Married with Children Wiki

Breaking Up Is Easy To Do (Part 1) is the 14th episode of season 11 of Married... with Children and the 249th overall series episode. Directed by Mark K. Samuels and written by Matthew Berry & Eric Abrams, it premiered on FOX-TV on February 24, 1997.


Peggy and Al together visit a marriage counselor - but wind up leaving separately. Meanwhile, Kelly fights in the ring for a part in a boxing movie.

Plot Summary[]

Bud gets Kelly a new acting gig, where she has to compete with Heather, her nemesis. They end up challenging each other to a boxing match. After a lot of training she beats Heather. When Al-Peggy lose badly in a "Know Your Spouse Board Game" against Marcy-Jefferson and Griff-His girlfriend, they decide to see a marriage counselor on Marcy-Jefferson's suggestion. They fight and break up.

Recurring Cast[]

Guest cast[]

  • Lisa Robin Kelly as Heather Talrico
  • Jake Johannsen as Dr. H. Longo
  • Kellie Beals as Nancy
  • Gerry del Sol as Referee



  • The episode title is inspired by the song "Breaking Up Is Hard To Do" by Neil Sedaka.


  • Parts 1 and 2 were originally shown as a one-hour episode.
  • Peggy's birthday is given as April 12.
  • The taping of this episode was delayed after an earlier, more serious draft of the script was deemed unsuitable. Earlier drafts of the script featured Al instigating the break-up after Peggy admits that she lied about being pregnant to make him commit to marrying her.
  • "Breaking Up is Easy to Do" was initially planned as a two-part story.
  • Lisa Robin Kelly, who plays Kelly rival, Heather, previously appeared on MWC as Carol, one of Kelly's former schoolmates who asks her for advice in the season 7 episode, "Kelly Doesn't Live Here Anymore".
    • A year after this episode aired, she would go on to star in another FOX sitcom, That '70s Show.
  • As revealed in the the Passion board game that the Bundys, D'Arcys and Griff with his date, Nancy play:
    • Marcy's favorite song is "You Light Up My Life" by Debby Boone
    • Nancy's ideal date would involve pepperoni pizza, a foot rub, and watching old kung fu films.
    • Marcy's childhood dream was to be a princess
    • Nancy's childhood dream was to be Mrs. J.J. Walker
    • Peggy's childhood dream was to be a ballerina
    • Peggy's birthday is April 12
    • Al doesn't know Peggy's movie, birthday, or eye color
    • Peggy reveals that Al and her first made love on a crate in the back of a Tastee-Freez
  • If one looks closely behind Peggy when Al begs her stop calling her mom to stay with them, you can clearly see a picture frame with what appears to be a promo pictures of the cast from season 1.

Cultural References[]

  • After Marcy brings over shrimp balls, Peggy is shown squeezing ketchup packets into a serving bowl. She then says that Peggy must having been taking lessons from Martha Stewart, a businesswoman and television personality, who is known for doing at home projects and cooking.
  • There are several references to the boxing film franchise, Rocky and the character, Rocky Balboa.
    • During her rehearsal for the film, Kelly begins mimicking Balboa's accent
    • The song, "Eye of the Tiger" that is featured in Rocky III, is played during Kelly's training montage and during her boxing match.
    • Kelly training in the Bundy living room and consuming whole eggs in their shell in a glass parodies the training montage from the first Rocky film.
  • After Kelly expresses concern about where Lucky slept when Al said he slept in the dog house, Bud calls her "Sugar Ray Tard" in reference to retired professional boxer, Sugar Ray Leonard.
    • Sugar Ray Leonard previously appeared on MWC as himself in the season 6 episode, "Just Shoe It".
  • After Peggy rejects Al's apology gift, he offers to take her to see The Great Escape at the Bijou.
    • The Great Escape is a 1963 war film about a group of soldiers trying to escape from a Nazi prison camp.
    • Bijou, in this case was a common name for movie theaters back when films first came out following the downfall of vaudeville entertainment. Its French name, meaning "Jewel", was meant to impress visitors as attending a movie was a more formal event with fancy interior designs.[1][2] Coincidentally, there was an actual Bijou Theater in Chicago that served as a gay adult theater/sex club.
  • Peggy reveals that she and Al made love for the first time in the back of a Tastee-Freez, a fast-food restaurant specializing in soft serve ice cream.
    • Although it was founded in Illinois, as of 2020, there are only 2 locations left in the entire state of Illinois and in other states, are mostly located inside the hot hog restaurant chain, Wienerschnitzel.
  • Nancy mentions that she wanted to be "Mrs. J.J. Walker", in reference to the character from the 1970s sitcom, Good Times. She also uses his catchphrase, "Dy-No-Mite!".
  • During their bout, Kelly compares Heather's acting skills to actress, Brook Shields.
  • Al reveals that the only film he has cried at was the 1957 Disney film, Old Yeller, due to its tragic ending.


  • A cover version of "Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor is played during Kelly's training montage.
  • Peggy quotes the lyrics from the Gloria Gaynor song "I Will Survive".



  • Bundy Living Room / Kitchen
  • Gary's Aerobics Studio cardio area
  • Jim's Gym boxing ring


  • When Al goes to the door to welcome Griff and Nancy, he doesn't have anything in his hand. After the camera shows Marcy asking who wants to play Passion, it cuts back to Al, who suddenly clutching a bottle of antacids.
  • Heather tells Kelly to meet her at Gary's Aerobics Studio for their boxing match. But, on the day of the match, there are at a completely different place called "Jim's Gym"
  • After celebrating her match, Kelly's front teeth are missing. Yet, Kelly only took a light jab to the face and her teeth were still intact when she tells Heather "Thanks, I already have plans!" seconds before she knocked Heather out.


◄ Season 10 Season 11 Episodes  
TwistedChildren of the CornsKelly's Gotta HabitRequiem for a Chevyweight (Part 1)
Requiem for a Chevyweight (Part 2)A Bundy ThanksgivingThe Juggs Have Left the Building
God Help Ye Merry BundymenCrimes Against ObesityThe Stepford PegBud on the Side
Grime and PunishmentT*R*A*S*HBreaking Up Is Easy to Do (Part 1)
Breaking Up Is Easy to Do (Part 2)Breaking Up Is Easy to Do (Part 3)Live Nude Peg
A Babe in ToylandBirthday Boy ToyLez Be FriendsDamn BundysThe Desperate Half-Hour (Part 1)
How to Marry a Moron (Part 2)Chicago Shoe Exchange