Love After Lockup

A woman learns a lot from her mother. Definitely true in my case. My mom has enriched my life by exposing me to the beliefs, values, and norms of others so I may become a citizen of the world.

You might remember maternal wisdom nuggets like this and this. I owe it all to my mother’s guiding light (which happens to be invisible like that of the infrared beam cast from a remote control onto a television.)

The holidays bring us together and provide the perfect foundation (her bed) for us to reconnect (watch tv) and expose me to new and enriching opportunities (reality tv.)

And because this citizen of the world is a selfless governess of cultural evangelism, I am here to educate you on one of the most amazing reality phenomena you are surely not witnessing.

Ladies and gentlemen, have you heard the good news about Love After Lockup? Here, take a pamphlet.

Love After Lockup introduces several couples in various stages of their journey from confinement to consummation. In some cases they knew each other prior to the big lockup, but most cases a sexy mugshot was all it took to put pen to paper (and usually credit card to commissary) and find love after lock up.

First up was Brittany and Marcelino. It was Brittany’s release day after 2 years in the slammer for some dumb, old robbery charges. P’shaw. That was nothing compared to the 5 years she spent in la slammarita for drugs and shit. Marcelino was an earnest gentleman who’s main goal was to, “erase her past tumountants” and give the woman he’s only ever seen through plexiglass a better life. It’s a sweet goal and one maybe better served on a shelter dog, but whatever. Parolees before puppies, bitches. Marcelino and Brittany are ready to take their relationship to the “in-person” stage and we are here for it.

Marcelino waited outside the jail for 7 seconds, muttering about her whereabouts. WHERE IS SHE, MAN??? She should have been here by now. Clearly THE MAN is trying to f*ck over his girl. He’s been waiting a year for this moment. To enhance the drama, the producers encouraged Marcelino to turn his back on the prison so he totally misses Brittany’s exit and her first breath of sweet, sweet freedom.

“BABY!” She yelled, because she was unsure which of her correspondents had come to pick her up.

She threw her arms and a tall kitchen garbage bag full of commissary purchases around his neck. They awkwardly embraced like two people who have not ever spoken without the use of a telephone. Upon disentanglement, she handed him several pieces of paper that included the rules and regulations for her release.

Don’t do drugs.

Don’t kill anyone.

Don’t steal shit that’s not yours.

Do check in with your patrol officer.

“Don’t have any FUN!” Marcelino yelled, clearly unaware of why people go to prison in the first place. To him Brittany is Rudolph and the American Prison System was all of the other reindeer.

As they drove away, he stuck his middle finger out the driver’s side window and encouraged her to do the same.

“Uhh, ha, okay,” she said, pointing a timid middle digit toward the dashboard.

“NO!” Marcelino yelled. “OUT THE WINDOW! To them! To the people who won’t let you have any fun!”

Brittany agreed, reluctantly, because “do not flip off the jail as you drive away” was #14 on her rules and regulations.

Brittany asked Marcelino to take her to the desert because she need a “moment of alone time.” Rightfully so, she wanted to take in the silence and clear her head. He pulled over on the side of a busy road where she proceed to walk 8 feet from the car. Ahhhhh, namaste! Serenity now!

Where can a girl get a little peace, quiet, and huff some exhaust?

Marcelino takes “a moment” literally because within seconds he’s on her, talking loudly about how great silence is and how much she must have missed this. I feel ya, Brittany. Good luck.

Next we met Lizzie and Scott.

Definitely here for the right reasons.
Sorry, ladies, this one is taken. For now.

Approximately 1 hour after Scott picked Lizzie up from prison, she was filling a plastic garbage can at a gas station mini mart because, “she hasn’t been to a store in so long” and Scott promised her “anything she wanted.” What she wanted was junk food, Yoohoo’s, and scratch off lottery tickets. Fill it up, my pretty prison princess! Since they began their correspondence THREE YEARS AGO, Scott had given Lizzie $92,000. Yes. That much. He is now broke and afraid to tell her. Terrible timing!

Lizzie’s fantastic first freedom day continued at the local Comfort Inn. There Lizzie, her embarrassed, awkward daughter, Scott’s embarrassed awkward son, and Scott checked into to two rooms (on Scott of course!) so they can chill out, relax, and reconnect. Boys in one room, girls in the other, because Lizzie didn’t believe in premarital sex. I mean, she did. Definitely before prison and even sometimes in prison, but not now that she’s out of prison. She was born again! Saved! Found Jesus in a pile of chicken gravy. Not sure Scott got the memo, but I’m sure he’s totally cool with it.

First thing Lizzie did in her comped mini-suite was spontaneously stage a mother-daughter jumpfest on the king sized bed. Her daughter was like, “Eh…there’s cameras here and so is that sad, squirrely dude you swindled out of $92,000, and being a teenager is hard enough without my friends seeing me jump on a Comfort Inn mattress with my ex-con mom.” But clearly Lizzie puts the CON in convincing because in seconds they’re squealing and holding hands and realizing jumping on mattresses isn’t really that much fun. Pooped, the girls fall into the bed, which Scott takes as a sign that he should join them.

“Ahhh, what the actual f*ck?! You ain’t Jesus!”

Lizzie didn’t really have much in the wardrobe department, so she tasked her daughter with going to the Forever 21 outlet and buying a bunch of clothes 3 sizes too small. Her first ensemble was a painful bikini that pumped her internal organs through various folds and tucks of flesh like royal icing through a pastry bag.

And this is why you should never sleep on hotel bedspreads.

Lizzie trotted down the hallway in her swimsuit and platform flip-flops to wash the stench of incarceration off her body and be baptized in the glory of chlorine and Giardia.

Meanwhile, we saw a sad Scotty pace around the parking lot, afraid things have changed now that Lizzie was a free woman. So this is what $92,000 and a ride home from prison got you? It was like she was ignoring him or something. Like she only wanted him to buy her gas station food and pay for a hotel room so she could hang out with the daughter whose formative years were spent with a mother behind bars. Lizzie didn’t even know he was broke yet! She had no business treating him like this!

And this is why you shouldn’t swim in hotel pools.

After 9 hours in the pool, Lizzie noticed Scott wasn’t there. She found him sulking in the parking lot and berated him for being alone.

“Are you mad at me,” he asked her.

“No.”

“Your body language says you are.”

“Well, you’re a goddamn fragile egg! Why are you trying to mess up my prison release day? You know this shit only happens once a year!”

“Welp,” a forlorn looking Scott said, “It’s not going to work out.”

Y’all are gonna need a shot of penicillin before I tell you about Matt and Caitlyn. We met our heroine on Matt’s release day. This should have been a happy occasion, but instead she’s in an empty parking lot, sobbing in her car because for SOME INEXPLICABLE REASON Matt wasn’t at the designated meeting spot. I’m still not sure why and honestly it doesn’t matter because some seriously crazy, gross shit went down (that’s a hint) when these 2 ass clowns finally do meet.

A cop told Caitlyn to follow his windowless, white van to an even emptier parking lot where Matt will allegedly be deposited. Because she’s never seen a Lifetime movie she unquestionably agreed and peeled away, still shaking and sobbing.

Someday my prisoner prince will come.

Caitlyn and Matt are the real deal. She saw his photo online and decided he was hot and that was that. They started a correspondence and he proposed over the phone. She felt confident in their relationship, but sometimes worried about how comfortable Matt felt in prison. It’s his happy place, okay?

But wait. What’s that? A van? With someone in the back? OMG, can it be????

SHIT! I forgot my plastic garbage can. How my gonna shop at the Hess Mart?

Matt jumped out of the van and it was all cupped ass cheeks and open mouth kisses from then on.

Yeah, I made my mom pause the TV so I could take a picture of it. I did it for YOU!

Matt said it had been 3 years since he had sex and as reliable and attached as he was to his hand, he’s kind of tired of it.

“I’m ready for Caitlyn.” Gosh that’s romantic!

As they were walking to her car, Caitlyn came to the realization that she’s never seen Matt’s penis. Also romantic!

“You’re gonna have to show that to me,” she said. “I need to inspect you.”

Used to taking orders and pulling down his pants, Matt obliged. He smiled out the passenger side window and Caitlyn shrieked.

This is why you shouldn't swim in hotel pools.
Inspector ding-a-ling is pleased, no?

They drive away to a nice, cozy clearing on the side of the road where they hump on a pile garbage and roadkill.

Our last couple isn’t actually a couple. No, not because they have common sense, values, or self-esteem. Because they’re actually a trio, silly!

Michael had a baby with Sarah. According to Michael they are no longer together. Megan fell in love with Michael while he was in jail. These long-distance jaillovebirds have been “together” for a year and a half. Megan knows about Michael’s baby mama, but she’s not worried. She knows he will always be honest and try really hard not to cheat on her. Megan was planning on flying out to be there for Michael’s release day. Oh, and loose her virginity because “It’s about time.” Megan was so excited!

Meanwhile…

Megan wasn’t the only one excited! Or more specifically excited to pick Michael up from prison. Sarah didn’t know about Megan. Oh, and she’s married to Michael. Oopsie! Michael is not detail oriented.

While Megan was printing her boarding pass, Michael called to say she shouldn’t come.

“Nah, it’s cool. I got a ride. Plus I gotta deal with some baby mama shit and see my kid and stuff.”

Megan was all “WTF! I bought a new pair of leggings for the plane! Why you telling me this shit now???”

Michael promised he had something “real special” planned for them instead. Megan wished Michael told her this before her shelled out three paychecks on a nonrefundable plane ticket. Now she’s questioning their whole relationship. Was he being shady? And she’s still a virgin. She found a restroom and cried in a bathroom stall.

The verdict: Is it possible to find love after lockup? I have no idea because that’s where this episode ended. Is it possible to love Love After Lockup? Yes, I’m afraid it is. It’s been days and I can’t stop thinking about these Godforsaken people. Did Scott ever tell Lizzie he’s broke? Did Brittany ever get any time alone? Did Matt and Caitlyn get eaten by a bear while humping in a rest area garbage can? Is the bear okay???

This show had remarkable similarities to The Bachelor, which is probably why I liked it. Deep down I’m a sucker for hopeful romantics. All they really want is love. And $92,000 worth of nacho cheese and beef sticks. And isn’t that something we can all relate to?

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