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‘Hart of Dixie’ Review: Where I Lead Me (aka the Destruction of Wade Continues)

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If last week’s Hart of Dixie was a travesty, then I’m not really sure what the right word is for this week’s. Is there a word that describes blind rage and also incorporates character assassination while explaining why we’re not allowed to have nice things? If there is, that is how I would describe “Where I Lead Me.”

To be honest, I missed a lot of the episode because of said rage issues so the recap portion of this review is going to be incredibly short. Here we go: Tansy continues to be awesome. She should be a series regular. Tom and Wanda are cute and they got married in the ultimate nerd wedding, but it was really sweet. George did something lawyerly for Lavon. Lemon was sad again (big surprise), but then Annabeth came through for her and they’re closer to being back on track. Some other stuff happened too, but it was not important.

Now, let’s get into the continuation from the horror that happened last week. It’s the day after the disastrous Battle of the Bands and Zoe shows up at Wade’s to apologize for missing it and bring him breakfast (in case you missed it, Zoe suddenly transformed into the best girlfriend ever). Wade wasn’t there so Zoe headed to check the Rammer Jammer. George and Tansy were there and they exchanged uncertain looks while Zoe worried and ate George’s breakfast. Then after agreeing to help Wanda with her mother, Zoe overheard people talking about Wade leaving the bar with some random woman.

But then Wade turned up in Zoe’s shower (shirtless Wade alert, people!). Zoe questioned him about what happened and Wade admitted that he did leave the bar with a woman, but it was only so he could jump her car battery. Then he was sad and drunk so he spent the night in his car in a field. Zoe apologized for putting too much pressure on him and he admitted that his band sucked. The two shared a kiss and were completely adorable, but I’m not new to watching TV and knew this was too good to be true.

Later, George went to talk to Wade about how he left the bar with a woman that was not Zoe Hart (Seriously, most of my dislike for George has disappeared, but why does he always refer to her by her full name? That’s annoying). Anyway, Wade told George that he already had this talk with Zoe and that he was stupid, but not that stupid. George was super relieved and as soon as he walked away, Wade looked guilty as sin and I had to refrain from throwing things through my TV. Sure enough, Tansy confirmed to George that Wade had used the car battery story on her in the past and while Zoe was talking to Wanda’s mom, she realized that Wade had lied to her (heavy-handed much, show?).

After the wedding, Wade confessed and he said that he was drunk and he didn’t know why he did it and he was sorry and he begged Zoe to forgive him. As much as I hated every second of this, Wilson Bethel was amazing in this scene and so was Rachel Bilson as she just sat there, crying with him and not saying anything. Then, she calmly got up and told Wade that they needed to get back to the wedding reception. It was heartbreaking to watch.

Once they got back inside, everyone seemed to know what Wade had done and he stood there looking completely ashamed. George was ready to punch him, but Tansy did Wade a favor and beat him to it. Lavon looked disappointed and then he tried to cheer up Zoe while Wade felt even worse when Tom was praising him for being such a good guy. Basically, the entire episode was a huge slap in the face to fans of the show, fans of Zoe and Wade and mostly, fans of Wade and Wilson Bethel.

I don’t get it. As I said before, I watch a lot of TV and I know Wade and Zoe cannot be together and happy all the time from Season 2 until the end of time. That’s not how things work and I can be fine with that. But give the audience a valid reason. Last week, in the span of one episode, Wade went from confident and charming to a liar and a cheater for no reason. Maybe if this had happened in the episode a few weeks back where Zoe basically said Wade didn’t understand what it was like to have a career, it would have made a little more sense. But to have Wade suddenly all messed up because Zoe is super supportive out of the blue? That is character assassination, plain and simple.

Why ruin the best character on the show? Wade has grown so much in two seasons and he was always a better person than anyone gave him credit for (see all of his scenes with Crazy Earl). He might have been a liar and a cheater in the past, but nothing he has done over the course of the show indicates that he would jeopardize his relationship with Zoe after he worked so hard to get her to admit that she cared about him and wanted him to be her boyfriend. He would not throw that away for a one night stand. IT DOESN’T MAKE ANY SENSE.

But fine; let’s go ahead and say that Wade was that drunk and that depressed. That was bad and terrible, but then he lied about it to Zoe and to George so that just makes him look even worse (Seriously, did Wilson Bethel kidnap someone’s dog or punch a baby or something?). So basically from this point on, Wade will have no one because George and Lavon will take Zoe’s side and Zoe hates him so if (and that’s a big if), Wade gets any storyline at all for the rest of the season, it will be him apologizing to Zoe or getting treated like a piece of dirt by everyone who crosses his path.

Ugh, I hate this show. Wade deserves better. Wilson Bethel deserves better. The fans deserve better. I have no idea what the writers are thinking, but I am not amused and I am not impressed. I’m also having a hard time caring whether or not the show gets renewed for another season after this. I definitely do not want to watch Zoe’s rebound relationship with Dr. I Forgot His Name Already, who reminds me of Season 1 George. I’m honestly offended that the show went from being so good to so awful so quickly.

(And yes, I am angry and emotional and I will probably be sitting here at the same time next week, writing about a new episode. But I still won’t be happy about the way Wade was treated). While we’re on the subject, who do we need to talk to about getting Wade his own spinoff that revolves around him and his brother Jesse (Justin Hartley, in case we’ve never met before)? That’s the show I want to watch.

About the author

Mandy Treccia

Mandy Treccia has served as TVSource Magazine’s Executive Editor since 2016, formerly as Editorial Director from 2012-2016. She is an avid TV watcher and card carrying fan girl prone to sudden bursts of emotion, ranging from extreme excitement to blind rage during her favorite shows and has on more than once occasion considered having a paper bag on hand to get her through some tough TV moments. Her taste in TV tends to rival that of a thirteen-year-old girl, but she’s okay with that. Follow her on Twitter at @SourceMandy.

  • barby

    I am mad aswell, and sad. I hope this is fixable, Wade has to start having more self confidence. In the end it seems it all happened because it was easier for him to stay as a bartender rather than growing and taking risks to improve his life. So maybe this was a tough lesson and he starts growing or he ends up like his father. I hope the writers don’t take away Wade from us, he’s such a rich and adorable character!!

  • ZadeSabotage

    Great post analysis of this train wreck of a show! I don’t know why but I have never been this upset over a television show before. Maybe because of the incredible chemistry between Wade and Zoe since the very first episode of the show. I know I am not the only person who feels this way. Hundreds of thousands of viewers watch the show because of Zade and now the writers have alienated over half of the show’s fan base. Way to go, writers!

    I’m actually laughing at the overwhelmingly negative responses from fans across the web from the HoD Facebook page to IMDB and all the message boards and reviews on TVFanatic and E! Online. 90% of the people commenting have just had their heart ripped by the writers and some people aren’t coming back until they explain why they did this to Wade’s character.

    I read a comment elsewhere on the web that said the writers had millions of other reasons to choose from to break up Zade but cheating is the ultimate sin. I completely agree. We all know this is just a television show, but why take a likable character whom the majority of watchers want Zoe to be with at the end of the series, and make him into an untrustworthy slimeball? We can take immaturity. Have him accidentally burn down someone’s house, go to jail over a drunken brawl, get into an argument with Zoe, anything besides cheating. Even some of the most loyal Zade fans can understandably no longer root for Zoe to get back with a cheater, even if it is Wade Kinsella.

    I personally hope that they get back together, but have the writers lost all morals? What kind of example are they setting for young girls of the show by telling them that it is okay to get back with a cheater? If this was a way for the writers to completely write-off a Zade ending, then their show is doomed. People will not continue to watch if Zoe has written off Wade completely to date George or the new doctor in town. No way. The writers have just succeeded in cancelling their own show.

  • I couldn’t agree more. I have loved Wade since day one, and have thought his chemistry with Zoe was insane from the beginning. I have waited forever (it seems) for them to get together, and when they finally did, they were the most adorable ever.

    But the last two episodes were so difficult to watch because of how much they ruined Wade’s character. It was stupid and poorly thought out. It makes it very difficult to root for him, and that sucks, because Wilson Bethel was amazing in them. I mean, his performance when he was telling Zoe what happened and how he didn’t want to lose her? I was almost mad at her for not forgiving him! THAT’S how brilliant WB’s performance was. I hope they figure out a way to save Zade, because I love them long time. So not interested in Zoe rebounding in like a minute with some random new character, even if he is almost (not close enough) as hot as Wade.

  • MM

    I agree WITH EVERYTHING! I understand that they would need to break up, this is tv after-all, but manner in which they completely annihilated Wade leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
    Why in heaven’s name would you treat one the most beloved characters like that. The conspiracy theorist in me thinks perhaps it is because Wilson *was* so popular. Urgh I don’t even know anymore.
    And YES please, the story of the Kinsella Fellas is one I would watch in a heartbeat.
    I have very little faith left in the writers. For now I’m done with this show. I may watch the last few episodes as a marathon after this season ends, but I cannot handle all this angst and awfulness anymore.

  • Sean

    I love your honesty and passion about the show. I do agree with you completely: Wade (Wilson) is the best character on the show, easily the fan favorite.

    I have to believe the writers dug themselves into a whole an couldn’t figure out how to make Wade and Zoe not work, so they took the shortest route: random sabotage of Wade. It’s sad.