Petra-Gate

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"Petra-Gate"
Ugly Betty episode
Ugly Betty S01E20 Snap.png
Petra and her "Mother" blackmail Daniel
Episode no. Season 1
Episode 20
Directed by Paul Lazarus
Written by Gabrielle Stanton & Harry Werksman
Production code 120
Original air date 26 April 2007
Episode chronology
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Episode chronology

"Petra-Gate" is the 20th episode from the dramedy series Ugly Betty, which aired on April 26, 2007. The episode was co-written by Gabrielle Stanton and Harry Werksman and directed by Paul Lazarus.

Plot[edit]

After seeing her working relationship with Daniel, her close friendship with Christina, and her chance to date Henry all fall apart, Betty is left with no choice but to turn her back on all three, a la "Frankenstein", this after Daniel tried to ask her about Petra, sees Henry and Charlie argue while trying to get a bagel, and Christina tried to apologize, followed by Hilda climbing into Betty's room after a night out with Santos, which was also noticed the following day by Ignacio after he bought it up.

For Betty, however, she starts to realize that she needs them in her life after all, as she questions herself about whether she should forgive them. Even Hilda and Justin thinks she should, after Hilda reminded her of a similar situation when Betty and a friend from high school, Trina DiPaolo, was planning a "anti-prom" night, until her friend bailed out on Betty after she is asked out. While Betty claimed her story was straight out of Carrie, Hilda told Justin what really happened, since she was there that night.

For Daniel, his aftermath of sleeping with Petra and being blackmailed by Lena would force him to either pay them off or relinquish his EIC job to Alexis. This prompted Henry to question him about a $75,000 check just to pay them off. When Henry told Betty about this, she and Henry began to suspect something wasn't right about Petra, and they were right. It appears that earlier in the day Betty saw Petra buy cigarettes after bumping into each other. As Betty confronts Daniel over this and for not trusting her, Daniel finally admitted that he made a mistake, but decided that he will hand over his editor-in-chief (EIC) duties to Alexis after he tells her about this. But just as Alexis was about see Daniel sign his EIC duties away, Betty and Henry see Lena and Petra walk in. After Betty remembers her buying cigarettes at the stand, she and Henry snatched Petra's purse and picked up Petra's ID, which revealed her real age: 20! When Daniel and Alexis saw this, Daniel tore up the contract and remained co-EIC. While Betty might have saved Daniel's job, she is concerned that he hasn't changed as he heads towards the elevator to go home. And as expected Betty found herself back at the center of Henry's attention, as the two celebrated their latest victory. But as they looked at each other, they are unaware that Charlie has walked in and seen them together.

Betty also resumed her friendship with Christina and as the two talked, Christina told Betty that she could offer info on Wilhelmina's schemes, if she was interested. Betty also decided to forgive her former high school friend as well.

Meanwhile, romance is in the air as Alexis catches the attention of Rodrigo, creative director at MODE Brazil and he asks her out. He is also aware of her being a post-op and to him it doesn't matter anyway. After Wilhelmina tells her that it's time to "put the key in the ignition," Alexis finally answers Rodigo's offer, and later on in the evening the two have sex. The following day, Rodrigo asks Alexis about going to Brazil with him, an offer that may prove to be tempting. Unbeknownst to Alexis, Rodrigo is being paid off by Bradford and Wilhelmina (who suggested the idea to him as a way to get back at "Little Orphan Tranny"), this in exchange for promoting Rodrigo to the EIC job at MODE Brazil by getting Alexis out of the country. This after Bradford offered her $10 million to resign from MODE, leave town, and let Daniel once again take the position of editor-in-chief, which Alexis turned down.

Speaking of Wilhelmina and Bradford, it appears that Wilhelmina might have found a new way into Bradford's heart, so after acquiring fake Viagra pills from Marc, she stepped up her plot to lure Bradford in. As the two finish talking to Rodrigo, Bradford reminded Wilhelmina that he won't divorce Claire, but it looks like the "pills" Bradford took might be working, and Wilhelmina seems to be pleased.

Amanda flirts with Tavares, a designer who she believes is gay, after she falls for his exciting fashions, which impresses even Wilhelmina, who turned him away earlier. But as Amanda falls head over heels for him and his designs, she discovers that he is actually a straight guy and that he's using this ruse just to get his designs noticed, which gives Amanda an idea to help him, even as she falls for him.

Over at the Suarezes', Santos gives Hilda a little surprise, which is a wedding proposal as he asks her to marry him. The news may be good for Justin, who's happy that he finally proposed to his mother, but Ignacio isn't and will not accept Santos into the family because of his past experiences. However, Hilda does accept. But before that can happen, Ignacio breaks the news to the family that his caseworker has informed him that he'll have to return to Mexico.

Production[edit]

The scene where Betty sees Petra buy cigarettes at the newsstand is actually Downtown Los Angeles; a Los Angeles County MTA bus can be spotted in the background. Also, When Betty enters Daniel's office after discovering that Petra was not 16, you could see the camera through the window's reflection (the window on the right).

In this episode, we learned that Henry is a fan of the soap opera All My Children, which is also produced by ABC. However, when he referenced trivia about Erica Kane's daughter Kendall Hart going after Erica's fourth husband (when Erica was a Chandler at the time), Henry was off by two: Kendall was going after Erica's sixth husband (which was Dimitri Marick).

The episode also had the working titles Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad? and Petra-Fined.[1]

Reception[edit]

Although Entertainment Weekly's Karen Leigh gave the episode high marks, she notes "Still, I have a major problem with the fact that so many of its characters — Bradford, Walter, even Amanda — are totally cardboard. We do get the rare bit of compassion or sadness from them (witness Marc's coming out to Mama LuPone), but though I think they're funny, when I compare them with fleshed-out Betty, Henry, Daniel, and even Wilhelmina, I can't help thinking that Betty's often fluffy story lines would benefit if these people had a little more soul."[2]

References[edit]

Also starring[edit]

Guest stars[edit]