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Recap / The Brady Bunch S 5 E 21 The Hustler

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Youngest of the Brady boys, Bobby Brady was a big dreamer, and at times insecure about his own lack of talents, except when he became... "The Hustler".

When Greg, Peter and Bobby are playing basketball, a delivery truck pulls up in the Bradys' driveway, and the driver explains that they have two crates for Mike. While Peter wants to open the crates, Carol refuses, saying that as the crates were delivered to Mike, Mike will open them when he gets home.

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Finally, Mike arrives home, as the suspense is killing the Bradys, and opens the crate to find a pool table, which he hadn't even ordered. Albeit, next day at work, his boss, Mr. Matthews explains that he gave him the pool table as a present for a job well done, but the letter with it must have gone lost. As a sign of gratitude, Mike then invites him over to dinner. But as the time draws nearer to the dinner party, Mr. Matthews mentions several friends of him, whom Mike always invites over too.

Meanwhile, the boys busy themselves with pool. Greg and Peter are not that good at it... but Bobby soon proves to be the pool champ, and starts spending his whole time on practising pool. One day, when Cindy comes home, she personally thinks that Bobby is just wasting his time on a dumb game, and reckons that he still couldn't beat Greg and Peter. However, Bobby still claims that he could 'beat those bums with his hand tied behind his back'. Just then, offended by his remark, Greg and Peter challenge him to game, and Bobby settles on 9-ball, as 'that way he could beat them quicker'. And they even challenge him to a bet - with the loser(s) having to shine the winners' shoes for a month, and agree to let Bobby break...

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...which proves to be a bad idea, as Bobby still manages to pocket all nine balls without a miss, and puts his brothers to their duty. Although they point out that they have homework to do, and also that Bobby should be doing his instead of practising pool, Bobby dismisses them that he won't need school and he's going to be "the pool champ of the whole world". And in the night, that's exactly what he dreams about - him being the pool champ of the world, calling and making each shot - even knocking three yellow balls into three different pockets at the same time while blindfolded, and his performance ends with cash raining down on him. Except that Peter wakes him up, which makes him annoyed: "Thanks to you I just blew a million bucks." One night, when he's again playing pool in the carport just when Greg arrives home after a date. He dismisses him again, so Greg tells Mike; who then goes to the carport and tells Bobby that while he's proud of him practising pool hard and wanting to become the champ, then this isn't something he should be doing in the night.

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Finally, the much-anticipated dinner party rolls around. While Greg is out on yet another date, and Marcia would take Peter, Jan and Cindy to the movies, Bobby is forced to stay home and catch up on his homework.

Just then, the guests arrive, and to pass time while the dinner cooks, they agree to play pool. However, Mike (and the other two friends of Mr. Matthews) cheat to let the boss (who's really not so good at pool) win. However, just then, Bobby, having caught up on all his homework, comes out to watch, and manages to get Mr. Matthews challenge him to a game, even making a bet - a pack of chewing gum. Mike agrees. However, Bobby, unfamiliar with the concept of "let the boss win", starts playing like he did in his dream - calling (and making) each shot. This makes the guests uneasy - Mr. Sinclair even tells Mike that if Bobby was his son, he'd break his arm, but Mike believes it's all just luck. Bobby soundly wins the game, and Mr. Matthews is ready to pay off the bet. While Bobby thinks it's not necessary, Mr. Matthews insists that he wants to pay off. Mike then calculates that after betting on every shot, and also keeping doubling, Mr. Matthews owes Bobby 256 packs of gum. As Bobby goes inside, Mr. Matthews, seeing how good of a player Bobby was and how terrible he himself was, asks his wife to call the charity in the morning, as he decides to donate his pool table. But Mike insists on donating the Bradys' pool table instead - while he loves it, they just don't have the room for it. Hearing this, Mr. Matthews suddenly decides that if he practised more and got pointers from Bobby, he could get good at pool too.

In the tag scene, the same delivery truck from the beginning pulls up in the Brady driveway, only that this time, the Bradys recieve a smaller pack, which this time even has a note with it - Mr. Matthews stayed true to the bet and had the 256 packs of gum delivered to Bobby.

Tropes present in this episode:

  • Acquired Situational Narcissism: Bobby, when he proves to be good at pool. He spends his whole time practising pool, and even falls behind on his homework, and annoys his brothers with his sudden boastful attitude.
  • Dream Sequence: Bobby's dream of being a pint-sized Minnesota Fats. Bobby calls each shot, which he subsequently makes, his dream ending just as he is soaked with adulation and thousands of dollars in cash.
  • Here We Go Again!: The tag scene.
  • Playing Billiards With The Boss: The Bradys invite Mike's boss, Mr. Matthews, along with a few others to the house for an evening cookout and games of pool ... and Bobby – foregoing etiquette that suggests allowing the boss to sometimes win, regardless of ability – soundly beats Mr. Matthews.
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