You ever hear the old adage about how if you show the audience the gun in act one, you better have it go off in act three? Well, David Milch apparently hasn't. Or he scoffs at your long-held notions of narrative. Because he shows guns aplenty in this episode, and the only one that goes off is the one Kai fires into her CD player, even though it can't stop "In Your Eyes" from playing out of it. Because you cannot kill Peter Gabriel.
So the first gun is pulled by Vietnam Joe, who waves it in direction of the VFW Hall bartender he presumes put John up to last week's stunt with the stabbing and the not dying and the miraculously healing. But the bartender did not put John up to that stunt, which makes Joe think that there may be something a might bit other-worldly about our mysterious visitor from the Buckeye State.
The other gun belongs to Cissy, and she produces it to ward off Shaun's mom, who was that thin, blonde-haired woman who showed up at the end of last week's episode. Shaun's mom is a porn star, you see, and she left Shaun on Cissy's doorstep before hightailing it off to the San Fernando Valley -- this has left Cissy understandably perturbed, so she spends most of the episode setting a new record for most screaming by a series regular in an hour-long show, eclipsing the standard set by Amy Brenneman in the second episode of Judging Amy. It is possible that I just made that record up.
Shaun's Mom the Porn Star just wants to clap eyes on her son, and she finds an unlikely ally in Butchie, who convinces his mother that the Porn Star means no harm. Cissy finally agrees to let this mother-and-child reunion take place, though perhaps she was too hoarse from all the shouting to register any dissent. Shaun's Mom the Porn Star also finds a very likely ally in Linc, who's in the market for a new Gal Friday now that Cass has taken in John as a boarder.
Speaking of Cass and John, they spend the day in Balboa Park, filming what promises to be the most pretentious, meandering documentary to ever get rejected by IFC. In that sense, Cass's movie has very in common with this episode, which squanders all the momentum and goodwill of the past few weeks with this plodding, rudderless offering.
Previously, on John From Just Outside West Covington, Kentucky: Bill's testicles were on display for the entire neighborhood. Oh, and John went missing -- well, "got stabbed" would be more accurate, and "got miraculously healed by Vietnam Joe, who was more than a little freaked out by this turn of events" would be more accurate still. Mitch slept with Cass and then levitated -- we'll let you decide which is more disturbing. Reporters skulked around the surf shop trying to get more dirt on Shaun's miraculous recovery; shockingly, Cissy reacted poorly to this. On orders from his bird, Bill hung out with Freddy the Drug Dealer. A mysterious blonde woman showed up looking for Butchie Yost. Also, Cass kicked out Mitch to take in John, which caused Linc to fire her, and Mitch went crawling back to Cissy. So now you're up to date on who's aligned with whom.
Credits. Everybody says that there's nobody meaner than the little old lady from Pasadena. But obviously, they haven't meant the screaming surf matron of Imperial Beach.
Morning breaks in Imperial Beach, with Cass waking up in her hotel room. The good news is that there's no longer an aging, mumbo-jumbo-spouting hipster in her bed; the bad news is there is a fully-clothed Morrissey lookalike lying on her floor, with his eyes wide open and staring at the ceiling. Between this and John's non-sleeping over at Butchie's place, I think we've established that he does not engage in what you humans call bed rest. A flicker of regret for taking in this weirdo flashes across Cass's face...
...though really, it shouldn't, given the alternative. The Yosts are lying in bed when the phone rings. Though the phone is on his side of the bed, Mitch looks over at Cissy expectantly. One ringie-dingie. Two ringie-dingies. Three ringie-dingies...finally, Cissy rolls over Mitch to answer the phone. Must be their thing. In my house, that thing would be called "The Last Thing I Ever Did Before My Wife Hit Me With The Sock Stuffed With Oranges." "You know I want to tell you some things if you'd want to listen," Mitch says, as Cissy is picking up the phone. Excellent timing, my man. Seriously, just some top-drawer husband behavior there. Tune in next week, when Mitch offers Cissy some helpful cooking tips right after she serves up dinner. Cissy opts not to hear the wondrous things Mitch has to say in order to continue answering the phone call. She bolts out of bed: "Stop. Shut up. Whatever you want, you're not getting it." Boy, someone hates telemarketers. "Wherever you are," Cissy continues, "fucking stay there, and leave us alone!" Boy, someone really hates telemarketers. As Cissy hangs up, we hear a car engine starting up just outside the Yost home. Cissy runs outside the house just in time to see the mysterious blonde lady in her fancy red sports car, executing the most spiteful three-point turn in automotive history before speeding off. "Fourteen years late," Cissy mutters, returning to the house, as Shaun comes out of his room wondering who just peeled out in front of the house. By that cryptic "fourteen years late" remark, kiddo, I'd guess it was your birth mama.