July 7, 2013

Party of Five 2.15, Benefactors: Kind and Generous

Posted in TV tagged , , , , at 2:49 pm by Jenn

"What am I doing on this show?"

“What am I doing on this show?”

Summary: Bailey is called to his guidance counselor’s office, and he freaks out that his college acceptance is in jeopardy. The counselor tells him that he’s been chosen for a huge scholarship. The person funding the scholarship wants to take Bailey to dinner, and when Sarah notes that they’ll probably go someplace fancy, Bailey freaks out again. Sarah also notes that $10,000 a year will be more than enough for a UC school. Bailey obviously hasn’t told her that he plans to go to school on the East Coast.

Charlie and Emily have breakfast together, since she’s busy that night. He takes a long time to get the hint that she doesn’t want to see him again after whatever she’s doing later. Julia struggles in a computer-programming class, but for some reason doesn’t want Justin to help her. She thinks he’s so competitive that he’ll brag about being better at something than she is. She plans to find a tutor, which sparks the interest of some nerdy guy.

Claudia doesn’t see the point of Charlie dating Emily if it doesn’t get her any advantages in class. She keeps bugging Charlie while he’s organizing a party at the restaurant for a TV producer. Julia agrees to let the nerdy guy, Miller, tutor her, but it soon becomes clear that he’s a bit of a stalker. (She really shouldn’t have given him her password, in that case.)

Bailey has dinner with his benefactor, a Mr. Williams, and asks why he was chosen for the scholarship. Mr. Williams explains that he heard what happened to Bailey’s parents. He asks if Bailey wants to talk about them, and Bailey says he likes to, though most people assume he doesn’t. Mr. Williams wonders what Mrs. Salinger would think of him. He knows she was a musician, but claims it’s because it was in Bailey’s transcript.

Charlie chats with the birthday party’s guest of honor, Kathleen Isley, after the party at her house. She gives him one of her presents to thank him for bringing a cake even though she didn’t order one. She also invites him to stick around once he’s off the clock, but he declines. Kathleen’s a little surprised, since she’s “usually very hard to say no to.” The next morning, she sends him an Armani suit and invites him to a reception that night.

Bailey and Sarah go to the cemetery where his parents are buried; he realized at dinner the night before that he hasn’t been there for almost two years. He’s suspicious because of all the questions Mr. Williams was asking. At the gravestone, they find yellow roses that were recently left. Charlie and Emily go jogging together, and afterward he tries to get himself invited over to her place. She’s annoyed that he’s trying to move things along so quickly.

Bailey asks his siblings about the flowers at the cemetery, but none of them left them. Julia has another tutoring session with Miller, this time at the coffeehouse, which totally makes sense since there are so many computers there and everything. Whatever, she understands the work. Miller suddenly kisses her, and Julia realizes that it was for the benefit of some other nerds. She realizes that that’s the reason he volunteered to tutor her. Charlie puts on his new suit and goes to meet Kathleen. After the reception, they go back to her place for sex.

Bailey tracks down Mr. Williams at a hotel, having figured out that Mr. Williams is really Jake Gordon – his mother’s father. He doesn’t get why Jake concealed his identity. Jake says he thought Bailey would be better off not knowing who he was. Bailey bitterly says that that must be why he didn’t come see them before now. Jake admits that he didn’t even know Mrs. Salinger was dead. He’s surprised by how much pain he feels over losing someone he didn’t even know. Bailey brings up the idea of Jake meeting the other Salingers, but Jake objects – he came looking for an adult daughter, not grandkids. He can’t give the kids what they need, other than money.

Claudia thinks Charlie spent the night with Emily, and asks if he was “generous.” (She reads Cosmo.) She hopes the evening’s activities reflect favorably on her in class. Justin tries to help Julia in class, but he’s smarmy about getting good grades, and they start fighting. He tells her to do her work by herself, but, of course, she doesn’t know how to do that.

Bailey schemes to find a way to get Jake in the same room with the rest of the family. Sarah thinks it’s a bad idea – he might still not want to get to know them, and Claudia will be hurt if he walks away. Bailey thinks it’s worth taking the chance, since he’s family, and they’ve been waiting for him to come around for two years. Sarah can understand his desire to get to know his family.

Julia asks Miller for help again, despite her instincts. She offers him money, but he’d rather barter: tutoring in exchange for a date. Julia bargains him down to a date only if she gets an A on their next test. Charlie visits Emily at school and breaks up with her, but now she’s ready to move forward in the relationship and wants to keep seeing him. Julia aces her test but gets her teacher to subtract a few points so she can have an A- instead of an A.

Charlie goes to Kathleen’s to talk about their…whatever they have, but she’s busy and asks him to wait half an hour. Bailey tells Jake that he doesn’t want his money and doesn’t want to get to know him if he’s not willing to get to know the rest of the family. He doesn’t even know what to tell his siblings; he can’t really say that their grandfather only wants to know him and pay for him to go to school. Bailey plans to just forget that he ever met Jake. Mrs. Salinger used to say that Jake made things worse in her life, and now Bailey knows what she meant.

Miller argues that Julia’s A- is still an A, so she owes him a date. She doesn’t get it since they’re never going to have a relationship, and they don’t even like each other that much. He admits that he just wants a date, since he’s only ever had one. He also wants to show Julia that he’s a nice guy, so she can let her friends know, and eventually everyone in school will realize that he’s different from the way they think he is.

Emily gives Claudia some soup to take to Charlie, who apparently has a cold. And now we know what happened after Charlie gave Kathleen that half hour. Claudia confronts him over ditching Emily, but he doesn’t feel the need to explain himself. Of course, Claudia only cares about how this will affect her grade.

Bailey’s sad over his decision to avoid Jake and refuse his money, though he insists to Sarah that he’s fine with it. He talks about a crooked tooth that Jake and Charlie both have, and that Mrs. Salinger also had. Emily visits Charlie at the restaurant, arriving just before Kathleen, who’s booked him another party to cater. He doesn’t tell Emily about their personal relationship (or whatever you want to call it). Emily asks him to go on another date, then spend the night.

Julia and Miller have their date, and he successfully shows her that he’s not as dweeby as she thought. She even tells him he can kiss her, but he wants to save kissing for someone he has a romantic relationship with. The Salingers gather for family dinner, but this week they have a surprise guest: Jake.

Thoughts: Jake is played by Carroll O’Connor, who was waaaaaay too good for this kind of show.

Kathleen is played by Brenda Strong (Desperate Housewives, Dallas, Seinfeld). She seems way older than Matthew Fox here, but they’re actually only six years apart.

Trivia: Julia’s middle name is Gordon.

I love when people on TV buy clothes for other people and they fit perfectly, even though the buyer would never know the other person’s measurements.

There’s a great reaction shot of Owen when Claudia confronts Charlie – it’s like he’s thinking, “Dude, what’d you do?”

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