The beginning of this episode was a hard reality check into how the times have changed. From the coy flirting across balconies that our parents have witnessed to our generation rejoicing over an Orkut message -- and to Devi's that featured her filming an eccentric TikTok dance video to get Paxton's attention. Of course, the one thing that will remain common across generations is that thirst-traps always go unnoticed!
But just when Fabiola and Eleanor begin to suspect Devi's stories about Paxton, he takes everyone by surprise. He chooses her as his class assignment partner. Of course, one of the most obvious stereotypes for a brown kid is that they're the smartest of the lot (they clearly haven't seen my report card!), and it is later revealed that Paxton only chose Devi to help him pass. Initially hurt, Devi is (as always) quick to recover from the blow, and is rejoiced when she is rewarded with a rather boyish nickname by her beau. In fact, we also couldn't help but notice trouble brewing right when she self-invited herself to a house party.
Also read: Never Have I Ever: Episode 2 recap
A quick trip into a flashback at the beginning of the episode briefs us how Devi tries to avoid chores that still remind her of her deceased father. Being reminded of her Mohan's interest in gardening led her to steer clear off the rotting tomato patch in her backyard, despite Nalini's orders to get it cleaned. However, on one fateful night (right after introducing Kamala the popular Netflix show -- Riverdale), Devi notices an unusual visitor near her father's tomato patch -- a coyote. On closer examination, Devi finds the coyote picking up her father's tennis ball, and she declares to herself that the animal is indeed her father's reincarnation.
She manages to slip this into a casual conversation with her therapist (right after she asks Dr Jamie to buy a thong for her!). She is calmly advised to talk to the coyote once if she faces it again.
We've all had our stories of drunken mistakes, but Devi's would probably top the list! Because after encountering the coyote at her classmate Trent's house party, Devi attempts to talk to the animal. She hilariously ends up in the ER -- in thigh-high boots, of course -- after it viciously attacks her shoulder.
Staying true to the clichés, Paxton sweeps her to the hospital, just like any knight-in-shining-armour, and the two share a light moment before a fuming Nalini arrives to see her.
Devi returns to school the next day, only to be recognised as 'Coyote Girl' and the next big sensation of her school -- but we can definitely see her melt into a puddle when Paxton throws his arm over her!
While Devi took the spotlight for this episode, there were moments where Fabiola is shown struggling to come to terms with her sexuality. Her run-in with her pretty classmate Eve did not go as she'd have imagined, but the episode ends with her admitting her orientation to herself with a smile.
Kamala too runs back to her Asian boyfriend Steve after binge-watching eighteen hours of Riverdale, and the duo decides to keep their relationship a secret. Needless to say, we're rooting for the two!
Despite having the worst year of her life, you might not notice the affliction that Devi tries to push away until the third episode. Her ability to smile after being attacked by a coyote -- and additionally being friend-zoned by her crush -- is endearing. What Never Have I Ever probably does best is that it wraps the graver issues in a blanket of humour. You will almost forget the Indian aspect of this show and will be more involved with the development of the characters that it manages to ease you into. What otherwise started as a teenage sitcom, slowly progressed into a family drama and we still can't get enough of it!