Dynasty Season 1 Episode 5 – TV Review
Sadly, nobody gets pushed into the fountain.
But somebody does get wet.
This is not a pun.
TL;DR Fallon and Cristal’s fighting circles back around to the COO position; Cristal struggles to prove herself as more than just the chick who banged her way to the top; Fallon loses her father’s respect; and falls further out with Jeff and Black Driver; Sam fucks an ex-boyfriend of Steven’s, but Steven give him a pity pass; Blake accidentally runs Claudia over.
Because this is a soap opera, and that kind of thing just happens, you know?
So it’s the ladies up first, as Fallon and Cristal both end up on a list for a Women in Business magazine cover thing. Fallon struggles because her new company with Jeff isn’t doing so hot, while Cristal struggles due to the leak of her sex tape, and a reality check from a fellow woman at Carrington Atlantic about how Cristal appears to the public: as the chick who banged her way to the top. Claudia, too, swans around and calls Cristal a slut. Fallon pulls the winning move, though, and threatens the magazine editor into picking her. But she’s not the real winner, as Blake turfs Fallon out of the house for her heartlessness; Black Driver rejects her apologies and doesn’t take her back; and Jeff is upset by Fallon’s selfishness. Again, honey: call mum. Get her here. Meanwhile, Cristal rallies and sets out to prove her business acumen. And apologise to Claudia, but Blake arrives just in time to run her down. Oh, no. Will she now get super amnesia? Meanwhile, an ex-boyfriend of Steven’s appears to ask both for Steven’s charity help (Steven’s working for the charitable arm of CA, remember?), and to get back into his bad. Sam finds out and feels threatened, and after a pep talk from Alan Dale of all people, he sleeps with the ex-boyfriend and has Steven stumble upon them. Miraculously, Steven chooses to forgive Sam for this due to Sam’s unfortunate (read: poor) life, and it turns out that Blake and Alan Dale had manipulated events to ensure the ex-boyfriend would go away. Because he was a drug addict who fucked Steven off last time, and they didn’t want Steven to have to put up with that shit again.
See? Blake really does love his (not dead) gay son.
Much like Riverdale this week, this episode of Dynasty seems to be mostly place-setting.
We circle back around to the Fallon/Cristal rivalry, but now their antics actually have consequences.
And, if my intuition is right, the greatest consequence of all will be the arrival of Alexis. The fact that she is namedropped again, and at another crucial character moment for Fallon, can’t be a coincidence.
Get your weave glue ready, people. I’m ready to meet my new Katherine Pierce.
Why I hate this episode:
The only concern about her inevitable arrival, really, is that Cristal will not be much of a match. She’s going all high road and #womengottasticktogether. No, girl. Stay petty.
Steven remains mired in subplots that only involve him and Sam. And the see-saw of their relationship is already exhausting after only five episodes. I want to see Fallon and Steven joining forces; see her corrupting him. The bitchiness factor on this show is nowhere near high enough.
And I don’t really understand how Steven decided to forgive Sam. At the outset of the episode, Steven was still mad at Sam for the robbery. So Sam then proceeds to fuck the ex-boyfriend (whom Steven had been planning to himself fuck), and a trite apology later and now everything is forgiven? It’s weird.
I truly hope Claudia dies, because I’m over it. Colleague got promptly taken out. Claudia’s gotta go, too. Stop dragging us down to upper middle class town.
Oh, and I’m surprised that Cristal is surprised when she learns Fallon is the one who leaked the sex tape. It’s like duh, baby.
But it’s not all bad:
This scene does lead into our fountain-adjacent slapstick Dynasty moment of the episode, though. Cristal doesn’t involve the fountain in her actions. But she does shake up and hose Fallon down with a bottle of champagne. These are the things that keep me coming back, Dynasty.
The episode, like the magazine cover, belongs to Fallon. As much fun as her rampant douchebaggery is, I also appreciate that this is a 2017 soap opera, and our stories need to have meaning and consequences. So to have Fallon’s cruelty rewarded with the conga line of rejection from Cristal (obv), Blake, Jeff, and Black Driver is pretty affecting.
Blake’s the big one, and he denounces her heartlessness as reminding him of the reason he got rid of her mother. She’s on her way, you guys. I know it.
While Fallon’s out being Miss Bitch, it falls to Cristal to again be the grounded, emotional force of the two. While I don’t come to the Dynasty reboot for nuanced musings on progressiveness, I did enjoy the episode’s take on Cristal’s job situation and how it makes women in business look. Kylie the PR girl butts heads with her pretty hard and does not hold back when she says that even if her promotion to COO was due to merit, that’s not how it looks. Claudia’s slut shaming is less tactful, but also true.
Cristal’s magnanimous resolution to this issue is even more admirable. She faces facts with the board (and Blake, who had earlier asked if she’d step down) and commits to proving herself. She promotes Kylie to her old job as head of PR, and discreetly warns the other woman in the room who had tried to usurp her that she better straighten up and fly right. Because a male boss wouldn’t be a doormat, so neither should Cristal. #work #werq
Blake gets the show’s best offscreen subplot, as it’s revealed that he and Alan Dale had manipulated Sam into fucking Steven’s ex-boyfriend. Because the last time he was around he was a raging drug addict and had taken an offer from Blake to be bought off to fuck off. And they didn’t want him back, sober or not, to risk Steven’s feelings again. Aww.
While I don’t buy it, Sam does make a compelling argument in his apology to Steven: having grown up underprivileged, when the ex-boyfriend apparently heaped on a sex invite in addition to a job offer, Sam didn’t think he could refuse. Again, I’m not sure Dynasty is the right venue for social commentary, but I do like that this kind of plot beat would typically go to a female character. It’s progressive. Let’s just keep it breezy, though.
Oh, and Fallon’s life may be falling apart, but she’s still keen to mug straight to the camera. Keep it kitschy, baby.