Al tries anything to pay off his gas station debt in "The Gas Station Show" in Season 6 of MWC.
|Season 6, Episode # 23 |
Number (#128) in series (259 episodes)
|Guest star(s)||Phil Buckman|
Heather Elizabeth Parkhurst
|Writer(s)||Ron Leavitt & Michael G. Moye|
|Taping date||March 20, 1992|
|Original airdate||April 26, 1992|
|IMDb||The Gas Station Show|
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The Gas Station Show was the 23rd episode of season 6 of Married... with Children, also the 128th overall series episode. Directed by Gerry Cohen and co-written by series creators Ron Leavitt and Michael G. Moye, the episode originally premiered on FOX, airing on April 26, 1992.
Al is sitting on the couch, watching television. Just then, Peggy, Kelly and Bud come in, but immediately stop in their tracks. Peg realizes that they're in trouble now, as Al is watching "Shenandoah" and Kelly points out that as soon as the theme song plays, Al is going to burst out into tears. Just then, the song plays and he starts to slowly cry as the song reaches its climax and he then points to his family and to the show he continues to cry.
The rest of the Bundys look scared now, as they realize that because of the movie, Al will feel more compelled to spend time with them. They quietly try to sneak past Al and head to the stairs, but he's able to stop them before they get to the staircase, calling them to a family meeting. As Al is about to start his speech, Peg stops him, asking what kind of punishment awaits them for the family activity he wants to do, sarcastically asking if its going to be horseshoes, bocce or a trip to the zoo. Al then points that they are no longer allowed at the zoo, "thanks to young Mr. Bundy who answered the question, 'What happens when you feed a panda Pop Rocks?'". Bud defends his actions, saying that at least he had some intellectual curiosity, before pointing out that he wasn't the one who pointed to the leopards and screamed "How many animals died for that coat?". Kelly then points out that at least she didn't moon the monkeys, before Peg hangs her head in guilt. Bud says he didn't turn Peg in and Kelly points out that she didn't ask the female chimp to be his prom date, and he defends himself again, saying that chimp was hot, before they break out into a fist fight, with her telling him that he's sick for liking that.
Al breaks up the fight, and tells them that they're missing point of the movie, which is that families should be together, but Peg says they don't want to be together. He immediately tells her that they have no choice in the matter and declares that today shall be "Bundy Sunday Fun-Day". He continues on that they will take a Sunday drive in the Dodge, which causes Kelly to scream in horror and for that, Al decides to punish her by making her ride in the back with Peggy and asks if the others have any more issues with the Dodge, which cause her and Bud to shake their heads no. He continues on that in addition, he'll have a surprise for them, which they take turns guessing at what it could be:
Bud: "You got a bumper sticker that says, 'My other car is my feet"?
Kelly: "You used your finger to make a really cool racing stripe in the dirt on the side of the car?"
Peggy: "You got a new 8-track of "Hotel California"? We can crank it as we're towed down the freeway?"
Al goes behind the couch, and tells them to dress in their finest, grab their "vittles" and prepare for a day of fun, family and love, putting his arm around his family as they become disgusted at this notion.
At a local gas station, the Dodge can be seen being pushed to a pump by Al, Bud and Peg as Kelly is leading the way. As Al sings "64 bottles of beer on the wall, 64 bottles of beer..." Peg tells him he stinks and Bud asks how come Kelly isn't pushing, before she tells him "Drop dead, you little doodie". Al, tells them to shut up and then, still unshaken from how things are going, puts on a smile and tells them that he won't let them ruin Bundy Sunday Fun-Day for him. He then walks over to the driver's side door and asks Kelly to put the car in park, but she tells him that she already did when they started pushing the car. Hearing this, he immediately beings to choke her and Peg and Bud try to pry his hands off of her. He then stops and calmly reassures them that he is OK, but then he immediately goes after her and chokes her again, but Peg and Bud stop him once more and push him away from her.
Peg, now annoyed at how the day is going, asks him what the big surprise is, since he promised to reveal what it was if they helped him pushed after the car ran out of gas. She then asks if he's dying, which causes the kids to look on eagerly, but much to their disappointment, he tells them no and points out that they were observant, they would have noticed it by now. As they look around, Peg final stops in disbelief and begins to cry tears of joy, as she noticed that they had stopped in front of the Full Service pump and asks if this can be really true. Al reassures her that its true, saying : "After years of living like paupers, the Bundys are gonna do what the Rockefellers are doing. We're gonna get our gas today from the Full Serve pump!" The Bundys then dance and cheer for Al, and Pegs cries out in joy, "Oh, Al. I feel like a princess!" and blows her nose on his shirt's sleeve. He then asks them "Who's the king of surprises?" and they all scream out "Daddy!!". Happy at how the family's attitude has changed, he then asks who wants to honk the horn to summon the gas attendant and after a moment, decides to let Bud do it. As he honks the horn, Peg asks Al if its a little rude, but he tells her that for the extra $0.25 he has to pay, the attendant will take it and like it.
Shortly after that, a long haired muscular man named Joe comes out and asks what would they like. Al tells him he would like $2 worth of gas. Joe then takes out the rag that's being used for a gas cap, flicks a fleck of gas from the nozzle of the pump into the direction of the tank and replaces the rag. He asks Al if there is anything else he would like and Al tells him to check under the hood, which makes him feel proud that he is able to get someone to follow his orders, causing him to shed a tear, though Peg also points out that this is the first time that he has had 2 dollars. Joe is able to remove the complete hood of the Dodge and tells Al that he's down 3 quarts of oil. He then asks him if would like him to refill it, but Al points out that he doesn't multiple paychecks a week and instead to check something else. Joe points out that the engine block is cracked and the fanbelt is made up of a pair of nylon stockings. Peg hears this and notices that its her favorite black pair of nylons, but Al puts his arm around her and says: "Hey, what do you wanna do? You wanna look good walking, or look good riding?"
Bud, eager to boss someone around, asks Al if it would be alright, and tells him to get his own wife, mistaking his request to boss Peg around. After Bud corrects him, Al reminds him that its Bundy Sunday Fun-Day, so of course he can as they playfully mock fight each other. He then walks over to Joe and tells him that he if checks the tires, they'll be a cool nickel for him, but Al quickly pulls him aside and nervously tells him that they don't have a nickel. Joe points out that the tires are pretty low on air and asks if they want him to fill them up, but Kelly tells him that they're fine and will just breath the air around them. Peg tells Al that he's made this day a wonderful day and Al hugs his family. Then, Peg notices a lady at a self serve pump and her and the kids go over to mock her. Al starts talking to Joe about what he hates when it comes to cars:
"It's all those damn Japanese imports. You know, after seeing a bunch of those clunkers, you don't mind putting a little elbow grease into one of these fine American products, huh? [Al pats the roof of the Dodge proudly. Its left headlight falls out.] Hahaha. That's why I always got me [retrieving a bumper sticker from inside the car] a bunch of fine American bumper stickers to show where I'm coming from. [sticks the bumper sticker over the headlight so it stays in place] Yep! Takes a good American bumper sticker to hold in a headlight, hey, Joe?"
Joe seems to agree with him, noting that the roof seems to be pretty strong with all the bird feces on it. Seeing that there are no more free services, Al decided to pay Joe exactly $2 and as he finishes paying, Peg and the kids come out of the convenience store with sunglasses and snacks. Al then asks Joe where is that smile that is suppose to come with full service and then Peg reveals that he owes the store $12, but Al is befuddled as he doesn't have the money and then Joe turns to Al with a smile on his face. Al then dons a blue shirt with the name "Habib" on it.
Later on, Al looks annoyed as Peggy mocks him saying, "Gee, kids, look how handsome Daddy Habib looks in his uniform." He then turns to face her and the kids and asks why did they have to eat him into debt. She is quick to point out that its his own fault: "Well, it's your own fault, Al. You take us into full serve, tell us to think like Rockefellers; of course we're gonna go for the ho-hos and the slim-jims!". As the kids get into the car, Kelly promises him that they'll get him out of this financial "fox paws" and Bud promises that he'll be home soon so he can curse the day he was born. As they start the car, Al tries to remind them about the importance of Shenandoah but they speed off in mid-sentence. Joe comes out and comments that they must really love him to speed off like that, but Al points out that if they really did love him, they would have gone in the direction of their house. Joe then informs him that today is one of their busy days, but suddenly Joe's girlfriend, Stacey, stops by, telling him that she stole her dad's jeep and wants to go to the beach with him and he decides to go, leaving Al by himself.
Al reassures himself that he'll be fine, as he sells shoes, so this wouldn't be any different. Plus his chances of seeing people he knows are low, until the D'Arcys pull up in their BMW. Marcy gets out and mocks Al, saying she could see him on the freeway because of his bald spot. Al then turns to Jefferson and mocks her by congratulating him for taking the Miller boy camping and ask if Marcy went shopping for a lacy shirt. Jefferson then tries to defend Marcy's flat chest:
I'll have you know, Al, that I happen to like tiny bazooms. [Marcy doesn't look happy] Oh, I had plenty of women before Marcy, and I swear you get tired of big, succulent breasts. Besides, I don't want a bunch of guys staring at my wife! I mean, that's the good thing about Marcy, no guy ever...
Before he can finish, Marcy grabs him by his testicles and stops him, making Al uncomfortable. She then tells him to fill up the car and he tells her that she doesn't have to "[chicken-like] buck-buck-buck-buck-buck" at him and that she'll "be out there on the highway blinding truckers in about a minute." As they turn away, Al pretends to fill the tank and make "glug-glug" sounds. He then finishes up and tells them that it'll be $12, but Jefferson tells him that he didn't fill it up. Marcy then tells Al that she needs to speak to his supervisor and tells Jefferson to find anyone, causing her to cackle. As they get back into their car, Al tries to tell them a story about how is now working there, but Jefferson automatically guessed that he couldn't pay for his gas, causing Al to break down and plead for the money from them. Marcy responds to his pleas by saying: "Oh Al, if all it will take is twelve dollars to regain your self respect and get out of this demeaning position... then ask someone who cares." They both laugh and drive off, running over Al's foot.
As Al hops around in pain, a red jeep pulls in and runs over his other foot. The driver, Jim Lundy and his family, Betty, Betty Jr. and Jim Jr., greet Al, who is still trying to get over the pain, but refer to him as Habib. Seeing his name and thinking he is from the other side of the hemisphere, the family greet him in unison saying "May the prophet smile upon you, Habib". Al responds: "Oh, he already has. With this fine job and the blood that flows in my shoe. How may this unworthy one serve you?" Jim asks him to inspect under the hood, not to demean him, but to ensure his family's safety. As Al looks under the hood, the family start to tell each other how much they love everyone in the Jeep, much to Al's disgust. Jim then tells his family that he has a surprise for them. Jim Jr. guessed that it was going to the Full Service pump, but Jim points out that only a bad father would do that and tells them that they're going on a picnic. Al becomes frustrated after hearing this and decided to get revenge by removing one of the hoses from the engine. As they begin telling each other how much they love one another, Al hurries them along and tells them it'll be $5. Betty then asks Jim if they should give Al a tip, but he decides not to and speeds off. As Al watches them leave, the sound of leaking is heard, followed by screeching tires and a crash. The hubcap from their jeep rolls towards Al, who then puts on a smile and gleefully dances around it, as the Lundys can be heard yelling at each other:
Betty: [angrily] I told you we should've taken my car!
Jim: [angrily] Your car?? Since when did you ever pay for anything?
Jim Jr.: Leave Mom alone!
Jim: Drop dead, the lot of ya!!
Later on, Al is standing by a pump offering some philosophical advice to someone:
"Nah, take my advice, Buddy. You probably got a lot of women pressuring them into marrying 'em, but... don't do it. Marriage leads to everything bad in life. Work, kids... "Habib" shirts. You understand what I mean?"
It turns out that he's dispensing his advice to a young boy on a bike. He then tells him to tell his friends about the advice and he runs over Al's foot. Still desperate to pay off his $12 debt, he tries to get it by holding up signs to bring in customers: He first starts off with a sign for "Authentic Habib Shirts", then moves on to "High School Football Stories". He also tries "Run Over My Foot" and "Moving - Must Sell Family". He even tries "Erotic Massage" and gets someone to stop. But as the person walks over, Al flips over the sign to reveal the message "(No Men)". Finally, he tries "Shoot Me", but knowing that it is no use, he drops the sign, puts his finger to his head and shoots himself.
Later on, Al's get his foot run over yet again and screams at the driver, asking if his foot is invisible, even though its swollen 3 times its normal size. Peg and the rest of the Bundys walk up to Al with a gas can. Peg tells him not to say a word, as she is having a bad day. Al though questions her, pointing out that she's been gone for seven hours, and within that time, she should have found $12. Peg goes on about her day, saying that's she having a bad day, as her mother found out that she now weighs 380, even though she had been 374 since high school. He then says that its probably because she has 6 lbs of food stuck between her teeth. He then asks about the money and Peg reveals that she did find a twenty dollar bill in a shirt that he wanted to wear, but she couldn't find. Though it turns out that she didn't even both to look for it in the first place. Al then demands the money, but Peg reveals that she doesn't actually have it, as she had to use to get a taxi to take them to the gas station and since she walked into full service, she demands that he gives her a smile as he fills up the gas can. Kelly then asks if Bundy Sunday Funday is over and he tells her:
"Ah yes, Pumpkin, I'm, I'm afraid that it is. But don't worry, see, next week we're gonna take a nice drive into the woods and we're going huntin'. See, I'll be the only one carrying a the rifle and you kids can run out there and flush out the game. We'll call it Bundy Sunday Gun-day."
Al tells her that it'll be $2, but she tells him to get it from someone else. As Peg and Kelly walk away, Al stops Bud and decides that he wants to teach him a lesson, since he expected this kind of behavior from the women. Bud defends himself, saying that he tried to convince them to help him sooner, but he fell asleep. He then tells Bud:
"Now I just want to tell you one thing, Son. All I wanted to do was spend one day with my family. Am I to be punished for this? Yes. Because it's a stupid, moronic thing to want to waste your Sunday with your family. Well, I payed for it. But now it's time for someone else to pay for it. [Al takes off his Habib shirt and puts it on Bud.]
"Habib" is dead. Long live Habib. The only way to save this, this final Bundy Sunday Fun-day, is to watch my only son suffer as I have suffered. The next car in here is yours."
Just then a group of blonde haired women in blue bikinis pull up in a blue Corvette. They introduce themselves as the Swedish Bikini Team and say that they love men named Habib and want to take him a long and bumpy ride with them. Bud gleefully jumps in and says good bye to Al, along with girls.
As Al watches Bud and the bikini team leave, a red VW Bug with a group of older, fat women pulls up. They introduces themselves as the Chicago Bowling Team and tell hm that they're looking for guys named Al, as they love guys named Al. Hearing this, he nods in agreement and tells them "Let's boogie!" as he hops into their car and they drive off.
Recurring cast/Guest stars
- Cast Regulars
- Ed O'Neill as Al Bundy
- Katey Sagal as Peggy Bundy
- Christina Applegate as Kelly Bundy
- David Faustino as Bud Bundy
- Amanda Bearse as Marcy D'Arcy
- Ted McGinley as Jefferson D'Arcy
- Buck the Dog as Buck Bundy
- Phil Buckman as Joe
- Colby Chester as Jim
- Leah Ayres as Betty
- Jeffrey Roth as Jim, Jr.
- Marisa Theodore as Betty, Jr.
- Andrea Leithe as Kid Stacey
- Peggy Trentini as Ulla
- Heather Elizabeth Parkhurst as Hilgar
- Anna Keller as Karin (as Anna Keller)
- This title of this episode is a reference to this episode revolving around Al being forced into working at the gas station after he brought his family there for "Bundy Sunday Funday"
- Al reveals that Bundy family is no longer allowed at the zoo, after Bud gave Pop Rocks to a panda.
- After Al is forced into indentured servitude to repay his bill at the gas station, he is given work clothes that have the name Habib on them. Habib would become a running gag within the show, used many times, most notably in the season 7 episode "Tis Time to Smell the Roses".
- If one looks at the sign above the convenience store entrance, the sign reads "1438 - R.M. Habib - Dealer / Owner"
- The Illinois license plate on Al's Dodge reads: 2 RPH 72.
- The correct word Kelly was suppose to use was financial faux pas, instead of financial fox paws.
- The Swedish Bikini Team was an actual group of spokesmodels for Old Milwaukee Beer that began in 1991. They were played by American actresses, wearing platinum blonde wigs and using fake Swedish accents, who played on the stereotypes of Scandinavian women being blonde and big breasted. The ads were dropped seven months later due to complaints from feminists groups deeming it sexist and demeaning to women.
- One of the actresses in the team, Heather Elizabeth Parkhurst previously appeared on MWC during season 5, as Flopsie, the secretary at the Weenie Tots factory in "Weenie Tot Lovers and Other Strangers" and as Almond, one of the girls in Al's fantasy in "Route 666 (Part 2)". She also played Sherry on Top of the Heap in the episode "Behind the Eight Ball".
- Betty, the wife of Jim, is played by Leah Ayres, an actress best known for her role in the 1987 martial arts film, Bloodsport.
- Joe, the gas station attendant, is played by Phil Buckman, an actor and musician known for appearing on shows such as Drexler's Class, Beverly Hills 90210, Fraiser, King of the HIll, and City of Angels. He had been playing bass for the band, Filter, until 2013. Most notably, he is the voice for Carl's Jr.'s / Hardees's television and radio commercials. He bears a striking resemblance to Red Hot Chili Peppers front man Anthony Keidis.
- Full Service is a type of service offered at gas stations where a gas jockey adds gas into a driver's vehicles, tests the wiper blades, checks the tire pressure and inspects under the hood of the vehicle, before collecting the amount due (and a tip). Although it was very common up until the 1970s, it is now a rarity, as most stations are now self-serve (except in Oregon and New Jersey, where gas can only be pumped by an attendant due to legal reasons) and the few stations that offer Full Service outside of those states are usually found in wealthy and upscale areas.
- In this episode, Al has to work off his debt at the gas station for $12.00 worth of snacks that his family didn't pay the cashier for. Minimum wage in Illinois (where the Bundys reside) was $4.25 an hour in 1992 when this episode was filmed. Al would only have to pump gas for two hours and fifty minutes to pay back the $12.00.
- Sherlock Ganz, who played Olga, the Chicago Bowling Team driver later appeared on MWC in the season 7 episode "Al on the Rocks" as the bar patron who yells at Al to hurry up with the drinks and then jokes about Al being shy when he comes out shirtless.
- In the same episode, 2 different woman can be seen wearing the Chicago Bowling Team shirt when Jefferson begins to work there.
- The film Al watches and inspires "Bundy Sunday Fun-Day" is Shenandoah, a film from 1965 starring Jimmy Stewart as a widower who is raising his six sons and a daughter during the Civil War.
- Al says that the family is banned from the zoo after Bud gave Pop Rocks to a panda. Pop Rocks are a type of candy, which has pressurized carbon dioxide gas bubbles embedded inside, creating a small popping reaction when it dissolves in one's mouth. It is also associated with an urban legend that consuming Pop Rocks with soda can cause a person's stomach to explode.
- Peggy sarcastically jokes that Al finally got an 8-track of the 1976 album, Hotel California by The Eagles.
- After showing the family that they are in the "Full Service" area, Al compares himself to the Rockefeller family, one of the wealthiest families in the world, who amassed their wealth through petroleum and have numerous buildings named after them.
- This fact might have caused the other Bundys to splurge. The only difference is that the Rockerfellers likely would have been able to splurge on buying the entire gas station with tons of money left over while the Bundys can't even afford a decent meal.
- Bud refers to Joe as "Goober" in reference to Goober Pyle an auto mechanic and later gas station owner from the 1960s television show, The Andy Griffith Show.
- The theme from Shenandoah is played when the film ends as the rest of the family points out.
- Al sings "99 Bottles" as he and the family push the car into the gas station.
- Bundy Residence
- Gas Station
- Bundy Living Room / Kitchen
- Gas Station
- When Al asks Joe to fill his gas tank with $2 worth of gas, he just flicks the tip of the nozzle towards Al's gas tank. The average gas price in 1992 was about $1.13 (and the sign by the front entrance says its 1.13 for regular and 1.30 for unleaded for full service), so he should have been able to put the nozzle in and given him just over a gallon of gas.
- The kid with the bike doesn't really drive over Al's foot. You can see and hear Al pulling his foot away a moment before the kid rides off.
- After the commercial break, when Peg jokes "Gee, kids, look how handsome Daddy Habib looks in his uniform" you can clearly see the D'Arcys' BMW and the Swedish Bikini Team's blue car behind them.
- After Joe removed the hood from the Dodge, he leaves it next to the car. Yet when the rest of the Bundys are about to leave, the car is still missing its hood, but its nowhere near the car and then, they speed off without it.
- The red gas can that Peggy had Al fill without paying can be seen on top the trash bin when the Swedish Bikini team pull up. Then it disappears when Bud and the team say "Bye, dad!" to Al and drive off. When the Chicago Bowling team pulls up, the gas can is now atop of an oil barrel next to the bin. Then when the camera does a close up of the bowling team greeting Al, the gas can is back on top of the trash bin again.
- When the Swedish Bikini Team pulls up to the gas station, the stage lights can be seen on the engine hood and the studio camera is reflected on the door of the car.