We are nearing the end of a season of milestones for the Fuller House family. Following the calendar from the end of summer to New Year's Eve, the perfect penultimate episode should — of course — take place on Christmas.
A special episode calls for a special recap, so here's what we learned in "Nutcrackers," using only C-H-R-I-S-T-M-A-S.
Stephanie has been dating Kimmy's brother Jimmy Gibbler, and although he's been M.I.A. the last few episodes, he's back and ready to make things official with those three little words: "I love you." A skittish Steph dodges his proclamation throughout the episode, even changing her seat four times during The Nutcracker in order to avoid having to face it.
Jackson wore it to try and trap his girlfriend, Lola, into a kiss. But when she brushed him off, he got a smackeroo from ol' Mom instead.
Ramona landed a huge role dancing in The Nutcracker as the Rat King, but its extended run meant that she'd miss her best friend Lola's Christmas Eve party. She decides to choose the best of both worlds, dropping by the party for a bit before hitting the stage at the end of act one. However, her dad gets lost on the way, forcing her mom to fill in until she gets there. After Kimmy knocks The Nutcracker in the groin, Ramona is asked to step in as the show's namesake, performing side by side with her mom. (Until the death of the Rat King, of course.)
Renewed by a conversation with her sister (see "T"), Stephanie surprises Jimmy on Christmas morning by letting go of her fear and letting in love.
There's definitely something weird about Steve dating a woman named CJ, who looks exactly like his high school sweetheart, DJ. What's weirder is that Max finds a box hidden under his mom's bed, with the words "Steve and DJ 4EVA" written on it. It contains a necklace that Steve won for her during a school carnival, which makes them wax nostalgic in front of a noticeably uncomfortable CJ. Although Steve revealed his plans to propose to CJ, there's something to be said about going in with your whole heart and not pining over a lost love.
Unable to understand why she can't say "I love you" back to Jimmy, DJ corners Stephanie and spells out her theory. When their mother died, 4-year-old Steph retreated and never really talked about it. She wasn't able to cope with the hurt, and it made her put up walls. Her last 12 relationships only lasted five and a half years total, and something has to change in her heart.
Out of nowhere, Steve's girlfriend CJ brings over her daughter, Rose, who just so happens to be Max's age. Initially rendered speechless, this very brave third-grader not only invites her over for a play date, but professes his love right there on the spot. They share the same favorite flavor of juice and movie, Titanic, even re-enacting a scene from it. It's a little weird considering they're 8 years old, but it's worth it for all the jabs he gets to make at his older brother, Jackson, who seems to always have trouble in this department.
Jimmy reveals that he had been offered a new job in "Auckland," which is not too far fetched considering he's a full-time nature photographer (a thing, apparently). A surprised Steph is supportive, although she'll miss him when he's halfway around the world. Jimmy is confused, since it's only a 30-minute drive away. Wahh, wahh, wahh, wahhhhhh ... he meant "Oakland," just across the way from San Francisco.
They spent an exceedingly long time on this, but failed to call back to the classic 1992 episode of Full House where Steph and Michelle accidentally fly to Auckland thinking it's Oakland. C'mon writers, nostalgia is your specialty!
During the Thanksgiving episode, DJ was unable to wrangle the entire Fuller/Tanner/Gibbler/Katsopolis/Gladstone clan for a proper family photo. Her kids decided to surprise her with one for Christmas instead, but she walked in as they were getting set up. Never fear though, she already had a Santa hat at the ready, because she's DJ Fuller and of course she does.