Control (2)

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Out of control

The guests are leaving Cal's party, and Safari Brian hands Max a card, telling him to call tomorrow. What, they're not going home together? Bummer -- I want to see some of this alien sex Michael mentioned. Max winks at Brian, and then Cal comes up and tells Max to stay to discuss the pitch. "I've got something I want to throw at you," says Cal. Brian takes his leave, hops into a car with Foreshadowing, and speeds off into the night. Cal follows Max back into the house, closes the door, and then swings around and puts the power-hand into action, hurling Max halfway up the carpet-covered marble staircase. Max comes tumbling back down and turns to looks at Cal, who's channeling Joan Crawford-does-bad-sci-fi: constipated, demonic look on face, claw-like hand outstretched. Cal is justifiably furious that Max came into his home, taunted him in front of his friends, and threatened to expose him. Justifying himself, Max says, "I have a son," which, though that nugget excuses him from nothing in my mind, shuts Cal up. His little mental wheels whir, and he says, exasperated, "You made him with another alien hybrid." Max, getting all intense, explains that his hybrid-spawn is back on Antar, and in trouble; this, apparently, explains his need for the ship "and one of its pilots." Cal says the Air Force reassembled the ship, and it will never fly. Max insists that Cal is the only person that can get it to work; Cal grabs Max's neck in a stranglehold and says, "I told you I would kill you." Max, looking suddenly old, puffy, and generally Kevin Spacey-like, retorts, "You're gonna have to." So, Cal drops Max to the floor, raises his mighty hand, and directs a burst of explosive power toward…a large vase, which shatter and falls. Letdown! Max realizes that Cal can't kill him, that he's had so many chances but could never do the deed, because Cal is Max's protector. Flush with his new sense of power, Max tells Cal to get as mad as he wants, but he's not going anywhere until Cal helps him. Cal, seriously pissed, body-slams Max as he leaves the foyer, treating us to yet another close-up of Max, a determined look etched on his face.

Back at the Crashdown, Liz drops a plate of food with a big purple sparkly thing on it in front of a guy at the counter, and then she and Maria start gabbing about Isabel's marriage plans, ignoring all the other customers. Maria calls the wedding "a disaster of epic proportions," which I think also describes this episode pretty well. Maria says that Michael freaked out when he heard the news, and that Max will definitely go ballistic. "And who," she wonders, "is Jesse Ramirez?" Eunice walks in and sidles up to the girls, who both register caught-in-the-act-of-gossiping-about-your-daughter surprise. A chipper Eunice asks what's new. Maria says "nothing," and Liz looks really unhappy to be there; Eunice says she's looking for Michael, who still has her 9x13 casserole dish, which held a yummy treat that Isabel delivered for Max "weeks ago." Bitch wants her plate back, and asks Maria to relay the command to Michael. Then she moves in for the real reason for her drop-by, asking Liz how Max is doing. After Liz proffers a revealing and heartfelt "fine," Eunice asks for Max's new cell phone number, since he changed it when he moved out; she's left messages at Michael's but doesn't even know if he's still living there. Maria mouths something that I can't decipher, even with repeated replays. Eunice just wants to talk to her son, she says, to know that he's safe. "I'm sure you can understand that, can't you?" she says. I don't know, Eunice; you used some pretty big words in there, like "talk" and "son." You probably lost her. Liz takes a few seconds to process, then says, "I'm sorry but I can't help you." Maria looks uncomfortable; Eunice displays a just-smacked look of bewilderment and walks out, defeated.

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