Strangers Episode Guide
16 - The Rent Strike
First Air Date:
December 10, 1986
Nielsen Rating: 16.1 HH
Created by: Dale McRaven
Written by: Mark Fink
Directed by: Joel Zwick
Bronson Pinchot: Balki Bartokomous
Mark Linn-Baker: Larry Appleton
Ernie Sabella: Mr. Donald Twinkacetti
Lise Cutter: Susan Campbell
Melanie Wilson: Jennifer Lyons
Rebeca Arthur: Mary Anne
Bob Larkin: Max
Mary Gillis: Mrs. Schleggelmilch
Appearances: Dimitri is seen clearly when the camera focuses on him at
the beginning of the second act, sitting on the coffee table with earmuffs on.
Dimitri can also be seen sitting on the couch next to Balki at the end of the
"You reek all the time!" (after Jennifer comments that Larry reeks of
"So they protest by they get together and they dip his teabags in the
filthy, dirty harbor water . . . "
"What do you think, I just fell off the turnip truck? Well, I
didnít! I jumped off with my own two feet!"
ridiculous: Said once.
used in this episode:
"Where do I come up with them?"
"Question . . . . "
"I donít think so."
Other running jokes
used in this episode:
Larry insists Balki do something which Balki knows will be bad but ends up doing
anyway because Larry is so insistent
Larry sniffs at the air
Larry shrugs off a question from Balki with a simple and wrong answer just so he
doesnít have to explain something
Balki sits among the ashes (first time)
Mrs. Schlegelmilch is seen for the first (and last) time.
- Balki seeing himself in the plate is a reference to popular television
commercials for Joy dishwashing liquid which had aired for years in which
housewives were astonished to see themselves in the shine of their clean dishes.
- Susan appears in this episode for the last time
in the series and also for the first time with Jennifer and Mary Anne also in
the same episode. Lise Cutter's name even appears in the credits before
the show as it did in the first six episodes. No explanation was ever
given for her departure from the series, but it's likely the inclusion of
Jennifer and Mary Anne as
permanent girlfriends for the guys made the role of a female friend seem
unnecessary, which is a real shame since Susan could have grown into a very
interesting character given the chance.
- Mrs. Schlegelmilch appears in this episode for
the first and only time, although her name would be mentioned throughout the
series on various occasions. It's a shame Mary Gillis was never to appear
again as the cantankerous but lovable neighbor, but she went on to appear in Full
House and countless television shows, including Mr. Belvedere, Married
With Children, the Golden Girls, The Wonder Years, Sabrina the Teenage Witch,
Becker, Scrubs and Everybody Loves Raymond.
This is the only time we ever see any other part of the first apartment building
apart from the exterior shots and Larry and Balki's apartment.
- Long-time actor Bob Larkin, who played Max in
this episode, was also a regular on the series Boy Meets World, playing Janitor
Bud. He also made numerous appearances in other series, including Alf,
Mama's Family, The Wonder Years, ER and most recently on Zoey 101.
- Thereís an odd reverse shot used in the middle of the tenantís
meeting . . . in the wide shots Mrs. Schleggelmilch is sitting to the right of
Balki but in the close up where she says "Dream on, the manís a
rodent," she is on the left. The film has been reversed on purpose,
probably to create a more aesthetic shot and edit because Mrs. Schleggelmilch
was facing Larry and not Susan, when she said this line. Itís noticeable
because Balkiís hair is parted on the wrong side.
- As Larry prepares to break up the wooden chair
for firewood you can clearly see the large shadow of one of the cameras move
across the upholstered chair in the foreground as the camera moves into a new
position to the left. (Spotted by Cousin Quidget)
- When Larry and Balki enter the Ritz to
complain to Mr. Twinkacetti, Larry still has some of the coffee on his upper
lip. But when they walk into the store, it's gone. Originally scenes
were filmed in which Balki swiped the coffee mustache off, which led to Bronson
and Mark getting the giggles.
- When Mr. Twinkacetti arrives at the store
only moments after everyone has hidden, he complains because Balki and Larry
left the lights on. But he doesn't seem at all concerned that the front
door was left unlocked!
The episode begins one morning in the apartment as Balki is drying dishes.
He pauses to look at his reflection in one plate and says "Itís true!
You can see yourself!" Balki smiles at his own reflection.
Larry enters grumpily from the bathroom, his face spotted with pieces of toilet
paper. "Did you make coffee?" Larry growls. He sees the
pot and pours himself a cup. "Make coffee?" Balki asks,
"What do I look like . . . a percolator?" Balki laughs at his
own joke, saying "Where do I come up with them? Of course I made
coffee. I know you can't even speak before you have your coffee.
Question . . . what is that on your face?" "Toilet paper,"
Larry answers. "Why would you put toilet paper on your face?"
Balki asks. "I cut myself shaving, repeatedly," Larry explains,
"There's no hot water. I told Twinkacetti a week ago that the hot
water heater was acting up. I even sent him a letter to complain."
"Did you mention the sink, too?" Balki asks. "What's wrong
with the sink?" Larry asks. "It don't work," Balki reports.
"What?" Larry moans, walking to
the sink to check it, "Well, it's not draining. Try turning on the
garbage disposal." "No, that . . .
that," Balki begins. "Just try turning it . . . just flick the
switch," Larry says. "No, that . . . you don't want that . . .
" Balki argues. "Balki . . . turn on the garbage disposal,"
Larry insists, leaning over the sink. Balki flips the switch and the
garbage disposal starts, spouting water up and into Larry's face. After a
moment Balki turns it off and a drenched Larry looks at him with frustration.
Larry grabs a towel and starts wiping at his face. "Think I found the
problem," he notes. "What is it?" Balki asks.
"It's the garbage disposal," Larry finishes. "Don't worry .
. . I'll fix the sink," Balki says, running to get a tool belt from the
bookshelf. "Balki, you don't have to fix anything," Larry says.
"I don't?" Balki asks, strapping on the belt. "That's
Twinkacetti's responsibility," Larry explains, "Who do you think fixed
the doorbell?" Larry asks. "Me," Balki says.
"What do you mean 'me?'" asks Larry. "I donít mean 'you,'
I mean me!" Balki says, "I fixed the doorbell, I fixed the oven and
now I'm going to go fix the sink."
"Well, Balki, Twinkacetti should have
repaired all those things," Larry explains. "Why should Mr.
Twinkacetti fix our sink?" Balki
asks. "Because it's not our sink," Larry says.
"Oh!" Balki nods, then asks, "Who's sink is it?"
"Twinkacetti is the landlord," Larry says, "He owns the building
and everything in it, including the kitchen sink. Why do you think we pay
rent?" "For the privilege of sleeping indoors without
livestock?" Balki deduces. "Balki, get off the boat and join the
world," Larry urges. The doorbell rings and Balki answers it.
Jennifer is standing there wearing nothing but a towel, which causes Balki to be
stunned as Larry tries to make himself look semi-presentable. "Hi,
guys," she smiles with some embarrassment. "Jennifer . . .
wwowww!" Balki gasps, "I just love those bold American fashions."
"Balki, thatís a towel," Larry explains. "Well, of course
it is. Donít be ridiculous," Balki says, then asks "Is it
reversible?" "Well, I'd really like to stay and chat,"
Jennifer says to Balki, then turns to Larry to explain, "but I need to use
your shower. Mine's broken again."
"Well, help yourself," Larry
motions. Jennifer starts for the bathroom when Larry remembers, "Ah,
we only have cold water. Can
you believe this building?" "I wish we could do something about
this," Jennifer complains. "Well, I guess I just get started on
that garbage disposal," Balki says, starting for the sink. Larry
stops him. "Well, wait a minute . . . we'll get Twinkacetti to fix
it. We could ban together. If enough people want to change something
they can. We stopped the war . . . we got women the vote . . . we came
that close to getting Daylight Savings Time all year round."
"But Cousin, Mr. Twinkacetti is a land owner weíre just lowly common
peasants," Balki sighs. "Balki, this is a democracy," Larry
explains. "Weíre all created equally lowly and common. We'll
get all the tenants together, make out a list of complaints and present them to
Twinkacetti. He has to listen to us." "Count me in,"
Jennifer agrees, "Oh, uh . . . thanks for letting me use your shower."
"Sure," Larry smiles. She heads for the bathroom. "I
need more coffee," Larry comments.
next scene shows the tenants' meeting already in progress in the buildingís
run down recreation room. Everyone is talking at once and Larry stands up,
holding a notepad and pencil, and calls out, "People, people, please!
Let's just keep our heads . . . we've got to approach this in a civilized
manner." Susan raises her hand to speak. "Susan?"
Larry calls on her. "Iíve been trying to get Twinkacetti to fix my
ceiling for three years," she complains. "Dream on! The
manís a rodent!" Mrs. Schleggelmilch growls. "Does anyone
else's living room tilt to the right?" Mary Anne asks. Everyone looks
at her strangely. Balki raises his hand. "Yes, Balki,"
Larry calls on him. Balki stands up and begins, "Not a question, just
a comment. This is wonderful! Here we are, a group of total
strangers brought together by a common cause in the pursuit of justice and the
American way." Balki sits down again. "Well, thank you for
sharing that," Larry comments, "Anything else?"
"Yeah," an older man named Max
says, "Who's gonna give this grievance list to Twinkacetti?"
Balki points to Max and he quickly
says, "Not me!" "We need a leader," Mary Anne points
out. "Cousin Larry can be the leader," Balki suggests.
"Larry, you'd be perfect," Susan agrees. "Yes, Larry, you
reek of leadership," Jennifer smiles. "Really?" Larry
smiles, flattered, "Well, maybe I do . . . reek a little."
"Cousin, whoís kidding who?" Balki asks, "You reek all the
time! All in favor of Cousin Larry say 'bagda!'" "Bagda!"
everyone says, raising their hands. "Well, uh . . . okay," Larry
agrees, getting to his feet, "Uh . . . I'll be the leader. I'll, uh .
. . I'll type up the letter to Twinkacetti and send it to him."
"Isn't he something?" Mary Anne gushes. "We have leases and
Twinkacetti has got to live up to those leases," Larry says, wandering over
by the stairs that lead down to the room. "Yeah," everyone
agrees. Larry doesn't notice Mr. Twinkacetti entering and standing on the
landing right behind him. Balki motions to Twinkacetti, trying to warn
Larry, but Larry says, "In a minute, Balki. In fact, uh, I think that
we'll insist that he fix everything on our list. You know, it is time that
we, uh . . . " Larry leans back against the railing and touches
Larry looks around and then continues,
" . . . placed our orders for Tupperware. Who would like the cold
cuts keeper? Just raise
your hand." Everyone raises their hands and Larry counts them as
Twinkacetti comes down the stairs and stands next to Larry. "One,
two, three, four, five, six . . . oh hello, Mr. Twinkacetti."
"Tupperware, huh?" Twinkacetti asks. "Well, uh . . .
actually we're here because we have, uh . . . " Larry struggles to
get it out and looks to the others for support. Susan motions for him to
go on. " . . . grievances," Larry finishes, showing Twinkacetti
the notepad which Twinkacetti snatches away. "Leaky roof . . . worn
out carpet . . . clogged disposal," Mr. Twinkacetti reads, "You know I
really would like to fix these things." "You would?" Larry
asks with surprise. "Oh, yes!" Twinkacetti insists, "I . .
. I just have a cash flow problem, uh . . . " Mr. Twinkacetti gets
melodramatic. "And just this week . . . both grandmothers they, uh .
. . they went in for heart transplants." Balki rushes to Mr.
Twinkacetti's side but Mrs. Schleggelmilch moans, "Oh, please!"
Balki kneels down next to Mr. Twinkacetti,
who is pretending to cry. "Oh, you poor, poor man," Balki sighs,
then looks to
everyone and says, "And we think we have problems." "Balki,
must you be the poster child for the hopelessly naive?" Larry asks,
"The man is lying. He has no grandmothers, he probably sold
them." Balki eyes Twinkacetti in disbelief and asks, "You lied
about your Nanas?" "Look, you ingrates!" Mr. Twinkacetti
shouts, jumping to his feet, "You got no right meeting here like this!
Here's what I think of your list of grievances." He rips the top page
off of Larry's notepad and crumples it up, throwing it down. "Let's
get him!" Max yells. Everyone leaps to their feet and lunges for Mr.
Twinkacetti, but Larry holds them back. "People, people,
please!" Larry cries, and then adds in a surprised voice, "Mrs.
Schleggelmilch! People, you are turning into an ugly mob. Well, not
you Jennifer." Jennifer smiles and goes to sit down. "We .
. . we can still work within the system," Larry says. "Cousin
Larry's right," Balki agrees, "We study something like this in my
to this man," Larry urges, "He knows his history!"
"The Boston Tea Party," Balki relates, "the people are angry with
King George because they pay him tax money but he don't listen to them. So
they protest by they get together and they dip his teabags in the filthy, dirty
harbor water and they don't pay the tax money. What if we protest by get
together and donít pay our rent money? What would you call that, Cousin
Larry?" "Well, Iíd call it a rent strike," Larry says.
"Cousin Larry calls a rent strike!" Balki announces. Everyone
cheers and leaps to their feet, chanting "Rent strike! Rent
strike!" Larry is startled, trying to stop what has started, but it's no
use. "Okay, Appleton," Mr. Twinkacetti barks, "You don't
know who you're dealing with here!" Mr. Twinkacetti storms out.
"This democracy!" Balki exclaims happily, "I like it!"
Balki joins everyone in the celebration, dancing with Mrs. Schleggelmilch as
Larry looks on in worry and the scene fades to black.
Act two begins on a close up of Dimitri
sitting on the coffee table with earmuffs over his ears. The camera pans
back to show
Balki dressed warmly with a hat, scarf and mittens trying to cook eggs in a
frying pan over a candle flame. Larry enters from his bedroom with a
blanket wrapped around him, shivering. "What's going on?" Larry
asks as he sits on the couch next to Balki, "It must be thirty
degrees." "Twenty-five, I checked," Balki confirms.
"Why is the furnace off? Why didn't my electric blanket work?
Why are you cooking over a candle?" Larry asks in rapid succession.
"These are easy questions," Balki responds, "We have no heat or
electricity because Mr. Twinkacetti turned them off. How do you like your
eggs?" Balki eyes the contents of the pan and adds, "Loose, I
hope." "Twinkacetti is playing really dirty," Larry
complains, "Nobody can survive like this. Here, give me that."
Larry drags the candle closer and attempts to warm his hands.
"You know, the trouble with you
Americans is . . . you can't take a little hardship," Balki notes,
"You know, in Mypos we live with it
constantly. Take the great alfalfa famine of '82. Hungry sheep
staring into space . . . hungry men staring back at them. Mama asked me to
help out by selling fig cakes on the street corner. And we only have just
the one road running through my village so . . . I had to walk fifty miles to
find a street corner. And . . . by the time I get there I eat all my fig
cakes. Now thereís true hardship." Balki pulls the candle
back over. "No . . . " Larry contradicts, "no, true
hardship is listening to that story. I'm gonna make some coffee.
That's what I need." "Well, about that coffee . . . Mr.
Twinkacetti also turned off the water so you can't have that," Balki notes.
Larry has taken a can of coffee from the top of the refrigerator and looks
horrified, running to the kitchen tap to test it. "Oh my God,"
Larry gasps, running back into the living room, "I . . . I . . . I have to
have coffee to . . . to cope . . . to exist . . . I need it to, uh . . . to, uh
. . . to . . . w . . . what do you call that when you make up things in your
mind? Think! I can't think!"
"I know," Larry continues,
"I'll go to the coffee shop on the corner." "It's not open
yet," Balki reminds him. "Damn!" Larry cries, "I have
to have coffee. I know . . . I'll make it with ginger ale!"
"Cousin, you can't heat it up," Balki says. "All right,
we'll make a
fire!" Larry cries. "We have no firewood," Balki points
out. "We'll break up the furniture," Larry says, running over to
grab the chair from the desk and lifting it over his head to bring it down.
Balki calmly walks over and takes the chair from Larry as Larry tries to throw
it down. "I don't think so," Balki says, replacing the chair.
"Why not?" Larry asks. "Cousin, you're not going to burn
the furniture to make a cup of coffee," Balki sighs, getting the blanket
from the chair where Larry threw it as Larry hugs the coffee can to his chest.
Balki wraps the blanket around Larry's head and notes, "Cousin . . . I
think youíve reached the end of the pier again. You've got to get a grip
on yourself." Larry goes to sit in the chair and Balki squats down
next to him. "Youíre right, you're right . . . Iíve . . . I've
got to get control . . . Iíve got to keep my wits," Larry agrees, then he
rips the plastic lid off the coffee can and takes a handful of raw coffee which
he stuffs into his mouth. "Cream and sugar?" Balki asks.
Later that morning in the Ritz Discount
Store, Mr. Twinkacetti is on the phone at the counter. "Vinnie?
This is Twinkie. I wanna
put a grand on Chocoholic to win in the fifth. Yeah, of course I'm good
for it." Twinkacetti laughs then hangs up the phone, making a face
which proves he is lying. Larry and Balki enter, looking furious.
Larry has a coat on with a hood pulled tight around his face. Flakes of
coffee still cling to his mouth. Larry rips off the hood and unsnaps the
coat angrily then turns to Balki. "You think you can handle this
without coffee?" Balki asks. "I'm fine," Larry insists,
"Let me at him!" They step to the counter. "Top of
the morning, boys," Mr. Twinkacetti greets them, "Did we all sleep
warm and snugly? Oh, I sure did!" "Mr. Twinkacetti,"
Larry begins, struggling for the words, "In the middle of the night . . .
you turned off our . . . our . . . our . . . the uh, you know . . . "
Larry mimes turning on a faucet and water coming out. "Water,"
Balki helps. "Water!" Larry continues, "And our . . . and
our . . . and our . . . the . . . you know . . . " Larry mimes
electricity. "Electricity," Balki offers.
"Electricity!" Larry says, "And I am . . . I am . . . "
"Larry Appleton," Balki fills in. "Larry Appleton,"
Larry repeats, then cries, "I know that! It's everything else I don't
"Uh, did you boys come in here to
give up?" Mr. Twinkacetti asks. "Oh, hehe . . . hmmm?"
Larry laughs, then looks confused. Balki motions to one side, telling
Larry, "You stand over there." "Yeah," Larry obeys,
stepping aside. Balki confronts Mr. Twinkacetti. "You know in
Mypos we have a word for people like you. You're a chamultsin muckus."
"Gee, take that back,
please!" Mr. Twinkacetti says sarcastically, "What is a rigor morka
turkis?" "It's a by-product of swamp slime," Balki informs
him. "Mr. Twinkacetti, you are playing really dirty," Larry
complains, "but you cannot push us. We . . . we have . . . we have a
. . . " Larry sniffs at the air. Balki looks behind himself.
"Is that fresh coffee I smell?" Larry asks. "Ooh, fresh hot
coffee," Mr. Twinkacetti corrects, "Have some Appleton."
Larry makes a beeline for the coffee pot. "Special of the day,"
Mr. Twinkacetti explains, "Only ten bucks a cup!" "Ten
dollars for a cup of coffee?" Larry cries, "That is outrageous!
Balki, lend me five dollars." Balki walks over to Larry.
"Cousin, get a grip on yourself. Youíre going to pay ten dollars
for a stupid beverage?" "Yes!" Larry insists, "And
donít you ever call it stupid! Here's for half a cup!"
Larry pays Mr. Twinkacetti the five dollars and starts to drink.
"Ohhh, that's good," Larry sighs
blissfully, drinking some more then walking firmly to the counter.
"All right now, Twinkacetti . . .
what was I talking about?" Balki pushes the coffee cup up to make
Larry drink some more. "I noticed you turned off our heat and our
water and . . . " Larry takes another big gulp as Balki finishes for
him, saying, " . . . our electricity." "You think you're
tough?" Larry asks, "You don't know what tough is. This
is tough!" Larry elbows Balki. "I am tough!"
he continues, "In fact, I donít need your stinking coffee!"
Larry crumples the empty cup and throws it to the ground. Mr. Twinkacetti
just stares at them. "You should see him after a second cup,"
Balki warns. "Oooh!" Mr. Twinkacetti says facetiously.
"I can take whatever you can dish out," Larry assures him, "In
fact, we're not giving in until you'd fix everything on our list!"
"You heard that right," Balki confirms, "You better start
respecting Cousin Larry." "Oh, but I do, turnip! I respect
Cousin Larry just as much as I respect . . . Cousin Moe and Cousin Curly," Mr.
Twinkacetti counters, then walks off. Balki turns to Larry with a hurt
expression. "Cousin . . . why you didnít introduce me to the rest
of the family?" Larry stares at Balki in disbelief then finally just
says, "I forgot."
The next morning in the Ritz Discount
store, the place is dark. We can see figures sleeping on the floor.
Larry turns on the lights and calls, "All right, people! It's seven
o'clock! Remember, we're trespassing. Balki, get 'em moving."
Balki, who has been
sleeping sitting up with a sheepherder's crook in his arms, gets up and hits the
crook on the floor, then makes a trilling sound and pats people with the crook
to awaken them. "Well, it's not exactly home but it's warmer than my
apartment," Susan notes. Balki hits the floor and trills again,
turning and hooking Mary Anne's foot with the crook. "I can't sleep
on the floor any more," she complains, "I'm getting a flat spot on my
hair." Larry is standing by the door and looks startled.
"He's here!" Larry gasps, "It's Twinkacetti! He's early!
Everybody hide!" Everyone grabs their sleeping bags and throws them
behind the counter, then they jump into a pup tent which is set up in the middle
of the floor as part of a camping supply display. Balki helps herd them
all in, then climbs inside himself. Larry runs across the store and leaps
into the tent, grabbing the zipper and pulling it closed in one movement.
Mr. Twinkacetti opens the door and looks
around, complaining, "Would you look at this? They left the lights
on! Even a
chimpanzee can turn off lights . . . and be better company!"
Mr. Twinkacetti turns to set his hat on the wooden Indian and take off his coat.
Behind him, the tent is moving across the floor. Mr. Twinkacetti thinks he
sees something, then turns back. Again the tent moves and this time Mr.
Twinkacetti catches it and runs forward. "Freeze it!" he shouts,
and the tent stops, "Come out! Come on!" The zipper opens
and Balki steps out, followed by the others. "Morning," Mr.
Twinkacetti greets them in turn, "Lovely hair." Mary Anne looks
annoyed. "Hello," Mr. Twinkacetti continues, "Warm?
Schleggelmilch!" "Rodent!" Mrs. Schleggelmilch barks.
Larry steps out last. "I know what you're going to say, Mr.
Twinkacetti, but this is all your fault," Balki notes. "Yeah, if
you didn't turn our heat off we wouldn't have to sleep here." "I
know it's my fault and I'm sorry," Mr. Twinkacetti offers humbly.
"Oh no, you're not gonna get away . . . hmm?" Larry asks, not sure
he's heard correctly. "Hey, all men are brothers, right?" Mr.
Twinkacetti says. "Who is this man?" Larry asks.
"You people, I would like to end our
little disagreement," Mr. Twinkacetti assures them as the phone rings and
Balki answers it,
"You don't think I like to make people suffer, do you?"
"Yeah," everyone says. "Oh, now that hurts," Mr.
Twinkacetti sighs, "Look, I'm willing to make a few repairs if you're
willing to pay the rent today." "Mr. Twinkacetti, it's a friend
for you," Balki says, "Mr. Vinnie the Finger." Mr.
Twinkacetti gasps deeply and snarls, "I'm not here, Turnip!"
Balki repeats Twinkacettiís gasps and tone, repeating into the phone, "He
says ĎIím not here, Turnip!í" In his own voice, Balki
continues, "Oh, well okay. Nice chatting with you, Mr. the Finger.
Bye." Balki hangs up the phone and returns to the others.
"Vinnie says he wants to take you fishing and to buy you a concrete
vest," Balki tells Mr. Twinkacetti. "Oh!" everyone hums to
each other. Balki turns to Larry and adds, "Nice man."
"Oh ho!" Larry says, "Balki, Balki . . . that was his bookie.
He needs money!" "Whoa," Mr. Twinkacetti grunts, looking
sick. "Our rent money!" Balki realizes.
"Y-y-y-yes!" Larry confirms. Everyone makes comments like
"We got him! Yeah!" "Listen, listen people!" Mr.
Twinkacetti cries, "This is more than a business. My life is at
stake. Doesn't anyone care?" No one replies.
"That silence is like a nail in my
heart," Mr. Twinkacetti sighs. Mrs. Schleggelmilch steps forward and
grabs him by the lapels. "Listen,
slug!" she says, "I want my front door fixed. By tomorrow."
"You got it, Schleggelmilch," Mr. Twinkacetti agrees. "We
want our places painted," Jennifer says. "Yeah," everyone
agrees. "And fumigated!" Max adds. "Right, right . .
. okay! You got a deal!" Mr. Twinkacetti agrees. Everyone is
happy except for Balki, who steps forward. "Wait a minute! Wait
a minute! Wait a minute!" Balki calls, finally climbing up on the
barber's chair to get everyone's attention, "People, listen! Don't
you see what's happening? We have no won. He has not given us
everything on the list." Balki takes the list out of his pocket.
"Look, Bartokomous," Mr. Twinkacetti runs forward, "If I give you
everything on that list I won't have any more money for anything else."
Balki rolls his eyes and motions like he is spitting. "What do you
think? I just fell off the turnip truck?" Balki asks, "Well, I
didn't! I jumped off with my own two feet!" Balki consults the
list. "Now, Max . . . you said that the building needs a new washer
and dryer." "Right," Max nods. "Uh . . .
okay," Mr. Twinkacetti agrees, even though it causes him pain.
"And . . . and . . . and Susan, you
need your ceiling fixed." "The whole thing?" Mr.
Twinkacetti cries. Susan nods. "Uh," Mr. Twinkacetti
hesitates, then growls and says, "Okay." "Miss
Schleggelmilch, your carpeting," Balki adds. "You're pushing
Mr. Twinkacetti says angrily. "I'm going to call Mr. the
Finger," Balki threatens. "Okay! Okay! Okay"
Mr. Twinkacetti gives in, "But that's it!" "Well, I got
what I wanted!" Mrs. Schleggelmilch says happily. "Me,
too!" Max agrees. "Now get Norma Rae outta here!" Mr.
Twinkacetti tells Larry and he stalks off to his office. "No,
wait!" Balki cries, "There's more thing on the list! We can
fight! We can hold out! We can win!" "Oh, some other
time, kid. I gotta get to work," Mrs. Schleggelmilch says, turning to
leave. "Yeah, and I gotta go look for a job," Max adds.
Everyone starts to leave. "Thanks for everything, Balki,"
Jennifer offers. "But . . . we don't have everything!" Balki
points out, "What about remodeling the recreation room?"
"Yeah!" Larry cheers, as he's the only one left. "What
about air conditioning?" "Yeah, air conditioning!" Larry
repeats. "What about the security system?" "Balki,
it's over," Larry points out. "Okay," Balki sighs sadly,
and he sits down dejectedly.
Back upstairs, Larry and Balki enter the
apartment. Balki still looks depressed. "Hey, this is great!
Look!" Larry says, then puffs
out some breaths through his mouth, "I can't see my breath! The heat
is on!" Larry sets his sleeping bag and coat on the chair and turns
to shut he door. Balki drops his coat in the other chair and then squats
down at the fireplace. "Balki . . . what are you doing?" Larry
asks. "I must sit among the ashes," Balki explains. Larry
leans over and says, "No! Don't sit among the ashes."
"I am humiliated," Balki says, "I make a fool of myself."
"No, you didn't," Larry assures him, leading him out of the ashes,
"You made a lot of people very happy! Come on." They walk
to the couch and sit down. "I don't understand why they are
happy," Balki sighs, "We lose." "We didn't lose,"
Larry says, "Twinkacetti is gonna spend two months fixing this place
up." "But we don't get everything on the list," Balki
reminds him. "We never planned to get everything on the list,"
Larry explains. "Cousin, you said to Mr. Twinkacetti that we will not
quit until we get everything," Balki reminds him, "And I want to do
what you said." "That's called negotiating," Larry
explains, "You ask for more than you want so you get what you need."
"Then why donít you just ask for what you need?" Balki asks.
"Because you wonít get it," Larry explains. "Youíre
right, I donít get it!" Balki cries.
"Balki, you did a great job,"
Larry insists. "I did?" "You did," Larry nods.
"I did good?" "You did great!" Larry smiles, "You
got us more than we ever expected. You're a very good negotiator.
You stood up to Twinkacetti." "I guess I did," Balki
were going to . . . to stop before we got the washer and dryer."
"This building is very lucky to have Balki Bartokomous living here,"
Larry says. "Really?" Balki asks. "I know Iím
better off," Larry smiles. Their front door suddenly opens and Mary
Anne comes in, calling, "Hi! I just wanted to say thank you.
You were terrific." "Oh well, you know, I . . . " Larry
begins. "I was talking to Balki," Mary Anne clarifies, and she
walks around Larry to Balki. "Right, I knew that," Larry says.
"You were magnetic," Mary Anne tells Balki. Balki looks at Larry
and says, "She called me a magnet." "Youíve got guts,
Balki," Mary Anne continues, "I like that in a refugee. How
about coming up to my place for breakfast? Would you like that?"
"Does a sheep like potato root?" Balki asks. Mary Anne doesnít
know how to respond to this, staring blankly ahead. "That means
yes," Balki explains, "You little lamb kabob." Balki kisses
her hand and she starts to lead him to the door. "Donít wait
up," Balki tells Larry, "Iím going to negotiate with her."
There are some notable
differences between the final episode and an undated script version we have:
In the first scene Balki is sitting at the kitchen table in his pajamas, pouring
cereal and reading the back of the box. He tears the box top off the
package and says "Only eleven more boxes and then I get my Plastic Man
pajamas." Larry calls from the bathroom, asking what time it is.
Balki checks a digital clock sitting on the counter and says "Seven
thirty-two." Then as the number changes he gets excited and says
"No, make that seven thirty-three. I just love digital."
Larry asks if Balki has made coffee, after the percolator joke he says he'll
make coffee as soon as he fixes the sink.
explaining why he has toilet paper on his face, Larry says "I cut my face
shaving . . . repeatedly. And why did I cut myself shaving you ask?"
to which Balki says "I did?" Larry goes on to say "Because
once again the Ayatolla Twinkacetti has left us with no hot water. The
other day it was the furnace, and now it's the hot water and kitchen sink again.
I'm getting sick of this." Larry tries the garbage disposal and we
hear the sound of a stuck motor. The water does not fly up into Larry's
face in this script version, although when they open the door to Jennifer it
indicates Larry dries himself off so it must have been in earlier versions and
then taken out and put back again.
comments that it's the garbage disposal that's broken again and Balki says
"Oh, what a break. I have fixed many garbage disposals."
Larry says "Come on. You didn't have garbage disposals in Mypos, you
probably used goats." To which Balki replies, "And you think
they never get sick?"
more conversation in this script version after Larry tells Balki to get off the
boat and join the world. Balki says "What world? In Mypos, we
have only one landlord, and he is the King. If you don't like your house,
the King throws you out on your buttocks." Larry replies, "Balki,
you're in America now. We have basic rights guaranteed by the
Constitution." Balki says with reverence, "The Constitution.
We study that in citizenship class. This is such a great country: striped
toothpaste and the Constitution." "Yes, and we've had to
fight hard for both," Larry comments. After this Balki says, "So
when are you going to tell Twinkacetti to fix the disposal?" Larry,
who is very hesitant to confront Twinkacetti throughout this script, says
"Well, I'm not going to actually talk to him, I was going to write him a
really nasty anonymous letter." Balki asks what that is and Larry
sighs, "I don't even want to talk about this before my morning
is the one who suggests getting the tenants together to discuss their grievances
and Larry is against it until Jennifer says she thinks it's a terrific idea,
then Larry is all for it, saying "It does have some merit. I guess we
could meet . . . in secret . . . in the middle of the night . . . maybe in an
underground parking garage." Jennifer says, "Great, I'll make
some clam dip." After she goes to the bathroom Balki says,
"Cousin Larry, this is so exciting. Democracy in action and clam dip,
too." To which Larry replies, "I hate clam dip."
this script Mrs. Schleggelmilch is referred to as Harriet. At the
beginning of the tenants' meeting Max complains "Our carpet has more holes
than a golf course."
After Balki makes his speech about the group coming together Larry comments,
"Thank you, Clark Kent, but we're not quite ready to come out of the phone
booth yet. This is just a discussion of what might go into that
anonymous letter." Harriet says "Look, all I want is my front
door fixed. It never closes the same way twice." Larry says,
"The question is, what's a safe way to get Twinkacetti to fix these things?
Let's face it, he's not very nice." "Not nice?" Harriet
asks. "The man is a rodent."
suggests they need a leader and Balki suggests Cousin Larry because "He's
got the pencil." "Well, it's not my pencil . . . " Larry
says, trying to get out of it. Later after the "reek of
leadership" lines Larry says "We can discuss this later. Let's
nail down the leadership thing at the next meeting . . . next year."
raises his hand and asks "Do you think we could get a new light bulb in the
hall?" Larry nervously says, "Well, sure. But we don't
want to make waves . . . I'm sure as long as we asked for something under
one hundred watts." At this point Max says "Come on, Appleton.
Quit whimping around. I've got a roach in my apartment I could list as a
dependent." It's at this point that Larry becomes bolder and starts
saying Twinkacetti should fix everything, leading him to make up the Tupperware
party when Twinkacetti shows up. Twinkacetti asks Balki who's in charge
and Balki says Cousin Larry.
Twinkacetti tells his sob story about his grandmothers Balki not only offers
support but give Twinkacetti two dollars. When he finds out Twinkacetti
was lying he snatches his money back. After Twinkie says they have no
right to meet Balki says "Oh, yes, we do. This is America, buster.
We've got a Constitution and a Bag of Rights." "Bill of
Rights," Larry corrects. Balki then tells the story of the Boston Tea
Party and asks "What if we dressed up like Indians and didn't pay our rent,
what would you call that, Cousin Larry?" "I'd call it a very
strange rent strike," Larry answers.
Larry wakes up to no electricity or heat he asks "What does Twinkacetti
thing he's doing?" "He's probably trying to make up crack and
give up the rent strike," Balki explains. "It's working,"
Larry says, shivering. After Larry takes the candle he says to Balki,
"I hope you're happy." "No, I really wanted scrambled
eggs," Balki replies. Larry says it's Balki's fault for calling the
rent strike and that Twinkacetti wins.
of selling fig cakes Balki says his mama asked him to sell mangos on the street
corner. "And we don't even have mangos in Mypos," Balki
Larry finds out he can't have coffee Balki prefaces it by saying there is good
news and bad news, the bad news being they have no water. "What's the
good news?" Larry asks. "The good news is the gas is off so you
can't stick you head in the oven," Balki answers. "Lucky break,
announces he will try to make coffee with Diet Pepsi instead of ginger ale.
When Larry realizes he simply can't make coffee he moans, "And this is just
the first day. It could get ugly. What if we're evicted? We
could end up on the street like those guys who collect tin foil . . . sleeping
under the L, looking for coffee in garbage cans."
Balki calls Twinkacetti a Myposian word (which is not specified in the script,
it just says "Myposian Epithet") he explains it's a by-product of
sheep droppings, then adds "And our number one export."
Twinkacetti scowls at Balki, saying, "Right now your life should be
flashing before your eyes."
of Larry paying for the coffee (which he wants to do) Twinkacetti takes his
phone call from Vinnie then while they're by the coffee. During that time
Balki sneaks Larry a cup and Twinkacetti catches him. "Hey, that's
ten bucks!" Twinkacetti says. "This is America. Sue
me," Balki answers.
of complaining about the lights being left on, when Twinkacetti enters the store
he says "Damn business. If I had any guts I'd torch this place and
collect the insurance." Later when he catches the tent moving and
Balki opens he flap Balki says "Good morning." Twinkacetti asks,
"What the hell are you doing in there?" Balki thinks a beat,
then says, "Camping?"
Larry asks "Who is this man?" Balki says "It looks like
Mr. Twinkacetti." When Vinnie the Finger calls Larry asks Balki
"Do I hear a heavenly choir?" Balki listens and says, "I
don't think so." After Larry explains Twinkie lost money to his
bookie Balki says, "Wait a minute. I think I hear the music. He
needs money - - our rent money." Balki then turns to the others and
states "So you see, everybody, we've got Twinkacetti by the sheep
of just taking Twinkacetti's word that he'll make the repairs Larry wants to
have him sign it in writing. After agreeing to a few things Balki says
"Not so fast, mister. We've barely itched the surface. We just
threw our first bail of tea in the harbor. Tippicanoe and rent strike too.
We have not yet begun to gripe." Larry says, "Balki, I think
we've got everything we've asked for." Balki says, "Some of us
aren't through asking. Watch and learn."
everyone is happy with what they have, Balki continues to try to get more.
"People, wait. We can get more. How about a doorman?
Wouldn't you like a tennis court on the roof?" Then later,
"Where's your American spirit? We can get whatever we want. A
set of satellite dishes . . . Aluminum siding . . . Pet doors, maid
service, room service . . . diaper service!"
Balki and Larry return to the apartment, Balki does not sit among the ashes.
They go right to the couch where Balki says, "I lost them. I am not a
leader of men." "Balki, you did fine," Larry assures him.
"You got Twinkacetti to give us more than we asked for. You just
reached too far, that's all." "But, Cousin Larry, you said that
in America we have the right to fight for what's ours. Why didn't they
fight?" Larry explains, "Balki, you fight for food. You
don't fight for gravy. This country is based on compromise."
"I missed the whole point," Balki says. "Who am I to fight
for America rights when I'm not even an American?" "Balki, you
acted more like an American than any of us. You were willing to
fight. All I was willin to do was write an anonymous letter . . . and I
was lying about that." "So, maybe you learned to fight and I
learned to compromise," Balki says, then proudly adds, "Between the
two of us we make one good American."
Mary Anne asks Balki to breakfast he calls her "Stewardess of my
dreams." He tells Cousin Larry "Don't wait up," and they
head out the door. Larry closes the door behind them and the knob comes
off in his hand. "I'll fix it myself," he says.
on to the next episode . . .