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Every Step You Take I’ll Be Watching You: Twisted “Docu-Trauma” Review

By on July 31, 2013

Kylie Bunbury as Lacey Porter -- © 2013 ABC Family

This week there was quite a bit of a developmental focus shift, and it might have left you feeling a little empty. In reality though, “Docu-Trauma” just took the show’s lead foot off the gas in terms of the larger running plots to spend more time on character introductions and expound on the series’ real world elements.

Something that’s been floating right beneath the surface of the show since it began is the threat Danny’s presence presents for Jo, Lacey, Karen, and anyone else who associates with him in either private or public. We’ve seen him fight with Archie and get pushed by a grown man at Fall Fest, but the one constant in these situations is public eye. Having that, however, is not always a sure thing for someone like Danny and we’re given multiple scenes to explore this threat.

The first instance is at the Desai’s when they discover that the front of their home has been plastered with red jump ropes. This might seem like a harmless prank, much like tee-peeing, but it’s not. Tara having died in the home has kept the Desai’s somewhat safe in terms of tresspassing, but if someone feels comfortable enough to walk through your yard, they might they feel comfortable enough to enter your house uninvited. The second incident involves a late night date in the park between Romeo and Juliet. While enjoying their sparkling apple cider, a group of masked individuals approaches out of the bushes wearing wigs and masks that resemble Danny. It isn’t until after Danny throws the glass bottle that the group disperses, and not in a particularly hasty fashion.

When Sarita shows Lacey a picture of Danny’s house covered in jump ropes, Lacey expresses concern over the prank. Sarita reads it as sympathy, but finding Tara’s body was clearly traumatic for Lacey and this only stirs the pot. Being affronted in the park in the middle of the night doesn’t help either. Lacey losing her popular friends isn’t the only reason to keep quiet about their tryst. Her social position also leaves Danny open to more threats. As the reigning queen of the school, she’s always being watched, as evidenced. Lacey’s reaction was telling and probably provided the most realistic response to the situation. Instead of getting closer to Danny, she pauses their hot and heavy petting.

Unsettling incidents aside, one of the better parts of the episode was how much attention was paid to the love trapezoid that’s been building for several weeks. We watch as Rico literally tells Jo everything except “I like you,” while Jo ends up in the sister lane with Danny. Neither take it well, with Jo and Rico’s insecurities becoming more apparent in conversations with the other half of the gang. The beauty of both heartbreaks, however, is that it provided bonding moments for characters currently on the outs.

Ashton Moio as Rico, Maddie Hasson and Jo Masterson -- © ABC Family

Ashton Moio as Rico, Maddie Hasson as Jo Masterson — © ABC Family

Jo and Lacey got to spend some symbolic alone time on the swingset outside the Desai’s home after the party, and their conversation left us wanting their friendship repaired more than we thought. Danny and Rico’s moments throughout the episode again provide us with comic relief, but also allow us to see the complexity of trust and how our perception of a person versus knowing them can drastically change how we react to them. There definitely appears to be drama brewing, so it’s nice to see the core group both care and support each other while we can. Danny’s return hasn’t been easy for any of them, but in a town full of secrets the only people they really have to talk about it with are each other.

Amidst all this fear and friendship, we were given a proper introduction to Tyler, Phoebe’s brother. He is clearly interested in Jo, but gives off as many creepy vibes as the masked Dannys did. Last week we watched as he used his charm to disarm and manipulate his way into numerous conversations. His ease with people seemingly caught Danny’s attention, and even earned him a date with Jo this week. But after Phoebe spilled the beans about his plans to make Danny’s party a night he wouldn’t forget, all we want to do is forget about him.

Jo’s storyline expanding outside of Danny is positive, but she is already in an emotionally vulnerable place. And after we catch a masked Danny filming Lacey and the real Danny indulging in some private time, we can only suspect that something will surface and threaten the new dynamic. If the little Green Grove police department was able to find a tiny necklace in a pond, it doesn’t seem unlikely that the lovebirds video might go public for all (including Jo’s) eyes to see. After all, nothing stays secret for long.

Here are my twists, turns, and queries for this week’s episode of Twisted. Share your thoughts about the episode in the comment section below.

Twists: 1. Whoever left the jump ropes outside of the Desai’s house and gave them to the group knew the jump ropes were red. This is particularly important as Lacey couldn’t even remember the correct jump rope color. 2. Tyler mentioned pranks as in plural, signifying he knows about more than one instant where Danny was harassed

Turns: 1. Karen Desai admits to killing Regina

  1. Based on what we’ve seen of Tyler, should we trust him? 
  2. Do you agree with Karen’s decision to cover for Danny, even though she appears to believe he did it?
  3. Who do you think was behind the Danny masks and stunt at his party?
  4. Which pairing interaction was the most enjoyable: Danny and Rico or Jo and Lacey?
  5. Do you think it’s about time Lacey and Danny tell Jo about their relationship?

Twisted airs Tuesdays at 9:00 – 10:00 p.m. ET/PT on ABC Family.


  1. Ivy

    July 31, 2013 at 7:13 pm

    One of my absolutely favorite moments of this episode was Lacey and Jo bonding on the swings. We also get more insight into Lacey’s mind – she regrets being headstrong and venturing into the house to see the dead body; so now she has over-corrected and is cautious to the max.

    I do wonder about the color of the jumprope. Why would Lacey have remembered the color incorrectly? It seems like a vital part of the memory of that afternoon, so is there some significance to that? Other than Jo has a supposedly better memory?

    I think its actually possible that Tyler is not completely horrible. He actually had a point about those pranks possibly creating sympathy for Danny. But it was incredibly cruel to execute them (it stands to reason that it’s the film club posse behind it – they’re trying to give their documentary some drama), so I’m definitely not a fan of his. Also, how is it possible that news of Dacey is not all over the school given a dozen masked Dannys spotting the two of them on their date?

    Rico is simply amazing – all of his moments were so genuine and amusing – Ashton Moio is an incredible actor. I adore Jo and Rico together. Their dynamic is incredibly sweet, cute and fun. I was less fond of Danny and Lacey together in this episode. Lacey has been traumatized of course, but she was really harsh with Danny who is at his most vulnerable with all the hate and possible violence brewing. Lacey has a lot of power in this relationship which is probably really scary for Danny as it feels like she can leave him at any time.

    I can see why Danny may want to tell Jo of his relationship with Lacey. Jo has been a huge source of support for him and is the only (best) friend he can really talk to. You could see that it would have been helpful for him to discuss the Secret Date prank with Jo, but he couldn’t because it involved Lacey. But Lacey has no obligation at all to say anything to Jo. She is a private person to begin with, just exploring where this thing with Danny might go, and none of her own friends know. She and Jo are no longer close and mostly only talk in relation to Danny stuff.

    Well written review – thanks for the food for thought!

    • Abbey White

      August 1, 2013 at 2:58 am

      I did love that moment between Jo and Lacey. You could see it, what they once saw in each other and what they once had. There aren’t a lot of things I long for on this show (because it delivers pretty solidly), but I am eager to see the trio reunite.

      The jump rope thing threw me. How is it possible for a group of masked strangers to know the correct color, but not for Lacey to? What significance lies in that?

      I read someone state Tyler reminded them of Sebastian Valmont from Cruel Intentions and I totally understood where they were coming from. My issue with Tyler is whether he’s genuinely nice. After the episode was over, I thought of something my grandfather used to tease me with: A more dangerous thing than danger itself is danger disguised as something else. He was already calling Danny Socio, but when he made the pranks plural slip I felt the need to take a step back from his charm. I think the writers have created this amazing new character though. Tyler will do wonders for Jo’s development arc (if he sticks around).

      Ashton is an incredible actor. I’ve been constantly surprised by and pleased with his performance. Rico definitely has my heart.

      Danny and Lacey this episode were shaky, but for me in the best way possible. We were privy to more of Lacey’s perspective in their interactions which made understanding her decisions easier. Then they added in a serious threat, validating those reservations she has. Her desire for distance tested both her and Danny, who is more vulnerable with her than anyone else. Danny’s speech in the car finally allowed us to see him express his honest feelings, which was wonderful because he’s always so guarded (either through charisma, snark, avoidance, etc.). There were moments in this episode where I felt like Avan and Kylie’s chemistry was off – or not as strong as it had been – but I was happy to see the first fight. It highlighted why and how this relationship may work out.

      I agree 100% with your assessment of the Lacey/Danny/Jo dynamic and why Danny and Lacey are at odds about telling Jo.

  2. Ivy

    August 5, 2013 at 1:11 am

    I agree — Tyler is a great addition to the show. Archie was not a worthy adversary for Danny (they wrote him as a pretty one dimensional character) but Tyler just might be.

    I felt that way as well re. Danny/Lacey chemistry this episode. Until now its been magnetic and effervescent without fail. However, the secret date scene, for example, felt a little uncomfortable/awkward. I feel almost as if the actors had been rushed through it (maybe they were shooting late at night and everyone was exhausted) and they were off their game. I also found Lacey’s little strip tease at the end uncharacteristic of Lacey (a little too salacious given her personality, and age experience level).

    In thinking more about it, I am curious as to Danny’s insistence on telling Jo EVERYTHING. He practically yelled at Lacey about not keeping the Regina blackmail letter from Jo. He brings up his distaste for not telling Jo about dating Lacey in every other kissing scene he has with Lacey. It hasn’t really been that long in terms of the Twisted world (a week?) so this obsession is a little bit odd.

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