Strangers Episode Guide
24 - Snow Way to Treat a Lady, Part One
First Air Date:
February 18, 1987
Nielsen Rating: 17.4 HH
TV Guide Description: Larry
tries to transform himself into an expert skier overnight to impress Jennifer on
the gang's ski trip. Part 1 of two.
Created by: Dale McRaven
Written by: Robert Griffard & Howard Adler
Directed by: Joel Zwick
Bronson Pinchot: Balki Bartokomous
Mark Linn-Baker: Larry Appleton
Melanie Wilson: Jennifer Lyons
Rebeca Arthur: Mary Anne
Appearances: Dimitri can be seen on the kitchen table while the guys are
trying on their skis. He is standing on skis and wearing a jacket, ski
goggles and a scarf which is pulled back to make it look as if he is sailing
down the slopes already.
"Because Cousin Larry have a recess in his jeans."
"It ainít over Ďtil the fat lady eats."
ridiculous: Said twice.
used in this episode:
"Donít do that."
Other running jokes
used in this episode:
Balki runs in the door and jumps on the couch (also this time he misses)
Balki tries to explain something but Larry keeps interrupting him until he gets
Balki to respond, never hearing what Balki has to say (which is usually pivotal)
Larry lies to impress Jennifer, getting everyone into trouble
Larry comes up with a plan, getting everyone into trouble
Balki says something in Myposian then translates it into English
Balki laughs at his own joke
They grab each other by the shirt, noses and
The guys and gals go on a horrible vacation where they nearly die
Joking about Larryís lack of an upper lip
This was the first of several disaster vacations that Larry planned (even though
technically he didn't originally plan this one).
- The title of the episode is a pun on the saying
"No way to treat a lady."
- When Balki makes the joke about "the agony of da feet" he is
referring to the opening credits of ABCís Wide World of Sports.
Part of the theme song for long running anthology series featured the line
"the thrill of victory . . . and the agony of defeat." Footage
of ski jumper Vinko Bogataj crashing as he competed accompanied the latter half
of that sentence, tying in with Balkiís use of the phrase while they are
learning how to ski.
- This is the first time that the blue screen
effect and on-location stunt doubles would be used on the series for an
extensive sequence. This would be done again on their second disastrous
two-part vacation in Up a Lazy River and in several episodes to follow.
- The producers had a $20,000 ski slope constructed
on the set, using carpeting for snow, much to the surprise of the cast who had
to admit that none of them knew how to ski! Ski instructors were then
hired to give the cast skiing lessons on the snow carpeting!
- The line "bodies all achiní and racked
with pain" is part of the the song "Old Man River" from the
- The sight gag with Larry pressed against the
cabin door by the avalanche remains one of the most memorable and hilarious
moments of the entire series.
- At the beginning of this episode Larry explains how his family went
skiing every winter, but in the previous episode Life Savers Larry told
the burglar that heíd never been skiing.
- Many thanks to Cousin Moki from Larry_and_Balki
- Livejournal for making this interesting observation about the "skiing
in the living room" scene. Cousin Moki points out in the photo to the
left (click to enlarge) that Bronson and Mark's "marks" (referring to
marks made on the floor of a stage to show actors where their positions are for
filming . . . it's important for actors to adhere to these for the camera work
to come out right during filming) are clearly visible on the carpet!
Cousin Moki also notes that the upstage of the set is slightly elevated.
is sitting on the couch in the apartment reading a book when Balki runs in
excitedly, saying that Larry will never guess what as he runs and jumps on the
back of the couch, promptly falling off behind it. He pops back up and
Larry asks if heís all right, which Balki confirms saying "I couldnít
be better." Balki tells Larry that heís signed them up for a three
day, two night ski trip to the Hidden Mountain Ski Resort. "Weíre
going skiing!" Balki says excitedly. "Skiing? What are you
talking about?" Larry asks. "That nice game where you put sticks
on your feet and slide down a mountain," Balki explains.
clarifies that he knows what skiing is and he hates skiing. Balki asks how
Larry knows . . . has he ever tried it? Larry explains that his family
used to go skiing every winter. "And every winter I spent a week with
my face in the snow. My brothers and sisters would use me a as ski jump.
Iím the only Appleton who canít ski . . . dad thinks itís a recessive gene
or something." Balki says Larry hasnít even heard the best part yet
but Larry interrupts him, saying Balki signed him up for something without his
permission. Balki keeps trying to tell Larry the rest but Larry
continually interrupts, trying to get Balki to admit heíd done something
wrong. Balki finally admits to the blame, then sighs, "Iím
is a knock at the door and Larry gets up to answer it, saying that no matter
what Balki will not get him on a pair of skis again. Larry opens the door
and Jennifer steps inside saying, "Hi, Larry. Ready to hit the
slopes?" Balki tells Jennifer heís sorry but that he and Larry
canít go skiing with he and Mary Anne. Larry is startled to hear Balki
say this. Jennifer is disappointed because they needed two more people to
get a group rate. "Why canít you go?" she asks.
"Because Cousin Larry have a recess in his jeans," Balki explains, not
understanding himself what he means. Larry quickly cuts in, improvising
that what heíd said was heíd have to "reassess my means. Oh, and
great news! I can afford it."
is relieved, saying she needs his deposit of $45. Larry starts to write
her a check, working in a boast by saying that price is cheap when youíre used
to skiing at Aspen or the Alps. Balki jumps in, saying, "But Cousin,
you told me hate skiing!" "Alone," Larry covers.
"I hate skiing alone. Going down the face of a mountain where no man
has skied before. I want somebody to share it with." He gazes
at Jennifer longingly. She notices this and quickly explains, "Well,
there will be twenty of us!" Once again Balki tries to be helpful by
offering, "Cousin Larry used to be a ski jump!" " . . . er,"
Larry quickly covers, "Ski jumper, yeah. Used to be a ski jumper.
But this trip weíll all keep our skis on the snow." Larry,
befuddled, hands Jennifer his checkbook then she hands it back so he can tear
the check out and give it to her. Jennifer says sheíll see them Friday
Larry stands at the door daydreaming about
the impending trip with Jennifer. "Me and Jennifer . . . long talks
by the fire . . . jacuzzi . . . moonlight . .
. I wish I had time to grow a beard." Balki approaches him.
"Observation," Balki begins, "a man says he hates skiing. A
woman he yearns for walks into the room and suddenly that same man is skiing the
Alps. Now, Cousin, konk me on the head with an anvil if Iím wrong, but
didnít you just tell one lallopalooza of a lie?" "Not at
all," Larry answers. "You told me you hate skiing!" Balki
insists. "Balki, thereís a difference between skiing and skiing
with Jennifer. One of them is a sport. The other is something worth
dying for. So technically I wasnít lying."
Balki says that in Myposian they have a
saying and proceeds to recite it in Myposian. "Do you want me to
translate?" "No, not really," Larry admits. "It
says he who lies falls into a deep pit," Balki explains anyway.
"In America we have a saying," Larry counters, "Butt out!"
Larry continues to daydream about candlelit dinners and romantic music and
wonders aloud that maybe he should take his Julio Iglesias tapes.
In the next scene Larry and Balki are in
the living room with ski equipment. Larry has his ski boots on already and
Balki is trying his on. Larry asks how they feel and when Balki gets up to
walk he does so awkwardly, stating "Well, ooh . . . kind of make you walk
like Lee Majors." Balki walks over to the couch and picks up a set of
skis, posing with them over his shoulder. "How do I look?"
"Like six million bucks," Larry answers. Larry goes on to say he
got them a book to teach them everything they need to know and asks Balki if
heís seen the book. Larry looks down on the coffee table as Balki turns
around, the skis just missing Larryís head as they swing around. Larry
sees it on the couch and bends down in that direction as Balki turns back, the
skis again missing Larryís head. Larry notices how close the skis are
when he stands up and tells Balki to be careful. Balki says maybe he
should put them down and swings around again; this time the skis hit Larry on
Larry says heíll put the skis down on
the floor if Balki moves the coffee table. As Balki pulls the table aside
he comments, "These boots are killing
me. Is that what they mean by the agony of da feet?" Balki
laughs at his own joke. Larry shows Balki the book, called The Zen Book of
Skiing: Achieving Oneness with the Snow. The book says it will help them
think like an expert skier. Larry opens to the beginning and reads,
"Chapter One: Putting on Your Skis." He looks around then tosses
the book aside, saying "I can get us that far."
Walking over to the two sets of skis,
Larry demonstrates how to put them on by pushing your toe in and then pressing
your heel down so the skis lock onto the boots. They are both standing in
the living room with their skis on, stepping from one to the other to get the
feel of them. "Boy, these little babies really lock on," Balki
comments, then asks, "How you get them off?" "Well, usually
I fall and they pop right off," Larry explains.
Realizing that he needs to get the book,
Larry tries to maneuver around Balki but they end up crossing their skis in
front so that neither of them can move or step away. Larry wants Balki to
back up and pushes him so that Balki ends up leaning far back. Larry helps
to pull Balki forward again but Balki canít resist pushing Larry back in turn,
who sways backwards and then forwards. "Donít do that," Larry
warns when he stops. Larry again urges Balki to back up and pushes him so
that Balki sways backwards then forwards. Balki in turn pushes Larry, who
pushes Balki as he sways by and the both of them stand, swaying back and forth
past each other.
Larry grabs Balki by the shirt and Balki grabs Larryís shirt in return.
Larry in turn grabs Balkiís nose and Balki grabs Larryís nose. Finally
Larry grabs Balkiís hair and hangs onto his shirt as Balki does the same and
they stop swaying, eyeing each other menacingly. Larry suggests that on
the count of three they both let go. They count to three but neither
releases their grip. "Okay, on the count of three weíll really
let go," Larry offers, and this time they do both let go on. They
finally work out how to get free from each othersí skis but they have the same
problem of not being able to turn to reach the book.
Balki asks if Larry has any ideas how they
can get over there and Larry remembers a way to do it. He works out to
move his downhill ski over his uphill ski, which they both do so theyíre
standing cross legged. "Now remember this move," Larry suggests,
"because my brothers and sisters used to use it to step over me."
As they struggle to remain standing Balki asks Larry if he really thinks he can
be an expert skier by tomorrow afternoon. Larry says heís going to try,
then says they should move their uphill ski over their
downhill one and they will be home free. They try doing this but both end
up falling over onto the floor.
Larry says that Balki is right.
"Who am I trying to kid? I canít even ski in my own living
room." Balki admits that heís glad because now Larry can make a new
beginning and tell Jennifer the truth. "Who said anything about the
truth?" Larry asks, "I just need a better plan." "You
say plan but you mean lies," Balki points out. But Larry offers a new
plan anyway. "As soon as we get up there Iíll insist we go for one
run before the lifts close. Then after about a hundred yards Iíll fall
in a soft spot, fake an injury and spend the rest of the weekend getting
sympathy from Jennifer." "Listen to yourself!" Balki sighs,
"You want to tell one more lie to cover up another! Itís like a
snowball rolling down a hill. By the time it get to the bottom it will be
one humongous snowball of lies!" "What happened to the
pit?" Larry asks. "Where do you think the snowball lands?"
cousins have managed to face one another and pull themselves up into a standing
position. Larry complains that Balki thinks everything is black and white
and insists itís not, that thereís a lot of gray in the world. "I
am not lying. Iím simply reshaping the facts into a greater truth."
Balki leans into Larry, pushing him backwards as he asks why Larry has to
reshape the facts. "Why canít you just be Larry Appleton?"
Larry pushes Balki backwards as he responds, "Balki, where have you been?
I have been Larry Appleton for the past six months and Jennifer isnít
interested in him!" Balki pushes Larry backward again as he points
out "Thatís because she never sees him!" Larry says that after
Jennifer has been blinded by love he will show her the real Larry Appleton.
"But tomorrow all Jennifer is going to see is Larry Appleton, downhill
racer!" They try to walk away from each other but end up falling onto
the couch in a heap.
the ski resort, Balki and Larry are at the top of the mountain, moving toward a
remote spot. Balki is going on about how fun the ski lift was. Larry
asks if Balki thinks anyone noticed that he fell when they got off and Balki
assures him that "those people were laughing about something else."
Balki apologizes for running over Larryís hand and Larry assures Balki heís
used to it. Larry points down the slope and says heíll look good for
about a hundred yards then fall in a soft pile of snow and fake an injury.
"The pit deepens," Balki warns.
Larry notices the girls coming and
suggests they look cool, so they cross their skis and pose as Mary Anne and
Jennifer approach. "What are you guys doing over here?" Mary
Anne asks. "Trying to look cool," Balki explains.
"Iím just a sucker for fresh powder," Larry explains.
"But the run is over there, this side isnít even marked," Jennifer
points out. "Looks to steep for me!" Mary Anne comments. "Címon,
take a bite out of life!" Larry states boldly as he puts on his goggles.
"No guts, no glory!" Larry starts down the slope and immediately
starts screaming in fear. "Cousin, I think you missed your soft
spot!" Balki calls.
Screaming for help, Larry continues wildly
down the hill, veering dangerously close to some trees. "Boy he
really likes to show off, doesnít he?" Mary Anne asks. "No,
heís screaming for help!" Balki realizes. Larry continues to cry
until he finally slams face first into the snow. The girls start skiing
down to help him and Balki reluctantly follows, unsure on his skis as he starts.
Balki manages to ski pretty straight and he yells excitedly, "Iím
skiing!" before he, too, crashes onto the snow. As Balki lays prone
on the slope he calls out, "Cousin, are we having fun . . . or what?"
second act begins with a shot of a cabin in the woods as night is falling.
Balki and Mary Anne peek in as Mary Anne calls to ask if anybody is home.
When no one answers they enter the cabin, relieved to have found a shelter from
the cold. Jennifer suggests they rest there for a couple of minutes and
then make their way down the hill to try to find the highway. She takes
Larryís broken skis to set them aside. "Weíve been walking for
two hours, Iím exhausted," Mary Anne complains.
Balki walks over to Larry and says,
"Well, Iíll say one thing for us. I think we all achieved oneness
with the snow. And you . . . you achieved oneness with that tree,
huh?" "Do I have any more pine needles sticking out of my
forehead?" Larry asks. "No," Balki replies after checking.
"Now I know what it feels like to have acupuncture at sixty miles per
hour," Larry sighs. Jennifer suggests that Larry sit down, that he
must be really shaken up. Larry assures her heís fine, then thinks twice
about it and adds, "except for my ankle. I think I twisted it."
They move to sit down and Larry suggests that since itís getting dark they
should stay there for the night since he doesnít think he can walk on his
ankle. Balki rolls his eyes at this.
Anne approaches them showing that sheís found a blanket and a bottle of wine.
Jennifer suggests that Larry and Balki get out of their wet clothes while they
go get some of the firewood they saw outside. Larry offers to open the
wine for Mary Anne as the girls go outside. Larry gives Balki a smug look
of satisfaction. "Well, well, well . . . Mr. Liar Liar Pants on
Fire!" Balki scolds. "I hope youíre happy!"
"Yes, very happy!" Larry confirms. "How can you say
that?" Balki asks in disbelief. "We slide down the wrong side of
the mountain, wander around for two hours, bodies all achiní and racked with
pain, and now we stuck in this cabin with the girls for the whole night!"
Balki suddenly realizes what heís said and Larry offers, "You donít
have to thank me now. Looks like fate has put right where we wanted to
be." "Cousin, no, not fate! Itís your lies that put us
here!" Balki warns. "Fate, lies, whatís the difference?"
Larry asks. "My plan is working."
Balki points out that every since Larry
started to lie things have been going wrong. "Going wrong?"
Larry asks with surprise. "Balki, look around. I have wine . .
. a beautiful woman . . . a mountain cabin. I guess this puts an end once
and for all to the great Myposian pit theory." "Well, maybe
things look good now," Balki sighs, "but you mark my words . . . it
ainít over Ďtil the fat lady eats."
Later that night the couples are gathered
on the floor around the fireplace where a comfortable blaze is burning as Larry
continues a story heís telling about participating in the giant slalom finals
at Insbrook and how it came down to a duel between someone named
Ingmar and himself. As Larry continues this wild fabrication Balki warns
that "Itís getting deeper . . . and deeper." Unabated, Larry
continues his story, saying that at the last second a snowshoe rabbit was in his
path and to save the rabbitís life he lost the race. "I grew up a
lot on the mountain that day. See, I could have skied right through that
furry little creature but I learned there are a lot of things more important
than winning." "Is the truth one of them?" Balki asks.
Finishing his story, Larry says his racing
days are over and he likes to live in the present. "Thereís so much
I donít know about you," Jennifer smiles. "You can say that
again," Balki agrees, "and that reminds me, I have a story."
He babbles in derogatory Myposian then explains the story is called The Little
Goat Herder Who Lied. Larry suggests the girls may be tired of stories but
Jennifer encourages Balki to continue.
upon a time there was a little goat herder and he had curly brown hair and
little round cheeks and no upper lip at all." Larry tries to
interrupt but Balki continues. "It came to pass that the King
announced a royal yak hunt. It was the day of the hunt and the little goat
herder decided to show off for the fair maiden, so he shot an arrow into the air
and where it landed he didnít care. But he should have, because it hit
the king right smack in the royal buttocks. The king was exceedingly angry
and he threw the little goat herder into the dungeon . . . a dungeon not unlike
a pit!" "I think I saw that on TV!" Mary Anne interjects.
"Didnít Richard Chamberlain play the little goat herder?"
Everyone stares at her in surprise, until Larry finally sighs, "Ah those
Mypos tales. Who knows what they mean? And who cares?"
Mary Anne announces theyíre using their
last log as she puts it on the fire. Larry remarks that a good way to
fight off the cold is with body heat and eyes Jennifer longingly. Jennifer
reacts nervously, saying "Thatís a great last resort but we have a
fire." Jennifer says sheíll go get more wood but Larry volunteers
to go out and get some instead. As he gets up Balki asks how his ankle is
doing and Larry remembers to limp, saying "Comes and goes."
"Changes legs, too," Balki observes. Larry puts on his jacket
and goes outside, commenting on how cold it is as he closes the door behind him.
says sheís getting hungry and goes to check if thereís any food. As
Balki and Mary Anne sit by the fire Balki apologizes for ruining her ski trip.
She says itís okay, that sheís having fun. "But a little body
heat would be nice," she adds. Balki picks up on her signal and slyly
places his arm around her, saying, "Well, itís a good thing I brought my
body." He leans in to kiss her and as he does the whole cabin begins
to shake violently. They finally part as the shaking stops and Balki
sighs, "Wwowww!" "Did you feel that?" Mary Anne asks.
"Well, of course I did, donít be ridiculous!" Balki answers, then
looks at her knowingly. "I still respect you," he assures her.
worriedly says she thinks they just had an earthquake. "They donít
have earthquakes in Wisconsin!" Mary Anne points out, "It was probably
just an avalanche." Suddenly realizing what this means, they run to
the front door of the cabin and Balki opens it to reveal Larry pressed against
the door by a wall of snow, a stunned expression on his face. "I
found the wood," he manages to say, dropping the log he was carrying.
Larry collapses onto Balkiís shoulders,
who carries him over to the tiny couch. Jennifer asks Larry if heís okay
and Larry explains, "I was outside . . . I was happy . . . Iíd found the
perfect log. And suddenly I heard this . . . this . . . . "
Jennifer offers. "Yes, this rumbling! I turned around and saw
this big . . . this big . . . . " "Mountain?" ventures Mary
Anne. "Yes, mountain! The mountain started chasing me towards
the . . . the . . . the . . . . " "Pit?" asks Balki.
Larry eyes him in frustration. "No, not the pit. Where we are
now . . . the cabin! I never saw so much snow! There was enough snow
to cover this entire . . . . " Larry and Balki jump up worriedly and
run to the windows as the girls sit together on the couch. The guys open
to windows to find only snow, then close them, switch windows with one another
and open them again. Balki and Larry grab each other worriedly.
"Oh Cousin, weíre buried alive!" Balki stutters. "Not for
long," Larry answers, "Very soon weíll all be dead."
Be Continued . . .
on to the next episode . . .