May 2, 2015
Party of Five 6.18, Too Cool for School: Taking Classes, Building Things – the Family Business
Summary: Things are going well at the furniture factory with Charlie in charge. Gus reveals that a company wants to buy him out, and he’s considering the sale. Charlie’s annoyed that Gus put him in charge and is now taking away what he’s worked so hard to build up. He has a ton of ideas that he hasn’t been able to start working on yet. Gus thinks the sale will give him more time for that.
Owen wants to take Victor to school to talk about his life for show-and-tell. Victor refuses multiple times, then runs off. One of Julia and Adam’s professors objects to Julia’s use of stream-of-consciousness writing, but Adam stands up for her. He’s defensive about there not being rules in writing. Bailey meets with a woman who I guess is a career consultant or headhunter; whoever she is, she tells him he needs a business degree to do the kind of job he wants.
Charlie meets with people from the company that wants to buy the factory, and though the offer is impressive, he’s hesitant to take a job where he’ll need approval for his ideas. Claudia and Todd spend some time together before he goes to New York for a few days. He’ll be working with an old friend who happens to be a woman, so of course Claudia’s jealous. He assures her that she hasn’t been in love with him for a very long time.
Bailey tells Holly that he really, really doesn’t want to go back to college. She thinks he just needs to find something that really interests him. She’s pre-med and fascinated by everything she reads about for her classes. He just needs to find his own “pre.” Charlie tells Kirsten that he’s not sure he can take a job where someone’s always looking over his shoulder. Plus, he’ll have to make popular items, not the things he wants to make. Kirsten jokingly suggests that Charlie buy the factory, and he admits that he’s considered it.
Julia asks Adam why he got so defensive with their professor. He doesn’t like that she accepts everything their teachers say and lets them pass judgment on her. Julia points out that that’s kind of the point of college. Claudia tries to find out more about Victor, who claims there’s nothing interesting about him. She encourages him to open up about whatever he’s obviously trying to keep from Owen. Victor won’t budge.
Charlie goes over his business proposal for the factory with Bailey, who’s supportive but realistic. It’s going to be super-expensive. Downtown, Claudia spots Victor in a heated argument with a woman who he appears to buy something from. Holly invites Bailey to sit in on a class with her, but he’s made up his mind that school is a bad fit for him. Classes make him feel dumb. Adam picks a fight with his professor over his use of language and whether his story is clear. Apparently he just turned in a story by Samuel Beckett to make a point. I don’t know. Shut up, Adam.
Charlie tries to get a bank loan, but he doesn’t have enough collateral. Bailey peeks in on a biology class but finds it over his head. Then he’s drawn to an economics class, which is much more his speed. Claudia and Todd talk on the phone about Victor, but they’re interrupted when his friend Mabel picks up the line. It turns out they got caught in a rainstorm and she needed dry clothes. Plus, she lost her purse, so Todd’s letting her spend the night.
Bailey tells Charlie that he spoke to some venture capitalists who think he can come up with enough collateral for the factory sale. Charlie announces that he can’t ask everyone involved to take such a big risk just so he can make his own designs. The sale will give him lots of money and allow him to spend more time with Kirsten. Bailey thinks Charlie should go through with buying the factory – it’s right for him. Charlie says that there are things that are more important.
Claudia hears Victor on the phone, threatening to go see someone for a face-to-face confrontation. She admits that she saw him fighting with the woman downtown. Victor accuses her of suspecting that he was buying drugs. She has no right to interrogate him or invade his privacy. Julia’s distressed because Adam could get kicked out of school, but he doesn’t care. She tells him she’s at least committing to school. Adam shoots back that she’s begging for approval. He may not commit to school, but he commits to himself.
Bailey stays up late reading an economics textbook, interested in learning more about what the professor was talking about in the class he audited. Holly guesses that it’s more interesting to him now than a couple years ago because he’s had real-world experiences and knows how to apply it. He admits that he’s considering going back to college after all.
Bailey, Claudia, and Julia stage a sort of intervention on Charlie to urge him to buy the factory. They’re willing to put up their shares of the restaurant as collateral. Bailey thinks it would be riskier not to take the chance. They’d like to own a piece of Charlie’s business and be a part of something that’s growing. Charlie worries that something will go wrong and they’ll lose the restaurant. Julia and Claudia say that the family’s different now, so maybe the family business should be, too.
Claudia apologizes to Victor for prying into his personal life, but he thinks she has a right to know what’s going on. He tells her that the woman he fought with was Valerie, his sort-of girlfriend from when he was a teenager in Brooklyn. She got pregnant and wanted to marry Victor, but he’d started to realize he was gay.
Victor wouldn’t help her with the baby, so Valerie moved to San Francisco to live with her parents. Later, when Victor matured, he moved here to see Valerie and their daughter, but her parents have kept him away. The thing she gave him was a picture of their daughter. Valerie’s parents don’t think Victor wants to be a father, but that’s what he wants more than anything.
Julia goes to see Adam, but he’s split town. Todd brings Claudia flowers and a huge model of the Empire State Building to try to convince her that he doesn’t want to be with Mabel. She just wants assurance that she doesn’t need to worry, which he easily gives her. Bailey’s more anxious than Charlie to hear back from Gus about which buyout offer he wants to take. When Gus accepts Charlie’s offer, both brothers are super-excited. Charlie takes a moment to look at his designs and think about what he’ll get to make in the future.
Thoughts: Adam gives English majors a bad name. There’s always at least one who thinks he’s above critique and, you know, actually learning stuff. Why go to college at all if you’re not going to listen?
Also, this plot is turning out just like the Joey/Oliver Hudson (I can’t remember his character’s name and I’m not interested enough to look it up) plot from Dawson’s Creek that this was already similar to.
Everyone being supportive of Charlie is so sweet. I’m such a softie for supportive families.