A Different World (1987–1993): Season 5, Episode 12 - Twelve Steps of Christmas - full transcript

Whitley and Dwayne struggle with their first holiday apart. The Taylor Family is having a conflict of interest over Christmas traditions. Therapist, Dr. Langhorne advises everyone to holiday cheer.

One of aunt Pearl's fruitcakes.

I still have the one
from last year.

I'm using it as a door stop.

Come in.

Okay, mama.

I can't wait.

Love you.

Merry Christmas.

What is it now?

Well, I'm on my way to Baltimore

so I thought I'd give you
your Christmas gift now!

Merry Christmas.

Miss Lena, you shouldn't have.

But, since you did...

It's called
"dogs playing poker."

It's a collector's item.

Well, it is...
It's very authentic.

Just screams steak house.

I knew you'd like it.

Yes, um... I have something
for you too, miss Lena.

Merry Christmas.


Uh, fruitcake! Ha!

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Just remember, miss Lena

it's always better
to give than to receive.

So true.

Yo, yo, yo, yo, yo!

Merry Christmas, roomie!

Oh, ha-ha!

Fruitcake, ha-ha.

Hey, man.


Merry Christmas to you.

Oh, yeah...

It's a fruitcake.

Where's crystal?

The bus is leaving
for chimney rock.

Skiing sounds perfect.

Hi, kimmie. How..?


Who let Dwayne in here?

He went to get crystal.

Where are they going?

I don't know, man.


Chimney rock ski resort.

He never took me skiing.

Never, ever, once.

Don't forget to ski

Lucifer's leap!

The big-headed, elf-looking...


Merry Christmas.

Oh, Ron!

Love you, babe.

This baby does not
like spicy food.

Baby, you had cornflakes.

That's what I mean...
They're too rich.

I need these antacids.




What is that?

This is our Christmas tree.

I thought we were going
to go as a family

and pick out a tree together.

But this tree
is a Taylor tradition.

Hey, it's pinkie!

Aw, yeah!

Yeah, it's pink all right.

What's the matter, huh?

It's just, I had a different
kind of tree in mind.

You know, something real...
And green.

But the boy is so fond
of this tree.

Yeah, yeah, I remember
when mom picked it out.

And then we put tinsel on it...

But this year I thought
we'd celebrate kwanzaa...

The African-American celebration

of the first fruits.

Anything but pinkie over here.

Oh, baby, don't...

Don't dis the tree like that.

I am so sorry, baby.

I didn't realize
it was so sensitive.

But this baby wants
a green tree.

So, whitley, when are you
going to fly to New York?

I couldn't get a flight out
till the 26th.

Don't worry.
Ho-Jo's is having

an all-you-can-eat
fried clam buffet

on Christmas day.


Don't say clams.

Uh, whitley, why don't you
come over to our house

for Christmas dinner?

I couldn't intrude, jaleesa.

This is your first Christmas
together as a family.

Well, we'll see about that.

Um, whitley...
What was that name

of the therapist
that you saw last year?

Doctor langhorn?

Jaleesa, don't worry about me.

I'll be fine.

It's just the holiday talking...

Billie Holiday.

Well, we'll be expecting

to see you
at the house at 2:00.

Could I bring something?

No. I'm cooking.


Let me bring something.

Oh, fruitcake!

But you already gave me a gift.

Merry Christmas again,
Mr. Gaines.

Well, I'll just put him
with the others.

Ham is not a traditional meal.

Turkey is traditional.

You know ham gives me heartburn.

What doesn't?

If we celebrate kwanzaa

meat won't be an issue.

We'll eat harvest fruits.

Uh-huh, and I'll just sit
down to the holiday table

and carve
the holiday banana, huh?

A banana makes
more sense than a ham.

Can we please

have this discussion at home?

Well, Brad

how about a holiday toast?

Yeah, sure, sure.

A peaceful and joyous Christmas

to you and yours
from me and mine.

Oh, that's pretty good.

Excuse me, wamsutta.

I've got a priority call.

What happened?

Shouldn't you
be toasting toddies

with crystal right about now?

She asked me
about last Christmas

and I got carried away
talking about whitley.

I had an abbreviated vacation.

What's the abbreviation
for idiot?

Uh, wait a minute.

Does that mean
you're not going to Brooklyn?

I would, but my parents

are going on a cruise
for Christmas.

Isn't that lovely.

Hey, Mrs. Gaines.

Last Christmas
Vernon gave me slippers

a shoe tree and odor eaters.

Well, it did have a theme.

A cheap theme.

Why don't you join us
for Christmas dinner, huh?

I'd love to.

Thank you, colonel.

Oh! And let me
ask you something.

I mean, do you ever...
Well, around the holidays

uh, get a craving
for... Ham?


You do?

Excellent, excellent.

Jaleesa, honey...

Dwayne is going to join us
for Christmas dinner.

And guess what?

He enjoys ham.

Uh, well,
that's just wonderful, Dwayne.

We are very glad
to have you join us.

Honey, can I speak to you,


Uh, honey, now

this ham thing was his idea.

Forget the ham, okay?

I already invited whitley.

Tell her she can't come.

Tell him he can't come!

You tell her...

Hi, merry Christmas.

Merry Christmas.


What is he doing here?

And without a body cast?

I'm not sure, whitley.


He got dumped on the slopes.


How are the holidays
treating you, Dwayne?

Can't complain.
How about you?

Couldn't be better.

An exclusive party
at e.H. Wright

New York for new year's

and Christmas dinner
at the Taylor's.

Oh, well,
then I'll see you there.

Excuse me?

Uh, whitley!

Uh, Brad just invited Dwayne.

And I just found out

that jaleesa invited whitley.

Oh, that's nice... ha!

Yeah, that is very nice.

So nice.

Mr. Gaines?


Merry Christmas.


Someone should have one.

Oh, and a merry Christmas
to you too!

Merry Christmas!

Thank you.

The point is, doctor

I give and give and give
and get nothing in return.

All I wanted was parquet floors
for my Barbie's dream house.

It must be hard being buried
up to your neck in self-pity.

Oh, it is.

Why me?

Listen, this is
the holiday season...

My busiest time of the year.

I've got
three nervous breakdowns

and a kleptomaniac before noon.

Quickly, look at these cards

and tell me what you see.



A park with me on the bench.

Do you know
what your problem is?

I always felt that...

You are living in a spotlight

but this is not Broadway.

You've got to step down
off of that stage and change

back into reality before you
drop into the orchestra pit

of despair!

Ooh, that was good.

- Doctor...
- Wait a minute.

I've got to write that down.

Doctor, how do you propose
I go to dinner with Dwayne

without ripping him
from limb to limb?


You're still in love with him.


I just won't go to dinner.

Are you afraid you'd go there

and find out that
he doesn't love you anymore?

You can't control that.

The only thing you can control

is how you feel...

Not how you feel

but how you deal
with what you feel

that is real.

You've got to relax, relate
and release into reality.

Come on, relax, relate, release.

Relax, relate, release.

Relax, relate, release.

Relax, relate, release.


Ooh... I feel
so much better.

I'll bill you.

Thank you, doctor.




I'm just here
dropping off a present

for a very dear friend of mine.

Here you go, doc.

Oh, fruitcake.

It's fruitcake.

I'm going to say this
one more time.

Let go.

Give up those preconceived ideas

about what you think
should happen.

We're sorry.

Yes, y'all are.

You're a new family.

You've got to relax,
relate, and release

into this relationship.

I guess we didn't know
that much about each other

when we got married.

That's true.

What about me?

You didn't know her at all.

You're not listening.

Now, you love each other.

Be the family you already are.

Have Turkey, have ham

have a fish fry... I don't care.

Get a grip and let go.

You've got to create

new traditions for yourselves.

The only thing y'all
should be holding onto

is one another.

Hey, hey...

She's loosing it.

Hey, doctor.

Oh, touchdown!

This is wonderful.

Excuse me

while I take this call.


Oh, hi, honey.

It was my understanding that
she was staying at the hotel.

She what?

Oh, no, no, not in my kitchen.

If your mama
wants to cook a goose

she can do it at her own house.

I am calm.

That's enough of that, damn it.

Doctor, how can we thank you?

Oh, I'll bill you.

Well, doctor,
you've been so helpful.

Please, join us for our
first family Christmas.

That is so kind

but I never mix personal
and professional.

Now get out of my office
and on with your lives.

Hey, dad,
this looks like whitley.

We have a dining room.

It's called that for a reason.

The baby wants to eat
where the decorations are.

Yo, dad, relax, relate, release.

Release and relax.

Now, what is wrong
with the "Messiah"?

Oh, come on, honey.

The boy enjoys this so much.

Come on, now.

What happened to the chipmunks?

I'm too old for them.

Besides, this is
music for kwanzaa.

Yeah, that's nice,
but the chipmunks...

Okay, we'll listen
to them later.

Yeah, okay.

You're never too old
for the chipmunks.

Hey, colonel.

Hey, Dwayne.

Merry Christmas, Dwayne!

Merry Christmas.

Am I the first one here?

Yes, you are.

I don't think I can do this.

So I'm going to...

Oh, stop it.

She's not here.

Oh, hi.

Merry Christmas, whitley!

- Hello.
- Come on in.

Well, hello.

Merry Christmas.

Let me take your coat.

Well, jaleesa...

What eclectic holiday decor
you have.

Well, thank you.

We're combining traditions,
right, son?

Oh, yes.

Kwanzaa yenu iwe na heri.

Thank you, honey.

I just had it done.

Stuffed mushroom cap, anyone?

Usually I'm allergic to fungus

but I will risk the rash.

Want to watch the kwanzaa
candlelight ceremony?

Only 45 minutes long.

Son, it's time to eat.

That's a good idea.

Excuse me.

Weren't you supposed
to be skiing?

Ahem! Ahem!

Terrence, why don't you
tell us more about kwanzaa?

Oh, yeah.

Created back in 1966
by Dr. Maulana karenga.

Hey, here we go.

Turkey, Turkey.

Honey, that Turkey
looks a little pale.

Yeah, I can see the veins in it.

Well, I wasn't expecting
us to be eating this soon.

I'll go put it back in.

I'll help you.

Me too.

Maybe we should sit down.

Good idea.

I thought you were going
to wear your nice suit.

Well, that Turkey

it's just going to be
a few more minutes.

So I thought
we could start with these.

These gherkins are delicious.

Honey, we just need
a little something

to take the edge off the brine.

Well, I...

I am doing
the very best that I can.

It's her hormones.


Here we go.

We have some crackers

and some gravy.

And you didn't mind my hormones
five months ago.

I'll get it.

Merry Christmas.

I decided to take you up
on your kind offer.

I hope I'm not intruding.

Dr. Langhorn.
Dr. Langhorn.

We have another guest.

There's no more crackers.

Merry Christmas.

I think I know everyone.

Yours is the only face
I don't recognize.

Dr. Langhorn,
this is Dwayne Wayne.

Dwayne Wayne.

Oh, you're not at all
the way I imagined.

You've been talking about me?

Don't flatter yourself.

Why don't I go get that Turkey.

Excuse me.

Why don't I help you.

Have a glass of wine.

Dwayne, it's perfectly natural

for us to talk about the people
that we love.

I guess that's why

she talks about herself
all the time.

So let's talk about you, Dwayne.

How was your ski trip?

That is my business.

Stop trying to run my life.

I've never tried to.

Oh, you ran your life

called it mine
and ran your mouth for us both.

I only wanted
what was best for you.

You just blame me

because you couldn't handle
a real woman.

You show me a real women,
and I'll handle her all right.

Flag on the play.

Unnecessary roughness.

Just because you children
are not together

there's no reason
that you can't be friends.

Unless of course,
you never were friends.

We used to be.

Before we got involved.


Colonel Taylor:
I don't understand.

Uh, the biscuits
are just a little toasty.

I hear that charcoal aids
in the digestion of food.

This is an old family recipe.

It's holiday
jell-o mold supreme.

I don't want any.

Here, I'll go get the straws.

I also called
the butterball hotline

and they said it would be
just another four more hours.

Ham would have been ready
by now.


All I wanted was to have
a perfect Christmas.

There's no such thing
as a perfect Christmas.

There's no such thing
as a perfect anything.

Although these pickles
do come close.

You're here with your friends
and family.

At least you're not celebrating
Christmas dinner with strangers.

Wait a minute.

Just why are you here anyway?

Because of my mangy, meddling,
dried up, bald-headed

no-cooking mother-in-law!

Her goose casserole
went flying out that back door

and I was right behind it.


Doctor, relax

relate, release.

Relax, relate, release.

Relax, relate, release.

Oh, this is so
unprofessional of me

but when my husband saw me
running out that back door

he didn't even try to stop me.


Doctor, maybe
you should discuss this

with your husband instead of us.

Yes, you know

sometimes the people
that we love the most

get on our nerves the most

but we can't give up on them.

You can't control
the way he feels

you can only deal...

Oh, honey, hush up.

Thank you.

Y'all have helped me so much.

I got my own family
I can hold onto.

Girl friend, put that Turkey
in the microwave

for 20 minutes.

Do the stuffing on the stove.

Merry Christmas.

Merry Christmas.

O, holy night.

O, holy night.



Oh, honey, I just ruined
our first family Christmas.

Yes, you did


Well, don't worry
about it, honey.

There are going
to be so many more.

Look at what we're under.

We're under the mistletoe.

Thank you.

You all right?


Uh, what..?

What are you doing?

I'm starting a new tradition.

Take out!

I heard that.

Now you're talking.

Pass the egg rolls, please.

Here you go.

Well, Dwayne, thank you
for walking me home.

No problem.

Merry Christmas, whit.

Oh, wait.

This is the bag
colonel Taylor gave you.

That's for you.


It's fruitcake!

Whitley, I love fruitcake.


Hey, whitley...

You think we can be friends?


I hope so.

Have a merry Christmas, Dwayne.

You have
a merry Christmas too, whit.