Catfish Season 3, Episode 7 “Solana & Elijah” Recap
Hello everyone! I am so excited to be joining the Reality Tea team as a contributor for Catfish: The TV Show! I thought I would begin with a small introduction to the show, for those of you that haven’t watched it before. It airs on MTV on Wednesday nights at 10PM, and it stars Nev Schulman and his partner in crime Max Joseph. The two traverse around the country, assisting people who email them asking for help with online experiences. Some of the people who write in are people who believe that they have found love, while others believe that they are assisting a person who promises careers and other glamorous opportunities in exchange for money or goods. Most, if not all of the time, the people who write in have never even seen the person that they are communicating with, and the people who are “catfishing” them refuse to video chat or speak on the phone. Usually, they use the excuse that they have a terrible internet connection, or that they don’t have access to a webcam (does any laptop come without a webcam anymore?). This show has increased in popularity so much over the past few seasons that it has inspired Webster’s Dictionary to officially add the word “Catfish” to its ever expanding repertoire (I’m not lying! Here’s the link, look for yourselves! It is the second definition at http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/catfish?show=0&t=1403128382).
And so, without further ado, let’s get into tonight’s episode!
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We open with the usual Nev and Max bonding montage, where they snuggle in a random hotel room and flirt with each other. They then move over to the computer, where they read an email from Solana, who details her online relationship with punk rocker Elijah that she met on MySpace… blast from the past. She details that he supported her through her parent’s divorce, but then he suddenly disappeared…only to resurface on Facebook telling her that he has been searching for her. She is suspicious because she hasn’t talked to Elijah on the phone for 6 years, and is worried that he may not be the same person. She also tells them that she has recently met another (in flesh) person that she was beginning to date, but is unable to forget about her MySpace love.
Solana, our protagonist
Nev and Max video chat Solana, and they talk about the relationship. She tells them that Elijah claims that he doesn’t have a cell phone, and that he only is able to communicate through a texting app on an iPod. She tells them that her existing, real life boyfriend is supportive, which is not something that most men would do. The boys decide that they want to travel to Delaware to meet Solana (who, fittingly, works in a salon, and has enormous gauges)
They meet her at her work, and she describes how she and Elijah’s relationship worked when they were young, MySpace lovers. She explains that she used to be able to talk to him when he had a house phone, but he was only ever able to call her because he had a “super strict mom”. Then, he fell off the face of the earth. When he resurfaced on Facebook, he told her that his mom put him on lockdown and cut off all communication with her. Nev asks her if she has asked Elijah to video chat, and she says that he claims that he doesn’t have a webcam… Solana wants to make sure that her relationship with Elijah is something that is intangible before she moves on with her boyfriend Danny.
Solana and Danny
Nev and Max now take the time to research Elijah and his online persona. They start out by searching his phone number on an online database, and it comes out as a 33 year old woman named Denise. Nev surmises that it may be a sister or another family member. Max thinks that Elijah could be a woman that has been catfishing Solana since she was 13. They then discover that there are many Elijah’s on Facebook, and that he may be a “made up embodiment of Emo dudes”. Yes, he actually said that.
Elijah, the Emo (not wearing a wig)
They then do a Google image search, and find a YouTube video channel with the Elijah that is in the photos. He is videoing himself doing a tutorial on how to Emo scream…guy is odd. Also, on one of his channels, he boasts that he has a brand new camera, which negates his previous claim that he doesn’t have a webcam or a phone. The boys are suspicious that Solana is not talking to the real Elijah, and she’s just talking to a copycat.
Nev and Max call Solana and show her all of their research. Nev shows her the Denise results, and she claims that she has no knowledge of anyone named Denise. They wonder that back when Elijah was 13, she may have been talking to a girl because 13 year olds have high pitched voices and could’ve been tricking her all along. My one question while watching this show is always the same… why don’t people think to do this research themselves? Doesn’t everyone Google search people now?!
Nev plays her the creepy screamer Emo video, and she isn’t sure it is him because she hadn’t talked to him on the phone in years. She’s upset because she sees the video where Elijah’s boasts about his new camera. She wonders how she missed all of this on the internet, which is the same thought that I had. Nev says that they stopped researching there because they think that she should meet him in person. She wants to meet him, just so she can see him in person.
Suddenly, Elijah texts Solana (the magic of editing!) and she texts back to say that she wants to meet. He asks “what if I’m not who you think I am?” that automatically sets off alarms, but Elijah agrees and Solana texts back that she’s excited to meet him. They video chat Solana’s whipped boyfriend and she tells him that she’s going to meet Elijah. Clearly, he’s crestfallen, but she doesn’t really seem to care about his feelings at sell and goes forward with the trip.
Right before the trip, Solana tells them that she hasn’t heard a word from Elijah since the night before, and that she’s having second thoughts. She decides to go anyway, because she wants closure before she can move forward with Danny. They arrive in Minnesota, and she says that she misses Danny but is excited to see what happens.
The next day, they get in the car and drive to the address that Elijah gave them. Solana is visibly nervous (aka hyperventilating), but she gets out of the car anyway and reveals her beetlejuice pants. She doesn’t want to knock on the door, but Nev does it for her.
A man comes to the door, and Nev asks if he’s Elijah, and the man says no, introduces himself as Joshua, and asks “do you want to come in and meet him?” the guy is utterly creeptastic. They go into the house, and Joshua walks down a set of stairs as Nev, Max, and Solana panic upstairs. Solana says what we all are thinking at this point…”we’re all going to die!”
Lo and behold, Joshua doesn’t come upstairs with an ax, but Elijah actually appears…honestly, I thought it was Joshua with a wig…but I guess not! He actually doesn’t have a webcam, sold his camera to pay for rent, and shows them that he only has an iPod for communication. The story that his mom pulled him off of the internet is true, and he also explains that he has a famous online persona because of a video he made for a person on The Voice.
Solana and Elijah go downstairs to talk, and they have an awkward exchange about how he thinks she’s “super cute”. Upstairs, Nev and Max say that Solana now has some thinking to do now that Elijah is actually real. Solana is still shell shocked from the initial meeting, and feels more chemistry now that she’s met Elijah in person. She is more confused now than ever before. They drive away, and discuss the experience. Nev asks if she feels that there is something brewing between her and Elijah, and she says that she feels more chemistry with Elijah…from the 5 seconds of meeting him in person.
They meet Elijah at the (stereotypical) skate park, and Elijah shows off his (non) skills. Cue adorable montage of everyone bonding, and Nev making a fool of himself trying to skateboard. Elijah wants to get a matching tattoo with Solana, so that when they stand next to each other it will make a picture of a strong lion and lioness…EW. Solana says that she’s agreeable to that awful idea, and is full of emotions at meeting Elijah. I wonder how her boyfriend will feel about her new ink.
The next day, Solana (now with ramen noodle hair) reads a journal entry. She reads the entry while she gets the tattoo with Elijah, and I was expecting her to say that she was in love with Elijah and was going to leave Danny. But, she decides that she has never loved anyone more than Danny, and leaves Elijah with closure and a permanently hideous reminder of him on her skin. She’s excited to go home to Danny, anndddd that’s where the episode ends, so that MTV can shamelessly plug a terrible after show hosted by our lovely boys who clearly love each other. Luckily, I’m willing to watch this just to see where Solana, Danny, and Elijah are now.
Solana (now with bubblegum pink hair) reveals that when she got home, her and Danny went straight to the courthouse and got married. Elijah reveals that he’s been talking to someone, and that he and Solana are still best friends.
What do you guys think about this episode? Were you as excited about the crazy hairstyles, Nev and Max loving each other, and horrible tattoos as I was?
Recap Author: Kara S.
Photo Credit: MTV