02x22 - Dance Party USA

Adult Adam: Back in the '80s, this is what cool looked like.

The makeup was as heavy as the perfume, the hair crimped and curled, and, most importantly, the shoulders bared.

Even though my sister owned the look, it was a bumpy ride to get her there.

Back in ninth grade, my sister was a giant ball of awkwardness.

Hi, Dan.


Cool clarinet. [Laughs]

Um... So, I know I've asked a few times, but did you ever figure out your plans for the winter formal?

Listen, Erica, I only like you as a lab partner.

And to be honest, e-even then, I fantasize about other lab partners, so...

But then a miracle happened.

Erica Goldberg got contact lenses, stopped shampooing with bar soap, lost her braces, and learned how to tame her rat's nest.

And just like that, my sister blossomed from awkward to awesome.

Hey. Hi, Erica.

Hey, Don.

It's, uh... it's Dan.

But you could call me Don if you like that name better.

In fact, Erica was so awesome that in one week, she would get to be on the coolest TV show proudly filmed in our hometown.

It was "Dance Party USA"...

30 minutes of fierce '80s grooving featuring the hottest girls and baddest boys in the skimpiest of belly shirts.

Holy God, look at those dance moves!

I'd do anything to tease my bangs that high.

Just think... In one week everyone in school will see us dancing under those neon lights.

We'll be regionally famous.

So, what moves you gonna bust out first?

I'm thinking I'd walk like an Egyptian right into the safety dance. Aah!

Speaking of dancing, Barry has arrived!


God, Barry.

The only thing worse than your moves is your gross eye.

It's just pink eye. Everyone gets it.

Everyone doesn't get it from a kaleidoscope they found under a bridge.

A goopy eye is well worth the colorful view of the world this baby's given me.

Honey, you're gonna give it to your other eye.


Unlike Erica, Barry was still struggling to find his awesomeness, and growing that rat tail last summer didn't really help.

This will always be awesome.

I'm so stoked to be on TV!

I want to make sure I lock down a solo platform.

That sounds like a perfect plan.

But there's only one teeny, tiny problem...

You're not coming.

Lainey, you're my girl, girl.

Talk some sense into her.

You don't want him to go?



Did everything I could.

Come on, baby.

Look in my good eye and give me one reason why?

Barry, this is going on TV.

They don't want spazzy dancing freaks who lose their mind when the lunch lady runs out of pudding.

That only happened three times!

They should know by now to fully stock the pudding!

Sweetie, you're doing it again.

Fine. I'll just... Dance it off, okay?

Watch me go.

How can you deny the world this sweet rhythmic magic, huh?

Oh, is this happening?


Get away! I'm contagious!

The only thing that's contagious are your sweet dance moves.

♪ I'm twisted up inside ♪
♪ but nonetheless I feel the need to say ♪

The Goldbergs - 02x22 Dance Party USA

♪ I don't know the future ♪
♪ but the past keeps getting clearer every day ♪

It was April 29, 1980-something, and I was about to spend the day with the most magical badass I knew... pops.

Here you go, boys.

Toad in the hole for my snuggle face, raisin bran and prune juice for the coolest and most regular daddy I know.

That's a pass on breakfast, Bev.

Me and the kid are headed out for a big day on the town.

First, tennis at the club.

And if there's time, we hit the Art Museum.

Honestly, there should be a museum for the two of you.

It will be called the Shmoopie Center For Cuteness and I will be the curator and people will line up for blocks just to delight in your deliciousness.

She just had her morning coffee. You go.

I'll stay and be a body in the room for her.

And go we did, but not to tennis or a museum, no. we headed to the South Jersey Gem known as Atlantic City. back then, it was a sketchy, degenerate wonderland where they actually let in a baby-faced boy like me...

No questions asked.

Pops' game of choice was craps. and although no human could understand it, all I knew was that as long as my grandfather had his lucky watch, the man was unstoppable.

♪ You got the touch ♪

Seven out. Seven out.

Is that bad?

Oh, not for us.

I dropped a C-note on the come at the last second, so now we're up $50.

My God, even when you lose you win.

Here you go, Al. Seafood buffet on us.

Free all-you-can-eat popcorn shrimp?

Seriously, how does this casino stay in business?

As I was living it up with my hero, Barry was beyond desperate to no longer be the crusty eyed zero.

Yo! Big "E"!

Siblings, am I right?

You can't come with us.

Just hear me out.

"Dance Party USA" is the one chance I get to show everyone at school that I'm not just a pink-eyed loser dating some girl out of his league.

They'll have to respect the guy who danced briefly on local television.

I'm begging you with all my heart.

Please do this for me.

I'm glad you came to me with this, and I really appreciate your honesty.

And now I hope you can appreciate mine.

I think you're unappealing and gross.

Barry knew no amount of begging could change Erica's mind.

What he didn't know was that pink eye is highly contagious.

[School bell rings] Aah!

What's happening on your face?

I caught Barry's gross pink eye.

I can't wear my contacts.

At all? We're supposed to be on TV in three days.

Move it, Lainey. Get to class.

Ugh. Take Mrs. Magoo with you.

Don't worry, Lainey. I'll look fine for TV.

These are just reading glasses. I don't need them to see.



How did you not see that?!

'Cause I lied! I want to dance on TV!

Walk it off, Goldberg.

As Erica was headed for an emergency dental procedure, pops and I were headed home winners.

That's another one for the record books.

Here's your taste of the action, kiddo.

Always a pleasure.

Me too, pops.

I'm just hoping one of these days, some of your awesomeness will rub off on me.

What are you talking about? You're plenty awesome.

Not like you.

Your life is a parade of money, free shrimp, and old ladies that you find hot and I find sad.

You're the luckiest guy I know. It's like magic.

Trust me, you have it in you, too.

Really? 'Cause my life hasn't been magical at all.

Even at magic camp, I was a total third-stringer.

All the magic you need is right in here.

If you just believe in yourself like I do, you can't lose.

After pops made me realize I was a winner, I tested my gambling skills at the riskiest game in town...

Finger football.

What do you say we make this interesting?

Fine. The big boys play for lunch snacks.

What did your hot mom pack for dessert today?

She is hot, dude.

Dave Kim likes an hourglass shape.

Harkens back to old Hollywood.

Shut up, Dave Kim.

And lunch snacks are adorable, but I say we play for your "Hulk" issue 181.

What are you offering?

Let me just whip out my money clip here.

How's about every series 1 garbage pail kid I got.

Big mistake, Goldberg.

The mistake is yours, bro.

♪ You got the touch ♪

This was it.

Thanks to pops, I knew I had the magic touch...

And nothing could stop my luck.

[Music stops]


Nice doing business with you.

Wait. You can't just walk away now.

Double or nothing.

I'm listening.

I bet my Megatron.

I bet all my robots.

My entire Nintendo system.

All my games.

Is my soul worth anything?

[All groan]

It's gone. It's all gone.

Walk it off, Goldberg.

And so ended the worst losing streak in finger-football history.

What are you doing sitting in the dark?

I had a terrible day.

I gambled pretty bad, and I lost.

Well, hey, that's why you always keep a spare pair of underpants in your locker.

That gem's for free.


I lost my toys to Garry Ball playing finger football.

Pops convinced me that I was lucky like him, but I'm not.

I found this guy trying to hide under my bed.

I know you're scared, starscream.

So am i.

I'm not sure what I'm watching here, but at least you learned a valuable lesson.

All gamblers eventually lose.

Not pops.

He always wins. It's like the man's magic.

Except he does lose, and there's no such thing as magic.

You do know that right?

So, you're saying my hero is just a regular old man and there really is no magic in the world?


No, no, no, no, no, no, no.

Don't listen to him.

You just continue loving pops the way you always have.

Your dad's the reason he gambled all his stuff away.

Well, then pops will fix it.

I'll take him down to the school, he'll work his magical magic, and get it all back for you.





And with that, my mom rushed off to settle my gambling debts.

19, 20.

All right. [Blows whistle]

Hit the showers.

And don't wear your underwear in there like a bunch of weirdos.


I'm kind of going through some personal stuff.

Do you have time to talk?

I'm not just your wrestling coach, Goldberg.

I'm your life coach.

Now drop and give me feelings.

Everyone in school thinks I'm a joke.

Maybe I am. I can't change that.

But being on TV is a game-changer.

I was thinking if someone taught me some sweet dance moves, maybe everyone would look past who I really am.

Why you coming to me for this?

I remember you told me you took up tap dancing to help you with your balance and flexibility.

Not true. Tap is for wuss-bags.

I took modern. It's a man's dance.

So... Maybe you can help me?

Okay, son.

I'm gonna tell you the same thing I told my ex-wife's lawyer...

You better bring everything you got.

Let's dance.

And with that, coach Mellor would train Barry to dance his way to local TV stardom. with moves this flawless, Erica and Lainey would have no choice but to look past the pink in Barry's eye and into the fire in his heart.

♪ Oh ♪
♪ After all is said and Don ♪
♪ You've never walked, you've never run ♪
♪ You're a winner ♪
♪ You're at your best when the going gets rough ♪
♪ You've been put to the test, but it's never enough ♪
♪ You got the touch ♪
♪ You got the power♪

Oh, my God, it's midnight.

Mellor: Welcome to the first midnight of the rest of your life...


'Cause I taught you to dance.

And now you will succeed at the thing you wanted...

Whatever that was.

While Barry had some new sweet moves, my mom was using some old ones on principal ball.

Thank you for agreeing to meet with me on such short notice, Earl.

You're welcome.

But technically, you just pounded on the door while I tried to hold my breath until you heard me gasp for air, then you barged right in.

Look, I know you're in a tough position being both principal and Garry's father, but something very upsetting has happened between our boys.

The finger-football fiasco. I am so sorry.

I told Garry gambling in school will never be tolerated again.

So, I'll just swing by later and pick up Adam's toys?

Oh, gosh no. Garry won them in a bet.

So they're his toys now.

But you just said gambling at school was unacceptable.


However, welching on a gentleman's wager is even worse.

That is an important life lesson for our boys to learn.

But I think the take-away here is you never bet against a ball.

Oh, is that the take-away?

We're an unusually lucky brood.

Well, why not put your money where your mouth is, ball?


You may be lucky, but when it comes to Beverly Goldberg's love of her children, she never loses.

If I win, I get Adam's things back.

If I lose, I'll stay out of your office for a week.

[Drawer opens, closes]

Mississippi Stud, Deuces and One-Eyed Jacks are wild.

I only know the... The game where you do the flippy thing with the card and the highest one wins.

You want war? You got it.


Two! Damn it! Double or nothing.


Two! Damn it!

Shall we go for a year?

How did it go, Bev? Did you strong-arm him or what?

I'll explain in the car.

I'm not allowed on school grounds for the next decade.

Hold on. Let me just go in and charm the man.

It's my thing.

Okay, fine, but listen to me very carefully.

Under no circumstances are you to play war.

What happened to your jacket?

[Bleep] That guy.

While pops and my mom needed a new plan to get back my prized possessions, Barry planned to win over Lainey with his new dance moves.

[Sneakers squeak] Oh, hello.

Barry? Uh, what are you doing?

Now finish it.

I can't believe I'm saying this, but that was kind of hot.

Welcome to the new Barry, and the new Barry's been working on his moves.


What's up, gang?



[Lisping] I know. I messed my teeth up when my face hit that locker so Doctor Chang put me in some temporary braces.

Did Doctor Chang do something to your hair, too?

Oh, no, I tried to cheer myself up with a home perm, but... I can't see good, so... Yeah.

Well, good news is the whole package kind of goes together.

[Chuckles] Yeah, you have this whole cat-lady drifter thing going on.

Shut up, will ya?

I'll totally be camera-ready by tomorrow.

Uh, in light of your recent medical issues, maybe I should just go with Barry instead?

No. Barry, you're my brother.

Talk some sense into her.

Do you want her to go like this?


I'm sorry.

I did everything I could.


I don't want to go to the stupid dance party anyway.

I'll just eat my soft foods and go, hmm?

Dang it, where's the pudding?

Sorry, we're all out. Got some pears, though.

I don't want a pear. I want chocolate.

Again, we have no pudding. We have pears.

Fine. You want me to take a damn pear?

Then I'll take all the pears, woman.

That way, you'll run out of pears instead of pudding!

For the first time, Erica got a taste of what it was like to be her brother.


But none of Barry's public meltdowns ever rivaled my sister's pear-throwing, pudding rant.

Huh?! Everyone gets a pear!

All right, show's over! My office!


[Shoes squeaking]



Ooh, that's gonna be a tough one to walk off.

While Erica was forced into detention, I was was forced to entertain myself with my backup toys from the '70s.

Big news, little man.

Guess who just won all your toys back.

It was me.

Yeah, I did exactly whatever she's about to tell you.

Really? How?

Specifics aren't important. [Chuckles]

What matters is that pops once again saved the day.

That's why he's your hero.

He really is.

What the hell is this?

Oh, that's one of those, uh, robo change 'em ups you love so much.

This is a GoBot.

I gambled away all my Transformers.

And the difference would be?

This is a Transformer, and this is a GoBot.

Look at the obvious difference.

Forget about the robots. Look what you've got here.

[Singsong voice] Nintardo!

What did you just call me?

No, it's the thing you play all day long... Nintardo.

Oh, my God, are you combining Nintendo and Atari into some horrible mom word?

Bev, enough. It's time we just level with the kid.

I, uh...

May have gone to the toy store to replace your toys.

Pops, why couldn't you just win it all back for me?

That's the thing... Over the years, I may have fudged a few details about how much I've won.

What are you talking about?

I've see you win so much at Casinos, they shower you with the freshest seafood the ocean has to offer.

First of all, that seafood I-i-is both frozen and of the lowest quality.

And they give it to you when you bet aggressively and lose.

So, have you been fudging other things, too?

No... Maybe.

What about all your legendary war stories?

Are those true?

Well, mostly.

Did you karate-kick Mussolini in the face?

No, but I was a very outspoken critic.


My whole life, I thought that you were special.

But you're just a liar.

It had been an hour since Erica's meltdown, and she was feeling the pain.

This is a nightmare.

Well, why don't you let coach buck you up with a little story?

Please don't.

It's about an awkward and goofy-looking caterpillar.

She had heart, she had spirit, but nobody saw it because, on the outside, she had wild hair and a jacked-up eye.

You're clearly talking about me.

No, I'm talking about a caterpillar.

I'm clearly the caterpillar.

Anyway, this caterpillar, who is not you, eventually spun herself a little cocoon of confidence.

And then... Poof.

What emerged was but a beautiful butterfly.

Oh, my God!

Y-you're giving me the uggo speech.

That's the same story you tell all the dorks and losers.

Wait, people know this?

I know it 'cause you gave it to me in ninth grade.

Really? That's a heck of a long time to be in a cocoon.

I'm a butterfly!

I'm just going though some stuff, okay?

Well, then, let me tell you another story about a lady who never got married, but she became one heck of a cool aunt.

I'm a butterfly.

Yes, you are... Under your skin.

Here's a pudding. Thought you could use it.

Just go away. I don 't want your pity pudding.

Damn it. Yes, I do.

Okay, I talked to Lainey, and we want you to come with us to "Dance Party USA."

I can't go on TV looking like this.

I can't even go out in the world like this.

Trust me, you can.

How would you know?


This is what I feel like every day.

When I saw you freaking out in the cafeteria, I saw me.

And I realized I never want to see you feel that way again.

Why are you being so nice to me?

'Cause no matter how scary you look, you'll always be my big sister.

[Sobbing] That's just so nice.

Oh, God, don't hug me.

♪ Highway run ♪

Ohh, I need to hug you.

Sure, Erica and Barry never really saw eye-to-eye,

♪ Into the midnight sun ♪

but for the first time, they saw each other clearer than ever.

Oh, look at you. You got all your crap back.

Only 'cause I agreed to give Garry all of my desserts at lunch until we graduate.

You know, you were right. Pops isn't a hero.

He's a fraud.

That's not what I meant.

Listen, pops may not be magic, but he's a terrific grandfather and he's always there for you.

♪ Sending all my love ♪

But he still lied to me.

He exaggerated. That's what all grandfathers do.

You know why?

'Cause they want you to love them as much as they love you.

Thanks to my dad, I realized that pops wasn't the lucky one.

I was for having him in my life.

Hey, pops, what's with the bran cereal?

Don't you want to hit the waffle house and the museum?


I-I just assumed you didn't want to go with me anymore.

Just do me a favor and give it to me straight from here on out.

Deal. And I'm gonna start by giving you this.

My grandpa gave it to me, and now I carry him with me wherever I go.

Now you'll carry me with you.

And if that ain't magic, I don't know what is.

When you're young, it's easy to believe in magic.

♪ Whoa, oh, oh-oh ♪

Come on, kid.

Beverly: Have fun with your grandfather.

♪ Whoa, oh, oh-oh ♪

Oh, and no Atlantic City!

♪ Whoa, oh, oh-oh, oh-oh ♪

That's right! I know!

But as you get older, you realize the real magic comes from the people you love.

♪ Faithfully ♪
♪ I'm still yours ♪

Truth is, your greatest memories are always the ones with family at your side.

Sure, they may not be pretty or turn out exactly as you planned.

In fact, some of our most embarrassing moments lead to our greatest victories.

Of course, at the time, it may not seem that way.

It's only when you sit down and take a good look back that you can't help but smile 'cause it's those very flaws... that make the memories absolutely perfect.

Happy to report the dorks and dinks are afraid to talk to me again.

All is right with the world.

Well, now that you've been on the other side, maybe you'll have pity for them.


What's up, gang?

Oh my!


Got your stupid pink eye... In both eyes.

And I was so upset I threw my hair dryer against the wall and broke it.

Now I'm so stressed, I think I may be getting a little pimple. Am I?

There might be something coming in.

[Sighs] I'm so sorry, Barry.

If you don't want to be seen with me, I totally get it.

I'm not gonna lie. I'm super into this.

I love dating a weirdo.

That's right you do.