Dirt Off Your Shoulder (2) is the ninth episode of Season 11 of Degrassi. It aired on July 28, 2011.


Riley resigned from maintaining a straight male charade to keep the peace within his family—they're not changing. But Zane isn't changing either, and he still can't get comfortable with the lie. As Riley faces a terrible choice—Zane or his family—he can't put off the decision any longer. In an attempt to regain control over his own life, Eli finds himself under another influence: Imogen's. Her unconventional outlook on how to get over Clare—not to mention her unwavering faith in his genius—seem to be working for him better than his meds did. But does Imogen come with side effects, too? And K.C. is starting to think his job—and flirting with Marisol—might be too much of a threat to the security he needs to provide to Jenna. But when Marisol makes a case to keep him there, and her case comes with a raise...he can't really say no, can he?

Main Plot

Eli is watching Clare in the cafeteria when Adam walks up to him. Eli gives Adam his pills because he wants to see how long he can last without them, as he feels they're killing his creativity. When Adam refuses, Eli causes a scene, attracting the attention of Imogen. After Adam leaves, she snatches Eli's pills. At the end of drama class, Fiona and Ms. Dawes ask Eli about the script and he tells them it's coming along fine. When Dawes asks him if he has someone to bounce ideas off of, Imogen awkwardly volunteers herself. Eli confirms that Imogen still has the pills with her and they walk off. She suggests flashcards and word association to get his brain going. Eli ignores this and demands his pills. She withholds them, telling him to be strong. When asked about how he feels, Eli replies that he feels panicky, sweaty, and shaky and that if he stays at Degrassi he'll need those pills. Imogen suggests that they skip. Eli complies. Eli and Imogen are in an alley, while Imogen draws a detailed picture of him. Eli, annoyed wants to go home as they have been wandering the streets for hours. Imogen ignores him and makes him draw one of her. Eli explains that writing was something he and Clare shared and now that they're broken up he's broken. Imogen asks how he is still in love with her when she hurt him so badly. Eli replies that he wants to be over her. Imogen in turn says that she can help with that. When Imogen walks out of a store dressed like Clare, she tells him that they're going to be role playing, so he can get things off his chest. Imogen manipulates Eli by saying cruel things about Clare that aren't true to get Eli to get his emotions out to write the play. Eli, having started writing, tells Clare that he can do the interview about the play with her now. At The Dot, Imogen and Eli celebrate his (supposed) getting over Clare. When Imogen reveals she knows some very personal things about Eli and Clare, he gets creeped out. She calms him down by saying Clare would want him to freak out. They prepare to pitch Fiona the concept. Once Eli shows Fiona his play, she loves it and goes to Dawes to convince her to go ahead with it. Imogen hands him his pills telling him he's conquered his demons and that what happens next is up to him. Eli goes to talk to Clare. Once he tells her about the plot (which is a warped version of the demise of their relationship), she gets upset, which progresses when he tells her he is no longer in love with her. When asked if he's taking his pills, he says no and that he has all the help he needs. Imogen walks up and Eli walks away with her calling her "Imo," and, as they are walking away, he discards his pills and throws away the vial.

Sub Plot

Riley goes to confront Zane about what happened with the text. Zane doesn't believe Riley when he is told about the date being a setup. When Riley explains that because things are good with his family right now and that he doesn't want to shake things up again, Zane retorts that he feels like a dirty secret. Riley invites Zane to his birthday dinner, but only as a friend. At the dinner (with Riley and his family, Zane, Athena, and her mother present), Riley's father gives him an expensive watch telling him he only turns 18 once. When Riley's father makes a comment about Riley and Athena having kids, she mentions his (nonexistent) girlfriend. Zane, of course, is displeased by this. Riley talks about his girlfriend, while actually talking about Zane, telling him to relax. Zane excuses himself from dinner. Riley chases him and Zane tells him he can't do this and that there isn't anything fun about it. Anya convinces Riley that it's time to talk to his family about his being gay, so as not to lose Zane. Riley invites Zane to The Dot telling him he's made a big decision. When Zane arrives, Riley breaks up with him, because he can't keep putting him through these things, but he isn't ready to come out yet.

Third Plot

Marisol goes to K.C. at his locker and tells him about Hawaiian Night at Little Miss Steaks. Instead of saying "everyone gets lei's" she says "everyone gets laid," causing an awkward moment. After leaving, Dave shows interest in her to K.C. When K.C. gets home, Jenna hands him Tyson and shows him a baby monitor on sale for $200. K.C. then tells her that he needs to quit because he slept through his classes all day and that work is too much for him to handle. Jenna encourages him by saying "Do what you need to do. You're my hero either way." She then looks longingly at the baby monitor. At the diner, K.C. tells Marisol he has to quit, and to stop this she gets him promoted to busboy. When he tells Jenna, she's excited until she finds out that Marisol is the one who helped him. Knowing that she used to be flirty just like Marisol, she gets upset. K.C. calms her down by saying that Marisol just wanted to help. Back at the diner K.C. thanks Marisol for the job and they flirt, leading to a hug that ends up lasting longer than it should. The next day at school, he gives her a new MP3 player that he bought just for her. To thank him, she kisses him on the cheek and leaves.

  • The title of this episode is named after the song "Dirt Off Your Shoulder" by Jay-Z.
  • Stefan Brogren has said this episode "will make the fangirls go crazy."
  • Eli goes off his anti-anxiety pills so that he can regain his creativity.
  • This episode marks the only appearance of Riley's father Mr. Stavros.
  • This episode marks the second appearance of Athena.
  • There was a brief mention of Fitz and his incident involving Eli at Vegas Night.
  • In this episode, Marisol, who has taken an interest in K.C., is referred to as "Miss Flirty Flirt" by a jealous Jenna. Coincidentally, this is also what Clare called Jenna in Heart Like Mine (1), shortly before K.C. broke up with Clare in order to pursue Jenna.
  • It is somewhat implied that Imogen was stalking Eli after she reveals all of her knowledge of Clare and Eli's relationship.

  • Clare: "You need help." Eli: "I have all the help I need." Imogen: "At your service, Eli Goldsworthy."
  • Clare: "So what's the play about?" Eli: "A tale of a high school romance gone wrong. Sound familiar?"
  • Eli: "Have you been stalking me?" Imogen: "...No."
  • Imogen: "Don't let the crazy get the best of you. That's what Clare wants."
  • Eli (to Adam): "Are you gonna help me or not?!"
  • Imogen (to Eli about Clare): "How can you still be in love with someone who hurt you so much?"
  • Clare: "Have you been taking your medication? "Eli: "No!"
  • Eli: "I don't love you anymore, Clare. I'm free!"
  • Eli: "Come on, Imo. We've got a play to write."
  • Zane: "You've met my family. You're my world Riley."
  • Imogen: "JUST CALL ME bounce things off of...ideas?"
  • Anya: "Well, honesty is usually the best policy. That's what they tell me anyway." Riley: "Since when?" Anya: "Good point!"
  • Zane (to Riley): "So this... this is how it ends?"

  • "Rich Doors" by NewVillager - Heard when Eli watches Clare from a distance.
  • "No Power" by Absofacto - Heard when Imogen convinces Eli that Clare never loved him.
  • "Hold Me In Your Arms" by Zerbin - Heard when Riley breaks up with Zane.
  • "Honey Crystal Cave" by Minotaur - Heard when Eli throws his pills out.