks to be homeschooled, Stef calls her “melodramatic,” and Jesus falls while trying to get up the stairs. And this is all before the opening credits of The Fosters 4×14.
Elsewhere, Callie and Aaron update Kyle on their efforts to find the person who killed Martha Johnson, the woman he’s locked up for murdering. They need a judge to order their main suspect – the victim’s grandson, Troy – to take a DNA test, but that won’t happen unless a compelling motive comes to light. Kyle thinks Troy could have been after Martha’s money, and Stef finds out that Martha took her grandson out of her will just a few days before she was killed, giving him a hell of a motive. However, after Detective Gray gives Stef access to the case files, she learns that Troy has an airtight alibi thanks to his time card from work and security camera footage.
A question of character
As The Fosters 4×14 continues, we pivot to the other case Callie’s involved in – her own. Her lawyers explain that jurors in he-said/she-said cases focus on the character of the defendant, and because Callie’s record won’t do her any favors, they want to settle for the low, low price of $300,000. Robert has the money and is willing to pay, but for Callie, it’s not that simple. In her eyes, she did nothing wrong, so she shouldn’t have to pay reparations to the people in the other car – and definitely not to Troy.
So remember how Callie changed her mind about her senior project like three times? Surprise: After looking at her file with Aaron, she has another new concept. This time, she plans to recreate her solitary confinement cell from juvie and wallpaper it with the pages of her file. She gets the cell built with the help of an unlikely duo – Aaron and AJ – but things start to go awry as Callie prepares to start wallpapering. When Aaron tries to explain the meaning behind the project, it makes AJ feel as if Aaron knows Callie better than her own boyfriend.
Callie: “What is the matter?”
AJ: “Well, for one, I think Aaron should let you answer for yourself.”
Callie: “I don’t really think he was trying to answer for me, but he’s right.”
“This girl deserves a break”
Predictably, things go downhill from there – and Callie’s revelation about wanting to take her chances in court rather than leverage her biological father’s privilege doesn’t exactly help matters. Although she wants to stick to her guns, Stef and Lena put the kibosh on her plans, claiming it’s simply too big of a risk to take the case to trial. Looks like Callie’s settling after all – and so is Stef, who accepts a promotion to become a detective and decides to keep quiet about Detective Gray making Kyle’s alibi witness recant his story… for now.
That night, Aaron drops by to see how Callie’s senior project is going. The wallpaper weaves together words from the report and photos of Callie at all different ages, with a jarring effect. Callie updates Aaron on the lack of evidence against Troy and talks about the unfairness of Kyle spending life in prison while she gets out of trouble thanks to the settlement. Aaron beams her flashlight onto the wall and declares, “This girl deserves a break, don’t you think?” They almost kiss, but ultimately Aaron simply offers to help Callie with her work.
No secrets anymore
Over at the rehab center, Jesus has an outburst much like the one that concluded last week’s episode, prompting Lena to ask, “Is it too early for vodka?” As far as I’m concerned, if you’re raising five teens, it’s never too early for vodka. Brandon volunteers to give Lena a break by taking Jesus to rehab the next day, where he encounters music therapist Grace. She just so happens to be young and attractive (I think we see where this is going), and Brandon is inspired to incorporate music into Jesus’ recovery. Hopefully it helps, because right now, Jesus can’t read at all – and whenever people get close to discovering his secret, he pushes them away.
Speaking of secrets, Emma’s pregnant, despite telling Mariana she isn’t. She comes clean to Brandon, and although Jesus doesn’t overhear their conversation, he does see them acting suspiciously.
Meanwhile, Mariana’s therapist determines that she’s struggling with feelings of powerlessness that date back to her early childhood. “Bedroom doors aren’t the reason kids shut their parents out – lack of trust is,” he explains to Stef and Lena. He urges the moms to listen to their kids, see things from their perspective, and treat them all the same, even if one kid’s problems (uh, Brandon’s) don’t seem as big as another’s. Stef and Lena agree to work on trusting the kids if the kids stop keeping secrets.
As The Fosters 4×14 draws to a close, Mariana truly seems to be taking the no-secrets agreement seriously. She creates a Twitter account called @NoSecretsAnymor (the site has a 15-letter username cap, in case you were wondering). She shares that she stole her brother’s ADHD meds, then invites other users to contribute.
What did you think of The Fosters 4×14, “Doors and Windows”?