Not A Couple Show Notes: Will & Grace Episode 2.08 — “Terms of Employment”

Get it? He only likes *crushing* the nuts.

Man, it’s been a tough week.

After skipping a Thursday due to election depression, we returned to the airwaves this week with another episode of Will & Grace, albeit one recorded before the election. But this episode turned out to be a fitting one to come after one of the most painful election defeats a liberal politician’s suffered in decades: good idea with a terrible execution.

It is worth noting — at the climax of this episode’s main plot, someone who’s recently attained power despite the gay identity that keeps him out of the mainstream has to decide whether to go with the flow or stand up for the friend who’s about to get screwed by his powerful backers. There’s a good lesson there. One we may need to remember for the next four years.


Summary: In the first dud of Season 2, Will gets a new job on the condition that he ensure Grace loses a bunch of money in arbitration, and Jack gets a new job but then tries to ruin it by sticking his tongue too far in Karen’s ear. Matthew and Tess are not amused.

“This episode was brought to you by Margaret Atwood’s ‘The Handmaid’s Tale,’ the 1985 post-nuclear rapey dystopia novel that’s horrible and hopefully isn’t what 2017 looks like.”

Things That Happen

00:00: Disclaimer: We recorded this episode before the terrible thing that happened last week.

2:00: This episode of W&G is definitely not as interesting as it sounds.

3:57: Jack booked a gig in an anti-sexual harassment ad campaign. It goes as badly as you think, but not the way you think.

Tess: “I am a person who has experienced someone licking my ear. And it’s nice.”
Matthew: “But it’s not that nice.”
Tess: “And I wouldn’t do it with my friends. I wouldn’t walk up to Matthew and stick my tongue in his ear. 
Matthew: “I hope not.”
Tess: “Well, maybe if I was drunk.”

6:34: There are so many different, better directions to take this B-plot.

Jack: “Me again, me again. And put your boobies away. I’m trying to imagine Matt Damon.”

7:30: They keep trying to make Jack and Karen happen, and EWW.

10:07: The A-plot seems more promising … at first.

13:10: Grace may not actually have a case here.

Will: “According to paragraph 3 of the contract, any of Ms. Adler’s purchases had to be mutually agreed upon by both parties. Ms. Adler made said purchases without the consent of my client, therefore, he should not be required to pay.”
Grace: “My choices were gorgeous. Defense rests.”

14:33: Will’s new boss doesn’t run a chocolate factory, but he’s definitely playing Willy Wonka.

16:45: Matthew and Tess disagree on whether or not Grace deserves to still be employed as an interior designer this week.

Matthew: “When (Grace) realizes that her legal arguments are nonsense, she makes an impassioned plea for the mercy of the court. Now, to be fair, there isn’t a court or a bench or a judge or a jury.”
Tess: “And she also tried to bribe the arbitrator with a very nice picnic lunch.”

18:35: Ben Doucette proves to be an interesting, smart new tertiary character.

Link Roundup

Stay Angry: We could go through a long, long list of ways you can support liberal organizations and resist Trump, but other, awesome people have done a lot of that legwork for us. Just one of the many lists of charities opposed to Trump and Republican policies, compiled at Jezebel. Lauren Evans, also at Jezebel: “How to Fight Back in Trump’s America”. Here’s a script for what you say when you call your congressional representatives. And here’s some tips for self-care because we the people are going to need that.

The Handmaid’s Tale: Margaret Atwood has written A LOT of amazing amazing things, but her personal Mount Everest is this 1985 dystopian novel about a world where conservative leaders take over and rip every one of women’s rights away (sound familiar?). Thirty years later, the novel still holds up, to the point where even if Trump hadn’t won the election it would still be a relevant warning. We’ll get to see Elizabeth Moss and Samira Wiley in a 10-episode adaptation on Hulu next year, assuming we still have a United States of America then.

Ear Sex: There isn’t a good quality clip online of the Family Guy scene where Lois catches Meg and her boyfriend doing it in the ear. And you know what? We think we’re all better for that.

Matt Damon: This is actually a better choice of Hollywood hunk than usual for Jack, since Mr. Damon would have recently portrayed the gay con artist Mr. Ripley —The Talented Mr. Ripley, to be precise. Fun fact, Wikipedia wormholes are distracting, but now we know that the same author wrote the Ripley novels and The Price of Salt aka Carol. Such sneaky gays.

Who is Keyser Söze?: Here’s the TV Tropes page for The Usual Suspects. Go nuts.

“Angry, mad, feeling, bad”: “My heart is hurting … and it feels … bad!”

Seriously, how did we not immediately realize Vincent Rodriguez III has a husband after this dance?

Next Episode: S02E09: “I Never Promised You An Olive Garden”