Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Clinton Avenue Memoirs S5E16

Synopsis: Sophia and Dorothy travel to Brooklyn to help revive Sophia’s fading memory; meanwhile Blanche moonlights for Rose.

90s Flashback
Dorothy: “Oh, dammit. I hate watching what this is doing to her.”
Blanche: “I hate watching what it's doing to you.”
Rose: “I hate watching those FBI warnings at the beginning of video rentals.”

Crazy Continuity
Sophia: “I don't remember half these photos. I don't remember Brooklyn. I don't even remember you going off to your senior prom.”
Dorothy: “Ma, I never went to my senior prom.”
Sophia: “Actually, I did remember that, but why should I be the only one here to feel like crap?”
Here we are with more prom night continuity craziness. One time Dorothy went to the prom with her brother in her tennis whites, and another time she when to the prom with Stan and then got pregnant, and here she didn’t even go to the prom. Make up your mind, writers!

Let’s Get Political
Dorothy: “He said that Ma's memory problem could be related to a nutritional imbalance, so he put her on a special diet, and if she follows it, she'll be fine from here on out.”
Sophia: “Oh, lucky me, I can remember from now on. My whole past is gone! I could have slept with JFK and don't even know it!”
Dorothy: “Ma, I don't think so. You're not mentioned in any of the books.”
Blanche: “Well, that doesn't necessarily mean anything.”

Take Me Out to the Ballgame, Stanley
Sal: “Now I know you think Phil here's taken your place. Well, I wanna tell you something. I love you more than anything.”
Young Dorothy: “Even more than the Dodgers on five-cent beer night?
Sal: “OK, even more than that.”

That’s What She Said
Sophia: “I insist. All I need is a little more spunk!”

Shady Pines, Ma
Sophia: “Dorothy, can you drive me to the mall Friday night? They're giving free blood pressure tests, and some of the girls and I have a high-low bet.”
Dorothy: “Ma, honey, don't you remember? Friday night we're planning on having dinner at Joe's Stone Crab.”
Sophia: “Oh?”
Dorothy: “Honey, it's your wedding anniversary.”
Sophia: “Oh, yeah, right. Sounds nice.”
Dorothy: “Ma, you didn't forget, did you?”
Sophia: “Oh, forgive me, I forgot something. Maybe you should ship me back to Shady Pines.”

Product Placement
Sophia: “Sal! What the hell are you doing here?”
Sal: “Relax. I'm not really here. I'm just a Fig Newton of your imagination.”

Sassy Sophia
Sophia: “Imagine finding that carving in here! Kitchen, bedroom - I knew it was a room I was good in!”

Back in St. Olaf
Blanche: “I need the professional care of the most talented hairdresser in Miami - Robert. Oh, he's brilliant. Do you know he was the first one ever to use mousse?”
Rose: “I'd check my facts if I were you, Blanche. Mr. Ingrid of St. Olaf has been using moose ever since I can remember. Of course, it's his own professional secret which part of the moose he uses. But it'll keep your hair in place in winds up to a hundred and thirty miles an hour.”

Best of B.E.D.
Blanche: “Oh, hello, sir. I am conducting a phone survey regarding healthcare for the elderly. May I ask your age? That's not so old! And what's your general health? That's good. What would you say is your annual income? Oh, that's very good! Marital status? Oh, I am sorry. How long? Three weeks! I'd say it was time you were getting on with your life, honey.”

Sweet, Single-Digit-IQ Rose
Blanche: “Dorothy, what just happened?”
Rose: “Well, weren't you listening? Sophia came in and asked Dorothy to drive her to the mall for a blood pressure test. And then Dorothy told Sophia that they had a date to go out to dinner Friday night, and then Sophia said-”
Dorothy: “Honey, would you hand me the newspaper?”
Rose: “Oh.”
Dorothy: “No, the Metro section.”
Rose: “-that she and the girls [SMACK] Hey, don't kill the messenger.”

From Feud to Food
Sophia: “I mixed up the rooms, but I remembered. Of course. I thought the carving was in the kitchen. Sal used to hang his salamis in here.”

What Do I Look Like, a Cross-Dresser?
Sophia: “I'm going through the family album. I thought I'd pay your father a visit.”
Dorothy: “Look, here we all are!”
Sophia: “Your sweet sixteen party, right?”
Dorothy: “Right! Oh look at that beautiful chiffon dress.”
Sophia: “Yeah, your brother Phil always did like to make a splash.”

The Boob Tube
Dorothy: “I guess I've just been hoping that things would improve by themselves. You know, I never thought Ma would lose her memory. Of course, I never thought Alan Alda would get on my nerves.”

Reel References
Dorothy: “Ah, look! The Jersey shore, summer 1939.”
Sophia: “Pop sure loved playing with you kids. Why do I look so upset?”
Dorothy: “Oh, Ma, don't you remember? Pop was a big fan of Jean Harlow's back then. You hated it when he made sand breasts in front of the children.”

Golden Quotes
Rose: “How about moonlighting and making some extra money?”
Blanche: “Another job? Rose, I already work my fingers to the bone twelve hours a week at the museum: ‘Picasso on your left, snack bar downstairs.’ It's a wonder I'm not an alcoholic.”

Sophia: “Isn't it good to be back in the old neighborhood, Dorothy? Watching the kids playing stickball on the corner?”
Dorothy: “Ma, they were beating a man. That was sort of why I called the police.”
Sophia: “Ah, they were just having a good time.”

Dorothy: “Now, look, Ma, I don't want you to be disappointed if the new tenants don't let us in.”
Mr. Hernandez: “Buenos di­as.”
Sophia: “Oh, God!”

Sophia: “And that big old window I used to look out of.”
Dorothy: “Oh Ma, I remember when I was a little girl playing out in the street. I can still hear your voice. ‘Dorothy, fix your dress, the whole neighborhood can see your business.’”

Blanche: “Well, all right, just pay me under the table.”
Rose: “Oh, sure! I know that trick. Dorothy's done that to me before. I go under the table and you never show up. No way! “

Dorothy: “Ma, Mr. Hernandez has to go.”
Mr. Hernandez: “I'm meeting the wife and kids. We are going ice-skating.”
Sophia, seeing the carving: “Dorothy! Oh, my God! Can you believe it??”
Mr. Hernandez: “Hey, Puerto Ricans can ice-skate! Jeez!”

It’s important to note that while actor Sid Melton, who plays Sophia’s deceased husband Sal, makes his sixth appearance here; it is the first time he appears alongside the “present day” version of Sophia. He appears here in flashback form and in spirit form. This episode is great because even five seasons in the writers were still giving us great character development (and yet they still can’t get Dorothy’s damn prom timeline right, but I digress). I love seeing Dorothy and Sophia reminisce about their past; and they don’t go overly sentimental. The B story involving Blanche working for Rose is really just an excuse to keep those characters around. It’s fine but unrewarding. At least we get to hear Blanche say “Make it out to Hair By Robert!” The episode also features some familiar faces. The girl who plays young Dorothy was in the movie “Ladybugs” and the woman who plays younger Sophia was Gina in “Foreign Exchange”. As in “Buon giorno, I’m-a Gina!” But my question remains, if it’s nice enough to play stickball on the corner, why would the Hernandez family be going ice skating? GRADE: A-


  1. They really can't get that prom timeline right, I feel you on that one.
    I feel you about the B plot. I think they were afraid to give Dorothy and Sophia the episode entirely, and had they, it would not have hurt the episode.

  2. Dorothy didn't go to prom with Stan. When John didn't show up, she felt rejected, and that's why when Stan asked her out days later to go to the drive-in with him, she said yes, and that's where she got pregnant. It took 3 seconds. She wasn't sure they had done anything really until 9 months later when the baby came. You know that was her only proof?