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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Ralph is trying to sneak into the apartment at 2:00am from a Lodge
meeting. Norton comes in and asks to use the fire escape to enter the
apartment as Trixie has chained the door shut. By the time Norton has
left through the window, Alice confronts Ralph about his constant
lateness. Norton returns to the apartment. It seems Trixie is also
awake and has tried to slam the window on him. Ralph needs to entertain
Bert Wedemeyer who it is rumored will soon be the new general manager.
He has suggested playing pool but Bert wanted to entertain Ralph at his
home and introduce him to his new wife. Ralph and Norton tell Alice and
Trixie that they are going to make up for ignoring them by taking them
out to Bert's house for coffee and cake. When the boys have left, Alice
and Trixie talk about how maybe they have let themselves go since
marriage. Alice suggests that they dress up and act like dates--that'll
get the boys attention!
Little do they know that Ralph and Ed are planning this outing as a networking event to get Ralph in good with Bert by piling on the flattery for himself and his new wife. On the trip over to the Wedemeyer's, Ralph and Ed walk ahead of their wives, don't talk to them and don't even notice their new dresses.
They meet Bert, neglecting to introduce the wives, and when they do, introduce them as Mrs. Kramden and Mrs. Norton. Bert seems like a genuinely friendly guy with a real interest in striking up a friendship with Ralph and Ed. His wife Rita enters in a tight dress, acting a bit like Marilyn Monroe, and Ralph gives her a brief "Hamina-hamina," before settling down and troweling on the compliments. Ed assists in the snow job (watch the expression on Trixie's face when he calls Bert's furnishing "suave.") and Alice feign's a headache to extract them from the Wedemeyer's domestic bliss.
When Ralph comes home the next evening, Alice is dressed up similarly to Rita, and calls him "Killer." Ralph thinks she's been eating the rum candy again, but Alice explains that she's seen the kind of woman Ralph appreciates and she will find it easy to be just like Rita. Ralph explains he was only playing up to her to make an impression on Bert. Alice asks why Ralph has been taking her for granted and not expressing his love, and Ralph admits it because he is a mook and that Alice is the greatest. Then they kiss and make up.
This is a great and genuinely funny episode as it explores the misunderstanding of the husbands and wives from both points of view. Who knows, maybe if Ralph had social media, he could have stayed home more, but since he wouldn't even pay for telephone or television, I guess internet service is out too. As for Rita Wedemeyer, the woman who can't seem to smoke a cigarette unless it's in a holder, she is comic gold. She's just completely guileless, and all of the sarcasm of Alice's little jibes at Ralph floats over her serene head without making any impression. When Alice announces that she's been thinking of getting Ralph something, "and he might get it really soon," Rita seems to think that she means a gift, maybe a nice tie and tie clip to accent his bus drivers uniform. She earnestly suggests a store with nice things. Alice seems to think she's taking advantage of Bert, but he seems content to bake cookies in the kitchen to allow his wife day long spa sessions so who knows, this marriage could work. Sadly, we never see or hear of the Wedemeyers again.
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