The Wonder Years (2021) s01e14 Episode Script

Country Dean

In Alabama, what most people called "spring break" was called A.
It had something to do with a week-long teachers conference, blah, blah, blah, blah.
All we cared about was no school.
Lots of my friends went on trips with their families to the mountains or the beach, but I was gonna spend my vacation in my happy place On the couch, in front of the TV.
I planned to eat cereal till my teeth fell out and watch cartoons till my eyeballs fell out.
Basically, if something didn't fall out, I failed.
- Get dressed, Dean.
- And pack your suitcase.
W-What? It's my vacation.
I've been looking forward to it for weeks.
Change of plans.
We're going to visit Grandpa and Grandma's farm.
We're going to the country?! Why?! Contrary to popular belief, there's a difference between growing up in "the South" and growing up in "the Country.
" I did the former.
My mom and dad did the latter.
This is how I grew up.
And this was them.
My groceries.
Their groceries.
My chores.
Their chores.
Okay, that last one may have been over a hundred years ago, but that's how old they seemed to me.
My point We were not the same.
Your Grandpa called and said he needed my help with something.
And as you know, family always comes first.
But I-I planned out my whole week.
There's a good episode of The Beverly Hillbillies.
Jethro gets a pet kangaroo.
Grandma and Grandpa don't even have a TV.
It's so boring there.
Don't you dare call my parents "boring.
" It's been a minute since we visited, and it'd be good for you to spend some time with them.
Don't get me wrong I loved Grandma Bessie and Big Jim, especially when they visited us.
But going to the country was a pain.
And the fresh air will do you good.
I hate the fresh air.
Oh, please don't say that in front of my mother.
She doesn't need any more ammunition to judge my parenting.
You two have a complicated relationship.
Well, it's tricky with mothers and daughters.
I'm all packed.
If that little piece of cloth is what you call "clothing," then clearly, I need to check everything else in your little suitcase.
What? You don't trust me to do anything.
If you're referring to that trip with your friends, then the answer's still no.
I'm going to college soon.
Why can't you let me go away for one weekend? What's the difference? The difference is college is not in the back of a van driven by a boy named Kwame.
And pack your boots.
You're gonna be helping your Grandpa in the fields.
- Could you at least - Are you serious?! And just like that, my dreams of a week off from school were shattered.
Instead, I was going to experience two of the unhappiest words in the English language "No TV.
" After three hours in the car, two fights between Mom and Kim, and one pee break, we pulled up to the family homestead.
Where are my grand-babies? - I need some hugs.
- Hey, Grandma.
- Hey, Grandpa.
- Look at you.
Kim, when did you turn into a woman? And is this Dean? Oh, my goodness.
You've got even more handsome! Lillian, are you feeding these children? - They're so skinny! - Feed them.
I knew I was forgetting something.
I hope y'all don't talk to your parents as fresh as your mama talks to me.
Bessie, great to see you, too.
I brought something for you.
- Oh.
- My latest 45.
How sweet.
'Course I can't play it, 'cause it's the devil's music.
But I am going to hang it up so I can brag on my talented son-in-law! - All right.
- I'm glad you're here, Bill.
I could really use your help.
She's about ready to drive.
Still need to replace all the fluids.
And I'll make sure that me and you stay well-lubricated, too.
You the boss, Big Jim.
Daddy, is that why you brought us here? To sip on whiskey and work on that old jalopy? No, no, we've got a real problem.
Let's discuss it over some sweet tea.
We're so glad you're here, baby.
You look good.
Yes, you do.
I guess you're enjoying all those salons you're spending all your money on up there.
No way! Maybe this wasn't gonna be as bad as I thought! Hold your horses.
We only turn that on for two programs The news and Lawrence Welk.
Nope, it was exactly as bad as I thought.
Maybe just one cartoon? Won't be having you use up all our electricity.
I hope that rule doesn't apply to the telephone.
They'd have to sell the farm to cover your long-distance bill.
So, we got some trouble with the neighbors.
They say our cow has been coming onto their property to graze, and they want to build a fence to stop her.
Big fuss over nothing! I don't know why they think it's their land.
It's always been our land.
Well, they don't agree.
And they done gone and hired a lawyer.
Why'd they have to get a lawyer involved? My cow is pregnant.
She doesn't need the agitation.
She's eating for two.
She needs as much grass as she can get! Still, it would be good for you to take a look at what the lawyers sent us.
Don't bother Lillian with that! It's just a couple of letters.
Well, what does it say? They all say the same thing.
I don't have time to read every last one.
It's planting season.
Which is harder now because the clock's moving forward because of your President Johnson.
Oh, so now I'm wrong for voting.
Without television, watching them fight was the most entertaining show around.
Still, Mama was no Shecky Greene.
Well, you can't keep ignoring this.
I'd be happy to take care of it.
We appreciate it.
"Take care of it"? Which means "take over.
" That's just like her, trying to control everybody.
Kim, don't be disrespectful to your mother.
Wonder where she learned that from.
Bessie, our daughter is as smart as any lawyers.
Let her help.
At least Mama had something to do.
I was already bored.
Time to get to work.
Dean, come on.
You might learn a thing or two from your Grandpa.
Ugh! Can't you see I'm busy being bored? Mm, mm.
Transmission fluid tastes burnt.
Could be a crack in the fluid line.
Don't worry.
It won't hurt him.
But too much of this will definitely make you go blind.
Years later, when I took a sip from Grandpa's flask, I got the joke.
Then I threw up and passed out.
Dean, look, your cousins are coming.
Well, some were cousins, some were second cousins, some were cousins of my play cousins I-I never knew for sure.
Like I said, country.
They're gonna help me shuck corn.
You wanna come? Go.
It'll do you good to reconnect with them.
And I pay a dime a bushel.
A day with my country cousins? I'd rather drink a gallon of transmission fluid.
But it didn't seem like I had much of a choice.
So, you live in Montgomery, right? - What's that like? - It's okay.
What do you do for fun? Um baseball, I guess.
If we make the finals, we get to play in Paterson Field, where the Montgomery Rebels play.
Yeah, my team's really counting on me.
I bat around .
I just made my third All-Star team.
Whoa, cool! All right, all right, I was basically describing my brother Bruce, but these kids would never know that.
Yep, I got some high school coaches interested in me.
Of course I have a girlfriend! Her name's Keisa.
She's the prettiest girl in school.
Crazy about me.
Sure, I go to concerts all the time.
I even get a chance to play with my dad's band whenever he needs a soloist.
As we got comfortable with each other, my cousins shared details of their "embellished" lives.
Well, that's cool.
We mostly do stuff outdoors.
Like jumping our dirt-bikes off that 20-foot hill.
The mounts aren't back yet, but the taxidermist says it's the biggest buck he's ever seen.
When I turn 14 next month, I'm gonna get my driver's license.
No way.
They call it an agricultural license.
So we can drive tractors on the road and stuff.
Motorcycles, too.
Okay, that actually sounded legit.
And pretty cool.
I had to keep up! Uh, yeah, my dad's teaching me to drive right now.
So he can send me out for a pack of smokes whenever he needs to.
Your dad, Bill Williams, teaching you to drive now? Granddad.
Right, right.
Of course he is.
Well, there you go.
So, we gonna see you tomorrow, Dean? Sure will.
Oh, and call me "DJ.
" 'Cause my middle name starts with a "J.
" That's what everybody calls me back in Montgomery.
Yeah, nobody ever called me that.
But I felt like a cool cousin from the city should have a cool nickname.
Come on, uh DJ.
Time to get back to the house.
Planting season continues to progress Is that Green Acres?! Nope.
Morning farm report on the news.
You wanna watch? A show about a farm that doesn't have a pig who can drive? No, thanks.
- Morning, Big Jim.
- Morning.
Dean, wanna come ride bikes? We got one for you, too.
At least that's kind of similar to what I'd be doing at home.
You guys make your bikes yourselves? Yeah, there's always parts lying around.
I just get a new bike whenever I outgrow my old one.
You mean whenever you outgrow Bruce's old one? All right.
Here you go.
Where are we gonna ride? I dunno.
Where do you ride at home? Oh, all over the city.
But if I was at home right now, I'd be sitting in front of a TV until my eyes dried out.
You get to watch that much TV? Well, yeah, when school's out.
I don't see how you guys survive without it.
I mean, some of us have TVs, but not ones we can watch all the time.
We have four.
Whoa! There's only one place I know with that many.
Where? That's the episode where Mrs.
Kravitz thinks Darrin and Samantha have a baby.
My neighbor in Montgomery, Ms.
Stringer, is nosy just like that.
Ooh! And that's the one where Gomer and Sergeant Carter lose the Colonel's dog.
I'm not saying they stole the idea, but same thing happened to me and my friend Cory.
Oh, and that? That's The Mod Squad, where they catch car thieves.
Just like the crime in Montgomery.
I'm telling you exactly what they said at the courthouse There's no record of you owning this land! What do you call this? My mama's granddad was a sharecropper on this land.
He bought it from the man that owned it Paid him a little each month till it was his, free and clear.
The proof's right here.
I got a map, too.
Here is the boundary between us and the neighbor's.
Goes from the creek to the rock pile to the walnut tree The tree's gone, but you can still see the stump.
Yeah, I-I don't think the county is gonna accept that.
Why'd you need to get the government involved?! Next thing you know, they're gonna make us pay taxes! I'm gon' pretend like I didn't just hear that.
Uh what I think we should do is get a lawyer.
Bill and I can help pay for it.
What now? This one of those lawyers we can pay with a chicken or something? Oh, so it's not enough for you to stir up trouble, now you're gonna start throwing your money around? We're not throwing money around.
We just want to help out.
Right, Bill? Of course.
I'll go up to three chickens, but that's it.
You're gonna love this, DJ.
We jump into there from up there.
There's no way you guys actually do that.
I know you're not scared, DJ.
Yeah, this is nothing compared to the gunfire you said you fall asleep to in Montgomery.
And the interstate highway you said you walk across to get to school.
DJ! DJ! DJ! DJ! DJ! It shouldn't have mattered.
It was just a childish dare.
But I felt like all my previous arguments about how I was growing up was better than how they were growing up rested on me proving there was nothing they could do that I couldn't.
It all came down to this moment.
DJ! DJ! DJ! DJ! DJ! DJ! Aww! DJ? Grandma, you made all this by yourself? Said she didn't want any help.
I didn't think you'd have the energy to cook after a day of meddling in people's business.
And you stripped all that corn the kids shucked without breaking a nail? Uh-oh.
We got another city gal on our hands.
Well, sweetie, let me fix your plate.
Oh, the patriarchy's alive and well.
She only doing this to compete with her mother.
Don't overthink it, son.
Enjoy it till it's over.
Bill, I made those buttermilk biscuits because I know you love 'em.
Well, you know, Mama, I use that same recipe.
My recipe's different.
It's not written down like yours.
Well, I learned it from watching you, so I don't see how it's different.
Because writing it down makes it taste different.
Now I see where Mama gets it from.
But do you see where you get it from? Don't you agree, Bill? Well I think everybody's biscuits are perfect.
It's over.
So, Bill, you'll be leaving soon.
Let's finish up the car after supper.
She should be ready to drive by morning.
Grandpa was right.
We'd be going home soon.
Time was running out for me to redeem myself.
I had one shot to prove to my cousins that my city life was superior.
Whoa, DJ! You really can drive! Of course I can, guys.
I told you, I do it all the time.
No biggie.
It was a moment of pure triumph.
And you know what? Driving a car was a lot easier than I thought.
As if a whooping wasn't enough punishment for my automotive mishap, my grandparents gave me the worst farm chore of all.
Come on, now.
The manure's not gonna shovel itself.
Mama, I spoke to the lawyer, and he's got a solution.
He can get you a deed for the land based on proof of continued residency.
And the neighbors have agreed to give you an easement.
What does that mean? It means they own the land in dispute, but they'll let you use it for the cow to graze.
All you have to do is sign these papers.
What kind of solution is that? I ain't gonna give them my land! It's been in my family for generations.
Mama, a map drawn on the back of a 1904 Sears catalog is not gonna hold up in a court of law.
I ain't gonna give 'em this land without a fight.
And we know you love to fight.
What does that mean? Ever since I've been here, you've had something to say about every little thing I do.
'Cause you come in here thinking you're better than us! You're not the only one smart enough to go to college.
Mama, we know.
We know that college wasn't an option for a Black woman when you were coming up.
College was an option for me.
I was gonna study veterinary medicine at A&M.
But your grandma wouldn't let me go.
Told the admissions man that she needed me too much here on the farm.
Well, why couldn't Big Granny see that it would've been better for you in the long run? 'Cause she'd never seen anybody do it.
So I made sure I worked damn hard here so I'd get to see somebody do it.
And, Mama, I appreciate it.
But you can't be blaming me for what I had nothing to do with.
I know you appreciate what I gave you.
But sometimes it's hard to see from three hours away.
Grandma, is Lurleen okay? She's probably in labor.
Oh, no.
It's breeched.
What's that mean? Baby's coming out backwards.
She needs our help.
Uh, Lillian, get me the Already got it.
Is the cord wrapped? Doesn't look like it.
But the water bag ain't broke yet.
Need to get in there and pop it.
No, not with your arthritis.
Let me do it.
I hardly recognized you.
Yeah, it all just came back to me.
How long has it been, 20 years? At least.
Well, Mama, I want you to know there is no amount of time or distance that will take this place out of me.
That's nice, baby.
But you gotta toughen that boy up.
That's for sure! I should've put a blanket down for him! Mama and Grandma were finally united In making fun of me.
But it made me realize that I was guilty of what Grandma accused Mama of.
I'd been approaching my time in the country all wrong.
I realized that part of this place was in me, just like it was in Mama, and I shouldn't have been trying to run from that all this time.
So on my last day, I let my cousins awaken the "Country Dean" in me.
You want to squeeze the trigger.
Don't jerk it.
Bam! We should call you "Eagle Eye DJ.
" Nah.
"Dean" is fine.
So, guess you'll be happy getting back to all the things you do in Montgomery.
Actually, I can't wait till we come back here.
Can we name the calf Melvin? And can I help take care of him the next time I come? - Oh, sure.
- Yes! Put those in the trunk, son.
We'll be right out.
Look like next time, we'll have some body work to do on the car, thanks to Dean.
Goes to show how good a job we did on that transmission A 12-year-old could drive it.
- Mm-hmm.
- Uh-huh.
Where are the easement papers? Mom, did you I signed them.
I figure it's the only way to end this business you stirred up.
Let's go home, baby.
Uh, excuse me.
Uh, we just stopped by to pick up some papers.
Are you the neighbors? Yeah, I'm Gerald.
This is my wife, Edith.
- Hi.
- Hi, I'm Lillian.
"The" Lillian.
What do you mean? Your mama will not stop bragging on you.
No offense, but everyone in town is sick and tired of Bessie talking about her big-shot daughter - in the city! - Mm-hmm.
Is that so? Yes, Mama, I just wanted to let you know we got home safe.
I know.
I miss you already, too.
I never understood how Mama and Grandma would be so mean to each other, then cry about how they'd miss each other so much.
And, no, I'm not trying to waste up all your electricity.
I'mma hang up now.
Love you.
Kim, that is not how you slice a tomato! Cut against the core You know what? Nothing wrong with your way.
You just keep on being you.
Um okay.
Those don't look like chickens we buy from the store.
It isn't.
They're from the farm.
Wh Lucy and Peggy?! They were my friends.
Better not tell him he gon' be eating Melvin in two years.

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