79f: Howard Hesseman / Randy Newman
The Nuclear Family
[ open on footage of the nuclear reactors at Three Mile Island, over bouncy music ]
Announcer: And now, it's time for... "The Nuclear Family".
[ title card appears over a lone house situated between two large nuclear reactors ]
[ dissolve to interior, living room ]
[ Mom enters room yawning, still in her overnight robe. She lightly dusts a lampshade before sitting down on the couch ]
[ Dad enters ]
Dad: [ groggy-voiced ] Hey, I'm home.
Mom: Oh hi, honey! How was work?
Dad: Oh, okay. I'm just bushed. I sure am glad the plant's nearby -- if it was any further, I-I think I'd just have to... [ he collapses into a chair along the wall ] get another job.
Mom: Well, why don't you make yourself a drink?
Dad: [ he stands ] No, no, no. I'm really too tired. [ he moves over to sit next to his wife on the couch ] How was your day?
Mom: Fine. Fine. I just got up a little while ago.
Dad: Oh, yeah. [ he begins to fiddle with a tooth ] I think this one's gonna be gone by morning. [ he pulls the tooth out ] No.
Mom: Oh. Another one. Oh golly, honey. [ she nearly loses her train of thought ] Oh, uh, by the way -- we've been invited over to dinner with the Stelsons.
Dad: Again? [ she nods ] I don't feel like going, honey. I have a cold.
Mom: Oh now, honey, you can't use that excuse again.
Dad: But I AM sick! I've had this cold for months. I just can't shake it.
Mom: Well, have you seen the company doctor?
Dad: Yeah. I must have been X-rayed a hundred times.
[ their Son enters the door, his arm in a sling ]
Mom: Hi, Son! What happened to you?
Dad: You hurt yourself in practice?
Billy: Not exactly. I was in the locker room at school, and I pulled my t-shirt over my head and heard this snap. I think I broke my arm.
Mom: Ohhhhh, well, well, Mr. Briitle Bones!
Dad: Ah, sometimes I think you'll do anything to get out of helping us around the house so he can spend more time with that girlfriend of his!
Billy: Come on, Dad.
[ he sits next to his dad on the couch ]
[ Dad laughs playfully and pats the boy's head, accidentally pulling a clump of hair loose from the back ]
Mom: Listen, how is Janie, anyway? I haven't seen her around here. Did you two have a fight? She used to be around here all the time.
Billy: Aw, she hasn't been feeling too well lately.
Mom: Ohhh. I hope it's not too serious. [ she scratches her hair and pulls out a clump attached to a roller ] She's such a cute girl.
Dad: The boy spends TOO much time with her, if you ask me. Now, maybe he'll pay more attention to his school work. By the way, Billy -- I think I can pull a few strings and get you a job at the plant this summer.
Billy: I don't know, Dad. Could we talk about that later? I'm really tired now. [ he dozes off ]
Dad: [ surrendering ] Okay.
[ their daughter enters the front door ]
Daughter: Hi, Mom. Hi, Dad.
Mom: [ chuckling ] What took you so long?
Daughter: Oh, I rested on the way.
Mom: Don't you have a big date tonight, honey?
Daughter: Oh, not any more. I told Ryan I couldn't make it. [ she starts to pull clumps of hair from her head ]
Mom: Why not?
Daughter: I'm not going anywhere until my skin clears up! I don't think it ever will.
Mom: Honey, ALL young girls your age go through this. If you'd just stop picking at that sore, it would go away!
Daughter: But I HAVEN'T been picking it, I SWEAR! It just won't go away! I'm gonna start wearing a veil to school.
Mom: Why don't you have a glass of lemonade? It's got LOTS of sugar in it, it'll pick you right up!
Daughter: No. I don't think so. I feel a little queasy. I think I'm just gonna go to my room.
[ she exits the living room ]
Mom: Billy? Some lemonade?
Billy: [ thinking ] Yeah. I guess I could hold that down.
Mom: Then, why don't you go fix it?
[ Billy exits to the kitchen ]
Dad: Honey, uh, why don't you just call the Stelsons, and just tell them that we're not coming, okay?
Mom: Ohhh, no, honey. You're not getting out of it this time.
Dad: Then, just let me get a little shuteye first, hmm? Could you turn out the light?
Mom: Okay, dear.
[ she crosses the room, turns out the light, then exits ]
[ reveal Dad laying asleep on the couch in the dark, as green light radiates from his chest ]
Announcer: Join us tomorrow for more fun with "The Nuclear Family".
[ fade ]