On tonight’s episode of Parenthood, Zeek recovers from his surgery, and Crosby deals with the Oliver Rome situation. One question though… Has Max finally found a friend at school?
Zeek Recuperates

Zeek is out of the hospital and back home this episode, following his surgery on last week’s installment of Parenthood. And although his family members thought the challenge would be keeping their stubborn patriarch down, he’s actually not doing much of anything besides camping out on the couch all day.

This is concerning to Millie, who tries everything to get her husband to at least take a walk around the couch, let alone consider a stroll through their neighborhood. Various family members visit with Zeek (there’s a cute scene featuring Jasmine, Jabbar and Aida dropping by, and I personally think that’s a group that’s been sorely lacking in bonding with Zeek lately), but he seems content to sit around watching TV no matter their efforts. We do get to see some cuddling and parental reassurance between Zeek and Julia during their visit, which is kind of cute.

It becomes clear that Zeek is embarrassed and upset that he needs help doing something as simple as walking to the bathroom, and Millie eventually confides in Adam that she thinks her husband is afraid to try at all, and that he’s giving up. Kristina just so happens to be listening in, and she takes it upon herself to visit Zeek as well.

During their visit, the two bond over a shared hatred of the pity others take on you when you’re seriously sick (Kristina had cancer at one point on Parenthood, remember?), but Kristina also reminds him that he doesn’t have to pretend to be strong. What he does have to do, though, is try to get better for all the people who are counting on him.

The two eventually manage a walk outside, which Millie witnesses the tail end of, pleased by her husband’s progress. Is this a sign of things to come for the great Zeek Braverman?

Parenthood Recap: Zeek’s Big Surgery >>>

In Limbo

Joel and Julia continue to work through the aftermath of their separation, and things just seem to be getting more complicated. They bring Sydney to the house of the classmate she was picking on, where she gives an insincere apology before stomping off. The other girl’s parents are, understandably, not pleased, and aren’t having it when Joel and Julia try to explain this whole thing away as Sydney going through a tough time. I don’t blame the other parents, really.

Later, the ex-couple talks, and Julia expresses that she’s worried about the limbo state the kids are in. She makes it clear that they have to tell them she and Joel are not getting back together, and Joel looks real sad. I’m sorry, I’m still not feeling where this complete 180 from Joel is coming from. Just me?

Even later, Joel shows up at Julia’s when she and the kids are having dinner, much to Victor and Sydney’s delight. When Victor asks if he’s staying for dinner, though, things get weird again. Sydney asks when Joel WILL stay, since he’s not sticking around for the meal, and just when it seems like Julia is going to drop the bomb that she and Joel are totally over, she instead says they’re still trying to figure things out. So there must still be hope for those two crazy kids yet.

Hank Stands Up to Sandy

Hank isn’t doing so great on tonight’s episode of Parenthood on following his ex-wife’s wishes that Sarah steer clear of Ruby; in fact, in his very first scene, Sarah has an awkward encounter with Sandy at Hank’s apartment. This leads to a short discussion between Sandy and Sarah later on about Sarah not being around when Ruby is visiting Hank, and another discussion between Hank and Sarah about why Hank didn’t let her in on Sandy’s request.

Though Hank admits to having trouble articulating his thoughts to Sandy when they talk, he assures Sarah that he will have a chat with his ex about Sarah’s presence in his and Ruby’s lives. When he does, he does an excellent job of making it clear that Sarah is important to him and that their relationship is a serious one, not just some fling he’s exposing his daughter to. After his explanation, Sandy agrees to Sarah being around during Ruby’s visits, so that little extra bit of drama is over — at least for now.

“A Potpourri of Freaks”

A new girl at Chambers, Dylan, makes her first appearance this episode, and at first Kristina is happy that she takes an interest in hanging around Max. But during a dinnertime discussion, Max reveals that Dylan calls him “Aspergers” and “freak,” and the whole school a, and I quote, “potpourri of freaks,” and Kristina’s hopes for the friendship are dashed. 

When Kristina hears Dylan call Max “Aspergers” at school, she calls the girl over and reminds her that there is no name-calling at their school. Dylan doesn’t feel that she’s disrespected Max with the name, instead feeling that it’s just a fact that that’s what he has, but Kristina continues to lay down the law. Dylan challenges her quite a bit, and the girl’s frank attitude will be an intriguing shake up in the happy-go-lucky world Kristina has envisioned and thus far dwelled in at Chambers.

In general, Dylan’s influence on Max freaks Kristina out, but all is not negative in the world of Max on tonight’s Parenthood — in a later scene, Max asks his father what you do when you like a girl, and I’m pretty sure we’re supposed to assume the girl in question is Dylan. This could be interesting.

Hit Watch 2014: Which New Fall Shows Will Succeed? >>>

Crosby’s Dilemma

Finally, Crosby is still dealing with the aftermath of the Oliver Rome Situation (new band name?) from last week’s episode; in more ways than one. When Jabbar jumps on him when he’s lying in bed, Crosby has to reveal to his wife and son the injuries he received during his minor motorcycle accident.

This leads Jasmine to demand that Crosby take the minivan when he makes a trip to visit Oliver at his “healing” retreat, and not the motorcycle, though Crosby isn’t pleased. When Crosby gets there, he checks himself in in order to get close enough to Oliver to talk about his possible decision to go solo with another record label; not exactly the sort of relaxing discussion the workers there are ready to tolerate.

Oliver convinces Crosby to stay the night at the center, but the next morning, Mr. Rome reveals that he’s already signed with the other label. This leads to a major Crosby freak-out, wherein he screams a lot and knocks over some, I dunno, healing bowls or something. Basically, it doesn’t end well.

When Crosby returns home late, Jasmine makes it outside to greet him just in time to see him peeling off on his motorcycle again. Definitely not a good sign, but I can’t help but think the Parenthood writers are just trying to throw us off with all this Crosby adrenaline stupidity drama. We’ll see. 

That’s it for tonight! There are so few episodes of Parenthood left, just how much can they cram into these final episodes, do you think?

Parenthood airs every Thursday night at 10pm on NBC.

(Image courtesy of NBC)

Josie Cook

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV