Pre-Credits Gag: As Michelle struggles to fall asleep before her first day of kindergarten, she is confronted by the most terrifying image the human mind could possibly conjure up: the grinning visage of Joey as he stands expectantly in her darkened doorway. Am I the only one who’s been haunted by this exact scenario in a thousand recurring nightmares? Joey decides to try to lull her to sleep by improvising a blues song on his harmonica, which results in her running downstairs to eat some milk and cookies. And does Joey stop her? Of course not. And so begins Season 5.
Jesse returns home from his summer tour at 3 am and runs up the stairs, loudly announcing his arrival to the denizens of the full house. Everyone’s pretty annoyed that he’s woken them up and fail to conjure up an enthusiastic greeting, which is a rare instance in which someone’s pushy, inconsiderate behavior is met with anything resembling a realistic response. Unperturbed, he decides to head up to his attic apartment to bother his wife instead.
Upon greeting Aunt Becky, Jesse makes several tactless remarks about how visibly pregnant she’s become. This episode is supposed to take place about 3 months after the finale of Season 4, but Becky clearly appears to be in her third trimester. To be fair, I doubt that any of the show’s creators even knew where babies came from in the first place, so how should they be expected to understand the rules of gestation? For some reason, Aunt Becky isn’t bothered by Jesse waking her up at 3 am and telling her that she looks enormous and instead cheerfully suggests that he read a book about raising a child, which he begins to do that very minute. Doesn’t she have to get up for work in like 3 hours?
In the morning, DJ comes downstairs and asks Danny to evaluate the outfit she’s chosen for her first day of high school. After some prodding, he tells her that she looks “sexy,” which is almost as disturbing as the image of Joey standing in Michelle’s doorway.
Jesse and Becky come downstairs and he makes several more insensitive remarks about her size. She finally asks him to stop being such an unbelievable asshole and he readily retorts with some information he acquired from reading that baby-raising book. Apparently the baby can pick up on everything happening around it, so it’s necessary for her to mask her contempt for Jesse’s (and everyone else’s) constant antagonizing behavior. He then immediately puts this new strategy for getting away with being the world’s worst husband to work by insisting that she constantly funnel Elvis recordings directly into her uterus. Then, as if all that wasn’t infuriating enough, he starts pressuring her into finding out the baby’s gender, which she protests by saying that he’d promised earlier to respect her wishes to wait until the baby was born. Oh, man, this is pretty intense. Just when I thought that these characters’ distressingly offensive behavior had plateaued, they had to go and force that shit onto a pregnant woman. I guess I have to at least credit the creators with finding a way to step their game up this far into the series.
Joey enters the girls’ room to make sure they’re prepared for their first day of school. Stephanie expresses her excitement for 4th grade, which is primarily because she wants to bang her new male teacher. Michelle confides in Joey that she’s worried about the other kids not liking her so he tries to console her by offering some terrible advice about how doing a shitty impression of Bullwinkle will win people over.
A rarely used on-location shot shows us Stephanie and Michelle’s school as Danny and Joey drop them off. Michelle continues to express her concerns over starting kindergarten throughout the scene and I almost expected them to cave in and let her do whatever she wants like they have in every other circumstance in the entire series, but they actually stick to their guns. The dads walk Michelle to her class and as they meet her teacher they really do seem an awful lot like a gay couple. Danny doesn’t provide any context whatsoever as to who Joey is and even has his arm around him when they exit. Anyway, before he leaves, Joey reminds Michelle to talk like an annoying asshole as a way to make friends but then, inevitably, the first kid she tries this out on thinks she’s a fucking weirdo. Seriously, what’d she think was gonna happen? By this point, anyone who takes advice from Joey should blame themselves for what happens afterwards.
Incidentally, that kid is Teddy, who will become a recurring character. They don’t say his name or anything but I’ve seen enough of him in reruns to remember who he is. Also, I just realized that Michelle’s concerns over making friends is contingent on none of her preschool classmates being in her kindergarten class, which seems pretty unlikely. It’s not like she changed school districts or anything. I definitely remember Aaron Bailey, who was all up in her preschool, coming back later on, so where is he right now? I know that bringing him back now would undermine the premise of the episode and everything but, fuck that, you can’t have it both ways.
So, get this: Michelle decides that kindergarten’s too tough for her and just straight up walks out of the room and wanders down the hall. I know that she’s gotten away with wandering around the full house unsupervised for as long as she’s been able to walk, but this is a certified public institution. What kind of school are they running here? There’s not even a goddamn hall monitor!
Even at the doctor’s office, Jesse continues to make dickhead remarks about how big and fat Becky is. You’d think the doctor would tell him to take his ass out to the waiting room, but she just humors him as he steps over his wife’s wish to wait until the baby is born to find out its gender. After a lot of prodding and interrupting, the doctor reveals that they’re actually having twins, which is a source of excitement for Becky and anxiety for Jesse.
Meanwhile, in Stephanie’s 4th grade classroom, she desperately tries to impress her teacher by being a big annoying know-it-all. As if one tactless Tanner wasn’t disruptive enough, Michelle enters the room and straight-up crawls across the floor to try to get Stephanie’s attention. Rather than booting Michelle out for disturbing his class, Stephanie’s teacher merely inquires as to what she’s doing there. Michelle loudly blurts out Stephanie’s earlier comments about what a hot piece of ass her teacher is and then, in a masterfully manic-depressive move, abruptly switches to a hideous pouty face to incite sympathy towards her feelings of not fitting in during the first 5 seconds of kindergarten. Stephanie’s teacher gives her permission to escort Michelle back to class, which is very likely a ploy to get these two loud-mouthed broads out of his classroom for a few minutes so he can finally do his fucking job.
Upon Stephanie and Michelle’s entrance into the kindergarten classroom, the teacher’s like, “oh, there you are!” Dang, maybe all that propaganda about teachers being handed tenure too easily has some truth to it after all. Michelle’s teacher then sits passively as Stephanie tries to get Michelle’s classmates to like her by putting the hard-sell on that idiotic Bullwinkle impression. Sadly, a bunch of 5 year-olds aren’t exactly a tough crowd, especially when it comes to anything that provides a distraction from educational classroom activities, and so the group is successfully brainwashed into tolerating Michelle.
Back at the full house, Danny demonstrates to Joey that he’s taught the dog to put its bowl in the sink after eating, which is just the latest in a lengthy string of examples that he’s totally obsessive compulsive about cleanliness. Jesse comes home in a daze, as he’s still pretty shaken up at the prospect of being a father to twins. As Danny tries to console him, Jesse begins to hallucinate that Danny has an evil twin named Manny Tanner, who dresses like Larry from Three’s Company. Jesse then turns to Joey for help with his broken psyche but finds that he, too, has an evil doppelganger, who talks like a lame impression of Joe Pesci. I’m not really sure what the purpose of this scene is supposed to be other than that it’s probably not that expensive to superimpose a double of the same actor in a shot. Is Jesse concerned that having twins will inevitably mean that one of them will be evil? I guess that’s a more reasonable concern for him to harbor than the added responsibility of raising an additional child, as it’s not like anyone expects him to pay for anything or have any parenting skills whatsoever.
Later, Jesse expresses his insecurities to Michelle and asks her to keep them a secret because he doesn’t want to tarnish the family’s view of him as someone who’s so together and in control. Finally, someone says something funny! Naturally, Michelle completely ignores Jesse’s request for confidentiality and calls out to Stephanie for guidance, who calls for DJ, who calls for the rest of the family. The family all gather together in the living room and then the music comes on as Jesse reveals his insecurities. His pregnant wife consoles him, although I think she’s the one that deserves consoling seeing as how she has to carry two babies and her husband all at the same time.
Danny drops some knowledge about the joys of parenthood and then Jesse decides that the constant involvement of his large, pushy, self-centered family will provide enough support so that he can continue to neglect any adult responsibilities whatsoever.
That’s it for the premier of Season 5! I died inside just a little during that one week I took off from writing Full House reviews, and then again when I got back to it. Thanks and blame go out to FHR superfan Tiffiana for buying me the Season 5 DVDs!