American Dreams

Season 1 Episode 9

The Home Front

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Dec 01, 2002 on NBC

Episode Recap

Luke asks Meg and Roxanne to come to a rehearsal of a choir that he's involved with on the same night that J.J. is asked out on a date by an older woman. But where Meg gets home a little past curfew, J.J. spends the night with his new love interest. When, Jack, hears it, he grounds Meg, but lets J.J. off with a warning. Meg can't go out for her first official date with Luke. But J.J. is free to continue seeing Colleen as long as he's careful and gets in before dawn.
When Meg and Helen, hear about this, neither can believe it or the double standard that Jack is promoting. Meg makes her feelings known to Helen who tells her that she too, is upset, but that's her father's decision and she must abide by it. Meg decides not to and attempts to sneak out anyway for her date with Luke. Unfortunately on her way out the door, she runs into J.J. who's returning home from football practice. He agrees with their father and thinks North Philly, where Luke is playing, is no place for his younger sister. So, he tells her that if she leaves he'll tell on her. Realizing there's no escape, Meg turns on back and heads back into the house. J.J. decides to be the nice big brother and goes to North Philly to tell Luke why Meg didn't come to the concert. Luke shows up at Meg's house, tells her what J.J. did, and the two share a nice moment outside under the stars.
While Jack can wield his authority over his children, he discovers it's not quite so easy to wield said authority over his wife. Helen is on the pill and has been for a couple of weeks. There's just one thing, she never told Jack that she was on it. Although they did discuss not having a fifth child, she never included him in the decision to go on the pill. When he finds out about her secret, he has it out with her. While she admits that she was wrong not to tell him, she feels the decision was the only one to be made. It's safe and it's the most reliable. Jack concedes and admits that while he was caught off guard when he found the pills, he knows that they did talk about it. He was there when they decided not to have another child and he knew something was going to be done, he just never thought it was going to be the pill. Although Jack grudgingly allows Helen to continue with the medication, he asks that in the future she talk with him before she makes any decisions that affect them both. She promises she will.