[WARNING: THIS EPISODE REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS]
I had to watch Heart Like Mine twice, because I was torn on how I felt about this episode the first time around. I’m sure many people will disagree, but I thought this episode was pretty average, mainly because I felt it wasn’t ________ enough:
*KC and Jenna finally getting together wasn’t interesting enough.
*Coach Carson was creepy, but not creepy enough.
*The gun scene was intense, but not intense enough.
Everyone knew that KC and Clare would break up in this episode, leaving the door open for KC and Jenna to get together. Now Clare has always been labeled as a *stiff* girl who needs to lighten up, but her attitude in this episode was completely justified given the fact Jenna’s been trying to get with KC since day one.
Then once KC and Jenna got together at the sports banquet, it felt anticlimactic. Even when the two were making out in Coach’s hotel room I wasn’t feeling it. Maybe it’s because I’m not totally convinced we’ve seen the last of the KC/Clare relationship.
And speaking of Coach, his level of creepiness was steady throughout the episode, but at the same time it wasn’t as high as I expected it to be. His actions (getting KC drunk and watching porn with him, showing KC his gun, and hiring a hooker for KC) made him look more like a perverted loser than anything. I get that the point of the plot was that Coach Carson is an adult KC could FINALLY say he had a bond with, and then Coach would break that trust with his irresponsibility…but maybe I was looking for an awkwardness within the relationship that would make KC afraid of Coach instead of being disgusted and angry with him.
The most intense scene in Heart Like Mine also ended up being the most disappointing as well. I wasn’t sure where things were going at the end when KC took the gun out of Coach’s car, but when KC ran into Clare in the hallway with the gun in his bag, my heart stopped. I instantly had flashbacks to Season 4’s Time Stand Still,as well as the old Degrassi High episode Showtime, in which one of the characters killed himself with a gun in the Degrassi washroom.
Of course all the intensity was drained when KC didn’t hurt himself, didn’t confront Coach with the gun and only ended up showing it to Ms. Hatzilakos to get Coach arrested. In the end it felt like there were so many routes this episode could’ve taken and there were so many emotions to play with, but they decided to play it safe.
My initial grade for Heart Like Mine was a C. It wasn’t a bad episode by any means, it just didn’t grab me like most of the other episodes in Season 9 have. However, the fact there was a hooker in this episode (which makes me LOL thinking about it) and Sam Earle’s acting was AMAZING in the final five minutes, it gets a little bit of a boost.
“HEART LIKE MINE” MAIN PLOT GRADE: C+
Marco returns to Degrassi, but this time he’s a student teacher. It’s been a while since we’ve seen Marco, and while it’s good to see him get a storyline that DOESN’T involve his sexuality or him whining in general, it was still mediocre at best.
Basically he learns that he needs to be the students’ teacher and not their friend when Holly J tries to get him to give her and Declan extensions for their paper. As much as I’m loving Holly J these days, isn’t she kind of OOC in this plot? She’s the studious, organized, intelligent girl in charge of everything and she’s suddenly trying to slack off on work?
Yawn. Apparently Adamo Ruggiero is trying to land himself a future gig if what he’s doing right now (wearing fancy hats and eating cheetos with Lauren Collins) doesn’t work out and there’s a Degrassi The Next NEXT Generation.
“HEART LIKE MINE” SUBPLOT A GRADE: D+
There’s something not quite right about Declan and Fiona…they were thrown into a lame subplot. Declan’s found himself involved in activities at Degrassi, while Fiona is still a loner. She decides to audition for the school musical, and Declan (who’s in charge of casting) gives her the part despite her not being able to sing…at all.
What? Someone at Degrassi who doesn’t have some sort of musical talent? This plot seemed like more of a way to give the new kids some screen time, especially Annie Clark, who needs to work a bit more on not delivering Fiona’s lines so awkwardly.
When Sav, of all people, delivers the subplot’s funniest line (Jane’s Aunt) and the highlight of it is Anya casually referencing LARPing (which made me stoked to see that Degrassi IS committed to continuity this season), you know you’re in trouble.
“HEART LIKE MINE” SUBPLOT B GRADE: D+