YOU GOTTA KNOW WHEN TO HOLD 'EM (PART ONE)
Al Bundy...................Ed O'Neill
Peggy Bundy................Katey Sagal
Marcy Rhoades..............Amanda Bearse
Kelly Bundy................Christina Applegate
Bud Bundy..................David Faustino
Buck.......................Buck the Dog
Pizza Boy..................Michael Stoyanov
Peggy is lying on the couch, remote in hand, watching TV.
TV [V.O.] Today on "Becky": men - scum or slime?
Peggy changes the channel with distaste.
TV [V.O.] Today on "Lorraine": men - couldn't you just puke?
Peggy changes the channel impatiently.
TV [V.O.] Today on "Sharon": men - upright dogs with paychecks.
Peggy rolls her eyes and changes the channel.
PEGGY That's what I hate about this time of year. Nothing on but reruns.
Al comes in.
PEGGY Oh, hi, honey.
Al takes his jacket off and hangs it. Peggy changes the channel several more times, then puts
the remote control down and cries out in pain.
AL What is it, Peg? Couch sores?
PEGGY No, it's 'TV thumb'.
Peggy holds up her thumb for Al to see.
PEGGY But, I'm a housewife. Goes with the territory. So, how was your day?
AL Peg, it was the worst day -
PEGGY [cutting Al off] That's nice, dear. I want a vacation. I need to do something different.
AL No problem. Next week, when you're watching TV, try watching with your mouth closed.
PEGGY I'm serious, Al. They always give you a vacation. Remember last April?
Al gets a beer from the refrigerator.
AL That was my hernia operation, Peg.
PEGGY And then what about Christmas day? You remember? You didn't have to go in until two.
AL Yeah, what a day. Between stepping over your eggnog body and thawing out my underwear
you so thoughtfully left on the clothesline outside, I did have about five seconds of
fun. It was watching all those stars when I stepped on the shovel Bud left buried in
Al sits down next to Peggy.
PEGGY Why is it that whenever I want something, all you can talk about is yourself? It's
always "my back, my hernia, my 'roids". Don't you see the rut our lives have become? I
need a vacation.
AL Peg, if you wanna visit someplace new, try the kitchen. And while you're out there,
don't forget to take a picture by the refrigerator. You know, "Old Empty".
Marcy comes in, holding a note.
MARCY God, I hate men.
AL I thought you were man's best friend.
Marcy stares at Al hatefully.
AL Oh, that's a dog, not a chicken. Sorry, Marcy.
MARCY Oh, shut up, you hamhock.
Marcy closes the door and sits down on Peggy's other side.
MARCY Peggy, read this note from Steve. It was waiting on my pillow when I came home from work.
PEGGy [reading out loud] "Dear Marcy - "
Marcy snatches the note from Peggy's hand.
MARCY "Dear Marcy" my sweet patootie. The geek is leaving me.
PEGGY Oh, he doesn't mean that. He loves you.
MARCY I guess you're right. He probably meant to say that when he wrote this: [reading note
out loud] "Frankly, I'm sick of you. You disgust me. I had a full head of hair when I
met you, and I'm sure my nose grew during our marriage". He says he's going to Yosemite
to be a park ranger. He has rejected materialism and all the evils brought about by the
quest for money. Oh, and he's suing me for alimony.
Al points at Marcy and laughs. Peggy elbows him.
PEGGY Now, be strong, Marce. You don't need a man. I mean, what are they good for? They sit
there like a lump, they pick, they burp, they let one fly, and then they smile like they
just won the Nobel prize.
Al picks his ear and shows his finger to Peggy. She pushes his hand away in disgust.
PEGGY And then once a month they roll over on you on their way to the bathroom, and they call
that lovin'. Ha! [to Al, who is looking down] Not that you're not the best, baby. [to
Marcy] You should feel lucky Steve left you. This is the dawn of a new age for you, Marce.
MARCY [revitalized] You know, Peggy, you're right. I can do better than Steve. I have my
MARCY I have my youth.
MARCY I've got my looks.
Al and Peggy say nothing.
MARCY Thank God I have you for a support group. Well, it's Steve's loss. If he can't handle
a strong, intelligent woman, then tough noogies on him.
Al and Peggy lead Marcy to the door.
PEGGY That's right, Marce.
AL He'll come crawling back to you.
PEGGY He will. I think this is just gonna blow over and you're gonna be just fine.
AL Go ahead. Just go home.
MARCY Right! I'm gonna go home and cut the crotches out of all of his pants. And drag his
ties through dog poo. As far as I'm concerned, it's just one less egg to fry.
Peggy closes the door. The doorbell rings almost instantly. Al opens the door.
MARCY [breaking down] I don't wanna be alone. I'm afraid and weak and helpless.
Marcy starts sobbing on Al's shoulder.
AL There, there. There, there, now. [to Peggy] Peel her off me, will you?
Peggy pulls Marcy away from Al.
PEGGY Now, Marcy. It's gonna be all right. You can just stay here with us.
Behind Marcy's back, Al mouths "no!" repeatedly.
MARCY I won't be in the way?
PEGGY Oh, of course not.
Behind Marcy's back, Al tries to hang himself with his tie.
MARCY Oh, you're good people. And good friends.
Marcy turns to Al. He straightens up and forces a smile.
PEGGY Marcy, you're more like family. Al, brush the fleas off Buck's blanket. We have a guest.
Kelly is lying on the couch, reading a comic strip.
KELLY [reading out loud slowly] "Gee, Garfield, are those leftovers?"
Kelly laughs. Bud comes in.
BUD Hi, Kelly. I see your butt's moving. You must be reading.
KELLY Gee, Bud. You look a little bit pale. It must be your face trying to peek out from behind
Kelly sits up.
KELLY Oh! Big news in the neighborhood. Mr. Rhoades dropped Mrs. Rhoades like an old shoe.
BUd sits down next to Kelly.
BUD No kidding?
KELLY Yep. He left her to go be a ranger in that park. You know, the one where Yogi Bear lives.
BUD Jellystone National Park?
KELLY No, the other one. Yosemite. [pronounced Yo-zeh-might]
BUD Man. How do you leave a babe like that?
Kelly smiles deviously.
KELLY You know, Bud, this could be your big chance.
BUD What do you mean?
KELLY Well, Mrs. Rhoades is staying with us tonight. She's manless. And you must have seen
how she looks at you.
BUD Well, sure. [beat] How?
KELLY Bud, don't be a cow pie your whole life. She's hot for you. She's reaching her sexual
peak, you're reaching your sexual peak... Sad as that may be... I mean, this could be
your big chance. And what woman wouldn't want a virgin?
BUD Yeah! [catches himself] I'll - I'll lie to her about that part, but, uh... When do you
think I should make my move?
Kelly pats Bud's shoulder.
KELLY You'll know when the time is right.
BUD Oh man! Gonna get me an old woman!
Bud runs upstairs. Kelly lies back down.
KELLY What an idiot. [reading comic strip out loud] "Odie, did you eat my lasagne?" [pronounced
Kelly laughs. Marcy comes in holding a blanket and a pillow.
KELLY Hi, Mrs. Rhoades.
MARCY I guess you heard the news.
KELLY Oh, you mean about how Mr. Rhoades used and left you like you were the handwipe in
the men's room at the bus station?
Marcy clears her throat.
MARCY Yes. That news. [under her breath] Strawhead.
Kelly sits up. Marcy sits down next to her.
KELLY Mrs. Rhoades, let me help you out. See, you're a nerd-girl.
Marcy gives Kelly a look.
KELLY And nerd-girls get dumped. It's as inevitable as death in Texas. So what you've gotta
do is get yourself a new guy.
MARCY No more men for me. The next man that as much lays a finger on me, I'll slap him silly.
Kelly smiles widely.
KELLY Excuse me.
Kelly runs halfway up the stairs, then stops.
KELLY What are you gonna do if a man touches you?
MARCY Slap them silly.
Kelly jumps up and down excitedly and runs upstairs. Marcy lays out her blanket and sits on the
couch, examining her wedding ring.
KELLY [O.S., hushed] She's primed and ready. Go.
Bud comes down the stairs, wearing a hat and a tie and with a coat slung over his shoulder.
BUD Coo coo ca choo, Mrs. Robinson.
Bud tosses his hat on the floor and his coat on the couch.
MARCY Oh, hi, Bud. My, you look nice.
BUD [coolly] So do I.
Bud sits down next to Marcy.
BUD Listen, uh... I know you're hurtin', babe. I just wanted to say if you need a friend,
or a shoulder to lean on, or a knee to bounce on, just dial 'A' for 'all night long'.
MARCY Why, thank you, Bud. I appreciate that.
Unnoticed by Marcy, Bud slings his tie over his shoulder and starts unbuttoning his shirt.
MARCY Actually, I really do need someone to talk to. Steve and I have been together for so
BUD I understand.
MARCY How could I have been so blind?
BUD Look, uh... Let's cut through the fancy talk. We both know what we want here.
Bud pins Marcy down to the couch and tries to kiss her. The camera cuts to Kelly, who is
watching from the stairs, looking pleased. We hear a few screams, followed by a slap. The
camera cuts back to the couch. Marcy is sitting up again, and Bud's legs can be seen twitching
behind the couch.
MARCY And if you ever touch me again, I will slap you so hard even your name will be swollen.
Marcy pulls Bud up by his tie.
MARCY Got me?
BUD [shrilly] Uh-huh.
Marcy lets go of Bud and goes to the kitchen. Bud crawls up the stairs to Kelly.
BUD What did I do wrong?
KELLY Nothing! Don't you know anything about women?
BUD Well, no.
KELLY Well, I do. Her fist was saying "no, no", but there was "yes, yes" in her eyes.
Bud cheers up.
KELLY [nodding] Sure. Listen, next time she bends over, you just take -
The rest of Kelly's sentence is whispered in Bud's ear and inaudible to us. Peggy comes
down the stairs holding a pillow and walks over to Marcy.
PEGGY Hi, Marcy. Listen. I want you to be comfortable, so I brought you this pillow.
Marcy takes the pillow from Peggy.
MARCY It's nice and soft.
PEGGY Oh, yeah. It has to be. Al uses it to sit on when his 'roids flare up.
Marcy throws the pillow in disgust. She and Peggy sit at the kitchen table.
PEGGY So, how you doing?
MARCY Oh, Peggy. I feel so alone, so miserable. How am I gonna make it? What am I gonna do?
PEGGY Be happy. Forget that your husband left you. Pretend he died. You can't tell me you've
never fantasized about that.
Marcy looks away.
PEGGY Come on, Marcy. We all have.
Marcy gives in, smiles and nods.
PEGGY See? Now what you've got to do is start thinking about yourself. Be selfish. I know:
take us on a vacation. That'll show that damn Al. I - I mean Steve.
MARCY Vacation? God, I wish I could. But where would I get the money?
PEGGY Gee, that's a tough one when you don't have kids to steal from. I know! Sell something
MARCY He took everything except his stereo, and he wants me to crate it and ship it to him.
I guess you can't be a real park ranger without the theme from "Brigadoon" blasting
on your stereo.
PEGGY Sell it. I tell you what: would it make you feel better if I sold something of Al's and
came with you?
MARCY Oh Peggy, would you?
AL [O.S.] Hey Peg, come pop this thing under my arm!
PEGGY Well, let's go first thing in the morning. Al's a tiger after he's been popped.
Bud and Kelly are sitting at the kitchen table.
BUD I don't know, Kel. I did everything you said. I goosed her. I blew on her ear. I even
made that sexy sound with my armpit. Think she's frigid?
KELLY You know, Bud, it's time to step things up. You've gotta show her that you're for real.
Do something that screams romance: buy a single rose, hold it in between your teeth and
wait for her in her bed.
Bud eagerly writes this down in a notepad.
KELLY I know! Wear your "Ghostbusters" jammies. But don't tuck them in.
Al comes in and grunts a greeting at Bud and Kelly. They grunt back. Al sits on the couch,
props his feet up on the coffee table, and presses a button on the TV remote control. Nothing
happens. He presses several times more with no results.
AL What the hell is wrong with this remote control?
BUD Well, Dad, I'm no electrician, but I'd say the trouble is the TV's gone.
A distressed Al walks over to where the TV used to stand, feels the air and grabs his head.
KELLY Oh, and by the way, Dad, so is Mom.
AL Wait a second. Let's not gloss over this TV thing. Where the hell is it?
Peggy and Marcy are standing at the entrance to a casino.
PEGGY [excitedly] Las Vegas! Oh, the lights, the money, the men. I'm as giddy as a widow.
MARCY Well, let's just check in. After a nice bubble bath and a good night's sleep we'll
start bright and early. I heard they've got a really neat dam not far from here. Oh,
it's gonna be so much -
Marcy notices that Peggy is no longer standing beside her.
We see Peggy standing by a slot machine.
PEGGY Come on, baby. Mama needs a new pair of men.
Peggy pulls the lever as Marcy approaches her. We hear change dropping.
PEGGY I won! I won!
Peggy takes the coins and shows them to Marcy.
PEGGY Look: seventy-five cents from one quarter. How does this place stay in business?
MARCY Let me play. Let me play.
Peggy and Marcy hear cheers coming from a large crowd by a gambling table.
PEGGY What are we messing with quarters for? The real money's over there. Come on, Marcy.
Peggy starts off. Marcy stops her.
MARCY Maybe we should take it slow.
PEGGY Not when we're on a streak. We just got here and we're almost up a buck. We're hot.
Come on. Grab the bags.
Peggy pushes her way to the gambling table.
PEGGY 'Scuse me. 'Scuse me. Make way. Make way. 'Scuse me. Make way. Make way. [to a man
standing by the gambling table] Don't you recognize a lady when you see one?
Peggy sticks her cigarette in the man's drink. He walks off. Now Peggy is standing next to
two men in toupees. Peggy looks at them and laughs.
PEGGY [to Marcy] God, what did they have, a toupee sale here?
The two men walk off offended.
PEGGY [to dealer] I would like 20 dollars' worth of chips, and a Nubian god to carry home my
MARCY [to gambler standing next to her] I'm Marcy. I hate men. But if you get me drunk, I'm
The cigar in the gambler's mouth drops.
DEALER New shooter coming out.
PEGGY Okay. Give me room. Give me room. [to handsome guy standing next to her] Oh, not you.
You stay close. Let's go.
Peggy starts doing a weird dance with the dice.
MAN Hey, lady. Roll 'em or buy 'em.
PEGGY I'll buy you when we're done here.
MARCY Then we'll take you upstairs and use you. Then we'll hurt your feelings just like mine
were hurt. We'll see who the real park ranger is! [to Peggy, who is waiting impatiently]
You may roll now.
PEGGY Thank you. Come on, baby. Give me a seven or send me to heaven.
Peggy throws the dice.
MARCY Did we win?
PEGGY Of course we won. You know what they say. Bad marriage, good luck.
DEALER Place your bets.
PEGGY Okay. Don't give me a two 'cause my husband sells shoes.
Peggy rolls the dice.
MARCY [excitedly] We won again! We won again! How does this place stay in business?
PEGGY Oh, I don't know, Marce, but grease up the men and shoot the women, 'cause I'm
Peggy and Marcy are sitting on their suitcases at the entrance to the casino, looking glum.
MARCY Well, what are we gonna do now? We lost all our money in eight minutes, we lost our
plane tickets home and we can't even afford a room.
PEGGY Yeah, but we had fun, didn't we?
MARCY [bitterly] Yeah, yeah, right. Well, I guess I'll go fluff up a cactus and sleep in the
desert. You know what they say: the early bird catches the gila monster.
PEGGY Boy. You lose your husband and your life savings... Doesn't take much to bring you down,
does it? [laughs] You know, I just know if I had a bigger stake I could break this place.
There's just gotta be a way to get more money.
Peggy notices a sign that reads: "NEED MONEY? ALL CREDIT CARDS WELCOME". She smiles at Marcy.
We see a shot of the Bundy house at night, followed by Al talking on the phone by the counter.
AL [on phone] Hello, sergeant? This is Al Bundy again. [on the verge of tears] Listen,
I'm really starting to get worried now. [composes himself] I'm sorry, it's getting hard
for me to talk. I'm gonna calm down. [listens] The description? Okay: nineteen inch
diagonal, has a maple... maple console, and it's got notches in it from where the -
where the kids grew.
Al puts his arm around Bud, who is standing beside him.
BUD Dad, what about Mom?
AL Oh, yeah. My wife's missing too. [listens] What? A description? I don't know. Listen.
You guys are awful busy. Why don't you find the TV first and then we'll worry about the
wife. [listens] Yeah. Now, listen. Let me know if you hear anything, huh? [listens]
Al hangs up, sits on the couch between Kelly and Bud and fondles the remote control.
AL [to the remote] Why didn't I let you know how I felt about you when I had the chance?
KELLY Gee, Dad. We've never seen you touched like this before.
AL Well, it's just that I loved that TV so much.
BUD We all did, Dad.
Bud puts his arm around Al's shoulder and Kelly pats his knee. The doorbell rings.
AL Who is it?
P BOY [O.S.] Pizza boy.
Al gets up and opens the door to the pizza boy. Kelly takes the pizza from him.
P BOY Here. Twelve dollars, please.
Al holds up his credit card. The pizza boy chuckles.
P BOY No, Mr. Bundy, I'm gonna need cash. Your credit card was rejected.
AL What? That's impossible. I just paid it off.
P BOY Look, Bundy. Now, I held up my part of the deal. I side-swiped a hearse to get you this
pizza in twenty-two minutes. Now, fork over the twelve bucks.
AL I don't have that kind of money.
The pizza boy walks inside, takes the pizza, including the slices Bud and Kelly have begun
eating, and leaves.
AL Well, wait a second. I'll take care of this. I know my credit's good.
Al crosses to the phone and dials.
AL [on phone] Hello. Al Bundy here. [listens] Yes, "No-Tip Bundy". Now, look. It seems you
people made a little mistake. Now, I ordered a pizza and it seems my credit card was -
what? [listens] No, I did not charge five-thousand dollars in the last ten minutes.
[listens] I see. And just exactly where did my wife spend this alleged five grand?
[listens] Thank you very much.
Al hangs up and faces Bud and Kelly.
AL Kids, get a change of clothes and a baseball bat, 'cause we're going to Vegas!
Bud and Kelly look at each other.
Caption: "To be continued...".
Transcribed by Nitzan Gilkis
would you like to contribute a script?
home on the range