A.K.A. "saturday night"
Tom MooreAir Dates
11/3/87, 3/29/88, 3/14/89Guest Stars
Sound wavs from this episode
Lucy Webb and Tim Stack as the Irritants (restaurant waitrons, valet parking attendants, and movie ticket sellers); Earl Boen as Dr. Nestle; Ernie Brown as Security Guard; Jillian Gaines as Pretty Girl (grad student); Kevin Pollak as Bookstore Guy (Walter); Margaret Silbar as Bookstore Cashier; Robert Wilson as Boyfriend; Paul Sand as the voice of Jim/Rex; Michael Feinstein as himselfSynopsis
Michael, Hope, Gary, and Melissa are foiled in their efforts to have nice, normal dates on Saturday night.Summary
Melissa is busy taking photos of Janey (trying to get a baby food gig) when Hope begins plying her for girl talk and the new guy she's going to see. His name is Jim, but Melissa calls him "Rex" since they met because the pharmacist mixed up their perscriptions. After a phone call to correct this, Melissa shares that Jim/Rex asked her to go to New York since he has house seats for Les Mis.Notes
Later, talking to herself in the mirror as she brushes her hair, Hope chastises herself for being jealous of "poor Melissa" when she has it all--a husband, baby, and absent parents. She fantasizes about having a romantic dance sequence iwth Michael in formal wear as Michael Feinstein sings, then abruptly snaps back to reality as the toilet flushes and Michael asks where the toilet paper is.
Michael, Elliot, and Gary are at the hardware store, where Michael is complaiing thta he doesn't understand what he did to upset Hope by asking such a simple question. Gary wanders off and hits on a blond English grad student, making up Emily Dickinson parodies as he tags along and they set a time for him to come over. Elliot tries to help Michael see that Hope wants a date, a real Saturday night out, and there's another daydream sequence of Hope declaring all this to him.
Melissa tries to explain to her Mom while she's not in more frequent touch while working out and frantically getting ready for her date. Jim/Rex calls and asks to make sure that she'll bring the prescription along with her. For some bizarre reason, Melissa can't get cash from an ATM and Michael has to take her to the office where he opens up petty cash and loans her forty bucks.He points out that the green dress she's wearing is one that she wore on some special night with Gary, and Melissa humorously reminds him that she and Gary are through forever.
Michael feels guilty now and calls Hope to ask her on a date, bantering as if they've never dated and only know each other from around school. At Jim/Rex's building, she calls up but he won't let her in, cancels completely, and asks for her to drop off the pills with the security guard. Back at her loft, Melissa has ice cream and Ruffles chips for a pity fest. Over at the grad school's place, Gary works on the plumbing under her sink, and soaks himself.
Hope and Michael arrive at a very nice restaurant (Casa Bella), deal with the door waitrons, and are informed that they don't actually have reservations. Michael tries to reason his way in, but they finally leave and then can't find the valet parking ticket.
Just as Gary fixes the faucet, the grad student's hunky boyfriend arrives and he realizes his prospects are doomed. Melissa in teh mean time has gone to the book store and is latched on to by a most obnoxious person (Walter) in line while she daydreams that Dr. Nestle leans over her shoulder, advising her on what to do. Just as she agrees to go get coffee with him, he gets to the register and it seems he's purchasing books like Sex Lives of the Nazis. Just then, Gary arrives, seizes her, and they dash off together.
At the movie theatre, Hope and Michael try to see numerous films, all of which are sold out, but finally get in to see something unnamed, jsut to be able to.Gary drives Melissa home as they despair over their lousy luck that night and just as she walks to the door, she asks if he wants to come in for coffee and he eagerly accepts. Back at the theatre, Hope and Michael have just seen a 4 hour, 20 minute Holocaust documentary [called Swastika] and then the car refuses to start because he left the lights on.
At Melissa's, she and Gary are drinking wine while they sit out on the roof, and swear new resolutions about their dating lives. Over pizza, they talk about their relationship a bit and Melissa starts rubbing Gary's neck to relieve the crick in his neck from all that plumbing and they clown around a little, ending up a bit flirtatious. Melissa catches on to his intentions and Gary fumbles about, indicating he'd possibly been thinking they were moving towards something before they break off and he leaves, but on good terms, each a little startled what they'd nearly fallen into
The auto club has shown up and charges Michael an insane amoutn since Hope let the membership expire and they drive off in a huff. Gary calls Melissa from the phone booth outside her loft, getting her answering machine, confessing that he doesn't want to be alone. [Missing scene of Melissa's nightmare fantasy of the consequences] After sex, Gary has a nightmare of lying in bed with Melissa, dressed in full wedding regalia, and the bed is surrounded with bars he can't escape. Tossing nervously, he tumbles out of bed, awakes them both, and they both admit to nightmares. As Melissa goes to kiss him, he turns to see what time it is, and they start realizing how awkard they are in bed together again, hearing bells chiming from their nightmares. As Gary bolts off to "move his car" so he won't get a ticket, Melissa suggests they pick up bagels and the paper so they can spend a nice Sunday brunch together. He nervously insists he'll get all of it himself while she starts the coffee, then dashes off.
At the Steadman home, all is quiet on Sunday morning as they try to recover from the previous night and Hope finally articulate that what she wants is just Michael and Janey, their life together, and not some ideal. Hope then resets the clock to make it Saturday night and they go back to bed (but not to sleep).
At the loft, Melissa is sitting alone at a perfectly set breakfast table, plates waiting and empty, as she rhythmically taps a knife against the rim...waiting for Gary.
Finally having gotten their Saturday night, Gary arrives to bring reality back to the Steadmans. He's bearing bagels, papers, and is a great bundle of cheer. Michael asks about the plumbing girl and Gary lets him think that was who he spent the night with. Melissa innocently arrives in the midst of breakfast preparations and is stunned at the sight of Gary with the bagels he was supposed to bring to her. Hope packs Michael and Gary off to change Janey while she snags Melissa to talk it out.
Michael tentatively finds out what happened, but doesn't come down too hard on Gary. Hope is a little clearer with Melissa that Gary was wrong, explaining that there's no future with Gary, which Melissa knows all too well. Gary returns finally and submits himself to Melissa's ire. She's righteously angry with him and with herself as well. Gary rambles some, but Melissa draws the bottom line that it won't happen again, they somehow segue into bagels and it's all over very quickly with tears and laughter.
"I'm thinking the original episode contained a sort of strange dream sequence (intended, I think, to be both humorous and really awful) with Melissa and Gary in a fairy-tale-esque bed with a giant chiming clock over it...dream sequence showed them under the covers, seemingly naked. At least, I think this was in this episode. If my memory is right, the sequence took place after they'd "done the deed," and it heavily emphasized Melissa's ambivalance about Gary (the viewer got the feeling that what they'd just done was a VERY bad thing) and yet also focused on the force of her biological clock."
"I met a girl in a hardware store once. She turned out to have a large female roommate named Chuck." --ElliotAnalysis
"If you were any more in touch with your feelings, Melissa, you'd be molesting them." --Gary
Melissa's vow for Gary: "I swear by the full moon no more picking up girls in hardware stores, no matter how good their bodies are."
Gary's vow for Melissa: "I swear that if I'm alone I will say that it's OK to be alone and until I love me, no one else can love me. And I swear that I will not idealize married people like Hope and Michael who have their own problems even though I don't know what they are and want to kill them when they complain, especially Hope..."
Melissa's voice is pitched a little higher in this episode for some reason, as if projecting hopefulness. I really noticed it in the segment where she was talking to Jim, the pharmacy date, on the phone. Kick Gary's lousy butt for doing such a lousy thing!! I can't believe Melissa keeps taking this guy back. She swears quite vehemantly that he'll never do it to her again, but just a short year later, they're back in the same boat. I now I'm unsympathetic at times, but Gary really, really reminds me of someone I was involved with for nearly a decade (they even kinda look alike), and this rhetoric is very familiar. Makes me uncomfy. To think that someone could treat someoen he claims to love so callously, then also claim that if they hadn't run into each other so soon they would've acted like nothing had happened and never offers any kind of apology is just...subhuman. Hope and Michael however came across nicely as the couple caught in the middle.
Sound wavs from this episode - All sound names starting with "05"
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