"Joker is Mild / First Time Out / Take My Granddaughter, Please"
Original airdate: 10/29/1977
Episode summary: A college-age virgin scours the ship for female companionship. A grandmother sets up her granddaughter with Doc. Julie re-connects with an old comedian friend of her father's who's desperate to perform in her nightly entertainment show.
Recap: Four fraternity brothers board the Pacific Princess, check in with Julie, and ask her if she thinks there'll be enough tail on board so that their virgin friend Danny can get his cherry popped...and Julie assures them that, yep, burying his weasel shouldn't be a problem. Elsewhere, Shirlee Warner boards the ship while bickering with her grandmother about how this cruise is less about her (Shirlee) finding a husband and more about it being a birthday present for the old lady. Julie, meanwhile, is giving a tour of the ship to family friend and washed up comedian Barry Keys when they run into a talent agent named Freddy Stevens. Barry self-importantly bellows at Freddy to not bother him with talk about getting signed 'cause he's strictly here to enjoy his vacation, and Freddy gives him a 'the fuck?' look and says he'd be more than happy to ignore his existence.
Grandma Warner motions Gopher over and tells him she'd like him to arrange for her and her granddaughter to be seated at the singles table for every meal, and Shirlee rolls her eyes in exasperation.
Julie gives Barry the number of his cabin, detailed directions on how to get there, then ushers him over to the elevator, where he babbles nonsensically at the couple who had the misfortune of being inside the elevator at that particular moment.
After the ship sets sail, Julie delivers a bottle of champagne to Barry in his tiny cabin and fibs, "Compliments of the Captain!" Barry happily reminisces about how her father used to bring her backstage before his performances, and Julie credits Barry for being the reason her father remained in showbiz. Barry says she's probably itching to ask him to perform his comedy schtick for the other passengers even though he's here to relax, but then "relents" and says he's willing to throw her a bone by agreeing to a fifteen minute guest spot. Julie's all, "Ack!" and gently says that that isn't, in any way, necessary - but Barry replies that he doesn't want to disappoint the captain, who clearly wants him to perform, as is evidenced by the complimentary bottle of champagne he just sent over.
Danny approaches a woman shooting photographs and tries to flirt with her by standing in front of her camera and inviting her to photograph him. She responds by snarking that he's blocking her light and to get the hell out of her frame. LOL.
Shirlee is reading by the pool when a man emerges from the water, bumps into her, and gets her all wet. She's annoyed until she realizes that the man is Dave King, an old friend of hers from high school. The two quickly catch up and learn that they're both single and available - just as Grandma strolls over to see whassup. Shirlee introduces Dave and reminds her that they briefly dated in high school...and Grandma looks encouraged by the presence of Dave - until she learns that he's an elementary school teacher. She pulls Shirlee aside, complains that teachers make shit money, and urges her to show some cleavage as she mixes and mingles with some higher earning prospects.
Danny's fraternity pals razz him about finding a woman to bone, 'cause apparently they've placed bets on his ability/inability to get his cherry popped.
At dinner, Barry is loudly cracking jokes while the crew and Captain Stubing look on in dismay. Julie tells Doc she has no idea how to break it to Barry that his comedy is too terrible for even a Love Boat variety show - just as Barry butters his hand instead of a slice of bread and cackles at the hilarity of not wanting to eat his buttered hand.
Danny stumbles upon a woman who's laying face-down as she sunbathes topless. He gushes about how attractive she is and propositions her, but then shuffles off dejectedly after she non-responsively grunts in his general direction.
Julie finds Barry at the bar, cackling to Isaac about his comedic geniuses. She pulls Barry aside and stammers about she may not be able juggle the various performers in order to squeeze him into her show, and he breezily snorts, "Details, ah.." and says he's off to rehearse. A dismayed Julie runs into Captain Stubing, who tells her that, yeah, Barry is definitely not running on all cylinders...and that she's going to have to decide whether she wants to function like a professional cruise director or be too much of a cowardly baby to level with Barry about his shittastic performance ability.
Danny approaches a woman named Barbara on the deck and asks her if she lives around here...and she looks implausibly charmed by his inept flirting before he suddenly decides that the effort is a no go and shuffles off dejectedly.
Doc gives Grandma some pills to help with her insomnia, and she explains that she's having problems sleeping 'cause she's so wired about her family problems. She then notices that Doc isn't wearing a wedding ring, asks him if he'd be up to meeting a gorgeous, sexy woman, and talks up Shirlee. As he mumbles about his complete lack of interest in doing that, Grandma asks him to come by the dining room at 7pm tonight, then rushes off to inform Shirlee about her newly scheduled quasi-blind date.
Barry is rehearsing in the lounge when Julie enters the room. As she summons the courage to break the news that he can't be in her show, Barry scrunches his face in faux pain and says he needs to sit down for a minute, catch his breath, and wistfully reflect on how desperately he needs to hear the sound of applause in order for him to feel good about himself. Julie nods sympathetically as he decrees, "But the show must go on!" and she's like 'ah, fuck it' and agrees to indulge him.
Danny is working out with a group of ladies in Doc's exercise group...and when he unwittingly flirts with a married woman, he pulls the plug on his hopeless quest to lose his virginity and collapses onto a lounger beside Barbara. She perks up at the sight of him and chats him up about his college major before proposing a generic toast to their success in life. Danny takes a sip of his drink, for some reason doesn't seem to twig onto the probability that she's totally willing to hit the sheets with him, and says it was nice talking to her before shuffling off dejectedly for the umpteenth time. As Barbara stares despondently into space, Isaac comes over, stares at her incredulously for a few seconds, and asks her if she's actually interested in a moron like Danny who's under extreme pressure by his idiot fraternity friends to get laid. Barbara shrugs unconcernedly and says she finds Danny to be bright, sweet, and nice...and figures that once he gets his rocks off, he'll settle into acting like his normal self. She then frowns and remarks on what a bummer it is that he doesn't seem to acknowledge she exists.
Shirlee is annoyed at Grandma for setting her up with Doc, then says she can't make the date 'cause she has plans to meet up with Dave King at 7pm. Grandma threatens to throw herself overboard if she's willing to give up a doctor for a nobody like Dave, and Shirlee half-heartedly pulls her away from the railing.
Julie tells Isaac she's decided to let Barry perform in the show, then explains that he's very sick and that this could be his last shot at stardom. She carries a tea tray over to Barry's cabin, and is all, "Wha-a-a-a?" when she catches him doing upper body exercises. She angrily accuses him of faking chest pains...and he admits that, yep, he's a phony who only booked himself on this cruise 'cause he knew that Freddy Stevens would be on board. He sheepishly acknowledges to Julie that he shamelessly used her, but then insists that she owes him one 'cause of the time he helped her father remain in showbiz. Julie refrains from pointing out that, by that logic, her father would be the one owing him, then stonily says that after he does tonight's show "the slate is clean".
Doc complains to Isaac that he really doesn't want to be set up with Grandma Warner's granddaughter - just as Grandma enters the lounge to drag him over towards where Shirlee and Dave are sitting. Shirlee gives Dave a heads up that she agreed to have a quick drink with Doc...and a few seconds later, Doc ambles over and looks genuinely smitten with Shirlee. He pumps her hand and ignores Dave, who Grandma quickly ushers to the dance floor. As Doc smarmily coos, "Where have you been all my life?", Shirlee grimaces and then glances helplessly over at Dave.
Danny is combing through the female names on the passenger list, which for some reason has been posted in a public space for all to see. Julie ambles over and asks him if he's having any fun on this cruise, and he sullenly retorts that the sole purpose of him coming aboard this ship was to bone a woman, not enjoy himself. Julie explains that sex is only a small part of a relationship, and suggests that perhaps he's failed thus far at getting a woman in the sack is 'cause he's trying waaaaay too hard.
Doc happily tells Grandma that everything she said about Shirlee has turned out to be true...and a few seconds later, the two run into Shirlee and Dave. Dave is abruptly summoned to the purser's desk, and Doc gleefully tells Shirlee he just arranged the summoning that so they could spend some time alone together...and Grandma cackles with delight while Shirlee scrunches her face in annoyance.
That evening, Danny is brooding on the deck when Barbara comes over and says she'd like to get to know him. When he visibly perks up at that, she suggests they take a walk around the ship and end up in his cabin, and he's like, "Sure!" before the two scamper off together. When they reach his cabin, she invites him to sit on the bed next to her, and he nervously puts on some music, recites a poem, and asks her what in blazes she's doing with a socially inept half-wit such as himself. She replies that she likes him and figured they'd get along well, then hangs her head and apologetically acknowledges what a dog she is. Danny's like, "Knock it off!", assures her she's beautiful, and leans in for a smooch.
Show time! Julie introduces Barry as the cruise's "special performer", then shoots him the stink-eye when he gives her a thank you peck on the cheek. His opening jokes fall so flat that he asks the audience if they're English speaking (LOL), and Julie is so dismayed that she flees to the deck. When Gopher follows her to see whassup, she tells him she regrets letting her personal feelings about Barry get in the way of her job as cruise director...and Gopher agrees that it was a UGE mistake to put him in the show, but says she'll probably be laughing about it in five years. Julie returns to the lounge to see how badly Barry is stinking it up, and is pleasantly surprised to see that the audience has warmed up to his schtick...and as he wraps things up, he gets an enthusiastic round of applause. Freddy Stevens races over to Barry and tells him he'd looooove to book him for some small comedy clubs, but Barry dismissively says, "Later" and pulls Julie aside to beg for her forgiveness. She beams and assures him he hasn't lost her respect, then gives him a congratulatory hug.
Shirlee stops by Doc's cabin to tell him she's in love with Dave King and afraid to disappoint her grandmother about falling for a low earning elementary school teacher. Doc mulls that over for a few seconds, then proposes she come by his office with Grandma tomorrow afternoon...and in the meantime he'll figure out a way to convince the old lady that he's really not that great of a catch [since this clearly wasn't immediately apparent to her].
The following afternoon, Shirlee brings Grandma to Doc's office, and the two find him faux boozing while staggering around and slurring his words. As he grabs at Shirlee and pretends to lecherously paw at her, an appalled Grandma calls him "a degenerate" and smacks him with her purse. Shirlee laughingly admits to Grandma that Doc was merely putting on an act for her 'cause she's in love with Dave and didn't have the guts to point out that since she's a grown woman it's none of her damn business who she hooks up with. Grandma suddenly decides she's A-OK with her granddaughter's choice of a mate and suggests they go find Dave to share the good news.
Danny and Barbara are holding hands and kissing goodbye...and a few seconds after she ambles off, Danny's fraternity brothers rush over and cackle about the towel that Danny had hung over the doorknob last night and leap to the assumption that he got lucky. Danny smiles dreamily into space, but says it was all a ruse 'cause he didn't actually have sex, and two of the guys woot about being on the winning side of that bet.
Barry is signing autographs when Freddy Stevens invites him to call in the morning to discuss reigniting his comedy career, and after that Julie escorts Barry to the ship's exit before giving him a warm goodbye hug. Grandma gushes at Dave about how thrilled she is about him possibly becoming her grandson-in-law, then gives Doc a goodbye kiss and offers to introduce him to her niece. Doc perks up at that prospect - just as Shirlee barks at her grandmother to stop her match-making and disembark with her and Dave.
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"Help, Murder / Isaac the Groupie / Mr. Popularity"
Original airdate: 10/22/1977
Episode summary: Isaac hooks up with a famous recording artist. An annoying passenger ends up being an international jewel thief. A skittish wife is convinced her husband is trying to kill her aboard the ship.
Recap: Skittish housewife Denise Fredericks tells her husband Bert she's too frightened to board the Pacific Princess, but he assures her it's perfectly safe and urges her to chillax. She tells him she's highly stressed about getting out of her regular routine - but he's just like, "Yeah, whatever. Enjoy the vacation" and ushers her aboard.
Famous singer Roxy Blue exits her limousine amid the protests of her entourage of old white men. They warn her she'll "be dead on TV" if she leaves Bob Hope in the lurch, but she's like, "I don't give a shit, I really a vacation" and rushes aboard the ship. From the deck above, Isaac spots her arrival and excitedly tells Julie and Gopher that a star is in their midst, then adds that he's a HUGE fan of Roxy Blue's music.
Bert gives Julie a friendly hello as he and Denise check in...and Julie gives them their cabin number and sends them on their way. I find it interesting that the check-in process aboard the Pacific Princess never involves the handing over of keys, a receipt, or an ID bracelet of any kind. A suspicious Denise asks Bert how he knew Julie's name, so he points out that she's wearing a name tag...then wanders back over to where Julie's standing and covertly tells her that he's the one who made special birthday plans for his wife. When he ambles back over to his wife, he fibs that he just asked Julie to pass along a message to the captain to steer the ship as safely as possible.
A particularly eager passenger cuts the line to check in with Gopher, says his name is Robert Tanner, and proceeds to spell out both R-O-B-E-R-T and T-A-N-N-E-R. The woman he cut in front of, Myra Grove, tells her husband (Harvey) that if this nut actually starts spelling out Robert she's going to scream...then opens her mouth to make good on her threat - but Harvey muzzles her and quickly whisks her off camera.
After the ship sets sail, Roxy sashays into the lounge, seats herself at the bar, and orders a Kahlúa on the rocks from Isaac. He grins excitedly, admits to being flustered in the presence of music royalty, then asks her to repeat her drink order. She repeats the order and urges him to calm the fuck down, which he responds to by chattering about how he owns every record she ever made, loooooooves her music, and is so excited that he just can't hide it. When she chuckles at his fawn-like devotion, he tells her he'd really really like to see her during the cruise, despite the fact that he's just a lowly bartender...and, as a crew member, probably shouldn't be looking to hit the sheets with the passengers. Roxy mulls that over and invites him to stop by her suite after his shift for one drink - but to keep it to himself 'cause she's trying to keep a low profile and doesn't want anyone to know she's on the ship.
Robert runs into Captain Stubing and natters at him about how the word aloha means both hello and goodbye in Hawaii...and Captain Stubing's all, "Aloha!" and makes a break for it.
Isaac arrives at Roxy's suite clutching a bottle of wine and an ice bucket. She answers the door wearing jeans and a Stevie Wonder loves you t-shirt and invites him in to chit-chat and listen to some music.
Bert enlists Gopher to take candid photographs of his wife so he can surprise her with them at her birthday party - just as Denise appears and then looks alarmed when Gopher starts trailing after her.
The next morning, Roxy stops by the bar and orders a cup of coffee from Isaac...and the two are grinning stupidly at each other when a braless Julie rushes and asks Isaac if he's seen Roxy Blue. As Roxy hides behind an open magazine, Isaac plays dumb and says he hasn't seen her, so Julie says to keep an eye out for her 'cause Captain Stubing wants to invite her to eat at his table during the last evening of the cruise.
Bert gets together with Julie to tell her he had planned to give his wife a bracelet for her birthday - but that idea got pooched when the jeweller didn't have it ready in time. Julie offers to accompany him to the gift shop and help pick something out for Denise, and he says that'd be a good idea if Denise weren't always lurking around. Cue Denise, who enters the lounge and spots the two of them talking. She tiptoes over just in time to overhear Julie joke to Bert, "We'll just have to get rid of her" ... and after Julie ambles off, Denise confronts Bert about what she can only assume is his plot to do away with her and screeches, "I am not giving you a divorce!" before storming out. Bert scrunches his face in puzzlement, no doubt wondering why he married such a paranoid wack-a-doodle and then decided it would be a good idea to vacation with her.
Inside her suite, Denise tells her mirrored reflection that she should have known Bert was up to something sinister, then bitterly laughs about how wives are always the last to know. She sniffles into a tissue - just as Gopher calls and mistakes her sniffly voice for that of Bert. He reports that he hasn't been able to get a clean [camera] shot of his wife and suggests he do it himself so he can blow her [photograph] up [in poster size]. Denise gasps at the threat of being blown up and asks who this is, and Gopher's all, "Oops!" and quickly hangs up. Smooth, Gopher.
Robert enters the lounge, seats himself with Harvey and Myra Grove, and proceeds to natter about how frequently he orders liver and onions for dinner, only to change his dinner order. As the couples' eyes glaze over, Robert says he's noticed that whenever he starts talking to people on the ship, they suddenly complain of queasiness and rush off...and Harvey and Myra perk up at that, complain of a case of sudden fake queasiness of their own, and rush off.
Roxy whines to Isaac about how her successful music career has made her a conglomerate, but that she's also a human being who desperately needed a break. He stares at her incredulously and reminds her that she walked out on Bob Hope, but she just waves her hand dismissively and says the show will get someone else to fill in...then invites him to lean in and give her a smooch.
Bert is getting a lesson on skeet shooting when Denise ambles across the deck one level below with a non-subtle Gopher in pursuit with his camera. Bert spots Denise and yells hello at her, and she freaks out by the sight of the rifle in his hand and flees. She races over to Doc's office to report that her husband is trying to kill her and that it looks like he's enlisted some of the ship's crew to help him. Doc tells her to relax and offers to calm her frenetic nuttiness by prescribing a mild sedative, and she reacts by screeching, "You're in on it tooooo!!" and bolts.
Captain Stubing spots Robert standing by himself and orders Julie and Gopher to make sure that every passenger, Robert included, is having a good time on the cruise. Julie complains that she's running out of passengers who are willing to have dinner with the guy...and when Gopher asks three random people if they'd like to eat with Robert Tanner, they react by staring at him in horror before leaping into the pool.
Myra and Harvey are lounging above deck when Myra comes across an article in the newspaper about an international jewel thief who's currently at large. The scoundrel's name is Roscoe Toller, which - as Myra points out - has the same initials as Robert Tanner. She leaps to the conclusion that Robert must be the thief, and Harvey's all, "Ack!" and suggests they report their theory to the Captain. Myra's all, "Hell no!" and says she's always wanted to be friends with a wanted criminal, which...um, OK.
Isaac tells Gopher he's been hanging with Roxy Blue and that deep down she's just a regular woman, aka the kind of woman a man [such as himself] would want to marry. When Gopher chuckles at that implausible outcome, Isaac earnestly insists that Roxy really is the one for him.
Bert places an order with the chef to bake a chocolate cake for his wife's birthday party, then rushes over to the lounge to excitedly tell Julie he can now cross that to do item off his list. Julie tells him she just found the perfect gift for Denise: a gold choker. She adds that since a choker has to fit snugly, he's going to need to figure out Denise's neck size, then suggests he measure it by slipping his bathrobe sash around it while she's asleep...and naturally Denise appears out of nowhere to overhear that out-of-context part of the conversation. She returns to her suite and locks the door, but is all, "Ack!" when Bert emerges from the bathroom to ask whassup. She tells him she isn't feeling well and would prefer to stay in tonight, and he offers to keep her company so she doesn't spend the entire evening alone.
Presumed jewel thief Robert Tanner is holding court at the bar, fascinating a gaggle of jewel thief groupies by nattering about how he often orders liver and onions for dinner and changes orders...but then other times sticks with his liver and onions order. He admires Myra's necklace...and when he remarks that he doesn't know much about jewelry, everyone chuckles knowingly.
Bert urges Denise to come to bed - but she stares fearfully into space and says she wants to stay up and finish reading her extremely thick book.
As Isaac and Roxy lounge in bed together (!) , Isaac gushes about how their hookup is the greatest thing to have ever happened to him. He coos, "I love you", to which Roxy reacts by getting angry at him for being "sentimental". He insists that he loves her more than he's ever loved anyone in his life - easy, dude - and she gets visibly annoyed and tells him he just blew it. She snarkishly says she's going to take Captain Stubing up on his offer to dine at his table tomorrow night, then snaps at him to shut off the light, shut up about professing his love for her, and do his best to enjoy what's left of their time together. Ouch.
Eventually, Denise falls asleep while reading, and Bert takes the opportunity to slip his bathrobe sash around her neck to get an accurate measurement for the gold choker. Denise wakes up in mid-measuring, assumes he's trying to kill her, and flees the cabin screaming bloody murder.
Captain Stubing has assembled his crew in the dining room and is listening to a freaked out Denise describe how convinced she is that Bert and part of the ship's crew are in on a conspiracy to kill her...and when everyone starts talking at each other at once, Captain Stubing orders them to shut it and calmly tell him what in blazes is going on. Bert explains that he's been planning a birthday party for Denise with as many misunderstandings about his intent as possible:
A stunned Denise is all, "Wha-a-a-a? You're not trying to murder me?" and giggles with relief - just as the chef emerges with the giant birthday cake Bert ordered. Bert and the crew sing Happy Birthday as Denise gazes at it happily.
Robert Tanner arrives in the dining room and tells a large table of passengers that the police found the international jewel thief aboard another ship. The passengers groan in disappointment at him not being the thief and beat a hasty retreat.
Captain Stubing excitedly announces to the passengers that Miss Roxy Blue is on board - just as she makes a grand entrance on Doc's arm. Captain Stubing motions at Isaac to bring over some champagne...and as he pours glasses for everyone at the captain's table, Roxy makes a snide joke about how she's faithful to every man she finds attractive. She then glares at Isaac and barks, "Roxy is thirsty" and tells him to step it up with the champagne pouring. Captain Stubing, who seems oblivious to her rudeness towards Isaac, asks if she wouldn't mind performing for the passengers, and she agrees and croons Come Rain or Come Shine while staring intensely at Isaac.
When the ship docks, Robert Tanner bids adieu to Gopher, who checks his bag and jokes about him stealing the ship's supply of liver and onions. Robert thanks him for everything and says he's going to recommend the Pacific Princess to all of his [non-existent] friends.
Roxy stops by Isaac's cabin to chide him for the no booty call last night, and he wryly says he was much too tired from serving drinks all night. She invites herself in and says she tried to tell him how things are, e.g. that their little world didn't have anything to do with reality. She then describes herself as a show piece, an object, a star - so Isaac reminds her that she's also a woman...to whom he thought he was getting through. She stares wistfully into space and wanks him by telling him he's too much of a man to be Mr. Roxy Blue...not to mention that she's been married three times previously to men who weren't able to handle her success. She apologizes for the shitty way she treated him and hopes he can forgive her, and he just shrugs and pretends that they merely enjoyed a few laughs. Roxy stares back at him solemnly and says, "It was more than that. A lot more" and gives him one last smooch.
Bert and Denise thank Julie for helping out with the disastrous birthday party celebration. Bert suggests to Denise that they extend their vacation by flying to Las Vegas, but Denise looks panicked and reminds him how stressed she gets about air travel.
Myra races into the lobby and screeches that all of her jewelry has been stolen - just as a crew member appears with her jewelry case and tells her that some guy just returned it to him. Myra opens it and finds it empty, save for a note from Robert Tanner, identifying himself as Roscoe Toller, aka international jewel thief at large. He ends the note by urging Myra to not get robbed by her insurance company. Womp womp!
Isaac watches as Roxy's white man entourage arrives to pick her up. When Gopher ambles over, Isaac glumly tells him that Roxy Blue is a very nice lady and that he highly doubts they'll ever see each other again. He then pretends as though he was the dumper in this scenario and declares that he's saving himself for someone really terrific - just as Roxy stares up at him and gives him one last wistful look before climbing into her limo and disappearing from Isaac's life forever.
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"Message for Maureeen / Gotcha / Acapulco Connection"
Original airdate: 10/15/1977
Episode summary: Captain Stubing is charmed by a Mexican guitar playing stowaway named April. A sportswriter and the tennis player he once bashed in his column resolve their differences and fall in love. A prankster finally gets a taste of his own medicine.
Recap: Serial prankster Cyril Wolfe boards the ship with his wife (Anita) and greets Julie by sticking out a fake plastic hand, then does the 'handshake with a joy buzzer' trick on another passenger, Reverend Dickerson, who gets angry and storms off with his wife (Martha). As Cyril sheepishly ambles off-camera, Anita tells Julie that she's been putting up with her idiot husband's constant need to prank everyone he's come across for twenty years and is utterly fed up.
Gopher is wheeling a wheelchair-bound woman, famous tennis player Maureen Mitchell, onto the ship. When they reach the lobby, Captain Stubing greets her and tells her he's been following her tennis career for years, then invites her to dine at his table this evening. After the crew checks her in, she assures Gopher that she's quite capable of wheeling to her cabin without his assistance.
Maureen runs into her ex-boyfriend and sports columnist, John Ballard. When he asks her how her injured back is doing, she snaps, "None of your business" and makes it clear how displeased she is to see him. John chides her for continuing to harbor a grudge 'cause he trash-talked her in his column after she played shittily during her last tournament, and she primly retorts that she only uses his column for wrapping fish. As she wheels off, John bellows after her, "Get well soon...the game needs you!"
When Cyril and Anita return to their cabin after dinner, Anita admonishes him for pranking the Captain with a dribbling glass. When she barks, "Stop it!", Cyril says he can't seem to control his prankish instincts. Anita sighs wearily and opens her makeup kit, then screeches when a stuffed snake bursts out of it.
Gopher wheels Maureen over to Doc's office for a checkup...and when she hands Doc her medical records, he looks them over and squeals that he went to med school with her orthopedist. She tells him she's scheduled for back surgery after the cruise...and a few seconds later, John hobbles in with a sprained knee. Doc tapes it up, then orders him to stay off it for a few days by confining himself to a wheelchair...which seems like a really contrived way to force John to experience first-hand what it's been like for temporarily disabled Maureen to function without the use of her legs, 'cause his sprained knee seems a lot more like a crutches or walking cane type injury.
A poofy-haired Mexican souvenir vendor toting a guitar named April boards the ship, and Gopher informs her that she needs to leave pronto 'cause the ship is about to depart Acapulco. April incoherently begs him for more time to sell souvenirs 'cause apparently she's the sole breadwinner of her family, but Gopher's just like, "That sounds like your problem" and heads upstairs. April sneaks deeper into the ship, finds a housekeeping closet, and climbs into a laundry hamper as she excitedly proclaims, "Am-edika, here I come!"
Gopher and Julie are milling around the lobby when they spot a hundred dollar bill on the floor...which Cyril Wolfe has attached with an invisible string and is hovering over the nearby stair landing, anticipating hilarity to ensue. Captain Stubing wanders over and asks the two what they're doing, and they pretend that they were about to put the money in the 'lost and found'. He snatches the bill away from them - just as Anita rushes over and apologizes for her husband's prank. Captain Stubing responds by snapping the string that's attached to the bill and declaring that he'll allocate the $100 for the Christmas fund. Haha!
Wheelchair-bound John runs into wheelchair-bound Maureen in front of the elevator...and when he has trouble getting into the elevator she tells him it's easier to back in. John thanks her and suggests a time-out from their constant bickering, and she happily agrees.
Julie tells Captain Stubing she's putting together a show to entertain the passengers and suggests he join her list of performers. He haughtily retorts that as Captain he can't command respect if he's seen singing or dancing, then ushers her out of his cabin. In the hallway, the housekeeper arrives...and a moaning sound can be heard from inside her laundry hamper. When April pops out and complains about her queasy stomach, the housekeeper tells the Captain she has no idea how the woman got in there. Captain Stubing wearily mutters, "Just what I need: a stowaway", which April translates literally and woots at the invitation to remain on board for the duration of the cruise. Captain Stubing clarifies that she broke the law and says she must leave the ship at the next stop...prompting April to screech joyously 'cause she assumes the ship is America-bound - until she's told that the next stop is Mazatlan. April begs the captain to keep her on the ship so she can disembark in Los Angeles and break into show business, but he refuses and summons Gopher to escort the transgressor to Doc's office - which, for some reason, he thinks is the best place for her to be spending the night.
Gopher escorts April to Doc's office, where Doc gives her pills for seasickness and tells her to go lie down in her cabin. Gopher says she can't 'cause she's a stowaway and that Captain Stubing wants her to bunk with him until they reach Mazatlan...and Doc perks up at the prospect of spending the night with a sexy Latina and literally shoves Gopher out of his cabin.
That evening, Anita orders dinner in, and complains to Cyril how sick she is of being out in public with him 'cause of his relentless pranking...and as she's admonishing him, he picks apart the flower that's on their dinner tray and puts the petals on his lips in an attempt to get a laugh out of his wife. An unamused Anita threatens to divorce him if he doesn't stop this kind of sophomoric nonsense, then sits in a chair that he rigged to collapse under her weight. She flails about and shrieks, "I want a divorce!" as he does his best to help her to her feet.
Over dinner, Maureen tells John that the operation she's scheduled to undergo has a high success rate, and is therefore confident that it'll fully restore her ability to walk. John gazes at her all dreamy-like and asks, "Whatever happened to us?", and she reminds him that when they were together they were both so laser focused on their careers...and never ended up following through on their plan to take off an entire month to just hang out together. She makes it clear that she's super eager to hit the sheets with him once she's out of her wheelchair...and John perks up at that prospect and raises a toast to true love.
Gopher rails at Isaac for bailing on their act for Julie's show...and then the two cackle about how April is spending the night with Doc. Julie decides she should prolly check in on her new Mexican friend and heads over to Doc's cabin...and finds Doc in his bathrobe and a fully clothed April putting sheets and pillows on the exam table for Doc to sleep on. Julie nods approvingly at the separate sleeping arrangements and looks assured that no unwarranted hanky panky is about to be indulged in.
Hours later, a scantily clad April wakes a bare chested (!) Doc to tell him how skeered she is about leaving the ship tomorrow, and how ashamed she is to return to her family without first hitting it big as a musical artist. Doc assures her she'll be fine in Mazatlan, and urges her to continue following her dream to make it into show business. April seems satisfied enough with that response, gives him a grateful hug, and scampers back to bed.
The next morning, the crew bids April adiós...and she glances around shiftily before rushing towards the exit.
Doc removes John's knee bandage and declares his knee fully healed...and as John is exiting the exam room, Doc gets a call from Maureen's orthopedist. Doc's all, "Wha-at? That's terrible news. The operation is off?" and John looks alarmed at what he's just overheard and reenters the office to discuss Maureen's condition. Doc forbids him to share the privileged information about her permanent paralysis...but when John implores him to let him be the one to break the devastating news to his lady love, Doc's like 'I'm pretty sure that doctor-patient confidentiality is more of a guideline than a ruling principle' and gives him the OK to risk him losing his medical license and spill the beans.
That afternoon, April sneaks back onto the ship with the other returning passengers and heads straight to Doc's office. He reminds her that she was supposed to return to her family - but then promises to not rat her out and invites her to bunk with him again.
John drops by Maureen's cabin - but can't bring himself to tell her the devastating news of her diagnosis and instead suggests they take a trip to the mountains after the cruise, then proposes marriage. Maureen happily accepts and says she can't wait to walk down the aisle with him...and as the two embrace, John stares sadly into space.
Anita pulls off the kick me signs that Cyril taped to the backs of Reverend Dickerson and his wife and apologizes for his relentless pranks. Cyril, who's eavesdropping, decides it'd be funny to toss his hat into the ocean and cry, "Help! Man overboard!", and Reverend Dickerson and his wife panic and try to find someone who can rescue the drowning man - but then abruptly stop and correctly assume that it's yet another of Cyril's pranks. They find Anita and tells her about the hat...and when she assures them that Cyril's fine, Reverend Dickerson suggests turning the tables on Cyril and making him the butt of the joke for a change. Anita grins and says she definitely likes the sound of that.
Gopher, Isaac, and Julie discover April in Doc's cabin...and Julie says she may have a way that they can break the news to Captain Stubing without his head completely exploding.
Cyril finds a suicide note in his cabin from Anita, claiming that she flung herself overboard to join her darling husband in his watery grave. Cyril sinks into a chair and sadly moans, "I'm sorry...I didn't mean it" - just as Anita, Martha, and Reverend Dickerson burst out of the bathroom and yell, "Gotcha!"
That evening in the lounge, Julie welcomes the passengers to Crew Night and introduces Gopher and Isaac, who have faces painted on their torsos, and are wearing giant hats and baggy suits...and the singing duo is a big hit with passengers. After that number, Julie announces "a very special treat", then introduces April...and wanks her boss when she describes the Latina as "Captain Stubing's personal discovery". April, who's decked out in a fitted black glittery gown, plays guitar and sings while sexily gyrating, and Captain Stubing looks impressed, and gets congratulated by various passengers during her standing ovation.
John and Maureen are on the deck, gazing out at the ocean when John excuses himself to get them some brandy. During his absence, Doc rushes over and apologizes to Maureen for the misinformation he assumes that John passed along to her, and explains that a lab flunky at the orthopedist's office mixed up her test results with a paralyzed person's. He says her operation is back on, and assures her that she's going to be A-OK. Maureen digests what Doc just told her, then begins to wheel away...and ends up running straight into John. She tells him she has no desire to be with a man who's marrying her out of pity, then explains that she just spoke to Doc, who told her about her diagnosis...and chides him for not having the guts to tell her the truth. John says he simply couldn't bring himself to tell the lady he loves that she'll never walk again, but insists that he loooooves her and would be lucky to have her in any condition. Maureen looks incredulous and asks, "It really doesn't matter to you?" and he assures her that it absolutely doesn't. Maureen happily informs him that all signs point toward her being back to her usual walking self after the surgery - but that she'll need his love and support during the recovery process. He exclaims, "You've got me!" and leans in for a big smooch.
When the ship docks in Los Angeles, Cyril and Anita greet their young son. The lad offers to take their photo...and by take their photo, he means use a trick camera that squirts out water. Womp womp! As Anita groans wearily, Cyril chuckles and chirps, "That's my boy!"
John and Maureen disembark while nattering about their wedding plans, and inform Julie and Gopher that the entire crew is invited.
Captain Stubing informs April that she's been hired as an entertainer aboard another ship for $300 a week, and she jumps up and down and shrieks joyfully while lunging at him in a series of forcible hugs. He warns her that the cost of this cruise is going to be deducted from her pay check, and she's all, "Wuh?" and rambles incoherently as the crew grins delightedly at the happy ending.
"Ex Plus Y / Graham & Kelly / Goldenagers"
Original airdate: 10/8/1977
Episode summary: Julie becomes smitten with a handsome tour guide. A recently divorced couple enjoy one last roll in the hay before pretending it never happened and going back to their significant others. Two preteens explore the awkwardness of falling in love for the first time.
Recap: As the passengers excitedly board the ship for this week's instalment, Julie and Gopher are going over checkin-ins on the passenger list when Julie happens to glance across the lobby, see something she likes, and murmur, "Gorrrrrgeous." Gopher scrunches his face confusedly and says that there's no passenger by that name, then sees that she's ogling a dreamy looking man who's headed in their direction. He gazes all smitten-like at Julie as he introduces himself as Jim Wright, and Julie purrs, "Mmm...Mr. Right." He explains that he's a tour guide for a Life Begins at 60 group of pain-in-the-ass seniors, then invites Julie to join him for a coffee before the cruise gets fully underway. She eagerly accepts - 'cause why would there be a policy about the ship's crew romantically fraternizing with passengers? - just as the Life Begins at 60 seniors enter the ship loudly singing Row Row Row Your Boat and demand that Jim come along with them while they check out the ship's amenities.
Newlyweds Terry and Ron Larsen are above deck, marvelling at how much sunnier and warmer it is in Los Angeles versus Chicago. Ron asks his wife if she called her ex-husband Barney prior to leaving for the cruise, then says he wants her to resolve their differences so that she doesn't harbor any feelings of deep resentment that might spill over into their marriage...and reminds her that he's an expert in this stuff 'cause he used to be their marriage counsellor, pre-divorce. Terry's like, "Uh, I do harbor feelings of deep resentment for the asshat", then glances around the ship and is all, "Ack!" when, by scripted coincidence, she spots Barney. She puts her hoodie over her face and heads for the nearest exit...and when Ron implores her to show some maturity and talk things out with her ex, she pulls her hoodie on tighter and continues fleeing.
Kitty Pickrel enters the lounge, where her new young friends, Kelly and Polly, are playing cards. When she notices that her grandson Graham is staring over at Kelly in stunned fascination, she motions him over to introduce himself...and he ambles over, but then does some kind of weird Igor type impersonation while pretending to be stabbed, then collapses onto the floor and crawls towards the exit. Kelly's like, "Er, OK..?" and tells Kitty that her grandson is cute, but really fucking weird.
Barney is skeet shooting while his new lady love, Judy, watches and wanks him about what an awesome shot he is. He tells her that his secret to hitting the target is thinking about his ex-wife while he pulls the trigger...then starts railing about how horribly she treated him and his friends. He glances around the ship and just happens to spot Terry with Ron, and jokingly (?) aims his rifle at her and pretends (?) to want to open fire on her.
Julie emerges from the swimming pool just as Jim wanders over and says he'd loooove to spend some quality time with her. She tells him she's definitely up for that - just as the Life Begins at 60 seniors charge over and drag Jim along for whatever old people adventures they're about to embark upon that, for some reason, they don't want to embark upon on their own.
Doc is discussing famous bridges with Graham, while Kitty rolls her eyes and says she worries about Graham not enjoying his pre-teenage years like a normal kid might. When Kelly ambles over to say hey, Graham gets nervous and does his weird Igor schtick before beating a hasty retreat, and Kelly shrugs and says that she can only conclude he's a mental patient who has zero interest in her.
Barney and Terry encounter each other in an elevator and spend the ride bickering and bragging about their new significant others, blah blah...and after about a minute, my brain started to tune them out.
Kelly asks Julie for some grown woman perspective about the opposite sex and asks her if she knew how to handle boys back when she was a pre-pubescent. Julie says there are two types of boys: some you learn to handle, and some you never figure out. Kelly asks what in blazes she's supposed to do with a cute but extremely weird boy who seems incapable of behaving like a normal person, and Julie suggests she draw him out by asking him questions about himself, given that most guys thoroughly enjoy talking about themselves. Heh. As that's happening, Graham tells Doc he keeps getting tongue-tied around Kelly and wants advice about what to say to her, so Doc suggests he flatter her by telling her how nice she looks, then proudly says that he's somewhat of an authority on women, having been married four times. Graham's all, "Holy shit! Four times?!" and stares back at him in horror. LOL.
Terry and Ron arrive at the Captain's table for dinner - but stop short when they notice that Barney and Judy have also been invited to dine with the Captain. Terry snarks at Barney to leave - just as Captain Stubing arrives and asks Terry and Ron to take their seats, specifically in boy-girl-boy-girl order to generate maximum drama. Judy makes smalltalk with Terry by telling her how much she looooves living in her ex-house and mentions some decor changes that Barney made, and Terry hits the roof when she learns that Barney replaced the hardwood floor in the dining room with astroturf. Seems like a stupid decision for future resale, but OK. Captain Stubing quickly tires of the squabbling and orders them to shut the fuck up so that everyone sitting around them can enjoy their dinner in peace.
Kelly is primping in her cabin after getting a note from Graham, inviting her out to the lounge for an evening of G rated clubbing.
Graham frets about a new pimple, but Kitty assures him it looks like a freckle, and that no one will notice or care. When he tells her he's too nervous to go through with the date, Kitty sternly orders him to put his jacket on and head over to the lounge...and Graham reluctantly obeys and opens the cabin door and finds Kelly standing in the doorway. In the next scene, the two arrive at the lounge and get a table for two...and Graham tries to look smooth by tipping Isaac with what is actually a crumpled tissue. LOL.
As the adults get down and boogy on the dance floor, Kelly tries to initiate conversation with Graham by asking him questions about his interests and favorite classes, but he just grunts one word answers before robotically chirping, "You look nice tonight." From across the room, Julie notices the awkwardness and coos to Doc, "Those poor kids" ... and a few seconds later, Kelly gets fed up with Graham's social stuntedness and storms out of the lounge.
Kelly flees to her cabin, cries, "He hates me!" and flops onto her bed before bursting into tears...and Polly's all, "Wuh?" and does her best to comfort her weeping sister.
It's 2am before Jim can extricate himself from the Life Begins at 60 seniors and invite Julie to come back to his cabin with him. Mmm hmm.. Julie cackles, "I don't normally do this!" - just as Jim opens his cabin door and finds several drunken seniors from the tour group camped out on his floor playing poker and smoking cigars.
Terry admits to Ron that Barney is actually a nicer guy than she remembered...and Ron reminds her that they promised to meet up with Barney and Judy in the bar in a few minutes to hang out unnecessarily. Terry says she wants to finish the chapter of the book she's reading, so she urges him to go on ahead and promises to catch up with them shortly.
When Julie makes an announcement over the PA system about a game of jackpot bingo beginning imminently, Ron and Judy squeal excitedly and head over to the games room. A disinterested Barney says he'll pass on jackpot bingo and will instead stop by Terry's cabin to see what's been holding her up.
Barney chides Terry for being so late meeting up with them, and she apologizes and says she got distracted while brushing her hair. Barney gazes at her longingly and says it was worth the wait 'cause of how awesome she looks, just as she notices that he's wearing the fugly plaid jacket she gave to him for Christmas one year. When she asks him to help her with her zipper, he gets a whiff of her perfume and recalls that she was wearing it the night they first met. He then starts caressing her hair, and she whirls around and stares at him hungrily before the two lean towards each other and lock lips in an intense smooch.
Jim staggers into the lounge and finds Julie seated at the bar, and grumbles at her about being run ragged by the Life Begins at 60 seniors. The two find a quiet table so they can finally share a tender moment - but, as anyone could predict, it immediately gets cut short when the seniors storm into the bar playing bagpipes.
Over by the pool, Kitty admonishes Graham for acting like such a horse's ass in front of Kelly, and he argues that he's merely acting like the socially inept twelve year old he is. Kitty turns her attention to Kelly and complains that because of her, Graham has turned into lousy company, then orders the two to at least try to relate to each other as friends. Kelly hands Graham a towel to dry himself off with and does her best to initiate conversation, and this time he actually makes an effort to retort with more than just one word answers...and soon the two are grinning happily at each other.
Terry and Barney get dressed after their impromptu doink, each expressing surprise at their shitty philandering. Terry calls the extramarital liaison a mistake and says they were wise to end their rollercoaster of a toxic relationship that apparently only had hot sex going for it. She says she now realizes that the anger she's been feeling for him was actually leftover passion, and that Ron - her now cuckolded husband - means sooooo much more to her than that [even though she doesn't have a scrap of self-reflection to wryly remark to herself that she has an interesting way of showing it]. The two concur that when things between them were good they were very very good, but very very bad when they were bad, and agree that they both like and hate each other at the same time.
Above deck, Graham admits to Kelly that he's been acting so damn weird around her 'cause she makes him nervous, then asks her if she's ever kissed anyone. She says she hasn't, and he leans in for a smooch...and afterwards the two stare out at the ocean.
Julie spots Jim dancing with an old lady and cuts in, steers him over to a table, and admonishes him for standing her up at dinner. He explains that he got roped into playing ping-pong with the Life Begins at 60 seniors...and when he leans in for a long-awaited smooch, one of the seniors marches over and forcibly drags Jim onto the dance floor.
Hours later, an exhausted Jim stops by Julie's cabin in a last ditch effort at some much anticipated canoodling. Julie invites him in and offers to fix him a drink...and as she's doing that, she natters about how much she'd looooove to get to know him better - but when she turns around with his drink, she finds him fast asleep atop her bed. Womp womp!
Terry thanks Ron for urging her to confront Barney about her unresolved anger towards him, then tears up and coos, "I love you very much." He hugs her back and says, "That's all you have to say" ... and she lets out a sigh of relief that he's not remotely curious about her newly softened feelings for her ex after they were suspiciously MIA for several hours while he and Judy were playing jackpot bingo.
Graham tells Kelly that yesterday was the greatest day of his life and that he wants to see her after the cruise. As the two bid each other goodbye, Kelly coos, "I love you" ... and it freaks Graham out so much that he lapses into his Igor impersonation/mental safe space before slinking off.
Julie and Jim are gazing at each other, lamenting the many missed opportunities to have told the Life Begins at 60 seniors to fuck off so they could have some private time to develop a budding romance. Jim tells Julie he'd like to see her in L.A. sometime, and she says she's A-OK with that and reminds him that they still have thirty minutes before the ship docks. As they lean in for a smooch, the seniors wander over to apologize for monopolizing Jim's time during the entire cruise. They admit to being selfish dickwads as they, in real time, continue to be selfish dickwads by making no attempt to leave the couple alone right now...and Jim wearily tells Julie he needs to get the group ready to go ashore - but promises to be in touch, even though I'm pretty sure this is the last we'll ever see of "Mr. Right".
Julie asks Kelly how her cruise went, and Kelly tells her that Graham falls into the category of guy you never figure out. A few seconds later, she spots him a few levels down after he's gotten off the ship, and he yells, "That thing you said...I do too!" and Kelly squeals happily and demonstrates his by now waaaay overplayed Igor schtick for Julie.
Ron says goodbye to Barney and Judy, and the couples wish each other good luck before accidentally splitting up in the wrong configuration: Terry with Barney, Judy with Ron. The four chuckle heartily at that disturbing impulse, then scramble to climb into the correct cabs.
"Oh, Dale! / Main Event / Tasteful Affair"
Original airdate: 10/1/1977
Episode summary: A private investigator falls in love with the woman he's tailing. A married couple who bickers constantly gets stuck in an elevator. A man who's just been dumped is so desperate to be on the same cruise with his ex-girlfriend that he poses as a woman in order to get the last female only cabin available.
Recap: Janette Bradford is staring despondently at her husband Lucas as he natters at her about what a bad time it is for him to be away from the office. She wryly says it always seems to be a bad time for him to want to carve out quality time with her, so he snarkishly points out that he has no choice but to be a workaholic 'cause someone's gotta pay for their extravagant house and fancy toys. Janette says she doesn't care about any of that material stuff, but that she's actually A-OK with going on this week's Love Boat cruise by herself 'cause she has some serious life decisions to contemplate. Lucas seems indifferent to that red flag and gives his wife a cheek kiss before wishing her [and his marriage] bon voyage. A few feet away, a blonde man named Dennis Kingsley, who's been watching the exchange, wanders over to Lucas. Lucas asks him if he got a good long look at his wife...and when Dennis says he did, Lucas reminds him that his task will be to follow her around on the down-low and report back to him if/when he catches her engaging in any illicit hanky panky.
Maurice Marshall and his wife Stella board the ship and grumble to Julie that their twenty-three year marriage is the shits. Maurice pulls out one of his business cards that's in the shape of a sausage and proudly tells Julie he's known as "the sausage king" ... and Julie feigns interest in his sausage making company as she scans the passenger list and gives them the number of their assigned suite. Maurice and Stella head up the staircase, bickering non-stop in case we had any doubt about what a misery their twenty-three year marriage has become for them, along with anyone who has the misfortune of being in their orbit.
Dale Reinhardt races after Joanne, aka the woman he hooked up with for one weekend, declared his love to, but was unceremoniously dumped so that she could move on to her next squeeze. Joanne tells him she feels nothing for him and much prefers hanging with her newest boy toy, not least 'cause he drives a fancy Mercedes. As she flees the lobby, Dale marches over to the front desk and tells Gopher he desperately needs to book a ticket for this cruise - but Gopher's like, "No can do" and tells him that the cruise is fully booked. When Dale asks him to double-check the passenger list in case there was a cancellation, Gopher discovers that there is one opening - but that he can't give it to him 'cause it's for a shared accommodation with a woman. Dale mulls over that setback as he wanders around the lobby and studies the arriving passengers: a woman carrying a wig box and a group of tall ladies with unattended suitcases. He glances around furtively before grabbing the wig box and suitcases and scampers up the staircase undetected.
Inside the men's room, Dale emerges from a stall decked out in a red-haired wig and a hideous red polka-dot dress, looking every bit as absurdly mannish as one would expect a man with a distinctly non-feminine build and/or facial features to look like. S(he) heads back to the front desk, introduces her/himself as Dale Riley, and asks Gopher if there are any available tickets for sale. Gopher tells her/him s(he)'s in luck 'cause there's one available ticket left, which he's only allowed to sell to a woman since it's for a shared accommodation with a female...and by woman he means a man who's unconvincingly trying to pass himself off as a woman and looks suspiciously like the man who was inquiring about purchasing a cruise ticket just a few minutes earlier.
As the ship sets sail, the passengers converge on the deck so they can simultaneously wave goodbye and litter the ocean with streamers and confetti...and Janette stares sadly into space while Dennis keeps a close eye on her from a distance.
She-Dale locates her/his cabin and finds the woman inside sobbing. When s(he) asks whassup, the woman tearfully introduces herself as Susan Ridley and explains that she's supposed to be on her honeymoon - but that it's not actually her honeymoon 'cause her husband-to-be (Jerry) ran off with another woman just hours before the wedding. She-Dale tells her that the man is clearly an idiot, then says they have something in common 'cause s(he) was also just jilted. Susan's like, "Oh, bummer" and slips out of her negligee and announces that she's taking a shower...and a flustered She-Dale gasps as if s(he)'s never seen boobies before.
After dinner, Janette is enjoying a glass of wine when a handsome gentleman approaches her and invites her to dance. She politely declines and tells him she's waiting for someone, then decides to call it a night and wanders over to the bar to settle the bill with Isaac. When Isaac nosily calls her out on fibbing to the gentleman just now, she says she did that 'cause she didn't want to hurt his feelings, then says she's off to her cabin to get a good night's sleep. Dennis, who's been sitting at the far end of the bar on his secret spy mission, stares after her in contemplative puzzlement.
The next morning, Dale is in search of a linen closet so he can change back into his fugly lady clothes when he happens to run into Julie. He tells her he'd like to know the cabin number of his ex-girlfriend so he can stalk her throughout the cruise, and she tells him she'd be more than happy to violate the woman's privacy and looks her up on the passenger list. Dale then makes a beeline over to Joanne's cabin - and is miffed to see that there's an if this room's a-rockin', don't come a-knockin' sign on the doorknob. Ouch.
Janette is playing a game of solitaire, while Doc for some reason is hovering over her and mansplaining what each move should be. A few seconds later, a bosomy woman sashays over and reminds Doc that he promised her a private tour of the ship - mmm hmm - and Doc heads off with her and leaves Janette to her card game. The ever-present Dennis notices all this from his seat at the end of the bar and stares over at Janette with a look of heightened contemplative puzzlement.
Captain Stubing notices She-Dale exiting the linen closet decked out in the hideous red polka-dot dress. When he asks She-Dale whassup with exiting the linen closet, s(he) giggles and says she could have sworn the sign said ladies room...and Captain Stubing decides that that sounds like a reasonable answer and looks visibly charmed by the giggling moose woman.
As Maurice and Stella get ready for dinner, Maurice says he plans to give the Captain a package of his sausages in the hope of hustling free advertising for his sausage business. He asks Stella to put the package in her purse, and she snipes about having to carry around a stinky package of sausage...and soon the two are bickering back and forth. They enter the elevator and get so irked at each other that they begin arguing about skipping dinner/not skipping dinner and repeatedly press the up/down elevator buttons. Eventually this breaks the elevator, which comes to an abrupt stop and effectively traps the two inside. [Please do not free them.]
Dennis is having dinner with a couple he met at the bar the other night, and they inform him that they've gotten to know a nice single gal and invited her to join them. By scripted coincidence, the "single" gal turns out to be Janette, who politely greets Dennis as he pours her a glass of wine and gazes at her with undisguised smittenness.
Julie informs Captain Stubing that a bickering couple is trapped in an elevator 'cause they somehow shorted the wiring, and he's all, "Why the hell are you telling me this? Call the elevator repairman."
After dinner, Dennis strolls around the deck with Janette and shows her photos of his children and late wife, who he says he misses terribly 'cause they used to do everything together. Janette chews on that lovely sentiment for a few seconds before telling him that, in contrast, her dickwad of a husband was too busy working to go on this cruise with her. Dennis calls him "very foolish", then swiftly changes the subject by inviting her to join him in the nightclub for a dance...and in the next scene, the two are on the dance floor, contently swaying together.
Susan is blubbering again about being jilted by Jerry, and She-Dale assures her she'll soon find someone else...then gives her a comforting hug before asking why in blazes she appears to be naked under the bedsheet. Susan explains that she didn't pack much in the way of sleepwear 'cause she thought she'd be on her honeymoon, and She-Dale moans hornily and says s(he)'s going to need a cold shower pronto.
Maurice and Stella are still stuck in the elevator, bickering about divorcing, splitting their assets, and deciding who gets custody of their kids...blah blah. My brain tuned out until the repairman finally arrives on the scene, fixes the wiring, and is able to open the elevator doors. By this time, Maurice and Stella have taken a break from bickering and are in mid-smooch...and when they realize that Captain Stubing and the repairman are standing in front of the elevator, gawking at them, Maurice presses the close button so that he and his wife can continue their smoochfest in private.
Dennis exits the gift shop and shows Janette the Hemingway book he just bought, says it's his favorite, and give it to her as a gift. She squeals, "Ooooh! I love A Moveable Feast!" and thanks him for the sweet gesture.
Dale covertly spies on Joanne as she suns herself on a lounger beside her new boyfriend...and when the boyfriend excuses himself to go make a phone call, Dale rushes over, professes his love for her, and pleads with her to resume their hookup. Joanne groans in annoyance, says she doesn't love him, never loved him, and that she wants him to permanently get lost so she can focus on her new rich boyfriend and his Mercedes.
Janette and Dennis continue to enjoy each other's company by playing a wholesome game of backgammon. Ho hum.
Dale is about to end it all by leaping overboard - hurray! - when he notices that Susan is about to do the same thing. He rushes over to where she's about to jump and tells her that no guy is worth committing suicide over...and Susan mulls that over and decides 'yep, he's probably right'. As Dale tries to help her climb back over the railing, he loses his grip and somehow they both slip and plunge overboard. Fortunately for them, the man overboard! alarm is immediately raised, and a team of rescuers immediately get into action scooping the two idiots out of the ocean.
Dale and Susan are in her cabin, wrapped up in blankets as they drink tea and cackle about their near death experience. When Dale invites her to have dinner with him this evening, she says she promised her mannish cabin-mate she'd dine with her...then adds that she kinda feels obligated to hang out with her on account of how unsightly she must be to the opposite sex. Dale says he totally understands, then suggests they meet up at the nightclub after dinner.
Over dinner, Susan tells She-Dale about the gorgeous passenger who saved her from her half-hearted suicide attempt...then blushingly says she'd totally be into tapping that. She-Dale perks up at that sexy admission...and when Susan asks him if (s)he'd mind finding somewhere else to sleep tonight, (s)he bobs her/his head enthusiastically.
As a completely oblivious Susan rushes off to meet Dale at the nightclub, She-Dale happens to encounter Captain Stubing, who flirtily insists on getting to know her better and forcibly steers her into his private quarters. Yeesh. Easy there, Cap'n. Susan, meanwhile, gets impatient while waiting for Dale to show up at the nightclub and asks Julie if she could please look up his cabin number...and Julie says that since violating passengers' privacy is the general policy on this ship, she'd be more than happy to provide that service.
Dennis is dancing cheek to cheek with Janette, lamenting about how quickly the days are passing. He gazes into her lovely eyes and leans in for a kiss - but Janette gently rebuffs him and says she really doesn't want to deceive her husband, douchebag though he is, 'cause she prizes trust and respect above all else. She then gives him a quick peck before rushing out of the nightclub.
Captain Stubing moans to She-Dale that life at sea can get so lonely that eventually a hairy man in drag starts looking good to him...and She-Dale manages to wriggle out of the Captain's amorous embrace, promises to meet up with him tomorrow, and beats a hasty retreat. When he reaches the linen closet to revert back to his manself, he's all, "Ack!" when he realizes that someone has stolen his shirt and pants.
Julie tells Susan that she checked the passenger list and couldn't find anyone by the name of Dale Reinhardt, and Susan throws a fit and screeches about how men always lie, then storms out of the nightclub. She runs into She-Dale and tearfully explains that she was just stood up by Dale...and She-Dale's like, "Uh, about that.." and says there's something s(he) needs to reveal to her asap. Once the the two reach their cabin, we hear a startled sounding Susan say, "Dale..?" then purr, "Ooooh, Dale.."
The next morning, Janette asks Julie if she happens to know where Dennis went off to, and Julie tells her he went ashore during the ship's last stop so he could fly back to Los Angeles a day early.
Dale tells Gopher he wants to book two tickets on a future cruise for Mr. and Mrs. Reinhardt - just as Captain Stubing comes over, gives Dale a once over, and tells him he didn't recall seeing him during the cruise...then remarks on how there's something oddly familiar about him. Dale says he saw plenty of him as he flirted with a mannish redhead by the linen closet, then squeaks, "Bye!" in his She-Dale voice...causing Captain Stubing to stare bewilderedly after him and mutter, "Noooo...it couldn't be" even though, yes Captain, it be.
When the ship docks in Los Angeles, a cheery looking Maurice and Stella thank Julie for a wonderful cruise, and cackle about how being trapped in an elevator for hours was the highlight of their dull-as-fuck storyline.
Dennis rushes aboard the ship, finds Janette, and hands her his business card as he confesses that her shitty husband hired him to follow her around to get proof of her infidelity. He explains that he flew back to Los Angeles early so he could give her a glowing review to Lucas, and also give him his money back. He then declares, "I love you", and that he'd be more than happy to wait around for how ever long it takes her to divorce the shithead. Janette mulls that over as she saunters off the ship and to where Lucas is waiting by his car. When he asks her how the cruise went, she hands him Dennis's business card and says, "I met your man" ... and a shame-faced Lucas suggests they go home and talk things out. Janette says it's pretty clear that they no longer have anything to talk about, then says he actually did her a favor. She informs him that she's checking into a hotel pending the filing of their divorce, and he just kind of shrugs and goes, "Uh, OK. See ya." Janette hails the next available taxi, which just happens to have a hopeful looking Dennis sitting in the back seat. He offers to give her a lift, and she grins back at him and says that, yep, she could definitely use one, then climbs into the back seat beside him.
"Captain & the Lady / Centerfold / One If by Land.."
Original airdate: 9/24/1977
Episode summary: Captain Stubing is tormented by his bitchy ex-wife, who's now married to one of the ship's line directors. A young lawyer tries to keep her congressman fiancé from finding out that she once posed nude in Kitten. A buffoonish exterminator urges his girlfriend to give up on the idea of marriage.
Recap: Julie chirps to Gopher in what will become her trademark I'm-so-perky-I-could-burst! manner about what a grrrrrreat day it is - just as a cranky Captain Stubing stumbles onto the set and snarks at Gopher to get a haircut. Once he's safely out of earshot, Julie tells Gopher she thinks she might have an idea who shit in their boss's Cornflakes, then informs him that this week's passenger list includes Aubrey Skogstad, aka one of the directors of the ship's line, along with his cunty wife Stacy. As the passengers begin to stream aboard, Julie and Gopher soon come face-to-face with the Skogstads. They politely welcome the couple aboard and lay it on thick about their availability 24/7 to cater to their every whim, and Stacy responds by mockingly referring to Gopher as "an obsequious runt" and ordering Julie to report to her cabin in an hour. She snidely adds, "You can leave the Shirley Temple routine outside", and Julie somehow refrains from telling her up which orifice she can shove her surly bitchitude.
Ronald Baker pulls up to Port Pacific Princess in his rickety van labelled Hired Killer: Exterminator To the Stars and bellows after his girlfriend Ginny to not board the ship. She ignores him and races aboard, checks in with Gopher, and quickly finds her assigned cabin. Ronald boards the ship and screeches at no one in particular, "Don't let her stay on the boat! She's got bugs!" while Ginny meets her shapely, tube top clad cabin-mate, Lorraine.
Gopher sharply asks Ronald if he's a passenger, and Ronald says no, but that he's looking for a passenger named Ginny O'Brien. Gopher says he can't help him and orders him off the ship 'cause they're about to set sail, so Ronald wanks him about how a man of his [wee] stature could surely help him out, then calls him Captain. Gopher blushes girlishly while repeating, "Captain..", then decides he likes the sound of that enough to compromise Ginny's privacy and reveal her cabin number. After Ronald scampers off, Captain Stubing ambles over and wryly asks, "How is everything, Captain?", and Gopher says that everything is ship-shape - before cluing in that he's in the presence of the actual Captain. He nervously natters incoherently before retreating to his post.
Lorraine tells Ginny she hopes she won't mind getting lost for while if she wants to "entertain" a gentleman friend in the cabin, then says she'd be happy to return the favor. Ronald suddenly bursts into the cabin yelling, "Shazam!", gives Ginny a long forcible smooch, and reminds her that they've been living together happily ever after for two years. Ginny says she's dunzo with their relationship 'cause of what an immature, irresponsible, commitment-phobic assclown he is...and Ronald concurs that, nope, he's definitely not interested in getting married - but points out that his extermination business is listed in the Yellow Pages, which in his mind makes him a mature, responsible non-assclown. An exasperated Ginny shrieks, "Bug off!" and shoves him out of the cabin.
Sandy asks Julie if there's a newsstand on the ship, then says she could sure use a new friend with whom she can share a deep dark secret. Julie naturally says she's game, so Sandy points over at her fiancé, Congressman Brad Brockway, and sheepishly admits that a number of years ago, she posed nude for a magazine called Kitten - LOL, meow! - and now that she's engaged to the prominent politician, the photos have suddenly resurfaced. She tells Julie she booked this cruise as a way of getting Brad away from all media, and Julie puts her concerned face on and informs Sandy that the ship carries Kitten in its gift shop...'cause I guess they like to offer some rare R-rated enjoyment to their less wholesome passengers.
Captain Stubing barks, "Come in!" when Julie knocks on his office door, then chides her for being "so saccharine" and making him feel as though he's watching a Shirley Temple movie. Julie wonders aloud what everyone has against Shirley Temple, then tells the Captain she just dropped by to inform him that one of the cruise line directors is a passenger this episode. She mumblingly adds that she invited him and his wife to dine at his table this evening - and Captain Stubing interrupts and correctly guesses that Mrs. Skogstad snidely told her she'd be delighted to dine at the Captain's table, just so long as the Captain eats elsewhere.
That evening, Captain Stubing arrives at his table and greets the passengers seated there. He tells Stacy he got her message - but decided to ignore it, given that as Captain he's entitled to sit at the Captain's table. Stacy calls him a bozo, makes it clear that he's not welcome to dine in her presence, and says her husband's "muscle" as a line director outranks his piddly Captain title. Captain Stubing chews on that insult for a few seconds, then politely informs the other dinner guests he has important duties on the bridge he needs to attend to. As he slinks out of the dining room, Julie, Gopher, and Doc express their amazement that their boss managed to keep his temper in check throughout the humiliating encounter...and the camera pans over to the deck, where Captain Stubing shrieks in frustration at the night sky, causing a couple canoodling nearby to become so startled by the unexpected outburst that they both lose their footing and fall into the swimming pool. Womp womp!
The next morning, Julie drops by Sandy's cabin to deliver all of the available copies of Kitten that were for sale in the gift shop, then asks her why in blazes she debased herself by posing for a nudie rag called Kitten. Sandy sheepishly explains that she did it to pay for her law school tuition...and that she wore a wig, used a phoney name, and prayed that no one would ever find out. When she wails, "I can't lose Brad over this!", Julie points out that he'll likely find out sooner or later...and Sandy replies, "Better later than sooner." She then freaks out anew when Julie informs her that three copies of Kitten were sold to three randy male passengers before she had a chance to scoop them all up.
Stacy Skogstad is railing at a beleaguered looking Gopher about the incompetent clusterfuckery that is the management of this cruise ship, and he mumbles defensive one-liners in response.
Ginny and Lorraine return from a day of shopping in Puerto Vallarta when a poncho clad Ronald leaps out of nowhere and bellows, "Buenos dios, mama!" and tells Ginny he drove all the way from Los Angeles to Puerto Vallarta so he could continue making an ass of himself during her vacay. Ginny looks touched and dreamily says she's soooo looking forward to telling their children that daddy loved her so much he drove all the way to Mexico to propose to her...and Ronald scrunches his face in a demented look of horror as he repeats, "Children..? Daddy..?" then howls, "Check please!" Ginny's all, "Wuh? You mean you didn't drive all the way here to propose?", and he's like, "Uh, no" but says he's willing to propose that they continue living together. Ginny complains that she's getting tired of her low level girlfriend status, and the way his mother is always giving her dirty looks...and Ronald adds insult to injury when he informs her that his mother doesn't even know they're living together. Ginny lets out an angry growl and storms away in disgust.
Doc gives Captain Stubing some pills to quell his stomach pains, and Captain Stubing grumbles about how the crew probably enjoys seeing him so miserable from all the hell Mrs. Skogstad is putting him through. Doc denies that any crew member is getting any pleasure out of his misery, then points out that it makes zero sense for a perfect stranger, aka Stacy Skogstad, to want to make him so miserable. Captain Stubing wryly confesses that she's not perfect nor a stranger, then fills him in on the truth: he was married to the woman for seventeen years. He stares dreamily into space as he reminisces about how in love they were in the very beginning - but that it all went to shit when he took a mistress, aka 'the sea'. Stacy resented him for being away all the time, and he admits that eventually he had no room in his life for both her and the sea. Plus, Stacy absolutely hated her married name: Stacy Stubing. Though she is somehow able to tolerate being called Stacy Skogstad.
Sandy has launched Operation Find Circulating Copies of Kitten and finds a man ogling her centerfold while lounging by the pool. She walks by and "accidentally" spills her drink all over him...and during the chaos that ensues, rips out the center pages of the naughty magazine.
Lorraine is decked out in skimpwear as she struts over to where Ginny is sitting and asks her if she'd like to paint the town with her this evening. Ginny mopishly says she'd rather stay in and keep her fingers crossed that Ronald makes it to Cabo San Lucas (where the ship is currently docked), 'cause she figures that he'll be so exhausted it'll be easy to talk him into getting married. Lorraine makes a blech face and asks her why in the unfathomable fuck she'd want to be shackled in matrimony to such an imbecile, so Ginny lists her reasons:
Sandy spots a portly man on the deck reading Kitten while puffing on a cigarette, so she pulls a cigarette from her purse and asks the man for a light. When he idly hands over his lighter, she sets the edge of the magazine ablaze before beating a hasty retreat...and a few seconds later, the man's all, "Ack!" and throws the burning magazine overboard. A few seconds later, Sandy runs into Julie to update her on the status of Operation Find Circulating Copies of Kitten, and Julie informs her that Doc has the remaining copy. Sandy's like, "I suddenly have a cold!" and heads over to the infirmary stat! She spots the magazine in the exam room...and as Doc is retrieving his stethoscope, she fake coughs to cover up the sound of her ripping out the centerfold. Doc checks her heart rate, feels her forehead and diagnoses her with acute embarrassment caused by overexposure. He then confirms that, yep, he got a good gander of her naughties in Kitten, but that since she looks pretty damn smokin' in the raw, she has absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. Sandy says she's more concerned about what her congressman fiancé will think, so he points out that it's best to be totally honest with the man she intends to marry.
Lorraine finds Ginny sunning herself above deck and gushes about the awesome day she spent in Cabo San Lucas, dancing with a hottie named Paco. A few seconds later, a small boat with Ronald aboard speeds over to the ship so he can screech at Ginny about how much he loves and misses her. She screeches back, "Will you marry me?" and he replies, "I cannot heeeeear you!", then says she'll never be able to find another man who digs her as much as he does. Ginny cries, "I want your name!", so he quips, "OK, I'll call you Ronald", and she rolls her eyes in dismay and yells back, "Adios muchacho!"
Sandy drops by Brad's cabin to come clean about posing nude, and he opens his briefcase and pulls out a copy of Kitten. He says he kinda digs the fact that he's about to be married to a woman who other men can only ever jerk off to, and points out that "a guy named Carter confessed his lust in Playboy and he got to be president", and is therefore not remotely concerned that her past indiscretion will cost him votes with his constituents. Hurray!
Lorraine tells Ginny she'd like them to spend the evening in the ship's bar, guzzling alcohol and enjoying the company of men. When she orders a bottle of bourbon, a skittish looking Ginny says she's not much of a drinker or a flirter...but then throws back a shot of bourbon and decides she's up for a night of debauchery after all. Over the course of the evening, she and Lorraine hit the dance floor, hold court with a group of male admirers, and eventually exit the bar via a conga line.
Stacy Skogstad imperiously orders Julie to provide her with the ship's entertainment schedule, payment records, and supply lists - and Julie perkily says she'd be more than happy to accommodate her, then raves about how conscientious Captain Stubing is when it comes to administrative details. When she waxes on about how utterly marvellous he is, Stacy rolls her eyes and grumbles, "You've been drinking on duty."
Isaac remarks to Gopher, Julie, and Doc on the muteness of Aubrey Skogstad while his wife flaps around the ship, treating everyone like shit - most notably, Captain Stubing. Doc says he prolly shouldn't be spreading gossip about the Captain's personal life, but then decides 'ah fuck it, it's only my job at stake' and reveals that Captain Stubing used to be married to Stacy Skogstad...and adds that no way in heck would he allow a woman to push him around - just as Stacy bursts into the room and demands to see Doc's supply requisition. He meekly says, "Yes ma'am, right away, ma'am" while the rest of the crew gets out of her orbit, pronto.
A hungover Ginny tells Lorraine she had fun last night, but is bummed that Ronald didn't show up in Ensenada to profess his love for her a fourth time...and in the next scene, we see that Ronald's bug van got a flat tire, and he's miffed when a man riding by on a donkey doesn't stop to help.
Captain Stubing arrives at his table, where Stacy and her husband are once again seated. Stacy tells the Captain that she's going to continue to keep up the pressure on him, and he's like, "Pressure? What pressure?" so she remarks on how lame it is that he leaves it to his crew to defend him against her insults. She bitchily adds that she can't imagine why they admire him so much...and Captain Stubing looks startled by the revelation and hastily excuses himself from the table.
Captain Stubing quietly eavesdrops on the crew as they grumble to each other about how miserable Stacy Skogstad is making their lives this episode, and that they're neglecting the other passengers as a result. Gopher bitterly jokes that someone should appoint Stacy as Captain so she can hire the crew she wants...and Captain Stubing contorts his face into a stern enough is enough expression and marches back to the dining room, where he grabs Stacy by the arm and forcibly ushers her above deck. A bewildered Aubrey gets up from the table and toddles behind them. Captain Stubing firmly tells Stacy that he's no longer tolerating her abuse of his crew, then banishes her to her room for the rest of the evening. Stacy's all, "Wha-a-a?!" and whirls around to haughtily ask her husband if he's going to stand for this disrespect...and Aubrey, who up until this point in the episode has been mutely sucking on his pipe, puts his wife in her place by barking, "Go to your room!" Stacy gasps in shock before meekly obeying, and Aubrey winks at Captain Stubing and compliments him on being a great captain.
When the ship returns to Los Angeles the following morning, Ginny bids Lorraine adieu and thanks her for being such a fun cabin-mate. Lorraine waves goodbye, then turns her attention to her two little daughters, who come running over.
Sandy and Brad thank Julie for all of her help with Kitten-gate, and Doc tells Sandy he's delighted to hear that the wedding is still on course.
Ronald presents Ginny with a bouquet of roses and suggests she use them as part of her bridal bouquet, which is his way of telling her that he's finally ready to give marriage a try. Ginny's like, "Uh, about that.." then tells him she's now A-OK with them just living together, then explains that the last two nights aboard The Love Boat abruptly changed her mind. Ronald woots happily and thanks God - before digesting the last part of what she said and suspiciously asks her what happened during those two nights. Ginny says she simply realized how much she enjoys her freedom, aka the way he enjoys his freedom...and he yelps, "No way!" and insists that they get married asap, and a smiling Ginny says they can discuss this further at home.
Captain Stubing finds Stacy milling around in the gift shop and asks her if he might have a word with her so they can part on civil terms. He apologizes for being so harsh last night, and also for the greater sin of ruining their marriage. He tells her she deserved a better husband, and admits that he wanted to command ships far more than he wanted to make her happy. Stacy acknowledges that life with her was probably not much of a picnic - which...no duh - then reports that she couldn't find one important thing wrong with his ship and calls him one helluva commander. Captain Stubing thanks her for the glowing review and says he hopes she's happily married to her mute, and she says that while she loves the fact that Aubrey is home most of the time, she can't help but dislike his horrific last name. Captain Stubing smoothly pronounces her hard-to-pronounce name, and Stacy smiles and drawls, "Lawd, I loooove a silver-tongued man" and warmly says goodbye. A few seconds later, Captain Stubing is summoned to the bridge, and in response he happily scampers up the stairwell.
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