The Conners Season 3 Episode 5 Review: Protest, Drug Test and One Leaves the Nest
Everyone was protesting something on The Conners Season 3 Episode 5, but despite all of the strong beliefs and good intentions, the rent still needed to get paid.
What was most surprising was the happenings at Wellman Plastics and how Becky and Darlene reacted to them.
It was Darlene's response that bewildered me. For someone with the goal of becoming a supervisor at the factory so she can better support her family, Darlene didn't seem to register how a drug test could derail that for her.
The Conners talk about getting high regularly. Becky finds Louise's weed hidden in her moisturizer jar. Harris has spoken more than once about buying her own drugs, and now Ben and Darlene were getting high on edibles while hanging out in the driveway.
Even if the drugs are legal in their particular state, there are consequences to using them, similar if not worse than drinking alcohol.
I don't blame Wellman Plastics for instituting a drug policy. Someone who is impaired could get seriously injured or injure someone else working on the line.
But having someone you work with, whether it is a manager or another co-worker, watch you pee in a cup seems like a violation of privacy. I assume an outside clinic would perform such tests, but maybe it's different in different places.
That Becky reached out to Robin, believing the boss she detested might be an addict and need help, showed a lot of maturity on Becky's part.
And knowing how Becky felt about her, it took a lot of trust from Robin to share that she was trans with Becky and why she didn't want everyone she worked with to know the truth.
Robin's desire to hold onto some privacy had nothing to do with how she saw herself, but how many in the world would see and treat her.
It’s not worth the PTSD. That happens a lot in our community. Movies like Ace Ventura where all the men vomit because they find out the woman is trans doesn’t make you want to share stuff.Robin
Trans people have been treated as easy jokes in both entertainment and real life for far too long. They've been openly mocked for an easy laugh, and it's pitiful that it's taken our society this long to realize how wrong that is.
It wasn't very clear how Jackie was able to spend so much time at the factory. Yes, the feeling of nostalgia was fun, and delivering sandwiches during the staff lunch hour made sense, but how could she take so much time off from the Lunchbox to be a part of the protest?
And please tell me she washed her hands after hanging out on the bathroom floor.
But it was Harris' idealism running headlong into the practicality of living that caused the real drama.
Harris: Look at that wall of moms out there protecting their kids at the front of the protest line. I mean, they’re out there taking beanbag rounds to the face and you won’t even get up to get me a soda.
Darlene: That’s because their kids are out there protesting not leading the Occupy the Couch and Bitch movement.
I don't blame Harris for wanting to be involved in the protests. It feels good to stand up for something you believe in and do so with other like-minded people. It can give someone a sense of control over the world they don't normally feel.
However, unless you are independently wealthy or have well-off family members willing to pay your bills, even protestors have rent to cover.
I know it sucks but poor people can’t afford to quit their jobs to make things better.Darlene
Harris has a job she enjoys, yet she was so swept up in the movement that she was willing to give that up, at least for a short while.
When you're poor and don't have a job, your status can quickly change to homeless, and not even youthful idealism can make that seem fun.
Harris returned home with a check for the rent and a boatload of anger to unload on her family. That she went off on Darlene wasn't a surprise, but it was her animosity towards Dan that shocked me.
Harris isn't a child, she's a young adult, and she wants to be treated like an adult. Like it or not, paying bills is part of that.
Yes, there are plenty of young people her age who get to go to college, many of them partying while doing so all on mommy and daddy's dime.
That Harris' circumstances are different does not give her the right to scream and belittle her grandfather, and I was relieved that Darlene was there to tell her so.
But it was Dan's own words that stopped Harris cold...
Dan: You think I’m not ashamed that I have to ask you. I hate that I have to ask you.
Darlene: Dad, you do not need to apologize.
Dan: Yes, I do. I get why you’re angry. I’m angry too. You want to know why I’m angry? Cause your grandmother told me to buy life insurance and I didn’t. If I had I could just throw my broke ass off a damn roof and you wouldn’t have to worry about anything.
Dan isn't someone who asks for help; he's the person who helps everyone else. Having to take money from his kids and grandkids to keep a roof over their heads is demoralizing for him. That's why he nearly lost the house before agreeing to accept their help.
Harris is young and frequently only sees things from her own point of view. Her grandfather has worked hard his entire life, and now in his 60s, he has no material wealth to show for it and is still struggling to take care of his family.
Dan breaking down the way he did shocked Harris into realizing that this situation isn't just about her. Hopefully, that's a wake-up call that will benefit her going forward.
Thankfully, Dan had Louise there to comfort him.
I couldn't blame Louise for wanting to move back to her own place. The Conner family is a lot to take on a good day, and I can't imagine being locked in one house with all of them indefinitely.
I thought that Ben and Darlene would be my favorite couple this season, and I do enjoy them, but it turns out that it's Dan and Louise's interactions that I find the most heartwarming.
Now it's your turn, TV Fanatics!
Do you take issue with all of the casual drug use in the Conner household?
Was Darlene right or wrong when she attempted to cover Harris' part of the rent so she could continue to hang out at the protest and risk her job?
And how do you feel about Wellman Plastics' new mandatory supervised drug testing?
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