Modern Family s03e20 Episode Script

The Last Walt

We have to tell him.
I hope he's okay.
Walt, our elderly next door neighbor, died.
He and Luke were pretty close, so we have to tell him.
I'm a little nervous about it.
I think we should break it to him slowly.
Like how? Well, first we'd say, "Luke, your friend Walt has a cold.
You shouldn't go over there.
" Next day-- "bad news.
Walt's in the hospital, but he's still cracking jokes with the nurses.
" Next day-- "they're trying an experimental drug.
Fingers crossed.
" Next day-- "his body rebelled.
He's in a coma.
" Next day-- he rallies, next day--coma, next day-- coma, next day-- coma, next day-- eye flutter-- Stop.
Just stop.
Oh, Luke, we have some bad news for you.
It's about Walt.
I'm afraid He passed away.
Um, it happened yesterday.
He finished writing an angry letter to the postmaster general, and he just fell asleep.
It was very peaceful.
Not the letter.
That was full of threats, but It's okay to be sad, honey.
You two were really good friends.
It must be quite a shock to hear that Walt's dead.
Um, so do you wanna talk about it or I'm okay.
Can I get back to my video game? It's paused.
Oh, um, sure.
Yeah, buddy.
Come here.
How weird was that? I know.
Crazy weird.
It's like he had no feelings at all.
What are you talking about? That grin.
"Walt's dead.
" You looked like the joker.
I didn't smile.
You did.
It's like a weird coping mechanism.
You did the same thing when you told him his hamster died.
I don't know what you thought you saw, Phil, but our child just got some terrible news and had absolutely no reaction.
Doesn't that concern you? Yeah.
He probably just needs time to process it.
Do you think? Yeah, honey.
Death is a profound thing to deal with at any age.
We all manage it differently.
Some people lock up their feelings.
Others reach out for comfort, finding some way to reaffirm their connection to life-- - You're joking.
- Oh.
Hola, Haley.
Gloria, I was driving by and saw this outside your door, so here.
- Thank you.
- No problem.
Hey, so since I'm already here, my friend was gonna have a pool party tonight, but he got sick.
Could we have it here? Mm.
Good thing that you saw this paper or if not, you would have never been able to ask.
I'm sorry, but Jay and I are going to Mitch and Cam's for dinner tonight.
I'm just thinking out loud here.
What if I get a chaperone that my parents approve of? Would it be okay then? Well, I guess so.
You know, it would be good for Manny to have a little bit of fun.
Do you mind if he stays here for the party? Mind? The plan depended on him.
I don't suppose you've thought of a chaperone? Of course not, mom, because it's going to be a wild party and I'm trying to get away with something, as usual.
Yes, I thought of a chaperone-- my Uncle who already said he would do it.
But if that's gonna be a problem, - I think I should just call everybody-- - Sorry.
It's fine.
And thank you, Uncle Manny.
Can you help a little bit? This--if I--if I push down, does that Yeah, that's helping.
That's helping.
No, it's not helping.
It's 'cause it's stuck.
I can't believe I got 'em this stuck.
I've built beds my whole life-- bunk beds, dog beds, cow beds.
Okay, I'm calling you on cow beds.
Oh, that's my dad! Okay.
He can help.
He's built a boat, a dock, a lake Uh, he did not build a lake.
Okay, from now on, just stop after you say the second thing.
So the cabin door swings open.
Damned if there wasn't a lady pilot in there.
Yeah, well, I hate to admit it, but it throws me, too.
I do prefer a man.
Are we gonna have this conversation again? - Hey, Merle.
- Hey.
How are you? - Yeah, ooh.
- Okay.
Nice to see you.
All right, let me grab that for you.
I got it.
I will take that beer you were about to offer me, though.
Oh, yeah.
Coming right up.
And you know where everything is.
Go have a seat.
Oh, I missed a call from my dad.
Oh, let me guess.
Is he calling to cancel? What's his excuse this time? You know, that's a really mean thing to assume, Cam.
I really wish you'd give my dad a break for once.
Oh, please.
You know Jay doesn't like my dad.
He thinks he's some bumpkin from the sticks.
Well, I will have you know that Merle Stonewall Tucker is one of the most respected farmers in all of Hell's Hollow, Missouri.
Okay, you're not hearing yourself.
My dad likes him just fine.
Come on.
- Hello? - Hey, dad.
It's me.
I'm sick.
I gotta cancel tonight.
Yeah, 6:00.
We're really looking forward to it.
What are you doing? I just said I can't come.
I don't know.
Let me ask.
My dad wants to know red or white? Um, uh, red.
And I'm sorry.
Yeah, Cam says red.
Yeah, he's-- he's so happy-- Knock it off, old man.
You are not sick.
Why do you always do this? Okay, look, between you and me, Mervis kind of bugs me.
Okay, first of all, it's Merle.
Mervis isn't a name.
Mervis is a sound.
And second of all, he's-- he's my partner's father.
Okay? You're coming.
Okay, dad, why don't you settle in? We don't have plans until dinner tonight with Jay and Gloria.
I-I don't like that guy.
What? That's-- you like everybody.
Not Jay.
The guy rubs me the wrong way.
Every time I try to do something nice, he makes this cranky face, like Okay.
Well, you know what? I'm gonna chalk this up to jet lag for you because it's not like you at all.
Okay, you have to make an effort.
It's my partner's father.
Now give me the growl that means "okay.
" Good.
Did you know Walt had a daughter he was completely estranged from? His lawyer said she wouldn't even honor his last request to toss his dog tags in the ocean.
Can you imagine? Phil, do we really have to go through this again? I told you, I would do everything possible to make sure that your skeleton ends up in a science class at a women's college.
No, it's just sad.
That's half of what would keep me going in my old age-- remembering all the good times with the kids.
Teaching Luke to ride his bike, Haley at the father-daughter dance Taking Alex for her first pony ride.
You never took Alex on a pony ride.
- Oh, right.
That was just me.
- Mm-hmm.
But Alex and I went, um, Oh, no.
That was Haley.
Phil, look.
It's Luke.
He's going into Walt's house.
Oh, he's saying good-bye.
He just needed a little time.
It's so sweet and so sad.
He's so much more sensitive than I ever thought.
They had a special bond.
I wouldn't be surprised if one day he wrote a book like "Tuesdays with Morrie.
" I never read it.
Did that guy steal Morrie's TV? Now setting a course for adventure! Beep.
I've had great experiences with all my kids, but I I might have fallen behind a bit with Alex.
My fault completely.
Adventure? We are throwing dog tags into an already polluted ocean where they will probably choke an otter.
Honey, we're bringing closure to a man's life.
We'll hike up to the scenic overlook, where apparently, Walt proposed to his wife, wait for the light to be just right, say a few words.
Share some memories.
That's kind of poetic.
Kind of navajo.
Now you're getting it.
We'll be sending him off with a level of dignity, that if we're lucky, someday we'll experience, too.
It's called-- Hey.
What do you got there? Walt's old TV? He said I could take one thing after he died.
I wish he would've said two things.
I would've taken that phone with the big buttons.
I bet you guys had some really good times watching this thing, right? No.
I just wanted a TV in my room.
You know, Luke, there might be a nicer way to honor Walt's memory.
What do you mean? Well, I mean, you guys liked to garden.
We could, uh, we could take one of his flowers and plant it in our yard, and then every spring, when-- There we go.
Sweetie, how are you feeling? You sad? Angry? Confused? Frustrated? You know you can talk to me.
I know, but I can't see through you.
Could you scootch? No.
You know, this is not okay.
It's going back.
What? He said I could pick one thing.
This isn't picking.
It's looting, and it's going back.
You are so mean.
When Walt used to look through those binoculars and say, "your dad's one lucky man," he was wrong.
Hi, Haley.
Stef, Sam, this is Manny.
What's up, dude? Kitchen's over there and pool's in the back.
So where are your parents? They're not coming.
I was told there'd be a chaperone.
There is.
It's you.
My parents are totally fine with it.
Well, exits, fire extinguisher, burn kit.
Okay, let's have some fun.
I believe I was clear the bedrooms were off-limits.
Young lady, I don't think you're ready up here for what you're planning to do up there.
Not on my watch.
Oh, this was a delicious meal, Mitchell.
I wish my wife could cook a roast like this.
You got a good one there, son.
Oh, well, I'm very lucky, just like you and mama.
Never had a bad patch.
Except the winter of '85.
Remember that? Oh, I spent several nights in the cow bed then.
Oh, here.
Let me help you.
No, no, no.
You sit-- sit down.
- Let-- lets us guys catch up here a little bit.
- Yeah.
I'll tell you why I don't like that guy-- and I could never say this to Mitch-- he treats my son like the wife in the relationship.
Always has.
Before we get to dessert, I've got some presents here.
- Oh! - Oh, you didn't need to, dad.
Love it! - Oh, Merle, thank you so much.
- Oh! Look at this.
So elegant, huh? Oh, this is so sweet.
I think I might cry.
Dad, I really gotta get home.
I know.
I know.
You gotta do homework.
But you can't expect me to see a sign that says, "world's greatest milk shake-- 50 miles," and not drive to it.
Sorry, sweetie.
Machine's broken.
I just wanted a special day with my daughter, you know, like "the time we gave an old man a dramatic sendoff at the beach," or--or "the time we drove 100 miles for the world's greatest milk shake.
" Call us when it happens, Francine.
Oh, it could be before you get home.
I'm a week past my due date as it is.
What can I do for you? "The time we delivered a baby.
" We were the only ones there, and she was so close, the sound of a pin dropping could induce labor.
Okay! What looks good? What looks good? What looks good? Well, um-- Bam! Wh-whoa! Kids love to destroy things.
Not Manny.
He's always been a little bit too serious.
I would make the buildings, and he would inspect them.
And if they weren't up to code, ay, ay, ay, the paperwork.
I remember Cam, one time, rolled a tractor tire right through a chicken coop.
He was 3 at the time.
I remember Mitchell, one time, karate-chopped a plate glass window.
Got 17 stitches.
Ah, yes.
I love that story.
Which one of the Charlie's Angels he was being again? - That's not important.
- I think it was Farrah.
Yeah, the thing I remember is, when Mitchell told that story, how-- how he giggled all the way through.
I'm sure he wasn't giggling.
Oh, yeah, he-- he was giggling, all right.
No, see, Mitchell has a booming laugh.
It's Cameron, actually-- has the high laugh.
You know No, I think Mitch has a higher laugh than-- it's No, it's Listen to them.
Listen to them.
Best of friends.
Oh, man.
I'm sorry I doubted Jay.
He's been lovely.
Oh, well, confession time-- he kinda didn't want to come.
Well, you're gonna laugh because my dad was kinda hoping he wouldn't.
Wha? Oh.
They just needed to get to know one another better.
I am so glad that we did this.
Yeah, me, too.
Oh, that's so funny.
Wh-what did your dad not like about my dad? Oh, well, you know Jay.
He's a Teddy bear, but sometimes he can kinda come off as a tough guy.
Yeah, that's true.
As an actual tough guy, you can kinda see how that would rub my dad the wrong way.
Oh, it's--I-I could see that, but, you know, my dad's actually pretty tough himself, so Oh, yeah, city tough, you know, not farm tough.
You mean cities, where there are gangs, as to opposed to farms, where there are ducks? Oh, boy.
It's really jammed in there.
Why don't you hop on in there, dad? My dad's got it.
All right, let's see here.
Hang on, Merle.
- Wait.
Huh? Hold.
- Yeah, that's good.
It's coming.
We got it.
We got it.
- Oh, there you go.
- There you go.
Cam, why don't you go get us a couple of cold ones? We'll finish this job up in here.
Sure thing, dad.
You earned it.
Good helping there, Merle.
It's hot in here.
It's, like, 80 degrees.
He did that so the Meals on Wheels lady had to take off her sweater.
How do we turn on the lights in here? Of course.
So, Luke, now that we're here, you wanna take a minute and say what Walt meant to you? Nope.
Luke, you are going through something huge in your life, and I'm concerned that you're not processing it in a normal, healthy way.
I'm sad.
I'm so very sad.
No, I don't just wanna hear what you think I wanna hear.
- I want you to really tell me-- - Hi.
It's Kim with Meals on Wheels.
Hi, Luke.
Where's Walt? It is like a sauna in here.
How does he stand it? Walt! I'm waiting for my hug! I have some sad news about Walt.
He's dead.
What? He died last night.
Are you joking? No.
He had a heart attack.
A man died.
You're-- you're smiling.
I'm not smiling.
You are, mom.
It's kinda creepy.
Well, hello? Walt? What's going on? Something happen to Walt? Well, I'm sure you can imagine.
He sick? He's in the hospital? Oh, my God.
Just tell me.
Mm! Okay.
He is dead.
- He is? - Yeah, he's dead.
What are you doing with your mouth? Nothing.
She's smiling.
She thinks it's funny.
I don't.
I don't think it's funny.
- I'm not smiling.
- I'm not leaving this with you.
I'm sorry.
I'm so sorry.
I just found out my face does this.
Wow, mom.
That was so wrong.
Well, it's--it's called a coping mechanism, Luke.
Some people repress their feelings and some people just smile.
But d--it doesn't matter.
Just put the TV in the den.
Let's get out of here.
It doesn't go in the den.
It goes right here.
I can see it from my room.
Sometimes I'd wake up in the middle of the night and look down here.
If the TV was on, I knew he was up, and I don't know, I guess I'm gonna miss that.
That's Yeah.
Is that any better? Yeah, it still feels just, you know, a little wobbly.
Oh! Oh, my God.
Okay, no, no, no.
That's--that's fine.
Thank you.
Thank you.
Okay, it's "go" time.
Oh, hey, doc.
It's okay.
It's just a cramp.
Can I get you guys anything else? Please, no.
He's already made me eat the world's greatest everything on the menu.
Dad, why are you acting like this? Is this about Walt dying? No.
It's about what he didn't do when he was alive-- have a special bond with his daughter.
I don't want to be that kind of dad.
I want to be Eugene Cernan.
Who's Eugene Cernan? "Apollo 17" astronaut, last man on the moon, coolest dad of all time.
When he was leaving the moon, he reached down and wrote his daughter's initials into the lunar surface.
Since there's no atmosphere-- There'll be there forever.
So every time she looks in the sky, she knows there's a message just for her.
That's why dads everywhere hate Eugene Cernan.
Oh, no.
Okay, "hate's" a strong word.
It's just-- I'm trying to make-- Oh.
Oh, boy.
I really wanna help, but you know when someone yawns, it makes you yawn? You're not gonna yawn, are you? I already yawned a little in my mouth.
Oh, God.
Jay, I want to thank you for helping me do this.
I know Cam appreciates not having to do it all on his own.
What? What's that face? You really wanna know? Sure.
Sometimes I think you treat my son like the woman in their relationship.
- What? - Like those watches.
Cam's was all big and manly.
The other one looked like something Grace Kelly would wear.
Well, that's just because Mitch has a more slender wrist than Cam does.
That's all.
It's skinny, not slender.
And you're honestly telling me you don't cast Mitch in the more ladylike role? Are you saying Cam is the wife in this deal? I don't think about it that way.
It's not like it was in our day.
Husband went out to work.
Wife stayed home with the kids.
That sounds like a clever way of saying "yes.
" Fine.
They're both equal.
Neither one is the wife.
I know that in my head.
It's just that it makes me feel a tiny bit better to think that the person he's spending his life with is a tiny bit of a woman.
I get it.
Every time I start to feel comfortable with this thing, some new part comes up I gotta wrap my head around.
Yeah, I guess we got no choice.
We got two sons, and they're gay for each other.
I'll take it slow on the way home.
Don't worry.
Canceling course for adventure.
You know what I'll never forget? The time my dad spent the entire day trying to create a special memory for me.
Or when a pregnant lady slipped in my vomit.
Hang on.
I wanna do one thing before we go.
Hey, you on your way home? Just about.
How's everything there? Actually, it's pretty great.
I can't wait to see you.
Me, too.
Let's hit it.
I don't know.
I feel like maybe we should get some food on the way home.
Maybe a nice tuna melt.
Stop it.
I did what I could, mom.
It was a nightmare.
I can't tell you how many times I turned off the bathroom light.
Haley! Oh, crap.
Listen, Gloria.
Okay, everything I told you technically was not-- You lied to me so that you could have a party without supervision! Oh, I had plenty of supervision.
He was running around all night with his coasters and vacuum and his "make good choices" speech.
Somebody needed to be responsible.
Thank you.
Not you.
You take rules too seriously.
I'm in trouble? You are 13.
You're not supposed to be vacuuming the party.
You're supposed to be enjoying the party.
A party that you shouldn't have been having! It seems like you're sending mixed signals here.
Yeah, maybe I should get my friends and just leave.
No, you're in trouble, little young lady.
You're having this party! What? They've been using glassware by the pool, putting feet on the furniture, and begging girls to kiss each other.
Yes! All the things that you should have been doing! Yeah, all those things are fine.
Have fun and go crazy.
But he's gonna ruin my party.
Two birds with one bullet.