Episode 113: Brendon’s Choice
Sense of Continuity Note: Make sure you see this
episode before you see Episode 207, 208, 212, 213 or 307.
Brendon Small – Brendon Small
Jason Penopolis/Coach Jon McGuirk – H. Jon Benjamin
Melissa Robbins – Melissa Bardin Galsky
Paula Small – Janine Ditullo
Josie Small – Loren Bouchard
Dixie Smithley – Amy Roeder
Principal Plum – Paula Plum
Erik – Jonathan Katz
Dr. Fizzel – Mitch Hedberg
Synopsis: Brendon wins the "Young Filmmaker of the Year"
award, which prompts an interview from TV personality Dixie Smithley.
The interview opens up issues involving Brendon's father. McGuirk's
own problems are dealt with when he is forced to take an anger management
· This is the season one finale.
· This is the last episode made in Squigglevision.
· This is the last time Mitch Hedberg appears on Home Movies.
· Brendon Small brought the father 'arc' into focus for the first
time in this episode, as he considers it to be a major part of the
· It's also odd that the father storyline would be introduced now,
as the show's future was uncertain at this point. It might've been
a cliffhanger that would never be resolved.
· None, oddly enough.
· “Fat Her” – An unfaithful journalist’s life is changed forever when
he makes a story that could bring down the most powerful man in the
free world. Also, he has an affair and his mistress tries to kill
him. And archaeologists.
· *“Mistaken for a Princess” – The daughter of a self-serve gas station
attendant ends up being mistaken for a princess by a bunch of inept,
over-the-hill mobsters who are trying to get enough money together
so they can buy a struggling minor league baseball team and retire.
The Movie-Episode Connection:
· It seems, in both obvious and not so obvious terms, that Brendon's
recent movies have the theme of his father running through them. "Fat
Her", beyond the name, involves a toy that reminds Jason's character
of his father, has dinosaurs leaving their children behind, infidelity,
and a scared journalist in the middle of everything.
The Plotline Connection: (TheJazzFighter)
· No strong connections in this one.
· (Landstander) I disagree! Both Brendon and McGuirk are forced to
deal with some repressed feelings. McGuirk's is a lot more direct,
as he's forced to take anger management, but Brendon is more subtle,
as he decides he has to deal with his father and his role in his life.
It's also interesting how McGuirk mentions how he hates (among other
things) his mother; there's a certain symmetry in that.
Random Observations & Facts:
· Another kid can be seen on set during “Titanic 2”.
· Dwayne and Paula’s mother are in the audience for the award presentation.
Also seen are Mr. Lynch and Walter & Perry.
· The channel one news logo is a hand with the index finger extended.
· Principal Plum is in the stands when McGuirk doesn’t flip out on
the crazy old man.
· Crazy Old Man spells bum “Bem”.
· Ending Soccer Score: 0-6 Visitors.
· Dixie Smithley is obviously reading from cue cards.
Movie & Other References
· McGuirk hides in the back of Crazy Old Man’s car, and pops up while
he’s driving. I know I’ve seen that several times before.
· The sequence with the zebra with peanut butter on its teeth and
Jason in a trenchcoat pays homage to "All The President's Men",
namley the Deep Throat scenes.
· In her "story" on the trio, Dixie makes a reference to
"the next Steven Spielberg, Jodie Foster, or Ed Wood." Either
she doesn't know her directors, or she really wasn't that impressed
with the kids! Ed Wood, director of such sci-fi disasters as "Plan
Nine From Outer Space", is regarded as the worst director in
movie history. (thanks to Allyson for this, I forgot to mention that)
· In episode 113: Brendon's Choice, the title is a reference to the
movie Sophie's Choice. Also, comedian/actor David Cross plays the
person in line at the convenient store whom Coach McGuirk fights with.
(thanks to stiff)
End Credits: “Brendon’s Choice End Theme” (Great song, BTW)
Reviews: WARNING: Spoilers
The Condiment King:
This is the best season finale of the series and one of my favorite
season finales period. I'm a sucker for cliffhanger endings and this
episode had a great one with Brendon about to pick up the phone to
talk to his dad for the first time. Great abrupt ending with "Brendon's
Choice Theme" playing in the background as the credits roll.
Great lead-in for the next season.
Coach McGuirk's subplot was great in this one, obvious that he would
have anger management issues. There's just something about his facial
expressions while he listens to the diatribe about him having to go
to anger management and then he breaks the pen. Its just hilarious.
Then, of course, you have the heckler in the stands. The anger management
guy wasn't as great as the therapist in Season 2, but he was serviceable
enough for Coach McGuirk and the rest of them to hate him. Funny,
The Trixie plot is pretty interesting. I love how she sees all this
symbolism and meaning behind Brendon's movies and he doesn't see it
himself or he doesn't put it there on purpose. "Uh, sure.."
Then, of course, you have all the footage they shot, all the interviews
that were conducted, for her one little summary of the story behind
a picture of Jason in drag. Ridiculous.
What really makes the introduction of Brendon's father work in the
series is how it hasn't been mentioned at all to this point and it
steadily builds up as the episode continues, such as with Brendon
being speechless when Trixie mentions his father in the interview
or how Brendon becomes anxious about whenever a phone rings. I especially
like when Brendon catches where he put in Jason's dialogue that the
zebra "reminded him of his father" and he rewinds it back
over and over again, drilling it in his head. The only other time
to this point that I caught Brendon's father mentioned was Jason talking
to Melissa about the trenchcoat he was using for Dwayne's Franz Kafka
Rock Opera in "Director's Cut". This is the first tangible
significant continuity of the show and it really ties together the
season nicely. *****
StrangerAtaru: I don't
know if it is just me or something, but considering how much comedy
goes into this show, a dramatic episode can be somewhat strange to
watch. Unfortunately, the basis of the drama (Brendon realizes that
he doesn't really know about his father during interviews for a movie
he gets an award for) gets somewhat lost with the interviews. The
lady who interviewed Brendon, Jason and Melissa either asked too many
questions or too few questions to them, leading pretty much nowhere
and of course to the crappy 30-second segment they do get on the news.
But while Brendon's situation did eventually get depressing, at least
Jason's was just weird enough to be funny. (the part about "a woman
who can't conceive who is pregnant" gets me every time) Luckily, there
was the subplot about McGuirk’s psych-therapy to fall back on. The
actual sessions were funny in themselves (especially about how this
guy who calls himself a therapist can't help anyone in the class),
but the bits involving McGuirk staying calm while being harassed by
other people did get annoying after a while. (but the revenge scene
at the end against the guy from the soccer game was classic, making
the whole thing worth it) Overall, a half and half ending to the Squigglevision/Retro
scripting era, but at least it has one of the best end-themes in the
The Landstander: I
think upon first seeing this episode it can seem a bit off, given
how the father aspects of the show haven't been introduced until now.
Considering the entire arc of the series, it's really well done in
hindsight. The Dixie Smithley storyline is kind of forgetable by itself,
and it serves more to work an excuse for the father storyline to pop
Before that, there's McGuirk trying to control his anger. The more
comedic storyline here, but still has a nice connection to Brendon,
as it shows they both have some serious issues. Mitch Hedberg, a great
comedian whose voice and style fit the show perfectly, sadly gives
his last voice job here as the perhaps-too-mellow Dr. Fizzel.
The symbolism in Brendon's movies, even when its obvious, gives a
nice new dimension to the show. The idea of Brendon using his movies
to play with his reality has been used since episode 2, but this is
the first time when it really plays out as something legitimate. All
the themes are there; the Deep Throat character has a toy that reminds
him of his father, dinosaurs leave their children behind, there's
an infidelity storyline, and a Brendon's generally scared, confused
character is in the middle of everything. The episode still has some
funny moments (namely in McGuirk's scenes), but this is much more
focused on character development. On a purely comedic level this is
only alright, but it works a lot more on a much more interesting level.