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Truth or Dare

...or 180 Turnaround, Bright Eyes

At Alfea on Sunday, the six Winx girls, as well as several other students, are taking an advanced placement power convergence class, taught by Miss Faragonda. Why an advanced placement class? Why would they be put in an AP class on a subject they know nothing of? Bloom says they combine their powers all the time, but Faragonda explains that converging their powers is very different from combining them, and how power converging can greatly multiply their powers, but that convergence can only happen when there's a connection between the fairies involved... in other words, they basically need to be friends. I'm kinda' surprised that Luna and Priscilla aren't in the class, since they seem to be the closest friendship among the random students at Alfea. Ah well. Stella gets hyped up about it.

At Red Fountain, we see a Red Fountain student named Jared. He looks much younger than the Specialists and the Winx girls, but as far as I can tell, he's supposed to be about their age. Jared is looking at a bunch of random photos of Musa, pinned to Riven's bulletin board, not all of them overly flattering. Jarad asks if Riven's around, but when he finds Riven is not, he takes one of the photos of Musa. probably the nicest one, too. Riven's gonna' be hella' mad when he finds that picture gone!

Back at Alfea, Stella wants to take a power convergence nap on a bench in the quad. The other five Winx girls are hanging around, as well. Flora asks Bloom what's become of the pixies and the homesickness spell put on them in last week's episode, and Bloom explains that Palladium permanently removed their homesickness spell, and they'll be cured for good after they sleep for four hours. Cut to Palladium, casting the spell on the six affected pixies: Piff, Lockette, Amore, Chatta, Tune, and Digit. Kiko hops around, sniffing Tune. Tune shrieks, and smacks Kiko with her umbrella, scolding Kiko for being rude. Gotta get a cute, uppity Tune moment in there somewhere! Palladium laughs. We then see the six pixies magically making little beds to sleep in.

Back at the quad, Stella mentions that she's teamed up with Bloom for the power convergence class. Musa asks Layla if she'd want to team up with Musa for the power convergence class, but Layla puts herself down, saying she isn't any good, and Musa wouldn't want her as a partner. Right then, Jared goes up to Musa, asking if he's too early, then rambles on, eventually saying they could go for lunch and a movie, unless that were too much for a first date. Musa is completely confused, and asks what Jarad is talking about. Layla, also unsure of what is going on, wisely goes off. Jared wonders if he got the date wrong... the other Winx girls are noticing now, with Tecna and Flora seeming surprised, and for Stella, who is smiling contentedly. Jared says they could still go out. Musa angrily asks who set up the date. Jared answers that Stella did, and is surprised that Stella didn't tell her about it. Musa storms off, but Jared rides his hoverbike in front of Musa, apologizing for what just happened. Musa forgives him, saying that it's just that Stella doesn't approve of Riven--with a very angry emphasis on "Stella." Jared says he's the editor for the Red Fountain Sentinel, and that he'd still like to interview her for the magazine if she goes for a ride with her. Musa, being nice, agrees. As the two take off on Jared's hoverbike. Stella and Bloom watch, with Stella confident that all is going well. Bloom smiles too, seemingly agreeing with Stella.

On Musa's and Jared's "date," they sit on a beach-like shoreline, asking her questions. Musa is not sure why any of this would be interesting for the article Jared is writing, but Jared says it'll make a great story. A little later, Musa's eating a candy bar, then lies down for a nap, as Jared, finds some lilies to pick nearby. The pixies, meanwhile, are tossing and turning a bit in their beds. Or at least Tune is.

After the "date," Jared drops Musa off at Alfea. He then presents Musa with some lilies, which Musa said she liked in the interview, then says he hopes that they could go on a real date some time. Musa says that Jared was a nice guy, but that she already has a boyfriend, but that they could still be just friends. A little later, Stella and Bloom rush up to Musa, wanting to know how the "date" went. Stella asks if Musa was glad she set the date up, but Musa's mad that Stella did so without her permission.

Stella: Are you glad I set it up?
Musa: You really should've asked me first.
Stella: If I'd asked, you would've just said no. Please don't be made at me, Musa, didn't you like Jared?
Musa: Come on! That is not the point!
Stella: I knew it! You two are a perfect match!

And of course, Stella's right. And Musa just gets madder because she knows Stella is right. Otherwise, she would've given a straight answer, of course. Stella and Musa continue to bicker, with Musa upset about Stella setting up the date, until Musa ultimately storms off, with Stella yelling at her as she's running off.

Stella: I'm never wrong about this stuff! My matchmaking record is impeccable! I was trying to do her a favor!
Bloom: Did you consider she might not be looking for a boyfriend?
Stella: Sure I did, but people don't always know what's best for them, and hey, maybe they'll hit it off!

Bloom thinks Stella should probably stop with matchmaking for a while, but Stella quickly reminds Bloom who sent Sky to her house in the first place. Granted, she invited the other Specialists too, but Stella did point out Sky, specifically, for Bloom as a good guy for her. Course, whether or not Sky can really be called a "good guy" for Bloom....

Over at Shadowhaunt are the three Trix sisters and Lord Darkar. Stormy asks permission, on Darcy's behalf, that since it's her birthday, that he should allow her to have fun wreaking havoc at Alfea. Stormy's bit here is small, but I like it: it shows that, at least on some level, that they do... well, maybe not love, but they've got each other's backs, and care for each other. Darkar says Darcy has been bad, and he's proud of her for that, so he will allow Darcy to go out to wreak some havoc.


Another day in the convergence class, the students are paired up in, I'm guessing, a different classroom, since the desks in this class are made for two people to sit at. Tecna and Flora try to have a chest opened by converging nature and electricity, but it does not work. Flora complains to Tecna, saying that technology could never control nature. Musa's and Layla's project does not work either. Stella and Bloom don't even have a project ready, telling Miss Faragonda that they got into a fight about how to converge their powers.

A little later, the six Winx girls are in the magical reality chamber, with Faragonda telling them that they need practice, and they'll be having a test in here tomorrow. I wonder why Faragonda is only testing these specific six girls. Then again, she probably knows that they're a tight-knit group: randomly putting, say, Stella and Amaryl together would not have great results, after all! Stella notices Jared watching them from outside the chamber, teasing Musa about it. Musa angrily insists that he's just doing research for his article. Bloom says they need to bond, and to stop fighting. Stella says they could have a sleepover and tell best friendship stories, which causes Layla to start sobbing and run off.

Musa: I don't know what you said, but you always hurt people's feelings!
Stella: Sensiteeve! I didn't mean to upset her... I have feelings too, you know!

Musa's being upset is understandable, since no matter what Stella did, Musa's just going to be ticked off with her. Stella's comment didn't seem to warrant Layla's reaction, though. Then again, Layla's been on edge, and thinking about past friendships isn't helping. Musa goes after Layla, who's gone outside. Musa tries to tell her that Layla can tell her what's wrong, that they're friends. Musa correctly assumes it's the friendship-story slumber party that's got Layla upset. Layla says she's never really had a best friend in a really long time. Musa says that she's never had any close friends before she went to Alfea. Which isn't quite true. Back in "Secret Guardian," Musa mentioned a friend she had who died after her castle was infected with a case of little red bugs that killed fairies with one bite. Guess now that she's at Alfea, she's forgotten all about her poor, dead friend. Or more likely, it's just bad writing. Musa goes on to say that she grew up as a loner, and she still needs her alone time sometimes. She successfully convinces Layla to come to the sleepover. Bloom comes out to, and tells Layla that she needs to come to the sleepover, and Layla happily agrees by this point.

Outside Red Fountain, as Jared is returning, Darcy, in a gypsy disguise, tries to sells Jared jewely for the Gypsy Scouts. Really cool dress on Darcy's part! As she starts to hand a necklace to him with a crystal on the end, it hypnotizes him with a few magic words from Darcy.

In the magical reality chamber, for the Winx girls' sleepover, Stella starts to tell a story of when she was in the fifth grade, and how she had a giant crush on Robbie of Emphelion. Stella was so cute back in fifth grade, with a dorky outfit and really dorky glasses! Funny to see that Stella wasn't always the fashion expert she is today. Obviously grew out of her awkward phase! She says taht Robbie had a crush on Kimberly of Olympus. I wonder if she's Diaspro's sister, or something: Kimberly looks a lot like a younger Diaspro. Stella says that she wanted to ask Robbie to the spring dance, but that Robbie asked Kimberly to the spring dance, and she said yes. Stella tried to put a breakout spell on Kimberly, but instead of breaking out in pimples, she broke her leg. Stella says that she was excited that she might get to go with Robbie to the dance, but he still went with Kimberly, leg in cast and all: little dorky Stella was fuming watching the two, sitting on the bench during the dance! But now, years later, she and her friends all get a good laugh about it.

Meanwhile, danger lurks in the halls of Alfea, as Jared, in Darcy's hypnotic trance, goes to the magical reality chamber's controls to let Darcy cast a spell on it, and then he leaves.


Back in the girls' room, Bloom is imitating Griselda singing the Alfea song. At least I think it's Bloom. Neat, actually! I could only imagine that Griselda would have a bad singing voice, as Bloom's imitation would suggest! We see the girls are playing truth or dare, as Stella asks Musa the question. Musa chooses "truth," saying she knows better than to do a Stella "dare"--Stella admits she would've had Musa kiss Knut. Stella would be the "tough" truth or dare player, wouldn't she? Stella asks Musa if she has a crush on Jared. Musa doesn't like the question, but Tecna wants to hear the answer, too. Musa gives a roundabout answer, saying that she thought she knew how she felt about Riven until she met Jared. Stella, ever-so-sweetly, tells Musa that she only set them up because he's better than Riven, and Musa deserves the best. Stella honestly believes she's doing what's best for Musa. That makes it hard to stay mad at her. Course, that's what makes her Stella!

The next day, the six Winx girls are inside the magical reality chamber. Palladium explains the chamber to Musa. Jared is there; Musa says hi, but Jared just blankly walks away. Miss Faragonda says she's sending them to a desert, but they actually appear to be in a cold forest. The forest soon turns upside-down kinda', with the Winx girls suddenly walking on the sky, but then another ground starts growing beneath them. Palladium tells the girls that they were sent to the realm of Grim, which was supposed to have been deleted from the magical reality chamber. Jared watches evil. Or actually, Darcy watching through his eyes. Palladium sends an exit code--a basic sphere of light--into the software, which the girls can use to escape if they can get hold of it, as Jared quietly sneaks off, with Faragonda looking suspiciously. An ugly purple wolf-like beast runs up to attack the girls, as the exit code is sent to the girls. The girls have a bit of trouble getting ahold of it, though, as a holographic Darcy appears, tripling the dark magic in pseudo-Grim, and having the beast eat the exit code, while increasing the size and strength of the beast tremendously. The girls change to their winx forms. Musa tries a sonic blast on the beast, but it has no effect. Bloom suggests they all attack at the same time, but again, the monster isn't affected in the least. Palladium tells the girls to try something powerful. Tecna asks why Palladium doesn't just turn off the chamber, and Palladium warns that if he did turn off the chamber, that everything would disappear, including the Winx girls.


The six Winx girls are flying away from the beast, as Bloom, thinking back to the convergence class, realizes they need to converge their powers to beat the beast and get the exit code from it. Tempting as it is to say "of course Bloom's the one who thought of it," I can't fault the girl for trying to save all their butts in a desperate situation such as this. Outside the chamber, Faragonda rounds up Jared, telling Palladium that Jared was under a spell, and the magical reality chamber was hacked through him. The girls' six pixies fly up to Faragonda, asking to be sent in to help. A little later, Jared comes out of his trance, with Faragonda explaining to him that he was put under a spell.

In the chamber, Layla uses her powers to create a giant purple water-molecule-based woman. Flora gives it strength with Venus vine wrap. Tecna gives it brain power with cerebrum processus implantus. Interesting spell name! Stella gives it sun vision. Bloom gives it dragon valor. That makes the giant purple woman more physically powerful, since the name itself does not make it too obvious. Needing the power of speech to say the spell with the other Winx girls, Musa grants it speech. As the six Winx girls, plus the Frankenstein monster the girls created, cast the spell, the monster explodes, and the girls get the exit code. Faragonda gives them an A+ for the "accidental" test here.

Outside Alfea, Jared apologizes for messing up with Musa, unsuccessfully trying to impress her. Musa still says she'd like to be friends, and Jared gives Musa a kiss on the cheek, surprising Musa. Down, Jared, down. She said friend. As in "just friends"! Bloom declares the Winx girls best friends forever, but Layla's off to the side. Stella grabs Layla to join the rest of them, and then the girls declare, again, "best friends forever"!

Other Stuff

Not a lot happened. Musa had conflicts with Stella, and her own feelings. Darcy tried to kill the Winx girls without fighting them herself. But still, the whole thing with Musa... wonderful!

First, Stella... much as I love Stella--and she's still my favorite, mind you--but this episode didn't put her in the greatest light. I fully believe she was trying to help Musa, and she honestly felt that hooking Musa and Jared up was the right thing to do, but it wasn't the right thing to do anyway. For one, not caring that Musa didn't want to be set up with anyone besides Riven. And two, Stella having such an ego as to not believe that Musa just "doesn't know what she wants." However wrong Stella may have been, it is part of the Stella we all know and love. And I put no blame on Stella for the "Layla running off" incident. And after seeing poor dorky fifth-grade Stella, you have to love her!

Musa has pretty much completely redeemed herself for her annoying presence last season, and pegs herself definitively here as the cute, bubbly, easy-to-anger girl. The moodiness perfectly understandable, though, considering the awkward position Stella put her in.

Riven versus Jared... Jared versus Riven... in a way, Jared may be better suited for Musa, as Musa's too full of conflicting emotions, and Riven needs a girl very much not like that. Jared just doesn't know when to give up, though, and while he accepted Musa's terms of "just friends," he didn't seem to take it to heart completely. He seems like he's going to try to coyote himself after Musa's love.

Darcy's role was surprisingly small, only appearing three times, and only substantially during the short gypsy disguise scene. It was enough to understand what she was doing, though, and why she was doing it--'cause she can! And Darcy was really cute in the gypsy getup!

And the pixies didn't do much, but gotta' love Tune for whacking Kiko with the umbrella. Why was Kiko sniffing her like that, anyway? I mean, Kiko's been around the pixies for a while now, and he oughta' know better than to be sniffing Tune by now!

8 out of 10 on the old scale.