A Million Little Things Season 4 Episode 14 Review: School Ties


It’s every cancer survivor’s worst nightmare, and now we have to wonder if Gary is okay.

All seemed well for Gary and Maggie on A Million Little Things Season 4 Episode 14. They took a major step in their relationship, but those final moments were a douse of cold water.

Is Gary’s cancer back?

For the most part, “School Ties” was a nice installment where the characters improved their lives, but there were a few dramatic turns.

Out of everyone, Eddie’s arc was the simplest and ended on the happiest note.

It turned out he faced a few issues with intimacy when he and Anna tried to have sex, resulting in a disastrous affair that left both of them awkward and hesitant to talk about it.

But fortunately, they got around to it. Kudos to Eddie for taking the bull by the horns, no pun intended and discussing his performance, or lack of it, while they went on their next date.

He admitted that he was nervous about having sex with her. She’s someone new, and he hasn’t slept with anyone post-accident outside of Katherine.

Eddie had some insecurities about the ordeal, but he bucked up and faced Anna after helping Danny with some of his own. The communication between these two is good, and they’re just a healthy relationship.

For her part, Anna admitted that she did some research after he left, and she came up with some suggestions, even though Eddie beat her to the punch about it all.

It was a simple, easily resolvable conflict between the two. At this rate, Eddie’s storyline with Anna is going so well that you can’t help waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Eddie giving Danny some advice, with an assist from Gary, was a refreshing change of pace. You don’t typically see the two interacting much or sharing that type of bond. And by chance, they happen to be going through similar things.

Danny had a hard time going to a pool party with Milo because he was afraid of what he’d look like compared to the guy Milo kissed. It’s such a teen thing to obsess over.

While it’s still annoying that he got back together with Milo in the first place and intended to go to a party where the guy Milo cheated on him with was, I’m glad Dan got the confidence to attend.

I’m also proud of Gina for her confidence when sitting down with her parents so both women could explain to Ronald what Neal did to them.

Shockingly, Shelly handled Ronald’s return better than one would’ve expected. She seemed happy about Ronald’s place in Gina’s new business venture and her life.

And they got along so well that you could see how they could’ve been happily married once upon a time. In fact, there was an opening for the two of them to rekindle things when Shelly opened up about what happened between them.

Context is everything, and Shelly confiding in Gina about her trauma and the sexual abuse she experienced filled in some blanks with this often insufferable character.

Gina and her mother have always had this chasm between them, but they spoke to each other during that conversation, not as mother and daughter but as two survivors.

For years, Neal hurt Shelly too, sexually abused her, and she blocked all of it out. It was something her mind protected her from until he moved to Boston.

And when that happened, Shelly was so traumatized that she couldn’t maintain a sexual relationship with Ronald, and she would rather he assume she cheated than tell him the truth.

The truth is I left because your mother was having an affair.


Ronald was nothing but sympathetic and supportive of Shelly when she told him the truth, and it was a beautiful scene that felt like they were on the path toward healing.

But then, when Gina shared her part, Ronald’s anger got the better of him. And frankly, there should be space for all the complicated feelings from all of this.

Shelly is a survivor and her experience and reactions to what she endured manifest differently. But Ronald’s first emotion is, that of anger, is valid, too.

He has spent years beating himself up about what type of father he was to Gina. But as a father — a man– it probably kills him that he wasn’t around to protect his baby girl from molestation from another male family member.

And as someone on the outside of the situation, it’s unfathomable to him that Shelly would ever allow Neal anywhere around Gina in the first place since she knew better than anyone what he was capable of doing.

With more conversation, this family can work through all of this. Only time will tell.

And it’s also a good thing that Rome got the confidence to speak directly to Dennings about the impact he left on him rather than his original plan of exposing him at a school assembly.

Am I the only one who still isn’t vibing with this entire storyline? Again, personally, what Rome endured and the lingering effects — none of that is foreign. Hell, it’s even relatable, but this storyline felt contrived and came out of the blue.

Tyrell: Hey, I get it. I’m all about speaking truth to power, but have you thought about your friend Dre and what it could do to the black students who go there?
Rome: I’m doing this for those kids and the kids who came before me and after me so that they don’t have to go through these things again. It’s the right thing to do.

It would’ve been better if we focused on other aspects of Rome’s depression and how he’s coping. The arc felt like a distraction even if they tried to tie it together when Tyrell pointed out that he understands Rome is having a hard time right now.

But even Tyrell changed his tune about Rome’s intentions when he overheard some microaggressions Dennings spewed while speaking to Rome.

He assumed the documentary would bring in more money from the donors and implied that they were only showing it for that reason, as if the content wasn’t of importance.

And yeah, Dennings sounded a bit like an ass, especially when he had the unmitigated gall of trying to take credit for Rome’s success.

But in the end, it was a relief that Rome didn’t air Dennings out while addressing the students. It wasn’t the place for it, and it gave Dennings too much power, focused on the problematic white man at the expense of the good things Dre was trying to do and all of these students and their experiences.

As a result, it was satisfying when Rome still got his moment to confront Dennings. He got to say all the things that have held him back and how damaging Dennings inaction was on Rome from that point forward.

It was the most authentic, raw, and moving this new storyline has been since its introduction. Dennings thought he was doing Rome a favor by not putting a spotlight on the wrong done. He felt he spared Rome from more teasing.

However, he diminished the racial harassment Romer received as if it was kids being kids and was some mild bullying instead of a blatant act of racism.

And he still thought of himself as this perfect, influential teacher who deserved kudos for shaping Rome. Little did he know that he left an impact and shaped him alright — he did so in all the worst ways.

It was emotional when Rome stated that he spent the next 30 years second-guessing himself in situations like that because of Dennings. And we didn’t get much of a reaction from Dennings after that confrontation, but it wasn’t about him in the first place.

Rome could at least leave his alma mater knowing that his documentary moved the students, regardless of color, and he had a lasting impact on them and provided words that they couldn’t find themselves.

And he got to give Dre the kudos he deserved for making a real difference from within a problematic system.

Katherine also hightailed it back to school for her high school reunion. The beauty of her relationship with Greta is how we see all the ways she’s coming out of her shell and becoming a freer, lighter, happier version of herself. She’s become braver, too.

Greta guides Katherine out of her comfort zone without even trying. She gives Katherine the encouragement she needs, but she doesn’t push her, and the approach works wonders for Katherine.

Ironically, Katherine was a third wheel at the reunion when Randy, the man her mother was trying to set her up with, and Greta reminisced on everything they got into during high school.

And it hit Katherine that even Randy, who she assumed was a one-dimensional nerd, had more fun and lived a little during school. The reunion made her think about how she let her desire to make her mother proud dictate every facet of her life.

Everything you are and everything you’ve been through, they’re the reasons I’ve fallen for you all over again.


She kept her head down and did her work, and she’s achieved so much, but it came at the expense of having fun, figuring out what’s best for her and what she wanted, and living.

It’s amazing how little moments like accidentally breaking the shelf and stealing the plaque with her name on it liberate Katherine. When she does these little things that seem so stupid or inconsequential to other people, it’s risky enough to make her feel alive.

But her riskiest move yet was explaining to her mother that it was her choice to have the tattoo and then kissing Greta in front of her. Greta is kind and patient, and she understood that coming out for Katherine would be a process as she figures things out for herself. She didn’t push or judge her in the least.

But it shocked the hell out of HER when Katherine kissed her in front of her mother. It was a massive step for Katherine, one bound to change everything for her.

The move also felt like it solidified her and Greta’s relationship.

Maggie and Gary have picked up where they left off in their relationship instead of starting fresh. Good and bad, they’re deep in the throes of a serious relationship where they’re talking about having children, and one of them is facing another health scare.

Their little game felt classic for them. It wasn’t too surprising when Gary thought he’d get the jump on her by planting Colin’s tracker in her so he could win.

But he never could’ve envisioned that he’d see her at a fertility clinic.

The good thing for Maggie is that she has ample time and eggs to have children in the near future without rushing right to it. She reserved telling Gary about it until she knew she was okay, but she should’ve known better.

Gary is always her support system no matter the circumstance; she could’ve gotten straight to the point without all the cloak and dagger secrecy.

Interestingly, they didn’t have a detailed discussion about what this meant for THEM, but they were on the same page about it anyway. It wasn’t even a question for either of them if they intended to have children with one another.

Gary had a brief moment of freaking out to Eddie about it, but he and Maggie made so many assumptions when they talked. Perhaps it works for these two who know each other in and out anyway.

Whether we have the green light, or the red light, or the purple disco light, we have each other. And I need you to understand that all that really matters is you.


Gary was ready for fatherhood with Darcy, so things shouldn’t be different for Maggie.

But they could barely celebrate the news when their sexytime took a severe turn. Part of Maggie knowing Gary inside and out is her familiarity with his body. She felt a lump on his chest, and it was like the air got sucked out of the room.

Fans have speculated that Gary would have a cancer scare and that it could come back. Sadly, those fans were onto something.

Ideally, it’s a benign lump. We know how the prospect of his cancer returning is Gary’s worst fear on earth. He was getting to a point where he wasn’t living in a perpetual state of fear.

Maggie: I think I felt a lump.
Gary: Please, say made you look.

We know he gets checked out regularly, so there’s hope that they caught it early, but it doesn’t make this situation any less scary.

It’s the type of dramatic turn of events you’d expect from this series. I wouldn’t put it past them to have a reverse situation where Maggie steps in as Gary’s support, mirroring how he was there for her during her last battle.

But, oof, this one hurts.

Over to you, AMLT Fanatics.

What’s your reaction to Gary’s cancer scare? What will happen now that Katherine is “out” to her mother? Sound off below!

You can watch A Million Little Things online here via TV Fanatic.

Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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