Ally Mcbeal s03e08 Episode Script

Blue Christmas

I am not about to sing at the Christmas party.
Oh come on, you sang at the bar last year, and you were great.
Really? Hello, totally awesome.
Also, when you get up onstage, you're in the spotlight, you become it.
People don't see you for what you really are -- at the Christmas party alone, dateless.
Well, there is that benefit.
Well, maybe we could ---- What? I saw the baby Jesus I saw it move.
Did he dance? Did you see that? No.
It moved! That baby moved! Oh my god! Ooga-chucka, ooga-chucka.
It's real! It's not that I oppose your singing.
It's just the point of the Christmas party is for people to enjoy themselves.
No, I can sing, Richard.
I have a voice.
I agree.
Your having a voice isn't my concern.
It's just the rest of us have ears.
Sing! Why not? All the world's your stage.
Elaine? Shh! He's such a good little eater.
Why do you still have him? I couldn't turn him in.
He ---- Oh, Elaine, you have to.
I-i-it's criminal.
It's ---- I want to keep him.
What?? There's a reason that I found him, Ally.
No, no, you can't just keep him.
There's somebody abandoned that baby.
I took him to a doctor.
He's completely fine.
Elaine, you have to notify the police.
== you could go to jail! What happens if I told the police? They'll put him to a foster home ---- They'll look for his mother.
Oh, which is worse.
To put him back to somebody abandoned him.
Elaine, Elaine, there is no choice.
You have to tell the police.
Okay, And, if you/I do that is there a way that I could still keep him? I doubt it, but But what? Well, by turning him in, he'll go right into social services, and that'll be it.
For you to have any chance ---- Well, she can't kidnap him.
I'm not saying kidnap.
But possession gives her standing to at least get into court.
What we need do You really ? Yes.
What we need do is notify the police and social services, as we petition for custody.
Any chance you could lactate? I beg your pardon? The standard will be best interest of the child.
On occasion, adoptive mothers have been known to produce milk.
If we can demonstrate that the child is bonded ---- Here, take it.
Come on.
Eh-eh-eh, pokeep, pokeep All right.
I can come back if ---- No.
It's okay.
Richard moved the Christmas party to the bar, due to the overflow.
So, if there's anybody you've invited, you need me to call? I didn't invite anyone.
I don't think I'm even going myself.
That would be a mistake.
Billy, you're feeling lonely enough as it is.
At least be around your friends.
What if she goes? Would that be so bad? My father and my mother split up, and she wouldn't take him back.
You know what he did? He just asked her out on a date.
Started over, in a way.
I don't think she'd agree to date me.
Yeah, maybe not.
But .
she might agree to a dance.
Even if just to avoid having things be awkward.
And then a dance, a touch.
Maybe things could start over.
I don't know.
Well, [if.]
it's important, it's important.
it isn't, it isn't.
Your Honor, I can appreciate her wanting to keep him.
In fact, we have a long waiting list of parents looking to adopt.
But she has no right to leapfrog to the top of the line.
The best interest of the child ---- Come on.
She doesn't even know how to fix the formula.
The baby has already begun to bond.
That's ridiculous.
And as a matter of public policy You know, one should be allowed to finish his sentences.
Your Honor, clearly there are other better options.
Pipe down, Mr.
McCabe! Mr.
Cage, you're suggesting what? Finders keepers? I'm suggesting there was a reason she found it in that manger.
She was meant to find it -- destined to be the parent.
Oh, please.
Oh, pipe down! He makes me repeat myself, Your Honor.
Cage All these studies have been coming out about early bonding.
It takes place in the early weeks.
It affects life-long abilities to trust.
Now, I've seen that baby in Elaine Vassal's arms, and it is where that baby was meant to be.
We don't even know if she's fit to be a parent.
Oh, come on.
That's an issue? Of course, it's an issue! Well, for that to be an issue, my client must have some standing here to be the parent.
Ha ha ha.
He just tricked me.
This is what he does, Your Honor -- he tricks.
McCabe, there's no controlling law here.
Certainly, if Ms.
Vassal had the baby a year, we'd consider her? But it's only been one night.
But the standard is the same -- best interest of the child.
It'll be much tougher for her to prove it, but I guess we have to give her a chance.
We'll have a hearing.
How's 2:00? Fine, Your Honor.
I'd like a little time ---- I'm allowing her to maintain custody pending the hearing.
And as long as she's the guardian ---- Well, 2:00 is fine.
Elliot and Elaine Vassal.
How does that sound? Hmm, you like the name "Elliot"? Oh you sweet, sweet baby.
I am sorry, I didn't see you.
You seem mesmerized.
You know, when I was a little girl, I used to dream about being a grownup.
In that dream, there was always a child -- not a husband.
I used to think: But that doesn't make sense.
And now it does? Yeah.
Now it does.
He's really real, isn't he? Elaine, he's really real.
But he's not really yours.
At least, not yet.
Me? How can I talk her out of it? I don't know, you've known her the longest.
Billy, she plans to sing something sexy.
Yeah, right.
I'm not kidding.
Elaine has her convinced.
Can you imagine? Next, we'll have Mary Tylor Moore doing porn! Hi.
You don't think I can be sexy, Richard? No, oh no, it's not that.
It's just uh you know, after seeing you, how could I ever, uh, fantasize over anyone else? I can be very sexy, Richard.
Ah Oh yeah You're so cuuute, aren't you? I put enough on, Nelle.
Well, you don't want him to get diaper rash? He's got enough on! You don't want any more powder, do you? Ha He peed me.
Oh funny! Well, he wanted more powder.
It's acidic.
It's burning my skin! We tried to tell her more powder, didn't ---- How do you like it? How much urine can one little baby have? Did he get my hair? What we need you to say is how the baby is better off with Elaine.
But I don't necessarily think that's true.
We don't need you to think it.
We need you to say it.
I don't know Wai-wait, wait, Mar-Margaret, it is a long shot for Elaine to be able to keep this child.
Everytime I testify, I end up being called a vicious lesbian.
Well, we need at least one medical opinion.
And you've done some work in this area, and you recently adopted.
How is that relevant? Well, you know what it's like to bond with your baby, y-you know It's from the baby side that counts, Ally, not the parent's.
How long do you think it took for your baby to bond with you? About a day.
So, just say that.
I'd be saying that more as a mother, than as a sociologist.
We'll take that.
Um they're having the firm Christmas party tonight.
Would you like to come, as my date? As your date? Yes.
Nothing is wrong with having a date, is there? Excuse me, my name is Janine Waller, I'm from Social Services, Child Welfare.
I'm looking for Renee Radish? Radick.
That's me.
Would you mind answering a few questions? They concern Elaine Vassal.
What do you want to know? Well, she's petitioning for custody of a child.
We need to be satisfied that she's fit to parent.
Uh, but, is anybody? I beg your pardon? Come on.
It's not like you need a license to raise children, though it's not a bad idea.
Anybody can be a parent as long as you can procreate.
Plus, you know, it takes a village.
Uh, how long have you known Ms.
Vassal? Oh, long time.
But before I get into that, while I have you -- it seems to me, some of the most irresponsible people are the girls, who let themselves get pregnant.
Talking about the teenagers, some using drugs.
Why does the law presume their automatic fitness to parent? Is it simply because the baby passes through their cervix on the way out? What kind of litmus is that? Tell me, while I have you.
There are no absolutes when it comes to bonding.
It can take weeks, it can happen instantly.
With both mother and child? The likelihood is, the baby hasn't bonded with Ms.
That's the likelihood.
But we can't rule out the possibility.
And do you have an opinion as to whether this baby should stay with this Vassal, versus being placed with another adopted family? That's easy.
He should stay with Ms.
Why? Because she seems to be a good mother, and from the baby's standpoint, the less disruption the better.
Babies don't like their world to change.
Disruption is not healthy.
And to take him from Ms.
Vassal, that would be a disruption.
This baby that we're talking about ---- His name is Elliot.
If he would leave Ms.
Vassal and be placed with another primary caretaker, he'd still be able to bond, wouldn't he? I would think so, yes.
The disruption you're talking about, is it something that would really harm the baby? It's hard to tell.
Let me ask it this way: Which is more important, leaving him with whoever's got him now, or providing him with the best caretaker? Providing him with the best caretaker ---- Thank you.
And by asking her on a date ? I wasn't saying, forgive me, but, hey, let's take baby steps and start over.
And she said no? She did.
I think we need to hear you say: "I was disrespectful to my wife.
" I was disrespectful to my wife.
I think we all need to acknowledge that when we kiss another woman, it is a betrayal of enormous depths -- leaving us in a black hole that we can't simply climb out by asking a spouse out on a date.
In fact, the asking of a date itself could have compounded the offense by trivializing it.
That's not that's not what I meant to do.
Billy, why did you kiss that woman? Because because I'm not good enough.
Not good enough for Georgia.
Whatever I do, she complains.
Even when we made love, I could hear Peggie Lee singing in my head.
Is that all there is? She's a glass-half-empty person who makes me feel like I drain the glass.
What does she expect? What can I do? What can you do? I don't know! She wants me to change, change, change.
And when I did, she goes off and sucks face with the father of one of my old girlfriends.
And when I get upset and fall off the fidelity wagon for a split second, she walks on the marriage like I'm the bad guy.
And when I go back groveling for a lousy date, she says no.
Not enough grovel for her, she wants more.
Well, you know what? I am not going to give her more.
I am not going to give her the continued satisfaction of being able to reduce me to the size of a bug, so she can crush me with the heel of her shoe.
I am sick of not being good enough! I am sick of being the poster boy for failure, which she does on purpose.
She tries to belittle me.
I know what she is.
I know what she is!!! Say it, Billy.
Say the word.
SHE'S A BITCH! Yeah! Bitch! Bitch! Bitch! Bitch! Bitch! I'm no expert on these men's groups, but they don't sound productive.
Actually, they are.
Stuff comes out of you you didn't know was there.
What came out of you? I don't want to get back with her, Sandy.
I feel guilty about being unfaithful, and I want to make the guilt go away.
But I really don't want to get back with Georgia.
Well, then you're where you want to be.
Congratulations! Sandy, would you like to go to the Christmas party with me? Billy, I work for you.
Plus, I think you should take a little time before you start dating again.
You're right.
Ally, the key is attitude.
Even more than movement, it's attitude.
I, I don't know.
Elaine, I ---- It's the right song for you, Ally.
It's soft, it's cute and sexy.
¢Ü Santa Claus Baby.
It's "Santa baby.
" Elaine, Ally, it's time! I never thought I wanted to be a mother.
But things are different now.
Such as? They can laser off stretch marks.
The sacrifices aren't as big.
Richard, can I have him? Sure.
Oh, ==.
I'd say he got you.
What's wrong with you! That is so funny! Now look what you did.
Oh, let me hold him.
I'm going to dress him.
He just had a bath.
Oh, let me do it.
Look at your naked little[body.]
What were you thinking when you lifted him out of the manger? Well, first, that he was beautiful.
Second, that he was mine.
Yours? I've held babies before.
I have nieces and nephews, I've held the infants of friends.
But this one -- I don't know why -- but it just hit me this wasn't somebody else's child, he was meant to be with me.
Elaine, you're a single working woman.
Are, are you going to be able to raise this child? Well, I'll have to cut back on work.
But I have a good savings.
I made a lot of money on my revolutionary Face Bra.
I'm sorry? It's a support ---- Eh-eh, okay, okay.
Um, so you are, uh, financially solvent? Oh, yes.
I am quite comfortable.
I can afford to work part-time.
Have you had any, uh, experience with children? Oh, I've spent a lot of time around kids.
I've baby-sat many times over weekends.
But if you're asking me,has anything in my life prepared me for this, I'd have to say "Not really.
" I mean, certainly nothing prepared me forhow I'd feel the first time that I held him -- and how I still feel.
I'm ready to raise this baby.
I've never been more.
I'm sorry I'm ready.
You didn't just invent Vassal? Well, I have several things in the works.
Including customized fluorescent condoms with little sayings? Yes.
They're not as popular as the Face Bra.
How many men have you slept with in the last year? Objection! Certainly her lifestyle is relevant.
We all have lives as single people.
But that doesn't mean you can delve ---- There is a difference between a past and a past.
The objection is sustained, Mr.
Don't go there.
I'm told, about a month ago, Mr.
Cage got some cappuccino foam on his nose, and rather than wipe it off with a tissue, you removed it by performing a sexual act on his nose.
Well, well, that was just you know, in fun.
In fun? What's a fluffer, Ms.
Vassal? Objection! I'd like some latitude here, as we all agree the welfare of a child is at stake.
Speed it up.
What's a fluffer? It's, um well ---- It's basically when one woman gets a man sexually revved up so he's able to perform with another woman.
Is that right? Something like that.
Something like that? Have you ever been Mr.
Cage's fluffer? Objection! There way one time when he was having a little trouble with Nelle.
Objection! I didn't know that he had planned to spank her! Y-Y-, but, Your Honor, this is way off base! Isn't it true, Ms.
Vassal, that you enjoy passing yourself off as the office slut? I do that in fun! You do it in fun? What a fun mom you'll make! Oh, by the way, the Face Bra you invented, you got sued by family members who said that you stole the idea, did you? That lawsuit was bogus, and it was dismissed! Just the same when your own family members believed you to be dishonest.
Didn't they? It's not over.
How did they get all that stuff? It had to be somebody in the firm.
There's no way ---- Let's just focus on our closing statement.
I'll take it.
What the hell did you say? I beg your pardon? I know DSS was here interviewing you, Richard.
What did you tell them? Or, was it you? I didn't talk to anybody.
And I, I didn't say anything negative.
I promise.
I don't believe you.
You two would just trash me for the sport! I'm sorry you feel that way, Elaine.
Well, well, the stuff they got.
Somebody in here was definitely talking it.
That, that "fluffer" thing even I didn't know about.
How's he doing? He's doing great.
I think he prefers me as his mother.
It was Renee.
What? When I went to see Georgia, DSS showed up at the office looking to talk to Renee.
I said she'd be a good mother, that's all.
Well, come on, Renee! Did you tell her ---- I didn't say anything.
Don't be accusing me! Well, the guy had facts, okay? He had the Face Bra, the custom condoms.
He had the facts.
How the hell did he get them? Well, don't be looking at me! I told her.
You?? I didn't slam her.
But she asked for both the positives and the negatives, I told her what I knew.
Why? Ally, it's about a child.
I'm not qualified to say who would be the best parent.
Neither are you.
The people at Social Services are trained to make this kind of call.
They have to have all the facts in order to do it.
Do you have any idea the damage you've done? It's not an advocacy thing here.
It's, it's, find the best place for the baby.
No one should be pulling punches.
I don't disagree with that.
But the, the problem isthat the people do treat this like an adversary system.
They do take sides and,and if a friend says anything at all negative, DSS, they're going to just multiply it by ten.
He likes it.
Look at that smile.
He likes it! It's gas.
No, it isn't.
The little guy likes the music.
Look at him.
Well, maybe you're right.
May I try? ¢Ü We got it together, didn't we? We've definitely got our things together, don't we, baby? My first, my last, my everything And the answer to all my dreams You're my sun, my moon, my guiding star My kind of wonderful, that's what you are Hey! What in God's name? The little guy likes to dance.
He just ate.
You'll make him sick! John, the clerk's office called you back in for closing statements.
Now? Well, she wants to rule by the end of the day.
We're not out to get Elaine Vassal.
Our intent here is to ensure the welfare of this baby, and we have concerns here.
The decision to raise a child -- it's enormous.
It's not something that happens when you find one like a lost kitten.
We look at Ms.
Vassal, and compare to other couples who have prepared a long time for this responsibility.
That she is a single woman -- yes, it's a factor.
Her lifestyle -- yes, it's a factor.
We're looking at a promiscuous person, an individual whose integrity has been called into question by her own family members; a woman who, when she found the child, failed to notify the authorities at first, as she was required to do by both law and morality.
Is Elaine Vassal a good person, a capable mother? I'm sure she might be.
But the undeniable truth for us is, we can do better by this child, and we should.
The undeniable truth is that Mr.
McCabe doesn't know the woman sitting over there.
I do.
And I can tell you that, if I had a child, I for some reason had to place himin somebody else's care; not only would I go to Elaine, I would probably go to her first.
Because she is loving, giving, unselfish, highly moral, and more than anything else, she's a caretaker.
She lives to take care of others,even when they don't want it.
And as for family members doubting her integrity, well, that happened when a cousin made up a lieto try to steal her Face Bra.
It's in the court records.
If DSS had done any research, integrity would have prevented them from even raising it as a point.
And as for her alleged promiscuity, well, most if it's talk.
And the rest, well, it happened before she became a mother.
She's a mother now, judge.
And if you don't believe me, well, just look at little Elliot.
Look into his eyes.
See how safe he feels.
He knows who his mother is.
Now I realize that you have to weigh all of this and make a very difficult decision.
I, I just hope that, as you struggle with that, you keep in mind that Mr.
McCabe doesn't know Elaine Vassal.
If he did, there'd be no argument before this court.
Baby-sitting? Uh, yeah.
Elaine went to the bathroom.
Want me to hold him? No, I'm okay.
I don't mind.
Really, I'm fine.
What is it about babies? Is it just because they're so innocent? Maybe.
Maybe we project all our hopes, our dreams You know, seven years ago, I I would have thought this would be us, Billy.
But a lot's happened.
You've bleached your head And you're going on stage, suddenly aspiring to be Eartha Kitt.
I can be sexy.
Ally, you really shouldn't Never mind.
What did happen to us? I don't know.
I can't believe she's singing! It's the new Ally.
I'm bored.
she's good.
Why did she ask me to bring Elliot? This can't be good.
We'll know it in a second.
As I said at the onset, there are no legal absolutes when it comes to these kinds of decisions.
The welfare of the child is the controlling consideration.
And while I have no doubt to believe that Ms.
Vassal is capable of raising a child, the customized condoms, the Face Bras, the embracing of "slut" as part of your self image, it makes me gulp.
In cases where it comes down to character, and judges can't really lay claim to knowing the person involved, we end up having to guess.
And for me, when I make my guess, I look to the people who do know the person.
The court has no reason to doubt the word or the integrity of Ms.
And if the petitioner lives up even slightly to the endorsement offered by her lawyer and, yes, admittedly her friend, I have very little reason to doubt that Ms.
Vassal will make an exceptional mother.
Petition for temporary guardianship granted.
Oh my god, oh my god I second that.
I third it.
What happens now? We go home.
Oh my god.
You did it, Ally.
It was your closing.
I, I st-, I still can't believe it.
Elaine is a mother! Where is she? She's upstairs.
It was, it was too loud for the baby.
Look at that! Okay.
Out with the old and then, in with the new yes, there you go.
Doesn't that feel better? I'm onto your tricks now.
It's my latest invention.
I'll split the profits with you, 70/30.
Yeah, you little guy Ms.
Vassal, my name is Lynn Hart.
That's my son.
Breathe deep.
Jus-just take deep breaths.
Do you still feel like you're going to faint? A little.
She's a single mother, goes to Emerson.
Evidently she suffered some form of post-partum when she put him in the manger.
She actually watched you find him.
She's been watching you since.
She's parked outside your apartment.
She was even in court.
What happens? Oh no.
If she moves back in with her parents, and they assume guardianship with her That's it? Just like that? She has to give him back? No, she doesn't.
I was anticipating this.
There was a case just decided in June in Massachusetts, Youmans vs.
Basically, it says when a parent voluntarily terminates guardianship -- and abandonment equals voluntary termination -- the de facto parent, which Elaine is, can't have her rights taken away.
What? That case involves an older child with more emotional ties.
But the law's the same.
You're Elliot's de facto parent right now.
She voluntarily terminated her rights.
We can fight.
I want to fight.
I'm not saying we'll win.
I want to fight.
I'll put the whole firm on it.
You don't have to just give him back.
What's the name of the case? I'll get on Westlaw.
Youmans vs.
May, may I have a moment alone with Elaine, please, and Ally? This new case, it, it does give us a chance.
But I suspect, they'll use the post-partum to say she didn't act voluntarily.
And even if You're looking at a long fight.
If we lose, the disruption in Elliot's life that He'll be older, it'll be a lot more detrimental.
If we win, you'll still be faced with one day having to tell him that you went to court to take him away from his biological mother.
Biological doesn't make her a better parent.
Clearly not.
But see, best interest of the child? I, I don't know if it's in Elliot's best interest to fight this fight.
If that woman were unfit, that'd be one thing.
But, you see, if it's more about your wants then, it's selfish.
If she were a fit parent, she wouldn't have dropped him in a manger.
That's the argument.
But my sense is, we're not dealing with bad people here.
Elaine, whatever you want to do, this firm stands ready to support you.
What's his name? Alan.
Alan Matthew Hart.
How do I know that you won't abandon him again? Well I didn't really abandon him this time, not totally.
I was all set to go right back and take him when I saw him in your arms.
And I Something hit me that he was better off.
But I can't go on living without my son, Ms.
And, um I'm getting help for my depression problems.
I'm just I'm so sorry for causing you this hurt.
I love you.

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