Saracen house. Henry comes home; Matt asks his dad brightly how his day at work was. Henry's got the loosened-tie look going, and he seems pretty deadened. Matt looks after his father with concern as he goes to wash up.
Dusk. Matt is sitting on the front stoop of the little shotgun house. The light in this scene is beautiful. Julie walks up and asks him what he's doing. He says he's just sitting there, wishing that Arnett loses so they get to go to the playoffs so that he doesn't have to spend every day of his life "wonderin' 'what if' as I punch in at the feed store." Julie suppresses a smile at Matt's overwrought Springsteen fantasy, before asking, "The feed store?" Zach Gilford does a really nice subtle turn from "pity party" to "laughing at myself." He asks Julie what she's carrying, and we see she's got multiple containers in her arms. Her mom has made a bunch of casseroles and frozen them for the Saracens. Which is no small thing to do, expense or time wise. It's so sweet. I need to get out of the city. Low angle shot as she gets on the stoop with him
Matt asks if he's so pathetic he deserves casseroles, and Julie tells him that he just does so much, she thought it would help out. They are both on the stoop, hunched over their legs, and something about the way they sit there together, supporting one another makes me want to stand up and start belting out "Summer of '69." It's so iconic, the stoop, the crickets, the train in the distance, Matt's sweatshirt, Julie's One Stars, the hose curled haphazardly in the front yard; I want to frame a still of this shot and organize an art show around it titled "New American Gothic." I also want another glass of wine.
Matt pauses before telling Julie that he doesn't know what he was expecting having his dad back. Julie suggests his dad just needs to settle in. Matt says that it seems the more he settles in the more uncomfortable he gets. Matt says he wanted his dad to want to be home, to not just be home. He continues, realizing that his dad is good at being in the army, and that now he's home being a dad he has to "wake up every morning and sell cars for Buddy Garrity." He snarls that "Buddy Garrity" in a perfect utterance of subtle disgust. Matt realizes he can't take it personally that his dad isn't happy. Au contraire, mon sweetiepie! He's your father. And if takes scraping the saliva off of Buddy Garrity's wet chin for him to take care of you and get a paycheck, he does that and he doesn't make you feel bad for him having to do that. Julie tells Matt that he can get angry, but Matt won't: "He's trying. What else can you really ask of anyone?" Julie leans in and they smooch. And then I die.