Tahnee telling Lyn that she's going to New York and it's a shame Michelle isn't
Karl showing Susan the Lou Reed tickets
Joe confronting Michelle over her lying about the New York trip
Michelle says she was going to tell them.
JOE: What? When you send us a postcard from New York?
He says that they felt bad about it but Michelle wonders why they're not proud of her – hardly anyone makes it through to the interview stage. She makes a comment about them being happy that she doesn't want to live out her life in the 'burbs, like them. Methinks Lynnie is a little proud, given the smirk she tries to hide.
Joe says he was going to change his mind but now he's not. No interview, no New York, no getting out of the 'burbs. Lyn plays peacekeeper but Michelle storms out to go for a walk. Joe can't believe that she insulted them but Lyn points out she's just a restless teenager. She says they need to understand her, that's how it'll be settled. But Joe's already settled it.
Toadie thanks Harold profusely for advertising the Undiscovered Competition being held at Uni FM. He rattles off about the support that they're getting and saying that they're looking for the next Killing Heidi or Silverchair.
(They're popular groups in Australia for any non-Aussies out there…)
Connor shows a bit of interest – you can see those cogs turning from here.
HAROLD: I take it choirs are eligible?
TOADIE: (worried) …Yeah.
HAROLD: Oh good. You see we do a rather funky jazzy version of the 23rd Psalm.
The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:
He leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul:
He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His name' sake.
Yes. Jazz that up, Harry. Bet they're a riot at funerals where that Psalm is often read.
When Harold mentions Nina's name Connor asked Toadie about the standard of entries thus far. Rumour has it that "I Am Not There" is being given a disco beat before being entered…
Tahnee walks in and Connor walks over to have a word. Tahnee snidely remarks that since the "awful scene" with Nina, Michelle has been really nice to her. Connor's not fooled and knows that there has to have been a reason for Nina to lose it like that. Connor asks what's really going on but Tahnee plays dumb.
Michelle comes home and Lyn tells her that Joe's in the garage if she wants to make peace. She says that Michelle really hurt Joe with what she said. Michelle didn't mean it but Joe should still have been supportive. She's been getting a lot of support from the school and I wonder why Susan didn't tell Lyn until I remember that Susan can't, well, remember. Michelle wants Lyn to plead her case to Joe but until Michelle makes her own move, Lyn's not budging. Michelle's under pressure – she needs to let the interview board when she's available to interview the next day. Lyn points out she's not available and she needs to sort this thing out with Joe.
Connor reckons that Tahnee is trying to come between Nina and Michelle, same way she tried to come between him and Michelle once upon a time. Tahnee says it's nothing of the sort.
CONNOR: Yeah, and Harold's the Queen's long-lost son.
TAHNEE: It's true.
Oh. No. It's just clumsy juxtaposition on the part of the writer.
Tahnee says that Michelle gave her a second chance and she's not pushing it. She wants them all to be friends but Connor's still not buying it. As Tahnee leaves Harold asks what's going on, he's sick of all the squabbling. Connor tells him that he thinks Tahnee is bullying Nina, that she's taking advantage of Nina's passive nature. Harold agrees that it would have had to have been something to rile Nina in that manner.
Harold says Nina needs a confidence boost and that her singing might be just the thing.
Oh for pity's sake. My drama teacher said I could sing, but I hate being on stage so she used to have to hide me in the chorus just to get me up there. Sometimes things just don't happen. But this is a soap so we all know that Nina will stop being the shy girl and go on to be a successful singer.
Wish real life worked that way.
Susan and Karl are having pre-show drinks, but while he's getting them Susan's looking at the Undiscovered flyer. When Karl returns she quickly puts it down and starts to enthuse about the concert, hoping that Karl can put up with the loud music.
KARL: Maybe Lou Reed's mellowed with age.
SUSAN: Lou Reed will never grow old. He will be the epitome of cool until the day he dies.
Karl wonders if he's held onto more dignity than the Rolling Stones and Susan jokes there's nothing wrong with old men in tight clothes.
KARL: Oh, I should go change into my leather pants?
Ew, ew, ew.
Susan wonders if they'll be the oldest ones there, if all the kids will be wondering who the "oldies" are and why they're there. I'm just wondering why she thinks kids will be at a Lou Reed concert. Sweet, amnesiac Susan. So out of touch in many ways and I'm actually loving the subtlety and the way they're matching Susan's acceptance of being a 40-something woman with her feeling like a teenager.
Karl agrees to let Susan get him grooving so long as she doesn't drag him backstage as she was inclined to do when they first started going out. Susan wonders if they met any stars.
KARL: Johnny Farnham…
(Big Aussie legend for those who don't know. Don't worry, I didn't when I first saw this episode.)
Karl and Susan race in giggling, Karl saying they need a case. Something professional looking… Susan's make up case looks just like a defibrillator. He asks if she's got black pants, white shirt and a black cardigan. When Susan comments about it being what she wears at the Coffee Shop I want to know why he doesn't know what's in her wardrobe…
SUSAN: But we're going to the Lou Reed concert!
KARL: Yes we are.
SUSAN: I'm already dressed for the concert!
KARL: Yes, but not for what I've got in mind.
He's not telling her what he has got in mind, saying he knows curiosity will get the better of her, it always does. She heads up the stairs, begins to say something but he cuts across her, telling her to go and get changed.
Connor bursts in on Lyn not-so-subtly eavesdropping on Michelle and Joe. They talk in hushed whispers about father and daughter hopefully making peace. Connor joins Lyn in the snooping as we cut to the kitchen where Michelle is apologising. She loves her life, loves her parents. Joe says he loves her too that's why what she said hurts. Michelle says she wasn't having a go at his values, she just wants more. She's growing up in a world where people travel and she can't understand why he's so reluctant to let her at least attend the interview.
Outside the concert hall
In what suspiciously looks to be the school grounds, playing at being somewhere else, Karl pulls up in his car right to the barrier by the stage door. He and Susan get out and make a big show about being doctor and nurse (something tells me they've done this before…) and barge their way through the crowd. He flashes his ID card at the security guard, saying someone's in trouble inside. The guard knows nothing about it, but they barge past.
He accepts that Karl's the doctor but who's she?
KARL: She's my nurse.
SUSAN: (holding up the case) Susan Smith, RN.
SECURITY GUY: Royal Navy?
KARL: Registered Nurse.
The guard is still hesitant but when Karl says he could end up being responsible for someone's death he relents.
Score! They're in.
KARL: We are so gonna get busted.
SUSAN: Just relax, relax!
As they walk down the hallway the guard calls out. Nervously they turn around… only for him to point out which direction backstage is.
Toadie's on the phone to his mum.
TOADIE: OK, Mum. Stuart likes to put the cereal in the fridge because it has something to do with the Great Mouse Plague that happened in Oakey in 95.
When he gets off the phone he greets Nina, who politely greets him back as Jarrod. He says that in private she can call him Toadie like everyone else. But they're not in private. They're at work. At a high class hotel. I would have thought Jarrod would have been more appropriate.
Not-so-tactfully he brings up the Undiscovered competition and Nina knows exactly where this is heading and isn't having a bar of it. He says he knows she hates singing in front of an audience but the good thing about radio is that it's just audio. She can sing and no one will know it's her. But she's not having a bar of it.
Karl and Susan are ejected with the standard line of, "And stay out." A couple of people giggle as they pass, I think they're just too chicken to try. Karl sulks that they didn't get to meet the great man, but Susan pulls out a pair of sunnies and puts them on saying she got the next best thing.
KARL: You could have gotten us arrested!
SUSAN: I'd have just said it was your idea and you made me do it.
As she gets back into the car she says they'd better get going or they'll miss the beginning. Given it looked like people were going in for the actual concert through those same doors, how exactly do they think they'll get back in?
Harold has closed up and sits down with some food to start the paperwork when there's a knock on the door. Joe comes in to fix the cupboard for him. Harold asks after the family and Joe tells him about Michelle's New York wish. Harold talks about letting Tad go – you can't stop them growing up.
He reads an email that Tad's sent him.
HAROLD: "One thing I've learnt having to fend for myself is what a tough job it must have been for looking after me and Paul for all those years… I salute you." See, they do appreciate us in the end.
Following morning and Michelle's ranting to Connor about Joe's reluctance to budge. She's not buying the crime angle and thinks he's just afraid that she'll have a good time. Meanwhile, Joe and Lyn have come in and when she's done ranting he announces that if she wants to go for the interview then she can. Michelle's thrilled, going over and giving him a hug.
Lyn tells Joe that he's made the right decision but he's still not happy with how she's gone about it all. Lyn says that all she can think about is her first big adventure.
Toadie puts on a song before coming out to say hi to Susan. After asking how she's getting on, Susan hands him a tape for the competition. When he realises it's the Right Prescription he jokes that he's almost tempted to play it. He's beyond amused when Susan raves about it, saying it'll win hands down. As she dashes off for her shift at the Coffee Shop Toadie looks at the tape and smiles.
Burn it, Toadie. It's probably the only copy. We can all be saved.
Tahnee's gushing about the three of them being in New York together. Michelle says that it's good to see Tahnee and Nina have made up, a subject Nina quickly steers away from by saying it's great Joe's letting her interview. Michelle says he took some working on before she won, right before Nina points out Lyn's just overheard her little victory speech.
Karl's telling Harold that he's thrilled he and Susan are finding things to share again – life was getting a bit lonely. Speaking of, Susan races in, apologising for being late. She thanks Karl for the great night and he invites her to lunch at the pub.
Toadie's giving a rant about chick flicks, citing 'Ghost' as being anything but romantic. The guy's dead and he's haunting you. Got a point there, actually…
TOADIE: Talking about romance, here's an ode to two star-crossed loves. Two mates of mine, Dr K and little Susie. And if this song makes you feel a little bit sick, well don't blame me, go consult a doctor. This is The Right Prescription.
For the sake of the summary I resist the urge to mute the sound so I can hear Karl's strained reaction to finding out that Susan's entered the tape.
Susan thinks it's got a chance, she loves it. Given the reaction of the extras and probably thousands of viewers, she's in a distinct minority. Susan refuses to let him ask for it to be turned off, announcing loudly that some people just don't know talent when they hear it.
It's old. Dated. Bit daggy?
SUSAN: Free As A River could never be daggy.
Oh poor, naïve, obviously tone deaf Susan…
Coffee Shop / Uni FM
Connor asks if they could switch over to Uni FM, thankfully tuning in just as Toadie takes the song off the air.
Toadie bags out Karl a little before saying that they do welcome all comers. For instance, this next tape he knows nothing about…
Tahnee says that it's so slack, putting on a tape he's never even heard.
TAHNEE: Somebody should tell him nobody wants to hear rubbish like that last song.
The one that you didn't even hear?
Toadie puts the tape in (ah, 2002. Archaic times…) and presses play.
The opening bars of "Born To Try" begin to play and Nina looks very uncomfortable as Connor watches nervously.
Joe's obviously thinking about Michelle while the song plays and he goes to turn it up before looking at a photo of him and Michelle.
This song is magic. Karl and Susan tore up the divorce papers to it, Joe learns to accept Michelle as someone with wings to spread…
Harold's typing on the computer when he recognises Nina's voice and turns the song up.
Nina wants to kill Connor but she can't as that might look a bit suspicious.
Karl and Susan sigh and admit that the singer is very good and that he doesn't stand a chance. I guess they weren't paying attention in the last episode otherwise they'd have heard it already.
Coffee Shop / Uni FM
Tahnee thinks that the singer is a professional, trying to scam the radio. As if it weren't bad enough for Nina, Toadie comes back on air.
TOADIE: Wow. I don't know about you, that's given me goosebumps. This girl has got star quality written all over her.
And I want to scream in Nina's defence. Some of us don't want to shine. Some of us are happy living nice, simple lives thank you very much.
Toadie goes on to say that he doesn't know who sings it or what it's called and makes it a challenge, a prize to the first person who rings in and identifies the singer.
Nina's laying into Connor, saying that she gave him the tape after he promised that no one would hear it. Now in the last episode when he caught her singing, they talked for a bit before she switched off the recorder, so it would have picked up the two of them talking. Toadie just needs to play the tape a bit longer and mystery solved.
Connor says he did it for her own good, she saw the reaction people had to her music. Nina doesn't care and she warns him not to tell anyone. When Michelle and Tahnee come back she gets flustered and leaves. Michelle asks where she's going and Connor covers, saying she had something to do.