Television

Younger Season 7 Episode 8 Review: Baroness

Can people truly change, or are some incapable of growth?

That was the question that loomed at the forefront of Younger Season 7 Episode 8, as we witnessed a softer side of Quinn.

My instincts are still screaming that we shouldn’t trust her, but is it possible that, like Liza, our judgment is clouded because of our loyalty to her? Could Quinn not be as bad as we assume, or is this all part of an elaborate ruse?

At first, Quinn’s actions seemed to have an ulterior motive, to either get under Liza’s skin or leave Caitlin in the lurch at the last second by bailing on the Spirit of Vassar award.

However, Quinn showed she wasn’t the villain we all assumed she was during her heart-to-heart with Liza. 

Liza: I just wanted to say thank you, and I don’t know, I wish I understood you better.
Quinn: Hell I don’t. I’ve written two books about me, and I can tell you, bitch is unpredictable.
Liza: No, I’m serious. I want to think that you’ve changed, and Charles obviously does, but you kind of built a trap for me the night of your book launch, and I fell into it. But are you that person or this one?
Quinn: You need to remember you were digging for dirt on me in order to get between me and Charles, so I had to play rough. I knew it didn’t look great, but when it comes to him, I’d rather save my ass than my face. Doesn’t he deserve that?
Liza: Yes.
Quinn: You may not know me, but I know who you are. You’re Maria von Trapp. You’re sweetness and light and pillow fights and guitars, and I am not just that. Whether I like it or not, I’m the baroness, and no one roots for the baroness. What they always forget is the baroness loved the captain. She loved him very much. Good night, Liza.

Yes, she set Liza up on Younger Season 7 Episode 6, but Quinn did have a point when she played the self-defense angle of sorts.

Liza did go looking for dirt on Quinn under the guise of fact-checking “The F-Word,” so Quinn’s actions, while manipulative, devious, and underhanded, are more understandable than we first thought.

Quinn has never played well with others and lashes out when she feels threatened.

She determined Liza’s digging was a threat to her and her relationship with Charles, so she took preventative measures to ensure her relationship with Charles survived.

Was it the right thing to do morally and ethically? No, but do we have a better understanding of who Quinn is and where she was coming from? Unfortunately yes.

Quinn’s vulnerability was appreciated, as she explained to Liza her reasoning and actions and especially liked how she admitted to not knowing who she is half the time.

It made Quinn not necessarily more likable but more relatable and human.

Heck, she even offered to connect David with a venture capitalist friend of hers and got Caitlin a summer internship, which were probably the most selfless things she’s done as a character, as there was nothing explicitly in it for her.

Quinn: I thought I was so smart bailing early, but maybe you were smarter. You stayed, you did the marriage thing, and you got Caitlin out of the deal. I do a lot of deals, but I don’t have a Caitlin. Probably never will.
Liza: Quinn…
Quinn: Of course, not going through childbirth has certain compensations. Everything down here is exactly the way god and my waxer Fabian made me. See don’t worry. I’m still me. See you later.

So is this Quinn’s attempt to turn the page and start fresh with Liza?

It certainly seems like it is, but I’m still waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Quinn is only extending an olive branch under the presumption of having won Charles’s heart, but his eventual reconciliation with Liza will most likely cause Quinn to be out for blood. And who knows what she’ll do then?

Elsewhere, Maggie officially became canceled by the end of the installment.

It was expected that Cass’s revenge would be the culprit, but that didn’t make it any easier to watch.

Maggie is such a fun and lovable character, so it’s hard to see her going through such a rough time.

In 24 hours, she lost her teaching job and her art show, and it appears that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Cass may have started the ‘cancel Maggie Amato show,’ but now that the internet’s caught wind of it, there’s no closing those floodgates.

What’s interesting about this subplot is its commentary on cancel culture because, on a micro-level, Maggie’s cancelation has nothing to do with the problematic title of an old art show.

Cass: I’m afraid the situation is going sideways. We’ve had more tweets.
Maggie: Ooh, your poor little fingers. It must be really hard typing razzmatazz, so many z’s.
Cass: I don’t understand.
Maggie: I know it was you. Groovy, right on, and a quote from Billie Jean King. This was all you. You set me up because you didn’t believe me about Camila.
Cass: Of course I don’t believe you. She gave me a bust of herself last Christmas. Why would you give her another one? You pressured her to send you photos of her bosom. And worse than that, you are damaging these kids with your antiquated views.
Maggie: Me, antiquated? You wear rouge and tell me to pack my velize for Provincetown.
Cass: Well, guess what. You can unpack it because you’re fired. You brought this on yourself. And I don’t blame Camila, poor thing. She’s vulnerable, she’s struggling, and you took advantage. She’s trying to overcome her sexual blocks.
Maggie: Oh, she overcomes them, all right, like the flume ride at Coney Island, like a broken showerhead, like an open fire hydrant in a hot city street.

Maggie’s affair with Camila was her downfall, and if it hadn’t been the non-PC art show title, it would have been something else because Cass was determined to make Maggie pay for sleeping with her wife.

Cass would have dug something else up or even created something out of thin air, all in the name of vengeance.

Because for Cass, it was never about holding Maggie accountable for her past; it was all about exacting revenge.

However, on a macro level, Maggie is being canceled for something she did in her past, like many other celebrities before her.

She, though, doesn’t have the cache to go on a public apology tour because she’s not that well-known.

So unless something changes, it looks as if Maggie’s art career is over.

She’s committed a cardinal sin, and thanks to the internet and age of social media, that can’t be undone.

It’ll be interesting to see how the series explores this very timely issue of cancel culture and where things shake out for Maggie.

Lastly, Kelsey’s reality episode subplot was random and confusing and felt very forced, almost as if it was contrived to push Kelsey and Clare’s ex Rob together.

Kelsey is a strong woman and doesn’t need a man, but if she has to be with someone, I’d rather see her with Zane, someone we know well and with whom she has electric chemistry.

Kelsey: I don’t talk when I look, which may not make very interesting or compelling viewing, which could result in lower ratings, but it’s just me.
Brett: No, no, you’re tender today.
Kelsey: Not at all. I’m just… I know this building, and there’s nothing under $2 million. I threw a party here on the penthouse for my company.
Brett: And your company is important to you, isn’t it Kelsey? It’s lonely at the top.
Kelsey: I’m not lonely. I’m extremely popular, and you know what?
Brett: What?
Kelsey: No, no, I’m good. I’m not doing this.
Brett: Well, I may not be able to make all of your dreams come true, but how about this bookshelves? Your love of books is one thing I can satisfy. It’s like it was made for uh, I don’t know, say a young publishing exec who sometimes curls up with a novel to nurse a broken heart.
Kelsey: Hang on.
Brett: That’s one of your books, right?
Kelsey: Is this cut in half? What the hell is this?
Brett: It’s genius, right? You don’t want a big ole bookcase eating up floor space. Solution? Faux.
Kelsey: OK, I’m done. This whole show is insane. You haven’t shown me one apartment I can afford and now this?
Brett: This is aspirational TV. No one in America wants to see what you can afford.
Kelsey: You are just wasting my time, and guys, he’s wasting your time too. And just so you know America, I can do a lot better than a guy who talks about his cats and their many moods in between takes. And speaking of faux, that’s a sock in his pants. Wardrobe told me.

However, since Zane has been MIA for most of this season, it seems like the writers are desperate for Kelsey to have a new love interest, and they are intent on making that love interest, Rob.

I have nothing personally against Rob because we hardly know him, which is part of the problem.

He’s a one-dimensional stand-in for Zane, and he and Kelsey don’t seem to have much in common.

The writers are trying to convince us they have this sort of undeniable chemistry, but it’s just not there.

All of this feels very inorganic and created just for the sake of drama.

It’s unclear where the girl code stands on dating your roommate’s baby mama’s ex, who’s not technically part of your friend group, but the general ruling would probably be no.

When in doubt, err on the side of caution, or at the very least, get your friend’s permission before you start dating her ex.

Granted, this diatribe could be premature, as Kelsey rebuffed Rob’s advances, but something tells me, the writers wouldn’t have brought Rob back for no reason.

Kelsey: You said this was going to be good for my brand, which is what now, exactly? Some desperate, thirsty Manhattan bulge hunter?
Lauren: Now that actually sounds like a show.

No, there’s more of this storyline to come, and it’s bound to be painful to watch when it’s clear the writers are just killing time until Zane returns.

And with Hilary Duff attached to Hulu’s How I Met Your Father, a Younger Kelsey-centric spinoff seems less and less likely, meaning she and Zane will most likely end up reconciling before the credits roll for the final time.

Some stray thoughts:

  • Lauren has a heart of gold, but you should never let that girl be your manager. I love her to death, but she’s not built to manage someone’s career. She should stay in her lane and stick to planning kickass parties.

  • Is anyone else confused about what Liza ever saw in David? Like how did she end up dating, let alone marrying a doofus like him? She can do way better, and whether it’s Josh or Charles, Liza’s heart should go to someone who appreciates and loves her.

  • If Caitlin’s such a big Quinn Tyler stan, then wouldn’t she know her idol is dating her mother’s ex? It was all over Page Six, after all.

  • Charles is not going to be happy when he hears that Liza and Kelsey have not only continued with Inkubator but are actively pursuing other authors. Wouldn’t it be a conflict of interest or violate the terms of their employment at Empirical in some way?

So what did you think, Younger Fanatics?

Has Quinn changed?

Is Maggie’s art career over?

Are you ‘shipping Kelsey and Rob?

Hit the comments below to let me know your thoughts. If you missed the latest episode, remember you can watch Younger online at TV Fanatic.

Jessica Lerner is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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