Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Season 2 Episode 8 Review: Zoey's Extraordinary Birthday

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So we need to talk about that kiss.

Everything else that happened on Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Season 2 Episode 8 is secondary to Zoey and Simon locking lips at the end of the episode.

We could see it coming from a mile away, but just because we knew it was on the horizon doesn't necessarily mean it's what Zoey or we needed.

Zoey birthday - Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Season 2 Episode 8

The biggest problem about that kiss is what it represents, as it can't just be a spur of the moment, happy birthday kiss between the pair. 

No, this kiss is about to create a whole lot of unnecessary drama and mess, no matter how maturely Zoey believes she is now that she's 30.

This hot and heavy smooch means the possibility of reintroducing the Zoey/Simon/Max love triangle, and I can't be alone in not wanting to spend the rest of the season watching Zoey trying to decide what guy she wants to date.

It's repetitive and unoriginal, and Zoey has so much more to offer than simply being a lovestruck woman.

Zoey talking - Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Season 2 Episode 8

Another fear, which Max alluded to in the installment, is that his relationship with Zoey meant absolutely nothing and was no more than an obstacle on the writers' part to prolong Zoey and Simon getting together.

Zoey and Max never really got a chance as a couple, and this pause was supposed to be an opportunity for Zoey to get her head on straight before diving into something with Max.

Zoey: I don’t know what the worst part was: How they sang together, how they danced together, or how Max looked at her, singing and dancing together.
Mo: I get it. I hate when I see white people dance too, but when’s the last time you and Max talked about your relationship status?
Zoey: What are you talking about?
Mo: Well, clearly, he’s thinking of somebody else, and to be fair, you’ve also been thinking of somebody else.
Zoey: I have? Who?
Mo: What about that cute Australian boytoy of yours?
Zoey: OK, we’re just friends.
Mo: And there’s not a day that goes by that you and Simon do that little dance you do.
Zoey: What is your point?
Mo: OK, defensive. All I’m saying is you can vibe with whoever you want to vibe with. I mean what are the rules on your pause?
Zoey: There aren’t any that I’m aware of.
Mo: So, you’re mad at Max because he broke rules that don’t exist.
Zoey: I’m not mad. I am maybe a little but surprised that he had those feelings for someone else.
Mo: Oh so you thought he was gonna sit around and wait for you to make a decision?
Zoey: It sounds unfair when you put it like that.

However, if she immediately starts things with Simon, what does that say about her time with Max? That she's now ready for a relationship but not with him.

Lastly, is Zoey genuinely ready for a romantic relationship, or is this just reactionary to Max vibing with Rose?

If it's the latter, that's a pretty shitty thing to do with Simon, who has been nothing but supportive of her since the beginning.

Max attend - Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Season 2 Episode 8

It was naive of Zoey to expect Max to sit around while she worked out her feelings, and then she had the audacity to act outraged that Max broke the nonexistent rules of their pause.

Therefore, it made her declaration to Max about having feelings for Simon, which is true, feel like something a jealous ex would boast about, not someone who's simply updating her best friend on her love life.

One has to wonder if she's pursuing something with Simon to either keep pace with Max or make him jealous somehow?

She has feelings for Simon, but it's unclear if she's being driven solely by desire.

With all that said, I'll admit that I'm not completely against the idea of Zoey and Simon starting something as long as a) it's for the right reasons, b) it doesn't take away from what she had with Max, and c) the love triangle stays dead.

Simon attend - Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Season 2 Episode 8

The pair have a much more solid foundation built on friendship this time around, and Simon isn't just getting out of a serious relationship.

Both have grown since their last romantic encounter and are in a different place than before.

Zoey: I feel like we should talk about where things stand. What the rules of engagement are for our current pause and just make sure, we’re following the same protocols.
Max: OK, feels natural. Is there any particular reason?
Zoey: Well, I heard you sing a heart song last night at Maximo’s, a sexy duet with Rose.
Max: Rose and I sang together?
Zoey: Yeah, well clearly you guys have feelings for each other, right?
Max: I don’t know. This is all news to me, and honestly, I’m still trying to figure it out, but as usual, you’ve already downloaded my innermost thoughts right into your brain. Also, why are you even asking me? Are you ready to stop our pause ‘cause I’m happy to have that conversation, but if not, then I don’t know what we’re doing here.
Zoey: I’m just trying to make sure that we’re not messing it up, you know, messing us up. I think it’s important for both of us to be clear about our expectations when it comes to other people right now.
Max: OK, what other people are in your world right now, Zoey?
Zoey: I had this one flirty thing with this neighbor kid. He’s not a kid, exactly, but also a thing is way too strong a word. It was basically nothing now that I’m talking about it, but in the spirit of this honest conversation, I feel like I should mention that maybe I’m starting to have feelings for Simon again.
Max: I’m sorry, what?
Zoey: Nothing has happened, and I don’t know if anything will happen.
Max: I don’t like the sound of that.
Zoey: Well, it’s not about what you like, Max. I’m just trying to be mature and honest with you about what I’m feeling.

Best of all, Zoey has a better understanding of who Simon is as a Black man, and their frank and honest discussion about something other than their dead fathers proved these two are capable of having difficult conversations.

Their initial attraction is still there, but it's been amplified tenfold, as Zoey and Simon have gotten to know each other and become better friends.

It's not a bad place to start a relationship, and if not for Zoey having picked Max first, I'd be ready to hop aboard the bandwagon.

Zoey and Simon - Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Season 2 Episode 8

And on the subject of love triangles, we should count our blessings that it didn't turn into a love quadrangle after Aiden confessed his lust for Zoey in the most inappropriate way.

It was creepy watching Aiden try to serenade Zoey and then some with David singing backup and playing keyboard.

Fortunately, Zoey was mature, like she was trying to be, and upfront with Aiden about her feelings in letting him know it was never going to happen.

It was a definite blow to Aiden, but something tells me he'll be fine in the long run. It's not like he and Zoey were that close, to begin with, and he seemed more to have a schoolgirl crush on her than being head over heels in love.

A guitar-playing Australian with hair like his will surely bounce back pretty fast.

Mo attend - Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Season 2 Episode 8

Elsewhere, Mo and Perry hit a bump in their relationship after Mo learned Perry is divorced and has children.

For someone in their 20s, who's never been in an adult relationship before, Mo's reaction was pretty spot on, as most millennials would be somewhat freaked to learn their significant other has that sort of baggage.

Perry: I got to go pick up something from my ex-husband.
Mo: I don’t think I’ve ever dated a divorced guy before.
Perry: Turns out this is the flip side of marriage equality.
Mo: So what are you picking up?
Perry: Oh just my kids.
Mo: As in little baby goats?
Perry: As in humans who are 9 and 7.
Mo: Oh, interesting.
Perry: That’s not something I usually bring up right away unless I like someone. Is that an issue for you?
Mo: No. You liking me, I like that part.
Perry: Well, the kids and I are kind of a package deal, and I’m in the stage in my life where I’m not just looking for some hookup. So, you have my number. Feel free to call me if I didn’t just scare you away.

Mo and Perry are at different points in their lives, and both have to figure out if this is something they can make work.

Perry has been through this before, but this is a different kind of relationship for Mo, and he has to figure out whether Perry's past is a dealbreaker or not.

It's a lot to take on, but so far, Mo has handled the situation maturely, which is a promising sign. Plus, he's never been happier, so that's also good news.

David and Emily smile - Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Season 2 Episode 8

Some stray thoughts:

  • Are we supposed to believe that David, a former lawyer, didn't put it together that Aiden's song was about Zoey? How many other redheaded neighbors on their street are there?

  • Max handled everything Zoey threw at him with such grace. Yes, he got angry when Zoey bombarded him with his feelings about Rose and the news that Zoey was into Simon again, but considering their past, Max's reactions were perfectly acceptable.

  • It's been a minute since we've seen Maggie. Where has the Clarke matriarch been hiding? Emily, on the other hand, can stay away. She barely adds anything to the story other than being David's wife.

  • Tobin and McKenzie are pretty cute together. That is all.

So what did you think, TV Fanatics?

Are you on board with Zoey and Simon?

Do you feel bad for Max?

What are your thoughts on Mo and Perry?

Don't forget to hit the comments below to let me know your thoughts. If you missed the most recent episode, remember you can watch Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist online at TV Fanatic.

Zoey's Extraordinary Birthday Review

Editor Rating: 4.3 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.1 / 5.0 (10 Votes)

Jessica Lerner was a staff writer for TV Fanatic. She retired in October 2021.

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Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Season 2 Episode 8 Quotes

Mo: Thoughts?
Perry: You’re good to go, but you probably didn’t need a certified fire marshal to come all the way out here for that.
Mo: Better safe than sorry, right?
Perry: It is, but if what you wanted was to see me again, you could have just asked me on a proper date.
Mo: Huh? Could have done that.
Perry: I would have said yes. Hope to hear from you soon.

Zoey: Even if it was a thing, I wouldn’t need a whole week. I don’t need a whole day. It’s so soon after dad, I don’t want people making a fuss over me.
Maggie: You’re turning 30, and it is a big deal. You know what your father would say if he were here right now.
Zoey and David: Bigger moments, bigger memories.
Maggie: That is correct. I’m sure he’d be setting up the fireworks display and hurrying a marching band.
Zoey: Putting a jumpy castle in the backyard..
David: That was the best 21st birthday a boy could ever ask for.
Zoey: OK, I guess it wouldn’t be the worst idea to honor his legacy with an engagement that some might classify as a party.