Watching Too Much Television

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Aaron: A | Grade It Now!
Our (Crack) House

And speaking of points, our long national nightmare is finally over! Tony is once again wearing his robe, and all is right in the world. As a special thanks to the sixty-five percent of you who voted overwhelmingly for me to just "Stop with the damn math already" a few weeks ago, I'll just say that this week's StR value can only be calculated by taking the square root of 299,220,804 and dividing by pi. So there. Nevertheless, Tony leads Cousin Brian down into the basement, where he presents him with a very expensive watch in appreciation for suggesting the whole HUD scam in the first place. Brian is a bit taken aback, mostly because he never expected Tony to actually go through with it, but also because he's concerned about the potential impact it might have on the American taxpayers. "The American taxpayers pay for airport security," observes Tony, "and look how well that's going." Good point. Brian -- who is apparently quite easily tempted by anything shiny (up to and including the fabric of his suits and the sequined pasties on the girls down at the Bing) -- quickly overcomes his objections, and gratefully accepts the gift. Then Carmela yells down, and the boys are forced to pretend that Brian just came over to borrow some tools. Except they almost forget the actual tools, causing Tony to have to go back and grab a drill before they head upstairs.

Meanwhile, Carmela is once again primping in the mirror in anticipation of a visit from Furio. She's also in a much nicer outfit this time, all the better to contrast with how she dresses when she's not expecting him to stop by. When he arrives at the door, however, he refuses to come inside, claiming that the car has some sort of malfunction which requires him to keep his foot on the gas pedal. Carmela isn't sure what to make of that, especially since he clearly took his foot off the pedal to ring the doorbell, so she just maintains her artificially chipper tone and dips her head like a bird a few times. She also has no idea what to do with her hands while putting on a brave face, so they just sort of hang there in front of her. Finally Furio breaks the tension by turning to walk back to the car, and Carmela heads closes the door and looks worried. See? That was exceptionally well-acted by both principals, and yet I still don't buy it. I can't be the only one who feels this way, can I?

Back inside, Carmela catches Cousin Brian on the way out the door. She notices the drill, and asks if he's doing any work on the house. For the record, Cousin Brian is an incredibly bad liar. "Yeah, you know, uh, I'm sinking some anchors for, uh, a wall mirror," he says. "And then I'm building a guest house so Foreshadowing can come over and hang out with all my new mob buddies."

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