S01 E21 - TOW the Ick Factor
TOW…A Beeper and a Walkman
SIGNATURE BEVERAGE: "Improved" Gin Sling
We cringed right along with Monica at the thought of her sleeping with someone who wasn't alive during the bicentennial, but perked up at the thought of a cocktail inspired by the bicentennial! We couldn't find anything apropos for the country's birthday, but we did find several recipes for cocktails created to mark a different 200th anniversary from May 2006:
The 200th anniversary of the word "cocktail" first appearing in print. Specifically, in The Balance and Columbian Repository of Hudson, N.Y., which said:
"Cock tail, then, is a stimulating liquor composed of spirits of any kind, sugar, water, and bitters — It is said also, to be of great use to a Democratic candidate: because, a person having swallowed a glass of it, is ready to swallow any thing else."
Heather made a gin sling featured in the Wall Street Journal, and Elizabeth (when the WSJ locked her out of re-reading the recipe) made an "improved" gin sling featured in the New York Times. Heather used southern Florida's Tamiami gin and cream sherry, serving her drink up with soda water in a highball glass.
Elizabeth's cocktail is a martini-style beverage, and she didn't have any absinthe, so she substituted a licorice-flavored liqueur she picked up on her honeymoon in Cancún four years ago -- Xtabentún. She also failed to control the deluge of simple syrup that flowed out into her cocktail shaker, but upon recreating the cocktail after our recording session, found that it was just as delightful with the correct amount of simple syrup added.
Monica's all aflutter as she prepares for "The Date" with Young Ethan. She's so flustered that she momentarily forgets that she made lasagna, not fish. She also grabs croutons from a giant bowl of croutons (because we all have giant bowls of croutons lying around, right?) as she makes what we're assuming is a Caesar salad to go with the lasagna.
On the actual date, she's pouring very heavy pours of red wine. While wearing a cream-colored sweater. And sitting on her white couch. She really isn't thinking straight, is she?
At the coffee shop, Joey's got a scone -- and uses it to demonstrate his Chandler impression: "My scone! MY scoooooooone!"
On the podcast, Elizabeth talked about making a buckwheat banana bread using buckwheat flour she picked up at a mill while visiting her stepsister in North Carolina. You can go there and visit the mill cat yourself!
Someone's drinking pink lemonade, someone's drinking soda, and Ross is asking if anyone in Rachel's dream is handing out mints. Poor Ross -- he's so desperate to make it into Rachel's subconscious that he's ready to do it armed only with a handful of Tic-Tacs!
Monica grabs a Lipton Iced Tea after her workout. Phoebe drinks from an orange juice juice-box at Chandler's office (so cute). And finally, Joey brings a HUGE muffaletta-esque sandwich along for the cab ride to the hospital.
Rachel starts things off with a cute, short-sleeved denim button-down with a feminine apron with a scalloped edge. Next up is an outfit that's reminiscent of the 1950s: a navy-and-red-striped shirt with black capris. One of the more retro and stylish looks Rachel's sported thus far. She rocks a brown sleeveless sweater, then a blue sleeveless midriff sweater. She closes out the episode in Heather's favorite -- overalls! She pairs her black overalls with a white shirt with subtle black stripes.
Monica starts things off with an oddly structured brown pin-striped jumper and cream short-sleeved sweater. When she adds the suit jacket, it all becomes just too much! For "The Date" with young Ethan, she opts for another cream sweater and pants -- a rather odd choice when one is trying to be seductive, but this is Monica, so perhaps she thinks this is seductive? She sports (see what we did there?) a classic Nike sports bra and bicycle shorts for her workout, pairing them with a brownish-maroon hoodie and ... a classic cassette Walkman! She finishes things off with a gray button-down dress (that features prominently in the next episode, as do the rest of the gang's outfits, since this episodes segues directly into the next.)
Phoebe's got an interesting (and very pre-quirky Phoebe) polka-dot/patterned vest/dress/skirt thing on in the beginning of the episode. Working at Chandler’s office, she switches into a sheer lace blouse, upholstery vest, long skirt, and what look like clip-on earrings. She looks professional, but still quirky -- lots of rings and a hip necklace. She's got a very Phoebe outfit on next -- a burnt orange skirt paired with a black shirt and sequined vest. She finishes out the episode in a cream shirt, horizontal striped vest, floral skirt, and work boots.
Ross's expression in this episode is priceless: He's clearly overwhelmed, but not so much that he can't put a good outfit together. He start off wearing a plaid shirt while reading Anthropology Weekly, then transitions into a black suit with a blue striped button-down shirt and tie. He switches into a denim button-down and khakis (a common look for him, but he looks good in blue, so we're here for it.) He spends the rest of the episode (and the entirety of Ben's birth in the next episode) in a tan suit, striped shirt, and upholstery tie.
What's with the extra slicked-back look in your hair, Chandler? We no likey! It just doesn't do anything for us. He sports that entirely-too-producted hairstyle with one of his retro shirts at the beginning of the episode, then moves into an olive suit and brown tie at work. Heather is very much NOT a fan of the oddly patterned navy blue and olive-colored polo shirt he wears at the girls' apartment. He's in another suit -- charcoal this time -- then finishes out the episode in a truly hideous sweatpants-t-shirt-hoodie combo -- a look that he is forced to wear for the entirety of the next episode, because Carol had the audacity to go into labor before he could regain his sanity long enough to change into a more decent outfit.
Joey's pretty blah and background to this episode, and his attire matches that sentiment. He's in a basic black sweater to start, moves into a plaid shirt and jeans, then a brown sweater and black pants. He finishes things out in another dark sweater.
Oh, the 90s! Where do we start? We've got blurry plaid, bright blue jeans, and a black belt -- all on the same unfortunately aged gentleman (if you're allowed to call guys "gentlemen" before they hit puberty). He's a cute character, and his attire is so completely reminiscent of the 1990s that we're almost willing to give him a pass for making Monica a felon in 48 states.
But not quite. Bad Ethan! Now go to your room -- and NO, you don't get any of Monica's leftover lasagna for dinner!
Phoebe working for Chandler: What could possibly go awry? The episode starts off with a highly sexist joke from Joey when Phoebe asks if they could see her operating a drill press and he responds, "I don't know, what are you wearing?" This leads us to learn that Phoebe's out of a job because she taught her clients how to massage themselves at home. Chandler hesitatingly offers her a temp job as his secretary, and she takes the role to the max by channeling a sultry 1950s secretary, complete with husky voice and clip-on earrings.
This temporary arrangement helps move forward the arc of Chandler's work story; through Phoebe, he learns that his former coworkers (and now his subordinates) don't like him anymore because he's "Mr. Bing! Boss Man Bing!" Heather, our in-house Boss Lady, relayed some tips on staying in touch with former coworkers when you're promoted above them.
In our second archaic piece of technology in the episode, Ross gets a BEEPER so that Carol can get in touch with him as soon as she goes into labor. His phone number: 55-JIMBO (that's 555-4626 for those of you who don't like spelling out phone numbers). Hilarity ensues when Ross keeps receiving calls meant for André, the owner of the phone number 55-JUMBO. André apparently performs "services" that involve a kimono and that leave Ross knowing "he'd be a huge disappointment" were he to try to fill André's ... shoes.
Poor Monica: She's just found out that she had sex with a minor. Specifically, a minor who "wasn't alive during the bicentennial." We couldn't help but notice that Monica, clutching her blue-green sheet to her chest with rockin' arm muscles, resembles Lady Liberty, who featured prominently in bicentennial celebrations in 1976.
The gang has a field day making fun of how young Young Ethan is (they really laid into her before they knew she'd accidentally committed statutory rape, and only Ross was brave enough to make fun of her after they found that out.) They mentioned Power Rangers and Muppet Babies in particular to emphasize Young Ethan's wee age, and we are NOT ashamed to say that we loved those shows (well, Elizabeth's the only one who loved Power Rangers -- especially the Pink Ranger!)
Finally, we've got the plot line of Rachel having naughty dreams about the guys. Chandler's on cloud nine because he's the first to enter Rachel's subconscious (although he has to apologize to Ross about it), then Joey joins in on the fun. Ross is very perturbed that he hasn't even been given the dream-role of passing out mints.
In a rather hokey and over-the-top performance at the end of the episode, Rachel talks in her sleep and this time, Ross is the leading man of her literal dreams. Ross is ecstatic (although it's kinda creepy that he's just sitting there listening to her talk to herself) and dances on the table. Nice creeper move, Ross.
BONUS CONTENT: LIPSTICK AND SHOPPING
On the podcast, we talked about how Elizabeth wore a bold lipstick for the first time, and we discussed some of the possible reasons her husband's reaction to it was less than enthusiastic -- because let's face it, she looked hot!
Heather regaled us with a story about shopping on a recent trip to Boston. She's so good at shopping, she effortlessly managed to match the store's logo!
Rachel holding the base of the coffee pot
Petri repeats his line about Stevie Wonder -- or at least the shot is repeated but looking at Chandler. This happens A LOT -- guess it’s so they can fit in some laugh track when a joke didn’t get a prolonged laugh during taping? Otherwise he’d be talking into the laugh…
They must’ve taken the light fixture from the living room or else Ross would’ve hit his head on it dancing on the table.
That stupid fake wall is in the guy’s apartment again.
Continuity Kudos: Books and magazines on 4th wall are facing in towards the apartment now! Nice job, Jeff!
NOT ON NETFLIX
Monica defending herself by saying Ethan is mature and grown-up, then Ross mocking her by saying, “Mature AND grown-up; he’s a big boy!”
Monica: “You’re such a good kisser, I would never have known” | Ethan: “I’ve excelled at every level I’ve been to, I just haven’t been to that particular one, yet.”
Monica: “I’m nuts about you … I knew it from the first time we kissed when I had that Tic Tac under my tongue and you didn’t mention it.” | Ethan: “I just thought you were naturally minty.”
Ross: “Yes, the kimonos are extra.”
Ross fake comforting Monica, then mentioning that he’d be okay at 4:00 when Muppet Babies comes on
Chandler passing the football down the hall then apologizing to Shelly