The Wonder Years

Season 4 Episode 7

The Ties That Bind

Aired Unknown Nov 14, 1990 on ABC
out of 10
User Rating
43 votes

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Episode Summary

The Ties That Bind
When the family needs money, Jack demands a raise and gets it. But his new position means traveling across the country and it looks like he might miss Thanksgiving.

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    Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


    • TRIVIA (3)

      • The old family photos in the beginning of this episode has Dan Lauria, and Alley Mills (Jack and Norma Arnold) airbrushed in the photographs.

      • Norma answers the rotary dial telephone in the living room. If you look closely, the receiver has a modular connector. They didn't have this in 1970. Modular connectors were introduced in 1976 on telephones.

      • When the family is in the kitchen and Norma is admiring her new stove, the advertisement on the back page of the Los Angeles Free Press newspaper Karen is holding reads, "THE STEVE MILLER _AN_ SAILS INTO THE WHISKY _ _O-_O," and, to the right, it says "2-6." Some characters (represented by underscores) are blacked out, and the paper should read, "THE STEVE MILLER BAND SAILS INTO THE WHISKY A GO-GO." The Steve Miller Band did play at the Whisky a Go-Go in West Hollywood, California, on October 2-6, 1968 - two years before this episode takes place.

    • QUOTES (3)

      • Narrator: Before my parents were Mom and Dad... they were Norma and Jack. Or, so the story goes. Back then, they didn't have much. So they got by on what they had - each other. Somewhere along the way, though... hearts and flowers gave way to other things. Guess it kinda took 'em by surprise. So, like any couple of their generation... they did what they had to do - they became... parents. Providers.

      • Kevin: Things are weird around here. You know?
        Narrator: And for a moment... I knew I wasn't alone. Wayne actually understood.
        Wayne: You know... you've got a big glob of toothpaste right there on your nose.
        Narrator: Still, maybe I was over-reacting. (Norma puts the tablecloth on the table, then pulls it off.) Or maybe not. Thanksgiving day. We hauled out all the old traditions. The pageantry... the celebrations. The day of family. And of children. And through it all, Mom was a cooking machine. A whirling dervish of domesticity. And as much as she had come to love that new stove of hers... I had come to hate it. And so, the time had arrived to give thanks for our many blessings. To consume the fruits of our bountiful harvest. From the depths of Mom's stove came a tidal wave of holiday fare. A symphony of corn and carrots. A blitzkrieg of potatoes and yams. And to top it all off... a turkey the size of a Buick.
        Norma: Well - that's everything.
        It was enough to feed a small army.

      • Narrator: We sat there... while Mom kept talking, and folding her napkin.
        Norma: Threw in just a little bit of coconut just before I baked it.
        Narrator: It was horrible. Then it got even worse. Her silence was like a cry for help. She was out there on a limb. So I figured I'd come to the rescue.
        Kevin: Mom? Who's gonna carve?
        Norma: I don't know... (Exits.)
        Wayne: Nice goin', butthead!
        (Kevin overhears Norma on the phone.)
        Norma: Oh, he hasn't?.... Oh, no, no. That's alright. Could you just leave a message for him when he gets in? Tell him that Norma called him... Yes. Thank you.
        Narrator: When you're fourteen, you know a lot of things. How to throw a spiral... how to fix a bike. But standing there... I knew I couldn't fix what was wrong.

    • NOTES (2)

    • ALLUSIONS (1)