Break-ups are hard, even for Katy Keene.
Sure, everything seems to work itself out on this show, but in the latest episode "Here Comes The Sun," Katy spends a fair amount of time in the dumps about her split from K.O. Add to that a mistake at work that could cost her job, relationship troubles for Jorge and Josie, and an accidental porno shooting at Pepper's Plant and, well, the world of Katy Keene is starting to get real messy.
We're Jessica Toomer and Alyssa Fikse and we'll help you wade through it.
Warning: This discussion contains spoilers for Season 1, Episode 4 of Katy Keene.
Break Up Blues
Alyssa: The episode opens with Katy asleep in the Lacy's window without pants, so you know some shenanigans are going to occur. Before we get the answer to how in the world she ended up in such an unprofessional situation, we get a look at how Katy is handling her break up with KO. Reader: she is not doing well. She isn't sleeping, she isn't making clothes, and she keeps texting her ex despite being left on read. Someone help this girl. She is wearing ballet flats and that's basically an S.O.S spelled out on an abandoned beach in palm leaves.
Jessica: The ballet flats I could overlook. Who walks around in heels all day because they want to, anyway? That's a patriarchal construct and I won't punish Katy for preferring comfortable footwear. But girl, you just can't wake up in your undies in the window display at your job. That sh*t doesn't fly anywhere. Honestly, I'm glad the show is making Katy suffer through this break-up a bit. She brought it on, but it's still a hard thing to go through at any age, especially when you're still young and so naive about the world. But damn, are her friends completely heartless this episode. It's been a week and they're already pushing her to get wasted and make out with randos? It might be more calories but personally, I support Katy's current coping method of "Alexa, more ice cream."
Alyssa: While Katy is doing some warranted wallowing, Josie is faced with a slightly terrifying prospect: Alex wants her to meet his dad. His father has shown no indication that he wants to get Cabot Records back up and running, but Alex thinks that Josie could be the voice that causes a change of heart and purse strings. Jorge is making bedroom moves with his hunky firefighter boyfriend Bernie and lives through every millennial's nightmare when his parents interrupt his hook-up. Luckily, Jorge's parents are super supportive of his lifestyle and his hot new piece. However, a few comments from his dad about how masculine Bernie is touches on some deep insecurities on Jorge's part.
Jessica: All those muscles would make me question my masculinity too, and I don't even care about that sh*t. It's a harmless enough joke but it really weighs on Jorge who had to endure that kind of thing during his childhood and is still fighting against it when it comes to his career. A boy can wear sequined see-through tops and still be manly, y'all. This is 2020. And while Jorge tries to temper his low self-esteem, Pepper is renting out her warehouse for an arthouse erotica flick based on Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather. Y'all, I did a full-on spit-take when that aspiring director uttered the words "The Rodfather" with a straight face. Someone give the boy an Oscar.
Alyssa: Truly an awards-worthy performance if I've ever seen one. Despite black being arguably the chicest color, everyone at Lacy's is aghast when Katy shows up sporting an enviable winter goth aesthetic. Francois is ready to send her home with a broken heart, but Gloria swoops in because she needs Katy to woo a new client: designer Guy La Montagne. Guy is looking to launch his new line somewhere, and Gloria wants to sign him exclusively to Lacy's. Apparently being an insanely expensive department store isn't as lucrative as it once was, so unless they can procure Guy, Lacy's will be one of many to fall on the battlefield of the class war.
Jessica: Anyone else notice that Guy is also Satan from Chilling Adventures of Sabrina? Is this a low-key crossover? Will the handsome New York designer reveal himself as the Devil midway through the season and force Katy to do his evil bidding? He's not ruling in Hell anymore, so anything is possible. Still, Katy totally flubs her first meeting with the dude, mistaking his work for McQueen's — which, take the damn compliment, my man. So now Katy's heartbroken and probably out of a job, unless she can sway Guy to sell exclusively at Lacy's. And she's not the only one stuck at a career crossroads.
Alyssa: She definitely is not the only one. Katy asks Pepper for some help with Guy (OF COURSE Pepper knows him), and everyone dances it out to some "Dirrty"-era Xtina before going off on their missions for the night. Most importantly, Josie goes with Alex to meet his father at the family club, complete with an NDA. When Mr. Cabot arrives, Alex awkwardly segues into Josie singing a lovely rendition of "His Eye Is On The Sparrow" before SURPRISE! Xandra is there and turns it into an extremely tense duet. She is none too pleased that Alex went behind her back on this one, and in their argument, the truth comes out: yes, they are hooking up/used to hook up because they are step-siblings, not blood relations. YIKES. I mean, when we're right, we're right.
Jessica: And we're always right about incest, aren't we? Look, the vibes these two were throwing off just couldn't be ignored. He bought her a silk robe for Valentine's Day, FFS! Honestly, it's a bit less creepy than I Imagined — at least they aren't blood-related — but the choice to lie and say they're twins is just weird AF. Josie, honey, get out of this Flowers in the Attic nightmare right now!
Alyssa: Josie handles this in the perfect way: by calling them both out on their grossness and saying that she respects herself more than this mess before storming out. However, the meeting wasn't a total loss. As it so happens, Xandra was set to meet up with Guy to lure him over to their merchandising site. I am not sure exactly what the Cabots' business is because it seems like it varies wildly in order to suit the plot. Josie passes the club info onto Katy and our girl puts on her sparkly red pumps and makes a beeline to Studio 34 with Josie, Jorge, and Pepper in tow.
Jessica: They brave a back alley filled with oversized rats to get there, but Studio 34 is worth it. Not only is the music poppin' and the drinks flowin', but Josie manages to pull Xandra away from Guy so Katy can make her move and Jorge gets down on the floor with his beau. Of course, the club is the perfect place to ramp up the angst so Jorge gets a bit jealous of all the attention his heroic Bernie is getting, Katy insults Guy when he doesn't fall for her charms and her sickly-sweet Lacy's pitch, and K.O. shows up to drive the knife in deeper. Apparently, he's quit his old job out of respect for Katy and he's looking for a new bouncer gig. The only one who comes out of that club unscathed — besides Pepper obvs — is Josie, who manages to hand Xandra her ass in the ladies' room while still being a class act.
Alyssa: Listen, insecurity can be insidious, but I am a little annoyed that Jorge's problem this episode is "my boyfriend is too hot." I understand that this is a modern fairy tale, but come on. He and Bernie get to stretch their acting muscles a bit, though, when Pepper needs a hand. Shockingly, her landlady isn't cool with her using her rented space to shoot a porno (you are never getting that security deposit back, girl), so Pepper rolls in and talks her down while Jorge and Bernie pretend to be officers of the law. Are your friends really your friends unless they're willing to impersonate a cop for you?
Jessica: Answer: No. Look, if Jorge needed assurance that Bernie really liked him, this should be more than enough. The man is a New York City firefighter. He could get in big trouble for breaking up this porno disturbance the way he did. Jorge, just enjoy the hunky devotion for a bit, my friend. Everyone convenes for the worst-looking slice of NY pizza I've ever seen after the nights' festivities. Katy's trying to sober up, Josie's fielding calls from Alex's dad asking to meet with her, Pepper is fine because when is she not, and Jorge's down in the dumps about Bernie. Guy chooses this time to walk by, prompting Katy to accost him at his car, and the two head to Lacy's so she can make one final heartfelt pitch while everyone else just … heads home? I'm sorry, uber-successful designer or not, I don't know if I'd be cool with my drunk friend hopping into some random's town car that late at night. But this is fantasy New York, so everything is on the up and up and Katy takes Guy to her home away from home for some sweet reminiscing about, who else, K.O.
Wild Nights at Lacy's
Alyssa: Yeah, no, letting friends get into random cars late at night is definitely breaking the Girl Code. Also, Katy spends a lot of time in Lacy's after hours, right? Is this allowed? Like, we know that she's not casing the joint for a heist or getting light-fingered with the merchandise, but does Lacy's management? Regardless, Guy finds her methods charming as they reminisce over the first time that fashion meant anything to them. With Guy's resolve softening, Katy promises him the entire 8th floor to create his line exclusively for the department store, which is definitely above her pay grade.
Jessica: Katy, I know your mom used to take you here all the time as a little girl but you don't own the place, sweetie. You can't just promise entire floors to whomever you please. Still, the dream of having his own section in Lacy's is enough to convince Guy to sell there exclusively and it seems like he might be the random hookup her friends pushed for right up until Katy vomits in her sparkly purse, and on her sparkly dress. Which is how she ends up asleep in a storefront window in Guy's coat and her underwear. I have to say, I'm kind of disturbed he just left her there. She came out of the bathroom and he had just bailed? What if she was really sick, or too inebriated to get home? The case for Guy secretly being Satan is growing stronger by the minute.
Alyssa: Yeah, that was a dick move on his part. But Katy, for real, learn how to set an alarm on your phone. Gloria finds her snoozing in the window display and is justifiably upset, but all that goes away when Mrs. Lacy calls them up to her office. Sure, she begins with a reprimand, but it comes out that Guy has decided to partner with Lacy's after all. Gloria puts in a good word for Katy and proposes a compromise that gives Guy the eighth floor like he wants and Katy gets to look like a hero and keep her job. Elsewhere, everyone else's drama is wrapped up in neat little bows. Pepper makes out with the man making the porno, Jorge works through his issues with Bernie and his dad, and Mr. Cabot tells Josie that he wants to finance her EP as long as she can keep Alex on the straight and narrow. Plus, Katy is sketching and sewing again. She talks about how she's finally getting over KO and is back to being herself again, but honestly, it's been a week. Let's keep it all in perspective, Katy. She's also making heart eyes at Guy, so I think she might have the romantic attention span of a goldfish.
Jessica: Again, I feel like the swamp witch cursing small children and stewing in my own bitterness but can things just go to hell on this show? Just once? There aren't any real stakes because we know everything's going to come up daisies in the end. Even Pepper, who owes tens of thousands of dollars to people and may be operating under a false identity, is skirting past all her problems. I don't like to wish suffering on others but someone needs to go THROUGH it before I begin to really start questioning how depressingly unlucky my own life is.
Alyssa: It's true. While I appreciate some sunny optimism in a television landscape that can often feel aggressively gloom and doom, Katy Keene just feels a bit too neat and tidy. You can't just have some offscreen rats and expect us to believe that this is a New York that is at all feasible. Plus, you will never convince me that fashion-forward New Yorkers would be so against wearing black. I know this is a weird thing to harp on, but it will honestly haunt me for the rest of the day.