Al restoring the "status quo" in the episode "Top of the Heap" in Season 5 of MWC.
|Season 5, Episode # 20 |
Number (#100) in series (259 episodes)
|Guest star(s)||Matt LeBlanc|
Joey Lauren Adams
|Writer(s)||Ron Leavitt and Arthur Silver|
|Original airdate||April 7, 1991|
|IMDb||Top of the Heap (episode)|
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"The Agony and the Agony" (TOTH)
Top of the Heap was the 20th episode of Season 5 of Married... with Children, also the landmark 100th episode of the series. Directed by Gerry Cohen, it was co-written by Ron Leavitt and Arthur Silver, who would later go on to create the WB network series, Unhappily Ever After, which was based on the formula of the success of MWC. The episode originally aired on FOX, premiering on April 7, 1991.
In this special 100th episode (which features only Al Bundy in a small cameo), Al's divorced and unemployed friend Charlie Verducci (Joseph Bologna) and his dim-witted teenage son Vinnie (Matt LeBlanc), try to fit in with snobs at a high-class party where Charlie hopes that Vinnie will meet and marry a debutaune.
This is the pilot episode for the spin-off series Top of the Heap.
The fifth season's twentieth episode, this was the landmark centenary episode of MWC and the backdoor pilot for Top of the Heap as a spin-off. Charlie and Vinnie Verducci from "Oldies But Young 'Uns" returned, and we saw where and how they lived. In the 100th episode (which features only Al Bundy in a small cameo), Al's friend Charlie and his dimwitted son Vinnie try to fit in with snobs at a ritzy, high-class party.
Vinnie and Charlie are superintendents of a run-down apartment building. Vinnie is recovering from a boxing match that he lost the other night while fending off come-ons from their local teenage neighbor Mona Mullins. Feeling bored with their miserable lives, Charlie comes up with a "Verducci Master Plan": he and Vinnie secretly crash a formal, high society fund-raiser to meet some wealthy women for themselves hoping Vinnie will marry a débutante, while Charlie himself fends off come-ons from a rather large rich woman. They also visit Al at Gary's Shoes to exchange some facts of life about women, where Al is revealed to have lost his TV set in a bet due to Vinnie's poor boxing ability.
Guest stars 
- Matt LeBlanc as Vinnie Verducci
- Joseph Bologna as Charlie Verducci
- Diana Bellamy as Kathleen Morgan
- Joey Lauren Adams as Mona Mullins
- Rebecca Cross as Tyler Cameron
- John Mansfield as Roger Bonderly
- Charles Howerton as Nelson
- Dennis Holahan as Man #1
- Harold Harris as Man #2
- Kathryn O'Reilly as Woman
- Tim Hill as Security Man
- Jill Pierce as Mary Ann
- The title of this episode is likely a reference to either the 1980 film or 1989 CBS political drama, Top of the Hill
- This episode marks the 100th episode of MWC.
- The 100th episode of a television series is usually considered a special event because it means that the show is likely going into syndicated rerun, as MWC eventually did. But it's rumored that many people didn't realized that this was the 100th episode, considering that Al himself is the only MWC star in the episode and he only appears briefly.
- Katey Sagal, Amanda Bearse, Ted McGinley, Christina Applegate and David Faustino do not appear in this episode.
- This episode was the pilot for the spin-off series Top of the Heap (1991).
- Joey Lauren Adams who played Mona would later appear on MWC as Cousin Effie and Janey.
- Diana Bellamy, who played Kathleen in this episode, previously appeared on MWC as Nancy, one of the fat women that Al has to deal with during season 1.
- Charles Howerton, who played Nelson in this episode, previously played Brooke's father in "One Down, Two to Go".
- Charlie reveals that he was a U.S. Marine when he decides to kiss Katherine.
- Joseph Bolonga, who played Charlie, actually was in the United States Marine Corps having served a tour of duty after college.
- In this episode, in addition to Ron Leavitt and Michael G. Moye, Arthur Silver was credited as another executive producer in the intro. Ths made the animated "EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS" split into unanimated "EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS" and "EXECUTIVE PRODUCER".
- Al tells Charlie that Kelly and Bud were conceived while he was watching the 1960s television series, Get Smart.
- Al previously mentioned wanting to watch Get Smart on a portable TV instead of having sex with Peggy in "Here's Lookin' at You, Kid".
- While talking to Charlie about a philosopher he learned about in high school, he mistakes the Greek philosopher, Plato with the Disney cartoon character Pluto.
- To prepare themselves for being at a fancy party, Charlie mentions that he read 3 different books and taken their ideas to blend in with the socialites:
- Trump: The Art of the Deal - "How about that market?" likely referencing Donald Trump who at the time was known for making business deals in the real estate market.
- The Wall Street Journal - "Damn Democrats!" likely referring to the publication's conservative bent, as it tends to be more popular among conservative readers.
- "Rich Babes in Chains" - "Punish me! I've been very, very bad!"
- Verducci Residence
- Gary's Shoes & Accessories for Today's Woman
- Banquet Hall
- Verducci Apartment Living Room / Kitchen
- Shoe Store
- Banquet Hall
- Al claims that both of the kids were conceived while he was watching TV in their bedroom. In different episodes, it was mentioned that Kelly was conceived in the Dodge.
- Al mentions that Kelly was conceived while he was watching Get Smart, but the show ended its original run in May of 1970, while Kelly's birthday is listed as November 27, 1971. Even if she was conceived during the final episode of Get Smart, it would rather impossible for Peggy to have been pregnant with Kelly for over a year and a half at the very least.
- It is possible that Kelly was conceived during a commercial block that aired during a local network syndicated rerun of Get Smart in early 1971. There is a record of super short sex sessions between Al and Peggy throughout the series so this makes sense.
|Top of the Heap Episodes|
|Top of the Heap • The Agony and the Agony • Behind the Eight Ball • Stocks and Bondages • |
The Last Temptation of Charlie • The Marrying Guy • Mona by Moonlight