Finally Together: A TV Ratings Guide Original Program!

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EPISODE 1

Fran and Brian Cross are the matriarch and patriarch of the Cross family. The entire family is coming to their house in North Carolina for a family reunion to celebrate Fran’s 70th birthday. 

(Alarm rings at 6am).

FRAN

You know what day it is Brian!

BRIAN

Yes, the day before your 70th birthday.

FRAN

I prefer Birthday Eve and 16th birthday.

BRIAN

Except you’re married with three children and five grandchildren. And you’ve been my loving wife for 17 years.

FRAN

We’ve been married for 42.

BRIAN

I stand by my statement. Anyways, I know it means a lot to you that your whole family is coming home for your birthday, and for that reason it means a lot to me too. Let’s get this sucker set up.

(BOTH HEAD DOWNSTAIRS)

FRAN

So I’m thinking we–

BRIAN
Eat breakfast? Already on it. 

(BRIAN TAKES OUT A GRANOLA BAR AND SOME ORANGE JUICE.)

FRAN
OK, yeah, breakfast. Well I’m skipping it. I was saying I think we should set up this home to have something for everyone, but I don’t know how.

BRIAN
Why? This house is exactly the same as it was when they all left.

FRAN
Exactly, Brian. It’s the same. People change though. Except you, you still look as if 1983 was a person.

BRIAN

And why would anyone change?

FRAN
It’s just what people do. We all have our inner feelings and values, but people grow and tastes change.

BRIAN
Well then let’s just make this house as best as it can be without really changing anything. I’m sure people aren’t expecting much anyway. It’s just family, some of them lived under this very roof for years.

FRAN

True. So, you clean the upstairs rooms and I’ll clean down here?

BRIAN

We could do that. Or I could go to the grocery store and pick up ice cream, just a thought.

FRAN

Fine, pick up whatever you can get but don’t spend more than $50. My pension can only get us so far.

BRIAN

Alright I’ll be back.

(BRIAN GOES OUT TO BUY FOOD WHILE FRAN MAKES THE HOUSE LOOKS PRESENTABLE.)

BRIAN (RETURNING)
Don’t get mad but I couldn’t help myself, who knew how much food a store would have?

FRAN
How much did you spend?

BRIAN

$130…or so.

FRAN
Brian! If you want to make it to 80 we’ll have to spread out my pension money as long as possible. This isn’t the way to do that!

BRIAN
Relax Fran, it’s only for your 70th birthday. We have guests coming, we need to make them feel welcome. Maybe convince one of them to have us move in with them?

FRAN
I know we barely have any money, but the last thing I want to do is beg to our kids. After all, we taught them that money isn’t important.

BRIAN

We’ll talk about it later I suppose. This house looks like it hasn’t been cleaned in two years.

FRAN

I just cleaned…also it’s my birthday, can’t I be off the hook for this one?

BRIAN

Fine, honey. I’m thinking we find pictures of our children and grandchildren to show them we love them. Also, not your birthday. 

FRAN
Close enough. But where do we put the pictures? They can’t all fit in the same spot.

BRIAN

Well…who do we like best then?

FRAN
We love all our kids equally Brian.

BRIAN

Do we though? Last I checked we barely talk to any of them.

FRAN
They’ve all moved on, but this is the time we can get the family back together as one.

BRIAN

Also you were supposed to shut down the idea, you realize we don’t have pictures of too many of them.

FRAN
Fine. We haven’t been the most hands-on grandparents. We let Catherine name one of her kids Britney 2 for Christ’s sake!

BRIAN

Well, I do agree that this is our chance to bring our family together for a little while. Let’s put up a few pictures, say we lost the others, and give them some food and dessert. Flawless plan on our part. Everything else is in the hands of them and God.

FRAN
We’re screwed.

________________________

EPISODE 2

David Cross, son of Fran and Brian, is prepared to guide his family down to his parents’ house, including his wife Mary, and children Chris, Julian, and Drew. 

DAVID

You all ready for vacation?!!


MARY

Chris certainly isn’t. He’s been in bed for 14 hours now.


DAVID

Well drag him into the car, because I already told my boss I’ll be taking the week out of work.


JULIAN
The whole week Dad?

DAVID

Yes, I know, I’ve never done that and my job is on the line for it so we better do this right. Let’s wake up Chris.


(ALL HEAD INTO CHRIS’S ROOM.)


DAVID

Chris, get up, time for our family reunion.


CHRIS
Why?


DAVID

I just said why…


CHRIS
I mean why are we having a family reunion? Aren’t those supposed to be awful?


DAVID

Yep, but it’s what your grandmother wants.


CHRIS

How old is she, like 110?


DAVID
Not funny Chris. Get up and get in the car. You’ve already gotten the middle seat.


CHRIS

How far away is the airport?


DAVID

No airport, we’re heading straight there.


CHRIS

Dad, really?! Aren’t they in North Dakota or something? That’s a long way from Idaho!


DAVID

They’re in North Carolina.


DREW
What?? Can’t that be illegal?


DAVID

Having a mediocre wage with my job on the line is the thing that should be illegal, get in the car and play I Spy or whatever.


MARY
Relax David. If we want the kids to like this we have to be open about going. And money problems shouldn’t be talked about in front of them, these problems have a way of going away.


DAVID

Making Chris pay the bills doesn’t mean the problem is going away hypocrite, it just means you’re ignoring it. Kids, get in the car, we won’t get to North Carolina by magic!


(SKIP AHEAD TO 3 HOURS LATER. ALL 3 KIDS ARE ASLEEP, BUT CHRIS’S LOUD MUSIC IS STILL COMING THROUGH HIS HEADPHONES.)


MARY

Well we’re still on the road so that’s good.


DAVID

Uh huh.


MARY

You sound mad.


DAVID

It would be nice if someone else could drive for a bit, I’m not Megaman.


MARY
Superman?


DAVID

Chris wake up, you’re driving now!

MARY
NO! If you want to make it to North Carolina you’ll let Julian drive.


JULIAN (WAKING UP)

Mom I’m 14. You know that.


MARY 

At least you’re more responsible than your brother.


JULIAN

Why don’t you drive mom?


MARY
No backtalk.


CHRIS

Yeah Mom you have your license.


MARY
I don’t want to drive.


DAVID

Neither do I!


MARY
IT WAS YOUR IDEA TO TAKE A CAR!


DAVID (PULLING ASIDE)

Fine. We’ll find an airport and take a plane. Happy?


MARY

Not that easy.


DAVID
Then driving it is. We better not be like this when we get there.


DREW

You mean if we get there?

DAVID
Go back to sleep. All of you. Chris shut your music off. I’ll get us there.


CHRIS
Go Megaman!


MARY

How long do we have left again?


DAVID

According to my phone…1 day and 8 hours.


MARY 

We’ll be there 11 hours after everyone else at this pace!


DAVID

And that’s a bad thing?


DREW

How should I know, I’ve never met them.


DAVID

Not talking to you. Didn’t I say something about sleep?


DREW

Then we’ll be wide awake at 4am.


DAVID

Dammit you’re right.


MARY

Don’t swear at the kids. You’re just taking your frustration out on them, aren’t you? You’re finally figuring out this is a bad idea!


DAVID

We’ll get there.


(ANOTHER DAY GOES BY)


DAVID

Alright, thanks to me driving way past the speed limit through every area except where there are police, we’re two hours away.


MARY

You realize all the traffic tickets you’re going to get is going to add up to more than the cost of taking a plane, right?


DAVID

Chris will take care of it.


CHRIS

No I won’t.


MARY

OK, stop everyone. I think we’re all tired. Let’s pretend like we always get along, it will make our hosts and our extended family happy.


(2 HOURS LATER) 


DAVID

Getting close kids! Remember, we’re a happy and loving family this week. Julian, if you want more than two people to sign your notebook you’ll obey. Drew, first impressions are everything. Chris…well you have nothing to lose. 


(THEY PULL INTO THE DRIVEWAY AND WALK OVER TO THE FRONT DOOR)


BRIAN

William, Catherine, you’re here! I didn’t know you had a son too! I’ll take Fran’s presents.


MARY (TO DAVID)

Uh I don’t think we remembered the presents.


DAVID (TO MARY)

I don’t think we got presents at at all. And they also think we’re other people.


MARY (TO DAVID)

Want to ditch this?


DAVID (TO MARY)

We came too far for that. Let’s just make the best of it.

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