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'The Goldbergs' recap: Parlez-vous Barry?

Season 1 | Ep. 19 | “The President’s Fitness Test” | Aired Apr 1, 2014

Adam faces one of his biggest challenges yet: The Presidential Fitness Test. If he can’t do a pull-up, he’s going to be hanging (literally) with the girls. Beverly promises to get him out of it, but Dad says no: “It’s a rite of passage! You can’t get out of a rite of passage with a note from your mom!”

Beverly will write a note.

A visit from Erica’s French pen pal Fanny throws the household into an uproar. Murray has to wear pants, Barry primes himself to make his move, Beverly bakes!

Faced with Bev’s note, Coach Miller asks Adam what the kids in Red Dawn would do if they didn’t have the upper-body strength to defeat “the Ruskies,” then he sets Adam up to receive an ass-whoopin’ from every member of his phys-ed class.

The Goldbergs s1, ep 19: Fanny, Erica, BarryErica introduces Barry to Fanny and provides him with the pick-up-line flashcards he requested, except, of course, the French phrases she encourages him to read include sentences like “I am sexually attracted to Gary Coleman” and “Cat farts.”

Coach Miller confronts the Goldbergs. Bev ‘fesses up to writing the note. Coach Miller invokes the president. Bev vows to get a note of pardon from the president. And so her quest begins. She starts at the state comptroller’s office and is redirected to a state assemblyman in a nefarious act of retribution by the comptroller.

Barry introduces Fanny to Pop Tarts: “In A-mer-i-ca, we eat our fruit in bread,” he booms. Then he raps Erica’s translation of his song “The Bed” much to his embarrassment when Pops — who helped liberate France in the war — reveals that Barry’s sister has changed the lyrics so that he is singing about peeing in his bed. It’s a touching moment when Barry expresses that he is sincerely hurt, and Erica sincerely feels guilty.

Adam waits for President Reagan to answer his plea for a pardon to get out of the fitness test. Murray confesses that he had a swimming problem when he was younger: “You don’t have to be the best; you just gotta try.” Adam asks for his help with his pull-ups. Cue Rocky III theme song “Eye of the Tiger”! But just as they get to work, Bev bursts in with a letter of pardon with the Presidential Seal on it. Adam jumps on it.

After Fanny departs, Erica convinces Barry that Fanny left a note saying how swell it would be if he visits her the next time he’s in Paris. Pops realizes Erica has lied again, but knows she means well. Unfortunately, her actions send Barry dashing for the airport to stop Fanny’s plane. He terrifies Fanny at the airport and mistakes her Continental kisses for something more meaningful, but graciously lets her go so that he may pursue his rap career in the States.

The Goldbergs s1, ep19: Adam takes the fitness testMurray joins Adam at gym class and convinces him that he should take the test. In the end, Adam successfully completes a pull-up and teaches his dad to swim.

’80s music watch (in which I note the show’s aural indulgences): Survivor, “Eye of the Tiger”

The Goldbergs airs Tuesdays on ABC at 9/8 C

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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