This episode followed the same pattern as almost all this season's previous episodes (big fights, big hugs), but thankfully the Rebecca-Justin relationship was dialed down. And double thankfully, we also got to see more of the Scotty-Justin relationship and a wonderful guest spot from Dave Foley. But not without a Sarah-Kitty squabble, a classic Walker phone call (this I loved!) and a Nora meltdown at the dinner table. So what caused the brouhaha this week? Let's find out!
As the episode kicks off, we learn that not only has Scotty recently been getting press for his work at the restaurant, but that he has also been promoted to Head Chef. Kevin, delighted at the news, quickly informs Sarah that the dinner party she is throwing in his honor will be a promotion celebration. While Kevin and Scotty think about the future in a larger place, however, Kevin realizes just what he's given up to become a government employee: money. Seventy-five percent of his former salary to be exact. Ouch.
Kevin, however, talks Nora, who is preparing to bid on houses for her center, into letting him tag along to the auction as her "financial advisor." Once there, he pesters her with questions about how well she checked into the two properties she has in mind and advises her not to be hasty ("Read the room," he says), so much so that the first house is sold right in front of her without Nora's paddle ever making it into the air. No biggie, there's still one left. That is, until Kevin pulls the same stunt again, only this time, it's talk of him buying a house that is the distraction. And before either of them know it, Kevin's paddle goes up, and he is the new owner of Nora's mansion. You could see the blood start boiling almost immediately.
Meanwhile, Robert discovers that Kitty isn't sleeping, choosing to spend her nights up late watching programs about underprivileged families and single moms, to whom she begins sending money to support. When Robert brings this problem to Kevin (who is on speakerphone with Sarah, and eventually Tommy, Nora and Justin), they all realize that they need to keep Kitty busy. (Somewhere in there was a lot of talk about high school, a dance of humiliation and a spandex debacle.) Sarah says she'll let Kitty look over her Green-a-topia proposal to keep her mind occupied and everyone is happy...for the time being.
Justin, after being reminded by Nora that he is just as boring as his Uncle Saul who seems to be bored in his retirement, cooks up a plan to set Saul up with an older gay man in his Narcotics Anonymous group. Justin invites Paul (Foley) to meet Saul (loved Rebecca's line about Dr. Seuss, in reference to their rhyming names) at Sarah's party for Scotty. Paul, however, shows up two hours early thanks to his inability to drive (or time the bus route) and annoys Sarah, Tommy and anyone who will listen as he tells his ridiculous stories. Sarah, meanwhile, can't escape to the kitchen because Kitty is there, ripping apart of her proposal from cover to cover. (Among her complaints are the mission statement, Sarah's social networking component to the site and her "hokey" slogan, "The Greener Side of Life."
After Paul has basically annoyed everyone in the house, Saul arrives, only to be ambushed by this complete stranger. Saul has some tense words for Justin, but all must be put on hold for dinner. Just after Sarah's toast to Scotty, Kevin announces that he bought Scotty and himself a house. Scotty, however, leaves the party upset, and Nora comes to his defense, claiming that Scotty (like herself) feels bulldozed by Kevin, who "doesn't believe anyone can succeed without (his) help." She compares Kevin to his father, who basically handed Nora her life without waiting for her input, and then accused all of the Walker boys for "barging in" to all situations without understanding that they can't fix everything — or usually, anything (I think Justin was probably slumping in his seat right about now...) Nora then leaves the party as well.
Sarah finally confronts Kitty for "disemboweling" her proposal, and when Kitty tries to defend her opinions, Sarah spills the fact that the family was basically giving her busywork to keep her occupied. Kitty isn't thrilled by this notion, but goes on to explain that even though that was there intention, they still failed, because she was thinking of her mistakes the entire time she was working on the proposal. She owns up to driving the birth mother away and that she will have to find a way to deal with it (one that doesn't involve editing Sarah's work). The two hug it out, and the world is back on its way to being right. The same is true for Saul and Justin, who discuss Justin's matchmaker blunder. Though "touched by the gesture," Saul admits that he is seeing someone, but swears him to secrecy.
Kevin returns home to angry Scotty, who accuses Kevin of buying the house simply to steal the spotlight at Scotty's party. He says this because he believes Kevin is competing with him and is being threatened that Scotty is now becoming Kevin's equal. Kevin is upset by the accusations, but can't really defend them, except to say he has supported him through everything, which Scotty answers was mostly during Scotty's tough times. Kevin explains his paycut and that why he really bought the house was to make Scotty happy. Scotty tells Kevin he wants them to buy the house together someday, but he's in no rush, and wants to save money. Eventually, they, too hug it out when Kevin takes Scotty to the bank to open a joint checking account.
This of course, was only followed by Kevin "selling" the mansion he purchased to Nora, with his apologies. He recognizes how he acted like his father and says he doesn't want to be that person. While Nora says she stands by the things she said (just not the way she said them), the two are "OK" and able to put that squabble behind them. And Kitty (watching the news which edited in Barack Obama's winning the presidency) shows signs of improvement to Robert, who explains that they will get their baby when the time is right. And, everyone's happy, for at least another two weeks until the next episode!
That's right, next week the show will be pre-empted because of the American Music Awards, but in two weeks, Trisha the birthmother is back, perhaps reconsidering her plans to take the baby away from Kitty. Also back is Steven Weber's Graham who will be staking money in Sarah's company, and his lips on hers.
The episode, though as I noted still seemed formulaic, at least got away from the stories we've been beat over the head with and uncovered some new ground. I hope the show continues to follow this path, or things might get yawn-worthy really soon. What did you think of the episode? Were you happy to see less of Rebecca and Justin and more of Scotty and Kevin? What did you think of Nora's blowup? How great was Dave Foley? Share your thoughts below and check back in two weeks for more!
This episode followed the same pattern as almost all this season's previous episodes (big fights, big hugs), but thankfully the Rebecca-Justin relationship was dialed down. And double thankfully, we also got to see more of the Scotty-Justin relationship and a wonderful guest spot from Dave Foley. But not without a Sarah-Kitty squabble, a classic Walker phone call (this I loved!) and a Nora meltdown at the dinner table. So what caused the brouhaha this week? Let's find out!<