01x21 - The Age of Darkness

[Alarm blaring]

Adult Adam: There's only one reason a teenage girl leaps out of bed this happy on a school day... first love.

For my sister, it was our neighbor across the street...

Drew Kremp.

And, man, oh, man, things got real serious real fast.

Listen, I know we've only been dating for a few weeks, but there's something I've got to ask you.

Huh?

Erica Elizabeth Goldberg, will you...

My middle name's Dorothy, but that... that's okay.

Uh, whatever you're gonna say, just say it.

Will you wear my varsity jacket?

[Laughs] Yes! Yes, I will!

The varsity jacket... the high-school equivalent of a marriage proposal.

It's like a slipper... like a glass slipper, but it's not!

It's a jacket!

My moody, angry sister had somehow been replaced by a giddy, love-struck teenager.

Mmm! Mom, so good.

I don't say this enough, but I love tacos.

And I love my family.

We called it the time of great peace.

For some, it was confusing.

I think she's on drugs.

A-are you hopped up on goofballs?

You're the cutest!

We've all been there.

It's the happiest time in a young person's life.

Your head's in the clouds, and nothing will bring you down...

[Horns blaring]

Oh. Sorry! Have a great day.

[Sobbing]

Except when your first love dumps your ass for no reason at all.

Boopie, what's wrong? What is it?

Come, sit. Tell mama.

[Whining indistinctly]

What are you saying?

[Whining]

Are you physically hurt?

Did someone drop something on you?

And then... and then... and then...

I can't understand you.

[Sobbing]

She said Drew Kremp drove her home today in his sweet Mustang and dumped her out of nowhere.

[Whining]

How the hell did you understand her?

As most of you know, I've, uh, spent a majority of my life hysterical and emotionally out of control.

I speak the language.

[Whimpering]

She'd like some hot tea with a little bit of honey.

And with that, the time of great peace descended into the age of darkness.

My strong, independent sister turned into an irrational hot mess.

She moped in her room.

She sobbed in her car.

[Horns blaring]

And she wept through dinner.

Sweetie, you have to eat.

Food reminds me of Drew.

He used to eat food.

Baby, if you don't eat, then I have failed as a mother.

Then you have failed. We all have failed.

Just take them! Just take the tots!

Peanut, believe me, it's his loss.

I am dead inside, and that's what you say to me?

She said she's dead inside...

I know what she said!

♪ I'm twisted up inside ♪
♪ but nonetheless I feel the need to say ♪
♪ I don't know the future ♪
♪ but the past keeps getting clearer every day ♪

It was April 29, 1980-something, and Barry and I were strolling into the one place that gave us pure joy like no other.

That's right... the arcade.

We're home.

Al: Here you go, boys.

Have fun with your beep-bop-boop.

Back then, you couldn't just download a game to your phone.

You needed a roll of quarters and nerves of steel.

First we'd play the classics like "Pac-Man" and "Centipede."

Then we'd blow most of our quarters on "Dragon's Lair."

How'd they get a cartoon into a video game?

You're so dumb. They pour it in the top.

But our jam was "Zaxxon."

It was the greatest game ever made...

Until they made a better one.

[Bell clanging]

It was called "Punch-Out!!"

It combined everything my brother loved...

Video games, sports, and graphic, senseless violence.

We're gonna get to know each other real good.

While we were lost in our world of video games, my mom was gonna help Erica get clarity on the break-up.

She went across the street to Virginia Kremp, her best friend and Drew's mother.

Hi!

Hi.

Hi.

Hi.

Hi.

Hi.

How's Erica holding up?

Ugh, she's a mess.

How's Drew?

He's great.

Hmm?

I mean, you know, he's good. He's... he's fine.

He just went to the water park, which is...

Where he goes when he's sad.

That way no one can see his tears.

You know, it would really help Erica if you could just tell me what happened.

Ooh, I'm not sure that's our business, Bev.

Isn't it, though?

Hmm...

Mm. Mmm...

Mmm?

Mnh-mnh.

I just think that Drew needs some time alone to figure himself out.

Well, do you think he'll have himself figured out in the next two days or so?

Probably not.

Oh, just one more quick question...

Uh, what is the name of Drew's new bimbo?

Beverly, there's no one.

So you're saying that Drew's made a terrible mistake, and it's just gonna be a matter of time before he comes crawling back?

Hmm...

Mm?

Mnh-mnh.

Uh...

Mnh-mnh.

Well, you better tell Drew not to take too long to figure things out 'cause, uh, Erica's got a lot of guys coming around.

Lot of guys.

And one girl.

[Chuckles]

She's not gonna do anything about that, but, uh... still flattering.

Think about it.

Barry had spent the past week trying to beat "Punch-Out!!"

Just one problem...

He was out of quarters and had grown desperate.

A penny?

Worthless! It's the garbage of money!

[Penny clatters]

Hey! Pops-aroni, looking good.

Did you lose some weight or just get a haircut?

Oh, what can I say?

I've been hit by the handsome stick.

Well, you look like a million bucks.

Speaking of a million bucks, can you float me a $20?

Is this for the arcade again?

This is the fourth time this week.

I got to cut you off, kiddo.

You can't cut me off. You're my grandfather!

You're supposed to give me unconditional love and money until you pass!

I got three chicks on the string right now.

I got to manage my cash flow.

Be selfish. I'll find money somewhere else.

Hey, Ad-Rock!

What do you say we go down to the arcade?

It'll only cost you $20.

Sorry, I got a spelling test tomorrow.

Why are you being such a [Bleep] [Bleep]?

Whoa, whoa, whoa!

Easy! Easy! Easy!

Sorry.

Lost my cool.

I'm fine.

Okay. I got money.

I'll just cash in the $100 bond you gave me last year.

That doesn't mature for another 10 years.

It's hardly worth anything right now.

You're a filthy liar, old man!

Nope.

I did it again. Lost my cool.

I'm just... constantly thinking about that game.

You know what I'm saying?

It's cool.

It's cool. It's cool.

[Sighs] What are you guys watching?

I'm gonna go take a walk. I'm gonna go take a walk.

Hey, Dale.

Guess who cashed in his $100 bond and is now sitting on 6 bucks of cold, hard change.

I don't care.

[Sighs]

[Sighs]

That's the stuff.

Figuring himself out? What does that even mean?

It means it's not you. It's him.

Please.

That's what people always say, and it's total bullcrap.

Please believe me.

You're tearing me apart. I can't see you this sad.

Just tell me you're better.

I'm not better.

My mood ring's been black for three days!

Then fake it... for me.

I wore my nightgown to school today.

I'm in agony. I can't take it anymore.

Wow. Way to make it about you, mom.

No, no, no. This is not about me.

It's about you feeling better so I can feel better.

Make me feel better.

Better?

All I know is that I can't feel any worse.

[Tires screeching]

[Gasps] Are you kidding me?!

Shame on you, Virginia Kremp!

You told me there was nobody else!

Right to my face, you told me!

Oh, my God! Tracy Sullivan?!

Are you freaking kidding me?!

When I asked you if you thought she was pretty, you said, "nah."

You said, "nah"!

He was just trying to spare her.

I didn't want you to find out this way.

So that's what you meant when you...

I live across the street from you!

You said he needed to figure himself out?!

You didn't think I'd figure it out?!

I was just trying to spare your feelings!

He was just trying to spare her feelings!

Well, here's your stupid varsity jacket back!

Use it to cover up Tracy's stupid face!

Yeah!

Sorry, Tracy, I know this isn't about you.

Yeah!

I can't believe that this is happening.

Nope. Put those tissues down, missy.

I'm gonna fix this. You know how?

Mama's gonna find you someone better.

That's right.

There are plenty of other fish in the sea.

[Hisses]

I'll go.

Erica had gone through six pans of brownies since the break-up.

Fortunately, my dad stepped in to help with words of wisdom.

Hey, peanut.

Uh, I'm gonna shut this off.

[Grunts]

Look, every time I try and cheer you up, I end up saying the wrong thing.

[Grunts]

So this time I'm not gonna say anything.

I'm gonna let an old friend do the talking for me.

Sting!

"If you love somebody, set them free."

Wise words, don't you think?

You know what I think?

What are you doing? Why would you do that?! Who does that?!

Murray, what are you doing? Why are you in here?

I had good intentions! I went to my guy at Sam goody.

His name is Randy, and he's getting over someone, too.

She's a wild animal.

Don't help! Get!

He's right.

Look at me. I'm an animal.

[Garbled] I'm an animal.

Stop that.

But...

Stop it!

Lainey's birthday is tonight, and, damn it, you're going.

No way.

Lainey's your best friend.

Well, lainey's also friends with Tracy, which means that Drew will be there.

Even better. And you want to know why?

They are gonna freak when you walk into that restaurant with a college guy.

What college guy?

I was at Dr. Kaczander's office earlier, and it seems his son, Bruce, is single and ready to mingle.

I am not going out with your podiatrist's son named Bruce.

He goes to penn, he's a classics major, and he drives a way cooler car than Drew.

Cooler than a Mustang 5.0?

Yes. A Saab.

A Saab? What the hell is that?

It's Swedish. It's sporty.

It's got a key in the middle, next to the armrest.

It's like a spaceship.

Drew is gonna see you with that college hunk, go crazy with jealousy, and regret treating you this way.

And with that, Beverly Goldberg's matchmaking skills saved the day. Amazingly, Bruce, the podiatrist's son, was an uncanny mix of Patrick Swayze and Patrick Dempsey. Not even Drew Kremp could deny it.


Hi. This is Bruce.

He's in college. Look at him.

You... can sit next to me.

Scoot. Scoot. Down.

You must be Lainey.

Yes.

I brought you a little something for your birthday.

It's my favorite sake.

He has a favorite sake, yeah, and he drives a Saab.

As Erica's surprise for Drew was paying off, pops and I had a surprise of our own for Barry.

Hey.

Barry, please have a seat.

What's going on?

Well, w... we're all here because we love you and we care about you and we want to see you get better.

It's an intervention.

We invited all your friends over to tell you how we feel.

But only Roger's here.

I was the 10th person they called.

Shut up, Roger.

Hmm.

[Sighs]

Listen, you've been spending way too much time at the arcade.

You're on edge.

You've been neglecting your schoolwork.

You stopped showering.

Who showers every day?!

What am I, the governor?! This is ridiculous!

I don't have the problem. You have the problem.

What problem do we have?

You're addicted to being jerks!

I can quit the arcade any time I want.

Barry, you're scrounging around for quarters right now.

No, I'm not.

I was looking for this fork.

'Cause I'm gonna eat coleslaw.

Does that mean I'm addicted to coleslaw, too?

I don't know. I don't care anymore.

This whole thing's gotten very weird.

Barry, please. You cashed in your bonds.

You emptied your piggy bank. You sold your baseball cards.

This arcade's eating you alive.

We care about you, dude.

We want you around for a long time.

Roger! Go!

Maybe you're right.

Maybe I do have a problem.

There you go.

Just know we're always here for you.

We love you, kiddo.

I won't let you down.

But he did.

And the first place Barry went...

My room, in search of pocket change.

Something. Just something.

But what he found was way more valuable.

How much will you give me for this?

Three bucks.

What?

I stole it from my brother. He said it's priceless.

Oh, it's hot. Sorry, I'm not interested.

Dude, what kind of weird, honest pawn shop is this?

The grown-up kind that sells things that grown-ups want...

Like engagement rings and guns.

Come on. 10 bucks.

Some nerd will pay top dollar for this.

Really? No landing gear.

The gun turret's cracked. And no radar disc.

How would this thing ever do the kessel run in 12 parsecs?

I don't know what any of that means, okay?

Just give me a few quarters, and I'll go away.

As Barry pawned away the last shred of his dignity, Erica's date was really starting to sizzle.

Would anyone like a refill on their soda?

It's actually my 21st birthday.

So how about mai-tais all ound?

Well, the balloon says you're 17, so how about no?

Well, I'm not 17.

Eight mai-tais, please. All for me.

It's been a tough week.

Yeah, college is really 'cause he's in college.

Now, who wants sake?

No, thanks. I don't drink.

Whoa. Who brought the wet blanket?

[Laughter]

No, I don't drink when there's a table of cops next to us.

There's what now?

I don't even know this girl, all right?

My dad is her mom's podiatrist!

The only reason I agreed to go out with her is 'cause he said I could use his Saab!

Well, that's a real sob story, am I right?

[Both laugh]

You're such an ass, Drew.

I love you.

What?

Nothing.

Meanwhile, at the arcade, Barry was jonesing to beat "Punch-Out!!"

Unfortunately, it was beating him.

Focus, Barry! Focus!

Beat it, Lyle. You're bad luck.

[Crowd cheering]

This was it... the last quarter.

One final shot at glory.

What happened next was legendary.

Yes! Yes!

That single quarter lasted Barry 20 minutes.

Go! Let's go!

He was a man possessed, knocking out Glass Joe, Bald Bull, Pizza Pasta.

There was no one who could take my brother down.

Yes! Yes! Yes!

No one except...

[Machine powers down]

No!

Me.

What did you do?!

What did you do?! My Millennium Falcon's gone.

Did you really think whai wouldn't notice?!

Kind of.

Why didn't you sell something of yours, like your signed Moses Malone Jersey?

Dude, I could never sell that.

I'd miss it too much.

You know what, even with all the crap you do, I still look up to you.

Not anymore.

Adam, wait.

It was game over for my brother.

He'd hit rock bottom and finally ran out of options...

And quarters.

After watching her date get arrested, Erica had to call home for a ride.

Murray: There you are.

Your mom and I couldn't decide who you'd be more annoyed to see.

We talked about it for a while, and here I am.

Good.

'Cause I don't ever want to talk to her again.

Stupid, beautiful podiatrist's son.

Your mom means well.

Man: Hey!

[Grill sizzles]

Um, we're not gonna be eating anything.

Thank you. Yeah.

But the thing is...

If you're gonna say another lame dad cliché, I will literally press your face against this hot, sizzling grill.

No, no, I believe you. But I really want you to hear this.

Hey! Hey!

Hey, um, listen, you don't understand.

I'm trying to talk to my...

Is that shrimp?

Hey!

All right, you know what, I'd love some shrimp, but keep the schtick down.

Hey!

So, when I was your age, my first girlfriend dumped me out of the blue.

I spent the whole summer with the shades drawn, eating zagnut bars, and watching old horror movies.

I was miserable and heartbroken.

[Imitating heart pounding]

Hey, knock it off.

The point is that I know there's no easy fix here, but all you need is time.

How much time?

I don't know.

But I promise you that one day you're gonna wake up, and it just won't hurt as much.

I hope so.

Thanks, daddy.

Really? I helped you?!

Yeah, I am just as surprised as you are.

Well, you're gonna be just fine.

You are. And just remember...

It's getting kind of loud, all right?

It's still... it's not, uh... I don't think he understands.

Little did we know Erica wasn't the only one ready to accept some help.

Hi.

My name is Barry Norman Goldberg.

I'm addicted to arcade games.

We don't want to hear it.

Hey, cut him some slack, kiddo.

The first step is admitting you got a problem.

And I think I can help you.

[Huey Lewis and the News' "The power of love" plays]

There you go.

What the hell is that for?

You love that boxing game, right?

Why not try the real thing?

I don't know, pops.

It's not the same.

Save you a lot of quarters.

♪ Make another man sing ♪

Huh! Huh!

♪ Change a hawk to a little white dove ♪

[Grunting]

♪ Power of love that keeps you home at night ♪

I certainly don't look bad doing this.

♪ Don't take fame ♪

What just happened?

The trick with any addiction is replacing it with a healthy alternative.

That's the thing about family...

No matter what, they're always there for you.

I know this may sound crazy, but I'm pretty sure I'm gonna become champion of the world.

Even when you're at your worst.

♪ That's the power of love ♪

Well, how'd it go? Was she mad? How mad was she?

Does she hate her mama?

Huh, relax. I think she's starting to feel better.

This feels right!

No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no!

[Laughs]

Erica, stop.

Really?

What? She's healing.

What is going on?!

The wind!

Both: We'll write you a check.

♪ It's strong and it's sudden ♪
♪ it can be cruel sometimes ♪

sometimes you need them to bail you out.

And sometimes you need them to not say a thing.

They just need to be there.

♪ You feel the power of love ♪

Turns out my dad was right.

[Alarm blaring] ♪ can you feel it? ♪

All Erica needed was a little time.

One day, she woke up and it just didn't hurt anymore.

That's the great thing about first loves.

They're not the last.

And just like that... the age of darkness was over.

As for Barry, he went from scrounging for change to making some changes.

I want to buy that spaceship back.

$50.

[Groans]

I was afraid this might happen.

How much will you give me for this signed Moses Malone Jersey?

My Falcon! You got it back?!

Dude! Get off me!

If you touch my torso again, I will smash your spaceship with my hands.

[Imitating blasters firing]

Hey, Chewbacca!

Yo, nerd!

Every Rocky needs his Mickey. Come train me.

Come on.

Sure, I got my Millennium Falcon back, ♪ and it's cruel sometimes ♪

But more importantly...

Barry was back to being Barry.

And this game of "Punch-Out!!" beat every arcade in town.

♪ That's the power of love ♪

Aah! Whoo!

Man: I'm filming now.

[Ding!]

The ultimate in four-wheel drive.

[Ding!]

[Laughs]

Ginny, I think it's a good thing that Drew and Erica didn't work out, you know?

The last thing we need is their relationship to come between us, you know?

Totally.

Can I tell you something, but you have to promise not to tell another soul?

I would never. [Sighs]

Tracy kissed John Martino.

Drew is a mess, and now he won't even use his water-park pass.

Oh, my God.

So awful.

Are you... are you walking faster?

No, are you slowing down?

Stop... stop picking up the pace, Bev.

Stop it! [Gasps]

You are clearly going to tell Erica!

I can't hear you, you are too far behind.

You're running! You are running!

Stop running!

This is just my natural gait.