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‘Hart of Dixie’ Review: Disastrous Dates and Unexpected Bonding

Eddy Chen/The CW

Last night’s Hart of Dixie episode was pretty close to perfect (perfect obviously would have included a Zoe and Wade scene). I have to admit that I wasn’t overly excited for this episode – the promos featuring Lemon and Zoe freaking out while getting ready for dates weren’t that engaging and then the episode had Wade at another Wilkes’ family event (lather, rinse, repeat), but “Back in the Saddle Again” proved to be exactly what I had no idea that I wanted and I fell in love with the show all over again.

First, let’s talk about Magnolia and how awesome it is every time she pops up in an episode. The youngest Breeland had escaped her grandmother’s clutches to ask Brick if she could attend a party hosted by Carter Covington. Needless to say her father was not okay with that idea and of course Magnolia went anyway. So Brick enlisted George to make a nine hour drive with him. George is still trying to deal with his newfound feelings for Lemon so he was not amused to find out that she was on a date with Peter (more on that later).

hart-of-dixie-318-saddle-01When they arrived at Carter’s, there was no party, but he showed them an e-vite that Magnolia had sent out for her annual ‘my dad’s out of town’ party. Brick realized once again that he was raising an evil genius and the two men headed back to Bluebell. By the time Brick got home, the party was over and Magnolia was in super cleaning mode, but the two finally had a talk that made her realize that Brick loves her and is concerned for her and just wants the best for her. It was the absolute cutest daddy-daughter moment and Brick agreed to send her to a new school and Magnolia promised to try harder.

Then there was AnnaBeth and her new boyfriend Davis. They were lying low because she wasn’t ready to let the town know that she was dating someone connected to Fillmore. But the secret was out when the mayor dropped by Lavon’s to taunt him over the news and let’s just say that Lavon did not take it well at all. He ended up getting drunk, ruining his bid to have the county fair in Bluebell and then he showed up on AnnaBeth’s doorstep and ranted about how her new boyfriend was just using her to hurt him. That was the last straw for AB.

Here’s what surprised me about these scenes. Last week, I had no sympathy for Lavon because he’d made his bed, but after this and seeing how much he’s genuinely hurting over this, I’m coming back around to his side. Don’t get me wrong: I’m still angry at what he did and he’s got a long way to go if he wants to make things up to AnnaBeth, but for the first time since their breakup, I want to see him try. I want to see him fight for her – but only if he’s completely sure she’s the woman he sees himself loving forever. I refuse to support anything that could lead to another heartbreak for AB. I’m rooting for you, Lavon, don’t blow it.

Speaking of things I’m rooting for, can we talk about the cracks that are starting to appear in Wade and Vivian’s relationship? I’m pretty much cackling with glee over them. Vivian is and always will be a mother first and while Wade does accept that, it also hurts him to have to fight for her attention. It doesn’t help that her ex-husband seems to be around more than ever and it’s pretty obvious Vivian would rather spend time with her family than hang out at a bar watching a band play. Again, Wade understands, but coming in second to her son is one thing – it’s coming in third behind her ex-husband that’s going to be their undoing.

Also worth noting: this episode proved without a shadow of a doubt that Wade is a changed man. Vivian left the bar early and a pretty woman offered Wade a fun night with her – the kind of fun night that cost him his relationship with Zoe. Wade made it clear that he wasn’t that guy anymore and then he walked away. This was perfect and not at all surprising because we’ve seen that Wade has learned from his mistakes. Now can we please have Wade and Zoe find their way back to each other? I think we’ve been pretty patient and it’s time for the payoff.

Greg Gayne/The CW

Greg Gayne/The CW

Zoe, of course, wasn’t having the best night either. After nearly being run over by a cocky cyclist, the doctor agreed to go on a date with him, even though she wasn’t sure she was ready to move on from Joel. She tried to get advice from AB and Brick, but they both pawned her off on Lemon, who was having her own man issues. Just as she swore off men, Peter returned to town and invited her to dinner. Remember Peter and how perfect he was on Halloween? He was exactly what Lemon had needed at the time and this episode proved that lightning does not strike twice.

The parallels between the two women’s dates were wonderful. Zoe’s guy was coming on strong and she was not as impressed by him as he was by himself. Peter started out sweet, mentioning that he’d requested to cover a story just so he could see Lemon again, but it was pretty obvious that he was only interested in recreating the physical part of the night they’d spent together. Zoe and Lemon were disappointed and they had no one to turn to so they reluctantly agreed to talk to each other at Zoe’s office.

After some false starts and literally covering their eyes so they didn’t have to think about whom they were talking to, Zoe and Lemon dropped all pretenses and acted like real friends. Zoe reminded Lemon that she believes in romance and wants the whole package and doesn’t have to settle for a one night stand. Lemon, in turn, reminded Zoe that she doesn’t have to date some jackass just to prove to herself that it only took three weeks to get over the longest relationship she’s ever had. They both returned to their dates and sent the men who were clearly wrong for them away.

Greg Gayne/The CW

Greg Gayne/The CW

The next day, George was relieved to hear that Lemon wasn’t getting involved with Peter again, but was disappointed when she had other plans and couldn’t spend time with him. Seeing George pine over Lemon is kind of the best thing ever. I never expected a day would come when I would ship these two together, but my love for them grows each week. I think it’s pretty fitting that Lemon realizes she wants love again, but hasn’t figured out that the perfect person for her might be George after all. I can’t wait to see how this plays out.

Meanwhile, Zoe decided to take a different step forward. She might not be ready to date random guys (and Wade’s not available yet), but she is ready to sell the house that she was supposed to live in with Joel. It’s a big step and I’m proud of Zoe for letting go because that shows that she has grown and learned from her mistakes as well (just like Wade). Seriously, this show is being pretty heavy handed with the foreshadowing and I’m okay with that because I very much like where it’s going.

Eddy Chen/The CW

Eddy Chen/The CW

I also really loved the last scene. Zoe and AnnaBeth were talking and Lemon showed up for her breakfast date with AB, who politely asked Zoe if they could finish their conversation later. But Lemon said Zoe could stay and sat down beside her in the booth. I don’t think these two are ever going to have the kind of friendship that they each have with AnnaBeth, but they made some major progress in this episode and I absolutely loved it. This was such a cute episode.

Next week, chaos ensues once more because it’s Bluebell and this is how the town works. Check out the promo and then hit the comments and share your thoughts with us. Did you enjoy the episode? Which couples do you want to see happen (or happen again)?

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.

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1 Comment

  1. I just keep wondering how Zade is going to happen in just 4 episodes – and happen realistically and to a level of satisfaction fans have been waiting (and waiting and waiting!) for all season. I’ll be pretty peeved if all we get is the flirts from those two! But they’ve barely spoken to each other all season, so how could the writers realistically throw in something like, say, a love confession and have it really meaningful in the time remaining?
    I’m surprised by how much I like Lemon/George this time around, too, though, I did also really like Peter. He made her so happy at Hallow’een, it was lovely to see! I think the writers could have made the pair work quite well, but it seems they’re going to back Lemon/George. Plus, George has been a bit sidelined this season and pairing him back with Lemon centralises him again. Plus plus, I wasn’t really invested with George’s past relationships, including Tansy. I just wasn’t seeing the chemistry there, but with Lemon, there’s something certainly brewing, so If the writers can make it work, I’m all for it!

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