So, before venturing into my episode guides/summaries/critiques/what-have-yous, a few standard, dull disclaimers:
Standard, Dull Disclaimer #1: The posts which follow will contain what might charitably be considered "spoilers." (Though can one really "spoil" a pop culture moment which occurred two presidencies ago?) In that... I summarize the entire danged thing, and then nitpick at it. No dark corner of the plot is safe from my prying eyes! But this isn't the Lost finale of 2010 (which I still haven't seen, by the way, but if it in any way features Sayid in a grubby tank top... then I approve) it's... an episode of a comedy-drama which aired about a decade ago. (Samantha does NOT turn out to the Smoke Monster, in case you were wondering.)
Standard, Dull Disclaimer #2: The posts which follow may or may not (but most likely may) contain unsavory language and content. Nature of the beast, I reckon! I shall follow their linguistic lead here, if they use the f-word, then it seems likely that I'll use the f-word. And if they use the c-word, then it seems likely that I'll use the c-word. (Though I'm still psyching myself up for that one--no matter how many times Eve Ensler asks me to chant it and Inga Muscio encourages me to embrace it, I hear that sucker and I think not, "My, what a lovely term of feminist empowerment!" but "Ah, what fond memories I have of drunken frat boys yelling that at me during Take Back the Night marches!")
Standard, Dull Disclaimer #3: The posts which follow are purely, entirely, and exclusively my opinion. No matter how much one's students might wish one to stand in for all feminists, everywhere ("Since you're not married, that means all feminists hate marriage and will never get married, clearly that is all the evidence I need to make my case on that one, NOW WHERE IS MY A?", etc.), this, I do not claim to do. The episode that I love, you may hate. That bit I think is lovely, you may detest. That moment I find empowering and inspiring may make you squirm. The quote which I claim is a charming moment of feminist self-realization, you may think is simply dopey. It's all good. I think the tutu in the opening is delightful, you think it's silly. Samantha's cruising of a priest made you giggle, it made me yawn. You thought the Russian was lovely, I wanted to slug him with a vodka bottle. Such diversity of thoughts and viewpoints... they enrich us all!