Ross agrees to help Joey move a truck of Joey’s sister’s stuff to upstate New York. After Joey reads an oil ‘n vinegar-soakedshred of lettuce as a road, they’re trapped for the night in the cab during a snowstorm. To stay warm and preserve body heat, they cuddle shirtless between jackets zipped together. Flashbacks,showing memories of their friendship shared to pass the time, slowly hint at repressed sexual tension. They wake with their faces a whisper apart. A snowplow driver finds the half-naked men and gives them a laugh track filled but otherwise awkwardly silent trip to town.
Steve finds Eddie on the driveway with a busted ankle from landing too hard on a layup. Steve bumbles carrying Eddie in, getting ice, “did I do that?,” etc. They begin remembering how helpful Steve has been towards the Winslow family, despite all the “that’s” that he did do. Eddie considers replacing Waldo as his best friend until Laura shows up, Steve makes an eyebrow wiggling pass at her, and Eddie’s reminded Steve wants to fuck his sister. A laugh track roars as Eddie is unable to chase Steve, who runs out the back door.
Step By Step
Frank, who was making repairs to the attic’s insulation, falls through the ceiling. He lands in the safety of his own bed. A box of old photographs falls with him. Carol brings them downstairs, and as the siblings and step-siblings pass through the room, they remember the silly, thirsty nature of their Aunt Penny. Frank finishes and joins the family. He asks where Brendan is but no one has seen him, cueing the laugh track.
Luke has gotten a part in the school play and is rehearsing lines in the living room. Mike comes downstairs and teases him. Luke says he’s going to be famous, and Mike says, “Yeah, how so,” leading to a series of flashbacks showing Luke’s Oscar-worthy talent. Mike, as if answering a response, says, “Yeah, well, you’d have better luck moving to Eureka, California.” The laugh track plays before the credits when Luke says, “You’re just mad everyone saw your girlfriend naked.”
Ted and some other character, while trapped in a locker room, rehash their dislike of each other but eventually bond over not having AppleTV. Is there a laugh track? They don’t know. But it laughs when suggesting a DVD release.
All In the Family
Archie and Edith have the place to themselves when the power goes out. Over a candlelit dinner, they fondly remember all the great times they’ve had in their marriage. Their daughter and son-in-law return home, and before Michael can state a greeting, Archie calls him a Meathead and blows a raspberry to what’s not only wrong with his household but his country. Gloria saying, “Then why don’t you get your own place, Daddy?” triggers the laugh track.
Aliens in the Family
2 episodes, a TGIF flashback before abducted to Saturdays. Then crickets since ‘96.
Donald Ryan‘s novel Don Bronco’s (Working Title) Shell is forthcoming this fall from Malarkey Books. He lurks around twitter @dryanswords.
This story won first place in our “I love Sitcoms” contest