Once and Again

Season 3 Episode 14

The Gay-Straight Alliance

Aired Unknown Mar 11, 2002 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (2)

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  • Sense and Sensibility

    The Gay-Straight Alliance serves as frame for Jessie and Grace respective love stories, the gay half of the alliance struggling with her feelings over Katie, meanwhile the straight half is not struggling at all with the newfound connection to her english teacher.

    To be completely fair to Grace, Mr. Dimitri is not exactly helpful, chuckling at their "So, I was thinking of doing some teaching. What do you say?" private joke, after he offers her a casual ride home in which she invites herself & the entire alliance over to his house, something that Jessie finds as disturbing as the sight of Katie joining the meeting to spend time with her.

    Contrary to what Lily believes, neither her daughter nor her teacher act like gay people around each other, the tension building up until Grace finds him with another woman, just when she was about to tell him how she fells. It would've been the end of it, if not for Gay-Straight Alliance presentation the next day. Unlike Mr. Dimitri, Katie has no problems to tell Jessie how she feels. Unlike Grace, Jessie is not upset so Katie and Jessie share their first kiss, with the earnest devotion Mr. Dimitri wishes he could share private jokes with Grace, the book of poems he wrote on his twenties, a ride home every now and then or long conversations that'd last for hours but he can't do that. They can't be friends.

    Grace pointedly asks about the woman she found in his house, despite she can't do that. Mr. Dimitri tells her the woman is not his girlfriend, despite he can't do that. They both share a moment, despite are not allowed. As they lean in for a kiss, despite they can't do that, Lily taps the window of the car, as clueless as ever. Grace's mother thanks Mr. Dimitri for bringing Grace home as the straight half of the alliance rushes upstairs to Jessie's bedroom. The Gay-Straight Alliance blissfully aware that, in this instance, they are complete equals.
  • In this episode, the extended Sammler/Manning family gossip behind step-sisters Jessie's and Gracie's backs as ever-involved Gracie becomes obsessed with the Gay/Straight Alliance, but not for the reasons the family members think. Also, Jessie's friendsh

    In one of a handful of the most poignant episodes in a series in which all but a few of the sixty-three episodes were extremely poignant, Grace (Julia Whelan) immerses herself in an advocacy group at the school, the Gay/Straight alliance, but not for the reasons that the writers of the show initially hint at. While Gracie is always preaching "That people should be able to LOVE whoever they want to LOVE...", her reason for interest in the club is her crush in its faculty advisor, Mr. August Dmitri (Eric Stoltz). Meanwhile, after telling Grace that her proclomation that Jess's best friend Katie is gay is ludicrous and being offended at the mere suggestion, it becomes clear throughout the episode that Katie DOES indeed have a crush on Jess, that the family could not be more wrong about the intentions of Grace, and that Jess is unsure of how she feels about Katie - but whatever she is feeling it is certainly much more intense than her feelings towards her 'boyfriend' Tad. Episode filled with some great acting and some as activist Grace and the more private Jess have a screaming match in the bathroom (after Grace hands a private note to Jess when it becomes evident to Katie that she is intentionally avoiding her and Jess accused Grace of having read the private correspondence) with each one calling the other out on what each is unwilling to admit to herself. Very cute but realistic symmetry the following day as both play ill but Rick allows daddy's girl Jess to stay home as Lily tells Grace to get herself to school. Episode ends with Grace happy as she gets a car ride home from Mr. Dmitri and despite his declarations she knows he shares feelings for her. So as Grace enters the house Lily asks a knowing Grace to bring cough drops up to Jess, who enters the attic to find Katie and Jess jumping up from what was clearly a compromising situation and she offers her the drops and shares a smile with Jess as they both mention that they feel better -- each dealing with their own forbidden love in very different ways as each is a very different circumstance. The episode ends with Grace walking down the stairs from the attic with an 'all is right in the world' grin worth a thousand words and with Jess retiring back to her bed overwhelmed and overjoyed at having just shared her heart and a kiss with Katie, and Jess seems okay with the fact that Grace knows as their relationship seems to be growing into a sisterly love and admiration for one another. The Best Hour Of Television I Have Ever Witnessed!
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