Growing Pains: Season 3, Episode 25, “How the West was Won, Part 2”

This week, we see the fallout from last week’s cliffhanger.

Ben’s watching Wile E. Coyote and Road Runner. Then he changes the channel to Action News, where (much to his delight) he sees everyone being arrested from the last episode.

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Except it’s really weird how he changes the channel. Maybe it’s just the face he’s making. It just comes off that the writers didn’t have a good enough reason for Ben wanting to change the channel. So they just told Jeremy Miller to change the channel and he didn’t want to. Anyway, we see Ben getting calls from his friend Stinky. He’s who we saw with Ben in Dance Fever: Part 1 and Part 2. Besides him, we see Ben talking to his grandma and Uncle Homer. Later, however, as revealed by Maggie, we find out they don’t have an Uncle Homer.

Then we cut to an entirely different home and there’s some girl working out to an exercise video. Just like Carol was in Part 1. All I can think is, “who the hell are these people?” Turns out it’s Coach Lubbock’s family. One of his many kids, Wendy, turns the channel onto Action news. Everyone gathers along TV and learn their dad is gonna be fired.

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Yeah, not the best way to find out.

The rest of the Seavers come home and Boner’s parents are there waiting for Boner to take him home. That’s the last we see of Boner the entire episode. Boner was a big part of the last episode but it makes sense giving what happens next. Mike wants to move forward with what they’ve been doing, but Carol’s done. Now not only were Carol and Mike arrested, they were also suspended. This has destroyed Carol’s perfect attendance record.

Meanwhile, in the kitchen, Jason and Mike aren’t agreeing either. Jason’s defending what went down today because Mike’s actually committed to something. Well he was committed to acting too, but we haven’t heard or seen anything about that in a while. Maggie thinks Jason’s lost it and doesn’t see what he’s saying at all.

Jason joins Mike in the living room and Mike asks Jason if he should give up. Jason says he shouldn’t as long as he believes in the cause he’s fighting for. Someone’s knocking at the door and it honestly sounded like gun shots. It was Coach Lubbock at the door and he’s not pleased with what Mike did. Now instead of having to leave at the end of the school year, he has to leave now.

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We cut to the Lubbocks’ place. Coach Lubbock’s wife, Elizabeth, is on the fire escape waiting for her husband’s return. He comes home and after saying goodnight to 6 of his kids, he talks to Elizabeth on the fire escape.

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We later find out that they have another baby. Elizabeth gives the baby to Coach Lubbock to keep him company when he’s sitting on the fire escape alone. Now here’s something I never get about TV shows and just life in general. If people don’t make that much money, don’t have so many kids. I know people enjoy experiencing the miracle of birth, but they have to think practical. You can still have sex but just use protection. They’ll soon have 8 kids, because Elizabeth is pregnant! Elizabeth suggests to Coach Lubbock that he should work for her brother by selling medial supplies for his company. Of course Coach Lubbock is above, and he’s in the process of sending out his resume. Coach Lubbock also brings up how in all the time he’s been teaching, he’s hope a student would tell him that they were better off for having known him.

While Lubbock is out on the fire escape, we see Elizabeth trying to contact the Seavers.

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We cut back to the Seavers and we see Jason joining Mike on the front porch. Mike’s all sad because he made the situation even worse for Coach Lubbock. Jason tells Mike that this can happen and you really stick to your principals.

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He also said Maggie was right, but Mike thinks he only said that because Maggie heard Jason saying he thought she was crazy. Maggie’s been listening in on some of this conversation, until she goes to answer the phone.

We cut to the following evening where Ben’s setting the dinner table. Maggie tells him he only set it for 12 when there’s 13 eating. She says he has to do it again, but you could you easily fit a chair at the head of the table.

The Lubbocks arrive and no one (except for Maggie) knew that they were the ones coming to dinner. The families get acquainted and Mike goes for Lubbocks’ daughters, who they’re both into. The only one not present is Coach Lubbock, himself. He just wants an apology from Mike, while Mike just wants Coach Lubbock to thank him.

Elizabeth gets him out of the car and into the kitchen to see Mike. Mike and Coach Lubbock talk until both realize that neither are getting what they want.

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Coach Lubbock starts explaining his situation about how he needs to feed all those mouths, and his daughter, Connie, needing braces. Out of the 65 schools he’s sent his resume to only one of them offered him a job, and it’s in Eureka, California. The job pays a lot less too. Mike says he didn’t mean for all this to happen. He just wanted to pay Coach Lubbock back, because Lubbock’s done a lot for Mike. That’s gratifying for Coach Lubbock to hear, since he’s wanted to hear something like that in his entire career of teaching. That gives him the confidence he needs to keep on going in life and not give up. This scene might honestly be the best out of the entire episode. The episode’s quite unremarkable till this point, but it’s much better from here on how. Probably because Coach Lubbock finally gets his head out of his ass.

The families are ready to eat, but before they do Coach Lubbock has something to say. He thanks Carol for organizing the sit-in, Maggie for planning the dinner with Elizabeth, Jason for teaching Mike to sit-down for what he believes in, and Mike for reminding him of why he became a teacher and why he can’t give it up. He lastly thanks his wife for always believing in him. At this point they have really sappy music come in. The Lubbocks come in for a hug and Coach Lubbock assures them that they’ll do fine in California.

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They have quite a shocked reaction, since they had no idea about this.

The episode ends with Jason narrating over footage of the Lubbocks’ move to California. He tells the audience not to go away and that’s when it hit me. I remembered that there was a spin-off about Coach Lubbock’s family, Just the 10 of US.

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That explains why they devoted so much time to showing Coach Lubbock’s family, even though the episode was about him. So, I guess I gotta do that show to now. Now I have two mediocre family sitcoms to watch every week. The weird is thing I believe that show was already going before this episode aired. At least according to the websites that I’ve checked.

In all seriousness, I will review Just the 10 of Us. I was planning on doing it all along. I just honestly forgot it existed. My only problem is I have no idea how to get access to the show. There are no DVDs. If I find the episodes, I’ll review it ushering us in to a new era for this blog. Lookout for a name change too.

And That’s the Point.

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