In Life Is Wild episode 1, the family moved to South Africa to save the oldest son Jesse from his destructive path and also attempt to unite the stepfamily as one new family. There was some progress, but it’s obviously going to go up and down for years.
It’s time for the kids to go to their new school. The first test is to find someone who speaks English. Katie does bump into Oliver when she arrives, though she also has a couple of girls looking for a catfight watching her interaction with him. But one of them, Lauren, pretends to be nice. After class, Tumelo asks Katie to ask her father if he can be his apprentice, in exchange for help in Zulu class.
It’s not long before Jesse gets into trouble, fighting with another boy. Chase also gets into trouble, refusing to answer to his real name and preferring to be called by his adopted African name (and he gets stuck with a teacher unwilling to humor him). Mia follows suit, as her lion gets loose in the classroom.
Jo’s on a mission to convert the lodge into something that actually functions, but Art’s fighting her every step of the way. Still, I get the impression she’ll get her way regardless. She goes to spy on the competition and finds out Art is right and that they need something totally different. Her theory is to convert the lodge into an environmentally friendly lodge, an expensive proposition that gets Jesse to believe they’re going to stay there for more than a year, which he’s right about if the show doesn’t get cancelled.
Oliver invites Katie to a concert. Her new “friends” tell him the lie she told them: that she already has a boyfriend. Of course, it’s not long before Jesse tells them truth and says she doesn’t actually have a boyfriend. Lauren and Emily butt in and weasel their way into being third and fourth wheels, as Lauren, who used to date Oliver, is hoping to win him back.
Jesse skips detention to go hang out with Oliver. Obviously, that doesn’t go over well, so his mom tells him that he has to go to detention and on top of that can’t have the job he found (which he wants because of a girl) while he was skipping it.
As Oliver warned her, Katie’s unable to get anything done while hanging out with Lauren and Emily.
The wildebeests start collapsing one by one. Colin has no idea why.
Oliver advises Jesse to just go over to the girl he’s been after so she can shoot him down and they can just go home. As usual, he doesn’t have much luck, but he does inquire about the job in the process of being shot down. He pretends to have cleaned up his act so that his parents will let him get the job.
Lauren tricks Katie and gives her directions to the middle of nowhere instead of to the concert. Wow. Shocker. She manages to find her way home but is filthy when she arrives. Tumelo cheers her up by taking her to his favorite place, a place where he can see how much better things have gotten since apartheid ended. Emily tries to apologize and says she didn’t know what Lauren was up to, but Katie doesn’t care. But she does tell her brother Oliver what happened, allowing him to patch things up with Katie.
Jo’s discussing Mara and how they spray the grass green. Colin discovers that this is what’s causing the Wildebeests to get sick.
Colin has some bagels, cream cheese, and the New York Times shipped in for Katie so she has some comforts from home, and they let Jesse get the job.
As we can come to expect, everybody’s happy at the end of the episode. That should last until about 10 minutes into next week’s episode.