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Big White Lies - Recap

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The episode begins with, Brad and Jane being hypersexual, much to the chagrin of Penny and Alex who are eating with them. Alex implores them to buy the lake house already so they don’t have to listen to Brad talk about his “big, black dock.” She then corrects herself. “I was supposed to say ‘African American’ dock. I’m sorry.” “Better,” Brad replies. Penny then tries to slump down to avoid a childhood friend who has returned to Chicago and apparently she’s been avoiding her since childhood. Childhood Friend comes over and suggests a tea party to get caught up. Penny instead lies about water damage, which she insists is easier because it spares a person’s feelings. Its then she notices Brad drinks tea, which she’d earlier had said was only for losers.

Penny and Alex are leaving their apartment when Childhood Friend shows up again wanting to help with the water damage, but Penny lies again about it being fixed. When she mentions that they going to see Brad and Jane anyway, Childhood Friend wants to come along, which leads to another lie about it being a lake house, which leads to another lie about it being too small for her to come and with every question and resulting lie, the Childhood Friend takes a step in until Penny is literally cornered by her. Dave is escorting an overnight date from his apartment when he is accosted by his landlord. He accuses her of being a sub letter and when Dave tells him she was just there for the night he throws Dave under the bus by complaining about all the guys and girls he and Max have staying over. “How many girls” she asks. “A lot,” landlord replies though Dave tries to downplay it. He then hits on her and when she turns him down accuses Dave of blowing it for him. Dave complains to Max about it, but Max is busy touting his new invention, a trashcan stove where he’s been cooking a brisket for the last 18 hours. When Dave points out the fumes from it will probably kill them in their sleep, Max is nonplussed. Penny now insists that she has to stay with Penny and Brad because of her lie.

Brad is more upset by the lie of the lake house being small. Penny insists she can’t tell the truth about not wanting to have tea with her because she wants to be thought of as being nice because people like them can’t be mean. “The only people who can get away with being mean and with it are rock stars, brain surgeons and Mr. Phil.” “You mean Dr. Phil,” Jane corrects. “Come on,” Penny replies. “It’s a PhD. Everybody calm down.” In the meantime, Alex has chosen to bunk with Dave and Max for the lie. “It’ll be like Three’s Company,” she insists. “I’ll adorable Chrissy, Max will be hysterical Jack and you’ll be Janet.” “I’m not Janet,” Dave pouts. “Classic Janet,” Max and Alex say in unison. This when landlord shows up looking for the girl he saw come up, but they’ve made Alex hide. When he finds her purse, Max says it’s his because he’s gay. “Are you sure? Because I’ve had my eye on you and you don’t seem very gay to me.” After he leaves Max and Alex share their love of this being like classic sitcom set up and again. Brad is stretching to jog when Childhood Friend surprises him and asks why he’s not at the lake house. Like with Penny, every subsequent question from leads to another lie—and a step backwards.

This results in Brad being pushed back into the bushes and now Jane is pregnant. Jane insists she’s not going to go along with this lie because unlike Brad and Penny she doesn’t care if people think she isn’t nice. Childhood Friend comes up and even Jane is bowled over by her insistence and even she begins lying saying that Alex is throwing her shower the next day. It’s early because “Serbian tradition. We never know when we’re going to have to pack up and murder a populace.” Now Jane finds herself trapped in fake baby shower.

Now its Alex’s turn to refuse to go along with this, though she likes that Penny insists she’s the only one childlike enough to believe it could work. Penny convinces her that if she doesn’t she won’t be seen as nice and Alex agrees to go along with and wonders what penis-shaped things she should get despite Penny pointing out it’s not a bachelorette party. Childhood Friend then shows up and Penny hides. Childhood Friend mistakes Alex’s poor lying for a lack of enthusiasm and thinks it’s because she turned down the world’s greatest guy. “John Krazsinsky?” “No, Dave.” Now it’s Alex’s turn to be subject to walking interrogation that results in lies and her big lies turn out to be being a lesbian and Dave is dying. When Alex goes to tell Dave about her lie she runs into the landlord which leads to an odd conversation about her being a bottle blonde. He asks her out and after she refuses Max points out Chrissy would have led him on until he fixed the stove.

Alex insists life is not like a sitcom which leads to them bolting inside when they see Childhood Friend on the street. Now it’s Dave’s turn to insist he won’t go along with the lie and while he does tell her he’s not dying, she refuses to believe him. Max volunteers a lie about losing all his money to Bernie Madoff so he can feel included. At Brad and Jane’s, Penny admits things have gotten out of control and thinks the solution isn’t to come clean, but get their stories straight. She used to keep her lies together with in a “Greetings Feline” notepad because she couldn’t afford “Hello Kitty”. Jane insists she won’t go along, but Max points out that she enjoys being the center of attention more than anyone and Brad enjoys improv and tiny clothes. The landlord busts Max with the trashcan stove, but Max wiggles out of it by offering up Alex and invites him to the baby shower. When Dave insists he can’t go along with it, Max then locks him in their loft elevator and leaves seemingly pretty much.

The fake baby shower is in full swing with professional seat fillers pretending to Jane’s co-workers, a delighted Brad who insists he’s keeping the baby clothes and Alex who thinks being a lesbian means dressing like Ellen and dancing her way into the room. Things start to go off the rails when the landlord shows up and Brad and Jane begin fighting about her breast-feeding and whether or not she’ll return to work. Finally Dave shows up insisting he’s not dying. Penny confesses it was all because she didn’t want to have tea and Childhood Friend says she doesn’t want to have tea with anyone who doesn’t want to have it with her. The landlord pops up declaring his willingness to have tea with her and they go off together. Penny decides she’s learned a lesson about lying from all this while Brad and Jane have learned they really want a lake house. Max makes a commercial for his “Trashstove TM” with an unwilling Dave and burned hands, which the titles insist, are unrelated to the stove. The episode ends.

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Warning: Happy Endings season 2 episode 20 guide may contain spoilers
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