Freaks & Geeks
Noshing And Moshing

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Noshing And Moshing

Mr. and Mrs. Schweiber are at the dinner table. Neal is not there, though his creepy dummy Morty is. I'm struck anew by how closely Mr. Schweiber resembles Bill Clinton. The Schweiber parents mildly snipe at each other over a party they're giving. Then Neal comes in; his mom asks, "Do you want to tell your dad about your History test?" Neal received a D on it, for which Mr. Schweiber puts Neal down. Mrs. Schweiber points out that it's not the only bad grade he's received lately. She asks, "Do you think that maybe Morty is distracting you a little bit from your studies?" It certainly wouldn't surprise me if that were the case. If I had Morty in my bedroom, I'm sure I wouldn't be able to sleep a wink, which definitely would affect the rest of my life. After promising to try his hardest in school, Neal asks to be excused to watch Willie Tyler and Lester on Hollywood Squares. There are so many things wrong with that, I wouldn't even know where to begin.

Over at the Weir house, Dad is trying to skip out of the Schweibers' big annual bash. He asks, "What kind of doctor invites his patients over to listen to his dental jokes? It's sick!" Mom insists that they must go. Lindsay suggests that she not attend, but I guess Dad Weir wants to share the misery, and tells her, "I don't see why you should get out of it. He's your dentist, too." This prompts Lindsay to suggest switching dentists, an idea that appeals to her father. Mom Weir puts an end to the conversation by telling Dad that he has to go, and Lindsay that she is exempt.

At school, Neal opens his locker to reveal the foul dummy. Bill and I shriek simultaneously. Sam is surprised that Neal is now bringing Morty to school. Neal tries to glam it up by calling it a "figure" rather than a "dummy," but he's really not fooling anyone. Especially Bill, who says, "Tell it not to talk to me!" He's visibly disturbed by Morty, even though Neal is such a bad ventriloquist that it takes away some of the scariness of the dummy, or figure, or whatever the hell you want to call it. Sam asks Neal what he's rehearsing for, and Neal replies, "For life." He feels disillusioned by his father's infidelity; he says that he can no longer rely on his parents, and must take control of his own life. That's all very wise and insightful, except for the part where he claims he can make big money through Morty. Bill succinctly sums it up by saying, "Ventriloquism isn't funny." Amen, brother.

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