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S02.E19: Guilt/Gunah

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Riley begins to feel guilty about his affair with Vanessa after a heart-to-heart with her boyfriend, Freddy (Brian Thomas Smith). Also, Al's family wants to arrange a marriage for him at home because they don't approve of him dating multiple women, on the CBS Original series UNITED STATES OF AL, Thursday, April 21 (8:31-9:01 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network, and available to stream live and on demand on Paramount+


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"A sword?"

"Yes. It is a symbol of masculinity."

"A little on the nose, but okay..."


Loved Art translating Al's mom's disappointed ranting - parental anger really does cross all boundaries :D. And I especially loved his talk with her later on, too, reassuring her that he's keeping a good eye on Al and that he's doing fine overall. That was very sweet. Indeed, Al certainly seems to be handling his relationship situation a lot better than Riley's handling his - everyone's on the same page with the casual dating and whatnot, nobody's keeping any secrets from each other. 

Also loved Al's talk with Ariana about the struggle to follow one's own path versus what their parent wants. I liked how she could relate to his situation, and I'm glad she was able to give him some advice in that regard. I also can't argue with Al that he and Ariana would have very beautiful children :D. But I do like how she continues to stand firm on how serious, or not, they are. 

As for everything with Riley and Vanessa and Freddy, oof, I feel bad for Freddy. I kind of hope he's not entirely in the dark about what's going on with Riley and Vanessa, that he has some clue that something's up, so it might, hopefully, be a little less painful when he does find out about their affair. 

And Riley cheating, I get why he's struggling with that. He has a history of that, it's something he's trying to work on (maybe not as well or as hard as he should, but still). Vanessa eagerly jumping into this, however, I'd be interested to learn more about why she's doing this. She broke up with Riley in part because he cheated on her. And sure, she and Freddy have had their tensions, but she did seem genuinely happy with him overall. Course, she did admit to being jealous upon seeing Riley and Holly together back at Christmas, so... But yeah, I think she needs to talk to someone, too, and work through her own reasons for why she's doing this. 

I did like Riley and Freddy's talk, though. It was good to learn a little more about Freddy's past, with his training for the Maple Leafs, and I liked his suggestion that Riley needs to find a new "team", as it were. He's right. I think that would go a long way towards helping Riley, with a lot of things. 

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Good episode!  I liked Al’s talk with Ariana, and how he’s working through the differences in social expectations in his two worlds.  

probably I’m in the minority but I like Riley and Vanessa’s affair, as a plot development.  They just seem like a good couple, and it is the kind of thing people do—-finalizing a divorce can remind you of the reasons you began the relationship in the first place.  To me, Freddy never has seemed really right for Vanessa, and something about Holly always seemed wrong for Riley.  

hope this show gets many more seasons too.  

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Ariana and Al really would have amazingly beautiful kids. 

The scene between Riley and Freddy was really nice, I feel so bad for Freddy. I liked getting a bit of his backstory (and that Riley was so shocked that he played hockey) and his advice to Riley was actually really good. So does he have an idea of what is happening? I normally hate cheating stories, and I do hope that this comes to an end soon, but I can at least understand how this is happening. Riley has a history of cheating, the two of them clearly have a lot of unresolved feelings, the divorce brought back a lot of feelings, I would really like to hear more of Vanessa's thought process here next. She seems to be pretty happy with Freddy, and she seems like the one who is even more excited about the affair than Riley, does she feel unfulfilled? Does it give her some power back after being so hurt by Riley cheating on her?

Parental disapproval is truly the universal language. His talk with Al's mom was really nice, and now Al doesn't have to marry the neighborhood bully! Damn you Instagram!

Edited by tennisgurl
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