Sunday, April 29, 2007

BROTHERS & SISTERS: The New Kid On The Block

New characters on a show always throw me for a loop. Most of the time, I enjoy their addition to my TV families and bask in the rays of a new adventure that involves figuring out who these people are and how they're going to make my show even better. The addition of Desmond on Lost or Addison on Grey's (although I loathed her deeply at first.) is a good example of such situations. Other times, though, I find myself face to face with people like Lauren Reed, Rachel Gibson or Thomas Grace - all of whom jumped into my Alias world uninvited (at least by me.), and while the latter two additions really only annoyed me because they lacked any definable purpose or plot, the former of the three succeeded in ruining everything that was once good and perfect about that show. She is undeniable proof that sometimes - just sometimes - a new character can be your worst nightmare.

So you can imagine my extreme levels of anxiety when it became clear that the illegitimate Walker child was going to be joining in the Sunday night fun with me, Kitty, Rob Lowe and the gang. I wasn't really sure what to make of her, but I must say that Sarah's Oscar-worthy performance in the role of "Self-Righteous Bitch" really did help me out in deciding whether or not to like Rebecca. Sarah has been nothing if not a pain in the ass and an outright bitch lately, so it was easy for me to sympathize with Rebecca. As she grew closer to Justin, I liked her more. Then Nora started taking her in as one of her own, and Sarah even made an effort to reach out to her and be a real sister. Kitty's stubborn nature left her out as the only one in the family still refusing to be nice to Rebecca, and thus I liked Becca even more because I felt sorry for her. She didn't deserve to be treated like a piece of trash just because William Walker was a skeezbag - and a skeezbag she never even knew was her father, no less.

Pretty much by the middle of the last episode (the one with all the games and the cool Dharma and Greg crossover!), I was completely on Rebecca's side. But I also knew that she was really good at being a bad girl, as was so nicely displayed in the episode where she and Justin went to a party and not-so-innocent Becca showed everyone what it's like to play with drugs. With that in the back of my head (as well as a tip-off from the Promo Monkey about something happening with her and Joe), I immediately perked up and paid attention when she found Joe on the back patio and they started befriending one another.

I may have already decided to like the girl, but if TV has taught me nothing it has certainly taught me this: "Trust no one." and "Everybody lies." Hell, I spent year after year trying to figure out if SpyDaddy, SpyMommy and Sloane were EVER worth trusting! Just when you think someone's good, they turn around and steal a Rambaldi artifact or kill your sister! How can one not be skeptical after spending so much time with characters like that?

So when Justin came running to her side after a quick cut-away from a tense moment between her and Joe, I really didn't know what was about to happen. I was still on her side, still believing that she was good. A huge part me thought she was going to say he effing raped her, but maybe that's just because I'm overwhelmingly cynical and pessimistic. Still, when she said he kissed her... you just knew one of two things was happening - either she's telling the truth and he really is a jackoff, or she's lying and trying to stir up some Walker family drama; perhaps in the hopes of hurting Sarah since she was such a bitch in the beginning.

Ever since that episode (and that moment) aired, the conspiracy theorists in different magazines and TV columns have been running rampant. Either Rebecca is a lying witch, or Joe is one hell of a skeezbag bastard. People are taking sides, and a lot of people seem to think Rebecca is lying. I think this is just because they don't know her well, and they're ganging up on the new kid.

Me, personally? I think Joe is a skeez. I can't really explain it in words, but there is just something about Rebecca that makes it hard for me to believe that she would lie about something like that. Despite what they've put her through and how deeply her life has been uprooted, I believe she truly does care about the Walkers and what they think. It seems to me that no matter how she tries to deny it, having them accept her as a part of their family is a very important thing for her. I find it hard to believe that she would purposely jeopardize that - especially when it comes to Sarah's husband. Sarah isn't my favorite person, and certainly was never Becca's either, but she was also the first one to truly change her ways and make a solid, sisterly effort with Rebecca. The idea of Becca making the whole "he kissed me" story up is just something that I don't buy.

What I do buy, however, is the idea that Joe may be a skeez. Again, I can't really explain it, but there's just something about him that makes it seem like an easy jump from "loving husband" to "skeezbag bastard." If the red flags weren't going off when he was hanging out with that mom of Paige's friend, they definitely were waving wildly during the therapy sessions that he and Sarah went to not long ago. The man just weirds me out. Sometimes he's so sweet and funny and I adore him, but there are those rare occassions when he simply freaks me out.

The answer to what really happened isn't far away at all, as today is Sunday and I've only a few more hours until it airs. But I spent the last week and a half debating with myself and trying to decide what I thought was going on. I never really believed that Rebecca would make it up, but reading all of those conspiracy theories actually started to go to my head and make me question what I knew to be true: she would never lie about something like that, but he would totally be the kind of guy to do something like that.

Now I just hope Joe owns up to being a skeez and the Walker clan actually takes Rebecca's side for once. This could be a huge turning point in her relationship with the family, and I'd really love to see them all believe her and rally around her. In the grand scheme of new character additions, Rebecca Harper-Walker has quickly become one of my all time favorites.

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