Episode Title: “Here’s Lookin’ At You, Kid”
Production Code: 0322
Reviewed By: Nitzan Gilkis
One thing that bothers me every time I watch this episode, is that it fails to give any explanation whatsoever as to why Peg is the only woman in the neighborhood who doesn’t get peeped (as we can see in the first scene, she certainly isn’t the ugliest…). I’m pretty sure anyone who’s ever watched the episode expected to eventually learn who the peeper was and what his reasons were for repeatedly skipping the Bundy house, but the script seems to find these questions irrelevant and chooses to leave us in mystery. The only likely ‘suspect’ as far as we know is Bud, but he’s home at the time Marcy and Mrs. McGinty get peeped, so who is the peeper? Guess we’ll never know.
Al: Kids! Come in here. Don’t ever leave me alone with your mother again!
“I have cookies…”
Other than this (huge) plot-hole, though, “Here’s Lookin’ At You, Kid” is actually one of the more enjoyable season three episodes, with an abundance of funny moments. The best part IMO is the first scene, where the “battle on sex” between Al and Peg reaches new heights, with Al locking Peg in the basement and Peg tearing her way out of there and trying to drag Al - who is hanging on for dear life - away from the couch, shouting “I want us to have a beautiful expression of our love!”. A hilarious, classic scene that’s definitely worth re-watching. Al’s vigorous resistance in the first half makes it all-the-funnier to watch him force himself to offer to have sex with Peg in the second half to stop her whining, and to know he’s had to do it for five days in a row, no less. Ed O’Neill does a brilliant job portraying Al’s reactions to this, especially with his grimly determined “you know what you have to do, cowboy” facial expressions and his anything-but-horny tone when he says “oh Peg, seeing you sitting there by the phone… really turns me on”. BTW, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen Al using sex to shut Peg up; he also did it in “Father Lode” a season earlier, and led Steve into doing it way back in season one’s “The Poker Game”.
Marcy: Peggy, there’s something disgusting going on in the neighborhood.
Al: See, Peg? Now everybody knows!
Steve been ‘doing the Bundy’?
Steve and Marcy get a few good lines each; the best is Steve’s confesesion “I can’t go on having sex without mine!”, followed by what is probably the funniest facial expression I’ve ever seen from Garrison on the show (well, he had some great ones in “The Razor’s Edge” as well… guess it’s just always funny to see Steve horny). Marcy’s best part is, of course, plotting revenge on the peeper (“I know a toenail doesn’t seem like much, but when peeled slowly away with a pair of rusty tweezers…”) - I always love it when she lets some insanity slip through. She and Steve also share a hilarious little dialog about Marcy’s anatomy (Jimmys, Big Boys… does everything have a pet name??). Interesting to note Steve’s comment “without sex I might as well live with my mother and be happy”, indicating the deterioration of his relationship with Marcy, to the point of being based on nothing but sex. Wonder if the producers already knew Garrison was leaving, or were planning to have the Rhoades’ relationship go that way anyway.
Marcy: He saw me in all my nakedness.
Al: Did they find this guy in the bushes, all twitching from fear?
Kelly performs Thomas Jefferson’s song…
…Al and Peg couldn’t be more proud
Well, time for the usual Nitzan-disses-the-subplot paragraph… As often was the case in the early seasons, the writers here didn’t quite know how to fit the kids into the adult-themed tale and came up with some unconnected and uninspired B-story just so the two actors could get some screen time. This time it’s Bud tutoring Kelly for her exams in his own special way (ha ha, Thomas Jefferson wrote the Jeffersons’ theme song, very funny indeed), which was already done in at least two other episodes beforehand, if not more. And so once every couple of minutes Bud and Kelly pop in, Kelly says something really stupid, Al and Peg give her long looks and make some predictable sarcastic comment (the quote below is the only funny exception) and the kids leave. As you may have noticed in my previous reviews, I’ve never been a big fan of ‘Kellyisms’, and the subplot here relies on them quite heavily, so I guess it’s no surprise I didn’t like it. IMO shortening the kids’ roles and giving the Al-Peg story some more screen time would’ve made the episode even better.
Al: Now son, I know you’re having fun with your sister, her being a dullard and all. But if Kelly doesn’t get out of high-school, she’ll never leave home. Then daddy will never get his own room. If that happens, I just might run amok in alphabetical order. Do you understand, BUD?
“painkiller’s wearing off here…”
The episode, like so many others before and after it, ends with Al in casts and bandages. Loving husband that he is deep down inside, he pretends to be the peeper to cheer Peg up and unfortunately gets caught by the neighborhood’s amazon squad. Considering the sounds we hear from outside the bedroom window following Al’s fall (was that a chainsaw? a lawnmower?) it’s surprising he escapes with such relatively light injuries this time. Then again, if the show was any bit realistic, Al would’ve become a vegetable long ago. But MWC is only realistic when it chooses to be. And that’s exactly why we love this show...