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Father Lode is the twenty-first episode of Season 2 of the FOX sitcom Married... with Children, as well as the 34th overall episode in the series. Written by Jerry Perzigian, the episode was directed by Linda Day and premiered on FOX on March 13, 1988.


Al tries to keep his race track winnings a secret, while Peg starts taking money from Al's wallet.


The episode opens with Peg, Kelly and Bud stealing dollars out of Al's wallet behind his back then when Al comes back down they form a line asking him for their allowances as today is Pay Day. Steve then invites Al to go betting on horses at the race tracks. Al ends up winning $1250, but knowing the greedy gold-digger he married, he gets desperate to hide the cash. He even has to let Peg have sex with him, which he normally despises, for warmth because Peg tried to use his dirty laundry for an extra blanket but Al just hid the prize money in the laundry basket.

The next day, Al goes to work and Peg finds that he still hasn't cashed in his paycheck from the shoe store to which she (correctly) deduces that there is money in the house and frantically tries finding it. Marcy gets suspicious as well over Steve hiding money from her.

Al has difficulty figuring out what to do with his prize money, as he cannot even remember what he used to spend money on before Peg and the kids came in and drained away all his finances. Steve keeps pressuring him to spend the money, but Al doesn't know if he even wants to buy anything. He decides that he's had enough trouble hiding the money he realizes he doesn't see any use for himself, so he flaps the dollar bills like a bell and draws in Peg and the kids then hands it over to them, as they go on a shopping spree.

Marcy finds the money Steve was hiding from her, and as gratitude for all the "help" Steve was to him for the whole week, Al calms down Marcy by stating it's his money Steve was keeping.


Regular Cast[]

Recurring Cast[]


  • Al: Hey, Peg... listen, I know you were planning to fix me some nice nothing for supper, but you better freeze it, cause Steve and I are going to the track tonight.
  • Peg: [puts magazine down] That really hurts, Al! You know, I purposely didn't ask you for any money today and now you're going to go blow it at the track! That's where all your money goes, you know?!
  • Al: No, I don't think so, Peg! See, I've never woken up in the middle of the night to find a quarter horse going through my wallet!

  • [Al is at work, counting his winnings from the racetrack and kisses the money. A sexy women enters and tries to get Al's attention]
  • Jade: Hi there, shoe man!
  • [Al suddenly stops counting his money and stares at her, with his mouth wide open]
  • Jade: I was in here last week and I can't stop thinking about you. [sits down and crosses her legs, as Al keeps staring at her] Remember me?
  • Al: Nightly! Uh... I mean vaguely. Can I help you?
  • Jade: I don't know how else to say it... [leans in] but I want you!
  • Al: Well, that's so nice. [disappointed] But... I'm married.
  • Jade: Perfect! That means you're already broken in...
  • [Jade stands up and starts unbuttoning her top, as Al continues staring at her. It eventually turns out to be a fantasy as Steve is actually behind Al trying to get his attention]
  • Steve: Al... Al...
  • [Al leans his head over and kisses the back of Steve's hand, before waking up and realizing that it was just a dream and gets up in disgust]
  • Al: What do you want?! Can't you see I'm busy?! [Steve looks around the empty store and then wipes the back of his hand on Al's shirt]

  • Steve: Oh, by the way, Al, do you want a ride home?
  • Al: Nah, I got my car...
  • Steve: Yeah, I saw it in the lot, but it might be tough to drive with all that broken glass on the seat... don't worry, it wasn't vandalism. They stole your radio.
  • Al: [pauses for a moment before smiling and snapping his fingers] Great!
  • Steve: Well, that's what I was thinking, but its not something you say to a friend.
  • Al: [smiling] No, Steve... now I know what to buy... A new car stereo! Its perfect! See, now I can buy something for one of my favorite places in the world: my car! 'Cause when I'm in my car, I don't have any wife or kids! I'm alone! I'm whole! I'm with the one I love! And Peggy never drives my car, so she'll never know! Tee-hee! I get to spend all my money on me! Oh, man! I'll have it installed tomorrow! Let's go buy it now!



  • The episode title is based on the expression "Mother Lode", which is used colloquially to refer to the real or imaginary origin of something valuable or in great abundance.


  • The magazine Peggy is reading is called Sports Time.
  • It is mentioned that Steve's father has been accused of selling secrets to the enemy.
  • Bud states that he is still a virgin in this episode, under the "Double for Virgins" rule.
  • Al mentions that he and Steve will go to the race tracks and later wins $1250. A few episodes earlier, in "Born to Walk", Al was supposed to go the track, but ended up listening to it on the radio with Steve after Kelly and Peggy arrived late, and then lost his bet to him.
  • This episode marks the second appearance of Jade, the sexy woman who visits Al at the shoe store, played by Playboy Playmate Teri Weigel. She appeared in 4 episodes between season 2 and 5.
  • Near the end of the episode, Bud mentions that he will buy a new skateboard with the cash that Al had to give to his family. Bud actually received a a new skateboard in "Master the Possibilities" and it can be seen sitting on the staircase in the episodes that followed until the previous episode, when it was no longer there. The skateboard reappears in season 3, starting in "Poke High".

Cultural References[]

  • Al mentions to Peg that he is watching Ted Koppel, a British-American news anchor who hosted ABC's "Nightline" from 1980 to 2005.
  • Al sarcastically calls Steve "Hondo", in reference to the character played by John Wayne in the film of the same name.
    • In the next episode, Al tries to watch Hondo while dealing with Peggy's visiting relatives.
  • When Bud comes out of the basement after Peg starts looking for Al's money, he is clearly holding a Penthouse magazine in the back of his pants. It is the January 1986 issue. [1]




  • Bundy Living Room/Kitchen
  • Al & Peggy's Bedroom
  • Shoe Store

External Links[]


◄ Season 1 Season 2 Episodes Season 3 ►
Poppy's by the Tree (Part 1)Poppy's by the Tree (Part 2)If I Were a Rich Man
Buck Can Do ItGirls Just Wanna Have Fun (Part 1)Girls Just Wanna Have Fun (Part 2)
For Whom the Bell TollsBorn to WalkAlley of the DollsThe Razor's Edge
How Do You Spell Revenge?Earth AngelYou Better Watch OutGuys and Dolls
Build a Better MousetrapMaster the PossibilitiesPeggy Loves Al, Yeah, Yeah, Yeah
The Great EscapeImpo-DentJust Married... with ChildrenFather LodeAll in the Family