Season 1 Episode 8

Jake Gets a Job

Aired Saturday 9:00 PM Nov 09, 1996 on ABC

Episode Recap

Jake goes to Epicenter, looking for a glue gun Leo left behind after his painting gig, but ends up winning over David with his computer golf skills instead. Isabel is surprised to see the two men getting along so well, as is Leo when she mentions the incident to him. Isabel reassures Leo that David is beginning to like him as well, although Leo has his doubts. Leo talks to Jake about his encounter, alternately positing himself as authority figure and supportive brother, but Jake just shuts him out. It's clear, though, that Jake is not entirely detached from Leo's investment in this situation. David suggests hiring Jake for an assistant aka "gopher" position, which thrills Izzy, but then digs his own grave with various comments on Jake's "offbeat" family. When Jen excitedly reminds Izzy that her birthday is on the 21st, Izzy suggests calling Karen, but Jen quickly stops her, her excitement gone, suggesting that maybe she shouldn't have a big family party but just celebrate in her own way instead. Leo expresses concern to Isabel that Jake will screw up at the new job, since Jake doesn't respect his own older brother's authority. Leo finds Jake at a game arcade, and tries to discourage him from taking the job, but Jake simply continues to shut him out. Back at the Roth's, Rhonda and Hal are at odds about how Jake should go about his interview, and they don't notice him leave without paying any attention to them. Jake has his doubts after seeing a perfectly groomed candidate winning the manager over, but David sweet-talks him in with the new golf game upgrade. David is clearly won over by Jake's skills, and Jake gives him a valuable tip that improves David's scores immediately. When Jake tells Leo that he got the job, and Leo's response is less than enthusiastic, Jake disgustedly reassures Leo that he won't make him look bad. Izzy is surprised to hear that Jake is driving the family's Explorer, since even she's not allowed to drive it not being on the policy. She witnesses David asking the office manager (who still rues about not hiring the other candidate) to put Jake on the policy. Sparks fly when Jake runs into Jen, and helps her zip up her ill-fitting dress. It's actually Izzy's dress and they end up breaking the zipper. Izzy finds Jake and some friends making a mess during an "impromptu get-together" in David's office. She kicks them out nicely, trying to be sensitive to Jake's plight, but it's clear that she's furious. Leo mentions to Jake hearing that he was at the office after-hours, but Jake tells him to stop checking up on him, that it was just him and some friends, and hitting him with the dig that, "the people there don't think I'm a stupid screw-up." Izzy is surprised that Leo didn't say anything more to him, but Leo reminds her that Jake has just pretty much lost his whole family. When Izzy suggests they go to dinner to get closer, Leo dismisses it as just not the way they do things, but Izzy points out that the way they do things now isn't working. Jake runs into Eve and Jen at the Lukens's, where they are pondering the psychology of adolescent angst. Eve is taken by Jake's "compassionate" interpretation of troubled teens acting out for their parents' attention. Jake brings his friend Bailey to his and Leo's "dinner" at a diner, underscoring how unusual this is for their brotherly relationship. The dinner doesn't go well, as Jake gets defensive about actually enjoying his new job and being invited to Jen's surprise party. Leo warns him to be careful about his position with the family, but Jake just walks out. At Jen's party, Leo comments that Jake and Bailey "crashed" the party. Jake finds Jen sitting by herself in the Explorer, sad that her 21st birthday is marking the end of her childhood. She implores him to take her somewhere, and they end up at the arcade where Jen lives it up and is re-invigorated. Back in the car, she compliments Jake on being "a good guy", and how much they all like him, but then dashes his hopes by confiding that she wished he was her brother. Crushed, Jake starts the car to leave, and ends up crashing the Explorer into another car.

Jake goes to Leo and asks him to explain what happened to David for him, but David will have none of this passing off responsibility stuff. Jake turns to walk out of the situation, but when David stops him, asking him to just deal with something for once, Jake accuses Leo of being jealous that the Lukens family likes Jake more than him. Jake faces the music with David, who is clearly disappointed. Jake thinks it's all over, but David gives him a second chance. Leo thanks David for forgiving Jake, and David comments that he needs a father. Leo takes offense at this suggestion that he's not looking out for his brother properly, but David tries to explain, and reassures him that he is not Jake's father. Back at the Roth house, Leo explains to Jake that he just wants them to be a family, and that the Lukens family is so much more loving and normal in comparison to theirs. Leo apologizes to Jake, who tells him that he doesn't need to try so hard, that he just needs Leo to be his brother, and Leo agrees. Leo goes to leave, but Jake asks him to stay, and the two share their meal as brothers.
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