May 28, 2020
Family Ties “A, My Name is Alex” (part 5 of 5)
And that brings us to a completely gratuitous appearance by Mallory’s boyfriend Nick, one of the breakout characters of the later seasons. He wanders onto the experimental theater set in his low rent Rambo outfit, indulging in his usual sub-Stallone antics with a big, “Eyyyy… Al-ex!”
Alex wants to know what he’s doing here. Um, because at the time, Family Ties was quickly turning into The Nick Show? Mike, you’re just lucky the show ended before he Urkel-ized all of you. Nick explains that he’s here because “Dese all the people in your life! I’m in your life!”
Understandably, Alex doesn’t want to use up valuable therapy time talking about Nick. Nick is offended in his usual, Rocky-lite, mangled English way: “You don’t think I ain’t got nothin’ to teach you?”
But Alex reassures/mocks him with, “No, Nick, I don’t think you ain’t got nothing to teach me.” This causes Mrs. Leahy to freak out over on the classroom set, and she turns around in her chair to scold Alex for his bad grammar. Oh good, now I’m watching figments of a guy’s imagination fighting with each other. Somebody kill me.
Nick takes off, but not before insisting that he does in fact represent some part of Alex’s psyche. Or words to that effect, anyway. Just insert lots of “dese” and “dose” and you’ll have a good idea of how Nick puts it.
And then, with absolutely no warning whatsoever, Alex starts lip syncing to Steppenwolf’s “Born to be Wild”. No, I’m serious. This is what we’ve come to. Michael J. Fox lamely playing air guitar, and painfully trying to rock out to “Born to be Wild”… while wearing a tie. What is… I mean I don’t even… They were just completely out of ideas at this point, weren’t they?
His parents are suddenly intruding on his spotlight, which I guess is supposed to be his bedroom. Alex mimes turning off a stereo, telling them he was just studying. It seems they’re here to beam over his latest report card, and again drill into our heads how much of a genius he is. But then Mallory’s set lights up, and she knows Alex wasn’t studying. She knows he was actually listening to Steppenwolf and “Jim Morrison and the Doors”. Alex says Greg is the one who likes the Doors, not him.
Abruptly, Greg is here, and now the two guys are having Impromptu Hairbrush Karaoke (yes!! I finally got to use it!!) to “Light My Fire”. Alas, there’s plenty of time to wallow in the mire of this episode. Now the two guys are back to back, lip syncing, and it’s all kind of… well, I’m not sure I’ve ever gotten this physically intimate with my guy friends in my bedroom. Not that there’s anything wrong with it. But maybe there’s a very good reason Alex misses Greg so much.
The music ends, and Greg says he’s gotta go. Suddenly, Alex freaks out and tells Greg, “Stay here with me in this room forever!” Greg is taken aback, and randomly mentions that they’re both 14, but Alex says that “in a blink, you’re gonna be 21 like me!” He also warns Greg that he’ll be killed in a car accident. Now just hold on there, Marty. What would Doc Brown say about meddling in the timeline like this? (Yeah, yeah, I know: “What the hell?”)