Opposites Distract

Episode Report Card
Heathen: B- | Grade It Now!
It's not whether you win or lose, but how you shave the poodle

Cut to Mr. Clean, who is bowling. Mike walks up to the burly man and calmly starts singing "Tonight, I Celebrate My Love For you." He's wretchedly off-key, but with a pleasant expression he serenades an increasingly alarmed Mr. Clean as Ed giggles in the background. Sarah, the baby, stares at her crooning father as though she already understands genetics and its cruel realities. Mike pauses briefly at "When I make love you," but chokes it out anyway. Phil sidles up to Ed and notes that Carol is calling, which prompts Ed to hand off the baby and sprint for Ms. Vessey's squirting pipes. Shrugging, Mike keeps singing for kicks.

Classical music plays softly as Ed inhales Carol's pot roast. Lame marriage joke. Carol thinks Ed is putting off dealing with her plumbing problems, so he grins and they tromp downstairs. The floor is still flooded. "I've increased my homeowner's insurance so I can fully enjoy your work," she says. Ed looks uncomfortable, and offers to let Carol out of the bet. A gloating Carol refuses. A duck swims past waving a sign that says, "Predictable 3:13!" Rock music kicks off a montage of Ed expertly repairing the leak, manipulating the wrench like it's the law, or something. The lyrics to the background song say stupid things like, "See me now like I am, not in the rose-colored sham" and whatnot. Finished, Ed holds the wrench-qua-sword and smiles proudly. Carol's blown away by Ed's masculinity, and I confess, so am I. Ed could plumb my pipes anytime. It turns out he was a plumber's apprentice during law school, which explains that all-important errant comma. "You're a plumbing hustler?" Carol asks, stunned. Ed grins and hands Carol a prepared statement. They leave.

Outside at night, Carol sets the wooden soapbox down on the pavement and stands atop it. Ed tsks that they aren't in the precise center of town. "This is Main Street!" Carol exclaims. "You can't get more central than that." Oh, Carol, never question the show's titular character, especially not one as wily as our Ed. He's like a fox, only completely different. Ed reminds her of an orienteering project they completed in sixth grade, during which they found a different spot that serves as Stuckeyville's midpoint. Carol is stunned not only that Ed is correct, but also that Ed admits to remembering that one thing out of his entire academic career. She is beginning to remember why she never dated him. The two of them swap "charming" banter reflecting her hesitation to embarrass herself. Delicately crafted by the best wordsmiths two pennies, a Twix, and some Vienna sausage can buy, the script reads, "I can't." "Can." "Can't." "Can." Genius.

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