Title: My So-Called Life S1.E16 “Resolutions”
Released: 1995

Drinking Game Tally: 14 drinks, 0 shots, 1 chug
‘90s Fashion Award: Mr. Katimski and His Partner
My So-Called Winner: Sharon
My So-Called Loser: Hallie
Brian Krakow vs. Jordan Catalano: Jordan

Sacre bleu! The Vampire Diaries is on hiatus for a couple of weeks! BUT that means I get to bring you another installment of My So-Called Life Lessons! And you guys, I think we can agree that My So-Called Life has taught us all a thing or two.

In the last episode, we learned that angels walk among us dressed as bohomeless girls! I wonder what this episode has in store for us? When I looked it up in a listing, this episode was titled Resolutions, which seemed appropriate, since the last one took place during Christmas. But Netflix says this episode is titled Reservations. So perhaps it’s not about New Year’s at all? Perhaps this whole episode is one madcap adventure about the Chase family trying to make it out to dinner, a la Faulty Towers?

What Happened

It’s New Year’s Eve! And Angela’s thinking about a New Year’s Resolution! About not thinking so much! I guess it’s a good thing the show got cancelled, because where would we be without Angela’s ramblings? Sharon is making resolutions of her own: about not having sex with Kyle — or anyone else — unless she really, really loves them. Or perhaps if they’re really cute. Kyle is ALSO making resolutions. About spending more time with his dog. And Sharon. Hell, EVERYONE’s making resolutions! That one teacher, Brian Krakow (he’s resolving not to be a creepy stalker, so yay!) Rickie and Rayanne, Patty and Graham.

And then there’s Jordan. Who’s thinking, ‘hey, is tonight New Year’s Eve?’ (Dumb Point -1)

The ball drops. Everyone smiles. Rayanne and Rickie kiss Angela’s cheeks, which makes her face scrunch up adorably.

The next morning, as he has cooked breakfast and is now cleaning up, it appears Rickie is earning his keep. Patty and Graham talk about how awesome Rickie is, but he comes back inside in time to hear them say how he can’t stay there forever. Bummer.

At school, that one teacher is grumpy because his resolution was to give up coffee. And none has done their homework. What DOES Odysseus want, squirrelly teacher dude?

Angela is doing Jordan’s homework, despite her resolution not to, but he thinks it’s wrong, since she’s not his girlfriend anymore. I wonder if he feels the same way about hand jobs?

Sharon is trying to avoid Kyle, but he corners her in an empty classroom to tell her that he LOVES her. In front of Rayanne, who thinks it’s very funny.

Graham is trying to tell that really chatty, flirty lady, Hallie, from his cooking class that he really doesn’t want to become a part of her restaurant venture. She continues to flirt and pretend that it is fine while she continues to try to reel him in.

Danielle tries to get Patty to allow her to wear makeup, without much success, and Rickie tells the family that his aunt and uncle have come through after all, and that he’s ‘going home’. He goes outside and stands forlornly.

The next day, Rickie is falling asleep in class, and Angela asks him to tell Rayanne that everything is okay. Then she signs Jordan Catalano up for English tutoring. On account of the fact that he can’t read good.

In gym class, Rayanne and Sharon bond over the fact that neither of them are in love with the boys they were having sex with. Their faces inch closer and closer and the sexual tension ins THROUGH THE ROOF! Sharon tells Angela her vow to never ever have sex again until she’s in complete and total love. With Rayanne.

Graham’s loser brother comes over to fix something electronic for Patty, and she mentions restaurant Hallie. Loser brother, remembering how Graham almost cheated on Patty a few episodes back, acts really weird, which makes for a tense situation when Graham gets home.

So it turns out that Brian Krakow is going to be Jordan Catalano’s tutor. Jordan reads his name as ‘Brain’. (Dumb Point -2)

While squirrelly teacher is inciting screaming in his classroom, Rickie finds out that his aunt and uncle have moved, leaving no forwarding address. The next morning, Rickie comes in to talk about Odysseus, but actually tells the teacher that he’s homeless. The teacher takes him to the guidance counselor who wants to put Rickie in a place called ‘Pride House’. Well done, guidance counselor. Anyway, I think the squirrelly teacher is going to let Rickie live with him. But is that legal?

Brian Krakow tries to get Sharon to switch with him so he doesn’t have to tutor Jordan Catalano, but they have one of those conversations where they’re both talking but not about the same thing. So later, while he tries to tell Jordan that he can’t really help him, Jordan shows Brian Krakow that there are things — like how to have sex with girls — that Jordan can teach Brian. Then Jordan tries to ask Brian questions about the Odyssey, but now Brian is WAY more interested in what he could learn from this budding relationship. Angela stops by to see how it’s going, and asks Jordan if he wants her to help tutor him, and he tells her that no, he doesn’t, but that if she wanted to help him, she could have sex with him. This sends Angela into the most adorable and awkward fit of giggles and she can’t leave fast enough. I am reminded of similar reactions I had whenever boys mentioned anything remotely sexual or flirtatious. Oh Angela, it’ll get better. In about 15 years.

I’m reminded that squirrelly teacher’s name is Katimski! Yay! Mr. Katimski tells Rickie that he’s on the waiting list for the Pride House, and that the guidance counselor has temporarily placed him in a ‘facility’. This does not bode well.

Patty comes home to find Graham on the phone with Hallie. It is really awkward. They both lie to each other about what their New Year’s resolutions were.

Mr. Katimski, who I now realize looks and acts like Paul Giamatti with hair, shows up at the Chase’s house and yells at Graham and Patty for not taking better care of Rickie. Then he apologizes and they invite him in for coffee.

Kyle tries to get Sharon to stay with him by feeding her Brad Pitt fetish. Ha! This was even before Gwyneth! Look how far Brad Pitt has come. Sharon gives in.

Patty thinks Graham is about to tell her that he’s had an affair, but he actually just tells her he wants to open the restaurant. This one little moment makes Patty realize that she does indeed, want to support Graham in his business venture. It’s funny how thinking you’re going to loose someone puts things into perspective.

Brian Krakow is pestering Jordan Catalano about how to talk to girls, but Jordan really just wants to learn how to read.

It’s raining and cold, and Rickie is huddling in a phone booth, calling Mr. Katimksi… why? To tell him he has a place to stay, when it’s obvious he doesn’t? I don’t understand. Why doesn’t Mr. Katimski invite him to stay at his place? OOOOHHHH!!!! Because Mr. Katimski actually lives at the real Pride House. Except this is still the ’90s, so he could lose his job if the school board finds out he’s gay. There’s some perspective, huh? Mr. Katimski, things WILL get better. In about 20 years.

Graham meets Hallie at the restaurant, and she’s acting all weird, talking about the restaurant, when it’s obvious she’s really talking about Graham. Don’t fall for it, Graham.

At Mr. Katimski’s house, there’s a knock on the door, and it’s Rickie! He’s crying! It just got too hard to be alone!!!! And while I giggle at the over dramatics, it’s Rickie, so I’m also touched. Mr. Katimski hugs him, and welcomes him inside.

Drinking Game Tally: 14 drinks, 0 shots, 1 chug

’90s Fashion Award

To Mr. Katimski and his partner for their clashing yet coordinated geometric patterned sweaters!

Lessons I Learned About High School

At any given moment, there are empty classrooms, just waiting for impromptu make out sessions.

My So-Called Winner

Sharon!!! For giving into to her teenaged hormones and having sex with a boy she likes, even though she doesn’t LOOOOVVVEEEE him. She’ll save that for Rayanne.

My So-Called Loser

That stupid Hallie bitch. I want Patty to kick her ass. No. I just want Graham to turn her down. Coldly.

Brian Krakow vs. Jordan Catalano

So Jordan Catalano for 2 dumb points in this episode, but then he showed us he has sex smarts, so there’s that.

Brian didn’t get any stalker points in this episode, but he was kind of a twerp and annoyed me. Plus, Jordan’s hair has just gotten to that perfect length, so I’m going to say Jordan WINS!

Life Lessons Learned

  • That sometimes, as long as they’re being safe, girls need a hormonal outlet that doesn’t have to be about love.

  • That no matter how nostalgic we might feel about any bygone era, it’s good to remember the Mr. Katimskis out there, who have been suffering and living under prejudice and fighting for equality.

Jenny grew up on a steady diet of Piers Anthony, Isaac Asimov and Star Wars novels. She has now expanded her tastes to include television, movies, and YA fiction.