Black-ish (2014) s08e12 Episode Script

If a Black Man Cries in the Woods…

1 The success of a Black man can be measured in many ways grip strength, growing a beard that connects, and providing for and protecting your family, which has never been easy in this country.
From the time we got here, a man's family could be separated and sold.
You could be harassed, driven off your land.
Dignity was never guaranteed, and Lord knows the world didn't make it easy on me.
But I did okay.
Because I believe the truest measure of a Black man's success comes from the success of his own children.
My son has it all, and I like to think I'm responsible for at least most of it.
Hey, Pops.
You know when they say "Casual Fridays," they don't mean that casual.
I'm taking a sick day.
You're sick? Oh, regular sick, or slide my meals under the door for the next 10 days sick? I'm not actually sick, Pops.
But if you don't use your days, they go to waste.
" Olivia.
Hey, Pops.
Aw, hell.
We got one mid-life crisis and one love-sick chump.
Looks like my work is never done.
That's it.
Grab enough underwear to get through the weekend and your alcoholic beverage of choice.
We're taking a man trip.
All right.
You all about ready to go? - Mm-hmm.
- Yeah, we're just finishing up these sandwiches real quick.
How many do you think we need? Well, let me see how many you got.
- We got one, two - Uh-huh.
$20 worth of prosciutto just gone, but okay.
This ain't no picnic.
We're gonna live off the land.
Look, sometimes we men have to go back to basics fresh air, hunt your own food, build your own fire.
So I'm taking you two to a little cabin I know.
Come on, we got to go.
We don't want to be on motorcycles when it's dark.
Motorcycles? Pops.
That sounds a little dangerous.
No, it's a lot dangerous, and that's the point.
By the time we return, our senses will be honed to a razor-sharp point.
Man trip! - Yeah! - Yeah! Man trip! Grab your gear while you can! You're leaving with ten fingers and ten toes.
Can't guarantee you're coming back the same way.
This is, uh, probably a good time to tell you guys I don't know how to ride a motorcycle.
So, I organized my college list by rank, state, and weather.
You know, you can just say, "Mom, I don't want to go to Brown.
" - I can take it.
- I don't want to go to Brown.
Hey, Jack.
Where's your college list? Uh, just cut and paste my name onto Diane's list.
We'll be good.
Uh, that's not how it goes, friend.
But I'm sure we can look at my top colleges and find community colleges within a five-mile radius.
That works for me, too.
Ah, you know, you guys don't have to go to the same school.
What? - Yo, Mom's got jokes.
- Yeah.
No, no, I'm not joking.
I know you guys are used to doing everything together, but I think college is an opportunity for you guys to see what it's like without each other.
Yeah, no, I don't know, Mom.
It just, uh It might be easier if we just go to the same school.
- Yeah.
- Maybe.
Um, okay, so maybe I can go to, uh, Spellman.
That looks good.
That's an all-women's school, so - I am not mad at that.
- Y Oh.
I'm gonna go apply right now.
After a motorcycle ride where I found out being that close to the ground gives my grandson anxiety, we were finally here.
Ah, nature.
It might be great just to leave it all behind, you know? Just a man in the woods finding himself.
Ooh, ooh! Take a picture of me chopping wood.
I'm-a post it on Instagram to flex on Olivia.
I got you.
I should have seen that coming after the sandwiches.
You need to get over that girl, Junior.
- I'm helping you.
- You know what? You're right.
I have tried everything else.
Let me get at that axe.
That's it, son.
Wow, that was amazing! Can an axe solve all my problems in life? Hey, Pops, while he works on the fire, - I got a question for you.
- Uh-huh.
What's stocked in this cabin, huh? We got steak? Wild-caught salmon? Did your boy field-dress a deer from last spring? No, no, there's nothing in there.
The only things that we eat are what we can hunt and fish and forage.
- What? - That's part of the fun.
Fun?! See, that's what your problem is, Dre.
You focus on the wrong things.
Like back home, you're worried about the "work-life balance" or missed e-mails.
Out here, boy, one wrong move and you wake up dead.
So we have no dinner plans.
No, we don't.
Now, maybe I was being a little hard on them, but my son and grandson needed a swift kick in the ass to realize life wasn't as hard as they made it out to be.
You know, Junior is doing a lot better than I thought.
I'll admit, I'm feeling a lot better, too.
See? I told you.
It's the cool mountain air.
I'm feeling it, Pops.
Hey, does the beer get colder up here? Because this is the best beer that I've ever had.
Is this an IPA? Because I think I'm an IPA guy now.
See? All you needed was to get away from everything.
Don't get caught up in the news or what folks around you are doing.
- Hmm.
- See, as a man, the way to fix things has always been the same.
You're right.
You know, I can't wait to get a couple of swings of that old axe.
Oh, it'll be good for you.
Go ahead.
Check on it.
Oh, God.
I think he's crying.
Is it out of effort? I doubt it.
Dammit, this boy is out here crying on our man trip.
Oh, Pops, I wonder what's going on out there.
Maybe he's got some wood chips in his eyes.
I don't think so.
Your boy is soft.
Look, I'm not saying that you're failing as a father, but I'm not not saying it either.
- Hey.
- Look, you need to handle this because this trip starts when the waterworks stop.
You know, I thought about it, and you were right, Mom.
Thank you.
About what now? About colleges.
- I finished my list - Ah.
and, uh, I don't want to get ahead of myself, but I think I'd be happy with any of these.
This is great.
And what and what what are your top picks, babe? - Um - University of Michigan? - Mm-hmm.
- Where did that come from? Uh, they're the Wolverines, Diane.
I think they've figured out the hand claws in the comic books, so it's at least worth a try.
Yeah, yeah.
Well, okay.
That is a really good start.
It is? Jack, yes, and, uh, just keep working on it.
- Okay, I will.
- Okay, yeah.
All right.
All right.
What is this? Diane, look, we've been a combo meal for all our lives, right? Maybe it's time we go à la carte? Wow.
The one time anything Mom said sinks in, this is it? This? Okay.
Look, what we have has been going pretty well.
- Mm-hmm.
- Why mess with that? Because I can handle it.
And I decided to become a snake guy to make myself stand out on my college application.
Hey, Junior.
Come on, man.
You can't cry on a man trip.
- I'm not crying.
- Yeah.
Hey, man, you lost your girlfriend.
Don't lose your dignity, okay? Okay.
I thought I was gonna come out here into the middle of nowhere and chop wood and it was gonna fix everything, but it didn't.
All right? I still feel horrible.
So what? You're a Black man.
Suck it up and play through.
All right, we don't get to cry in public.
That's not what we get to do.
You have to have thicker skin.
I know, I-I know.
Do you, son? Because this seems like a lesson that I've been trying to teach you your entire life.
What? I'm so hard on you, son, because the world is hard, and I feel like if you can handle me, then you can handle it.
It's my job to make sure you are armored with what you need.
But do I always have to keep my walls up? What if I'm sad? We don't get to be sad, son.
What if I'm scared? We don't get to be scared either, and we can't believe in trust because we never get the benefit of the doubt.
Look, I've heard my entire life how there are a million reasons I can't show vulnerability to the world.
But the world isn't out here chopping wood.
Right? Right now it's just you and me.
So why can't I be vulnerable out here? I don't know.
All right.
I want to try something.
Come on.
I've read that the most vulnerable thing you can do is look into somebody's eyes without breaking eye contact.
Dad do you see me? Yes, I see you, son.
Do you see me? I'm sorry, son.
I'm sorry.
Oh, damn.
Now, that ain't on the list of none of the things we're allowed to cry about.
I brought my son and grandson out to the woods to connect them back to what makes them men.
But I was failing.
You know, when I was with Olivia, I just felt like I was killing it.
We moved in together.
We talked about marriage, kids.
I felt like a real grown-up.
Ah, you were doing all right.
Yeah, kind of.
When she left, I really realized I had stalled.
I'd already moved back in three times.
Hey, son.
I stalled, too.
Thinking that the most important thing was getting the same opportunities as my White counterparts.
But it didn't make me feel any better.
And, you know, I don't know what the future holds, and that terrifies me, and I've never told that to anybody.
I'm really glad you told me.
Yeah, you told him, you told me, you told every damn woodland creature in the Sierra Nevada.
And if you two don't be quiet, we're going to bed without any dinner tonight.
Pops, we found something way better than food.
We found each other.
Now I know who's been watching all those White girl movies on Netflix.
Pops, let's try something.
All right, they say the most vulnerable and intimate thing you can do is look into someone's eyes without looking away.
Son, waiting and exhaling is for the two of you, not for me.
Hey, Pops.
That's what I thought.
I thought the same thing before it brought us together.
- Mm.
- All right? And now, I've never felt so free.
So, come on, Pops, let's do it.
Come on, man, look at me.
Do you see me, Pops? Oh, hell, no, I do not like this.
- Nope.
- Hey.
You do know how to get back to the cabin from here, right? Yeah, son, uh, just, uh check that tree for some moss.
You finish your "Red Table Talk"? We just came out to sit around the fire for a little bit.
You know, warm up.
We'll keep quiet.
Oh, no, no.
It's all right.
You know, I I only saw my dad cry one time.
It was at his brother's funeral.
At the end of the service, he broke down sobbing.
He was the strongest man I'd ever known.
Seeing him like that, boy It really shook me.
Pops, I had no idea.
When I looked into your eyes back there, that shook me, too.
And I didn't like it.
I didn't make that much eye contact with your mother at the wedding.
But I looked into your eyes, son, and I could see Pops.
It's okay.
I could see how much you've forgiven me for all the mistakes I've made.
I - Pops, hey, man.
- No, no, let me finish now.
That you could open your home to me, share that with me when I wasn't there for you the way I should have been Man, I don't deserve it.
We were happy that you were there.
I appreciate you saying that, son, I do.
But it doesn't take away the shame that I feel, though.
Wow, Pops, um I don't know if you've ever been that vulnerable with any of us.
That's huge.
Thank you, Pops.
You saying that has given me something I didn't even know I needed.
I wish we came to the woods a lot sooner.
It's definitely cheaper than therapy.
Well, I was gonna sneak off, but, um, usually when I come out here and I don't catch anything to eat, there's this diner I go to.
- Yeah.
- What? - Y'all coming? - Oh.
Hell yeah, I'm starving.
Why'd you tell Jack he'd be fine without me? Because he will be.
You have no evidence to support that theory.
Oh, come sit down.
Did I ever tell you about when you and Jack learned how to walk? - Yeah.
- Mm-hmm.
A million times.
I walked first, so Jack would sit in the middle of the floor and make me bring him stuff from all over the house.
Well, part of that's true.
But actually, Jack was the first one who learned how to walk, and he just thought it was funny when you brought him stuff.
So he tricked me? No.
He didn't trick you.
He just liked it better when you guys did stuff together.
That's why I'm not worried.
I'll be lucky if Junior and Zoey come home for the same holidays, but with you and Jack, you're never gonna miss a chance to see each other.
I know you're scared because you two haven't been apart for longer than a day or two in your whole life.
But I promise you that if you guys go to different schools, nothing is gonna break the connection that you have.
Thanks, Mom.
You're welcome.
You know he thinks Morehouse is gonna teach him how to build big houses.
Uh, we still have to look out for him.
- Mm-hmm.
- Mm-hmm.
Hey, Pops, what made you start coming out here anyway? Well, growing up in Detroit, didn't get a lot of opportunities - to kind of be on my own.
- Mm.
Eight people live in my house.
- I know the feeling.
- Mm-hmm.
And when I found this place, it became my spot to come and do that.
It is nice.
Makes everything slow down.
- Mm-hmm.
- All right, guys, let's get going.
All right.
Hey, hey.
Come here.
Come on.
- Mm-hmm.
- Come here.
All right.
Mm, mm, mm.
Let's not wait another 50 years to have these conversations, huh? How about next year? I'm in.
I love you, son.
I love you, too, Pops.
I love you, son.
I love you, too, Dad.
And I love you, too, Junior.
But, uh, y'all better not tell Ruby about this place.
Yeah, I wouldn't.
You'd better not tell your mama.
I won't.
And for God's sakes, please, nobody tell Diane.
- Oh! - She'll ruin it for everybody.
Hell no! The success of a Black man can be measured in many ways, but the most important one is the love you feel from your family.
I'd had to put up walls my entire life Man trip! But I am not going to do that anymore.
Oh, uh, hey.
I wanted to apologize.
Jinx! You owe me a soda! It's weird thinking about not seeing you every day.
That's why I'm trying not to.
Why did you put that in my head? It's gonna be okay.
I mean, it's not like we're leaving tomorrow.
Yeah, not even close.
Besides, every time I try to think two weeks ahead, my brain starts to hurt, so I know.
- Yeah.
- But you know what I like to think about? All the chances we have to hang out before then.
You care if I read in here? Uh, make yourself at home.
This is what they're coming to see.

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