Parenthood Season 4 Episode 4 – The Talk
Crosby and Jasmine talk to Jabbar about a sensitive issue. Meanwhile, Kristina learns that she needs to look after herself in order to care for her family. Sarah notices there is more to Hank than meets the eyes and Joel tries to be more of a father to Victor.
Be warned! “The Talk” touches on some very sensitive topics.
The episode casually starts with Zeek out in the yard inspecting the sprinkler system. He has basically dragged Camille out of bed to listen to them, insisting that it sounds as if air is escaping somehow. “You need a hobby” Camille tells him.
Julia and Joel approach Victor about how playing sports will get him to be outside and active, as well as a great way to make new friends. They give him a choice: violin lessons or sports. For a young boy, the decision is pretty simple and Victor opts for baseball.
We find Adam and Kristina once again at Dr. Bledsoe’s office discussing the possibility of rescheduling the surgery. Dr. Bledsoe tells Kristina straight out that she needs to start focusing on taking care of herself so she can take care of her family later. She still decides to move the surgery another 3 weeks.
Meanwhile, Crosby is hard at work in the recording booth when Jabbar walks in on a rapper rapping his heart out – a little too crassly for young ears. Jabbar asks Crosby what the “N” word means, leaving Crosby flustered, trying to find the right thing to say.
The problems and difficult situations…
Crobsy tells Jasmine about Jabbar hearing the “N” word (among other bad words) and Jasmine decides that it’s time for her to have “the Talk” with her son. Meanwhile, Sarah finds Hank reading “The Hunger Games” in order to have something to discuss with his daughter, Ruby, when she comes to visit. Sarah is not only surprised to find out that Hank has a daughter, but shocked to see him trying so hard to relate to her. Hank reminisces about the past and opens up about his ex-wife and the challenges that come with being divorced.
As Kristina tries to organize her schedule, Max explains to her that he got all 25 signatures for his petition to bring back the vending machine at his school. Kristina is overwhelmed that her son actually went up and talked with people and is brought to tears when she takes a look at the harsh words written instead of actual signatures.
Zeek decides to bring in Adam to listen to the sprinkler system, which only forces his son (and Camille) to insist that he spend his time volunteering instead of focusing on silly problems. Joel encourages Victor to play baseball signing him up to a team to practice.
Disappointed, Kristina shows Adam the petition list and are disgusted that people have written things such as “Retard” and “Seymore Butts”. Adam feels that Max should no longer run, to which Kristina disagrees. Adam seems to be overly protective whereas Kristina wants to encourage Max rather than putting a stop to it because it will be hard. The conversation shifts when Kristina asks Adam why he was so quiet at the doctor’s office when she rescheduled. He brushes it off, saying it’s her decision either way.
Next, Adam and Kristina talk to Max about waiting until next year to run. Max is insulted that they would try to stop him from running saying “You can’t tell me not to run, that’s facist”. Sarah meets Ruby and notices Hank having a hard time getting close to her. Of course, teenagers will be teenagers (especially teenage girls!), but Sarah tries to engage in conversation and help anyway she can. Zeek volunteers at the VA. Crosby is nervous about “the Talk” he and Jasmine will be having with Jabbar, but Jasmine reassures him that she needs to explain about how life can unfair and yes, sometimes people will be mean.
Zeek meets Ryan York (a potential friend maybe?). They discuss the hardships of war and, on a lighter subject, Zeek is impressed that Ryan may be able to help him with his sprinkler system. At the same time, Joel talks with the other fathers about their boys at the team’s practice. He watches patiently as Victor goes up to bat and misses every single pitch. He’s surprised when Victor throws the bat in frustration and leaves the field saying “Screw this and screw you!” asking Joel why he and Julia forced him into playing sports. Victor plays the “You can’t make me, you’re not my real dad” card which hurts Joel.
Back at the studio, Hank has a disagreement with Ruby about what she should be doing while he’s at a shoot. Ruby suggests staying with Sarah at the studio and Hank gives in, leaving Sarah to watch over his daughter. Crosby tries to approach Adam about the situation with Jabbar only to have him run off after a text message from Kristina. It seems that Kristina feels strongly about letting Max run and feels that they are preventing him from running solely because of her illness. Adam worries that Max might regress if he loses as Kristina struggles with that fact that she delayed the surgery.
Sarah tries to get Ruby’s attention by pretending she doesn’t know what she’s doing with the equipment she’s supposed to be setting up for a shoot. She explains to Ruby how her dad only seems to be really excited when talking about her. It softens Ruby up enough that she opens up to Sarah, telling her that her friends are having a party. Ruby feels embarrassed to tell them what she’s actually doing, so Sarah suggests she tells them that she’s at a photo shoot….with Justin Bieber!
Meanwhile, Crosby and Jasmine sit down with Jabbar to explain and discuss the situation. “Daddy says black people sometimes say it, but I’m not allowed to” he tells his mother. Jasmine has a wonderful way of answering his questions, explaining where the “N” word comes from, telling the history of people, and ending with “We live in pretty good times now”. Crosby sits at the table, in awe of how Jasmine handled the situation and seems moved…and worried at the same time.
Working it all out…
Taking a breather on the floor in the hallways, Crosby goes over the talk in his head. He’s so impressed with Jasmine, feeling that she also opened his eyes to the situation. He feels helpless and worried about Jabbar being hurt or treated differently in the future.
In order to bond more with his daughter, Hank finds himself with Ruby and Sarah, photoshopping Justin Bieber into a picture along side his daughter. She’s thrilled that she won’t look so “lame” to her friends.
Meanwhile, Joel approaches Victor about his behavior at the baseball field. Instead of being too harsh, Joel tells him that he’s proud of him (up until the throwing the bat part) and thinks that he’s brave for going out there and trying something new in front of people he didn’t know. Joel confides in Victor, telling him “I get so excited about you being a part of this family that I forget that everything is so new”. Joel levels with him, saying that he’s still trying to figure out how to be his dad.
Max makes banners and he tells his father that he’s still running because Kristina told him he could. Adam starts to approach Kristina about it when it turns around to him wanting Kristina to have the surgery sooner. Kristina feels bad for putting it off and agrees to change the date back.
Back in the Braverman backyard, Ryan sees the problem with the sprinklers and offers to help. Zeek relates to Ryan about getting home from the war and how difficult it can be coming home as Sarah finds a beautiful photograph that Hank took. She suggests hanging it up, but Hank confesses that it’s hard for him to look at and changes the subject quickly, leaving Sarah wondering what else has gone on in her boss’ life. Zeek heads back to volunteer, saying he has a lot more to offer than making coffee.
Victor offers to play a game of catch with Joel, showing Julia a glimpse of how close their family is getting. You can really feel a sense of pride and love as Joel tosses the ball to his son. Speaking of families getting close, Adam walks in on Max and Kristina preparing for the election and feels that same burst of pride for his son and wife. Realizing the importance of support and not giving up, he generously offers to help.
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