It’s been a half-season wait for All American fans to find out what’s had Spencer and Olivia tip-toeing around an obviously not platonic topic.
The wait, however, is now over thanks to “Roll the Dice,” a flashback episode that comes on the heels of Layla confronting Spencer about the mystery surrounding what really happened in Vegas.
While Layla certainly wasn’t happy with the answers she received, we were treated to a layered and emotional missed chance between Spelivia prompted by Jordan and Simone’s ill-advised wedding.
But let me back up a bit and set the stage for an iconic Spencer and Olivia moment that’s worthy of being in The CW hall of fame.
Why didn’t Spencer and Olivia stay in Vegas in All American?
Our favorite group of poorly supervised and jet-setting teens came to Las Vegas at the invitation of Layla to support Coop’s sold-out show.
Her father even bankrolled a killer suite in a clear show of support for Layla shooting her shot with Spencer now that she’s gotten her mental health and personal life together. What the man lacks in professional boundaries, he truly makes up for in being his daughter’s wing-man.
But while everyone, including Olivia, saw this trip as an opportunity for Spencer and Layla to reconnect, Spencer was uncharacteristically dragging his feet. It took the surprise appearance of Olivia who initially bailed on coming to Vegas, a psychic intervention, and Jordan and Simone’s wedding for Spencer to finally realize why things were different between him and Layla.
In a moment that builds off of the history between Spencer and Olivia, the two bore witness to Jordan and Simone’s vows while flashing back to significant periods in each of their lives. Each vow aligned with a cherished Spelivia moment and highlighted not only how integral the two have become to one another but also how deeply they feel about each other.
It was enough to bring tears to both Spencer and Olivia’s eyes and gave Spencer the courage to speak to Olivia about his feelings. He wasted very little time going back to the crystal shop to buy Olivia the necklace she was eying as a token of his affection. Between that and his love confession, I nearly forgot how things would play out which is a testament to the All American writers.
Spelivia scenes from earlier in the season hit different now. We knew there was romantic tension between Spencer and Olivia, but now, we know it’s because things were left unresolved. Olivia ran from their feelings, and Spencer fell back into Layla as a reaction to being rejected. They’ve been trying to recreate some sense of normalcy. Trying to return to a time before Spencer realized he’s in love with Olivia, and she only had to deal with unrequited feelings and suppressed emotion.
But they can’t go back to that time. It doesn’t exist anymore. Spencer’s idea of real happiness involves Olivia, and running from that reality has only hurt the very people Olivia was trying to protect. Layla caught onto the vibe between Spelivia. More specifically, she realized she’s not the person Spencer depends on nor is she the one who knows and understands him the best.
Episode after episode has revealed just how far out of the loop Layla is on Spencer’s feelings. But, he put her in that position by not being up front. So now he has to deal with the consequences. At the end of the day, his broken heart doesn’t excuse falling back on Layla and secretly harboring feelings for Olivia.
It was a mistake to get involved with her again knowing his heart wasn’t in it especially because it has twice now been a reaction to Olivia not choosing him. No one wants to feel like a consolation prize and, while it’s doubtful that was Spencer’s intention, that’s how Layla has been treated.
Next week’s episode, “Canceled,” is our last before All American goes on hiatus. Now that Layla knows the truth we’re expecting fireworks. She’s a woman scorned by two people she loves deeply, two people she’s been pouring her heart out to about her feelings, who have kept quiet on their own. That’s an infuriating place to be in, but having everything out in the open may be the push Spencer and Olivia need to talk about what happened in Vegas.
Olivia has been avoiding the conversation every time Spencer has tried to bring it up. Her avoidance led to an extended absence from each other’s lives that the both of them hated. At the core of who Spelivia are is friendship.
They’ve put their own feelings aside more than once to preserve the bond they share. This most recent time is no different. But regardless of Olivia’s initial misgivings, the two do need to talk. Spencer deserves an explanation for why Olivia ran off, and Olivia should get to put words to how she feels about Spencer.
It’s my belief that she’s in love with him but is so used to hiding it that the idea of telling him terrifies her especially in light of this being the second time she’s gotten in the middle of Layla’s relationship. But the thing is Olivia is already in the middle and has been for awhile now. She can’t change something that already happened. The only thing she can do is work with what’s happening in the moment, and it seems like her and Spencer’s moment is coming back around.
I hope we’re in for part two of the Spelivia love confession next week. Until then, All American fans, fingers crossed.