Friday, November 21, 2008

Ugly Betty/The Office - When Betty Met YETI/Frame Toby

Okay, a couple of weeks ago Betty bonded with Amanda and now during last night's episode our favorite misfit shared a warm and fuzzy moment with Marc. Hmm--if Betty's becoming friends with the Besties, who will her nemesis be? Especially given the exit of Kimmie Keegan earlier this season...

Wilhelmina's set her sights on Connor. "He's me," she tells Marc. "He's the Male-a-mina!" Marc gushingly agrees. Willie's plan involves getting Connor alone--a meeting with advertisers located in Florida. After the meeting, she plies him with wine. But Connor resists temptation and remains faithful to fiancee Molly. Much to Willie's chagrin. While Connor's away on business, Daniel stands in for him with a presentation to Molly's elementary school class.

The love quadrangle continues...

But the main focus of the episode was Betty's attempt to get accepted into the Young Editors Training Initiative aka Y.E.T.I. Unfortunately she's gotten a late start and has only 48 hours to create a magazine. Against the better judgment of her friends and family, she choose fashion as the subject. But when she finds out that Marc is also submitting a presentation for the program, she quits.

Ignacio convinces her to continue with her presentation--but to change from fashion to a magazine concept that better reflects her personality. After staying up all night, Betty finishes the presentation--but, not only is Daniel not available for her run-through, he misses the deadline to submit a letter of recommendation.

Her presentation, however, goes off without a hitch. Betty pitches "B Magazine"--instead selling women an image of how they should be, her magazine celebrates women the way they already are. I think I'd subscribe to that! She's riding high after the presentation--until Marc enters, entourage in tow. His glossy concept is "A-List Magazine," a smart and insightful exploration of celebrity culture. He's even got an article by David Sedaris and the sponsorship of Badgley-Mischka.

Betty sees her chance to rise in the publishing industry stall in a fantasy sequence where she imagines herself still working as Daniel's assistant in fifty years. But a call from the Y.E.T.I. people brings the good news that Betty has been accepted into the program. The bad news is that Marc has not--because Y.E.T.I. never accepts two applicants from the same magazine.

Marc lashes out at Betty claiming she was accepted to fill a racial quota. Betty calls Y.E.T.I. and they don't deny the claim. She is unable to take joy in being accepted to the program under those circumstances, so she drops out in order that Marc may attend.

Better late than never, Daniel intercedes to set things right. By telling the committee that Betty worked for Player magazine, he's able to circumvent the one applicant per magazine rule and his effusive six-page letter of recommendation didn't hurt either.

And so Marc and Betty will be attending Y.E.T.I. together. Former nemeses turned BFF.

Speaking of nemeses, Toby returned to The Office last night. Actually, he'd been back for a week before Michael noticed--but when he witnessed the former and now current HR manager back from Costa Rica, his howling could be heard blocks away.

So Michael and Dwight conspire to come up with a plan to--as the episode title suggests--Frame Toby. Before coming up with the plan to get Toby fired, Michael makes an attempt to be friendly. "But that is like trying to be friends with an evil...snail," Michael bemoans.

First they try to set Pam up to be sexually harassed by the hapless Toby, but Pam reads the note she was supposed to hand Toby and refuses. Next they try to goad Toby into fighting. But that doesn't work either. So, as a last resort, Dwight convinces Michael to buy drugs and plant them in Toby's workspace.

After Michael clumsily negotiates a drug deal for $500 worth of weed, Dwight tips off the police using Andy's name. But when they show up, Michael has second thoughts about the plan and backs out at the last minute, admitting the bag of green is his. Or more accurately, the bag of GREENS, as what Michael bought for $500 was a plastic baggie of Caprese Salad. "Welcome back, Jerky Jerk-face," Michael tells Toby.

But while Michael and Toby may have reached a shaky detente, Ryan dumps Kelly to go to Thailand. But he wants to have sex one more time--and if she can give him some money, that would be amazing. Maybe he's just trying to avoid cleaning the microwave. Maybe he's trying to avoid Kelly. In any case, Kelly agrees.

On the Jam-front, Jim buys his parents house for him and Pam--without telling her. "You haven't told the missus about the castle?" Andy says incredulously. When Creed finds out that Jim's new (old) house is near the quarry, he tells Jim that they're neighbors. "We should hang out and throw things in it," he says.

When Jim presents the house to Pam, he shows her how he's converting the garage into an art studio for her. He hopes this will mitigate the shag carpeting, the unmovable clown picture on the wall, the creepiness of sleeping in his parent's master bedroom. But Pam loves the house.

Ugly clown picture and all.

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