A Different World (1987–1993): Season 4, Episode 16 - A Word in Edgewise - full transcript

Kim is afraid that Matthew's involvement in his Drama Studies makes them an incompatible couple, but Matthew and the issues going on with Dwayne and Whitley soon prove it will be ok.

Mm, hot biscuits!

Mr. Gaines,
your wife, velma

is lucky to have
a wizard like you

in the kitchen.

I am encouraging my Dwayne

to learn the art
of croissant baking.

I tell him, "Dwayne"...

He loves the way
I say his name...

"Dwayne, a continental breakfast
would be tres romantic.

"Hot croissants,
a frothy capuccino

and my scintillating


Whitley, are you still
groveling for extra money?

Of course.
Ever since my father

ripped the very bread
from my mouth

it's a wonder I go on.

Whitley, they're having
a psychology experiment

over at the medical lab.

I don't know what kind

but they're offering

$25 an hour.


Hi, Mr. Gaines.

Oh, you don't say.

Mr. Gaines.

Mr. Gaines?

Oh, is she gone?

You were wearing ear plugs?

The mouth of the south.

That's what she is.

£ I know my parents loved me £

£ stand behind me
come what may £

£ I know now that I'm ready £

£ for I finally heard them say £

£ it's a different world £

£ than where you come from £

£ yes, it is now, yeah £

£ here's our chance to make it £

£ and if we focus on our goal £

£ you can dish it,
we can take it £

£ hey, just remember
that you've been told £

£ it's a different world £

£ it's a different world £

£ it's a different world £

£ than where you come from £

£ ooh £

£ than where you come from. £

"to be or not to be,
that is the question.

"Whether 'tis nobler in mind

"to suffer
the slings and arrows...

I can't believe
that whitley Gilbert!

"slings and arrows..."

What about guns and clubs?

What are you talking about?

I cannot believe
what I just saw.

Do you know whitley Gilbert
continues to wear furs

knowing how they kill
those little animals?

Some people should wake up

and ask themselves
some heavy questions.

"To be or not to be..."

How can I get through
to whitley?

"That is the question."

What you have to do
is empathize.


with that Bambi killer?

Actors have to identify
with anything...

Even inanimate objects.

We do exercises
in sensory awareness.

Okay, show me one.

I'm trying to prepare
for my midterm.

Matthew, come on.

Go on, do it for
those little, furry babies.

Okay, we'll do one together.

All right, sit down here

shut up, and close your eyes.

Now what?

Let's imagine that
we are... rocks.




You pick one.

We are kernels of corn...

The hopi Indian symbol
for life at its purest.


Now we are one
with the universe.

Oh, Matthew, this is so intense.

It's going to get more intense.

Watch out, Freddie

they're putting us
in a popcorn popper.

We're losing our place
in the ecosystem!

Here comes the hot air!

We're popping!
We're popping!





Here comes the butter!

Worse, it's butter flavored oil!

It's melting... melting...


Uh... professor Burton
I'd like you to meet

my roommate Freddie
and her cousin Matthew.

Professor Burton is head
of the biology department.

You'll have to excuse us.

We were just being corn.

It's my first time.

I'm an actor.

Of course you are.

Matthew's a theater arts
major at Avery.

Oh, good, good.

Well, Kim, why don't
we take a look

at that slide culture?

The microscope is over here.

This is our cue to exit.

Nice to meet you, professor.

You know,
I do an awesome amoeba.

Quiet, please.

Quiet down, pretty please!

Do you all want to eat?!

I thought you would.

I got a surprise
for you all tomorrow.

We have some actors who
gonna come down to
perform for y'all.

We have some deaf actors

from the national theatre
of the deaf.

Why are they coming to see us?

Because I want you all
to learn something.

These people are the best
at what they do.

So, the next time you all
come up to me...

"Mr. Oakes, I can't do that

because my head's too small."

Or, "Mr. Oakes, I can't do it

because my weave's
too tight."

I want you to think
about these people.

It's not easy
to live without sound.


At least some sounds.

I just experienced
the most humiliating thing.

You know that psychiatry
study I signed up for?

Well, it was a study
in verbal dynamics.

And you didn't last ten minutes.

How did you know?

They said I was
the verbal equivalent

of Niagara Falls.

That's not true, baby.

Victoria falls in Zimbabwe
is much bigger.

That's funny...


Just what are you
hinting at, Dwayne?

In plain English,
s'il vous plait.

Baby, I love you

but sometimes it's
hard to get a kiss in

because your lips is always

flip-flap, flip-flap, flip-flap.

It can get a lot harder.

Oh, whitley.

Hey, Walter, it's all set up.

They arrived this morning
and they are rehearsing.

They? Who?

The national theatre
of the deaf.

Matthew studied with them
learning how to sign.

My friend c.J. Taught
me, he's a member of
the company.

You'd like to meet him, Kim.

I can't sign.

Well, try this.


Then you can smile.

I've seen you do it.

Yes, you have.

Well, there it is, folks.

You saw it here.

You're hopeless.

I know all about sign language.

This is the sign
for "I... love... you."

I love you too.

I wasn't talking to you.

Now, in sign language,
people get their names

from their personal

Like, Freddie's big hair...

Or, uh, my nonexistent butt.

The sign for whitley Gilbert
should be...

Oh, Hardy-har.

Whoop it on up.

Who thinks that should be
the sign for moi?

Baby, you have the gift of gab.

They're jealous.

You think I can't
keep my mouth shut?

Not to save your life.

I'll make you a bet.

I will keep my mouth shut
for a whole day

and you will serve me
breakfast for a week.

Can I get in on this?

This means no talking,
no writing things down

no communication of any kind.

You, for 24 hours?

I will lead my day

just like any other,
except in silence.


You hear this, man?

I say let the bet begin.

It's 3:00.

Any last words?

No, I have nothing
whatsoever to say

especially to you...

You of all people...

Who will be begging
to hear my voice...

On your Mark, get set...

Shut up!

Whitley, whatever
your day was like

I don't want to hear it.

I just need a little
peace and quiet, okay?


Whitley, how come

ain't no sound coming out
of your mouth?

Are you okay?

Just give me a sign.

Moan, whine, or say
something insensitive.

Come in.

Hey, jaleesa.

Whitley, you left these
in the pit.

Something very strange
is going on here.

Enjoy it while it lasts.

Hey, whit.

What do you say, huh?

Will somebody please tell me
what's going on?


You didn't tell jaleesa
about the bet?

What bet?

The bet that she can
last an entire 24 hours

till 3:00
tomorrow afternoon

with her mouth in neutral.

You mean to tell me

that she can't say anything

for the next 24 hours?

Not a single peep!

Thank you, lord!


I can't hear you.


Oh, hold on just a second.

Whitley, it's your father.


He says he's writing you a check

and he wants to know

how much you want.

Okay, okay.

I'll take care of it.

Hello, Mr. Gilbert.

Two dollars.

Yeah, uh-huh.

Ha! I got you!

What did you say?

I can't hear you!

What? What?

Come on, Matthew.

I want to be able to talk
to your deaf friends.

Signing is complicated.

You can't learn it overnight.

That's okay.

I wrote down what I want to say.


"Do not be afraid.

I come in peace."

Freddie, they're deaf
not extra-terrestrials.

"I know what it's like
to be misunderstood.

"I have spent most of my life

"watching other people
move their lips

wondering what in the hell
they're saying."

Teach me how to say that.

There's one sign that takes care
of the whole thing.

What does that mean?

Deaf power.


I love that.

Deaf power.

Ooh, Kim.


The national theatre of the deaf

is performing for
the outreach kids tomorrow.

Can you come?


I've got to finish my lab
for professor Burton.

Matt, I have to say this.

I was a little embarrassed

by the way you were acting
in front of her.

Ooh, baby,
you don't know
good popcorn

when you see it.

Never mind.

The guns are loaded.

Do I get a last request?

It's just that you have
a tendency

to make a spectacle of yourself.

As an actor, that's my job.

Don't you take
anything seriously?

Yes, acting.

I got an "a"
in sensory awareness.

You get graded on that?

I'm getting a message here.

You don't really respect
what I do.

It just seems

that with everything
going on in this world

popping and melting
is frivolous.

Art is as important as science.

How about taking a minute
to look up from that microscope

and enjoy life?

I do enjoy it.

I will enjoy it a lot more

when I'm a doctor,
saving people's lives.

Well, Dr. Reese

what will you
be saving them for?


Hey, c.J., sorry I'm late.



This is my cousin, Freddie.


It's nice to meet you, Freddie.

Matt's told me a lot about you.

But don't worry

I don't believe
everything I hear.

It was a joke, Freddie.

C.j., from a sensory awareness
point of view

if I put myself in your shoes

what would it feel like?

Am I making myself clear?

Uh, no, and I can hear you.

I think I know
what you're saying.

You want to know
what it's like being deaf?

It would be like saying
how it feels to be black.

Or tall.

Or skinny.

I'm not sure I know

how to put that
into words or signs.

How do you live without music?

What are you talking about?

I'm a rapper.

Let's do it.

I call this
"def by temptation."

£ I was born hard of hearing £

£ and that wasn't cool £

£ they thought I was stupid £

£ 'cause I didn't talk
in school £

£ couldn't hear the music,
never Duke of Earl £

£ they thought I was a freak
in my own little world £

£ now things are different £

£ no more disasters £

£ this is the revenge
of the deafmasters £

£ I can't hear you £

£ louder! £

£ now all the girls,
they treat me really nice £

£ so if you want babes,
take this advice £

learn how to see £

£ give them eye contact
and you're home free £

learn how to give £

£ they won't think you're deaf,
they'll think you're sensitive £

learn how to listen £

£ read their lips and they'll
be thinking about kissing £

£ I can't hear you £

£ louder! £

£ I'm at the final phase
of my rapping jam £

£ I want to say a little more
about who I am £

£ here's a plus
that I could rap about £

£ when it's too noisy... £

£ I tune out £

£ but you want to hear
something really absurd? £

£ this was the best rap
I never heard £

£ still can't hear you £

£ louder! £

one more time, one more time!

Hey, hey, come on,
his hands are exhausted.

He wants to know
about the shy girl

that doesn't say anything.

Is she deaf?

No, but she's very
hard of listening.

Can she sign?

Yeah, checks.

-== [ www.OpenSubtitles.org ] ==-

Whitley, I need to talk to you...

A friend.

It's about Matt.

I am so confused.

I mean, he's funny,
he's smart, he's charming

even when I'm furious with him

he can make me laugh

but sometimes he can be
such an overgrown kid.

He doesn't understand
what it's like

to be pre-med and work two jobs.

He doesn't even worry
about the future

the way I do.

Maybe he's right.

Maybe I worry too much...

But I don't think
he worries enough.

Whitley, you're with someone
who is different.

How do you do it?

Why am I asking?

I've seen you two.

He drives you crazy

and you certainly
drive him crazy.

And yet...

You both make it work.

I guess, um, that's because...

You don't try to change him

and he knows
he can't change you.

Do you know something?

You got the right idea!

Oh, whitley, thank you!

I feel so much better.

You know, we should really
talk like this more often.


Hi, Dwayne.

Hey, whitley, it's 3:00!

Hey, baby, didn't you hear
what I said?

You can talk now.

Come on, whitley,
I hate to admit this

but I'm starting to miss
the soft caress

of your sweet voice.




Come on, baby,
kick it to me one time.







I never speak
unless I have something to say.

Do tell.

We can discuss this further

over breakfast...

That you will be serving me.

But whitley...

Ah, please.

I like the strong, silent type.


Hello, couch!

Hello, TV!

Hello, faucet!

£ do-re-mi-fa-sol-la-ti-do! £

these are actors

from the national theatre
of the deaf.

They are going to make sure
you see and hear every word.

The sign for applause is this.

Give them
a warm round of applause.

The camel dances.

A fable for grownups
of all ages.

The camel had her heart set
on becoming a ballet dancer.

To make every movement
a thing of grace and beauty...

That is my one and only desire.

Again and again,
she practiced her pirouettes

her releves and her arabesques.

She repeated
the five basic positions

100 times each day.

She worked for long months

under the hot desert sun.

Her feet were blistered

and her body ached with fatigue.

But not once
did I think of stopping.

Now I am a dancer.

I will announce
a recital and dance

before an invited group
of camel friends and critics.

When the dance was over,
she made a deep bow.

There was no applause.

I must tell you frankly

as a critic and spokescamel
for this group

that you are lumpy and bumpy.

You are baggy and bumpy.

You are like the rest of us

simply a camel.

You are not and never will be

a ballet dancer.


Chuckling and laughing

the audience moved away
across the desert sand.

Ha! Ha! Ha!

How very wrong they are.

I have worked hard.

There can be no doubt
that I am a splendid dancer.

I will dance

and dance just for myself.

That is what she did.

It gave her many years
of pleasure.

Satisfaction comes to those
who please themselves.

Standing ovation.

Translation, please.

You're beautiful.