American Gothic (1995) s01e04 Episode Script

Damned If You Don't

It's clear, come on.
six and seven and eight and nine and ten.
Oly oly oxen free.
Caleb.
I'm not laughing.
Come on, y'all, where are you? Sutpen's gonna get you.
Sutpen's gonna get you.
Sutpen's gonna get you, Boone.
Mama.
How long is dinner gonna be? I'm thawing the chops right now.
There's corn to think about.
Maybe a fresh garden salad.
How would that strike y'all? Honey, we don't know about all that.
We just wanna know when we'll eat.
If you'd fix the electric so I could do more than one thing at a time.
Damn those juvenile delinquents.
What's going on out there? Come on, kids, I'm not gonna scold you.
I can hear you.
Sked! We just don't want to see anybody getting hurt.
One of these days, I gotta take all the doors off these old things.
Good idea, Carter.
That is about the worst thing that could happen in this world.
A child trapped in an icebox.
Hello, Sheriff.
Yes, sir.
Every parent's nightmare, losing a child.
What is it, Lucas? No, it's just that you remember when there was that unpleasantness with Wash Sutpen's little girl, don't you, Carter? Yeah, sure.
How could I forget what you done for me? Glad your memory serves you, my friend.
Then you haven't forgotten about your part of the bargain.
I guess I knew a payback was coming.
What do I owe you, Sheriff? I'm not sure.
Know what? I know.
I could use another girl around the office.
You know, making the coffee, doing the filing, being my little gofer.
How old is your Poppy now? She just turned 15 last month.
Darn.
Child has to be Then there's Jimmy Lee Branson's daughter.
She just turned I brought a parental consent form.
And don't you worry.
I'll personally take her under my wing.
Now, you take your time, Carter.
I won't need it till Friday.
Tomorrow? I tell you what.
I'll give you till midnight.
You made a deal.
Now you gotta live by it.
How much is the rent? $550 a month.
And it's got AC? That it does.
Although all utilities are not included.
I'll be leaving town for a spell, so you'll be No, that's fine.
You got a deal.
Hello? Hello, Gail.
Hi, Barton.
You got my message? Yeah, and I'm not too thrilled.
I need you back here on the city desk.
I know.
I modemed you that welfare piece that I owed you and I'm down here.
I'm working on something.
You gotta cut me some slack, okay, Barton? Something's going on down here.
No, I gotta call you back.
And what will your project be for the science fair, Boone? Me and my daddy are gonna show how come venison tastes best if you get a good clean head shot and don't ruin it.
Caleb, would you like to tell us about your project? Mine's about weather.
That's a little bit vague.
What kind of weather? Violent weather that changes quick and destroys things.
Good.
Caleb Temple: weather.
And remember the rules, people.
All materials for your project must be common household items.
No buying stuff at the hobby store.
Caleb, honey? Ma'am? Everyone else will be bringing their parents with them to the science fair so if you'd like to bring someone with you, say, Sheriff Buck, that'd be fine.
I'm sure he'd be more than happy to help you with your weather project.
If my daddy was still alive, I wouldn't have any help and I don't need none, now he's dead.
Hello? Anybody here? Hold on.
I'm coming.
It's a bit underpowered, to my way of thinking, but it's nice.
My pony's fine.
It's my air conditioner that needs work.
Like the sign says, we fix anything.
It's probably the compressor or the relay.
We'll get it so you're freezing to death in no time at all.
How much is that gonna be? You're gonna have to talk to Mr.
Bowen.
He takes all the money.
I just do the work, you know how it is.
You must be Gail Emory.
How do you know? Some people match names to faces.
I match them to the cars.
My Mustang? No, this wagon.
I remember when it came in.
The boss tried to sell it to Stevie Broadbent but Stevie thought it was jinxed on account of the way your parents passed on.
Can I talk to your boss? I'm the boss.
No, no.
I mean, when my parents' car came in.
That was Wash Sutpen.
He's long gone.
He's dead? He is He's unavailable.
Hey, if you're looking for a car, I got a really nice '78 Monaco.
No.
Did you deposit the day's receipts? What there was of it.
What about TJ? Remember to pay him? Course I did.
"Mr.
Fixit" will you please take a look at this wiring? Yes, sir, every parent's nightmare.
Your part of the bargain.
How old is your Poppy? I brought a parental consent form.
I'll personally take her under my wing.
That's midnight tomorrow.
Bye, Daddy.
Bye, Mama.
Where do you think you're off to? The library, Daddy.
Not tonight.
Not a chance.
But it's Friday night.
It's not like I'm going out to drink beers.
She's got a point there, Daddy.
I wouldn't say it if there wasn't a reason.
We'll make it up to you, sweetie pie.
All right.
What has gotten into you, Carter, tonight? You're as jumpy as a toy poodle.
Nothing.
It's nothing to worry about.
What is that, Carter? What? This? Oh, it's nothing.
It's something the Sheriff wants, that's all.
Sheriff Buck? What does he want? He offered Poppy a job after school.
That's a news item.
How come you kept it all to yourself? I've got my reasons.
Later, Carter.
You made a deal.
Now you gotta live by it.
I'll give you till midnight.
Etta? Etta? Etta.
Etta.
What are you doing down here in the middle of the night? Just trying to stay ahead of things.
You know how the laundry piles up.
Laundry's like death and taxes, Etta.
We sure could use a brighter light down here, Daddy.
Etta! Hold on, Etta.
I'm coming.
Need some help there, Carter? Lucas, what are you doing here? What are friends for, Carter, if not a bit of illumination in times of darkness? Plus, we had a deadline.
Midnight, remember? Etta's hurt bad.
Not that bad, Carter.
Two hairline fractures in her ankle, dislocated hip, shock to the heart.
But Etta's got a strong heart.
We hope.
There are two hairline fractures in the ankle here.
And you've dislocated your right hip joint.
Plus a shock to the heart.
That right? That's right.
You have a strong heart, though, Mrs.
Bowen.
You should be out of here in the morning.
Damn that Buck.
I should have known.
Should have known what? Nothing.
Forget it.
You're saying the Sheriff did this? I don't know.
But he's always there when trouble starts.
Sounds like a mutiny.
You won't find no mutiny here, Sheriff.
Not after all you've done for Carter.
What do you want? Just paying a courtesy call, Harvard.
I don't suppose they taught you that up north.
Then do Mrs.
Bowen a courtesy.
Make it brief.
Carter.
I just want to say I'm sorry about all this, Lucas.
Me, too, Carter.
I was kind of surprised when you didn't make that deadline.
Look, let's forget about Poppy.
I understand.
I've got something else for you now.
Anything, Lucas.
Just tell me.
I got this friend of mine coming in tomorrow on the 5:42 out of Columbia and I was hoping you could pick him up for me.
I got this Chamber of Commerce meeting That's it? Why didn't you say so? Heck, I'd be glad to do it for you, Lucas.
And I knew I could count on you, Carter.
You just tote him back to your place and I'll swing by and get him when I get a chance, okay? You bet you, Lucas.
It's a done deal.
Hi, Caleb.
What are you trying to do? Make a tornado, but this dang thing ain't worth a dang.
I got a book on tornadoes and freak storms you can borrow.
I don't want a book.
I want a project that works.
Boy's right.
Any sissy can do a book report.
You spying on me? Heck, no, that ain't my style.
What's the trouble, bub? I'm trying to make a tornado chamber, but it looks like I ain't getting very far.
It's a sorry tornado that comes out of a blender unless you're making good old Doc Crower a frozen daiquiri.
A what? Never mind.
Tell you what, get a sheet of plexiglas, big bunch of dry ice and one of them one-horse motors.
Then you got yourself a tornado.
That's fine, Caleb, but you need to know why things are what makes them work.
It's not as much fun, but it's what separates the men from the boys.
You need that book, you just holler.
All right.
Here, son.
You go out and buy yourself what you need.
I can't.
It's against the rules.
Against the rules for a fellow to help a boy with his homework? I'm gonna have to have a little talk with Ms.
Coombs.
Look out.
Mommy.
Honey, take this.
Quick, hide it.
Mommy, is everything okay? Where's the fire, Ms.
Emory? Ms.
Emory? Ms.
Emory? Are you following me around, ma'am? Yeah, right.
No, really, I come out here on a 6-13 and here you are.
Now, maybe I'm paranoid, but I think that you're watching me.
I think you're flattering yourself.
So, what's a 6-13? Report of an intruder, stealing stuff.
I didn't steal anything.
Did I say you did? Although the junkyard is closed, so technically, you are intruding.
Look at that.
They match your fair complexion perfectly.
Thanks.
They make me sneeze.
They're not for you, anyhow.
Poor Carter Bowen's wife got quite a shock.
I'm sure she'll appreciate them.
Are you hiding something? No.
Come on, now, Ms.
Emory.
There's no perjury out here.
What could I possibly be hiding from you? Your true feelings, perhaps? Who is that, Daddy? Wash Sutpen.
A man I knew a long time ago.
You mean, "Sutpen the junkman, something in his head"? That one? I'll be damned.
Wash, we weren't expecting seeing you until 1999 or so.
Sheriff Buck pulled a few strings.
Here I am.
Damn, you look the same.
You truly do.
How'd you do it? Prison food, Carter.
And a clear conscience.
Now you, on the other hand The cares of family life, you know how it is.
Yeah, I remember.
Is that little Poppy? This is Wash Sutpen, my old boss.
Something I made for you on the inside.
My, I had no idea so much time had passed.
Really? It's for me? Say thank you, Poppy.
Thank you.
It's a little young for you, but like I said time goes by a lot faster out here.
We gotta get going.
Remember, your mama's laid up at home.
Good to see you out, Wash.
Good, Carter? It's a good deal better than that.
It's called living.
Why won't you tell me who's coming for supper? Now, Etta, the point of a surprise is surprise.
I don't want you to think I'm not grateful.
Those flowers are so beautiful they just brighten up the whole house.
You hear that, TJ? Maybe someday you'll have a house like this.
Maybe Carter will give it to you as a wedding present.
Yeah, when pigs fly.
Hi, Mama.
Lucas Buck, is that Wash Sutpen? Hasn't aged a day, has he? Don't know how he does it.
I don't want that man in my house.
Now, that's hardly taking an enlightened view of rehabilitation.
I promised Lucas.
It's just for supper.
Carter, I am not happy about this.
If you say he's okay, then he's okay.
He won't be with you more than a couple of days until I get him settled over in Goat Town.
You didn't say nothing about him staying.
I'm sorry, Carter.
Is someone using your extra room? Well, no.
All right, then.
Another problem solved.
With Etta laid up, you can probably use the extra help anyway.
Wash Sutpen ain't no freeloader.
You know, it's my job to keep an eye on parolees in Trinity.
So let's enjoy ourselves while we're at it.
There's baby backs with all the fixings and a bucket of frosties in the kitchen.
You just set right there and let me get it for you.
I can get it myself, or my husband can.
Let me earn my keep.
It's been 17 years since I've had the privilege of waiting on a lady.
For me, I would like a little something.
A plate with all the fixings and an icy cold beer coming up.
Thank you kindly.
But hold the beer.
I'm on Darvon.
Can I ask a question? Go right ahead.
What's it like to kill a man? Poppy, he don't wanna talk about that.
Voilá.
It's the pig picking cake old Mrs.
Eanes used to make.
She's dead, you know.
Sure ain't nothing like pig picking cake.
I don't mind talking about it, ma'am.
It's a fair question.
Didn't feel good or bad.
I was merely protecting my family.
Against who? Fellow who was taking liberties with my daughter.
Turned out it was the wrong man, though.
She was smart and pretty, just like you.
Carter sure thought so.
No, I didn't.
Your daddy used to work for Mr.
Sutpen right about the time all this was happening.
Before he met your mama he had something of a crush on that Anyway, everybody deserves a second chance.
That's right.
Everybody deserves a second chance.
So what happened next? I lost everything.
My wife, my business and my daughter.
Who'd like some whipped cream? Hey! You're just in time.
Am I? Maybe I'm too late.
What are you talking about? I'm just getting it going.
You're going the wrong way.
It's just a science project.
Five, four, three two, one.
Stand back.
Caleb.
Tornado time.
Dang! Would you look at that, Merly? That little toy is growing on you.
I was just thinking.
About what? About you, protecting your family like that.
That was heroic.
Too bad I shot the wrong man, but well Did you find the secret yet? There's a secret? Yeah.
Come, sit here.
Where's the secret? I'll show you.
You smell nice.
You didn't tell me what it's for the little compartment.
You already know what it's for.
I'm gonna go to bed now.
The secret to crabbing is to be real gentle.
That's what my granddaddy used to say.
He was a professional.
Professional what? Crabber.
What about your daddy? Was he a crabber? No.
He was a newspaperman.
I'd rather go crabbing than deliver the papers.
He was an editor, and my mom was his editor-in-chief.
They worked hand in hand until the day they died.
How'd they die? There was a fire in the printing room.
Was it an accident? I don't know.
I'm not sure.
You know, maybe someday you could help me find out.
Why me? Because you're my cousin.
Because you know how to ask all those tough questions.
Maybe someday I'll be a newspaper reporter.
Maybe you will.
Hey.
Hey.
You got one.
Oh, he's a nice one.
Good job.
Well, thank you.
Hello, Mr.
Sutpen.
Brought you something, being as it's so hot.
Thank you.
I've always liked these better than those ones that you gotta push up and the paper gets all sticky.
My friend Lois, she likes the ice You'll feel the breeze on your skin better if you're still.
Really? That way you feel the completeness of it all.
The cool wind blowing over your body.
The sound of a wind chime tinkling from far away.
Close your eyes.
Now open your mouth just a little bit.
Keep your eyes closed, because this is the best of all.
That's nice.
Hey, Carter.
I'm gonna go see if Mama needs anything.
You want some lunch? No.
Where'd that come from? Sheriff helped me.
I see.
It's very impressive.
Yeah, it is.
Did you get that book that I left you? "Bernoulli's Principle.
" Even if I did read this thing to the beginning to the end I still couldn't have made that thing.
Maybe not.
But at least you'd understand why it works.
That man spent his entire life trying to explain things that couldn't be explained, Caleb.
I'm sure it wasn't easy.
But nothing worthwhile ever is.
Maybe I'll take a look at it.
Couldn't hurt.
And then maybe you could explain some of that to me.
Got you now, girl.
Oh, you scared me to death.
I'm sorry.
What are you two doing down there? Nothing, Daddy.
You go on in the house.
You get on back to the house.
Go on! We were just swimming.
Yeah, you was just swimming.
We were just swimming.
Damn.
This is a fish stick.
How you been, Carter? Not very well, Lucas.
It's Sutpen.
He's been worrying little Poppy.
Well, she is a healthy-looking girl.
Probably got a lot of time on her hands, too.
She's only 15.
Sit down, Carter.
Order the fish sticks.
Excuse me.
Sheriff the thing is, I come upon them swimming.
I want him gone.
You can't arrest a man for swimming, not even in Trinity.
But, Lucas But nothing.
I offered my help, you rejected it.
I wanted to take Poppy under my wing, you wouldn't have it.
I guess it's time for a father to do what he's gotta do.
Wouldn't you say? That was very informative, Boone.
Caleb, you ready? This here is a tornado chamber.
It's gonna show you how a funnel cloud forms.
See? He's a real corker, isn't he? Put that together all by himself.
This ain't right.
Sure it is, boy.
You're doing fine.
No, sir.
Ms.
Coombs? I bought this here tornado chamber.
And I'm disqualifying myself from the science fair.
She said you couldn't do that.
Well, I'm surprised at you, Caleb Temple.
Whatever possessed you to cheat? Caleb, forget about the equipment.
That's not important.
Tell them about Bernoulli's principle.
Who the heck is Bernoulli? Bernoulli's principle says the inside of a tornado has very low air pressure.
The pressure is differential is what causes all the damage.
Weather can be determined by analyzing the barometric change as the temperature drops.
So open your windows when there's a tornado warning or your house could explode from inside and out.
What the hell are you doing up? Can't sleep.
You? I'd sleep fine if you'd just get the hell back where you came from.
I ain't going back there, Carter.
I done my time.
You touch that little girl again, you gonna wish you was back in solitary.
You better get some rest, friend.
You're coming unglued.
Are you ever coming to bed? Not tonight, I ain't.
Caleb.
You did real good.
I'm proud of you.
We're all proud of you.
You was there? And Mama? We were all there, Caleb.
I knew it.
I could feel it, Merlyn.
I was happy.
Poppy? Poppy! Poppy, open up in there! Poppy! Etta? Etta.
Etta! I just can't get my head around what's happened.
Poor old Mr.
Bowen.
I know, son.
It's probably time you started thinking about moving up in the world.
I can't stay here.
That's where you're wrong.
Trinity needs things repaired.
Hell, we need a "Mr.
Fixit.
" You could start your own business.
I ain't got that kind of money.
Now, a low interest loan could be arranged particularly if something came on the market at a good price.
I always wanted to own my own business.
That's the spirit.
Down the road, maybe I'll ask you for a small favor.