Episode 206: "Not So Shore"

Should've been called: Fight Club


Bang! Biff! Zowie!

I went to watch an episode of "Jersey Shore" and an episode of "Batman" broke out. Granted, it took about 59 minutes to happen, but when it did -- Jenni up in Sammi's grill, Sammi refusing to back down to Jenni The Enforcer - it was well worth the price of admission.

Jenni grabs Sammi with both hands and shoves her. Sammi makes her move. Jenni gets her on the floor. They're separated. You think it might be a quick KO in Jenni's favor, like Ali/Liston II, when - WHAM! - Sammi's back for more, throwing a punch as the camera cuts away and the episode ends.

But this is only the beginning. In more ways than one. Because as the sixth episode in "Jersey Shore's" season comes to a close, marking the midpoint in the season, what should appear but an episode of "Jersey Shore After Hours." (Had no idea that was coming, throwing everything about this week's recap off.)

So, for the next half hour, we see a VERY uncomfortable quartet - Ronnie, Sammi, Snooki and Jenni - get grilled by Julissa Bermudez in front of an audience. And that's what we'll focus on here. She's no Mike Wallace, mind you, but she does ask some of the questions I've been wondering about for weeks:

To Ron: "After seeing your behavior, what do you have to say for yourself?"

To Sammi: How was it watching all of this unfold on television?

To Ron: "Why would you treat Sammi like this?"

To Snooki and J-Woww, about Sammi: "How did your friendship unravel"; "Why write a letter" instead of saying something to her face?

To Sammi, about Snooki and J-Woww: "Do you understand the position they're in?"

Happiest people on Earth? Pauly, Mike, Vinny and Angelina, for not having to sit through this. Though, knowing Mike, he'd probably be laughing it up in the background.

Not that he was laughing much given one of his hook ups in last night's episode. But that, like everything else, is trumped by The Fight. Which, for the record, came courtesy Angelina screwin' around and getting called on it by Vinny. That Sammi and Jenni had issues that needed to be dealt with takes her off the hook as the episode ends, though it seems as if she'll be paying for her role in the festivities soon enough.

There was other goodness to this episode, one that ranks right up there with last weeks in terms of sheer entertainment value. (How many instances can you count when Jenni was about to throw a punch before she actually, you know, threw a punch? Quite a few, I think). But they're all trumped by the "After Hours" party.

First out is Ronnie, asked to defend his behavior. He squirms as well in front of a studio audience as he does in the house, be it Miami or Seaside. "Uh, I think I was in the wrong in going back to her at night," he says about Creepin' at the clubs then slipping between the sheets with Sammi... before he was discovered. "But I wasn't with her. I was single, so, I mean, you're my ex girlfriend for a reason."

Editor's note: Except when I snuggle with you and tell you I love you and want you to be my woman... Until the next night at the club. ...

We got generous helpings of he said-she said between the two ... um, what do we call them, exactly? Not lovebirds. Not friends with benefits. Not mortal enemies. Exes? Really bad exes, I suppose. Feel free to suggest your own description.

And another thing: Ron says Sammi cheated on him first. She says no way. He says she embarrassed him in Jersey by kissing Mike? As in Situation? Not that I remember seeing... What they need to do is get the camera crew to spill some dirt. Then we'll get all the answers we need. Because these to crazy cats? They just keep confusing the issue...

Given her chance to refute RonRon, Sammi looked every bit as disgusted as she said she was. "You played me out. You played me out," she says at one point. "That's the way I reacted. That's me," Ronnie replies.

"That's not me," Sammi fires back. "That's not love. That's not love."

Then she hits him with the kicker: What do you like better, being single or being with me.

Ronnie: "I don't even know." BOOM! Magro retaliates with a right cross and Sammi's going down!

But wait, there's more! Julissa brings out Snooki and J-Woww to revisit The Letter.

Julissa: Why write a letter?

Jenni: "We didn't want to jeopardize our relationship with Ron."

Sammi: "That was more important though than your relationship with me?"

Ronnie: "Technically, I was friends with them since the beginning. I've been friends with Jenni since Jersey."

Wait a sec... Was Sammi not among the first to arrive at the beach house in Seaside Heights? Was she some kind of house leper until she got together with Ron... No, no room for two; Angelina was already playing that role. OK, back to the conversation.

Jenni: "Yeah -"

Ronnie: "Jenni's the one who told me you gave your number out to the cop (true, but if memory serves it was in a platonic kind of way). I was there for Snooki when she wanted to leave..."

Sammi: "But still, these were my girls at the time -"

It goes on... and on... and on... because while this special was only a half hour, that's still plenty of time to wallow in SamRon drama. You'd think by now they'd have had enough of one another. And yet they continue to leave the door open for reconciliation - there's even a shot of them kissing -- KISSING! -- when he drops Sammi and Angelina off at the gelato shop during the episode. I swear they've got train wreck marriage and quickie divorce tattooed all over them.

And now, time for a little detour. Remember earlier this week, I wrote about how you could tell what would happen this season by looking at the promotional photos? Well, did you catch the body language on the foursome on "After Hours"? I've seen livestock that look more comfortable on their way to slaughter.

Ronnie? He was trying to make the best of the situation. And at least they let him out first, because public sentiment was clearly on Sammi's side. He was, after all, the only one of the four to get booed during the half hour. He squirmed, he fidgeted, he went on the offensive, trying to blame Sammi for it all ... much as he's done on the show. Good for him, he manned up about the error in sleeping with Sammi after hitting on other chicks. But I think it's a matter of too little, too late...

Sammi? Looked like she'd been hit by a truck. Put her game face on to get in Ronnie's grill, and apologized to Snooki and Jenni for badmouthing them - something we hadn't really seen up to this point. Still, a stiff, awkward place for her to be....

Snooki? Totally there for the applause. Contributed a couple of lines, but mostly seemed to be there to act as a buffer between Sammi and Jenni...

Jenni? Looked like she was in serious pain, not at all eager to relive any of this stuff. In fact, best part of the post-show mini reunion had to be the clips of Ronnie Creepin' and Jenni and Snooki writing The Letter ... because in the lower left corner of the screen you could see their reactions as the clips played. To see wincing elevated to an art form, find someone who DVRd the episode.

Maybe the most interesting thing is that at the end of "After Hours" we find out what we saw tonight is only the beginning of the fisticuffs. Makes me wonder how crazy next week is going to get, and whether Mike tries to intervene, or pops a bag of popcorn and plops on the couch to catch the show. Before we can go there, though, we have to revisit everything else that happened this week. And there was a lot of it, from Snooki and Vinny getting it on again, to Vinny getting together, again, with Mike's sister Melissa, to how exactly it takes three hours - or four, depending on how you're telling the story - to shop for groceries? Look for all that and more during tomorrow's "Jersey Shore" revisited recap.

Until then, here's your Magic 8 Ball question of the week: Oh Magic 8 Ball, will Jenni and Sammi's friendship survive this week's cat fight?

Answer: Don't Count On It

Magic 8 Ball's all aces so far this season; no reason to doubt it now.

What did you think of tonight's episode. More importantly, did you catch the "After Hours" special? Could there be 30 more awkward minutes of television out there?