AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE Review: “Surprise”

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is full of #FirstWorldProblems.  Tuesday’s episode is the crème de la crème of them.

Oliver (Daniel DiMaggio) compares himself to all the other kids at school, like we all did when we were his age. But when it comes to his home, he goes all “home-dysmorphic” on us.  He believes that his family is poor because all the other kids have garages the size of his home in the posh Westport, CT.  He legit thinks that it’s proper to use the word “poor”, which is crazy.  I mean, he is a kid, so I have to give him some slack on that. But then again, he’s in business with a neighborhood housekeeper.  I can only imagine what he thinks her living situation might be like.

Katie (Katy Mixon) tries to teach Oliver a lesson: they are not poor. They’re modest (ha!), and it’s always better to be honest about who you are.  To prove this point, Katie does something that Oliver despises. She surprises him with a birthday party. All of his rich kid friends are there, including a rich girl he’s so in love with.  To a 12-year-old, this is the time to curl up and die.  He’s been in hiding about his poor life, and now, all kids are there to see it. So what does he do? He makes up a story that his mom and dad are covering as poor people because their actual wealth is astounding. (Poor Oliver)

AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE - "Surprise" - Oliver tells his parents that he's so embarrassed by their modest house that he'd rather not have a birthday party at all. Katie decides to teach him a lesson by ambushing him with a surprise party at home with all his wealthy friends, on "American Housewife," airing TUESDAY, JANUARY 17 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EST), on the ABC Television Network. (ABC/Kelsey McNeal) ISABEL GRAVITT

As the birthday party goes on, Katie announces that all kids will participate in an Escape Room challenge, an activity that locks them in the basement and will only allow them out once they’ve solved several riddles.  This part of the story is only interesting because Taylor (Meg Donnelly) has a new beau, and they get locked in the basement together.

Remember your teenage years?  Getting locked in a small space with your beau for a reason your parents gave was music to your ears. It rarely happens, so Taylor is one privileged kid.  The new beau came on the scene as a tutor, but he’s a cutie pie. So how can Taylor resist?  And of course, his mother is someone that Katie dislikes.  Let me rephrase.  His mother is someone Katie can’t stand.  Geez, this woman is all about the no-new-friends life.  We don’t know the backstory of these two, but I don’t need one.  Katie is just McPetty all day, so maybe this lady did something shady and Katie wrote her off for eternity.

AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE - "Surprise" - Oliver tells his parents that he's so embarrassed by their modest house that he'd rather not have a birthday party at all. Katie decides to teach him a lesson by ambushing him with a surprise party at home with all his wealthy friends, on "American Housewife," airing TUESDAY, JANUARY 17 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EST), on the ABC Television Network. (ABC/Kelsey McNeal) MEG DONNELLY, AMARR M. WOOTEN

I’m sure the beau will return (I hope so).  He and Taylor are just so adorable.

Getting back to Oliver’s lies…His dad (Diedrich Bader) joins in.  He gets pissed because Katie called the landlord to fix the basement door when he “passionately” asked her not to.  So, he lies to little kids about having a ton of money.  He is McPetty as well (and kinda sad).

After Oliver’s crush tells him that she’s OK with him being poor, he feels better about himself.  His Cheshire cat smile is adorable.  Don’t think those will be making many appearances unless she is around.

There are several things to note in this episode.  Katie is right.  Being honest about who you are or what you have (to a certain extent) allows you freedom to get what you want (case in point: crush likes Oliver). It is good to listen to your parents about getting a tutor when your grades slip (case in point: Taylor gets a new beau).  And when you do lie, it threatens your livelihood (case in point: Greg might get higher rent because the landlord overheard his lies).

AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE - "Surprise" - Oliver tells his parents that he's so embarrassed by their modest house that he'd rather not have a birthday party at all. Katie decides to teach him a lesson by ambushing him with a surprise party at home with all his wealthy friends, on "American Housewife," airing TUESDAY, JANUARY 17 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EST), on the ABC Television Network. (ABC/Kelsey McNeal) DIEDRICH BADER, LOGAN PEPPER, MILES ELLIOT

I must admit Katie is always right.  What am I turning into?

TB-TV-Grade-A-

Season 1, Episode 12 (S01E12)
American Housewife airs Tuesday at 830PM on ABC

Read all of our reviews of American Housewife here. 
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Jennifer spends her nights writing, her days securing insurance for TV shows, and her in-betweens blogging about the silliness and seriousness of life on her blog.
Follow Jennifer on Twitter: @reneseford
Keep up with all of Jennifer’s reviews here.

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Still quiet here.sas

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