Season 5, Episode 15: Whatever Works

The credits: scott bairstow, jennifer aspen, valerie curtin, chad todhunter, anthony tyler quinn, alex hyde-white, and jacob smith as owen, reggie hayes, scott thompson baker, edited by david dworetzky, production designer bill eigenbrodt, director of photography joe pennella, co-producer valerie joseph, producer daniel attias, producer paul marks, supervising producer steven robman, consulting producer p.k. simonds, co-executive producer tammy ader, executive producer ken topolsky, executive producer john romano, written by p.k. simonds, directed by daniel attias

Co-starring Branden Williams as Stu, Larry Raben as Julia's Lawyer, Joshua Preven as Stanford Policeman, Bayani Ison as Internist, Kenn Whitaker as Detention Center Guard, Brandon Michael De Paul as Hughley, Chad Cox as Student #1, Michael Patrick Crane as Student #2.

Transcribed by Rachel

Griffin has come over to Bailey and Sarah's apartment to talk to Bailey, Sarah and Charlie about Julia. Bay can't believe Ned could be hitting her, but Griffin points out that Julia came home acting like they had broken up, with her arm hurt and a bogus story about a car accident. Charlie says he's watched them and all he's seen is that they're in love. Maybe this is more about Griffin being upset about signing the divorce papers. Bay is surprised to hear they are divorcing. Griffin doesn't like saying this. He's concerned for Julia. It's not fun for him to have Bay and Charlie think he's stupid and just can't get over Julia. Charlie remains unconvinced, but Bay wonders if it's possible. Charlie doesn't think so. She's the strongest and the smartest of all of them. Sarah interrupts. It could happen. It does happen. There was a woman in her victims' group that she thought was a counselor. She was professional, well-dressed but she was there because her secretary, a guy she was having an affair with was hitting her. He hit her so much she had to miss the award banquet where she was named the head of her sales division because she had so many bruises she couldn't hide them anymore. Bay says he'll go talk to her, she can hate him if she wants to, but he's going to ask her. Griffin asks them to just talk to her. They'll see.

Julia is sitting on a bench when Ned comes up behind her. She is annoyed that he didn't show up all morning, but he had a good reason. He was planning her Valentine's surprise. She points out that Valentine's is still 48 hours away. He's offering her the super-duper Valentine's weekend. He pulls out a blindfold. She isn't thrilled, but he says no blindfold, no surprise. She agrees, but asks him not to put it on too tight and not to take her through the English department. She works with those people.

Bailey is meeting with Sean Sullivan, his former restaurant adversary. There is a chain of hotels that wants to put a restaurant in each facility, 7 total. They are asking Sean to make a bid for the business and he's asking Bailey because he needs a face to put with the package. Bay is sexy because he's so young and successful. Young plays very well right now. This is the chance of a lifetime. Bay knows that, but they haven't always seen eye to eye. Sean agrees, but he's seen how hard Bailey works and he thinks that maybe a piece of that is worth a piece of this.

Psychiatrist's office
Charlie is meeting with a Dr. Baring to go over Daphne's file. She looks through the police reports and child protective services reports. She asks if an overview was done, but Charlie says there isn't one. Basically Daphne's mother locked her in the basement and took off with her boyfriend. The neighbors started to worry because the lights were left on and her mom had left her alone before. After 3 or 4 days they broke a window and found her there. It was all in the police report. Afterwards she lived with cousins, a grandmother. After 18 months her mom came back. There were some court hearings, parenting classes and then her mom got her back. Charlie asks what this means, if this would explain why she would walk away from her baby. The doctor says that something like this happening to a three year old, it would be surprising if she didn't have some kind of trouble with commitment. They call it primary attachment aversion. This little girl is a classic case.

Bailey and Sarah's apartment
Bailey is explaining the restaurant deal to Sarah as she prepares to head to campus. She's happy for him and wants them to really celebrate that night. Bailey can't because he and Charlie are going to talk to Julia, but they can have lunch. Sarah can't. Bay knows, she has a test, but he's going to drive her to campus so he can drive her home so they can have a ridiculously extravagant lunch at Le Chevre where he's already made reservations. Sarah is pleased, but they still can't do it. Charlie called. He has a doctor's appointment so Bailey needs to pick up Owen. Bailey wonders who he's going to have lunch with.

Le Chevre
Bailey tells Owen to sit up straight while the little boy looks on his plate of caviar with great disdain. Owen wants to know what they are doing there. He needs to be working on his dribble. Bay is supposed to be coaching him. Bailey says it's a special occasion. Owen wants to know why they aren't at Salingers. It's not a special occasion if Bailey has to work. He offers Owen more caviar. Owen compares it to mushed up seaweed. Bay says it doesn't. Owen disagrees. He's had mushed up seaweed and that's exactly what it tastes like. Bailey tries to explain why they are celebrating. Their family has a tradition of being in the food business. Owen interrupts to complain about the mushrooms.

Bowling Alley
Cody and his friends, Stu and Raff, are bowling. Claudia is along and is not very happy to be there. She calls Cody over and reminds him that she can't bowl. He tries to get her to do it, but she points out that they are supposed to be on a date. A date is supposed to be doing what both people want. Cody says that he always has a good time with his friends and he figured if she came with him, they would all have fun. He turns and walks away to the lane.

Charlie is talking to Kirsten about Daphne. He feels really bad. He made her feel so bad about not being a good mother and it wasn't really her fault. All this time there was stuff to explain it. If she saw what was in the file, she might feel better about what she did. Kirsten isn't convinced. She asks if he really thinks this is something he should do. He doesn't know. He always just thought she wasn't cut out to be a mother, but the trouble she had wasn't her, it was something that happened to her. Maybe if she knew why she felt that way, maybe she could get over it. Maybe they could be a family again. Bailey comes in with Owen. It's time for them to go to Stanford. Kirsten seems upset by their conversation.

Julia can't believe that is what her brothers think of her or Ned. Bailey says that Griffin was so sure. She points out that Griffin is jealous. She isn't going to blame him for this, though. They are the ones that are down there asking if her boyfriend beats her. She can't believe that they would do that. Do they want to know what they do every second? How they fight? How they make up? About the sex? While Charlie and Bay are off having babies and managing restaurants, Ned is there for her every second, caring about her and taking care of her. Nobody has done that since their mom and dad died. Maybe instead of insulting Ned, they should be saying thanks.

Kirsten is on the phone with Martha, her lawyer. She doesn't want Paul's money. No, she doesn't have a job, but she will find one. She hopes Martha isn't just concerned about her fee, because she'll figure out a way to pay it. She is on her own so she'll do what she has to do. She just wants to get this part done. She hangs up the phone and goes looking for Charlie. She needs his advice, she needs to find a job. Charlie says he's going to go find Daphne. She won't answer his phone calls and he can't just mail the file to her. Kirsten asks if he can just tell one of her friends, but no. He has to see her, tell her what the doctor said. This is way too intense. Kirsten agrees, if that's what he thinks.

Bailey is meeting with Sean during the practice for Owen's basketball team. Bay interrupts Sean's presentation to do some quick coaching. The coaching is then interrupted by Sean who has Rutledge, the developer, on the line. Bay tries to explain the floor plan over the phone, but Sean thinks they should go downtown and meet with them. Bailey points out he has the practice, but Sean says they are close to closing the deal. They leave.

Front door
Cody comes over to apologize to Claudia. Claudia grudgingly agrees to hear him out. He realizes he didn't plan that well. She's not going to lie to him, it sucked. He agrees that Stu and Raff were jerks. She says that didn't matter how they behaved, he was the one who asked her out. He points out that tomorrow is Valentine's day and brings out a small box. She opens it up. It's a guitar pick on a chain. It is Jimmy Garrison's pick. He used to play with Coltrane. Cody got it from a collector, it doesn't have any papers, but he trusts the guy. Claudia asks him why. He says that nobody ever made him feel the way she did the night before. Embarrassed or whatever and he doesn't know why that is, but maybe he never liked anybody as much as he likes her. She's surprised.

Lawyer's office
Julia is waiting for Griffin. He's late to sign the divorce papers. He finally shows up. She asks why he was so late. He was trying to figure out what to do now that she has her brothers fooled. She asks him to cut it out. She's fine. He doesn't need to worry. He won't. She asks him to just sign the papers and get it over with. All he's done is cost them money. He's not signing anything, so she can send them home. He wants it to stop. If she stops seeing Ned, he'll sign the papers, never see him again. Julia can't believe he's doing this. She asks the lawyer if Griffin can hold it all up. Can't she get divorced without him signing? The lawyer says it's another hearing and she needs to show just cause. Julia says she can show whatever they need. She turns and leaves.

Charlie is packing Diana's things. Kirsten is there. She asks what he's doing. Is he going so he can drop off the file and hope for the best? Is he going to take her to see a doctor? He said he wanted her to come back. Is it about her being Diana's mother or is it more than that? Does he want to be back with her? Charlie asks if Kirsten is mad about something. She just wants to know if he's thought about what he's doing. Showing Daphne that file could really shake her up and not just in the ways he wants it to. He's the one that got Daphne into this position to begin with. He rushed her into making and decision and now look what he's got. This time he should know what he's doing, really think it through before he does it.

Record shop
Claudia comes looking for Cody. She asks the manager to tell him she stopped by. He says Cody isn't coming back. She asks why. It's a store policy. If one of the employees steals something, they get fired. Claudia is surprised to hear that he stole something. He won't call the cops if he gets his pick back.

Strip club
Bailey and Sean are meeting with the hotel developers at a strip joint. Bailey is trying to pitch his idea, but the rest of the group seems more concerned with the entertainment. Bailey asks if they can go somewhere, but the other guys don't want to leave. Rutledge orders Bailey and drink, but he doesn't want it. Sean asks what he's doing. Bailey doesn't want to be in a disgusting place where everybody is getting wrecked. Sean says this is the way they do business.

Ned comes into his dorm room. He's surprised to find Griffin waiting for him. Griffin starts talking about his dad. Ned's a lot better than him. The only person Major Holbrook managed to fool was Griffin's sister. His mom was a lot smarter, she just took off. When Griffin got old enough, he just hit back. Ned tells him he has to leave. Griffin continues. He managed to fool everybody. Justin, her brothers, even her. Again Ned tries to get rid of him. Griffin shoves Ned. He's most upset with the messing with her head. Griffin doesn't care how it works, but Ned isn't going to hurt her anymore. He isn't going to see her anymore. Ned gets up and in Griffin's face. Actually, he is. He's going to see her in about 15 minutes. Griffin says if he does, he's going to get hurt. Ned points out that it's Valentine's Day and like it or not, they are in love. Griffin warns him again. Ned says they are going to play strip poker in her bedroom, they did hearts and flowers the day before. Griffin punches Ned, sending him into this desk, knocking the computer over. He hits Ned again and again, until two guys come in and break the fight up. Ned is badly hurt.

A few minutes later-
Julia comes in as the campus police are interviewing the witnesses. The guys who broke the fight up said they didn't know how it got started, they just came in and found Griffin whaling on Ned. The police ask if Julia needs to talk to Griffin before they take him down. She says no and says they should arrest him. They read Griffin his rights and take him away. Julia starts to cry.

Los Angeles
Daphne comes out of her house when her friend pulls up to pick her up. She looks over and sees Charlie with the baby. He tries to talk to her, explain why he came to see her. She doesn't want to see him or the baby. She asks him if he realizes how hard it was for her to say goodbye. He tries again to tell her what's in the envelope. He put his hotel number on it. She gets in the car and tells her friend to drive away. Charlie throws the envelope into the backseat of the convertible.

Julia is with Ned in the emergency room. There aren't any broken bones, so they are sending him home. His arm is in a sling and he has a cut over his eye that Julia will need to dress. The doctor leaves. Julia tries to apologize. She never thought Griffin was the sort of person who would do something like this, hit someone. Ned asks what that means. She says she doesn't know.

Grant High School
Claudia comes out of the school to find Cody in his truck. She gives him the pick back. He tries to apologize, but she doesn't care. He was supposed to be worth the fight. He asks what fight. The fight with Griffin, to prove that he isn't the same kind of loser that Griffin is. But the thing is that Griffin isn't a loser. He's an amazing person and no one sees how great he is. She wanted Cody to be that too. She walks away.

Bailey is coaching Owen's basketball game. They are down by 3 points. Owen has the ball and dribbles down the court. At this crucial moment Bailey's cell phone rings. He hands it to one of the kids on the bench. It's Sean and he says it's important. Owen has the ball. Bailey ignores the call and encourages Owen to shoot the ball as the buzzer sounds. The basket goes in and they do it...they only lose by one point. Bailey celebrates with Owen and the other kids.

Julia answers the phone. It's Griffin calling from jail. His dad won't help him and he can't remember the name of their family lawyer. He knows that she doesn't want to help him right now, but he doesn't have anybody else. He didn't go there to hurt him, but he wouldn't listen which is no excuse. He doesn't want this to make her forget what Ned did to him. She hangs up on him.

Charlie is feeding Diana when there is a knock at the door. It's Daphne. She asks why he wanted her to know all that stuff. That her mother almost killed her. Is he trying to punish her? Does he think that she would do the same thing to Diana? Charlie says no. He thought that she'd see the what happened to her and it would help with the stuff with Diana. It's not her fault. She asks what he wants her to do. Does he want her to stay away from Diana? Cause that's what she is trying to do. He points out that she can't even trust him because of what happened to her. She's scared that it'll be like it was with her mom, but she can trust her daughter. She'll never leave her. The baby has started to cry so Charlie goes to get her. Daphne walks toward them. Charlie tells her that Diana will never leave, so Daphne doesn't have to leave her first. She turns and runs away.

Charlie picks up the phone, but then sets it back down.

Daphne is in her bed. She is having a nightmare.

Charlie calls the airline for a schedule of the flights to San Francisco.

Daphne sits on the floor looking at the phone. She picks it up and calls.

Charlie hangs up the phone with the airline. It immediately rings and he picks it up, but nobody is there.

Daphne hangs the phone up and disconnects it.

Kirsten sits with a cup of coffee.

Sarah and Bailey's apartment
Sarah and Bay are in bed. She knows he has a meeting with Sean that afternoon, but she can't cover with Owen. Bay tells her that Owen said of all the dads at basketball, he was the best because he's the most like a kid. Sarah is surprised to hear that Owen calls him a dad. Bay glosses over that part, but points out that he is only 20 which is basically still a kid. He's having to decide whether to be a family man or to start a new business. Sarah is surprised to hear there is a decision to be made. She thought this was a chance of a lifetime. He says it is, but maybe a chance of a lifetime means something different to him. His mom and dad dying took a ton away from him, but maybe it also gave him something. It made him grow up really fast and he's getting a shot at things that people get when they are twice his age. If he passes this up, he might get another chance at it later. He goes back to the day before, watching Owen sink that basket and he can't miss that. He doesn't want to.

Griffin is released to Claudia. He tells her she shouldn't be there. She says that somebody had to bail him out and he'll pay her back. He can't believe that he was just trying to get Julia to see the light and now she feels more sorry for the guy. They would all be better if he just stayed locked up. Claudia disagrees. He's like their guardian angel. When Owen is lost or Diana needs ear drops, or she's hooking up with a loser bass player he's there to watch over them.

Julia is dressing Ned's wound. She's going to go get him some food and afterward she'll read to him since his eyes hurt. He tells her she doesn't have to do it, but she says she does. Her husband did this to him and he has to let her do this for him.

Owen is at the restaurant. He looks at the reservation book and asks Bailey what the different colors mean. Bay points out the pink lines and says they are for people who come there a lot so they can give them a free dessert or something. Owen points out that he comes a lot. Bay asks if he likes to come to the restaurant. Owen does. It's fun. Bay tells him that when he grows up if he wants he can run it, be the boss. Owen is amazed. Bay says that his dad gave it to him and he can give it to Owen. Owen asks if he can use different colors in the book. He can do whatever he wants, he's the boss.

Charlie is packing his things, checking his watch. There is a knock at the door. It's Daphne. She has a question for him. She asks if the police report had anything about a marionette. He says there was. When they came down the stairs they saw this thing and thought it was her. She says it was a little blue soldier. Every door she has ever been afraid to go through in her dreams has been guarded by that soldier. She just thought it was a nightmare thing, but it was real. He asks if that makes her feel better. That everything in her dreams was real? Her mom was missing from so many family pictures they told her she was sick. She can still remember the hospital where they told her they took her to visit her mom. Charlie apologizes. What about all the lies she told herself? Why she couldn't keep a boyfriend? Why she hated herself so much she stripped? She would tell herself to buck up, that she had a great family and friends. She starts to cry. She doesn't even know what her life is anymore. She doesn't know a single thing. Charlie tries to comfort her.


It's sweeps. Generally that either means great things or the kind of television that my roommate describes as "designed to make your head explode." That head exploding television isn't always a bad thing, but it isn't always the best for the show. That being said, this episode wasn't head exploding, it was a return to a more classic Party of Five. Okay, maybe there was a little exploding, but I'll get to that later.

Not once but twice did they reference the death of their parents. There were scenes in the restaurant. Bailey and Charlie tried to come to Julia's rescue. I teared up during the last scenes. We were one family dinner away from perfection.

So, let's hit the high points. Ned and Julia. I am willing to start rendering an opinion on this story. I like it. I think they are doing a bang up job and the thing that sold it for me was the very first scene. Griffin went to Charlie and Bailey, people who have Julia's best interest at heart. They didn't believe him. Sarah was the one that opened their eyes to the possibility that something is really wrong. Thank goodness the only remnant of that horrible Albert Terry story was Sarah's experience with the victims' support group. I agree with her point that we can't tell who might be abused. Unfortunately it can happen to far too many people.

That brings us to the head exploding stuff. Griffin smacking Ned around was pretty intense. Interesting that the person (Griffin) who recognizes what is wrong because he has experienced it first hand, would turn to physical assault to prove his point. The thing is, he knows what he has done. His plea for Julia to come help him was sad, but when he was telling her it was wrong for Ned to turn to abuse, why should she forgive him, bail him out? I'm looking forward to seeing how this plays out.

On the one hand we have Julia staying in a bad situation, on the other we have Claudia standing up for herself and not giving in. She sees that Cody is bad news and she cuts him loose. This is a great contrast because her situation is pretty different from Julia. Cody is a guy she's known for 3 or 4 weeks, she has only kissed him and she has a very good self-image. All these things contribute to the reason she is able to put him out of her life.

I'm trying to figure out what is motivating Kirsten. I get her point about trying to get Charlie to figure out what he expects to happen before he goes and drops this huge bomb on Daphne, but I think there is some kind of personal motivation going on here. She's divorcing her husband, she's taking refuge in Charlie's home and I think she's floundering. It would be very easy for her to slot herself back in as a mother to Diana and Owen. The question is, what happens if Daphne comes back?

Speaking of Daphne, I am glad they are exploring the ramifications of the things people do to their children. The writers could have just let things go with Daphne, but instead they are delving further in her past and the things that motivate her behavior. Attachment disorders are a very real thing and it isn't surprising that she has acted the way she has with Diana and Charlie. What might it feel like to discover that there really was a bad thing that made the rest of your life turn out the way you might not have expected? I don't think you have to have a bad thing happen to become a stripper, but I don't think it is unbelievable that Daphne would have turned to such a thing as a result of the abuse by her mother. I'm going to have to go back and watch the Christmas episode. I think this revelation will add a whole new layer of meaning to the scenes with Karen Black.

Finally, Bailey. Now, I think it is fair to say that I watch Party of Five carefully and critically, but I was completely confused about who the guy was that Bailey was doing the business deal with. I had to go consult my own web site to figure out it was Sean Sullivan, the nefarious restaurant developer from several episodes ago. I also couldn't figure out why Bailey was going on the basketball floor during the practice. Is he a coach? What kind of sports hound is he? In high school he played football. In college he tried out for the hockey team (and I would love to know if SFSU even has hockey) but ended up wrestling. Now he's a basketball expert? Whatever. Charlie maybe, but Bailey...he's like 5'4"!

But I digress, I loved the scenes between Bailey and Owen. They have had a special relationship for years and here we get to see that. He is like a father to the little boy. I thought the moment in the restaurant was particularly moving. I was lucky enough to grow up in a family where both of my parents could be around quite a bit. I'm glad to see that Bailey values that and realizes he has a long time to become a restaurant mogul.

And now the nitpick: what they heck day of week was this taking place on? In my world Valentine's Day is on a Sunday this year. There seemed to be a lot of official business taking place on Saturday like Julia and Griffin signing their divorce papers, Charlie meeting with a psychiatrist, Cody meeting Claudia at school, etc.

Thanks to writer P.K. Simonds and director Daniel Attias for a strong beginning to our sweeps. I'm looking forward to this month. Looks like there's going to be some major story going on.

Copyright 1999 by Rachel Vagts. All rights reserved.

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