The Weirdest, Dumbest Reference to Buffy I Have Ever Read: Beautiful Oblivion Chapter 21

"Jennifer lawrence yikes"

Last week, things supposedly fell apart, except they really didn’t at all…

This week, fingers crossed, Trent will fall off a cliff or be abducted by aliens.

Beautiful Oblivion Chapter 21

SATURDAY NIGHT AFTER A GRUELING NIGHT AT THE RED, I dragged my ass into the apartment, and flipped on my bedroom light. Trenton was lying on top of my covers in a pair of navy-blue boxer briefs . . . and socks.

The way the reveal that Trenton is wearing… socks is presented, kind of gives the impression that Cami is going to make a joke about said socks either to just us readers or to Trenton. Alas, I’m left wondering if I’m supposed to LOL at Trenton’s ridiculous fashion sense (remember that time he came outside in boxers and… fuzzy slippers! He’s such a hoot!) or if I’m supposed to feel sorry for Trenton and his cold feet.

I’d never come home to anyone before, but it wasn’t a wretched feeling. Just the opposite: I was in a warm bed with the warm, incredibly-hard-to-resist body of the man who loved me more than anyone ever had. It could be worse. Way worse.

When Cami started off with, “I’d never come home to anyone before” did you immediately suspect this was a “wretched feeling” because I didn’t. [Matthew says: Maybe we’re taking that for granted because we’ve never dated people who broke into our apartments and snuck into our beds.] Doesn’t this all feel like Cami’s been completely brainwashed and is trying to communicate her misery to all of us. “GUYS, I AM TOTALLY WITH SOMEONE WHO LOVES ME…COULD BE WORSE RIGHT????” and “GUYS, I’M COMING HOME TO TRENTON, BUT SERIOUSLY, IT’S NOT A WRETCHED FEELING!!! I SWEAR!!!”

I continue to worry about Cami when this happens,

“I see you found the key.”

“No, I couldn’t find it, so I crawled in through your bedroom window. Did you know it’s been unlocked?”

I froze.

Trenton laughed, slow and breathy. I elbowed him.”

"Jennifer lawrence yikes gif"

I… I don’t get it. Was her window actually unlocked and Trent is messing with her? Or is it funny that her window has been unlocked and even more terrifying men can just come into her room anytime they like. [Matthew says: See, I’d have assumed that this would hint that the key has been stolen and create tension that something terrible will happen later, like one of the many people who wants to beat Trenton shitless breaking in or something, but I know you’ve already read the whole book, so I’m guessing this is just another pointless thing in this book that never goes anywhere.]

Before we have a chance to find out, Brazil and Raegan come home, fighting loudly over their relationship which a grand total of no one is invested in. Then they have sex. I sincerely hope this is not Jamie McGuire’s way of hinting to us that Raegan’s going to get her own spinoff one day where we’ll get to experience the sex firsthand with Raegan instead of through the walls with Cami.

Then for some reason, Trenton and Cami argue about moving in together, which leads to the moment I’m referring to in the title of this post. A moment so upsetting to me that I had to stop writing this post for a good ten minutes to seethe.

Trenton touched my knee, and then let his hand slide upward until his fingers were touching the cotton piece of my panties. “I know you fairly intimately.”

“Really? You want to get it on with Buffy and Spike next door?”


“They’re fighting, and then they . . . never mind.”

And that was our new segment, Bad References, Great Shows. Dear Jamie McGuire, you motherfucking piece of shit, please never try to compare Raegan and Brazil’s storyline to anything from Buffy. Please never mention Buffy again in anything you write. How. Dare. You. Cami can’t even explain why this reference is applicable, because it isn’t. At all. She could have chosen plenty other references that actually were comparable.

[Matthew says: I’ve still yet to see Buffy, but even based on this scene I feel like there is some important nuance being lost when you suggest, “oh, these two people who fight and then have sex and just like these other two people who fight and then have sex”.]

Later, when Raegan comes into Cami’s room [Matthew says: To yell at Trenton for hilariously imitating her sex noises! I feel like this was an important detail for you guys to fully understand Trenton Dreamboat Maddox.], she asks Trent what happened to his face. Only then does Cami notice that Trent’s face is scratched up.

“I thought you went to Chicken Joe’s with Olive tonight? You went to that biker bar, didn’t you?” I said, my voice thick with accusation.

Trenton chuckled. “No, I went to Chicken Joe’s. So did Chase and Colin.”

Raegan gasped, and so did I. My eyes filled with tears. “They fucking jumped you? When you were with Olive? Is she okay?”

What does Cami think happened to Olive? That her brothers beat a small child up in order to teach Trent a lesson? I guess she means emotionally okay, but she didn’t seem concerned about Olive’s emotional well-being when Trent was threatening that kid’s dad in Chicken Joe’s that one time.

Trent assures Cami that everything is fine because he beat up all of her brothers, so now they’re all cool. Stupidly, Cami’s brothers text her and say that it’s all been resolved. [Matthew says: Cool, so I guess we can stop caring about this subplot that was resolved off-screen after maybe one scene of build up. I can totally see how everything is crashing down.]

The next morning, Cami wakes up to find Olive standing over her bed watching her, thus turning into the creepy horror novel we’ve all known it had the potential to be.

Olive’s speech impediment continues to confound me:

“Hey, Olive,” I said, squinting. “Where’s Trent?”

“He’s bringing in the gwocewies.”

“Groceries?” I said, sitting up. “What groceries?”

“We went shopping this mowning. He said you wuhr out of a few things, but he has six sacks.”

…sacks? Is that part of her speech prawblems or did he bring sacks to the grocery store? I have never heard a small child use this word. Speaking of sacks:

Brazil stepped into the hallway, his dark bronze skin covered only by a pair of green plaid boxers. He yawned, scratched his ass, and then turned around to see Olive. He crossed his hands over his groin that was just waking up as well.

Why is he getting an erection in the middle of the hallway? This seems inconsiderate even if a small child wasn’t there. Guests should always make sure their morning wood is in a private space. It’s in every good etiquette book.

Trenton comes back with the groceries, and Cami asks if he has any cigarettes on him, which leads to Olive saying even more bizarre and baffling things:

“Olive crossed her arms. “Smoking is bad fowr you.”

Okway. Fair so fawr.

I pulled the cigarette from my mouth and set it on the counter. “You’re right. I’m sorry.”

“Don’t patwonize me. You should quit. Twent should quit, too.”

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Has Jamie McGuire ever watched Buffy or spoken to a small child? Everything she has tried to pull off in this chapter is incorrect and terrible. How did it all go so howribwy wrowng? [Matthew says: I don’t have a problem with “sacks”, but fucking “patronize”? This is bullshit. McGuire’s just running out of words with an “r” in them.]

Olive begins to cry tears of joy as Cami and Trenton agree to stop smoking and throw out the rest of their cigarettes. I didn’t even know they smoked before this scene where they immediately quit with no complications ever being mentioned. Realistically. Next thing you know, we’ll find out Brazil just beat the cancer he’s been struggling with offscreen for the whole book.

I’m sorry, before we move on from this terrible scene, Olive has a few more words a child would never say:

“I’m just so bwessed!”

McGuire clearly got confused between moms trying to use instagram and a small child. A simple mistake. #bwessed. [Matthew says: I’m fucking done.]

Insert stupid scene at work where Hazel tries to convince Cami to let her guage her ears, and we all try to remember who Hazel is. Trent comes to work and tells Cami he has to show her something. That something turns out to be a two bedroom apartment because Trent is trying to get his own place. This would all be well and good if he didn’t seem to have forgotten the fact that Cami has been pretty clear about not wanting to live with him.

“Trenton laughed and wrapped his arms around me. “I was saving up for a year’s worth of rent and bills, including my half of dad’s. I can afford to move us in now.”

“Wait, wait, wait . . . did you just say us?”

“What’d I say?” Trent asked, confused. “You just said you loved it and it was better than your place.”

I know he’s just a copy/paste/search/replace of Travis, but how can he be so stupid as to think Cami will be like, “By stating very clearly multiple times that I didn’t want to live with you, what I actually meant was please go find an apartment and try to convince me to live there with you. That is actually what my crazy woman-brain wants.” [Matthew says: Well, this is exactly how they started dating. So there was sort of a precedent!]

How is that fucktard confused about Cami’s reaction?

“Trenton stood there with his mouth open. It snapped shut, and he rubbed the back of his neck.

“Okay, so . . . I have a key to your place, you have a key to mine. See how it goes. No pressure.”

“I don’t have to have a key to your apartment right now.”

“Why not?”

“I just . . . I don’t need one. I don’t know, it feels weird. And why do you need a two-bedroom?”

I’m glad she asked, because I was wondering the same thing. I was genuinely terrified he was going to be like, “For the baby I want to impregnate you with next week.” [Matthew says: “In the meantime, it’ll be Olive’s gwuest woom!”]

Trenton shrugged. “You said you needed your space. That room is for whatever you want it to be.”

I wanted to hug him and tell him yes and make him happy, but I didn’t want to move in with my boyfriend. Not yet, and if I did, it would be a natural progression, not this ambushing bullshit. “No.”

“No to what?”

“To everything. I’m not taking a key. I’m not moving in. I’m not getting gauges. Just . . . no!”

I was really pleased with Cami until she added in the gauges bit, because it just undermines her reaction and makes her seem cooky instead of completely reasonable. Which she is being by not wanting to move in with Trenton or exchange keys after five minutes of dating. [Matthew says: Word! This is a perfectly reasonable thing to want/not want! Why did it have to get turned into comic relief? You know, aside from that Jamie McGuire can’t write. I’m looking for other, non-cop out reasons.]

Back in the car, they’re like, “Lol we picked a bad week to quit smoking.” So I guess McGuire wanted to end this chapter with this line, so she quickly added in the part where they’ve both been smokers this whole time. [Matthew says: Someone isn’t feeling very bwessed.]

So, I know Cami said everything fell apart, but aside from this argument it really doesn’t seem like it’s falling apart? And I don’t think this argument is amounting to things falling apart either. The fuck was Cami talking about two chapters ago? [Matthew says: And why couldn’t that declaration have waited until now?]

But my actual question to you guys is, what issue would you like to be introduced and resolved in the span of a few sentences? Brazil’s cancer? Raegan’s desire to become a doctor?

[Matthew adds: Careful, though. Introducing cancer is a slippery slope!]




  1. Madeline Reply

    Wow, when McGuire brings Buffy into this, shit gets real. This book has furthered its The Room-like quality by bringing up the smoking and immediately resolving it, along with the family tension subplot. Trent sounds like some psycho, beating up Cami’s brothers (albeit they probs deserved it and I feel nothing but contempt for them) and wanting to move in with her so soon. How long have they been dating, a week?

    I want the next subplot to be Calvin revealing his lifelong dream to be an exotic dancer/party clown and shutting down the tattoo parlor to chase this dream. Then he pirouettes away.

    • 22aer22 Reply

      I couldn’t believe her audacity. How could she invoke the names of Buffy and Spike so stupidly?

      It really sucks that we’re supposed to read psycho as romantic in this situation becuz those Maddox bros love forever, so the women are actually cray for not getting engaged/getting tattoos of the word MADDOX/moving in/exchanging keys right away.

      A thousand yesses to the Calvin plot.

  2. Dana Reply

    Buffy is probably one of my favorite TV shows ever, so I was already pretty horrified by the title of this post. Then I got to the reference and actually—not exaggerating one bit—began biting my knuckle in shock while my other arm flailed around incredulously, as if gesturing to someone who wasn’t in the room to alert them of this travesty. Seriously, McGuire? Do not bring Buffy into this and especially not Spike! The joke sounded more fit for two wacky sitcom or CW characters who are constantly fighting and then hooking up for the yucks of it. Not the truly dark, fucked up mess that was the Buffy/Spike relationship in season 6.

    How many of her readers will even truly understand that reference? You know, besides maybe, sorta, kinda of knowing who Buffy is by the sheer fact that nobody else has the fucking name.

    I’m sorry. I’m very passionate about things…

    • 22aer22 Reply

      THANK YOU!!!! The Buffy/Spike storyline was so much more complicated and interesting and dark than anything that could ever possibly be in these books. Granted, I think it had it’s flaws (hello, Seeing Red), but remains so much better than Raegan/Brazil that there isn’t even a number to properly quantify just how much better it is.

      Yeah, what IS McGuire’s target age group here…? I don’t think most of her readers would have seen Buffy.

      • Dana Reply

        I might be younger than her target age group (I’m a college freshman), but I do know people my age that have read these books. I don’t know anybody my age, you know, besides ME, that has ever seen Buffy besides one of my friends who used to casually watch an episode every now and then when she was younger and barely remembers any of it now (I don’t think she even remembers most of the characters’ names). My sister is a few years older, and it’s the same thing with her.

        Honestly, the only reason I have even seen Buffy is because my dad randomly bought my mom Season Four (of all seasons) on DVD several years ago, way before Netflix was around. Having no idea what the hell it was, me and my sister decided to watch ‘Hush’ and were intrigued, to say the least. We slowly accumulated every other season besides the first one, and I totally watched them out of order. 4-3-5-6-7-2-1 or something like that. Thinking about it now, I don’t know how I ever knew what was going on half the time.

  3. Bellomy Reply

    Olive is Tiny Tim.

    Olive is Tiny Tim.

    Olive is TINY TIM.

    It all makes sense now.

    Also, Ariel, season 6 of “Justified” in one day. I HAVE NEVER BEEN MORE EXCITED FOR A THING.

    • 22aer22 Reply

      Omgg I hope by the time we’re caught up, all of S6 has aired so I never have to wait a week between episodes! We watched through s2 episode 9 last night and I need more immediately. Actually counting down the hours till I get home from work just to watch! So obsessed.

      • Bellomy Reply

        Episode 9 is one of the best episodes of any show I’ve ever seen. The finale of season 2 is even better. I can’t get over the perfection of the final scene of S2.

        • 22aer22 Reply

          OMG BELLOMY. So I got to talking to a friend of mine today about this really god awful show The Miller. Then it hit me. THAT’S WHERE I HAVE SEE MAGS RECENTLY. Oh my dear lord. How can such a good actress be wasted on the steaming pile of dung that is The Millers?

          • Bellomy Reply

            I noticed that, and felt sad.

            SEASON 6 PREMIERE TODAY. I have literally been planning my year around this.

            • 22aer22 Reply

              Omg noooo, now I’m going to wonder until season 6 who it is >< damn youuu!!!

              Super sad character death just happened in S2 tho :((((((

    • Madeline Reply

      OMG I totally thought the “truly bwessed” line sounded like some Tiny Tim knockoff but I thought I was just crazy. FUCK YOU MCGUIRE A CHRISTMAS CAROL IS A CLASSIC.

      • 22aer22 Reply

        Hahaha I was so distracted by our Justified obsession that I forgot to agree about the Tiny Tim thing!!

        Why is McGuire actively trying to ruin EVERYTHING for us?

  4. A Reply

    If ANTHING, it’s really more of a Xander/Cordelia situation.

    Where does this book take place? Because “sack” is a regional replacement for “bag” in certain areas, like Ohio.

    • 22aer22 Reply

      Oh my god completely forgot about Xander/Cordelia. I still don’t want McGuire anywhere near Buffy, though, no matter who she is referencing from it.

      Yeah, I mean I’m aware some people use the word sack, but I worked with kids for years and never once heard them use the words “sack” or “patronising” although you’re right, maybe in some places it’s more commonly used? But like I think potato sack…not grocery bag. I could be insane here, though.

  5. knittyhelen Reply

    So with the nearly naked man in socks part I was expecting this video about the sock gap:

    But apparently you guys aren’t up on British comedies from the turn of the millennium. Shocking.

    • 22aer22 Reply

      HOLY SHIT HOLY SHIT As soon as I saw “sock gap” I was like, “OMG THE CLIP FROM COUPLING.”

      When I wrote this post, I was thinking about how Coupling did this, but 1) didn’t think anyone would get the reference. 2) It didn’t excuse how stupid the mention of socks was here.

      Jeff 4 eva <333 Omg seriously freaking out that someone else actually knows Coupling!!!! My boyfriend doesn't even know what it is, and he's British. The fuck is the point of having a British boo if he doesn't know this show???

      • knittyhelen Reply

        I’m sorry to say there may be something wrong with him. Coupling is just so, so funny! And Cami is a very special lady if she is willing to sleep with him after seeing him with a sock gap.

        • 22aer22 Reply

          I showed him the episode with the Israeli woman who like Jeff, SHADAIM or however it’s spelled, and he thought it was okay. I can’t remember if I showed him other ones, but I need him to understand how amazing it is.

  6. Kate Reply

    The only suitable Buffy comparison for this series: the Maddox Brothers are definitely pulling a Jonathan-in-“Superstar.” Everyone is attracted to them even though there is literally nothing attractive about them because they’re creepy misogynists. Presumably, this series is also a result of black magic.
    Also, what the fuck, Matthew, you haven’t seen Buffy? Come on. Get your shit together.

      • 22aer22 Reply

        Quick, everyone, let’s shame Matthew into watching it this weekend!

        Absolutely loving the Jonathan/Superstar reference. Completely accurate. Also, Jonathan popped up in another episode of Girls this season, and it made me want to watch that episode again (Superstar, not the Girls episode. Once was enough for that.)

  7. Pingback: An Entire Chapter of Raegan's Subplot: Beautiful Oblivion Chapter 22 - Bad Books, Good Times

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