The Secret Life of the American Teenager Review: "Sweet and Sour"
If you get a girl pregnant, I think you should give her a gift, even if it’s worth more than the baby.
Despite the ridiculous writing in this week’s episode, (see below for sampler, The Secret Life’s “Sweet and Sour” actually made a few decent points. We see Ricky go to therapy and question important issues; we see Ben’s testicles descend a tiny bit; and, for once, we get a lesson about teenage worries other than pregnancy.
Of course, there’s the fair share of stupid things that no one cares about, such as Madison and Lauren getting sent to summer school as a punishment. Everyone finally realizes they forgot Amy’s birthday, but knowing these selfish clowns no one will make up for it. And, naturally, the absurd amount of Betty (aka Stifler’s mom) one-liners that almost made me choke.
Now, onto the good stuff... Ricky finally makes it to therapy this week and the doctor wastes no time dancing around what happened. He slept with some girl because he found out Amy was at a club and wanted to get revenge. He says that he just needs sex, but the therapist asks if he uses sex as a substitute for needing to feel loved. Ricky seems doubtful, but I think for once that the show is tapping into a true issue.
While I know most boys Ricky’s age are horn dogs, I do think he has abandonment issues due to his childhood. It’s also the reason he has a lot of casual sex; he doesn’t want to form attachments. Somehow he is able to turn down a desperate blonde slut later in the episode. Such a proud moment.
[Photo: ABC Family]
Adrian is thinking of someone other than herself for once when she rushes to the hospital because she thinks something is wrong with the baby. The doctor (guest star Nick Zano) assures her that everything is fine, but not before making many inappropriate comments to Ben. There’s something called doctor/patient confidentiality. It exists in real life, but not in the world of Secret Life.
The new doctor shouldn’t be gossiping with her other doctor about baby daddy issues. He’s there for health reasons and health reasons only. The situation does not grant him cart blanche to tell Ben what a loser he basically is. I may call Ben a loser but I can say that as I’m an opinionated writer and not a pre-natal care physician.
Ben is jealous of Adrian’s obvious attraction to the doctor so gives her a ring. When she finds out that it’s Betty’s and comments on how Betty got it, Ben points out that it’s basically the same reason he’s giving it to her. Ben calls his baby momma a whore.
He later realizes what a colossal moron he’s been and goes to apologize to Adrian. Dare I say I was proud of him in this moment for realizing he was acting immature and irresponsible? What transpires is a heartfelt moment where Ben and Adrian decide they want to get to know each other for the sake of the baby.
I give the kids on this show a lot of crap for being so immature, probably because I forgot what it’s like to be their age. Granted they are sometimes ridiculous, but teenagers are teenagers. My real gripe is the reality factor.
For a show that never discusses anything except that sex ruins a girl and will knock her up instantly, this week it finally shed some light on some other very real issues. Yes, oral sex is a good way to avoid pregnancy while still getting to indulge in sexual behaviors.
However, as Grace’s mom points out, it’s a very easy way to contract STIs or STDs. Both of those statistics are rapidly on the rise and something that Hampton’s writers needed to address for once.
Teenagers will do what they want and people might as well accept that. What they need is for someone to show them there are lots of options and lots of ways to be safe no matter what they choose to indulge in. And now I sound like a PSA. Looking forward to next week where there are sure to be lots of Amy and Ricky scenes now that she’s returned from New York.
The Secret Life of the American Teenager: "Sweet and Sour"
Leigh Raines is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.