Kolleen: Last night when I got home from my Friday Funday, I was too jazzed up to sleep, so as Jeff (my husband) tried to sleep beside me I laid in bed watching this episode of DNG. Every two seconds I stopped the show to ask, out loud, if he thought Drake ever sat alone in his mansion at night, remembering the dark time when he was Aubrey Graham, aka Jimmy from Degrassi. Did he remember having to practice being Romeo to Paige’s Juliet? Did he remember being embarrassed to buy condoms? I feel like Degrassi is Drake’s “Rosebud”, and it will be the last word to leave his dying lips.
Anyway, strap on your strap-ons or chastity belts or whatever you kids are doing these days, and get ready, because this episode is about SEX. Actual teen-on-teen sex. The episode opens with Ashley and Terri gushing over this ugly-ass J&A silver plated necklace that Ashley bought Jimmy for their upcoming anniversary. Masculine yet romantic, like Jimmy– that’s Terri’s description of this item that was so obviously purchased at Canada’s version of K-Mart.
Miss Quan informs the class that they will be rehearsing scenes from Romeo and Juliet— with the lines MEMORIZED people. This is a lot of pressure on 8th graders IMHO. Romeo and Juliet may be the easiest of the Shakespeare plays, but MEMORIZED? Terri is cast as Balthasar which I think is SUPER RUDE. Jimmy is Romeo (natch). But wait… Ashley isn’t Juliet?! She’s… the NURSE?! Omg…that doesn’t mean…. YUP, PAIGE IS GODDAMNED JULIET. We all know she’s a boy-stealer. This is a nightmare.
In computer class, JT informs “the Tobester” that Dr. Sally– Canada’s version of that old slutbag Dr. Ruth– is speaking to the 8th graders today. “She gets graphic, as in…pornographic” laments JT. I’m no homophobe, but I feel increasingly uncomfortable with JT getting all pants-tenty while standing over Tobester’s shoulder.
The class is told they’re going to be working on projects about “an animal of their choice”, and Emma, ever the over-achiever, asks if she can do one on a specific animal– “Mama Onu”, an endangered turtle. Toby is so inspired her stares at Emma with a dumb look on his face as he has a vision of Venus incarnate floating towards him while some weird club music plays.
Oh look, now it’s Dr. Sally. She’s at least 107 years old. I know when I wanted to learn about how to put a condom on a banana I asked my geriatric old great-grandmother. Did you know that when a male is aroused his penis fills with blood and he gets an erection? I’m so excited that Canada is so pro- safe sex. Here in America we have states that teach abstinence only and every one of those states has 11 year olds with children. Not Canada! My only wish is that Dr. Sally explained why you leave a tip at the end of the condom– I just really wanted her to say “to catch the force of the ejaculate”, which to me are the seven most beautiful words in the English language. Spinner blows up Jimmy’s spot by asking Dr. Sally about his friend who is totally serious with his GF. I’m talking EIGHT MONTHS–
(Stop. Stop. Eight months? Who buys silver plated jewelry for an 8- month anniversary? Once my friend asked me what he should get his GF for their one month anniversary and I laughed in his face. He was in college. Anniversary means annual, as in yearly, people. )
— and Spinner wants to know when they’ll know they’re ready. Anatomically, they’re ready. Emotionally, who knows? This is the sage advice of a doddering old fool. Paige appreciates her bluntness of course: “We’re not all going to wait until marriage.” What a hussy! She insinuates that Ashley and Jimmy should be knockin’ boots all night long already, then she berates the gift Jimmy made Ashley, which in my opinion is pretty cute for an 8th grade guy. Why are they even talking to this bitch?
In the cafeteria, Spinner is really impressed with the statutory rape that is Romeo and Juliet, then Paige comes to say hi to Jimmy and they all slut- shame her because there is a rumor she did it with a camp counselor last summer. Then Jimmy reminds them that he already has a girlfriend, and Spinner makes an analogy about ten-cent fries and only one person is selling fries and he really wants fries, which is supposed to be about slutty Paige versus prudish Ashley but really I believe it to be some sort of stoner- rambling. We see Liberty doing her best Urkel imitation, begging JT to let her help him with his schoolwork, but he shoots her down, saying he’s happy with his straight- Ds. He’s truly the Canadian Bart Simpson. Toby tells Emma she inspired him into learning more about turtles, and asks her to watch a DVD about endangered animals. Manny offers to let everyone watch it at her place since her parents are monsters and she isn’t allowed out on school nights. To Tobe’s chagrin, they invite Sean. He notices Toby’s pathetic whimpering and says he has other plans. What a pal.
Jimmy and Paige are rehearsing and Paige lays one on Jimmy. Jimmy (Drake) is one smooth-ass Romeo. No wonder women everywhere are tattooing his name on their foreheads. Ashley is PISSED and calls Paige a backstabber. Paige reminds her that they are studying Romeo and Juliet, NOT Julius Caesar. AND ASHLEY DOESN’T GET THE REFERENCE. I died a little at this moment. Ashley, girl, don’t let this skank prove she’s smarter than you. Ashley knows what she needs to do– she needs to have sex with Jimmy, because that’s the only way a girl can keep a guy. Ashley tells Jimmy to come over tonight– she’s ready.
Spinner suggests Jimmy buys some condoms as a gift to Jimmy Jr (HIS PENIS). Ashley goes home and orders some condoms online. Terri asks Ashley if she’s really ready, and Ashley tells her to stuff it because she’s never even had a date. Ordering condoms online is serious business and sometimes it causes you to be a total bitch to your bestie. How quick is this shipping by the way? It’s like 7 hour shipping. She has the condoms later that day.
Emma has trouble finding info on endangered animals on the internet (uh…) and Toby saves the day by typing in “endangered animals” into the search engine. Wow, Emma, you are just not as technologically advanced as the Tobes. This scene is so stupid and ends with Toby having another wet dream over Emma. They are heading over to Manny’s to watch the DVD when Liberty, ever annoying, reminds her that she was going to help proof the newspaper or some shit. IT’S IN LIBERTY’S PALM PILOT SO IT HAS TO HAPPEN. Also Emma is wearing these pants:
Ugh Liberty, I hate you. Emma promises Toby she’ll be there in an hour. The next scene with Libs and Ems shows them having THE WORST conversation in the history of teen television. Here it is, but really, you have to hear how disinterested they are in reciting these lines. It’s like the worst school play in history:
Liberty: You’re sure my editorial on school fountain’s bacteria breeders isn’t too long?
Liberty: Great. Hey on the way home wanna grab a smoothie?
Emma: Um actually I forgot.
Liberty: Forgot what? Not something for the paper I hope.
Emma: No, Sean asked me to help him after school. I’ve got to run.
Liberty: Okay see you tomorrow then! Or as they say in Italy, a domani.
Emma makes Sean feel like an asshole for writing about Springer Spaniels, which are HARDLY on the endangered list. Sean reminisces about his dog, Charlie, and how much he misses him. Emma feels nothing but tenderness for this stupid oaf of a hottie, and she forgets all about her actual friends. Toby is heartbroken.
Ashley goes home and is so anxious that her mom is home that she makes it totes obvious that something is up. Her mom doesn’t seem to care that she wants her out or is getting weird A++ superfast shipping packages in the mail. Jimmy and Spinner get humiliated buying condoms at the drugstore– way to make teen sex even more daunting, store- clerk.After some awkward sitting there and shitty looking making out, Ashley sits in the hall, telling herself to grow up. She can do this. It’s like that scene in American Beauty but without the punching oneself in the face. Finally Ashley admits she can’t do it– she’s not Paige. Relieved, Jimmy says he can’t do it either. They’re just not ready. Toby comes home to find them blowing up condoms like balloons, which makes my palms itch just thinking about because I am extremely allergic to latex. Oh and don’t worry– he LOVED the necklace.
The next day Manny tells Emma that Toby is totally in love with her, and Jimmy tells Spinner that they didn’t seal the deal and blamed it on Toby coming home. Ashley apologizes to Terri and when Terri asks if Jimmy was upset about her not cashing in the V-card Ashley says, “No, he was cool about it.” AND THEN THE EPISODE JUST ENDS. It’s really bizarre.
Man, this episode took a lot out of me. I don’t remember being so anxious about sex. I’m glad being a teen girl was so much easier for me. It’s probably because I’m American.
Letty: Ugh, what a weird episode. Poor Tobes. He will never be as cool as Sean, even if he gets THREE earrings. I am sorry you are allergic to latex. When I was in middle school there was this girl named Emily that was allergic to latex and I used to call her “Allergic to Latex Girl” because I am creative like that.