Ugly Betty 3.21- Born Identity
Guest starring Rasche as Calvin Hartley, Derek Riddell as Stuart, Ralph Macchio as Archie Rodriguez and Alec Mapa as Suzuki St. Pierre.
Well, okay so it wasn’t too hard to guess what this episode would be about. The title was rather forthright on that score…
And indeed. Meade Publications is ready to party with Cal Hartley making time in his busy schedule to give Mead Publications its bailout. Betty is at the bar where Stuart and Christine are shooting darts into Wilhelmina’s face, and convinces her to come back to MODE, saying that work will get her mind off of the baby. Plus, there’s coconut cake.
All the employees of MODE meet en masse to greet Mr. Hartley, who decides that he wants to see Willie’s baby. Guess he’s not all that busy after all. He goes into Wilhelmina’s office, and… baby William is gone! Kidnapped! No one at Mode can leave until they are questioned by the police, and after Betty defends Christina to the detective who interviews her, she too is free to go.
No surprise to anyone, Christina has indeed kidnapped the baby, but she is convinced that it is her child; Wilhelmina must have faked the DNA test. Betty is horrified (especially when they are stopped by a police officer for a busted taillight!) but Christina wins her over and they agree to take the baby to a safe place.
In the meantime, Daniel sees Wilhelmina upset over the kidnapping and asks Mr. Hartley to postpone the signing of the contract. He agrees and says that he will meet with Daniel in the morning. Marc and Willie view the camera footage and see Stuart sneaking away with the baby. Wilhelmina confesses her crime to Marc- who is disgusted but doesn’t say anything. They decide that the only person Christina would turn to is…. Betty!
Meanwhile, at Casa de Suarez, Archie is using Hilda’s salon as a backdrop for his campaign to show how he supports small businesses. He asks Hilda to tone down her appearance, and she complies, just wanting the day to go well for Archie. Plus, she gets mucho free publicity with his choice of venue. Hilda is less than thrilled when Betty and Christina sneak in with the baby. She flips out, knowing that Archie could lose his chances of being elected. Oh, yeah… plus kidnapping is illegal. But she agrees to distract the news crew so that Betty and Christina can get the baby upstairs. The two friends do so… and come face to face with Ignacio. He asks if there is anyone else that Betty can call, and she thinks of the only criminal she knows… Claire!
Claire is ecstatic at the chance to get Wilhelmina out of her and Daniel’s company and agrees to meet Betty, William and Christina in front of a handy discrete DNA clinic….. Only unfortunately Marc had eavesdropped on Betty’s call to Claire and the police met them there instead. Betty asks Daniel if there’s anything he can do… talk to Wilhelmina perhaps? Anything to help Christina. She says that she believes her, and doesn’t think that William is Daniel’s half-brother. Daniel sighs, but does as Betty asks. Wilhelmina refuses. Christina and Stuart are hauled away to jail, and Betty is left feeling wretched over the whole messed up situation. She knows that William isn’t Wilhelmina’s, but who goes up against The Slater and wins?
Wilhelmina is looking down at the baby in his crib, seemingly gloating that everything has gone well. Marc… well. Marc in this scene was really terrific. He disapproves of Wilhelmina’s actions. The backbone that he’s struggled to develop all season rears up for a moment, but is beat back down into submission by his desire to keep his job. He tells Wilhelmina goodnight, and Willie is left looking down at the crib again to ponder life in general.
Betty and Hilda are sitting at the kitchen table when Archie comes in and tells Betty that he knows that the near-tragedy wasn’t something she did on purpose, and he admires that she is willing to do something like that for her friend. He also advises her to fight dirty if she’s certain that she’s right.
So Betty does. She confronts Wilhelmina with fake spit-up for a DNA test – which Wilhelmina sees through in about three seconds. Betty advises her to tell the truth and leaves, leaving Willie upset. She seems like the same Wilhelmina we’ve known since the early seasons, but now there’s a conscience there too. Wilhelmina holds a press conference and spins everything as just one mistake after another, where of course she comes out smelling like roses. Claire and Daniel are all aquiver with joy knowing that they have no reason to keep Wilhelmina on the payroll since William isn’t Bradford’s baby.
Only there’s a problem. Hartley refuses to sign if they fire Wilhelmina! She had gone to him last night after Betty left and convinced Hartley that he needed someone like her- ruthless- to work for him.
But all’s well that ends well. Baby is reunited with parents- who have decided to go back to Scotland. Betty is distraught to lose her best friend, but wishes the little family well. Christina says that she has learned a lot from Betty- and refuses to give up her dreams of being a designer.
Tune in next week for the finale…. !