Episode 2 of Season 2 of The Lying Game saw the corruptive quicksand of the game itself turn into straight up air. Basically, these liars are in free-fall, and sooner or later, someone is going splat. “Cheat, Play, Love” built new love triangles, revealed startling new secrets, and saw poor Ethan Whitehorse continue the downward spiral into sad but silly drunkard. You too, Mads, you too. This is like Bad Girls Club with rich people!
The episode opened with Rebecca (Charisma Carpenter) explaining to Sutton (Alexandra Chando) that new kid on the block, Jordan (Ryan Rottman) is actually her stepson, as opposed to her biological son. There are so many twisted and complicated parent/ child relationships on this show! Who’s not related?! Meanwhile, Emma and Thayer (Christian Alexander) were out for one of their signature running sessions. Running while discussing makes all of their clue digging and mystery solving seem utterly exhausting. Sutton showed up out of the blue to ask Emma for her blessing to date Ethan.
Back at the ranch, Emma attempted to coerce Kristin (Helen Slater) to attend couples therapy with Ted (Andy Buckley). This raised some eyebrows because Sutton, of course, loathes the idea of therapy. Emma changed “Sutton’s” mind.
At school, Laurel (Allie Gonino) ran into new boy Jordan and got all giddy. Then Mads (Alice Greczyn) showed up to rain all over the sunny non-lying parade grand marshal that is Laurel. It was then that she discovered Jordan was Rebecca’s stepson, a.k.a. her barely sort-of-stepbrother. Poor Laurel is still in the dark, but the repercussions of these other kids juggling cracking a murder case, while finding Emma’s birth mother, while maintaining their status as party animals never fail to blow up in her pretty little face. Why don’t they just tell her already? When they got a little one-on-one time, Mads admitted to being somewhat appropriately skeeved out by the fact that she hooked up with her stepbrother. Also, Mads was troubled right off the bat, as she was summoned to meet with her father alone. Alec (Adrian Pasdar) had a hunch that someone planted the murder weapon on him.
Ethan (Blair Redford) was studying (yes, studying) when Sutton showed up at his trailer. Helping the twins with their quest has taken its toll on Ethan’s grades, and if he fails he could be heading back to juvenile hall. Jordan was a little perplexed to show up and see Sutton with Ethan, assuming they were still broken up. Ethan and Jordan became fast bros this episode. Later, Sutton pool-crashed at Jordan’s place, claiming to be trying to win Ethan back. Jordan had previously seen Ethan checking out Emma from a distance, so he made sure to let Sutton know that she had him in the bag. Sorry, Sutton! Meanwhile, Rebecca was in the house planning a party to celebrate Jordan’s big move. Her one request; invite Laurel Mercer to perform personally. Rebecca’s plan was to manipulate Ted into chaperoning with her by convincing him to come watch Laurel’s band play. Ted reluctantly agreed.
No one thought to fill Mads in on the fact that they were sneaking off to visit her father in jail. Emma liked the idea of Mads taking a swing at digging for dirt, although Thayer wasn’t about it. Mads was set on finding answers as to why they shouldn’t trust Sutton. Kristin and Ted both gave Mads their approval. While advising Mads, the duo came face to face, and Kristin agreed to try therapy.
Allegedly, Sutton bought a paper for Ethan to hand in as his own. At first, Whitehorse declined her offer, only to have her slip the plagiarized work in his jean back pocket. Emma watched from afar, horrified to discover that Sutton could be corrupting her ex. Between the buses, the twins butted heads yet again. Ethan’s academic integrity became just another game; who knows Ethan best? Inside the school, Laurel bumped into Jordan plastering the walls with a digital barcode linked to his party invite. Yes, he seriously did that. Laurel scanned the invite with her smartphone, only to realize that she was the entertainment. Not that she cared, though. Jordan, who’d apparently already become super popular, had worked his charm sufficiently.
So, Ethan cheated. Bummer, Emma! According to Ethan, he was just embracing the dark side she accused him of having after he slipped up and kissed her twin. I think he just got lazy. The twist of the knife came when Ethan’s teacher called both he and Emma into his classroom to use Emma as a gauge for Ethan’s credibility as a student. Basically, he knew Ethan cheated. He’d previously falsely accused Emma of cheating, so it was up to her to call Ethan out. She didn’t , but she hated herself for it. She was livid.
Sutton and Rebecca talked Ted and Kristin, and we caught our first glimpse of Sutton realizing that Rebecca is a little… off? Yeah, she’s a little nuts. Sutton screwed up and dared to refer to Kristin as “Mom,” only to have Rebecca shoot her a chilling Medusa stare. Sutton’s part demon, though, so she didn’t turn to stone or anything.
Alec worked his spell on Mads when she eventually showed up for her solo visit. Pleading with her that he was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and that he is working towards protecting the twins and their secret, Mads lapped up her father’s excuses without even really questioning. Also, Alec either thought up the perfect means to remove himself from the whole “Derrick drove into the lake” situation, or he genuinely knew nothing surrounding the accident. I’m not sure if I believe Alec or not, honestly. He’s finally questioning Rebecca, though.
Meanwhile, Theresa (Yara Martinez) and Dan (Tyler Christopher) discovered a new set of prints on the murder weapon’s bag leading them to a waitress. Later that night, the dynamic duo tracked the woman down. When she attempted to run, Dan really manhandled her to the ground. Yikes. As it turned out, she was paid to simply move the weapon from the location to Alec’s golf bag. The entire deal was anonymous and over the phone. It was a man’s voice, apparently. Does that rule out Rebecca? Now, the real question is whether or not Alec framed himself! I mean, he did suggest that they scan for prints in the first place.
Ted and Kristin attempted couples counseling. Things moved swiftly. Basically, Kristin didn’t give a crap about any of Ted’s excuses or begging for forgiveness. All she wanted was for him to promise that all of his secrets were exposed. Guess what, guys? Ted lied.
Jordan rocked some lilac jeans at his party! Laurel arrived early to check out her stage and was quick to shoot down Rebecca when she attempted to pry into her family’s personal business. Laurel’s the best! Although, sometimes I theorize that it’s Laurel Rebecca is after. Who knows, maybe somehow they used Rebecca as an egg donor unbeknownst to Kristin. That would be a nightmare, but we do know they were undergoing loads of fertility procedures. Who knows?
Mads arrived next. I was going to say that she looked a like hot honeyed wreck, but Laurel put it best with her Courtney Love reference. Mads was in pretty bad shape in the aftermath of her one-on-one with Alec.
Jordan supported Ethan in the battle for “Sutton.” Thayer, brother or otherwise, is too much of a buzzkill for him. Mads wasn’t feeling Thayer at the party, either. Having been charmed by her father, Mads started her first round of drunken debauchery by blaming Thayer for brainwashing her into condemning their dad. “He’s not your real father!” Whoa, that was way out of left field. Thayer confided in Emma, of course. His mother left his birth father and ended up with Alec. Afterwards, she rekindled the flame with his biological father and offered the chance for Thayer to move away with them. He chose Mads and Alec, but has felt resentment ever since. Yeah, suddenly Thayer isn’t looking so protected by Alec, right? Mads cried to Jordan, who did a decent job of consoling her. Uncomfortable with their fling, the two agreed to be friends. Eh, let’s see how long that’ll last. This show loves ruining Laurel’s good time.
Silly drunkard Ethan blamed Thayer’s storming out on a spat with Emma, clueless as to what Mads had blurted out. Emma delivered the perfect line with, “you and Sutton are perfect for one another!” Ouch, on this show that’s like damning him to Hell. Ethan wasn’t done yet, though. Taunting Emma back with a “go lose ‘it’ to Thayer now” line. That was a massive misstep, Whitehorse.
Jordan complimented Laurel’s emotional connection to her material, even realizing which song she’d written just by the look in her eyes. Hey, they’re always looking for a new judge on American Idol, dude. Sloshed Ethan tried to compliment Laurel, too. “Good fiddle work.” Yeah, you know what, it was!
Ted showed up at Rebecca’s to witness the catastrophic aftermath of a high school party and to further warn Rebecca to back the hell off. Meanwhile, Laurel and Kristin ate “amazeballs” (their word, I would never say that. Please, don’t stop reading.) ice cream and talked about their “amazeballs” (Still not me talking.) night. In the bedroom, Mads and Emma had girl-talk and discussed how Mads slipped up and boinked her stepbro. Okay, I didn’t realize it went that far. Emma’s face said it all.
Then, Laurel crashed the party, beaming with excitement over having met the guy of her dreams, Jordan, without even realizing that Mads had already tapped that. Sloppy seconds, and the guy had only been in town for like a night. Sorry, Laurel. By the way, with all of these lying ladies in town, and most of them in and out of this house, this is looking a lot like Bad Girls Club.
The episode closed with Jordan driving a drunken Ethan to the cabin, only to gawk in horror as he saw his new bro (As in buddy, not actual brother. That’s Thayer.) pursue a booty call with Sutton.
What did you all think of Season 2 Episode 2 of The Lying Game, ”Cheat, Play, Love.” Are you hoping Jordan works things out with Mads or pursues Laurel? Did that final scene between Thayer and Emma seal the deal for you? Will Sutton turn on crazy Rebecca? How can Ted get out of this one?
Thanks for reading my Recap and Review of “Cheat, Play, Love,” Season 2 Episode 2 of The Lying Game!