Lucy Hallowell wrote at AfterEllen, “You tell us there might be lesbians on a television show and we’ll come sit on your feet until they appear.” The Fosters was on. We came. We sat. The season started off a little slow, with gay moms Stef (Teri Polo) and Lena (Sherri Saum) taking in foster child Callie (Maia Mitchell) because she has “issues” with “male authority figures.” Thank heaven for lesbians! Frankly, it was a little odd that everything with Callie went so smoothly: Callie dropped the word “dykes” at the dinner table, but that was a homophobia red herring; Callie seemed like she had a creepy boyfriend named Jude, but actually she had a scrawny little brother in peril named Jude (Hayden Byerly); Callie seemed like she was selling drugs, but actually Mariana (Cierra Ramirez) was selling drugs. But then! Then the feelings started. Stef and Lena’s relationship got deeper and more complex. Callie and Brandon (David Lambert) developed forbidden affections that are slightly inappropriate but mostly very sweet. Mariana and Jesus (Jake T. Austin) lied for each other and sacrificed for each other. Jude needed a lot of championing.
In preparation for the season finale tonight, here are some of the tear-jerker moments from the first season:
1. When Stef can’t get mad at Lena for taking in foster children out of the goodness of her heart. Hella. Healthy. Relationship. Almost too healthy.
Where did she find you, Stef?
2. When Callie and Jude are reunited.
A brother and a sister have a single heart.
3. When Lena is upset and leaves Mariana’s quinceañera to go outside and cry, and Stef is so goddamn sweet about it.
5. When Mariana apologizes for not dancing with her moms at her quinceañera, and they just give her a hug.
Ladies, I would like a mama sandwich, too.
7. This secret little smile at Lexi in the hallway.
I’ll say it again: young love!
8. When Lena talks to Jude after his classmates beat him up for having blue fingernails, and she comforts him and keeps it real at the same time. It’s an effed up world.
YOU ARE SO RIGHT — there are no easy answers, Lena, and also I’m tearing up.
9. When Connor paints his nails blue in solidarity with weird little Jude.
Solidarity gets me every time.
11. When Brandon tells Callie he’s sorry about her awful dad, and then he brushes her hair out of her face.
Yeah, fine, it’s a little incest-y. It was still sweet.
12. That time when Stef gave baby Jesus and Mariana lollipops, but Mariana would only take a lollipop from her brother.
13. This poem that Stef and Lena gave to the twins the day they adopted them is just… my heart can’t take this.
Chiasmus has never been so moving.
14. This insanely cliché and yet totally perfect moment outside the hospital, when Mariana thinks maybe her moms don’t love her anymore.
15. When Stef proposes to Lena while a bullet is lodged somewhere near her spine.
Great, Stef, now I’m dying too.