From the beginning, showrunner Dan Levy has made it clear that homophobia has no place in Schitt’s Creek. His promise to only “show love and tolerance” is put on full display in tonight’s episode when Patrick’s parents come to town and David discovers that Patrick hasn’t come out to them yet. It is easily the best episode of the season. My favorite episodes of Schitt’s Creek are the ones where I find myself both laughing and crying, and “Meet the Parents” does that over and over again. This episode is a precious little nugget of television and we should treasure it always.
It’s Patrick’s birthday! Although David is vehemently opposed to surprise parties, it’s all Patrick has ever wanted (“poor thing”), and so he’s going for it. I mean, that right there says an incredible amount about how much David has grown as a person and how important Patrick is to him. Surprise parties go against everything David believes in, yet here we are. Unfortunately, the biggest surprise turns out to be on David himself.
As an added gift, David secretly invited Patrick’s parents Marcy and Clint to the party. Can we talk about how excited and proud of his son Johnny is when he hears he’s taking this big step in his relationship? The episode’s clear focus is on Patrick and David, but the way Johnny supports his son is also something to celebrate. Sadly, Johnny doesn’t get to spend too much time enjoying the fact that David is moving forward in a healthy, loving relationship because he very quickly, um, steps in it.
Johnny is left with the task of welcoming Marcy and Clint to the motel and getting them settled before the party. He engages in some normal small talk you’d expect when people whose children are dating meet for the first time. But when Johnny starts talking about how at first he was nervous that David and Patrick would mix a business partnership with a romantic one, Marcy and Clint’s faces drop. They were only aware of the business relationship. They’re so upset they simply retreat to their rooms. Johnny’s so upset that he runs to the cafe where David’s having a “site survey for the party” to figure how how much damage he’s done. And you know how much Johnny hates running.
David’s shocked. He assumed they knew about him and Patrick, but it dawns on him that he’s only spoken to Marcy and Clint on the phone at the store. “What, do they just think I’m his business partner?” he asks incredulously. Um, yeah, Johnny and Stevie respond. That’s definitely what they think.
David has to navigate a tough conversation. He has to talk to his boyfriend about why he hasn’t told his parents about them while also dropping the bomb that his parents are currently in town. It takes a little prodding, but Patrick eventually admits the truth. He’s clearly guilt-ridden, but also he’s scared. He’s close with his parents and has a small sliver of fear about this changing things. He also thinks the conversation is one to have in person. David’s nothing but supportive — coming out is a personal thing and Patrick should do it when he’s ready. But, like, also, he’s throwing him a surprise party and his parents are here. There’s really no easy way to say that, best to rip the Band-Aid off, you know? David does not tell Patrick that his parents were just informed that he’s dating David — that might push the emotional guy over the edge — and David even offers to pretend they’re just friends for the evening. David Rose, you freaking angel person.
Patrick’s no slouch either. He doesn’t want to pretend he and David are anything but together. “I owe it to us to tell them,” he says causing a collective swoon. He’s going to tell them at the party.
Okay, so that’s awesome and everything, but there is the tiny fact that they already know and seem pretty upset about it standing in the way. David has to do some more damage control. Season-one David would never be able to handle this. Season-five David does so with aplomb. He visits Marcy and Clint, with a gift basket because of course, fully prepared to talk to them about how their son is the same person he was before. But it turns out, he doesn’t need to. They aren’t upset that their son is gay, they’re upset because their son felt like he couldn’t talk to them. They’re worried they did something wrong to push him away. It’s a wonderful way to turn this storyline on its head. And so they all decide that “the best birthday gift [they] can give him at this point is to keep him in the closet” until the party. David gets how that sounds, but the sentiment is lovely. They want Patrick to be able to come out to his parents on his own terms.
Patrick arrives at his no-longer-a-surprise party and does his duty in pretending like he didn’t know anything about it, and his parents attempt the same when Patrick sits them down and tells them about David. The scene is as heartwarming as you’d expect on this show. Marcy and Clint are just so happy to see their son so happy, and also they really like David, even if they are confused by his clothes. (Everyone is!) Patrick, of course, figures out that his parents already knew, but it doesn’t much matter. The episode ends with David and Patrick slow dancing and saying, “I love you,” and I don’t know about you, but I’m going to go listen to “The Best” on repeat a few or one hundred times.
The Wig Wall
• Although it wasn’t the focus of the episode, Alexis forcing Moira to attend a soap opera convention for money was hilarious and the perfect storyline to balance the emotional episode. I mean, do you think Moira was happy to sign autographs for “pale, dewy-faced salamander people” and a “gaggle of asymmetrical faces?” No, she hated it. But the money — especially for foot pics — is good.
• When Moira tries to get out of the convention by telling her daughter that she has some self-worth left, Alexis reminds her mom that she did an adult-diaper commercial. Moira justifies it by explaining that it was in Japan and she did it “in full-face Kabuki makeup.” Tapes, please!
• Moira only warms up to the idea once she runs into Gloria Gregson, an Emmy Award–winning soap actress, who reveals the perks of the convention circuit. Apparently Gloria spent 37 seasons playing Grace on Touched by Grace, a show about “a hot-headed nurse who healed people with her sexual touch.”
• One of Moira’s excuses for not doing the convention is to protect Alexis from the dark side of the industry. “You took me to the Playboy mansion when I was 7,” Alexis reminds her.
• “Now, when I planned that Casablanca-themed party for your mother’s 40th, I had to quarantine the camels for a month.”
• David waits until the day of the surprise party to tell his family about it because they can’t keep a secret. Moira immediately proves this point when we learn that she wasn’t supposed to reveal the ending to her Crows movie, but told Alexis about it as soon as she returned home and gave Johnny the script. It ends with a “crow-pocalypse” in case you were wondering.
• “At 9 a.m.? A little early for a character assassination.”
• Johnny is beyond relieved to hear the real reason Clint and Marcy are upset is because now “no one has to feel bad about how this information came out.” David’s facial reaction to that sentence is perfection.
• “So tonight there will be a surprise and there will be tears, even if they’re just my own.”