Posted by: billysuperstar | March 26, 2010

Season 1, Episode 3, “The First Day of School”

Finally, Kimmy Gibbler appears onscreen!  After an enticing mention of her as DJ’s friend on the phone in episode 1, we finally get to see her in the flesh!  Her first appearance doesn’t really leave any lasting impressions, but let’s just say that you haven’t seen the last of ol’ Kimmy…

Like the previous episodes, the title of this one pretty much tells you everything you need to know.  That’s right, the girls are getting ready for the first day of school.  At the outset Kimmy and Dj are planning a fruitful year of note passing and saying “ew” about boys, but Stephanie is worried about starting Kindergarten.  All this character-driven angst is interrupted by Joey and Jesse entering the room after apparently smearing poo all over Michelle.

They tell Kimmy to go home and then decide that they’d better give the baby a bath.

While in the tub, Jesse and Joey get to know each other a little better.  It’s never really clear how familiar they were before the series begins, but they clearly hit it off once they move into the house.  Here their relationship deepens as Joey discusses his passion for comedy and Jesse shares his for Elvis.  Joey claims that his pursuit of comedy comes from his desire to make people happy.  I don’t really know how getting all up in everybody’s faces with terrible impressions all the time is supposed to spread joy, but we can at least assume from his conviction that he means well and really doesn’t realize what an annoying fuckhead he is.  Jesse’s adjoining Elvis spiel results in him serenading Joey with “Love Me Tender,” which is such a gay moment that Danny Tanner, the most stereotypically gay dad in the history of television, comes in and makes a bunch of jokes about how gay it is.

I’d like to take a moment to clarify my feelings towards the gayness of Full House.  Gay people are a-ok in my book, and I believe they should be given the same rights and opportunities as anyone else.  When I say Jesse and Joey are acting gay, I’m not saying that they’re lame or stupid, I’m merely making an objective observation that they are appearing as two men would who are in a loving relationship with one another.  All the dads in Full House act really gay a lot of the time, and while I don’t have a problem with it, it’s nearly impossible to evaluate this show without pointing it out from time to time.  What strikes me as most paradoxical is that this show seems to really appeal to good ol’ middle American down home values, and yet at the same time it seems to me to be screaming in support of gay parenting.  If the producers had just bitten the bullet and embraced it’s gay dads premise, it might have done some good to persuade conservatives to ease up on queer rights issues.  Maybe it’s for the best… Much like how decades of over-the-top, in-your-face feminist art and activism have dissuaded a lot of people from identifying with or supporting that particular movement, it’s probable that a show of this quality allying itself with LGBT culture would ultimately be a hindrance.  So in conclusion, although Full House is a really gay program, it’s only in the most superficial and unconstructive way possible.

After Danny is done gaybashing his children’s surrogate fathers, he goes to check on his daughters, who should be sleeping but aren’t because Stephanie is so anxious about school.  There’s a gag about the outfit she’s chosen to wear on her first day, but because the shows aesthetics are so dubious, I can’t even tell what the joke is.  Is she supposed to look stupid, or too fancy, or what?  I have no idea what these characters idea of a good or a bad outfit would be because they pretty much act like they live in a completely different universe than I do.

The next morning Danny greets his kids with, “Chef Boyar-dad made some super great lunches for a super great first day of school.”   After the girls are escorted out the door by a trio of singing dads, Stephanie quickly reenters the scene and declares that she’s not going to school.  With that, there is a musical note and then a commercial break, ensuring us that this is a really big deal.  What, you’re just gonna decide not to go to school?  Who gets away with that?

Rather than telling her to quit fucking around and walk her ass to the school bus, the dads totally coddle her, which can only contribute to this bullshit behavior.  Stephanie makes a sad face and expresses her concern that she won’t have any friends, which results in the first time the audience goes, “aww.”  Danny declares that he’ll go down to the school with her so she won’t be by herself, and then Jesse gives a speech about first times:  When he was 14 he fucked some college girl at the drive-in.  I’m not even making that up.  There are actually some pretty racy jokes in these early episodes…

Danny’s futile attempt to pep-talk Stephanie down at the Kindergarten is interrupted when Michelle takes an enormous shit in her diaper.  Thankfully Jesse is waiting in the classroom, where he happened to stop by on the way to his job as an exterminator.  His brilliant plan is to totally disrupt the class and then give away all the milk in an attempt to bribe the other kids into befriending her.

When that doesn’t work he approaches a little girl in just about the creepiest way possible, which inevitably results in her shouting “stranger!” and blowing into her rape whistle.  Soon Joey enters the classroom and creates an incredible disruption of his own with an impromptu game of duck duck goose.  It never ceases to amaze me how many of the jokes on this show revolve around the main characters being really pushy and totally inconsiderate towards everyone who isn’t in their immediate family.   At this point the teacher is pretty fed up with all these strange men barging into her classroom and acting like they own the place, which cues Danny’s entrance.  His visit is cut short when Joey spots DJ, who just happens to be climbing the fence to escape school grounds at that precise place and time.

DJ is lambing it because she’s upset about being put in the smart class, which she refers to as “Geekville USA.”  She’s been separated from Kimmy and is worried about making new friends, which conveniently coincides with Stephanie’s storyline.  So Danny gives DJ a pep-talk about confronting her fears and then DJ gives Stephanie the same pep-talk and then they both go to class.  Surprisingly, the music never comes on, but even more surprisingly, no one ever tells these girls that they have to go to school because it’s the fucking law.

Firsts:  The audience goes, “aww.” Jesse’s job as an exterminator.

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