My father taught me a poem when I was a kid, you wanna hear it?
Episode 306: My Cheatin’ Heart

Note: Though this is the 7th Season Three HM episode in airing order, by production number it is the 6th episode of season three (hence 306).

Though it isn’t really necessary to see the whole Dad saga, you’ll probably want to see 113 – Brendon’s Choice before you see this one so the episode isn’t ruined for you.

Cast:
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
Andrew – Louis C.K.
Andrew’s Client – Bill Braudis

I don't say this very often, but you're a terrible golfer.

Synopsis: Brendon takes up golfing, at Andrew's insistance. Unfortunately, he's terrible at it, and is forced to look at McGuirk for a new way of winning. Brendon's new movie, which is to be filmed backwards, doesn't help matters. Meanwhile, Paula can't find a foot.

Lawn Gnomes: (Click for picture)
· There is a dressed up lawn gnome on the table during the second discussion about the backwards movie.

We shoot the movie backwards!

Brendon’s Filmography:
· “An Affair To End With” – A basic storyline of a husband having an affair with his wife’s twin sister, except done backwards.

The Movie-Episode Connection:
· The movie focuses on a cheating husband (with a crazy father involved as well), while Brendon cheats to impress his own father.

The Plotline Connection: (TheJazzFighter)
· In season one style, Brendon had the only real plotline, and that was his golf game. The movie doesn't connect all that well.

Just go!

Random Observations & Facts:
· Brendon’s script originally was “The Affair”. Brendon crossed out the word “The” and added the words “An” and “To End With”.
· The golf guy drinks “Black Hole Hard Lemonade”
· Paula goes to “Pediatrician Dr. Roberts, M.D.”
· Patient problems at Dr. Robert’s: Bloody finger, bandaged head, drooling
· Paula’s trouble comes from the “Baby Fun-Time Quiz Book”
· Brendon goes to “Jamie’s Driving Range open daily 5 a.m. – 10 p.m.”
· McGuirk still has the golf clubs he took from his opponent after he beat him back in high school.
· Brendon has gotten a little better at golf between the driving range and the game. At least now he can actually hit the ball a good distance.
· Jason’s camouflage costume includes a sash of candy bars.
· Brendon hits the ball 9 times on the green.
· The foot in the puzzle book is incredibly easy to find. I suppose that's the joke, but really.

I found the foot!

Past Episode References:
· The costume/prop corner from Episode 302 – Breaking Up Is Hard To Do appears once again in this episode. Check that capsule for all the references made.

I choked. But not in the way you think. I choked my opponent.

Movie & Other References:
· Movie posters behind Brendon:
“Plump Fashion” (Pulp Fiction)
“Reservoir Cats” (Reservoir Dogs)
· McGuirk as a caddy is (intentionally) a parody of “The Legend of Bagger Vance”.
· "Memento" is both mentioned, and the general backwards idea is easily connected.

This isn't very comfortable.

End Credits: “Season Three Theme”

Reviews: WARNING: Spoilers

Spectre: This episode was many times better than last week's episode, I must say. The uses of odd humor in a subtle fashion really works.

And it was fun picking out all of the film references. This episode was mainly picking at the new wave of independant films with "clever" storylines and such ("Memento" being the main one). And the golf subplot was actually funny, really. I love McGuirk, and loved him even more when he came in with the sun shining behind him and then told everyone it made his entrance better. How better can it get, seriously?

This season of HM is on a roll. Never have I seen such a consistant rate of high quality episodes. A+

J-Chan: I remember loving McGuirk to death, especially with the sun bit, and I remember laughing really hard when my sister misheard "I've been cheating all day" as "I've been cheating on me" but other than that I just remember funny. I need to watch again.

J.C.: Loved this episode! The golfing plot was what sold me on it, but the thing with filming a movie from end to begining was funny too. Especially liked Melissa's line to Brendan about him always saying he'll "fix it in post". McGuirks bit about the sun was funny, even though it reminded me of a familiar line in an episode of Grace Under Fire. Definatly one of my top five favorite episodes so far of this awesome show.
Grade: A+

The Condiment King: The episode starts with the end and then tells the story of how it got there. The ending really isn't dynamic enough to where it makes or breaks the episode, which is good because the episode was quality on its own.

I really like Jason's discussion of directors and how it was a pretty hack-kneed device to do what Brendon was doing by starting with the ending. Jason has always been the pretentious critic in this series, like when he called the fisheye lens a hack-kneed device.

There were a ton of references in this episode, weren't there? There was the Plump Fashion (Pulp Fiction) and Reservoir Cats (Reservoir Dogs) posters where Brendon, Melissa, and Jason were discussing the story. The golf tutor mentioned Memento and Sunset Boulevard. Melissa referenced Cast Away with the soccer ball having wilson on it. The creators of this series truly do have good taste in movies, which has been echoed through the references.

I too liked McGuirk's expression when he was letting the air out of the soccer balls and said he was "leveling the playing field". He also had a great line where he was hit by the golf ball and then screamed, "SON OF A *****! I'M TRYING TO HELP A KID." It comes so out of nowhere too that its hilarious. I really like McGuirk's incessant accent as Bagger McGuirk in this episode too. He waited until the sun was down at just the right level to where he achieved that effect when he came. Ridiculous. He gets to be unbearable for Andrew and Brendon. It was nice that Andrew ended up cheating just like his son, Brendon. It showed just how similar they are. Good episode. ****

Mynd Hed: LOVED the Memento spoof, I haven't seen The Legend of Bagger Vance so that whole Bagger McGuirk thing kind of flew right over my head. Overall, pretty good episode.
B-

StrangerAtaru: Every once in a while, even among what could be a good episode of this show, it loses some steam somewhere and seems to fall flat at the end after a promising beginning. This just is one of those episode...but the strange thing is that because of the idea of this episode, we actually see the end at the beginning! The episode literally begins with the end of the episode, which is hilarious in that we feel so out of it even before we find out what exactly is happening. (Brendon and Andrew playing golf? McGurk reciting a poem? Paula going crazy over a "Seek and Find" game?) It is then that the episode rewinds to the real beginning, where we find Brendon, most likely influenced by "Memento", wanting to film an entire film backwards! The conversations that he has about his ambitious idea are some of the funniest in the episode, with Jason constantly calling him a hack without any originality and even a golf instructor he has to go to (which I will get to later) giving him various film ideas involving film placement. (including a film which starts at the beginning, then goes to the end, and ends at the middle!) The actual film itself, "An Affair to End With", is your typical romantic drama only, according to Melissa, "it's backwards". (it probably would have made more sense forwards, but the backwards effect did allow for more of the anticipation of later things) While it doesn't make the film better, you better at least give Brendon the A for effort.

The other major plot here involved Brendon and Andrew getting involved in golf, yet neither being too good at it. The conversation at the beginning between the two of them is another of those good father-son moments where Andrew is trying to show Brendon the positive aspects of the game, while Brendon just proves how much he sucks at it. The practice session he has later with a tutor doesn't do much either except teach Brendon why they use pencils in the game! (well isn't it obvious?) When Brendon approaches McGurk about his problems, we see a situation that seems promising, yet ends up ruining the episode: the "leveling the playing field" idea. (which we see McGurk deflating soccer balls, yet his team still loses) While it is funny in seeing McGurk trying to coach Brendon at golf, even if it only involves tipping the hat, it is where he decides to "level the playing field" in a game against a potential client of Andrew's that the episode falls apart. It is here that essentially we see the whole cliche of the good golf players vs. the people who cheat using someone else on the field in order to seem better. (in this case, Jason and Melissa in fatigues) While the game itself, as well as the interaction with the other characters, isn't that good in itself, it is sort of funny watching McGurk running around in a takeoff of "Bagger Vance". By the time we see the end of the episode a second time, while we may now understand what caused all this, it just doesn't seem as funny as it was before. And even more mysterious about the ending was the sudden appearance of Paula: while it was funny watching her try to solve the "Seek and Find" throughout the episode, her sudden appearance at the end on the golf course was mysterious and somewhat pointless. I guess I was hoping a for a bit more in this episode, but I guess this episode doesn't go for the birdie...or the bogey for that matter. Most likely par for the show.

The Landstander: This isn't a great episode in some ways, but I still find that I really enjoyed it. It has an underplayed feeling to it that really works.

Though perhaps not intentional, the fact that Andrew only appears in this episode during season 3 (or 4, for that matter) is oddly appropiate. His relationship with Brendon seems to be akin to occasional days together; that they would take up golf is appropiate. Brendon's complete lack of skill is, a bit less subtly, appropiate as well. And McGuirk helping Brendon deal (albeit in his own, unusual way) with his real father is...appropiate.

Then there is the movie, which provides some nice material for Jason and Melissa. Putting the actual ending of the episode at the beginning was bizarre, but also kind of funny; putting the ending into context slowly is fun. The movie itself works on just about every level; Brendon's desperate seeking of approval (even going to a golf instructor he doesn't really know), fighting against Jason and Melissa for a stubborn idea, and the great backwards sequence in the middle of the episode/movie. Though, on that note (maybe I've just watched this show too much), couldn't a video of two 8-year olds (one shirtless) shooting a movie about an affair be considered a bit....yeah. I'll move on.

Oh, and Paula's foot storyline is fairly funny, but not too notable. But what the hell was she doing at the golf course, anyway? I assume picking Brendon up.

For all my raving this isn't quite a great episode, it just works rather well all around. Recommended.

Sorry, I needed to wait for the sun to be in the right position to get that effect...