Perfect Strangers Episode Guide

EPISODE 126 - The Gazebo

First Air Date: November 1, 1991
Filming Date: October 11, 1991
Nielsen Rating: 10.6 HH

Produced by: Alan Plotkin
Created by: Dale McRaven
Written by: Terry Hart
Directed by: Judy Pioli

Cast:
Bronson Pinchot: Balki Bartokomous
Mark Linn-Baker: Larry Appleton
Rebeca Arthur: Mary Anne Spencer
Melanie Wilson: Jennifer Appleton

Dimitri Appearances: Dimitri is not seen in this episode.

Balki-isms: There are no Balki-isms in this episode.

Donít be ridiculous: Not said in this episode.

Other catchphrases used in this episode:
"Oh, right!"

Other running jokes used in this episode:
They do a slight variation of the "How many . . . ?" routine as Stan and Ollie

Interesting facts:
gazebograb02.jpg (46379 bytes)-
Bronson and Mark were on hand to host TGIF the night this episode aired, singing their way through introductions for the shows Family Matters, Step by Step, Baby Talk and of course their own show.  You can now watch these spots on our YouTube Channel page.
- Itís funny when Mary Anne comments that Larry and Balki remind her of Laverne and Shirley, since many people had drawn that comparison since the showís debut.  And it only make sense, seeing that executive producers Tom Miller and Bob Boyett, not to mention show creator Dale McRaven, all worked on that series previously.  And letís not forget that director Judy Pioli not only wrote for Laverne and Shirley but also appeared on the show as Laverneís nemesis, Terry Buttafuco.
- This is the second time the series did a tribute to a Perfect Strangers predecessor, and one which Bronson and Mark had been compared to from the beginning.  They had previously done a Honeymooners episode; season sixís I Saw This on TV . . . Bronson and Mark had often been called the "Ed Norton and Ralph Kramden of the 80's.  They were equally compared to the classic comedy team of Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, who starred in both silent and sound films in the late twenties through the thirties and even mid-forties (with one last co-starring feature in 1951).  Much beloved, Laurel and Hardy still stand as one of the greatest comedy teams of all time.  For more information on them, visit their official website.
- Once again Bronson really impressed audiences with his spot-on impersonation of Stan Laurel (even though Markís gazebograb03.jpg (51516 bytes) impersonation of Oliver Hardy was also right on the money!)  This very likely led to Bronson being cast in the role of Stan Laurelís nephew in The All New Adventures of Laurel and Hardy in For Love or Mummy.  Conceived as a new version of Laurel and Hardy, the film was not successful and no further entries to the series were made.
- This is the second time that unique footage is featured over the end credits. In this case, a bit of funny business between "Stan and Ollie" regarding their hats is shown.


Synopsis:
The episode begins in the kitchen of the house where Mary Anne is leaning against the counter with a coffee cup in her hand, looking out the window at the back yard.  Jennifer enters the kitchen and asks, "Have Balki and Larry started building the gazebo?"  "Yes, but itís early in the process," Mary Anne reports, "No oneís been hurt yet."  Jennifer shakes her head and sighs, "Sometimes I wonder why they even try these big projects on their own."  Outside in the yard, Larry and Balki are standing on a cleared path walkway leading to the bottom portion of what will be a gazebo.  "Balki, by this time tomorrow weíll be sitting in our new gazebo sipping lemonade," Larry smiles, then he motions to a long board propped up against the base and asks, "Can you figure out where this board goes?"  "Cousin, youíve said that about every single piece of wood in this kit," Balki notes, "Now why we didnít hire professionals to assemble it the way the man at the hardware store said we should?"

"And do you know why he wanted us to hire professionals, Balki?" Larry asks.  "Because he figured we didnít have a prayer of assembling it ourselves after he saw you knock over the paint can pyramid?" Balki guesses.  "No," Larry replies, "No.  He wanted us to pay for professional help we donít need.  Come on.  Letís get to work."  Balki turns and picks up the long board leaning against the gazebo base and lifts it onto his shoulder.  As he starts to turn, Larry leans down to pick up a rubber mallet from the tool box at his feet.  The board on Balkiís shoulder swings over Larryís head, barely missing him.  Larry stands up and holds up the mallet as Balki swings back around.  This time the board hits Larry right in the face.  Balki sets the board down on its end and looks at Larry with concern.  Angrily, Larry starts hitting the board with the mallet, trying to hit Balkiís fingers.  Balki throws the board at Larry and Larry catches it, throwing it back at Balki.  Inside the house, Jennifer and Mary Anne watch this through the window.

"Donít they remind you of someone?" Jennifer asks.  "I know who youíre thinking of," Mary Anne answers, "Laverne and Shirley!"  "Laurel and Hardy," Jennifer corrects.  "Oh, right!" Mary Anne realizes.  The girls continue to watch as Larry and Balki argue.  "I . . . Iím not gonna hit you," Larry insists, "Just give me the board."  "Oh, youíre not gonna hit me?" Balki says skeptically.  "Give . . . give me the board!" Larry insists.  Balki whimpers as the scene slowly oil dissolves into an old black-and-white movie with Balki and Larry as versions of Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, complete with bowler hats, gloves and work overalls.  The song, "The Dance of the Cuckoos," is playing in the background.  Balki, as Stan Laurel, slowly looks around the board, crying and whimpering as he points to the tool box.  Larry, as Oliver Hardy, drops the mallet back into the tool box.  "Give me that before someone gets hurt," Olllie demands.  "Sorry, Ollie, I didnít know you were standing there," Stan offers.  "Well, I was!" Olllie states emphatically.  Ollie grabs the board away from Stan and throws it aside then brushes off his hands.

"Now, you pour the concrete for the walkway.  Iíll work on the gazebo," Ollie orders.  "Yes, but I was going to take the . . . " Stan begins, but Ollie grabs him and shoves him over toward the trough where the concrete is mixed.  Stan scratches his head as Ollie nods at the camera.  As Ollie moves a plank of wood in the background, Stan uses a hoe to try to stir the concrete, pushing it through the thick mixture awkwardly.  Ollie places the plank across two boxes, completely a makeshift walkway up onto the gazebo base.  Stan continues to mix the concrete in his odd fashion as Ollie moves the tool box to one side, then walks around to try out the walkway.  As Stan starts to shovel concrete into his bucket, Ollie pauses on the plank heís just placed and bounces on it, testing its sturdiness.  Showing his satisfaction with a nod, Ollie walks back down to get one of the lattice panels for the gazebo.

Stan struggles to pick up the bucket of concrete and finally carries it over to the walkway.  Seeing the plank in his way, Stan picks it up and moves it aside, just as Ollie walks up the first plank holding the latticed panel in front of him so he canít see where heís going.  Ollie falls off the box and lands on the ground, his head going through the lattice panel.  Stan starts to cry, knowing Ollie will be mad, and he quickly replaces the plank between the box and the gazebo base . . . right above Ollieís head!  When Ollie tries to stand up, he hits his head on the bottom of the plank, then gives the camera a "slow burn" look.  Ollie gets up and slowly advances on Stan, who side steps away from Ollie until he is blocked by the bucket.  "Why did you do that?" Ollie asks.  "Why did I do what?" Stan asks.  "Why did you remove the board so I would fall on my face?" Ollie asks.

"Well, you see, you told me take the concrete and pour it over there in the walkway," Stan explains in a befuddled manner, "And so I . . . and then . . . when I got there the board was in the way and the . . . the only way that I . . . and then I had to . . . "  Stan breaks down crying, sobbing, "I didnít know you were gonna . . . "  Ollie gives the camera a look of exasperation as Stan stops crying suddenly and offers, "If I had it to do over again, you know what Iíd do?  Iíd . . . Iíd take, um . . . "  Stan loses his train of thought and shrugs.  "Never mind," Ollie sighs, then he shoves Stan aside and warns, "Just be more careful!"  "Well, all right," Stan sighs.  Ollie turns to walk away and steps on the hoe, causing the handle to fly up and hit him in the face.  "Oh ho ho ho ho!" Ollie cries in pain as Stan winces.  Ollie turns to look at Stan, who is at a loss as to how to react.

The scene irises out and then back in to a while later.  Ollie picks up another latticed panel and looks at it while Stan uses a shovel to mix the trough of concrete, which is located underneath the second plank in the makeshift walkway.  In his attempt to reach the concrete better, Stan straddles the board and sits upon it, then pretends he is rowing a boat, using the shovel as an oar.  Ollie heads for the makeshift walkway with the latticed panel in front of his face again.  Stan gets off the plank and sets the shovel aside, then takes the plank and moves it away.  Once again Ollie falls off the box and plows head first through the latticed panel, this time also landing in the trough of wet concrete.  Slowly Ollie climbs out of the trough as Stan awaits retribution.  When Ollie is standing, Stan points at the concrete on his overalls and tries to stifle a laugh.  Stan uses one finger to scrape a tiny bit of the concrete off Ollieís overalls as Ollie gives the camera a look.

Stan then pulls Ollieís tie free from the overalls and starts to use that to wipe away the concrete.  Ollie finally shoos Stan away.  Stan then runs to get a garden hose which is lying on the ground and brings it over.  The hose gets hung up at one point and pulls Stan back, but he manages to pull it free.  Without Ollie expecting it, Stan begins to hose down Ollieís overalls, thoroughly soaking them as he washes off the concrete.  Ollie remains still as Stan continues to spray him and spray him, even dousing Ollieís bowler hat and underarms.  Finished, Stan looks satisfied with a job well done.  Ollie slowly walks over to the gazebo base and picks up an empty bucket, which he then uses to scoop up a bunch of wet concrete from the trough.  Ollie looks at Stan, then glances around before handing Stan the bucket to hold.  Ollie then picks up a small piece of wood which he uses to prop open the top of Stanís overalls.

Ollie takes the bucket back and proceeds to pour the wet cement down the front of Stanís overalls, taking his time.  At one point he stops and Stan looks sad, but then Stan looks down into his overalls and then into the bucket.  Realizing there is still more cement, Ollie pours the rest of it down Stanís overalls, Ollie then pulls the stick out and drops it down inside as well, patting the front of Stanís overalls with satisfaction.  Stan shakes the wet concrete which has oozed down his overalls out of the bottoms of his pants legs.  When Ollie turns around and bends over to set the bucket down, Stan sprays Ollieís behind with the water hose.  Ollie stares at the camera as this is happening.  Ollie turns around and Stan continues to spray him until Ollie knocks the hose out of his hands and then chases a slipping and falling Stan off screen as the scene fades to black.

Act two begins back in the present day with Mary Anne and Jennifer sitting at the kitchen counter drinking their coffee.  "Jennifer, we have to work a flight later today," Mary Anne notes, "Do you think itís safe to leave them here alone?"  "The question is is it safe for us to stay here with them?" Jennifer corrects.  They look out the window where Balki and Larry are standing next to the gazebo, which has been mostly completed except for the walk and the steps.  The scene oil dissolves back into black and white and Balki and Larry are once again Stan and Ollie.  "Itís coming along quite nicely," Ollie observes.  "Well, it certainly is," Stan agrees.  "You pour the concrete for the path," Ollie instructs, "Iíll attend to more important matters."  "Well, all right," Stan nods.  Ollie walks away and Stan walks over to the trough of wet concrete, reaching down to pick up his shovel.  The shovel is set so that the handle is in the concrete, so when Stan tries to shovel some concrete he only finds a skinny end to the tool.

Stan doesnít see the shovel on the other end, and so he starts searching for it, thinking itís fallen off into the concrete.  He dips his hand into the wet mixture and feels around for the shovel, coming up instead with a womanís shoe.  He reacts to the shoe then drops it to one side, feeling through the concrete again as he calls, "Oh Miss?"  Unable to find his shovel end, Stan starts to cry.  He gets to his feet and then sees the shovel on the other end of the handle.  Ollie is on the other side of the yard, getting the garden hose.  Stan shovels some of the wet concrete into his bucket then carries the bucket over to the pathway which has been sectioned off.  Stan is about to pour the concrete into the form when Ollie, who is unwinding the garden hose, backs into him.  Stan slips and the concrete pours out onto the grass instead of in the walkway.  "Now look what youíve done," Ollie scolds, "How could you be so clumsy?"  "Well, I went to school to study for it," Stan answers.  "Went to school to study for it," Ollie scoffs.  "I was first in me class," Stan says proudly, then asks, "Well, how . . . how did you learn how to be so clumsy?"

"Well, I certainly didnít have to go to school for it," Ollie insists.  "Well, you bumped into me," Stan points out.  "I didnít bump into you," Ollie corrects, "You were standing where I was walking."  "Yes, but I was trying to . . . " Stan starts to explain.  "You were standing where I was walking," Ollie repeats.  Stan tries to come up with a response to this, stuttering, "Yes, but I . . . Iím sorry."  "Well, donít let it happen again," Ollie states.  "All right," Stan sighs.  "Now clean up this mess," Ollie orders.  "Yes, but . . . but I was trying to . . . " Stan mutters, but Ollie walks back to the hose.  Stan walks over and gets his shovel, showing a moment of frustration.  Stan walks over to where he spilled the concrete on the grass and sets his bucket back a ways.  He scoops up a shovel full of the wet concrete, accidentally hooking the bucket onto the other end of the shovel.  When he turns to drop the concrete into the bucket, it is gone.

Stan doesnít realize itís behind him on the end of his shovel.  He looks confused, then turns, still looking for the bucket.  Ollie stops what heís doing to watch Stan going in circles, then walks over to him.  "I thought I told you to clean up this mess," Ollie says.  "Well, I was trying to clean it up but I lost me bucket . . . someone must have stolen me bucket," Stan sobs, then continues to whine as Ollie gives the camera a look of exasperation, "And it was me favorite bucket, me bucket is lost and I canít find it anywhere . . . "  As Stan turns again, Ollie takes the bucket off the handle and says, "Hereís your bucket."  "Well, I donít think thatís me bucket," Stan argues as Ollie glares at the camera again, "Me bucket was a bit larger.  And it . . . it didnít . . . you see this little dent down here?  It didnít have that little dent.  And it had more of a curve to it."  Ollie shoves the bucket into Stanís hands in frustration.  "Now stop fooling around and get back to work," Ollie orders.  "Yes, but my bucket . . . " Stan begins.  "Just get back to work," Ollie insists, and he turns Stan around and shoves him.  Ollie turns and steps on the hoe again, the handle flying up and hitting him in the face again.  "Oh ho ho ho!" Ollie cries in pain.  He turns to look at Stan, who smiles and waves at him.

The scene irises out and then back in again to a bit later.  "Weíll finish the walk later," Ollie says.  "Well, all right," Stan agrees.  "I have to get the blueprints.  You take the measurements for the steps," Ollie orders, handing Stan a pad and pencil.  "Yes, but I want to go and . . . " Stan begins.  "You take the measurements for the steps," Ollie repeats.  Stan takes the pencil and pad as Ollie gives him a slight shove.  Stan motions as if he is going to stab Ollie with the pencil, but refrains, then cringes when Ollie really gives him a shove.  Stan walks over to the gazebo and throws down the pencil and paper, then brushes off his hands and reaches into the toolbox for a retractable tape measure.  He pulls the tape measure out across the base to measure the entrance of the gazebo, then reaches to pick up the pencil.  The tape measure slides closed.  Stan sets the pencil down and again pulls the tape measure across the opening, trying to push it down so it will stay.  When he lets go it again slides back and flips off the edge.

Stan picks up the tape measure and tries again as Ollie is looking at the blueprints on the other side of the yard.  This time Stan lets go and the tape measure pulls shut, then drops off the gazebo onto his foot.  Stan cringes in pain, then reaches down to retrieve the tape measure.  Ollie finally sees that Stan is having trouble.  This time when Stan opens the tape measure, he holds it down and reaches for a nail and the mallet with the intention of nailing the tape measure in place.  Ollie walks up behind Stan just as Stan swings the mallet back and the mallet hits Ollie on the head.  "Oh!" Ollie cries in pain, then he pulls Stan away from the gazebo and takes the mallet from him.  He takes off Stanís hat and shoves it into Stanís arms, them whacks Stan on the head with the mallet.  Stan makes his sad face as Ollie takes the hat from Stanís hands and replaces it on Stanís head.

When Ollie turns to set the mallet down, Stan gives him a swift kick in the rear.  Ollie turns and give Stan a shove.  Stan gives Ollie a huge shove which knocks him flat on his back on the floor of the gazebo.  Ollie lays on his back with his legs kicking for a moment, then rights himself.  He grabs the tape measure from Stan and opens it for him, handing it to Stan before he turns to measure the entrance with his hands.  When Ollie has his back turned, Stan uses the tape measure to measure his rear, laughing at the size of it.  Ollie holds up his hands and turns to Stan, who measures the distance between his hands.  "Thank you," Stan nods.  "Youíre welcome," Ollie offers.  Ollie then grabs Stan and throws him across the floor of the gazebo.  Ollie turns to walk away and again steps on the hoe, the handle flying up and hitting him in the face.  "Oh ho ho ho ho!" Ollie cries in pain, then he looks to Stan, who shrugs.

The scene irises in and out again to still later. The gazebo, steps and walk are completed.  "If you ask me we did a good job," Ollie states, "Everything came out just as we planned."  "Well, it certainly did," Stan agrees, "Maybe we should consider opening a gazebo building business."  "A gazebo building business," Ollie repeats.  "Yes," Stan nods.  "Thatís an excellent idea," Ollie notes.  "Thank you," Stan smiles.  "Now . . . letís put up our sign," Ollie suggests as he picks up a small sign which reads, "Welcome," and hands it to Stan.  "You know, I was thinking that we should glue the sign on," Stan says as Ollie picks up a hammer and nail.  "Weíll hammer it in," Ollie says, "That way it will stay up."  "Yes, but I was thinking that if we . . . " Stan begins.  "Oh, so you were thinking, were you?" Ollie asks.  "Yes," Stan confirms. "Tell me . . . how many gazebos have you built?" Ollie asks, "How many?"  "Well . . . "

"How many?"  "Well, I . . . "  "How many gazebos?  How many gazebos have you built?"  "Well, counting this one . . . one," Stan finally answers.  "One," Ollie says.  "Yes."  "One," Ollie repeats, "Then weíll do it my way."  "Yes, but I . . . " Stan tries to protest, but Ollie takes the sign from him and walks up a step to hammer it to the front of the gazebo.  He hits it three times, then looks back to Stan before hitting one last time.  The entire gazebo fall apart, scattering around the lawn.  All thatís left standing is the one board with the "Welcome" sign on it.  Stan removes his hat and scratches his head, then replaces his hat.  Stan then leans into Ollie to reach around him and straighten the sign on the post.  "There . . . thatís better," Stan offers.  Ollie eyes the hammer he is still holding, then looks at the camera for a moment.

The scene oil dissolves back to the present day.  Larry and Balki are sitting on a bench beside the newly created walkway looking at their completed gazebo.  The toolbox and bucket are sitting in front of them.  "Well, Balki, Iím exhausted," Larry says, "But the gazebo looks pretty darn good."  "Yes it does, Cousin," Balki agrees.  Mary Anne and Jennifer walk outside along the new path wearing their stewardess uniforms.  "The gazebo looks great!" Mary Anne gasps.  "Itís beautiful!" Jennifer adds.  "Thank you," Larry and Balki both reply.  "Itís been standing for several hours now," Jennifer remarks.  "Yes, it has," Larry confirms, "And itís going to be around for a long, long time.  It was built by two men who knew what they were doing."  "Cousin, I thought we built it," Balki says.  "And I love the new concrete walkway," Mary Anne comments, "It looks so professional."  "Larry, I have to admit I . . . I didnít think you could do it," Jennifer adds.  "Now why would you think that?" Larry asks.  "Well, I . . . I donít know," Jennifer sighs, "Past performance, I guess."  "Well, this is just an example of what talented craftsmen can do when we set our minds to it," Larry offers.

"Well, itís getting late, Jennifer," Mary Anne points out, "Weíd better get to the airport or weíll miss our flight."  Mary Anne and Jennifer cross behind the bench to kiss Balki and Larry goodbye.  "Okay, great job, guys," Jennifer says, and she kisses Larry and says, "See you later."  "Bye bye," Larry replies.  Mary Anne leans over Balkiís shoulder each time Balki turns his head the wrong way, so she keeps missing his face to kiss him.  Finally she grabs his neck and pulls his head back to give him a kiss.  Jennifer is still kissing Larry so Mary Anne pulls her away, saying, "Oh now come on, weíre gonna be late."  The girls head back to the house.  "Well, they certainly seemed impressed," Larry notes.  "Yes, they certainly did," Balki agrees, "Lucky thing for us they didnít ask us to help them with their suitcases."  "Yes, very lucky," Larry agrees, then he sighs, "Well, letís see, uh . . . they said theyíre working the Hong Kong flight."  "Right, right, um . . . " Balki thinks.

"That means theyíll be back in . . . "  "Four days," they say together.  "Yeah well, four days ought to be enough time to break out of this concrete," Balki states as he and Larry remove the items in front of them to reveal their feet are completely encased in the concrete of the walkway.  "Itís amazing how fast concrete dries," Larry remarks.  "Well, it said, uh . . . quick drying cement but who knew?" Balki adds.  They both stand up.  "Can you reach the sledgehammer?" Larry asks, pointing to one of several tools still lying on the lawn on the other side of the walk.  "Well, Iíll give it a go," Balki says, and he leans forward as the song "Dance of the Cuckoos" starts to play again.  Balki reaches out for the sledgehammer but it is just out of his reach, so Larry pulls him back up again.  "Let me try," Larry offers, and he leans forward to try to grab it, but itís even further away for him.  "Better yet, the hoe . . . the hoe," Balki suggests, and he starts to lean toward the hoe when the episode ends.

Over the end credits, additional footage of Larry and Balki as Ollie and Stan is included.  They are both sitting on the ground with their hats in their hands.  Ollie goes to put his hat on but Stan puts his hat on Ollieís head first so Ollie ends up putting his hat on top of that.  Stan laughs at the sight of the two hats sitting on Ollieís head.  Ollie removes the hats from his head and looks at them, then pushes Stanís hat back to him.  They place the hats on their heads then look at each other and nod.

Continue on to the next episode . . .