I’ll never forget showrunner Sarah Glinski saying that they aim to get a reaction of out fans. It’s rare for a Degrassi episode to “hit me in the feels” like Hero vs. Villain did. This is one of those episodes where my jaw was on the floor the entire time, because the characters in this episode were so ruthless toward one another. Hero vs. Villain will be burned in my memory for a while.
Power Cheer vs. Degrassi Nudes
Simpson questions Power Cheer about Degrassi Nudes, and Zoë asks to speak at the assembly. The rest of the girls freak out on Zoë, but she tells them she’s going to give a speech about her sexual assault to throw Simpson off their scent. As Zoë finally forgives Zig for treating her like a victim, she receives a text from the Degrassi Nudes stalker threatening to release evidence before cheer finals. Zoë confronts Hunter assuming he’s the stalker, but he convinces her that he isn’t the one blackmailing the cheerleading squad. Zoë now believes Frankie is the one behind the messages.
Zoë asks Frankie to rejoin the team, and while Frankie gets undressed Zoë snaps a picture of Frankie topless. Zoë threatens to pin Degrassi Nudes on Frankie if she keeps sending the text messages, but Frankie insists she would never hurt anyone on the team. Zoë delivers her speech at the assembly, and afterward she decides to delete the photo of Frankie. At that point everyone in the gym, including Simpson, receives a message from the stalker outing the Power Cheer squad as the ones responsible for Degrassi Nudes.
QUICK REVIEW: An overwhelming majority of the time I either lean positively or are neutral toward Degrassi characters. In general, they’re good kids who make a bunch of stupid mistakes throughout their tenure on the show. However, Zoë Rivas has taken things to a whole new level. Her being sexually assaulted was horrible, and I understand her frustration as being constantly seen as a victim. But that doesn’t excuse all of her reckless and vindictive behavior since. We have legit villain on our hands, someone who’s willing to destroy anyone who stands in her way. She has to be the first major character on this show I actively want to see get crushed for what she’s done, and the fact Degrassi’s made me actually dislike Zoë as a person is impressive.
Clare vs. Drew and Eli
Clare finally tells Alli that Eli is the father of her baby, not Drew. Alli suggests Clare tell them both the truth now, but Clare wants to wait to think things over. Alli tells Dallas, who demands Clare tell Drew immediately. Dallas ends up telling Drew, who lashes out at Clare for not knowing who the father of her baby is and ruining his life.
Clare decides to tell Eli the truth before he hears it elsewhere, but he refuses to talk to her. He tells her not to come crying to him and calls her a whore before walking off.
QUICK REVIEW: Well…both of the guys in Clare’s life called her stupid. I really liked the Drew scene because he angrily appeared out of nowhere, plus they were able to integrate Bhandallas relationship drama without it being too intrusive. I know Eli can be a total jerk sometimes, but damn…I have no words for what he said to Clare, and I guess he needs to be placed on that list with Zoë now. Is there not a 90’s song called “Everyone’s Being An Asshole?” because during this episode we’re getting punched in the kidneys left and right.
If you include last week’s verbal dagger from Miles to Dallas, new Degrassi writer Scott Oleszkowicz clearly knows how to make these characters unrelenting. I’ve said before that this entire Clew/Eclare stuff is strongest when Degrassi zooms its focus in on the emotions of the individual characters and not the circus storyline they’re involved in. And Eli Goldsworthy is still the king of providing the most intense emotion on Degrassi.
Continuity alert: Alli calling out Clare once again for Clare’s disinterest in discussing anything major happening in Alli’s life at the time.
Triles vs. Themselves
Tristan sets up a sushi date in the gym for Miles, who doesn’t seem interested in it, but he joins Tris anyway. Tristan knows Miles wasn’t interested and finally learns why: Miles still has feelings for Maya. After confronting Miles about his lingering feelings, Tristan finally walks away from their relationship for good.
QUICK REVIEW: If you’re one of those fans who love to complain every day about Degrassi choosing “fanservice” over disposing of unhealthy couples, then you should be running over to twitter to praise the Degrassi Writers for ending Triles the right way fairly quickly. Tristan and Miles were using each other for their own emotional agendas, and it became clear very quickly in season 14 that they were doomed based on the fact Tristan was barely used throughout this major Miles arc. Tristan saw it wasn’t working, and instead of trying to force a relationship past its expiration date he wisely let Miles go.
It’s no surprise that Degrassi’s leading us to another Matlingsworth reunion. However, Degrassi has a chance to do something different this time. Perhaps they will take a broken couple, have them get their crap together individually, then try it again? Because there’d be no point in wasting viewers’ time slapping them back together in their current states.