This post contains details from The Goldbergs episode that aired May 13.
No one in the world has more affection than Beverly Goldberg. Just ask her. Using glitter glue on lunch sacks, throwing kisses at the school bus, and telling her schmoopies that she loves them is just a day in the life. Her family can take it or leave it. And if they leave it, she’ll shove it down their throats with the tenderness of a mother who will do anything for her children.
Murray is a different story. His terms of endearment include grunting and shouting “moron” in various octaves. You can imagine Beverly’s irritation when she throws a going away party for Erica, and Murray is unable to share his feelings. Murray thinks Beverly shares enough for the both of them. Besides, he’s the provider. What better way to show love than with a roof over their head?
Beverly reminds Murray that Erica will soon have a new roof, and he better tell his little girl how he feels before it’s too late. Murray concedes, makes the long walk down the hallway to her room (where he never goes), and has a heart-to-heart with Erica. It didn’t even matter that he mumbled the words “I love you.” It was extremely sweet.
Naturally, Erica is under the assumption that he’s either dying or he’s spent her college fund. Murray explodes. Doesn’t she appreciate the roof he has provided for her head all these years? A stunned Erica thanks him as he leaves the room. It stings Murray that she doesn’t say “I love you” back.
Clearly Erica gets her lack of sentiment from her father. As for the boys—they are cut from the same cloth as Beverly. Adam is ready to tell his girlfriend Dana that he loves her through baked goods. After Barry warns Adam not to toss the L-bomb too soon, Adam opts for an adoring letter he will hand deliver to Dana’s locker.
The next day, Barry’s love theory is put to the test when Lainey promises to bring him a burrito after cheerleading practice. Barry is touched that she knows Mexican food is the way to his heart. He inadvertently tells Lainey he loves her. Then he stands as frozen as the after school treat Lainey has just promised.
He plays it cool (read: no he didn’t) and runs to Coach’s office to ask a favor. I was hoping for another dance lesson, but that ship has apparently sailed. Barry asks permission to become a cheerleader so he can woo his girl back. Coach compromises and hands him a rather large Quaker man’s head. Say hello to the new creepy mascot!
One Goldberg crisis averted. Now it’s Adam’s turn. Once he saw how Lainey iced Barry out after his profession of love, Adam is desperate to get his love letter back from Dana’s locker. Coach appreciates that the Goldbergs “feel hard,” so he intervenes—with a surprise locker search for drugs. Coach secures the love letter, confirms that Dana isn’t using, delivers the folded note to Adam, and heads back to his office in his shorty shorts.
Back at the house, Beverly resorts to bribing Erica with boots and a jacket. It turns out the price of love is $57 plus tax. Erica lays it on a little thick with Murray. He becomes suspicious and quickly figures out that his affection has been bought with purple leather goods. Morons all around!
Speaking of morons, Barry’s life is officially in danger. His school’s rival team has promised to take down the mascot at the big game, and as the new Fighting Quaker, the rebellious students will probably break every bone in his body. Barry doesn’t care. His heart bone is already broken, thanks to Lainey.
When she realizes he’s about to commit mascot suicide, Lainey admits that she was scared to say “I love you” back to Barry. She loves him enough to know that she can’t watch what is about to happen. Ever the moron, Barry chooses to face the angry mob of athletic fans because love can conquer anything. As Adam watches his brother’s gigantic Quaker head take hit after hit, he realizes that he is ready to take a risk too.
The epic ‘80s love anthem “If You Leave” by OMD provides the perfect soundtrack for Adam to race on his bike to Dana’s house. She opens the door and he professes his love. And she responds with a heartfelt “I love you” back. Sadly, she follows up this milestone moment with terrible news: Dana might be moving to Seattle. She hands Adam his beloved Green Lantern ring and makes him promise he will give it back if she returns the first day of school in the fall. Schmoopy needs a hug!
The next day, the entire family gathers at the terminal gate to say good-bye to Erica. Beverly and the boys cry, while Murray stares at his daughter. He tells her he will miss his Peanut. For Erica, there’s more love packed into that pet name than anything else he could have ever said. There may be hope for these two heartless freaks after all!
Thank goodness the ‘80s were totally awesome, because The Goldbergs was renewed for the fall. There’s plenty of material for season 3. Get ready for rad music, questionable fashion choices, and extremely big hair.