Lo’s long-awaited return to cable television was arguably one of the most refreshing homecomings in ‘Laguna’-‘Hills’ history. The girl who undoubtedly mastered the art of side-kicking made a New Year’s cameo, in light of Lauren’s need to be with, you know, genuine friends. I would have loved some more Audrina-Lo interaction, especially considering Audrina’s near-solidification of her status as Lauren’s new best friend, though the Lo-Heidi interaction certainly sufficed. Spencer asked Heidi to move into a condo with him (hm, condos seem to be a staple ‘Hills’ motif), and, though Heidi left the question unanswered (or at least the cameras did), it felt like she was leaning towards a Jason-reminiscent YES. The most satisfying twist of the New Year’s-themed episode, though, was surely the moment where Heidi confided in Lo about the moving-in question, and, nobody should’ve been even remotely shocked when Lauren found out, secondhand, from a seemingly unaware Lo.

Watching Whitney play softball wasn’t nearly as fulfilling as learning she actually plays on a sports team (fyi, she alternates between the catcher and outfield positions) or learning that she kissed three different guys last New Year’s. (Now, who said that Whitney wasn’t interesting enough to have at least a co-starring role, or, for that matter, a show of her own?) Whitney and Lauren’s coffee date, retrospectively analyzing the New Year’s fiasco, felt like an encounter with one of Lauren’s so-called genuine friends. (Lauren expressed her discontent at Whitney’s absence from her New Year’s get-to-together.) Whitney’s uncharacteristic bitching that dominated her first-ever real storyline last week really seems to be paying off.

The exclusivity that just oozed out of Lauren’s simultaneous interaction with Audrina and Heidi almost made me feel for Heidi (actually, it did). It’s quite understandable that Audrina and Lauren would become significantly closer in the event of a Heidi betrayal, but, as Heidi noted, she shouldn’t have to choose between best friend and boyfriend. (It is also quite understandable that Heidi would want to go out to dinner with her boyfriend on New Year’s Eve.) Lauren’s blatant shunning of Heidi at the countdown was as unjustifiable as Lauren’s introducing of Lo to Audrina (I mean, come on, Audrina must have seen at least one LB Season 1 episode).

Heidi seemed pretty close to confident that she’d continue to live with Lauren, but Spencer’s incessant accusations of disloyalty started to get to her. Though the question remains a question, the backlash of Lauren’s finding out about the whole thing from someone other than Heidi herself will definitely have prodigious implications for the already rocky friendship. Any attempt to conceal the truth, after all, will have just as potent of an effect on a best-friendship than that ginger had on Lo’s brain. Anyone else shocked that Lo knew the word, “potent?” Maybe it was just the ginger speaking.

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