Thursday, April 27, 2017

Empty Nests (S2E26)

Synopsis: In arguably the worst episode, the girls console an annoying neighbor who is feeling lonely after her youngest daughter leaves for college and her busy husband neglects her.

Crazy Continuity
Apparently this episode took place in the future: it aired in May of 1987 but A Nightmare on Elm Street 4 didn't come out until August of 1988! (I'm pretty sure Susan Harris got her Freddy sequels mixed up)

Let’s Get Political
Renee: “At 2 in the morning, waiting for George to come home, I called a radio talk show I gave them the solution to the crisis in the Middle East.”
Rose: “Giving the Palestinians Greenland!?”
Dorothy: “Giving the Palestinians Greenland??”
Renee: “It's a big place nobody's using it.”

Picture It
Sophia: “In Sicily we had a guy with a multiple personality. Only they didn't get along. And one personality put out a contract on the other. You shoulda seen it, he had a shoot-out with himself in the piazza. He winged a priest, a waiter, and shot down the Cinzano sign. Fortunately he was able to beat himself senseless before anyone else got hurt.”

Zbornak Zingers
Jenny: “I went there to be with my boyfriend, but when I got there I found he was practically living with somebody else. He'd replaced me.”
Rose: “With what?”
Dorothy: “A hand puppet, Rose.”

Product Placement
Dorothy: “Oh, come on. You were never rejected?”
Blanche: “Well, once. But just once.”
Jenny: “By who?”
Blanche: “Weight Watchers for being too thin.”

Sassy Sophia
Blanche: “I've been in that position more than once.”
Sophia: “You've been in every position more than once.”

Back in St. Olaf
Rose: “I used to love washing dishes. In Minnesota, the whole family'd get together and wash dishes. Even Uncle Gustaf, after the giant Swiss army knife accident, learned to dry dishes with his feet. We used to laugh and carry on and have such a happy time.”

Best of B.E.D.
Blanche: “You wanna go to college where there are green lawns and willow trees and young men in chinos and ties and professors with just a touch of gray at the temple. Wise, learned men who look up your skirt if you're sittin' in the first row. Meetings with them so they can explain Plato. And they lean over your books with you and you can smell their pipe tobacco and their maleness. And then their arm accidentally brushes against your bosoms and the room is filled with the heat of a taboo lust.”
Jenny: “Where is this school??”

Reel References
Dorothy: “Come on, a movie will cheer you up.”
Renee: “What are you seeing?”
Blanche: “Nightmare On Elm Street 4.”
Rose: “Do you have to see one, two, and three to appreciate it?”
Dorothy: “No Rose, it stands alone.”

Golden Quotes
Blanche: “I never had that empty-nest depression. I couldn't wait for my kids to get out on their own. I got depressed watching them grow older 'cause it meant I was older. They were like noisy little calendars. The minute they all entered high school, I told everybody they were my husband's from a previous marriage.”


Critique: Well what can be said about “Empty Nests” that hasn't already been said? Everyone hates it. Sure it's terrible but even the worst GG episode isn't THAT bad. Ok it's pretty bad. Anytime the girls are onscreen it's fine. Most of the writing is still pretty good, Susan Harris wrote it after all. Though she never wrote many of my favorite episodes. The episode really suffers because it spends large stretches focusing solely on Renee, her husband George, her multiple personality suffering brother Charlie, and their weird friend Oliver. There is literally nothing interesting about any of these people. It's no wonder the entire “Empty Nest” concept was rehauled. The only thing that even remained when the actual “Empty Nest” spinoff series finally aired was the set and the title. Rita Moreno, looking as bored as the audience, is an Oscar-winning actress and she gives a completely dull performance matched only by the equally dull Paul Dooley who previously showed up this season as Isaac Newton. This is such a horrible way to end such a fantastic season, the writers and producers should be embarrassed (but not as embarrassed as Liza Minnelli for being in “Arthur 2”). In fact, I can't believe you've even read this far. You deserve some Chips Ahoy! Luckily for you I've already done all of Season Three so make like Blanche and get crackin'. GRADE: D+

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