Last week ended on a HUGE cliffhanger with Megan (Sadie Stanley) receiving a letter from Isbella’s (KaDee Strickland) friend, Trevor (Olly Sholotan). Inside were newspaper clippings about the mysterious Lisa and her drowning in St. Barts! My worry for this week was that we would never come back to this wild news until the very end. That said, Cruel Summer, “The Plunge” did not disappoint!
Cruel Summer – Summer 1999
After Megan’s confession of love for Luke to Isabella she wastes no time ending things with him so that Megan could have a chance. According to Isabella he was surprised (I mean, they just had sex), but took it pretty well. Fun fact, she did this the day before Luke’s birthday. So now, Megan is scrambling to throw the most perfect ever birthday party for the boy she’s in love with. Luke’s brother, Brent, comes over to help promising to make this party something he’ll never forget.
When Luke arrives he’s stoked about the party. Megan asks if Isabella can be there and he says it’s fine. When Isabella shows up, Brent is rude to her. No surprise there. However, his girlfriend defends Isabella which is a surprise. During the party we see Megan ping-ponging between Jeff and Luke the entire party. At one point there’s a Beer Pong tournament and Megan chooses Luke continuing to make things incredibly awkward. Jeff is also visibly upset, but Megan doesn’t notice or care.
As the party continues, we see that Brent got a sex worker dressed as a cop for Luke’s birthday. The two sneak off to the airstream and fool around. While that’s happening, the girls are in the living room learning the choreography of Christina Aguilera’s “Genie in a Bottle” which is so MIllenial. Then, they dance for the boys outside. Megan gives no Fs and is hardcore flirting with Luke in front of Jeff almost KISSING! Then, she goes and sits next to Jeff and acts brand new when he calls her out, breaking up with her.
Later that night, Steven and Debbie who are just starting to date come home from the movies seeing American Pie. Everything seems perfect.
CRUEL SUMMER – Winter 1999
It’s time for the Chatham Plunge, which is basically the Polar Bear Plunge, but local. It’s been a tradition for Megan and Luke since they were little. However, this year Megan is bailing to go help the man in the woods with a job. Cut to Luke working out with the Sheriff. The Sheriff shares a personal story about going against his family’s wishes and doing what was best for himself. We love foreshadowing.
Since Megan is no longer going to the plunge, Luke and Isabella go together. While at the beach, some local boys talk shit to Isabella and Luke quickly shuts them down. The two do the plunge and quickly get out. Luke brought a handtowel so he’s freezing. Isabella is kind and allows him to share her giant bath towel. Luke confides in Isabella that he doesn’t feel like Megan likes him anymore. She shares that the reason she broke up with him is because Megan liked him. He didn’t understand why that mattered. He then calls out how many hits she’s taken for Megan. Isabella says that loyalty means everything to her and she’ll never regret it. Luke tells Isabella that he’s missed her and tries to KISS HER! She backs up immediately and he doesn’t understand. He thought the vibe was there and she’s like “You thought wrong.”
Jumping over to Megan, she heads over to Ned’s house (the creepy guy in the woods). There he shows her his special lockdown security system that causes his “fortress” to go full lockdown. He’s worried about Y2K and wants Megan’s help to test it. This entire scenario is super weird, but Megan is willing to do whatever he wants. After the test is finished, Ned shares with her a project that he was working on. However, he was fired and they shelved it. He then continues to manipulate her by sharing his back story about growing up poor so he taught himself how to code and now he feels in control of his life. He then talks smack about the Chambers family and Megan quickly defends Luke saying he’s not like them. However, Ned doesn’t believe it. He doesn’t understand what she doesn’t get because the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
Later, Luke is at Megan’s house ready to do damage control. He brings her a plunge t-shirt and tells her how much he’s missed her the last few days. He wants to talk to her, but Megan’s not in the mood to talk. So, she distracts him with sex instead. Afterward, she apologizes for being weird the last few days. Apparently, she’s still holding a grudge about the mental differences in money. Megan and Luke makeup, but then Luke drops a bomb. Instead of owning up to what he did he fully blames Isabella saying she kissed HIM!
CRUEL SUMMER – Summer 2000
We see Megan working on a new laptop. This is odd because if you remember last week, the police confiscated her computer. Her mother is concerned about who gave it to her, and Megan brushes her off. Then, Megan heads to Luke’s memorial. While sitting and crying alone, Brent joins Megan and they bond over their memories of him.
Later, Megan tells her mother that she got the sealed records about Lisa’s death. According to them, Isabella left St. Barts by helicopter after Lisa’s death. Her parents used their connections to keep everything quiet. Now, Megan is connecting the dots to their similar situations.
Then, Debbie goes to look under Isabella’s bed as she instructed in the previous episode. There she finds something and has a look of shock, but we still don’t know what it is.
Later, we see Steve barging into the Sheriff’s office screaming about how no one has been arrested for Luke’s death. He believes it was Isabella who killed Luke. The Sheriff tries to calm him down, but Steve isn’t haven’t it. He’s going to higher a private investigator. Then, Steven goes to Megan and Debbie’s house demanding to speak with Megan. He wants answers for all the crazy rumors and he believes the girls are hiding something. Debbie refuses to let him in.
Then, we see Megan in the backyard looking at Isabella’s mugshot. We also learn that Megan has been trying to get ahold of Trevor to talk about his letter. Megan confronts Isabella about St. Barts and Lisa. Megan begins screaming at her about lying to her since day one about their friendship and everything else. Isabella says that Lisa was drunk and jumped in the water on her own. Isabella went after her but she was gone. She says it was the, “worst night of my life.” Megan then accuses Isabella of going back to the cabin to murder Luke. They also talk about the sex tape again, and Brent’s girlfriend overhears them learning that it’s really Megan on the tape.
It turns out Brent’s girlfriend/ex-girlfriend is the daughter of the Sheriff. She tells him what she overheard. Then we see Debbie confront Megan about the bloody sheets she found saying she needs to know what happened. Megan’s reply, ” What if you don’t like what you hear?”
Cruel Summer – 206 – “The Plunge” [RECAP/REVIEW]
Cruel Summer, “The Plunge” does a great job of playing with the juxtaposition of the timelines. We see the happiness and drama of the summer and how it leads into winter. We now have confirmation that Luke is not the “good guy” he claims to be by throwing Isabella under the bus for his actions Winter of 1999. I’m hoping we see more of Megan and Ned’s relationship and how it came to be. The storyline is the perfect example of grooming and manipulation. Everyone watching should see this storyline as a warning.
As far as what I call the current timeline – Summer 2000 – is still constantly surprising me and keeping me coming back for more. The bloody sheets, the reveal tof he Sheriff’s daughter. I’m so ready for what happens next.