Saturday, March 29, 2014

Trophy Wife 1.17: "The Wedding: Part 2"

“You know what I would do? I would lock up man Francis and lady Frances in a room, blurt out their secrets and then just run.”

The big Harrison vow renewal drama continued with a vengeance in “The Wedding: Part 2.” Getting a look at Pete and Kate’s families, I’m kind of impressed that Pete and Kate themselves turned out so normal. Granted, the whole extended Harrison clan situation isn’t exactly normal, but Pete and Kate actually seem like people I might enjoy hanging out with. Their parents? Not so much. The parents are all caricatures taken to the extreme. Pete’s parents are almost the complete opposite of Kate’s mom (by design, I’m sure), and all three are caricatures. You can’t disagree with the casting of the three parents, though – it’s rather epic. Kate’s mother, Cricket, is played by comedienne Megan Mullally (“Will and Grace”). Pete’s parents, Francis and Frances, are played by veteran character actor Bob Gunton and Mrs. Brady herself, Florence Henderson. It’s clear that all three are having fun with the gig, which makes it fun to watch.

This episode begins where the last one left off – the airport. Cricket is in trouble for her flirtatious behavior on the airplane, and Pete uses his lawyering skills to keep the trouble from getting worse. Once Cricket’s rescue is complete, it’s time to retrieve “man Francis” and “lady Frances.” They kind of hate eah other, it seems. They certainly go out of their way not to talk to each other. They use Pete as a go between when talking about something as innocuous as dinner. It’s kind of ridiculous, really. They don’t quite know what to make of Cricket. They also start revealing things to Pete and Kate that the other doesn’t know. For instance, Francis is supposed to be retired, but he has a secret job selling decks. He goes to work in his golf clothes, changes into work clothes, then changes again before going home. Frances has sold the elder Harrisons’ house and has bought them a condo in Florida. Neither know the other’s secret. It’s kind of ridiculous, really.

Meanwhile, the wedding prep is causing some drama among the younger Harrisons. Hillary is stressing because, since she is Diane’s daughter, she wants everything about the wedding to be perfect. I still kind of miss the rebellious version of Hillary in the pilot. Hillary the mini-Diane is much less interesting. Anyway, Hillary has a very long to-do list compared to Meg’s small list scribbled on her hand. Meg is taking forever to do her own small list, though, so Hillary decide to enlist the help of Diane and Jackie. Seeing as Diane and Jackie are Pete’s ex-wives, their participation in his latest wedding is kind of awkward, to say the least, but they go with it, because the extended Harrison clan is just kind of weird like that. Both Diane and Jackie wonder if Kate is just inviting them to wedding events to be polite, but we later do learn that Kate is genuinely happy to have them participate. They’re annoying, but they’re family.

The difference between Pete and Kate’s families really comes to the forefront at the rehearsal dinner. Cricket thought it would be funny to hire some strippers since Kate didn’t get a proper bachelorette party. She didn’t stop to think that there would be kids around. Bert, to his credit, thinks the whole thing is just a hilarious dance party. The elder Harrisons are so taken aback that they immediately decide to go to bed (in separate rooms, of course). Kate has had it with her mother at this point, and she gives her a piece of her mind. Cricket doesn’t take to this well. I think she feels that Kate not being a complete, 100% free spirit with no boundaries or rules is somehow elitist. This issue is solved when Kate and Cricket have a heart to heart while Cricket is sitting on the roof of Pete and Kate’s house. Kate assures her that her living situation is anything but normal. Jackie can pop up in the bathtub in the middle of the night, after all. Cricket doesn’t feel so rejected by Kate after their conversation.

The other problem hanging out there is Pete’s parents who won’t talk to each other. Kate makes an offhand comment about wanting to put both of them in a room, blurt out their secrets, and run. Then Kate decides to actually go through with this plan. She tries a gentler approach at first, putting both the elder Harrisons in one room and instructing them to talk to each other, but when they both escape the room, Kate has finally had it, and she spills their secrets. There is no big argument like Kate expected, though. Francis and Frances just keep walking away from each other as quickly as they can, like two magnets turned to opposite poles. They don’t even hear family news at the same time. Each comes into a room separately to tell Kate and Pete that Pete’s 108-year-old great aunt has died. The funeral is on the same day as the vow renewal, so it looks like plans will have to be changed.

As their plane for Portland boards, Kate notes that there seem to be quite a few quirky characters preparing to board the flight as well. Kate sits with Bert, and when he spills on her, Hillary comes to the rescue with a change of clothes. This doesn’t seem odd because of how hyper-prepared Hillary always is. The change of clothes happens to be a white dress, though, and when Kate steps out of the lavatory, everyone on the plane stands. All the people who had looked funny when boarding remove their costumes to reveal that they are wedding guests. Meg, Diane, and Jackie are all there, and Pete and the kids are waiting at the end of the aisle. Also, Cricket is there to walk Kate down the aisle. Kate is briefly worried that Cricket stowed away on the plane, but it turns out Pete used frequent flyer miles to arrange everything. Kate walks down the aisle to a song from “The Muppets Take Manhattan,” and it’s basically her dream wedding. Just on a plane.

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