Perfect Strangers Episode Guide

EPISODE 59 - The Gift of the Mypiot

First Air Date: December 16, 1988
Nielsen Rating: 12.8 HH

TV Guide Description: Balki gets caught up in the Christmas spirit and invites the lonely Mr. Gorpley to the boys' Christmas Eve party, which ruins the holiday mood for Scroogelike Larry.

Co-Producer: James OíKeefe
Created by: Dale McRaven
Written by: John B. Collins
Directed by: Joel Zwick

Cast:
Bronson Pinchot: Balki Bartokomous
Mark Linn-Baker: Larry Appleton
Melanie Wilson: Jennifer Lyons
Rebeca Arthur: Mary Anne
Belita Moreno: Miss Lydia Markham

Guest Cast:
Jo Marie Payton-France: Harriette Winslow
Sam Anderson: Mr. Sam Gorpley
Jim Doughan: Jimmy the Security Guard
Kate Finlayson: Allyson

Dimitri Appearances: Dimitri is not seen in this episode.

Balki-isms:
"You said you were choking. Iím giving you the ham hock maneuver!"
"Well, Cousin Larryís having a nervous break dance."
"I have never been realer."

Donít be ridiculous: Not said in this episode.

Other catchphrases used in this episode:
"Wwowww!!"
"Well, we gotta talk about that."
"What was the question?"
"Are you crazy?"
Balkiís "Ha!"

Other running jokes used in this episode:
Balki avoids answering a question of Larryís because he know he wonít like the answer, countering with simple questions of his own
Lydia wears one of her fancy party dresses
Balki dressed as Balki Claus

Songs:
"Hark the Herald Angels Sing" - sung by everyone at the end of the episode

Interesting facts:
-
The name of this episode is a take off on the name of a classic O. Henry Christmas story entitled The Gift of the Magi.
-
The snow in the transition scenes of the apartment and Chronicle buildings were special effects done with matte paintings and superimposed snow.
- Kate Finlayson appears as "Allyson" in this episode and is seen at the beginning of the episode and again at the Christmas party, although she is not present during the second half of the party (this is because of a scene that was cut from the show).  The character of Allyson apparently works at the Chicago Chronicle but no other mention of her is ever made in the series and she never made another appearance.  Kate Finlayson now teaches classes in NIA (Neuromuscular Integrative Action) and has her own website.
- This was the second (and last) Christmas episode made for the series.  Once again Balki dresses as Santa and calls himself Balki Claus.  Itís surprising there were no more Christmas episodes for the rest of the series, seeing what an important holiday it was for Balki and Larry.
- When Balki makes the comment that "This is not Geraldo" after Harriette tries to attack Mr. Gorpley, heís refering to Geraldo Riveraís then popular afternoon show which was very much in the style of The Jerry Springer Show today.
- Sometime between the arrival of Mr. Gorpley and the appearance of Balki Claus two of the guests, Allyson (the woman seen at the office at the beginning of the episode) and Jimmy have left and two other guests arrive . . . an unknown woman and the man who is also often seen in the mailroom (and elsewhere) as a regular background character.  The disappearance of Jimmy and Allyson is explained in the script variations below.
- Sam Anderson said that his was his favorite episode, which is understandable considering it is the most dramatic one in which his character, Mr. Gorpley, was featured.
- After the end credits there is a shot of Balki and Larry sitting at the window looking out at the snow with the words "Happy Holidays" superimposed on the screen.  Jennifer and Mary Anne can be seen in the background, as well as Harriette.
- Included in the shooting script for this episode was the pickup of the scene for College Bound with Bronson that wasn't filmed the previous week due to Bronson's ear infection which prevented him from flying back to Los Angeles from New York for that week's filming.

Bloopers and Inconsistencies:
-
At this point Balki and Larry have been working at the newspaper for less than two seasons (or two years).  However, Mr. Gorpley tells his mother that his wife has been remarried for the past two years and mentions later in the episode he was divorced three years before.  Yet Harriette threatened to tell Mr. Gorpley's wife that he was messing around in the elevator at the company Christmas party during the first episode of season three, the first week Balki and Larry were working at the paper.


Synopsis:
The episode begins in the basement of the Chicago Chronicle.  Balki is at his worktable with Jimmy the security guard, Lydia and another female co-worker named Allyson.  "Harriette!  Harriette!" Balki calls, motioning toward the elevator, "Come over and look the Christmas present my mother sent me from Mypos."  Harriette hurries over as Balki reaches into a box and pulls out a carved, ornate wooden cup with a lid. Everyone gasps in awe.  "Oh, Balki, itís beautiful!" Lydia comments, then asks, "Is it hand-carved?"  "Yeah, itís a Davros cup," Balki explains, "Itís made by the finest artist on Mypos, Davros Praxiteles."  "Look at the detail on it!" Harriette notes, taking the cup to look at it closer.  "It take him one year just to carve one cup," Balki explains as Jimmy takes it to look closer.

Mr. Gorpley walks out of his office, saying, "Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey!  What is this?  Just because itís Christmas Eve doesnít mean weíre not still working here.  Come on, clear the area.  Letís go."  Everyone walks away and Jimmy hands the cup back to Balki.  "Mr. Gorpley," Balki says, "Mr. Gorpley!"  "What?" Mr. Gorpley asks in annoyance.  "Look the beautiful cup my mother send me for Christmas!"  "I know, I heard," Mr. Gorpley scowls, "Your mother loves you, she gave you a present, Iím all choked up."  Balki sets the cup on the table and runs behind Mr. Gorpley, grabbing him around the middle and squeezing tightly.  "Bartokomous, what are you doing?" Gorpley cries.  "You said you were choking.  Iím giving you the ham hock maneuver!" Balki explains.  "Iím over it," Gorpley assures him.

Larry enters from the parking garage, looking frazzled and harried.  Heís carrying a box and is panting from exhaustion.  "Cousin!" Balki says worriedly, "Cousin, what . . . were you mugged?"  "Worse!" Larry announces, "I went shopping on Christmas Eve!  Itís a madhouse out there."  In the background we see Mr. Gorpley holding the cup and looking sad as he listens in to their conversation.  Larry opens the box he was carrying and pulls out a pretty pink sweater with a sparkly pattern on it which he holds up for Balki to see.  "This . . . huh?" Larry asks, "What do you think?"  "Well, I donít know," Balki says uncertainly, "I think itís a little busy for you, but . . . . "  Both Larry and Gorpley roll their eyes.  "No, no, itís not for me," Larry explains, "Itís for Jennifer."  "Oh!" Balki realizes, "Well!  In that case itís quietly elegant."  "Cost me $125 but itís worth it," Larry says, "Iím gonna give it to Jennifer at our party tonight.  And just between you and me, I think sheís gonna be thrilled."

"So, youíre uh . . . having a little Christmas party tonight, Ďey Appleton?" Gorpley asks as he walks over to them.  "Party?" Larry asks as he puts the sweater back into the box, "Uh, well no, weíre not having a party.  I wouldnít call it a party as such.  You know, just a few, few people getting together and killing time."  "Iíll have to watch that on Lifestyles of the Rich and Boring," Gorpley quips, then walks back into his office.  "You didnít ask Mr. Gorpley to the party?" Balki asks with surprise.  "No, I didnít ask Mr. Gorpley to the party," Larry answers with no uncertainty.  "Well, why not?" Balki asks, "Heís gonna feel left out."  "He is left out," Larry asserts, "Balki, this is our first annual Christmas party.  I want it to be a time for all our friends to gather together and share an evening filled with Christmas spirit.  If Mr. Gorpley came heíd ruin everything."  "Oh come on, how can you say that?" Balki asks.  "Itís easy," Larry answers, "Heíd ruin everything.  I donít want him at the party!"

Later that evening at the Chronicle, Balki is busy taking down the Christmas decorations.  Mr. Gorpley is on the phone.  As Gorpley speaks to the person on the other end, Balki enters and hears part of his conversation.  "Great news," Gorpley says into the receiver, "Iím free to spend Christmas with you.  What do you mean, so what?  No, I didnít ask my wife but I have a hunch she doesnít want to spend Christmas with me.  Sheís been remarried for two years.  So how Ďbout it?  Can I come over for Christmas?  No.  No, I understand.  No, youíve got family coming over.  Yeah, okay, Iíll try you again next year.  Yeah.  Bye, Mom."  Gorpley hangs up the phone and looks lost and sad.  He sighs as he starts to tighten the belt on his coat.  Balki, having overheard, steps forward, saying, "Mr. Gorpley?"  Mr. Gorpley is startled, then recovers.  "Oh, uh, Bartokomous."

"About tonight," Balki begins, "Cousin Larry and I aaarrr . . . "  Balki chokes on the words, knowing Larry wonít approve.  "Cousin Larry and I arrr....arrrr . . . .  Cousin Larry and I arrrr . . . arrrr . . . arrrr . . . "  "What is the matter, Bartokomous?" Gorpley asks, "You got tinsel caught in your throat?"  "No, I was wondering, do you have a place to go for Christmas Eve?" Balki asks with concern.  "Wha?  Me?" Gorpley asks in an exaggerated manner, "Sam Ďthe Maní Gorpley?  Iíve got invitations running out my ears!  Do I have any place to go for Christmas?  What a laugh!"  Gorpley laughs and Balki joins in.  "Oh boy . . . oh boy, what a relief," Balki sighs, "I tell you, funny funny thing."  "What?" Gorpley asks.  "Well, for a second over there, uh . . . well, I was going to ask you if you wanted to come to our party," Balki begins.  "Okay," Gorpley nods.  "Okay what?" Balki asks.  "Okay, Iíll come to your party," Mr. Gorpley clarifies.  "You will?" Balki asks, smiling to cover his worry.  "Yes!  I will see you tonight," Mr. Gorpley states, "Okay?"  "Okay!" Balki answers as Gorpley walks out, then is happy about it, saying, "Okay!"  He then leans against Larryís desk with worry saying, "Oh . . . kay . . . . "

At the apartment, which is completely decorated for Christmas, Larry is in the kitchen taking some cheese puffs out of the oven.  Larry takes one, fumbling with it a moment because it is hot, then tries a bite.  He chews it carefully, finally setting it down and taking up his clipboard.  "Perfect!" he says in triumph and marks it down on his list.  Balki enters the apartment and stands with his mouth open, deep in thought.  "Okay!" he announces to no one but himself and sets a box down.  Larry runs up to him with his clipboard.  "Balki . . . huh?  Would you look at this?  Is this going to be a perfect Christmas party or what?"  Balki takes off his coat and looks around the apartment.  "Wwowww!" Balki reacts.  "All right, now the guests will be coming any minute," Larry explains, leading Balki to the kitchen counter, "I want you to try the egg nog.  Tell me if itís okay."  He pours a little from a punch bowl into a cup and hands it to Balki, who tastes it.  "Mmmmm!" Balki reacts, "Perfect!"  "It is, isnít it?" Larry asks proudly.

"Cousin, a funny, funny thing happened while I was taking down the decorations at work," Balki begins.  Larry suddenly gasps, saying, "Napkins!"  He picks up a stack of cocktail napkins and takes them to the coffee table where he starts to arrange them.  "Uh, I was . . . it all kind of . . . I was just finishing taking down the decorations for Mr. Gorpley . . . "  "You know, I knew Gorpley was slime but making you work late on Christmas Eve is a new low, even for him!" Larry complains.  Larry gets up and walks to the fireplace with Balki following him.  He reaches down to feel the heat coming from the burning logs.  "What do you think?  What do you think?  Should I add another log?" Larry asks.  He motions for Balki to stand with him with their rears to the fire.  "I mean, here . . . I want people to be warm but I donít want them to sweat," Larry explains.  They swivel their hips in front of the fire, checking the warmth.  Finally they look at one another and agree, "Perfect!"  Larry marks it on his clipboard.

"Balki, it doesnít get any better than this," Larry sighs happily.  "Well, we gotta talk about that," Balki counters.  "What could be better than a party at Christmas with the people you care about?" Larry asks.  Balki holds up a finger and says, "How about this?  How about inviting someone to that party who is less fortunate than you are?"  "Great idea!" Larry says.  "Really?" Balki asks.  Larry flips to the second page of his clipboard and says, "Weíll have to remember to do that next year."  "Well, Cousin, Cousin . . . I took it upon myself to do it this year," Balki explains.  "You did?" Larry asks.  "Yeah!" Balki answers.  "Well, you are incredible!" Larry notes.  "Well, you donít know the half of it!" Balki replies.  Larry crosses out what heís written and asks, "Well, so who is it?  Whereíd you find this unfortunate person?"  "Well . . . " Balki hesitates, "To answer the second question first, um . . . I met him down at the paper."

Balki motions to the Christmas tree and walks over to it, saying, "Beautiful!"  Larry follows Balki, suspicious now.  "Who is it?" Larry repeats.  "You know what?" Balki asks, "This is the best egg nog I have ever have anywhere!"  Balki gets his cup from the counter and finishes it off, holding it to Larry and asking, "Seconds?"  "Who is it?" Larry repeats more firmly.  Balki laughs nervously, then asks, "Who is whom?"  "Who is coming to our party?" Larry asks.  "What party?" Balki asks excitedly.  "The Christmas party," Larry states.  "When?" Balki asks.  "The Christmas party we are having here tonight!" Larry growls.  "Oh, that Christmas party!" Balki exclaims, then asks, "What was the question?"  There is a knock at the door and they both look that direction.  "Oh goodness, that might be Mr. Gorpley now," Balki says worriedly and Larry wheels on him with a look of disbelief.

Act two begins at the same moment, with Larry staring at Balki in disbelief and anger.  There is another knock at the door.  "You invited Mr. Gorpley?" Larry asks angrily, "Are you crazy?  I specifically said I did not want him at the party!"  Larry backs Balki up against the Christmas tree and Balki reaches behind to get two small candy canes, which he holds up to Larry like a cross.  "Well, you also said that you thought the Christmas party would be a time when all your friends would gather around and share the Christmas spirit," Balki points out.  "He is not my friend!" Larry insists.  "Well, he is my friend," Balki counters, "And . . . and . . . itís my party, too, and Iím gonna let him in!"  Balki starts for the door but Larry runs and cuts him off, taking the wreath down from the door and shoving down over Balkiís head so Balki canít move his arms.  "I am not going to let Mr. Gorpley ruin the best Christmas party of all time!" Larry insists.  "Ha!" Balki exclaims, "Let me . . . . "  Larry slaps a hand over Balkiís mouth and pulls him closer, leaning against the door.

"Ja, who is dere?" Larry asks though the door in a Norwegian accent.  "Itís Harriette and Iím ready to party!" Harrietteís voice comes through the door.  "Itís Harriette!" Larry realizes, and he and Balki both say "Oh!"  Larry pulls the wreath off Balki and turns to open the door.  "Come on in!" Larry offers as Hariette, Jimmy and the other gal who was seen earlier at the office enter and they all exchange Merry Christmases.  Balki kisses Harriette and the other woman and almost kisses Jimmy as well but stops in time.  "Everybody just throw your coats off and put your presents down and go help yourself to some egg nog and let us know if thereís too much nog," Balki offers as everyone puts their coats and presents on the couch.  There is another knock at the door and Larry shushes everyone as Balki runs to the door.  Larry is right behind him and throws the wreath over Balkiís head again.  "Cousin, I . . . " Balki begins but Larry slaps his hand over Balkiís mouth again and holds him as he leans to the door.  "Ola!" Larry calls through the door in a Mexican accent, "Who is it?"  "Ramon?" Lydiaís voice calls, "Is that you?"  "Itís Lydia!" Larry realizes, and he and Balki again say "Oh!" and Larry pulls the wreath off Balki and opens the door.

"Lydia, come on in!" Larry offers, grabbing her by the arm and yanking her into the apartment.  "Whoo!" Lydia cries, then feels Larryís muscle, commenting, "Muy macho!"  "Feliz Navidad," Larry laughs in a masculine way.  Larry looks out the door then shuts it as Balki says, "Lydia, Lydia, itís so good to see you.  Come sit down.  Take off your wrap."  He removes her coat to reveal she is wearing a fancy blue and black dress.  "My heavens!" Balki comments, "Sit down."  He sits on the couch with her when there is another knock at the door.  Once again Larry shushes everyone and Balki tries to beat him to the door but Larry throws the wreath over Balkiís head again and grabs him tightly.  "Cousin, would you . . . ?" Balki begins before Larry slaps his hand over Balkiís mouth again and leans to the door.  "And who might that be?" Larry asks with an Irish accent.  "Oh sorry, we must have the wrong apartment," Mary Anneís voice can be heard through the door.  "No, no, no, itís Mary Anne!" Larry realizes.  "Oh!" he and Balki repeat as Larry pulls the wreath off Balki once again and opens the door.  "Oh, and Jennifer, come on in!" Larry offers.  The girls enter with a couple more co-workers.

Once again Larry looks to see if anyone else is coming then closes the door behind them.  At this point Harriette approaches them, asking, "Balki, what is going on?"  "Well, Cousin Larryís having a nervous break dance," Balki explains, "just because I invited someone to the party who is a little less fortunate than we are."  "Oh, real classy, Larry!" Lydia comments snidely.  "Well, thatís very nice, Balki," Harriette offers, "Now whatís this guyís name?"  "Mr. Gorpley," Balki answers.  "Good night, everybody!" Harriette says and there is a mass movement toward the door of everyone except Mary Anne and Jennifer.  "Wait, wait!" Larry cries, blocking the door, "Now just because heís invited doesnít mean we have to let him in!  When he knocks on the door weíll all be quiet and heíll think heís got the wrong apartment."  "I canít believe this," Jennifer notes, "No one can be that bad!"  Everyone speaks at once to tell Jennifer just how horrible Mr. Gorpley is.  "Okay, okay!" Balki cries to quiet the din, "Mr. Gorpley is not popular.  I get that.  And Iím in an okay place about it.  But let me just say this . . . I invited him to this house and when he comes here Iím gonna let him in!"

There is a knock at the door.  Larry shushes everyone earnestly.  "Bartokomous?  Appleton?" Mr. Gorpleyís voice can be heard through the door.  Balki moves to open the front door and everyone grabs him, lifting him off the ground sideways.  Lydia clamps a hand over his mouth.  "I know youíre in there!" Gorpley calls, "This has happened before, you know!"  "This happened last year at Lydiaís birthday party," Harriette says.  "We tried to out-wait him.  We set in the dark for four hours listening to a man pound on the door," Lydia adds.  "It was five hours and I brought a sleeping bag this time!" Gorpley calls.  Everyone looks shocked.  "All right, I guess weíre gonna have to let him in," Larry sighs.  Everyone sets Balki down and stands around sadly.  "Well, now Iím disheveled," Balki sighs, straightening his vest, "Now look, everyone . . . youíre gonna see that Iím right.  Deep down inside Mr. Gorpley there is an ember of the Christmas spirit and if we just treat him with some kindness I think we can fan it into a flame."  "Good, Iíll get the matches," Harriette snips, walking over to the fireplace to lean against it.  Balki walks over to her.  "Harriette, you donít mean that," Balki scolds, "Now look . . . how Ďbout when we open the door we give him a really beautiful ĎMerry Christmas.í  Really good one!"  Balki opens the door and Mr. Gorpley walks in.  "Merry Christmas!" everyone says, some more heartily than others.  "Mmm, how festive," Mr. Gorpley says in an unimpressed voice, "Looks like Kris Kringle threw up all over your living room."  Gorpley laughs as everyone else looks disgusted.

Later that evening the guests are standing around talking and visiting.  Jennifer walks past Larry with a plate of hot buns, giving his arm a pat.  Larry walks over to where Mr. Gorpley is sitting alone on the couch.  "Having a good time, Mr. Gorpley?" Larry asks.  "Mmmm, better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick," Gorpley says sarcastically and laughs.  The door to Balkiís bedroom opens and Balki comes out dressed as Santa Claus.  "Ho ho ho!" Balki laughs, "Merry Christmas!  Itís Balki Claus!"  Balki sits on the couch and everyone gathers around.  "Itís present time!" Balki announces, looking into the sack he is carrying, "Present time!  You must have all been good little boys and girls because Balki Claus has presents for all of you."  Balki pulls a present out of the box and says, "Okay, this one is for Harriette from Lydia."  He hands Harriette the present and encourages her to "Open it!  Open it!" as do the other party guests.  "All right, all right.  Hang on, hang on," Harriette says as she opens the box and takes out a pretty scarf.  "Oh, thank you, Lydia," Harriette offers.  "Oh, real nice, Lydia," Mr. Gorpley says, "Theyíre giving them away at the gas station with every fill up!"  Lydia lunges angrily at Mr. Gorpley but Harriette holds her back.

Balki pulls out another present and says, "This one is to Lydia from Harriette."  He gives her the present, saying, "Open it!  Open it!" as everyone again encourages her to open it as well.  Lydia opens the box and pulls out a book, saying, "Oh, itís the new Nora Trueblood Adams mystery!  I have been dying to read this!"  "I know," Harriette smiles.  "Iíll save you six hundred pages . . . the countess did it," Gorpley says.  "Why donít we see if he can swallow this sideways?" Harriette snarls, grabbing the book and lunging at Mr. Gorpley.  Lydia, Balki and Larry have to hold her off.  "Harriette!  Harriette!" Balki cries, "Sit down, please!  Sit down, please!  This is not Geraldo!"  Balki reaches in the bag again, saying, "Now, let me see here . . . this one is to Jennifer from Mary Anne, your roommate."  He hands the box to Jennifer as everyone says "Open it."  "Wait, wait," Balki says, reaching into the bag again and pulling out a similar box, "Wait . . . this one is to Jennifer from Larry."  He hands her the second box as everyone says to "Open it!"  "Wait, wait, wait," Mary Anne says, "Open mine first!"

Jennifer opens Mary Anneís gift and pulls out a pink sweater, exactly the same as the one Larry has bought for her.  "Oh, Mary Anne this is lovely but it must have cost you a fortune!" Jennifer says.  "It did!" Mary Anne nods, "$29.95!"  "Wow!" Mr. Gorpley gasps, enjoying this, "Iíve seen Ďem for a hundred and a quarter!"  He laughs out loud, then says, "Why donít you open up the present from Appleton?  Iím dying to see what that is!"  Gorpley continues to laugh as Jennifer opens up the box from Larry.  Larry tries to discourage her but she opens the box and pulls out the same sweater, looking embarrassed.  "Oh, gee, thanks Larry," she offers awkwardly, "This is . . . this is . . . really nice.  You know, you just canít have too many of these."  "Yeah, good move, Appleton!" Gorpley laughs, "Boy, I bet you feel like a real jerk!"  Gorpley continues to laugh and Balki gently tries to discourage him, but Larry is fed up.  "All right, thatís it," Larry says, "Youíre outta here!"  Everyone jumps up and grabs Mr. Gorpley as Larry opens the door and they drag him outside.  Balki tries to go after them but is pushed back and has to run around the couch to chase them to the door.  "Now wait a minute!" Balki cries, "Donít you see whatís happening?"  "Yeah!" Larry calls back, "Weíre taking out the trash!"

Balki runs out the door and comes back in carrying Mr. Gorpley over his shoulder and setting him down by the kitchen counter as everyone runs back in after him.  "Come on, give him back!" Larry insists, "Let us have him!"  "Youíve turned into a Christmas mob!" Balki says, standing in front of Mr. Gorpley to protect him.  "Well, heís been asking for it all night!" Larry says.  "And weíre gonna give it to him!" Lydia adds as everyone echoes this sentiment.  "Listen to me," Balki insists, "You donít want to hurt anybody . . . especially on Christmas Eve."  "Oh relax, Bartokomous!" Gorpley interrupts, "These people canít hurt me!  You think by throwing me out of here youíre going to spoil my Christmas?  Hey, Iíve had rotten Christmases before.  Like the one three years ago when my wife said, ĎMerry Christmas!  Iím divorcing you!í  Or how Ďbout that one when I was in high school and I finally met my real father.  And he stuck around . . . long enough to have a drumstick and steal all the money that Iíd saved for college.  Or uh, there was always the one when I was eight and our trailer burned down.  No, no, no, wait a minute, wait a minute, no . . . that was a good Christmas.  I got to sleep in a real bed . . . at the Red Cross.  So donít worry about me getting hurt on Christmas . . . itís not going to happen.  But it wouldnít be Christmas if somebody didnít try.  Happy holidays."

Mr. Gorpley starts to leave but Balki stops him.  "No, now . . . thatís okay, thatís enough.  Come and sit over here."  Balki leads Mr. Gorpley to the couch and encourages him to sit down.  "Come sit down.  We canít let you go, we havenít finished opening the presents."  "Oh, Iím sure you can handle that without me," Mr. Gorpley says, starting to get up.  "No, we canít," Balki assures him, keeping him from leaving, "because . . . because one of the presents is for you."  "Oh, what?  Come on, for me?" Gorpley laughs, "A present?  Get real, Bartokomous."  "I have never been realer," Balki assures him, showing Mr. Gorpley a box and pointing out, "I believe that this is your name on the tag."  "ĎTo Mr. Gorpley: Have a Merry Christmas from your friend, Balki,í" Gorpley reads.  Balki hands Mr. Gorpley the box and says gently, "Open it!  Open it!"  Mr. Gorpley is taken aback but opens the box, pulling out the Davros cup that Balkiís Mama had sent.  "Balki, that was a gift from your Mama," Larry notes.  Balki motions to Larry that itís okay.  "Why are you giving this to me?" Gorpley asks, "I thought it meant a lot to you."  "It does mean a lot to me," Balki answers, "Itís a gift of love and my mother taught me that a gift of love has to go to the one who needs it the most.  And right now thatís you."

"I donít have a gift for you," Gorpley says, handing the cup back to Balki.  "Yes, you do," Balki says, "If youíll take my gift then youíre giving me a gift."  Gorpley slowly takes the cup and looks moved and bewildered.  "Nothing like this has ever happened to me," he explains, "I donít know what to say.  Nobodyís ever given me a gift that meant something before.  I feel, uh . . . kind of strange.  Sort of, uh . . . warm.  Like Iím almost starting to like you people."  "What youíre feeling is the Christmas spirit," Balki explains.  Gorpley looks around at everyone, asking, "Do you feel this every Christmas?"  Everyone nods in answer.  "Except for Balki," Larry adds, "He feels like this every day."  "Merry Christmas, Mr. Gorpley," Harriette offers.  "Merry Christmas, Sam," Lydia adds.  Everyone else offers him a Merry Christmas and Larry sits on the edge of the couch next to him.  "Iím sorry I tried to lock you out, Mr. Gorpley," Larry offers.  "I would have done the same thing in your place," Mr. Gorpley admits, then says, "Uh, M . . . Merry Christmas, Appleton."  "Merry Christmas," Larry offers in return.  Balki begins to sing "Hark the Herald Angels Sing" and everyone joins in, even Mr. Gorpley, as the episode ends.


Script Variations:
There are some differences between the shooting script dated December 1, 1988 and the final version:
In the script the artisan who carved the cup is identified as Davros Paxiteles.  However Bronson pronounces it as Praxiteles in the episode itself.
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When showing the cup, Balki explains "My mama asked Davros to carve this so she could give it to me when I was born.  Davros carves one for the first born in each family."  Harriette notes, "I thought you said you just got it."  "Oh, I did," Balki explains, "Davros is back ordered about twenty-five years.  The big post war baby-boom really threw off his schedule."
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In this script version, Gorpley makes the comment that he's all choked up but Balki does not try to give him the "ham hock" maneuver.
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After Larry explains he went shopping on Christmas Eve he says, "It's a madhouse out there.  A zoo.  People are like animals.  I had to push three old ladies out of the way to get this."
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Gorpley says he'll have to watch for that on "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous" instead of "Lifestyles of the Rich and Boring."
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When Larry says Gorpley will ruin everything if invited to the party, Balki responds, "You really think so?"  "I know so, Balki," Larry answers, "I don't want him at the party.  The man is mean, irritable and hates Christmas."  "Oh, come on, Cousin," Balki counters, "No one hates Christmas."  Gorpley enters from his office and looks at his watch.  "Okay, it's five o'clock.  That means I don't have to put up with this Christmas garbage for another second.  Bartokomous, take down these stupid decorations and do it before you go home."  "Wait a minute, Mr. Gorpley," Larry says, "You're going to make Balki work late on Christmas Eve?"  "Oh, where is my Yuletide spirit?" Gorpley asks, "Bartokomous, you don't have to do that tonight."  "Thank you, Mr. Gorpley," Balki offers.  "Come in and do it tomorrow, on Christmas day," Gorpley says, then to Larry adds, "Happy, now?"
- After saying "Okay" to inviting Mr. Gorpley to the party Balki finishes by saying, "Oh boy."
- As Larry prepares for the party, he first goes to the egg nog and checks his watch.  "Six-fifty, time for the nutmeg."  He adds nutmeg to the egg nog.  He then sniffs and smells the cheese puffs, which he checks as in the aired episode.  He then stops at the window and comments, "The only way it could be better is if it would snow."  It starts to snow and Larry cries happily, "Yes!"
- When Larry asks Balki what he thinks of the decorated apartment, Balki says, "Wow.  Cousin, Andy Williams could do his Christmas special from here."
- After Larry complains that Mr. Gorpley made Balki work late on Christmas Eve, Balki says, "Well, I think he's just misunderstood."  "Yeah, misunderstood by most of the free world," Larry says, "I'm not sure what I'm happier about: This party or not having to listen to Gorpley trash Christmas."  "Go with the party," Balki suggests.
- The commercial break is not written as being when Balki reveals Mr. Gorpley has been invited to the party but rather right after Mr. Gorpley arrives.
- Larry's Mexican accent is described as "a la Jorge Vasquez," which was his pseudonym Larry used when he made an airline reservation to get out of town back in the second season episode Can I Get a Witness?
- Balki tells Harriette that Larry is having "nervous shake down."
- After Larry suggests they don't let Gorpley into the apartment when he arrives, Balki says, "Cousin, I can't let you do that."  "Balki, this is America," Larry says, "The majority rules.  How many want to keep Gorpley out?"  Everyone raises their hands, except Mary Anne and Jennifer.  "I don't think I should vote," Mary Anne says, "I don't know what a Gorpley is."  This is when Jennifer says she can't believe anyone could be that bad.
- Gorpley's line when he enters is "How festive.  Looks like Kris Kringle threw up in here."
- The scene after Gorpley arrives starts with Jimmy and Larry at the door.  "Sorry, Larry," Jimmy says, "I've got to get out of here before I kill him."  "Leaving so soon, Jimmy?" Gorpley asks, "What?  Are you late for your shock treatment?"  Jimmy asks Larry to "Excuse me," before lunging at Gorpley.  Larry has to restrain him.  "Easy, Jimmy.  Easy.  He's not worth going to prison for."  Jimmy composes himself, then says, "He's the reason they should outlaw handguns.  Come on, Allyson."  He and Allyson leave.
- Jennifer enters the room with a tray of hot buns.  Gorpley calls, "Hey, hot buns.  Over here."  Jennifer does a slow burn and brings the tray over to Gorpley.  "Are you talking to me?" Jennifer asks in an offended manner.  "Yeah," Gorpley answers, "Listen, if I told you you had a great body, would you hold it against me?"  Larry arrives and says, "Oh, what do we have here?"  Larry takes a bun from the tray and Jennifer walks away.  Larry leans into Gorpley and says in a low tone, "Lay a hand on her and I'll pull your heart out through your throat."  "Hey, I'm just trying to lighten things up," Gorpley says, "Your party is dying here."  This is when Balki comes out dressed as Balki Claus.
- When Balki starts handing out the presents he first picks one and says, "This is for you, Cory.  From Janet."  Cory opens the present and holds up a fish tie.  "A fish tie," Gorpley says, "Janet must think you're a real geek."  Janet goes for Gorpley but is restrained by the person next to her.
- During Gorpley's speech about his past Christmases, he says, "If these people think they can hurt me, they're dreaming.  Christmas may mean happiness and good cheer to you but it doesn't to me.  If it did, this would be one of my better ones.  Certainly better than the one two years ago, when I opened a present from my wife and found our divorce papers."  The rest of the speech is pretty much the same as what aired.
- After Balki tells Gorpley he has a present, Gorpley tells Balki to "get real" and Balki replies, "I am getting real."  After reading the tag on his present, Gorpley seems confused, and Balki says, "If you're not familiar with the tradition, now is the time you open it."  When Balki explains why he gave Gorpley the cup, he says, "Because it's a gift of love.  And Mama taught me that a gift of love has to go to the one who needs it most.  And I believe you qualify."
- When Larry sits down next to Gorpley he says, "I'm sorry I tried to lock you out."  And then he adds, "And I'm sorry I tried to throw you out."
- There is a final scene after everyone is singing in which the camera is outside the building, looking in.  Balki is looking out at the snow and Larry comes up to him and says, "You did good, Balki."  "Thanks, Cousin," Balki offers, "Merry Christmas."  "Merry Christmas," Larry replies.  This may or may not have been filmed but the set up of the camera outside the window was used for a shot of Balki and Larry watching the snow that was seen after the end credits.
- The 10 second ABC Christmas promo script was also included in the shooting script of this episode.

Continue on to the next episode . . .