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The Practice

Cage/Fish & Associates

"Welcome Home"

A fictional episode review by Earl Fernandez on the imaginary episode, "Welcome Home." This was written on December 12, 1998, the night of the Billboard Music Awards, so there was no real episode, but it still fooled a lot of people on alt.tv.ally-mcbeal.

All of the discussion about "Welcome Home" has been compiled by Mike Harris (1/14/99)

View the alt.tv.ally-mcbeal thread that started it all: "Welcome Home"

Episode Guide Entry (Revision 2.0)

Guest Stars

Ally's Father...................................................Burt Ward
Ally's Mother.................................................Mimi Rogers
Ally's Mother (Elderly).......................................Eileen Ryan
Ally's Sister..................................................Lisa Waltz
Ally Mocker #1..................................................Andy Dick
Ally Mocker #2..............................................Kathy Griffin
Special Cameos................................Garth Brooks, Courtney Love

Scenes

  • Elaine came home with Ally and her mom asked, "Dear, is there something you want to tell us about yourself?" That perturbed look was just priceless when Ally nonchalantly replied, "No mother, we only kissed once."

  • Ally just had to be daddy's little girl, I should guessed a long time ago. Especially with a mother who constantly picks at her, I was cracking up when she said, "Ally, you need to put on a little weight." I guess I would have blown up too after maybe two or three of those. It was a wonder (given Ally's usual demeanor) that she has held out so long before her vociferation, "Mom, you're going to have to understand that I'm 28 years old! I am no longer your little girl that you can just shovel food into. I am not a turkey and this is not a holiday dinner... Well, okay, maybe the second one, but I am not a kid anymore."

  • My second favorite scene is where Ally's Mom compares Ally to Elaine, "Why can't you be more like your friend?" Ally's retort, "She's a slut." If Ally was going to roast Elaine, does she have to do it at her parent's house? Poor Elaine, when is Ally going to think before she talks about her "friend". I really felt sorry for Elaine the when she said, "Excuse Me" after that closed-lipped "snappish" under her breath stares. Yes, but having Elaine slap her to the ground and go to kicking her was a bit over the top, don't you think? Not to mention out of character for Elaine. You know that fake smile was covering up her disappointment. At least Ally had the common decency to chase after her.

  • Favorite Ally line, "Not now mother!" This one was classic, but what I want to know is how she managed to say anything given the position of her body at the time.

  • Seeing Ally's sister-in-law (Lisa Waltz) finally stop crying in the kitchen and get the courage to walk out on her husband. Well, actually, I think the sister didn't have the courage to walk out on her husband. Remember? Ally suggested that she and her sister have a kissing session in front of him, which would make him want to go away. Unfortunately, the husband was into that kind of thing and he suggested that Ally, her sister, and him all get married, just like the people on "Silver Bells." Ally saw a dancing baby, but the sister finally got mad enough to build up the courage to walk away. It was such a great scene. I beg to differ. Her sister didn't so much "walk" away as she danced away. However, this was one of my favorite moments in the show of all time. The dancing infant was used to perfection in this episode and the use of "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" as his background music was particularly festive. I could tell Ally was left with a great deal of uncertainty after the appearance of the dancing infant. It left me a bit unsettled at the end of the show, but in a good way.

  • The basketball game on the driveway. Who knew Fish had a jump shot like that? Poor John, he's just too short. Those 4 inch shoes got in the way.

  • The heartbreaking dinner scene where dad's emphysema kicks in and he can't stop coughing. Don't you love the way they crossed over to "Chicago Hope" and sent Ally's dad to that hospital? What a way for DEK to honor one of his old shows.

  • An unspecified shower scene, and an unspecified time-travelling scene

  • Get her and billy to have a fight and move in with NELL -- they attempted this in Welcome Home, but it just didn't work out. Nell's apartment only has 1 1/2 bath and they argued over how long each took in the full bath. Also, Nell likes to polish her toe-nails while watching The Real World and Georgia thought the show was too contrived. Not to mention the fact that Georgia ate all Nell's chunky peanut butter and didn't buy more. You think Ling gets nasty -- whew!

  • Where Elaine and Fish streak through the office on a dare

  • I just want to know how they plan to continue developing the script after she slid under the gas truck and it exploded. Nobody could have survived that.

This Episode's Fishism

"Names are only what you're called by, not who you are."

Production History

Version #1: Actual Episode

CBS bought exclusive pre-broadcast rights to both seasons of Ally McBeal, which allows them to broadcast any unaired episodes before they air in the states. Overseas is another matter entirely. Part of the provisions of this pre-broadcast agreement, however is that the episodes must be shown before they air and must be subtitled in Latvian.

When Fox television signed the deal with DEK to air episodes of AM there was a clause in the contract that guaranteed that Fox would air all episodes created and if Fox was unable to fulfill this contract due to scheduling conflicts, such as a "special event" or sporting event, then the producers of the show had the exclusive right to broadcast the show on any network which would have it, but only for that time when Fox was unable to comply.

Version #2: "Ally McBeal Live"

What happened was that the actors from AM went to the Billboard awards and acted out the show in the audience whenever the camera would focus on them. That's amazing! I mean, doing a shower scene during the Billboard awards from the audience? Where *did* they get the props? Or was that Mike and his amazing CGI squad again? The water was real. But the clothes were removed from the actresses via CGI to protect their modesty. Of course the somewhat soaked, non A-M cast members in the audience were less than amused.

Instructions on How to Have Viewed It

You had to have one of those televisions with closed captioning and it had to be turned on. The Billboard Awards were on, but Ally McBeal was aired in captions only.

You had to have one of the RCA or Motorol TVs with the "Screen in Screen" feature that allows you to watch two shows at once. If you turned on Fox, you got the awards show. If you set the SiS on and to the same station, you got Ally with the sub-titles. Next, you had to use the "switch" function to put Ally on the large screen and the awards show on the inset one. Lastly, you shut off the SiS, the captioning goes away, and you watch the secret Ally show in peace and comfort.

It was only available via satellite.

The lucky people who saw it had it beamed directly into their heads by Jesse Helms.

Current Retail Availability

VIDEOTAPE: jaZZ and I have copies of the 'Welcome Home' episode for sale! Only $19.95+ $5 shipping & Handling.

DVD: Yes ... it's the only "Ally" episode one can get on DVD at this point. Additionally, it has added audio tracks where you can hear the episode from the perspective of various characters in the episode (aside from "Ally"), scenes that were originally removed from the episode, and an essay about Calista's weight by DEK. :)

Writers

Earl Fernandez <efernandez_98@yahoo.com>

... with ...

Amletto di Milano <amletto@my-dejanews.com>
Matt Lupo <hamlet@elsinore.lupo.com>
jaZZmanian Devil <jaZZ@drunkenbastards.org>
Stuart O. Bronstein <sab@idiom.com>
Arthur Tham <webmaster@amcb.hypermart.net>
Tim Dunleavy <timd@voicenet.com>
Mike Harris <mharris@enteract.com>
SMUgrad <smugrad@mindspring.com>

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Sara Evans
Sara Evans

1. Legal Notice: "Ally McBeal" TM and (or copyright) Fox and its related companies. All rights reserved. Any reproduction, duplication, or distribution in any form is expressly prohibited.; and

2. Disclaimer: This web site, its operators, and any content contained on this site relating to "Ally McBeal" are not authorized by Fox.

Copyright 1998-2001 Arthur Tham . All rights reserved.
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