As his relationship with Claire deepens, Eric begins to push his friends and family away with his constant lies in A Teacher Episode 4.
When we last left off with A Teacher, Eric and Claire’s dangerous relationship came to a head with a car hook-up in the middle of the homecoming dance. In the aftermath, both Eric and Claire are riding on a high. A Teacher Episode 4 begins with the teen arriving home from the dance feeling like “the man,” specifically the “motherf—ing man.” Within an hour of being with Claire, Eric’s lies have already begun.
Content warning: This series contains sexual situations and depictions of grooming that may be disturbing to some.
Josh and Logan noticed Eric’s absence from the dance. Eric claims that he got sick from all the pre-gaming and left early. Apparently, Mary (Josh’s sister) also bailed early from whatever was going on with her and Logan. In his own words, he says, “She couldn’t hang with the big boys.” Once Josh and Eric are left alone, Josh accuses Eric of lying about where he went. He thinks Eric snuck off with “Steph,” the girl he allegedly met at work. Since it’s safer than the truth, Eric sticks with that story.
A lovestruck Eric then texts Claire to tell her how much fun he had with her the night before. She quickly deletes his messages.
At school, Alison confronts Eric. She’s understandably pissed that he ditched her at the dance, and she’s not buying his “sick” story. Like many people in Eric’s life, she can see through his lies. We’re starting to see the damage that this relationship will cause. Claire will isolate Eric from his friends and family. As MEAWW points out, this episode really makes it evident that Claire is grooming Eric.
In class, Claire asks Eric to meet her after practice for “more SAT tutoring sessions.” While waiting for her in the parking lot, Eric scrolls through his social media feed and likes Claire’s latest post. Seeing his interaction, she scolds him in the car for liking it since anyone can see it. Claire decides it’s time to set some “ground rules” on their illicit relationship. She wants him to change her name in his phone — he already changed it to Steph — and he can’t interact with her on social media anymore. The final rule is that they will only meet on Mondays. Since it is a Monday, Claire and Eric have sex again in her car.
When Claire gets home, she sees Matt cooking dinner for them. She’s acting weird, and Matt tries to figure out what’s going on with her. Instead of having a real conversation, Claire claims she’s had a bad day at work and then goes down on him, perhaps as a way of apology.
It’s the end of the school week, and Eric’s friends are trying to make plans for the weekend. Eric’s mom, Sandy, has a date, so he’ll be babysitting.
During their conversation, Mary interrupts to ask Josh if he can take her home because she’s forgotten an assignment. Logan interjects to offer his chauffeur services, but Mary coldly ignores him. When Josh and Mary leave, Eric tells Logan to back off. Mary is Josh’s sister, and Logan needs to respect that. (She’s also way too young).
Well, Logan admits he has genuine feelings for her but may have taken things too far on homecoming night with the hotel room. He doesn’t go into details, but based on how Mary acted toward him, I get the feeling Logan might have tried to pressure her into something she wasn’t ready for.
Claire’s weekend plans consist of going out for drinks with her teacher friend, Kathryn. At the restaurant, Kathryn notices a hickey on Claire’s neck and attributes it to her husband. Claire rushes to the bathroom to look at it and can’t hide the smirk on her face. It reminds her of Eric, and she sends him a sultry photo on Snapchat.
As happy as he is to see it, Eric’s busy babysitting and can’t exactly start sexting her at the moment. Disappointed, Claire returns to Kathryn just as Eric texts her back and invites her to meet him at their “spot” again in 30 minutes. Claire excuses herself early to meet up with him.
Stupidly, Eric leaves some random neighborhood teen to watch his brothers while he rushes off to see Claire. This time, before they can have sex again, Eric stops her so he can tell her how he truly feels about her — taking yet another bit of advice from Logan, it appears. He wants Claire to know he genuinely likes her. “I like you too, or I wouldn’t be here.”
Well, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that Eric ditching his brothers comes with consequences. His mom beat him home. “When I ask you to watch your brothers Eric, I mean you.”
And she doesn’t buy his lie about going to Logan’s house for a textbook — she called to check. “Don’t lie to me.” That’s the constant refrain in this episode.
One of Eric’s brothers burned himself while he was out. Eric shows concern for his brother, but his mom isn’t in the mood to pacify him. “What do you care?”
When he looks in his mirror and tries to reassure himself that everything in his life is going great because he’s hooking up with Claire, “I’m the motherf—ing man.” It sounds a lot less sincere than the first time he said it.
What did you think of A Teacher Episode 4? Let us know your thoughts and opinions in the comments below!
The first four episodes of A Teacher are now streaming on Hulu. New episodes will be released on Tuesdays going forward.