Rutherford Falls (2021) s01e02 Episode Script

Buckheart Lodge

[light jazzy piano music]

A chew stick.
Yes, Lawrence Rutherford's chew stick.
Your ancestors taught
him how to make one.
It's very simple. You just
Bristle the edges by
pounding it with a stone,
then chew on it with some mint.
Exactly, and then my family
brought that technology
to the masses selling toothbrushes
to soldiers and fur traders.
Guess you could say we got the short end
of the stick on that one.
That's a good one.
I'm gonna use that.
Can I use that?
- No.
- Then I won't.
Listen, I came by to
talk about what happened
on Founder's Day.
Yeah, uh,
ooh, definitely ruffled
a few feathers there.
Well, seems to me
this town has forgotten
how to honor their ancestors.
Honor the past. Respect history.
That's all I'm trying to say.
If you ask me, Big Larry,
the town's most famous symbol,
should stay right where he is.
I just wanted to say good luck
and keep up the fight.
Thank you. Yes, thank you.
Okay, Terry, you have my word.
Did you see that?
Ahh, this is huge.
This is so huge.
Terry has a ton of influence.
We gotta build on this momentum.
We got to do something bold.
What about a Venetian ball?
I may not understand what you mean.
Terry's right. This
isn't about a statue.
This is about reminding
people of their history.
We have to contact Professor
Tobias James Kaufman.
My mentor from college,
history professor.
He's writing a book
about the Rutherfords.
If we can get him to publish
an excerpt in the "Daily Star,"
it will remind people who we
are and why this is important.
- Found him.
- Set a meeting.
Oh, but first, tell me
about this Venetian ball.
Okay, we all remember Madonna's
iconic 1990 VMA performance.
I do not. Go on.
[upbeat music]

Oh, whoa, whoa, whoa.
What do we have here?
We got Coppola wine, Clooney tequila,
Charles Barkley gin.
Oh, yeah, nothing but
top shelf for Kaufman.
Plus, I can't make the rookie mistake
of showing up empty-handed
asking for a favor.
Yeah, Reagan, we can't all be like you
constantly taking up Nathan's time,
responsible to no one and for nothing.
Why aren't you in school?
Why don't you have a man in your life?
- I love you.
- Love you too.
Okay, do you really need
to bring all this booze
to a full-blown alcoholic?
Kaufman's a raconteur.
He's a gadabout.
Yeah, he likes to wet his whistle,
- but he is a respected scholar.
- Mm.
We're lucky we even got this meeting.
He just got back from his
sabbatical in California.
That was rehab.
You gotta read the full GoFundMe
before you donate.
It's gonna be fine.
How are you?
What's going on with
your cultural center?
Well, I've just been, like,
sitting down and really brainstorming
some possible next steps.
- Okay.
- So far I'm leaning toward
quitting and working at a bank.
No, you can't quit.
We both have to keep
up the fight, all right?
- All right, I'll see you soon.
- See ya.
By the way, if you want, I
can try and bend Terry's ear.
He stopped by the museum this morning.
I feel like we really get each other.
Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait.
Terry came here?
What exactly did he say to you?
[percussive music]
Hey, what are you doing
with Nathan Rutherford?
Why are you ginning him up?
You know you can't talk
to me that way, right?
- I'm your boss.
- I told you. She's stuck up.
You didn't answer my question.
See? She didn't even acknowledge me.
Nathan has a lot of pull in this town.
Doesn't hurt to be on his good side.
His intentions seem genuine,
and he looked like he needed support.
Oh, okay.
I just I thought you
were taking advantage,
because, you know, you're like a shark
gliding through water,
and then there's Nathan
this little baleen whale
with his belly exposed.
How could you not chomp?
Most people are too scared to
tell me their real opinions.
Your rudeness is oddly refreshing.
Not to me it isn't.
Shane, I swear to God
Reagan, we're putting
Operation Running Lightning
on a fast track,
and I want you on the team.
Oh, cool. Well, the thing is,
I'm guessing this top secret
project benefits the casino,
and I have zero interest
in working for the casino.
I mean, I know I work
in the casino currently,
but I work for the cultural center.
Casinos are cesspools
of blind capitalism.
Counterpoint: casinos sometimes
make regular people really happy.
Whoo! Yeah, baby! Yeah, baby! Yeah! Ooh!
everyone on that bench.
You're a piece of shit.
I knew I should have
married your brother
- instead of your broke ass.
- Well, I said sometimes.
I hate you.
In an ever-changing world,
one company stands tall
to meet any challenge.
Security, balance, trust:
The power is inside all of us.
And? What am I missing?
There's a thing now
where kids are eating
Rutherford batteries on TikTok.
"The power is inside all of us."
Oh, Jesus. Okay.
Pull up the press release from 2012,
the chemical spill near
the old folks' home.
- We'll use that as a template.
- Okay, copy.
Ooh, and when we get back to the office,
you still have to
call Nathan Rutherford.
Ugh, I am the head of
PR, not a babysitter.
- I know.
- He mm.
I know.
[phone chiming]
Nathan Rutherford's office.
This is Bobbie Yang.
Hi. It's Kaitlyn Farrow
from Rutherford Inc.
May I speak to Nathan, please?
One second.
Kaitlyn, hey, how are you?
How's your mom Lynda
and your dad Richard
and your twin sisters Stacey and Marcy?
Uh, they're fine.
Listen, Nathan, I'm calling to check in.
I saw your Founder's
Day speech on YouTube.
[laughs] That that
probably needs a little
bit of extra context with
Yeah, it only had, like, 300 views,
but we scrubbed it just to be safe.
But, Nathan, listen,
Big Larry is literally our company logo,
so obviously we'd like to avoid
any further dustups like this.
Could not agree more, Kaitlyn.
As a sitting board member
Honorary, non-voting.
Sure, but listed in the minutes,
so very official.
No one cares more about
my family's reputation
than I do, so rest assured
there will be no more problems.
That's great.
- Let's just keep a lid on it.
- You got it.
Whatever I do will be
in service of the lid,
securing it, tightening it,
- monitoring it
- No, no.
That implies you'll do something,
and I need you to do nothing.
I will do nothing
except ensure that the lid stays on.
Just don't touch the lid, Nathan.
Lid no touchy.
And she's hung up.
Wow. How cool is she?
- She is so cool.
- Yeah, right.
I mean, she's not warm.
But she's effective.
Oh, should I tell Kaufman
that we're no longer visiting?
Oh, no, we're definitely still going.
She seemed pretty intense
about the lid stuff.
Yeah, of course, and rightly so.
She's concerned about the brand,
but I'm telling you,
the best way to protect
the Rutherford brand is to put
this whole Big Larry debate to rest.
Kaufman is key to that.
Gotta go with my gut on this.
I've never distrusted your gut.
And I'm not gonna start today.
My Aunt Teresa has some pottery show
at the Denver Art Museum.
Guess who she asked to house sit?
Hell yeah.
Man, we're about to
party Parasite-style.
What's up, everybody?
Uh, hi.
Sorry to eavesdrop.
Is your aunt Teresa Maple?
She's like the Michael
Jordan of Minishonka pottery.
Oh, you know that, because she
well, she's your aunt.
I was wondering if you
might be able to connect us.
[whispering] If we don't move,
she won't know we're here.
Don't make a sound.
She's like a T. rex.
She'll track your motions
with them beady little eyes.
Okay. Thank you.
That was hard to watch.
Right, now you see
what I'm dealing with.
Nobody wants to help
the cultural center.
That's not completely accurate.
They don't want to help you.
Oh, because I'm a
successful "City Indian."
Left the rez to attend a fancy college,
and now everybody's jealous.
You're not successful,
and Wayne's sister goes to Yale.
Whatever, man.
I asked around about you.
Would you like to know
why you're having trouble
with the community?
Oh, I know why.
It's because Reagan lives
in town and not on the rez.
She's not a fluent speaker.
She walks her dog on a leash.
It's because they're
still mad about Ray.
[chuckles] Ray. Oh, no.
We broke up, like, nine years ago.
You dumped him the night
before your wedding.
Food was made.
Baskets were woven.
Ray's mom lost her deposit.
This happens.
People go and then
have to find a way back
into the community.
And some people just don't like you.
I'm about to visit some council members
to get them on board with my plans.
You should come.
Show your face.
It'll help.
[light upbeat music]
Okay, but when you say
some people don't like me,
what you really mean is
Every single person on the rez.

The magnum opus. [gasps]
And I finally settled on a title.
The Rutherfords: How
America's Founding Family
Found the Strength
to Find the Country.
Professor, it's glorious.
[laughing] Oh, please.
Give comfort to yourself.
Oh, Tobias,
I wish I were here on
happier circumstances,
but I find myself in quite a pickle.
Mayor Chisenhall has mounted
an effort to move Big Larry.
But moving Big Lawrence would
be an historical erasure.
The Rutherford family
is Rutherford Falls.
Yes, and the town just
needs to be reminded of this.
If only there was something
that could do that.
Lo and behold, this book.
When will it be published?
It's hard to say.
For the fourth time,
my publisher has gone
out of business due to fraud.
Can you believe the luck?
Well, that's a damn shame,
but I have some good news,
which is that "The
Rutherford Daily Star"
has agreed to publish an excerpt
on their front page.
Nathaniel, shut up.
I shall do you one better.
We shall harness the
power of the microphone.
Go on.
I have what I am reliably assured
is a fairly influential podcast.
The Salon
colon A Bacchanal Of Ideas.
Of course. I listen every week.
Well, Nathaniel, you
simply must be the guest
on today's episode.
We shall remind the town
of your family's importance.
Yes, that's perfect.
Gin and tonic, gentlemen?
Whoa. [laughs]
- Thanks, Bobbie.
- Mmm.
And now to the podcast studio!
- Here?
- Yes, it's here.
We just bring in a table and some mics.
Well, my mom confirmed it.
People are still mad
about the Ray thing.
You know we hold a grudge.
We still bring up Columbus.
Hold up. Now I'm as bad as Columbus?
Well, crime divided by time.
Terrance, good to see you.
Felicia, it's been a minute.

Reagan, go chop some wood.
Oh, well, I thought I as gonna
Go chop some wood for Felicia.
You are.
Gloves are in the shed.

Welcome back to The Salon:
A Bacchanal of Ideas.
My guest this time,
Nathaniel Rutherford,
who find his very heritage
currently under attack.
- Is that correct?
- Yes, yes.
That's exactly right.
The statue, Big Larry,
in Rutherford Falls,
it's been in the same spot
and a very significant spot
for centuries.
And now people want to
tear him out of the ground
and toss him aside.
For shame.
You know, it makes me yearn for the past
when weighty decisions were made
not on the whim of the unwashed masses
but by a trusted elite.
Well, I'm not sure I'd
put it that way, but
This is exactly the type of issue
that would have been hashed
out over venison and port wine
at Buckheart Lodge.
Centuries ago, when a difficult issue
befell Rutherford Falls,
the heads of the prominent families,
led by Lawrence Sr.,
would gather at a small
cabin on the edge of town
called Buckheart Lodge.
It was a great tradition.
Of course, now these decision
are made by a town council,
which is meeting in three
Nestled deep in the wood,
it was a crucible of passionate debate,
like the agora of ancient Greece,
and the Rutherfords
always had the final word.
Yeah, so back to the
statue for one second.
Lawrence Sr. did so much,
and he always had the town in mind.
I think we owe it to him
to keep the statue where it is.
[heavy sigh]
Buckheart Lodge.
[funky percussive music]
Oh, yes, gas fireplace.
I have so many splinters.
Sorry to keep you waiting.
I'd scheduled my bathroom
to get caulked today,
but the guy's lazy and has no ambition.
Sorry I'm not the frickin'
Property Brothers, Dad.
And you never will be.
Thank you for taking the time.
I'm here to discuss my proposal.
Yeah, I read it.
You know, Reagan here is
an excellent handywoman.
She'll caulk your bathroom.
I've never caulked anything in my life.
That's why Creator gave us YouTube.
Look it up, Northwestern.
Nathaniel, if I may be
disconcertingly frank,
I agree with you 100%.
Not only should that statue
remain exactly where it is,
they should put other
statues up as well.
I want to see a
Rutherford on every corner.
Well, there's a lot worth commemorating,
John Rutherford, advisor
to Thomas Jefferson,
Bea Rutherford, New York
state's first female cop.
She was also a bare-knuckle fighter.
- Never married.
- Sterling Rutherford,
the first pilot to land
a plane on the Hudson.
Sorry, Sully.
You're a loser.
[laughs] Oh. What?
Well, s'mores.
That's a happy, fun thing, right?
The very first s'mores made
and consumed by Rutherfords.
Let's not forget the
first white baby born
in Cobbs County.
- What?
- Is it not accurate to say
that your family introduced
whiteness to the region?
Is it not accurate?
- Uh
- I know that it is.
I'm asking you as a courtesy.
It it it it might
be an accurate thing to say.
It's not but it's
not a point of pride.
Oh, well, uh wait, get down.
What? What? Hide your ideas.
Because the PC police
are apparently here.
Well, I'm guilty of independent thought,
so lock me up in the PC prison
and throw away the PC key.
Let me tell you something.
I'm still proud of that white baby.
I'm just saying I'm proud of my family.
I'm not saying it's because of
anything, like, race-related.
But you are related
exclusively to white people.
Well, that wraps up this edition
of The Salon: A Bacchanal of Ideas.
Sebastian, cut and print.
Oh, cracking good show, old boy.
Let's bend an elbow to celebrate.
[light piano music]

You took so long in the bathroom
I got worried Mal-Mer
had snatched you up.
I don't believe in those superstitions,
because I'm not a child.
There a problem?
I just should have known.
I gave into the excitement
of you helping me,
but when you swim with
sharks, you get chomped.
Nobody got chomped, Reagan.
You said I'd be reintroduced
back into the community,
but I haven't talked to a single person.
You know what? I'm done. Take me back.
How many hours did you put
in to earning your degrees?
How many crappy side gigs did you work
to put yourself through school?
I had, like, four jobs. So what?
So you're willing to do
all that work out there
but not here with your own people.
Do you know how much wood I've chopped,
how many cars I've washed,
Dirty Dancing classes I taught?
- Oh.
- We all do the work.
Who are you to think
you're somehow above it?
All right.
Let's do it your way.
[Ezra Furman's "Restless Year"]
So one leg up, exhale
while we push up to the sky
No one? All right?
Snapping my fingers, walking around ♪
I'm the dusty jewel
in the thrown-out crown ♪
Got a bus pass to make my way ♪
From hideout to hideout
in the heat of the day ♪
I got a talisman tote
with the whole array ♪
And when you catch my
coattails I'll be miles away ♪
Just a sleepy time.
- Bingo.
- Bingo?
Yeah, whoo!
Just gonna lay down

Bobbie, we're at Defcon 1.
Oh, great.
What? No, that's the bad one.
Ahh, that stuff about the white baby.
Why did he talk about white babies?
- Not good.
- Ugh.
- The lid is not secured.
- I agree.
Also, you missed your
4:00 p.m. Kind Bar,
and I can tell you're getting hangry,
so take this, and
we'll figure it all out.
Yeah, yeah, yeah,
yeah, yeah, yeah. Okay.
Good news!
Sebastian the intern checked the audio.
And the episode is good to go.
Great. How does the editing work?
Do we get to give notes or
Friends, this is a podcast.
That's Latin for "as is."
- No, it isn't.
- We record it,
slap some stolen music on it,
and then up to the web it goes.
Oh, great. Well, it just
what if there are parts of the interview
that are a tad dicey,
like, I don't know, the
Rutherford baby stuff?
The white one.
Why do you use that adjective?
It just might be
unnecessarily controversial.
Nathaniel, listeners
expect an active volcano
of provocative discourse
when they enter "The Salon."
They know I'm incorrigible.
I know you're incorrigible.
- Come on.
- It's known.
I'd just really appreciate
it if you took it out.
I can't. It's my favorite part.
recently we have been reminded
of a certain place that great men may go
when they find
themselves at loggerheads.
You want to settle
this at Buckheart Lodge?
It's perfect! [laughs]
All righty, then.
Oh, then we shall leave at once.
One of you must drive.
My license has been seized by the state.
Nathan, I hate to
question your judgment,
but he drank that
entire basketball of gin.
Yeah, I know, Bobbie,
but the lid is way off,
and we cannot go home
until we put it back on.
You know, back in college
we used to sneak in here
late at night, light candles,
and read old Lawrence's journals.
I swear to God, sometimes
you can feel his spirit.
You could write quite
the manifesto here.
Oh, God damn it. It's locked. Oh, well.
Pish posh, dear boy.
Those of us in the
know have a special way
of gaining access.
All it takes is a light
touch and the proper tool.
Oh, don't. Oh. Okay, all right.
Jesus, man.
Yeah, here we are.
Wow, those painting are captivating.
Yeah, right?
In days of yore when the men of
Rutherford Falls would quorum,
they would engage in athleticism
to sharpen their senses.
I cannot wait to quorum some day.
Now, let us parlay, or rather,
let us drink and then parlay.
Hmm, you just take them
right out of the display.
Relax, they're cups.
Now, brass tacks.
Why should I wish to edit any
section of The Salon?
To what end?
It's just I'm in a really tough spot
with this whole statue thing,
and I wouldn't want to offend
any non-white babies
who might be listening.
Great men must not concern
themselves with lesser minds.
My show speaks the
language of naked truths
in the tradition of Plato, Nietzsche,
and my personal podcasting hero,
Mr. Joseph Rogan.
Nathaniel, you have
nothing to be ashamed of.
Tobias, there are things at play here
that I don't think you're
understanding very well.
I need you to edit
the goddamn interview.
Okay, he's not bending.
Also, I have SAT prep in the morning.
Yeah, I I know, Bobbie.
Here. I just
I can give me a minute, okay?
[dramatic musical sting]
- What the hell?
- Enough talk.
I intend to remind you of your inherent
and God-given power.
Okay, I think we should all go home.
We've crossed the Rubicon.
Now, I'll give you what you want,
provided you best me in a
test of strength and guile!
Wow. I've gotten six new friend requests
and an invite to a baby shower.
This feels like progress.
Why are we at Ray's mom's house?
Tony Devers quit council last month
to open at jiujitsu studio.
Ray's mom was appointed to replace him.
You need to confront your past
so you can really move on.
Okay, but do I really want to
move on with clawed-out eyes?
That woman hates me.
It's bad for you if I go in there.
It's a risk I'm willing to take.
Come on, no more hiding.
But do not say anything
about the wedding.
She just stopped giving
out the Jordan Almonds
that were supposed
to be at my reception.
- Mm.
- Hi, Rayanne.
Been a while.
I don't think we've spoken
since before the wedding.
You know, I never got
a chance to tell you
how truly sorry I am about the wedding
and what happened at the wedding,
how the wedding didn't happen.
- What are you doing?
- I don't know.
I read your proposal, Terrance.
I'm voting no.
I respect your views on the casino.
But if you would allow me to explain
First you explain why
you showed up at my house
with this home-wrecker.
Oh, well,
technically I was a
double-wide trailer-wrecker.
But I totally hear
Will you shut the hell up?
Rayanne and I may not agree on much,
but we both think you're a cold snake.
You ruined the best years of Ray's life.
And now you parade your
elitist college education
in our faces.
She begged me to bring her here.
And I was dumb enough to try to help.
No, that's not true.
The truth is you never deserved Ray,
and you have no sense
of community or family.
Now tell her it's her fault
that Ray married a white woman.
Oh, come on.
It's your fault Ray
married a white woman.
What else?
Come for me.
Nathan, I have 911 dialed.
Just tell me to press send, please.
Someone get my gun out of the glove box.
You brought a gun in my car?
I'm calling 911.
Okay, the service is super spotty here.
Oh, you're not man enough to face me.
I need a new combatant.
Oh, yes,
a classic bout,
the pale face versus the dark savage.
Fuck you just call me?
You can't say that.
Oh? Why not?
Because you can't.
Oh! Whoa, there it is.
There it is, the fire of your ancestors.
Set it free!
- Set it free!
- Ahh!
Okay, uh,
did he just die or pass out?
I can't tell, but he's
looking very pale-faced.
Oh, my God.
- Holy shit.
- Oh, my God.
- Oh, my God. What are we gonna
- Oh, my God.
Okay, yes,
I tricked you for my own benefit,
but also your benefit.
You chomped me and then
somehow convinced me
to dunk myself in butter and hurl myself
back into your jaws.
you're a story with
a bunch of loose ends.
No one likes a complicated story.
That's why everyone
hated Cloud Atlas.
I just gave you an ending.
By now Rayanne has told
everyone what happened.
And those quietly on your side can say,
"Okay, let's move on."
And those that hate you,
which frankly is most people,
have been given sense of catharsis
and can let this go.
Why are you doing this?
Why are you helping me?
I think you might be a shark too.
Only a shark would leave
a comfortable life with Ray
to carve your own path.
Only a shark would talk
to me the way you do.
You need to channel your inner power
to get what you want.
And I need people like
you to get what I want.
[phone buzzes]
Reagan, I may have
just witnessed a murder.
Bobbie, take Nathan's car
and get yourselves home.
I'm gonna go back and clean up.
You guys really trashed the place.
You know what? It's fine.
I know Susie Pete at State Parks.
Just leave a note for her to call me.
Vandalize public
property and leave a note.
Oh, to live that "white dude" life.
[light guitar music]

I got to tell you something.
You were right about Kaufman.
That guy is not good.
And I think he might
have a drinking problem.
Oh, you're kidding.
The barfy drunk that I
described as a barfy drunk
turned out to be a barfy drunk?
Yeah, go figure.
Thank you.
Thank you for just
always being there for me.
I really appreciate it.
Of course.
How are you doing? How was your day?
It was fine,
until I went to Ray's mom's house.
Why would you do that?
- That woman hates you.
- Ugh.
Basically, Terry asked if I
[groans] Ahh!
Pardon me, my dear, but
might you do a kindness
for a weary traveling poet and ferry me
to the New Horizons Detox Center
in San Luis Obispo?
I am not driving you to California.
Very well, there's an
abandoned Sam Goody just ahead.
You may drop me there.
They know me.
- Terrifying.
- Whew.
[upbeat music]
Kaitlyn again.

Kaitlyn, hey, quick lid update for ya.
First white baby?
Are you kidding me?
So you're you're up to speed.
Yes, I've already dealt with it,
which means I've spent, like, nine hours
cleaning up your messes.
It should be zero hours.
Okay, if I have to call you back again,
there are going to be
significant repercussions.
Do you understand me?
Uh, quick question just for clarity.
Okay. [phone beeps]
Uh okay.
Oh, great.
Well, I respect and admire you as well.
- Whew.
- Okay, bye now.
[funky music]

"Item donated from private collection."
Whose collection?
Um mine.
I repatriated it.
I stole it.
You look fancy.
Big meetings today.
Our hard work paid off.
If I need you to come
up and get yelled at,
I'll let you know.
Uh great.

I'm in.
Thank you, Rayanne.
That's great.
Impressive work, Terry.
You got the entire council
in, the chairwoman to sign off.
You may proceed.
Drop the papers.
We're gonna sue Nathan Rutherford.
[upbeat funky music]
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