Al, who's started his church with NO MA'AM in a "religious crusade" over the issue of beer tax, gets in a media showdown with Marcy and her FANG group in the episode "Reverend Al" in Season 10 of MWC.
|Season 10, Episode # 4 |
Number (#213) in series (259 episodes)
|Guest star(s)||Harold Sylvester|
|Taping date||September 8, 1995|
|Original airdate||October 8, 1995|
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|"Requiem For A Dead Briard"||"How Bleen Was My Kelly"|
Reverend Al was the 4th episode aired in Season 10 of Married... with Children and the 213th overall series episode. Directed by Gerry Cohen and written by Kim Weiskopf, the episode originally aired on FOX, premiering on October 8, 1995.
When the beer tax increases, NO MA'AM is not able to afford good beer. To make some money and gain tax-exempt status, NO MA'AM becomes a church, with Al as the reverend. Peg buys gifts for herself for her birthday and asks the kids to give it to her. Marcy exposes them, but guys across the country support him and send him $10 each. They hold a function to collect more money and Al address all. He then loses all when his news of wooing Peg comes out.
There is a problem in NO MA'AM land as a beer tax forces the group to go with a cheaper beer. But Ike provides a way around the tax when it is reveled that his marriage is declared legal. The reason is because "Reverend Flashback" is a qualified minister. As a result, Al and his friends declare NO MA'AM to be a church with Al as the reverend. This enables the group to purchase everything tax free. When Marcy and her women's group FANGexpose Al's plan to the public, NO MA'AM surprisingly receives sympathy and donations from thousands of long-suffering married men in America, including a man named B. Clinton, which makes it possible for them to open their church. Al becomes a televangelist and preaches the NO MA'AM way of life. However, Marcy and her group finally get the church shut down when she reveals slides showing Al enjoying a birthday date with Peggy.
Recurring cast/character regulars
- Lucky the Dog as Lucky Bundy
- Harold Sylvester as Griff
- E.E. Bell as Bob Rooney
- Tom McCleister as Ike
- Teresa Parente as Miranda Veracruz de la Hoya Cardinal
- Benjamin Lum as Sticky
- Andrew Craig as Splib
- Rob Skyler as Mail Carrier
- Dot-Marie Jones as Dot
- Harvey Blanks as Congregation member
- Prince Hughes as Archimedes
- Lisa Marie Scott as Halla
- Jeanine Michelle as Luyah
- Kevin Curran as Voice of Lucky (Uncredited)
- The title of this episode is a reference to Al Bundy becoming a reverend in the Church of NO MA'AM
- Starting with this episode, the opening credits for this season have been updated and feature footage from the previous season to introduce the actors and actresses:
- Ed O'Neill - Al sitting on the couch wearing greyish-brown pants, holding the remote in one hand and heavily sighing before putting his other hand down his pants.
- Katey Sagal - Peggy smiling and clapping for Oprah from "25 Years and What Do You Get?".
- Amanda Bearse - Marcy coming in to tell Al about Psycho Dad's cancellation from "I Want My Psycho Dad (Part 1)".
- Christina Applegate - Kelly looking up and bringing her hands to her chest from "Something Larry This Way Comes".
- David Faustino - Bud rubbing his face on a mannequin's foot from "Naughty but Niece".
- Ted McGinley - Jefferson quickly shutting the door as Marcy is about to knock from "Sleepless in Chicago".
- Starting with this episode, the couch gag at the opening credits has changed, showing a now older Bud and Kelly as well as the newest family pet, Lucky. The previous version had been used since season 4.
- When Al says that the women can no longer "whip us like a nation of Gerry Cooneys", he is referring to 1980's Heavyweight Boxer Gerry Cooney.
- Cooney had a good record but is most remembered for two knockouts he suffered in Heavyweight Title fights, to Larry Holmes and later to Michael Spinks.
- The 1982 Holmes-Cooney fight was the most watched fight in televised boxing history.
- When Al cries and says he has sinned by consorting with his wife, he is alluding to Jimmy Swaggart, a television evangelist who in 1988 emotionally said to his congregation that he had "sinned" for having an inappropriate affair with a prostitute.
- One of Al's alter girls is played by former Playboy playmate Lisa Marie Scott who, 8 months before this episode aired, was Playboy's Playmate of the Month February 1995.
- Al's pulpit consist of beer cans, many of which are well known brands, such as Bud Light, Old Milwaukee, Miller Lite, and Miller Genuine Draft, as well as a can of Girlie Girl Beer, the beer of choice for NO MA'AM.
- The song played at the beginning of the mass is a version of "This is a Man's World" by James Brown, which is also heard in Flight of the Bumblebee.
- Channel 83 Action News, which covers Marcy's expose on NO MA'AM, was previous featured in season 4's Rain Girl and season 7's The Chicago Wine Party.
- The Pope and Dionne Warwick are mentioned as being on the "Forbes Top 500 of Wealthiest Televangelists", a parody of the annual Forbes Magazine listing of the wealthiest people in the world. Warwick was a regular fixture on the Psychic Friends Network infomercials featuring Linda Georgian as the most prominent psychic. It later went bankrupt. Not bankrupt is the Vatican which is the Pope's seat of power.
- One of the letters that the group receives mentions that he is "under the iron rule of a woman" and is signed "B. Clinton". This is in reference to then-U.S. President Bill Clinton who became well known for having affairs with other women before and during his Presidency.
- The line about being under the iron rule of a woman is a reference to his wife, then-First Lady Hillary Clinton. The media often portrayed Hillary as the real decision maker and the more dominating of the pair.
- After delivering the letters to Al, the postal worker tells him that he and his co-workers are willing to put down their mail pouches and assault rifles to follow Al and his church before saluting him.
- The mentioning of postal workers with assault rifles is in reference to multiple cases of United States Postal Workers going on mass shooting sprees since 1983, citing excessive stress from their jobs or suddenly losing their jobs. In 1993, these types of shootings lead to the creation of a slang term called "Going Postal".
- These incidents were previously referenced in "I Want My Psycho Dad: Second Blood (Part 2)" and "Kelly Takes a Shot".
- After counting the money and reading letters, Jefferson suggests that they do what what all churches do and open a theme park.
- Jefferson is referring to Heritage USA a Christian theme park that was opened by televangelist Jim Bakker and his wife Tammy Faye Messner. It was in operation from 1978 to 1989.
- Bakker became well known for his affair with Jessica Hahn who later posed for Playboy and played Al's shoe groupie Ricki in "So This is How Sinatra Felt and later married the show's creator Ron Leavitt.
- Right after their discussion, when Peggy calls out to Al, he addresses her as "Tammy Faye".
- When Peggy tries to remind Al what day it is, he suggests "Come as your favorite 'Hee Haw' character day at KMart?"
- Hee Haw was a variety show that aired on CBS from 1969 to 1971 and in syndication from 1971 to 1993. The show was known for showcasing country music and themes of living out in the country.
- Kmart is a big box retailer that is headquartered just outside of Chicago, Illinois. At the time this episode aired, the retailer was a successful chain that had stores across the U.S. and several other countries. As of 2021, only a very small but unknown number of stores still operate within the U.S. while KMart Australia still has 200 stores in operation.
- When the mailman asks whether Al is the NO MA'AM guy, Marcy says: "He's also Arnold the pig from 'Green Acres'."
- Jefferson and Sticky perform an instrumental variation of "It's a Man's Man's Man's World" by James Brown during Reverend Al's introduction.
- Bundy Residence
- Church of NO MA'AM
- Bundy Living Room / Kitchen
- Bundy Garage
- Church of NO MA'AM Seating Area / Pulpit