Party of Five

Season 3 Episode 20


Aired Unknown Feb 19, 1997 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
30 votes

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Episode Summary

The Salinger family tries to solve Bailey's drinking problem. Claudia calls him and tells a story about Owen falling down the stairs. Bailey rushes to the house, when Charlie, Julia, Claudia, Grace and Sarah hold him. One by one, they all try to show Bailey that he has a drinking problem. He refuses to accept it and fights with everybody. Joe arrives and tells Bailey that his father had a drinking problem too, but he stayed sober 18 year until he died. Bailey doesn't believe it, but Charlie does and proves to be true. They all try to get Bailey into an AA program, but he refuses. When everybody had already given up, Claudia tells Bailey that if he doesn't face his problem and look for help, than he will no longer be a part of the family. Bailey leaves.moreless

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  • A landmark episode--1 hour of a young actress\'s finest performance!

    As any loyal \"Party of Five\" fan can easily attest to, this was one television show that approached drama and day-to-day realities without the slightest trace of shame, but Season 3\'s \"The Intervention\" is truly an episode that contemporary masterpieces are made of. Strengthened by the acting and fueld with its no-holds-barred plot, this is one hour of television that few \"Party of Five\" fans will ever forget.

    This series began as an impeccably scripted and beautifully acted study of what can happen when five young, immature kids are left alone to fend for themselves, without the support and guidance of their parents. The Salinger clan have been doing this ever since their parents died in a car crash, and how they managed to stay together is really something of a modern-day miracle. The downward spiral of second-oldest son Bailey establishes an uncomfortable turning point for the series, since he spent the first 2 seasons caring for everyone and constantly bailing his older brother Charlie out of countless predicaments (financial troubles, girlfriend issues and jail visits, to name just a few). The Salingers lose a great deal of emotional grounding when Bailey becomes consumed by alcohol, and this episode finds his siblings resorting desperately to an in-your-face intervention that could cost them their brother if it is not done correctly. Overwhelming emotional distress engulfs everyone as hurtful words are said and horrifying secrets are unveiled about their late parents\' pasts. As I mentioned at the beginning of this review, all the performances in \"The Intervention\" are absolutely top-notch, but seasoned actors Matthew Fox, Scott Wolf, and Neve Campbell are easily upstaged by a 13-year-old gem named Lacey Chabert. As an adolescent kid watching her beloved older brother risk ruining his entire life, the role of Claudia earns a level of respect and sympathy that was matched by nothing else in the entire series. I give Chabert an amazing amount of credit for her work here, and through all the film, television and voice-over roles she has had in recent years, I will always regard this series and this episode as her finest hour.

    Nobody who loves \"Party of Five\" will ever forget \"The Intervention\"--it is of brilliant quality and unforgettable substance that redefines everything the show built in its 6 years on the air.moreless
Mark Robman

Mark Robman

Man at Salinger's

Guest Star

Alex Baik

Alex Baik


Guest Star

Tom Mason

Tom Mason

Joe Mangus

Recurring Role

Tamara Taylor

Tamara Taylor

Grace Wilcox

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • This episode, because of its heavy subject matter, did not have its usual opening credits, instead the names of the cast were just shown alphabetically.

  • QUOTES (16)

    • Bailey: (hung over) Don't you ever go to the market anymore?
      Callie: I'm sorry. Did I become your mother when I wasn't looking? (phone rings)
      Bailey: Who the hell calls at this hour?
      Callie: It's noon.

    • Bailey: I haven't had a drink in, what? Like three days. What does that tell you?
      Julia: Honestly? That you're broke.

    • Bailey: Why are you crying?
      Sarah: Because I don't know how to help you.

    • Bailey: (to Sarah about his alcoholism and his parents) It's like... Claudia plays the violin. Julia looks like her, and Charlie looks like him... and this is what I got. This is what my father gave me.

    • Claudia: No, no, no! You can't do this, Bailey! I mean, you can't do this anymore!
      Bailey: Claudia--
      Bailey: No, Bailey! I mean it! That's it! That's it! I mean, if you don't...if you don't go and get help, then I don't want to see you. You can't come over here, and you can't see me, and you can't see Owen, and I'm not going to come and see you, and I'm not gonna call you, and...I'm not even gonna think about you.
      Joe: Claudia--
      Claudia: NO! (crying, turns to Bailey) I love you...more than anyone else. I love you the best. Do you know that? This is the only thing I have that I can take away from you, to make you stop. Either you get help right now, or get out of here.

    • Sarah: I don't know why I'm here. Why am I doing this to myself. Why do I keep doing this to myself?
      Julia: C'mon. You love him.
      Sarah: I'm not gonna stay. I'm gonna go.
      Julia: Sarah. Look. They're just words he's using. I know they hurt. But they're just words.
      Sarah: That's not...I mean, he says horrible, horrible things to you. But that doesn't change anything because you're his sister. You know, you can hate him and you're still his sister. But if I hate him? You know, if he says those things to me and I hate him...then why am I still here? You know, I end up being this...this pathetic person who's waiting around to see some...some glimmer of the way he used to be with me, and it hasn't been that way in so long...and I'm done. Done.
      Julia: Sarah, you can't. You can't. Because if you leave, and we all have to walk in there and face him again and he sees that you're gone he's going to think, I am winning. He's going to think, I am right and they are wrong and they don't have the guts to face up to me. And then we're...and then it's over.
      Sarah: I'm sorry. I tried.
      Julia: That is not good enough! Sarah, if you leave, that is so much worse than if you had never come here to begin with.

    • Bailey: Forget it, Julia! You're the one I feel sorry for! What are you gonna do, drop out of school so you can get pregnant again?

    • Charlie: God, Bailey...
      Bailey: What? Now you want to give me a lecture on screwing up? Talk about hearing it from the master!

    • Claudia: (to Bailey) If you don't go and get help, then I don't want to see you. You can't see me and you can't see Owen and you can't come over to the house, and I'm not gonna come and see you, and I'm not gonna call you, and... I'm not even going to think about you.

    • Joe: I'm sorry, Claudia. I didn't know you were standing there.
      Claudia: It's OK. I should know, right? Who my father really was...
      Joe: That wasn't who he was. It was just a small part of him.
      Claudia: It isn't small. It's everything. He was an alcoholic.
      Joe: He stopped drinking long before you were even born, Claudia.
      Claudia: But changes everything.
      Joe: How?
      Claudia: Because I thought I knew him!
      Joe: You did, sweetie! Everything you remember about your father is still true. He wasn't perfect, Claudia. He made mistakes, he had faults... it didn't make him any less of a person. Just made him human.

    • Claudia: (when her siblings ask her to call Bailey and lie about Owen being hurt): You don't think that's the most horrible thing you could do to a person? You're seriously OK with this?
      Julia: I know it will get him over here, Claud, so yeah I am.
      Claudia: Well, I don't care. I still think it's wrong and if you think it's such a great idea, you call him.
      Julia: It won't make any sense coming from Sarah...or me, or Charlie.
      Charlie: If it's you, Claud...if you call him and say that you need his help and you don't know what to do, he'll believe you. And he'll come.
      Julia: He's in trouble. Claudia...I mean, don't you want him to get better? Aren't you willing to do whatever it takes to help him? I am.

    • Claudia: What made him stop drinking? I want to know.
      Joe: Your mother said she would leave him.

    • Claudia (crying on phone): Bay! Bay... it's Owen, he... I wasn't looking, and he, he fell down the stairs and hit his head, hard!.... And I don't know... he's breathing, but he's not moving, Bailey, and I... and I don't know what to do! And you gotta... you gotta... OK... OK, but hurry! (hangs up, looks at Charlie) Shame on you.

    • Grace: Family dinners, he can get out of. He can say 'Gee, I forgot,' or 'I couldn't make it'. You gotta come up with something better. Something he can't say no to.

    • Julia: You can't leave, Sarah! You know what will happen if you do? He'll think, 'I'm winning. I'm winning, and they don't have the guts to stand up to me.' And then it's over.
      Sarah: I'm sorry. I tried.
      Julia: That is not good enough!

    • Charlie: You want me to cut you off financially? It's done!
      Bailey: Fine! Who cares? I don't need your money! I can go get a job, and I already have a place to live. All I need is for you to get the hell out of my way.

  • NOTES (0)