Welcome back to The Neighbors!
Before we review this week’s episode of The Neighbors, someone reminded me that we did not give proper credit to a guest star, Mr. Judd Nelson, who appeared in last week’s episode as the Security Officer in the Library.
More recently Judd Nelson starred in Bad Kids Go To Hell as Headmaster Nash. WormholeRiders News Agency Managing Editor, Kenn, subsequently reviewed Bad Kids Go To Hell which included Behind The Scenes (BTS) video after an exclusive screening of this outstanding movie during his coverage of San Diego Comic-Con in July of 2012.
Judd Nelson is a very talented actor and was a fun guest star that we hope to see again in The Neighbors, since as the high school Security Officer, his character could return many times to keep an eye on both the alien and human kids attending the local high school!
How cool and what fun would that be?!
The Back Nine:
This episode begins with the Bird-Kerseys delivering the Weavers mail to them, and going through it. One of the items of special note is an invitation to the open house of the local country club. This, of course, leads to the discussion of the class system in America.
Not to worry. Apparently, there is also a class system on Zavbron – “We are all equal. Some of us very equal, some of us middle equal, and some of us barely equal at all”.
Next, of course, we learn from Larry (Simon Templeman) and Jackie that all humans look pretty much the same to them and they distinguish each human by scent. When Larry plugs his nose, he seems to know be able to recognise Marty (Lenny Venito) and Debbie (Jami Gertz).
So, I ask myself, self, what happens when the aliens catch a cold, as they did in an earlier episode? I think that is why Marty and Debbie had such a hard time believing Larry.
Larry wants it…no, not what we were all thinking. He wants to be part of the country club. It seems that Marty is eager to be among those who he believes have made it in America. I guess their earlier speech to the neighbors really did not mean much.
Now they have to sneak away without the Bird-Kerseys being aware of them. Marty is on it. He spies on the aliens to make sure they are all inside before they dash away.
Meanwhile, inside the neighbors, Larry is disappointed not to be able to attend the open house at the country club. Fortunately, Reggie Jackson (Tim Jo) has been doing some research. He has discovered a few things about himself as an Asian, including the need to worship either Bruce Lee or Korean dictator, Kim Jong-Il. Larry votes for the dictator because he has a kind face.
Naturally, Larry wants to know about himself. Reggie tells him he cannot jump, but he can dance in a silly way while biting his lip. Larry is so funny when he demonstrates his dancing technique. Even when they try to fit in, they really do not have a prayer.
As Dick Butkus (Ian Patrick) heads outside to burn his pink skin, after learning that is what he does best as a pink person, he discovers that the Weavers are headed somewhere.
At the fancy country club, the Weavers find everything they could possibly want, soft serve ice cream, pony rides and child care, oh my. Yes, everything they could possibly want, then, the neighbors show up…
Larry Bird is puzzled that the Weavers would attend something that they had said was unpleasant. As the conversation proceeds, Larry believes that their new-found knowledge of the different races on Earth has prepared them for whatever will follow within the country club. So, do not worry, Weavers, all is well.
On the other hand, the Weavers do not think all is well. In fact, for today only, Debbie says, “we are going to distance ourselves from our true friends in an effort to further ourselves socially.” For the next little while, the neighbors continue to be themselves while the Weavers do everything they can to avoid them.
Ultimate failure seems to be at hand when the Bird-Kerseys belly up to the chocolate fountain to stare intently at it. A guest helps herself to some chocolate from the fountain to a round of applause from the Bird-Kerseys. Then, Larry says something that seems to redeem the family, “It makes me think of the beautiful words of your poet, John Keates. ‘Endless fountain of immortal drink, pouring unto us from the heavens brink’. It also makes me think of poo”. So close…
Time for Marty to take Larry outside and have a word or two. “Larry, you gotta stop acting so weird, man”. Larry does not see it, of course, “then why did they invite us”, Larry asks. Marty has to break the news, “they didn’t invite you; they invited anyone who happens to own a mailbox. Everyone is invited. You’re not special, okay?”
The Bird-Kerseys leave the club, so Larry heads over to one of the board members to attempt to ensure his family’s place in the club, only to find out that the Bird-Kerseys are in, but they are not. When we wonder why the club would want a family with such odd behaviour, it seems that there is a logical reason. They want the Bird-Kerseys because they are a mixed race family. In other words, reverse discrimination.
Marty is still upset that they did not get in, so Debbie has an answer. They can spend the money they would have spent on the club on a hot tub. Just as they begin to feel better, who should appear but Larry and Jackie (Toks Olagundoye) with the awesome news that they have been accepted.
Even more awesome is that the alien neighbors can also now offer a guest pass to the Weavers so that Larry can rub it in their faces! Except that Jackie beats Larry to the big reveal. Larry is not amused.
It is nice to see the neighbors enjoying themselves, especially when they are doing something human. However, Larry seems to go overboard enjoying sticking it to the Weavers with the access to the snobby country club. Access now only available with a guest pass provided by Larry and Jackie is a bi*ch.
Finally, things come to a head. Larry offers Marty the opportunity to join the club because an elderly couple are ill and may resign. Debbie assumes this might be another of Larry’s games, so she faces him, nose to nose.
Do not mess with Debbie when she is protecting her young or her husband. Reggie breaks down and shouts, “he’s lying”, followed by Jackie, “he just wanted to slap a guest pass on him and take a picture…” Oh dear, the gig is up.
Debbie gets angry and explains to the Bird-Kerseys that Marty really wanted into the club because he did not feel that he was good enough to get in. Everybody hugs. Poor Larry feels left out and says he was lashing out for the same reason, that his best friend on Earth did not think they were good enough. Everyone gets a big hug.
Inside the house, Debbie makes a mistake and lets slip that the country club ignored all the aliens’ weird behaviour and took them in anyway because… “What,” demands Larry. Then Debbie attempts to explain in a nice way, that they got in because they are a mixed race family. Now he gets it…
…and he is off, headed back to the country club in the golf cart, followed by Debbie and Marty who try to stop him as they drive along beside him in their van.
This is likely as close as this show will ever get to a car chase, but it is pretty funny. Especially when Larry tries to run the van off the road, and actually succeeds because Marty is not really paying attention to where he is going.
At the club, Larry is angry at the board member (Patrick Cassidy) and tells him off. The Weavers should not have been excluded simply because they are an upper middle class white family, “haven’t upper middle class white families been through enough”. Yes, the humility of being a well to do white family is just terrible. Larry pours it on with a great, but misguided speech. He ultimately resigns his family from the club. Friendship with the Weavers obviously means more than the membership. Good for him.
Dick Butkus does not know who he is, “I’m not a pink, or a WASP or an Asian or Black. I want to be judged by who I am on the outside too.” Debbie has good advice, but it does not really apply to Dick, or the other aliens, “nobody can change who they are on the outside, so what’s really important is who we are on the inside”. True, Debbie, even more so for a race of aliens who can look any way they want on the outside, including Hispanic… “Ola”.
This series has always been about accepting people who are different than ourselves, this episode, especially so. Will we ever get the point as humans? Let us hope so.
We look forward to seeing more of you here at our review site dedicated to our wonderful aliens friends known as The Neighbors!
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