A successful recall petition is followed by tragedy on episode of 8 of Sweet Magnolias season three.
Sweet Magnolias Season 2 Episode 8
“The Rules of the Game”
Written by: Caron Tschampion
Directed by Yangzom Brauen
The relationship drama continues in Sweet Magnolias S2E8. Maddie and Cal attend the fancy fundraiser party. Kyle surrounds himself with sweet girls while Ty struggles in his relationship with CeCe. Jackson gets serious about wanting to date Annie while her parents struggle to agree on the status of their own relationship. Meanwhile, the signatures are rolling in for the recall petition.
Let’s take a closer look at the events in “The Rules of the Game” on Sweet Magnolias.
Kyle on the mend
Kyle appears to be on the mend, not just physically, but emotionally as well. He is having fun acting out story ideas for the video game with Sophie at the spa.
Maddie walks in and says hello. She seems like it warms her heart to see Kyle having a good time after all he’s been through. He is, however, supposed to be working.
Sophie says goodbye to “Puck” and “Puck’s mom” and leaves the spa.
Here to stay
Isaac walks in while Noreen is working on a to do list. He’s impressed that Rebecca is napping. Noreen has made coffee and gives a cup to Isaac. She promises to give him the recipe when she gets her own place.
Isaac acknowledges that Noreen has a lot on her plate and encourages her to stay longer if he wants to. She comments on how strange it must be living with a baby and a first-time mom. Isaac says that is not a worry and recalls the applicant with the pet chickens.
CeCe brings more signatures for the recall petition to Helen’s home office. Maddie and Helen are impressed with CeCe’s results. The young assistant tells them she shared a personal story to engage people. She learned that most people had stories of their own about Mayor Lewis falling short of their expectations.
Maddie says that CeCe reminds her of Helen when she was CeCe’s age. As CeCe listens to the two women talking about their long friendship, she comments on how she would like to have friends like them. She struggles because the girls in town do not seem to be able to relate to CeCe.
CeCe asks Helen what qualifications would be good for a mayoral candidate. When Helen mentions a law degree, CeCe hints that Helen should run for mayor.
Ronnie, Dana Sue, and Annie attempt to discuss the awkwardness of Annie walking in on the couple in the heat of passion the night before. Annie does not want to talk about it and asks why they did not tell her they were reunited.
Annie receives mixed signals when Ronnie suggests they were waiting to tell her while Dana Sue denies that they are even back together. Their failure to be on the same page frustrates Annie even further. She fears that her parents’ relationship is not actually better despite their physical interests.
Annie asks to leave the room and the discussion.
Helen’s not “okay”
Helen and Erik leave her latest appointment with the fertility specialist in Charleston. She tries to accept the fact that the doctor only found 7 follicles. Helen tells Erik that she is “okay”, but he is not convinced.
Helen reveals her frustration with not being able to control her IVF success no matter how hard she tries to do all the right things. She begins to cry, and Erik talks to her about faith. Helen finds Erik’s words helpful, and they decide to do something fun.
Consider something new
Cal and Ty are lifting weights on Maddie’s porch. Ty tells Cal that CeCe is not returning replying to his messages. When Cal suggests waiting for her to respond, Ty becomes frustrated and shares that he is always being asked to wait for things, for his injury to heal, and so on.
Cal encourages Ty to focus on something he can control. The coach talks about his own experience with a career change and warns Ty not to limit his choices to one thing. Cal wonders if there is something else Ty may want to pursue instead of only baseball.
An apology and a request
Annie is confiding in Jackson during her break at the restaurant. She tells him how awful she felt walking in on her parents the night before. She talks about her frustration with her parents being secretive about their feelings.
Dana Sue comes over and points out that Annie is late returning from her break. As Dana Sue escorts Annie back to work, she tells Annie that she should not be sharing family business.
Jackson returns later to apologize to Dana Sue for his part in Annie being late to return from her break. Dana Sue points out that it was Annie’s responsibility. Then Jackson asks for Dana Sue’s permission to ask Annie out on an official date.
After reminding Jackson that there are rules to be followed, she gives her consent. Dana Sue tells him that it’s up to Annie to say yes or no to the date.
All dressed up with somewhere to go
Cal and Maddie arrive to the St. Jude’s fundraiser in Charleston. They make a gorgeous couple with Cal in his white tuxedo and Maddie in a strapless dress with her hair pulled back.
We are then treated to a fabulous cameo of actress JoAnna Garcia Swisher’s husband, and former baseball player, Nick Swisher complimenting Maddie on her beauty.
Cal and Maddie enjoy dancing in the beautiful setting. Cal explains that his ex-wife Victoria enjoyed the high-profile events more than he did. Now it’s time for Cal to greet fans and take photos.
Maddie gets the scoop
Cal is thrilled to see former publicist Jodie at the fundraiser. She, too, is excited to see him. Jodie reminds Cal that it is time for photos. She tells him that she will hang out with Maddie while he greets the fans.
Maddie’s interest is piqued when Jodie describes Cal as formerly being “a handful” at times in the past. Jodie notices a difference in Cal and suspects that Maddie has been a good influence on him. Maddie insists that Cal get all the credit for being a good man.
Jodie shares with Maddie that Cal’s ex used to start trouble and take credit for his success. It sounds like Victoria was rather self-centered.
A fan request
Cal returns from taking photos and Maddie tells him Jodie shared his habit of putting iced coffee on his cereal instead of milk. Cal defends his choice as being a practical one.
The couple returns to the dance floor when a fan approaches Cal with a request. He wants Kyle to sign his baseball card. The fan introduces himself as Stu and shares a special memory of going to a game with his late father. Cal made a winning catch in that game and meeting Cal means a lot to Stu. The former shortstop signs the card and connects with Stu about the death of his own father.
Cal and Maddie dance and talk about how thankful they are for each other. They share a kiss in front of everyone.
Back at home
Meanwhile, Sophie and a friend named Willow are at Kyle’s house working on ideas for the video game. Ty walks in to say hello and offer the teenagers some root beer. Willow appears smitten with Ty as she stares at him.
Kyle joins Ty in the kitchen. Ty tells Kyle that he is glad Kyle is hanging out with friends and comments that Sophie is “cute”. In fact, he admits he may be a “little jealous”. He shares that Gabe is the only friend hanging out with him right now.
Kyle talks about the benefits of their dad not seeming as invested in Kyle’s hobbies the way Bill was so involved with Ty’s baseball career. Ty says he is looking for something else to focus on.
What’s the holdup?
Ronnie comes to Sullivan’s and asks Dana Sue why she is delaying a decision about the status of their marriage. Dana Sue says she is not happy about Ronnie confronting her about this in the middle of work.
Dana Sue insists that their rekindled passion is just based on nostalgia. Ronnie says it is based on “truth and connection”. Again, Dana Sue downplays their reconnection saying “chemistry” is not enough to salvage their marriage.
Ronnie then asks her why she thinks he is the only that needs to change and exits the restaurant.
Presumably the next day, Maddie is in the kitchen while Katie makes a card for her new sibling, baby Rebecca. Ty says he is not interested in visiting Noreen. Paula reminds Ty that he should not base his feeling about Rebecca on her parents’ mistakes.
Annie and Jackson walk along the river and Jackson asks her to go on an official date. She says yes but tells him she must get to work. They steal multiple kisses as Annie tries to leave for her job.
Peggy and Winell
Peggy is at her mom’s house discussing staffing issues at the paper. In a surprising moment of compassion, Winell shares her concern about wanting a particular staff member to keep his job because his wife is sick. She wants Peggy to give him the extra guidance he may need.
Peggy announces that she will tell the father about Isaac. Winell insists that is a bad idea and reminds her that was trying to protect them by keeping the pregnancy a secret. Peggy declares that her mother was only trying to protect her own reputation.
Winell calls Peggy foolish if she thinks Isaac’s father would have stayed in a relationship with her had he known about the pregnancy. Peggy’s mom warns her not to follow through with telling the father about Isaac.
Peggy says she must follow her heart. She then turns the tables on her mother and claims that it was it means to be a good mother.
Erik and Helen are walking along a waterfront as Helen recalls a childhood memory. They begin kissing. When things heat up, Helen suggests they go somewhere private. Erik says he thinks they should wait on that to avoid unnecessary complications in their relationship right now.
He points out that Helen’s IVF journey is going on while they are exploring themselves as a couple. E rikdescribes those two journeys as being “parallel but separate”. He assures Helen that he is totally smitten with her and says they can find other ways to experience “intimacy” for now.
More and more signatures
Cal and Maddie return to Maddie’s house after successfully collecting more signatures for the recall petition. Maddie tells Cal that his influence certainly helped, plus agreeing to photos with fans.
Shortly after, Paula and Katie arrive home with a lot of signatures as well. Then Grace and Frances come inside reporting their volume of signatures.
They all celebrate their progress in moving towards change for the town.
Isaac returns home from the restaurant to find Noreen doing dishes with Rebecca strapped to her in the baby carrier. He tells her he will finish the dishes later.
Noreen shares that she is feeling like she’s not doing the best job as a new mother. She is happy that the Townsend kids came to visit. Isaac assures her that he and many others are there to support her.
Isaac tells her about being adopted. He points out that his parents were loving and that’s what’s most important. He reminds her that they are both trying to figure new things out, so maybe she should continue living at his house. She agrees if she pays full rent. Of course, Isaac is fine with that.
The ladies share margaritas at Sullivan’s after hours. Maddie reveals that she thought it was “hot” watching Cal do his celebrity thing at the St. Jude’s fundraiser and then again with collecting signatures for the petition.
Helen shares her decision with Erik to wait on having sex. Speaking of sex, Dana Sue claims that may have started the current problem she is having with Ron. She goes on to tell them that Ronnie had the gall to call her inflexible. Helen and Maddie are honest friends and admit that Dana Sue is not always the most flexible.
Dana sure is not what to do next about Ronnie. Maddie asks her friend, “What are you afraid of Dana Sue?”
The more the merrier
Kyle and Sophie are on the porch looking at character costumes. Nellie rides up on her back. Kyle asks her to join them. Sophie does not know Nellie but knows her dad is the mayor.
Nellie sits at the table with them and asks if the game is anything like “Cuphead” knowing that Kyle is good at that game. Kyle explains it is a different style of game and welcomes Nellie to help with their ideas.
A thank you
Peggy talks to Helen at the spa. She asks Helen about the recall petition. Helen shares that the signatures are being verified.
Peggy goes to leave but turns back to Helen. She thanks Helen for bringing Isaac to her. Helen is visibly moved by the sentiment.
Dana Sue and Ronnie are at the house talking about Jackson and Annie going on a date. Ronnie says it is important that they talk about themselves.
Dana Sue admits she is afraid that she cannot trust him. Ronnie is afraid Dana Sue will never forgive him. He tells her that he spoke to Pastor June about the two of them having counseling sessions with her.
CeCe and Ty meet by the river. CeCe believes Ty is unable to let go of his childhood crush on Annie. He disagrees and apologizes for upsetting her. CeCe accepts his apology, but Ty he wonders why CeCe does not also apologize.
CeCe wonders why he is complicating things. Ty doesn’t see why their problems are all his fault. Finally, CeCe shares something she has heard from her mother, “At some point, you gotta decide whether you’re spending more on repairs than the car’s worth.” She walks away.
A final toast
Grace, Frances, Paula, Maddie, Helen and Dana Sue are at the Sullivan’s bar celebrating getting enough signatures for the recall.
Frances congratulates them and shares her gratitude to the Sweet Magnolias for carrying on a legacy to keep the town kind and fair. But Frances looks a little uneasy. As the women share another toast, Frances drops her glass and falls. Helen looks down horrified.
- Fan Stu approaches Cal to autograph his baseball card at the fundraiser. When Stu describes how baseball was something he and his later father shared, he tells Cal that they had been going to games together since Stu was “knee-high to a duck”.
- Dana Sue admits her fears to Ronnie saying, “I’m scared. That is what is holding me back. Pure 200-proof fear.”
Food for Thought
- Noreen is making some progress getting Rebecca to nap. If you are a parent or caregiver, what are your best tips for getting a newborn to nap. I seem to recall nursing or taking a bottle to be conducive to baby sleep. Now, sleeping through the night? That’s a whole different ballgame.
- Peggy stands up to her mother insisting she will tell Isaac’s birth father about him. How else do you think Peggy’s mom’s actions have impacted Peggy’s life and decisions?
Stay tuned for our ongoing coverage of Sweet Magnolias with recaps, trivia and interviews!
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