Full House (1987–1995)
3 user 1 critic

The Last Dance 

During his visit to San Francisco, Jesse's beloved grandfather, Papouli, dies in his sleep. Jesse and Michelle are both devastated as they try to come to terms with his death.



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Episode credited cast:
D.J. Tanner (as Candace Cameron)
Michelle Tanner (as Mary Kate Ashley Olsen)
Michelle Tanner (as Mary Kate Ashley Olsen)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Miss Barnes
Denise (as Jurnee Smollett)


Jesse's beloved grandfather from Greece, Papouli, comes to San Francisco to visit the Tanners. His visit is highlighted by bonding with Jesse's nieces, D.J., Stephanie and especially young Michelle. One evening, Papouli promises Michelle that he will visit her first-grade class to teach them a Greek dance the next day. Sadly, the bonding activities foreshadow the very worst: That night, Papouli dies in his sleep. Jesse is devastated, believing he could have done something to save Papouli's life. However, the family has just as difficult a time convincing Michelle that Papouli is dead and will not be visiting her class after all. Eventually, both Jesse and Michelle help each other come to grips with the loss of Papouli and grieve in each other's arms. In the end, Michelle - with help from Danny and Jesse - does the only thing possible: Go to class, share the news about Papouli's death, and then teach a basic Greek dance to the class in celebration of his life. Written by Brian Rathjen <briguy_52748@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Comedy | Drama | Family

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

8 February 1994 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The title is based on the song "Last Dance" written by the Paul Jabara and sung by Donna Summer in 1978. See more »


When Michelle walks into her classroom, her backpack disappears from her shoulder between shots. See more »


Papouli: Of *course* you are!
See more »

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User Reviews

Good ep, but there's a piece missing...
9 June 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Ah, yes, the famous Papouli episode. The obligatory "very special" episode dealing with the death of a loved one. As corny as Full House can be, I do believe this episode was very moving and well-written for the most part. Particularly, the transition music between Papouli's last scene as he bonds with Michelle over a traditional Greek dance and the next morning as the family gathers around the kitchen table and grieves, is bone-chilling. Such an abrupt change in tone to symbolize how suddenly Papouli died. Yet whenever I catch a rerun of this episode, I feel as if there's something missing. Something pretty major.

Remember the original premise of Full House? Danny Tanner was a widower. I repeat, a WIDOWER. The first season dealt with not only Jesse and Joey moving in to help raise three daughters, but Danny and the girls coping with their wife and mother's untimely death in a car crash. After the first season, the late Pam Tanner was mentioned very little throughout the rest of the series. And out of all episodes they could have mentioned her in, they failed to do so in the "very special" death episode. This episode would have been a perfect opportunity to mention the tragic death of Danny's wife/Jesse's sister/DJ, Stephanie and Michelle's mother. They could have very easily written a lament for Danny, Jesse, DJ or Stephanie about how Papouli's death reminds them of the pain and grief they felt when Pam passed away. Perhaps in the next to last scene where Jesse and Michelle grieve together in the boat in the backyard, he could have told her a little story about her mother, since she was too young to have any recollection of her. I don't understand how it couldn't have occurred to any of the writers that this would be a good time for the family to talk about Pam, especially since Papouli was her grandfather as well as Jesse's. That detail has always bothered me.

Other than that, I think this episode handled the death issue quite well considering the large detail they missed. Papouli has very limited screen time, and he was only seen previously in the "Greek Week" episode waaaaaay back in season 4, but he has that lust for life and an irresistible charm that makes you fall in love with him right away and leaves you teary-eyed when he dies. The remaining 2/3 of the episode is somber, but ultimately there's a happy ending.

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