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The FELICITY Rewatch Project: 3.2 + 3.3 Goodbye Julie, Hello John Ritter

And hi-bye to Leon, because he keeps popping in and out.

The FELICITY Rewatch Project: 3.2 + 3.3 Goodbye Julie, Hello John Ritter

Follow the whole rewatch here

Last week, Sarah wrapped up Season 2 and brought us into Season 3, where we met a young man with wacky highlights and a free spirit named LEON. 

Let's drink to Leon! I'll miss him. And let's go ahead and drink to Julie, too, because while this is pretty much the WORST POSSIBLE GOODBYE for the character and actress, Amy Jo Johnson had a lot of great moments in the first two seasons of Felicity, and I'll miss her, too.

The Felicity Drinking Game Rules

 

Drink once every time:

You cringe during the "New Version of You" credit sequence.

Felicity is endearingly earnest.

Ben smiles sheepishly.

Noel is adorkable.

Elena is a better friend than anyone deserves.

Meghan is mean and it's awesome.

Javier butchers a word or figure of speech.

Richard freaks out (in a good or bad way).

 

Drink twice every time:

Felicity stresses you out.

Felicity says, "Dear Sally."

Sean invents something.

Javier refers to Ben as “Benjamin.”

Onto the eps!

3.2 "The Anti-Natalie Intervention"

Just a general heads up about Felicity Season 3 and the lo-fi pics you'll see from it: a lot of it takes place through Sean's Docuventary lens, especially now that the IFC wants to make a series out of it. On the one hand, I'm like, "Why would IFC want to make this into a series?" and then I realize I'm willingly watching that series as we speak, so congrats to Sean for his first winning idea!

Richard's freaking out (drink!) about Noel, and for once it's for a good reason: Noel (or is it Leon??? jk it's definitely Leon) cheerfully tells everyone he and Natalie are now married! The only person who's almost as upset as Richard is Javier, who feels responsible for being related to such a manipulative monster. Richard schedules an intervention, and it goes exactly as well as you might think, with everyone ganging up on Leon, who defends Natalie as "the most worldly, exciting and adventurous person [he knows]." He's furious at his friends, especially since the whole thing's being filmed for Docuventary purposes, and storms out as fast as his leather pants can carry him.

Then Felicity serves up some Elena-level friendship by going to Noel and apologizing beautifully for the intervention silliness. "It was presumptuous and immature and insulting to you and Natalie." Noel looks mollified, especially when Felicity admits that she was just scared because she was still thinking of him as the four-year plan Noel she met when she was a freshman, but he's changed and that's okay. Later, Noel's wistfully looking over his old four-year plan, and Natalie comes up behind him and calls him a dork. Ugh, Natalie sucks. Felicity invites them both to dinner and tells all of the friends to behave, and they're really trying, being very sweet and patient as Natalie goes on and on about how WILD & CRAZY she is. All of her stories are very "look at me!" but everyone listens nicely, except Noel who looks increasingly stressed out about being married to a woman who doesn't believe in money or jobs or staying in one place. Oh yeah, and also except Richard, who is so much my favorite in the way he dresses down the black widow who ensnared his bestie. For instance, when Natalie says, "It was the most visceral feeling," Richard snaps, "Visceral means feeling," and when Natalie says, "I have a theory that money always works out," he snorts, "Oh yeah, there's relativity, and then there's that one." Team Richard! 

Noel gives himself a moment to have a panic attack in the bathroom, and while he's gone Natalie stumbles upon Richard's Anti-Natalie Intervention notes. She gets (understandably) offended and leaves, and Noel comes out to find her gone. He spends the night looking for her, and Felicity is an A+ friend again by helping him - but he admits to her that he made a mistake in marrying Natalie. He misses the old Noel, too. He misses school and his friends and his normal life. He was heartbroken and furious when Felicity chose Ben over him, and then he started to get over it with Ruby, but that turned into a bit of a disaster, too. Natalie helps him forget all that, but he's ready to come back from his Leon vacation. Felicity tells him she'll help him come back, and it's such a great, honest, solid conversation between these two friends who have been through so much. 

Later, Natalie comes back to the house and Noel stammers over telling her he thinks they shouldn't be married - and she responds by punching him square in the face. He starts talking to Elena's pre-law neighbor (more on him in a bit, ugh) about getting an annulment, but then Natalie comes back all contrite and sexy with pizza, and she seduces him right back into Leonhood. Noel! Be strong! 

Meanwhile, things are pretty bad in Julie and Elena land. Julie's being weird and shady whenever anyone tries to talk to her about her dad, and when Elena tries to get her to open up about what's bothering her, Julie confides to Sean's camera that she's fed up with Elena's nosiness (which is of course actually friendly support). ALSO Elena is feeling very sexually frustrated with her sweet wonderful perfect virgin boyfriend Tracy, and it doesn't help that a bunch of "hot" guys live across the hall from the girls' new apartment. (I do not think they're hot, especially compared to sweet wonderful perfect Tracy, but no one asked me.) One of the guys in particular, Finn, is really flirting with Elena, who's responding MUCH more enthusiastically than she should - especially when she finds out that he's a really smart pre-law student instead of the total dummy she was hoping he'd be. She keeps hanging out with him and bringing Julie along as a buffer, which offends Julie who feels like a third wheel. Elena tells Tracy she needs a sign that God exists if he's going to stand in the way of her having sex, and right when Finn's about to kiss her (no!!!!), a picture of Tracy falls off the shelf, and she decides that's the sign she needs. She runs to Tracy and makes out with him, but she still does NOT seem happy later when she sees Finn leaving Julie's room post-sex. She says, "REALLY?!" to Julie, who responds with profound bitterness and self-hatred, "I don’t need your attitude right now, okay?" I miss fun ladies being friends :(

And finally! Ben’s dad calls and says he’s in town and wants to see him. Felicity thinks it’s a good thing, and Ben tells her he loves her optimism, but he knows better, because it’s never a good thing with his dad. But when they meet up, his dad is really sweet, and tells Ben he's in recovery, and he wants to make amends as part of his twelve steps. They have a nice meal, and Ben starts to feel hopeful - especially when his dad invites him and Felicity to a ballgame. Ben's so excited, and Felicity is, too, but then his dad stands them up. Gahhh! Ben looks crushed, and tells Felicity he's mad at himself for falling for this again when it's just like every other time with his dad - but Felicity tells him it's not like every other time, because this time he has her. She hugs him so tight as we head into credits. 

How many times do I have to take a drink?

12

BFFs

In the very last moment of friendship we get to see Julie enjoy with the other girls, here they are drooling over the completely mundane dudes from across the hall as they help move the girls' furniture.

Javier Keeps TRYING To Warn You

Richard Out Here Asking The Hard Questions

He thinks the only reason Noel might have married Natalie is because he knocked her up.

Cameo

Andrew Covington is played by the very, very wonderful John Ritter. Scott Speedman and Keri Russell both talked at length at the ATX Felicity Reunion about what a privilege it was to work with this great actor just three years before his untimely death.

3.3 "Hello, I Must Be Going"

Woof, this season gets dark with a quickness. First, the couple of fun things before stuff gets bummery: 

Fun Item #1: The episode opens with Felicity dying Noel's hair back from its Leon highlights. RIP, Leon! Noel's finally snapped out of his Natalie stupor, and he's determined to get this annulment. Natalie keeps fighting him on it, until she admits that she gets a big inheritance from a rich uncle if they stay married, and Noel can have some of the money. He's still determined to get the annulment, and tells the judge that Natalie misled him regarding the reason for their marriage, but then she says she's already turned down the inheritance because she truly loves Noel. Obviously this girl is just manipulative and nuts, but I always enjoy a healthy dose of Leon screentime.

Fun Item #2: The girls finally meet their new roommate, Molly. She's cute and quirky and British, studying fashion and photography, and she fits right into the Docuventary crew - especially when she tells a gullible Sean that she's minoring in orgasmology. Spoiler! This plotline, too, will take a turn for the dark soon. (Not the orgasmology thing, just Molly in general.)

Fun Item #3: Meghan and Sean are still soooooo cuuuuuute together. When Sean gets a broken nose (more on that later, ugh), Meghan jokes that he can now get a nose job without anyone giving him a hard time about it. Turns out, Sean's only source of physical pride is in his nose, and he's devastated. Meghan groans and rolls her eyes through most of their arguments about this topic, until she realizes he's really upset, then she shows him a picture of herself in junior high. She was a giant nerd and got her own nose job in high school, then everyone mocked her for it. Sean's touched by this vulnerable revelation, and they're back to being the cutest again.

Okay, onto the doom and gloom! Julie's still being weird and shady about her dad and pushing everyone away. Then Ben gets a call from his mom that his dad is missing. He's furious (so furious he accidentally breaks Sean's nose while they're playing basketball) and doesn't want to deal with it, and he doesn't want to talk about it, because his dad has pulled this missing act before. Felicity is obviously anxious to support him, but she respects his wishes that he wants some distance. Julie, however, does NOT respect his wishes, and she pushes her way into the situation, obviously projecting her own dad issues onto Ben. But here's the thing: after forcing him to talk about it, she then brags to Felicity that Ben confided in her because they have "a history," and it's the smuggest and most obnoxious thing EVER. Felicity's obviously wigging that Ben's confiding in his ex-girlfriend instead of her, and even though that's not what's really happening, Julie's sure making it seem that way. UGH. JULIE. STOP.

Ben doesn't want to file a missing persons report because he knows his dad's just on a bender somewhere, but Julie files it on his behalf, because she's feeling guilty about her own dad stuff which will soon be revealed. He finally opens up to Felicity and they're making up when Julie barges in and says she needs to talk to Ben "alone." Girl, back off. Ben tells her she can say whatever she's about to say in front of Felicity (good boy!), and Julie tells him his dad's in the hospital after a very serious relapse. Felicity starts to weigh in and Julie SCREAMS at her, "You don't know what you're talking about! You don't know what you're talking about!" and it's so dramatic and frankly insane. But then she finally breaks down and admits that she lied when she told her biological parents she wasn't an organ match for her dad, so he died over the summer, and she's been drowning with guilt over it. She convinces Ben to go see his dad in the hospital, which is good, and then Julie just packs all her shit and disappears, leaving New York to move back in with her adoptive parents. She leaves behind a video where she says a personal goodbye to every member of the group. The video's sweet, but honestly, why do the writers hate Julie so much? What a terrible way to end her arc on this show! 

How many times do I have to take a drink?

5

Meet The New Julie

Molly's played by British actress Sarah-Jane Potts, and she just steps right into Julie's place of being kinda fun and carefree except for when she's (spoiler!) melodramatic and a weird drain on Ben's emotional energy. They also have a similarly bananas fashion sense.

Goodbye, Julie. You Deserved Better.

--

That's it for this week! Questions: seriously, why do the writers hate Julie? How do you guys feel about Molly, and the new, darker tone of the third season? Will you miss Leon, or am I crazy?

Meet Sarah here next Wednesday morning as she covers "Greeks and Geeks" and "Surprise."

 

 

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Meredith Borders's photo About the Author: Meredith Borders is a brewpub owner and freelance writer/editor living in Houston. Her dog's middle name is Hermione, and she makes purse decisions based almost entirely on their capacity to hold books.
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