Joan of Arcadia (2003–2005): Season 1, Episode 4 - The Boat - full transcript

God asks Joan to build a boat. Meanwhile Will deals with the killings of two police officers and Kevin attempts to shed his past.

The very words 'homework assignments'
suggest a fascist hierarchy...

They assign us a task,

no discussion, no explanation.
What is that?

Dude, she wants to pass.

Do you think it's funny
to call me dude?

Adam calls everyone dude.

Well, stop.
It's totally pre-millennial.

Uh, wait.
What's the new dude?

Try saying yo at the end of a sentence.

We're stinking rich, yo.

You're gonna turn it in, aren't you?

A willing pawn of the power elites.

More like, you ever have the feeling
you're being watched?

She's right. We are under surveillance
80% of the time.

Oh, excuse me.
Excuse me, captain. Hi.

Uh, is that your wallet?

I was just heading in there
to report it missing. / Oh, good.

- Nice to find someone so honest.
- Okay.

A reward is in order.

- Oh, no, I support the troops.
- I insist.

Oh, that's way too much.

That's exactly the right amount for
what I'm about to ask you to do.

- God joined the army?
- Navy. It's thematic.

I want you to build a boat.

What's with all the make-work projects?

I mean, apply for a job,
do better in school, play chess.

All these annoying, bogus assignments

instead of doing something big
like, you know, saving the world.

Last time I asked someone
to build a boat,

it turned out to be something really big,
like, you know, saving the world.

Look, I have a really hard AP Chem
test coming up.

I don't even have a boyfriend.
Why couldn't you ask me to get a boyfriend?

Oh, "Build a boat," he says.
Okay. Um, how big?

Exxon valdez?
Should I plan for a lot of rain?

I don't know how to build a boat!


Joan of Arcadia
1x04 The Boat

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What do you think?

I used to call it basketball.
Now I call it blackmail.

You want me to buy you
a new transmission.

I want you to get some exercise.

This isn't blackmail.

It's an accommodation
between two reasonable men.

Hey, Bear! / Hey, Chief.
Hey, time out, you guys.

Barry works in the property room.
Great guy.

Yeah. We're bound to hit it off,
because, hey, we're both crippled.

Hey, don't be this way.

Give it a chance.

- Hey, Bear. My son Kevin.
- Okay, he's got next.

- People call me the Bear.
- People call me Kevin.

Kevin lost the use of his legs
in a car acc..

Only thing I gotta know
about you right off,

you want to play down low or up top?

Does it make a difference?
We're all the same height.

It's not about height, kid.
Not anymore.

Hey, Bear!

We playing, or what?

I gotta get back to work, slugger.
Mom will pick you up.

Have a good time out there.

Show them how the Girardi men do it.

- See you, Chief.
- See you, Bear.

- Bear!
- Go ahead, man. Finish the run.

Hey, Kev! You're up.

Top of the key.
Let's go.

Hey, Kevin!

What can I help you with?

My daughter has to build a boat
for a school assignment, right?

Yeah, it's definitely
an assignment for school.

But this is actually all the money
I have to spend.

Where'd you get that?

Uh, did you see Mr. Navy today?

You mean the recruiter?

Yeah. I found his wallet.
He gave me a reward.

Sweetheart, uh, maybe
we should forget the boat.

Build you a cute little
huckleberry raft instead?

No, no, no.
I have to build a boat.

Not a stupid raft.
A boat.

Let me see what I can dig up.

What, was I rude?

You could've used that money
to buy anything. / Uh-huh.

And you're spending it to get
extra credit in school?

It's the new me. What?

Lately, you have found these, um,
let's call them enthusiasms.

Chess, chemistry, boat-building.

I'm an adolescent searching
for my purpose in life.

I can't help but think of
my second cousin Florine.

The one who talks to flowers?

Oy. Mom, I'm not crazy.

Victim's name is Sergeant Rudy Milner.
11 years on the job. Good cop.

Killed behind a bar?

Middle of the afternoon?

He a drinking man?

More than most.
Less than some.

Broad daylight, but nobody
saw anything or heard anything.

Second cop in a week to get shot
in the face and then posed like this.

I should speak to his widow.

Chief, this is just like with
Patrolman Wilson.

Either it's the same killer, or a copy-cat.
It can't just be a coincidence.

Let's not make any assumptions
on this one, okay?

Clean, objective police work.


Get out of my way.

Eddie. Eddie, Eddie, Eddie--

Eddie, you're gonna need to
calm down for a second, all right?

Calm down. All right?

I'm personally taking primary
on this one. First priority.

Chief, I want in on this.

That's up to Detective Daghlian.

Look, we were partners 3 years strong.

Dead in a back alley.

Rolled like an old drunk.

That's no end for a cop.

"Side panel
into the stem rabbet.

Drill 3-inch pilot holes
in a zigzag pattern."

Was it the same person
who killed Patrolman Wilson?

That's what they're saying
on the news.

Mrs. Milner, we don't want to work
on that assumption.

It could sway the investigation
in a particular direction.

And right now, it's best to
keep an open mind.

I just bought Rudy a digital camera.

A good one he really wanted.

He never even got a chance to use it.

Things were going so well.

Your husband was one of us,
Mrs. Milner.

We'll catch whoever did this.

Thank you for your kindness.

Thanks to all of you.

Blue folder?

Something interesting from forensics?

Ballistics on the bullet that killed Milner.

9 millimeter.

That's about all they could tell.
Both bullets are pretty destroyed.

What's your next move?

I'd like you to authorize me
to put together a task force.

Task forces are for serial killers.

I think these murders are connected.

So do my guys.

Gentlemen, Detective Daghlian here has
informed me that the consensus of opinion

is that the murders of Patrolman Wilson
and Sergeant Milner are connected.

Sure looks like it, Chief.

He's asked for a task force.

- I'm not ready to go there.
- Why not?

A task force carries a certain mentality.

Its entire bias is: we're
looking for one murderer.

That's a big assumption.

And big assumptions create big blind spots.

Yeah, but there is a pattern.

- The way the bodies were arranged.
- And the weapon.

All forensics got off
the bullets was caliber.

I'm sorry, Sergeant Crowley,
I didn't catch that.

I said, "Exactly how many dead cops
does it take to make a pattern?"

With all due respect.

Does anyone doubt that I want to catch
Sergeant Milner's murderer?

I'll be the first one to
go after a cop-hater.

The first. We've lost two of our own.

I share your anger.
But Wilson was a traffic stop,

and Milner was an ambush
outside a cop bar.

Maybe there's an ex-con
with a grudge out there.

Or maybe the two of them
owed a bad man money.

But no one in this room
has brought me that.

With all due respect.

You measured all of these wrong.

Don't you know the carpenters' motto:
"Measure twice, cut once"?

See how I'm ignoring you?
Take a hint!

- Did Kevin call?
- No.

I thought I was supposed to pick him
up at the gym, but he wasn't there.

Luke, that's your dad.
Go see if he has Kevin with him.

Mom, I'm going to need more wood.

Save your money.
She's ruined, like, 8 trees.

- So, this is going to be a boat?
- Yeah.

Are you thinking about
cousin Florine again?

A little bit.

?? "Beautiful Day" by Mellowdrone ??

Oh, yeah. Ha!

You don't know where he is.
I don't know where he is.

Luke and Joan don't know where he is.

He's not answering his cell phone.

Bear probably took him for a burger.

Well, could you please call "the Bear"
and ask him to bring our son back?

- Hmm.
- Thank you.

- Hey.
- Had your mom worried, big guy.

I should've called. Sorry.

How did you get home?

I rolled myself along in this snappy chair.

7 miles in the dark?

Gee, officer, I stayed
in the wheelchair lane.

Well, it didn't give you much time
to play basketball.

Our deal was that I'd go.
You never actually said I had to play.

You still owe me a transmission.

Kevin... / Don't walk off
when we're having a discussion.

Do you see anyone walking here?

It's not like her to
skip your barbecue chicken.

Joan is totally focused on that boat.

I have never seen her so
industrious and happy.

That's great.

- Not great.
- Cousin Florine is industrious and happy.

Joan is not your second cousin Florine.

This family is off-balance.

Off-balance, or unbalanced?

Don't be funny.
Kevin is mad at you,

Joan's turning into second cousin Florine,

we have no friends in town,

you arrested the Fire Chief,

somebody's killing cops,

and you can't tell me
your job's getting any easier.

The rank and file don't know me yet.

They don't know if they can trust me.

It's normal. Takes time.

It was supposed to get better
when we moved here.

You said it would get better.
When exactly is the better going to start?

We haven't found our places yet, that's all.

You know what I need?

I need to see something good.

Some sign that says the Girardis will be okay.

All right, give me a hand, spaghetti arms.

Well, that-- that won't fit.
The proportions are all wrong.

No, I'm in the zone, dog boy.
I can't do wrong.

Dog boy?

But that-- that shouldn't have happened.


??"Things Behind the Sun" by Nick Drake??


Hey, slugger.

I'm sorry if I made you worry, okay?

It must be hard at your age

dealing with parents who worry about
you making it home for dinner.

Yeah. Used to be midnight
before you started wondering where I was.

Sport, I'll let you in on something.

Your mom and I always wondered
where you were.

We just had more sense
than to let you know.

Hey, I remember this.

M.V.P. Babe Ruth League.

- You hit .385 that season....
- I'm sick of those names.

What names?

Slugger, big guy, sport.
They don't apply anymore.

Look, I'm sorry for jumping the gun
on the basketball.

I-- I thought it would keep
your muscles toned.

For what? The gimp olympics?

Look, you're an athlete.

You always have been,
in or out of that chair.

That's something that
doesn't have to change.

The Bear skis Aspen every Christmas.

Well, big ups to the Bear.

What, are you trying to make me mad?

You think that because we're both
in wheelchairs, we're instant homies.

You know what? I don't even
see the Bear as handicapped.

Then why is it that the first thing
you wanted to tell him

about me is how I got paralyzed?

I'm trying, son.

I'm trying with everything I've got.

Can you say the same thing?

All righty.
Our next caller is Joan from Arcadia.

Hello, Joan. Uh, Joan?

Who, me?

Whoa! Turn down that radio, Joan.

Uh, thank you, Joan,
and thanks for joining us on chat lines.

What's your question?

You'll answer questions?
If I can.

Well, recently-- just today, in fact,

I found out that I had this incredible
talent I never knew I had before.

Well, go on.

Don't get me wrong. I love it.
It's just.. it's the wrong talent.

Uh, what would be the right talent?

Um, say.. making things better
between people I love.

What's your question?

Can I trade?

Sometimes one talent is all talents.

Everything that rises must converge.

You're doing great work, Joan.
Important work!

Be thankful for what you can do.
Don't just trade it away.

And don't let anyone talk you out of it,

no matter how reasonable they sound.

So... no tradesies?

Thanks for calling, Joan.

Moving on to Corrina,
who has love problems.

Daghlian, I want you and all your guys
down here in the parking lot.

Joan, I'm not really sure you entirely
grasp what's going on here.

Yes, I'm building a boat.
What are you doing?

It's lunch time.

Price knows you're skipping.

He wants to see you.

What are you, his lap dog?

You do whatever he says?

Look, I'm going to get into M.I.T.

Price is in charge of our permanent records.
Do the math.

You're freaking everyone out here, Joan.

Hope this pile of junk is worth it.

I'm pretty sure it is.

This isn't a joke on me.

This is a stain on the memories
of two slain cops.

Are you suggesting one of
my guys did this?

Detective, perhaps you didn't pick up
the subtle indicators of how angry I am.

But, do you honestly expect me to believe
this was done by some arch-criminal?

That the green goblin figured out
which car was mine and snuck in here,

leaving threatening graffiti?
One of you did this.

Maybe to bug my ass,
maybe to prove a point,

maybe for less laudable reasons.

Quit screwing around! Be cops!

Sir, strictly speaking by the book,

I know you're right about the task force,
but there's another issue.

I understand that a task force would
make the troops happy,

but what kind of chief would I be if I put
my own popularity ahead of an investigation?

That's one way to look at it.

Two grieving women, mourning the loss
of their husbands,

looking at me to do the right thing.

Tell me another way to view the situation.

There's a thousand live guys looking to you.

A thousand live guys with wives,

all watching to see if you give a damn.

It'a a larger view, Chief,

That's all I'm saying.

Chief. / Listen, Detective.
I've been thinking about what you said.

We just collared a guy who says
he knows something about the cop killer.

Name and charge?

Lenny Sams, receiving stolen property.

I'm not saying nothing
until I get a promise of immunity,

and I want it in writing.. from the D.A.

Mr. Sams, do you know who I am?
Tell him.

He's the Chief of Police.

Chief of Police, Mr. Sams.

Do you like the police?

I'd say we got a mutual hate on.

Well, I'm the cop you hate the most.

So, no fooling around, waiting for the D.A.

Or for your lawyer, you hear me?

What about immunity
on this so-called stolen goods thing?

Archie. I don't know his last name.

He hangs out at a shot and beer joint
on Lindale called the crosstown tavern.

What makes you think he's a cop killer?

Hey, I hear him in the can.

In the stall, praying for forgiveness
for killing a cop. Loud.

Let's go talk to Archie.

- I can explain.
- Explain what?

I haven't asked you to explain anything.

- I missed a few classes.
- Ohh. Quite a number of classes.

It wasn't like I was smoking cigarettes
at the mall and playing in the arcade.

Not that I know anybody
who does that stuff.

No. I'm sure you're doing something
much more important. / I am.

More important than algebra,
french, history, and, oh, yes,

AP Chem that you begged to get into.

I'm building a boat.

Excuse me?

- A boat. I'm building one.
- Why?

It's kind of hard to explain.

I'd like to congratulate you.

I've heard, maybe, 5.. probably
8,000 excuses in my career,

but that is an original.
"I'm building a boat."

What kind of boat?

I'm not exactly sure, exactly.

Oh, but you are certain it is a boat?

Oh, positive.

That's funny.

Because your skill tests don't indicate
any aptitude at all for building or design.

Mr. Price, I'm brilliant at this.

I started out making a bunch of mistakes,

but it turned out they weren't mistakes.

I mean, they were mistakes
if you follow the plans,

but I threw the plans away,

and all the mistakes fit together
into something better,

and I-I don't even know
what a joggle is.

- What is a joggle?
- I don't know!

But it's on my boat.

Mr. Price, I know somewhere
in that file,

it says that I don't finish what I start,
and I don't focus very well, and I'm flighty,

but I'm telling you,
I have put hours into this boat.

And I never get bored.
I barely sleep.

I think I've found my calling.

Here's my guarantee to you.

You may be building a something
that looks like a boat,

but it won't float.
How do I know this?

Because you are not a boat builder.

You are a high school student,
and a truant one, at that.

Do I make myself clear?

Do I make myself clear?


Spent a lot of time in jail, Archie.

That's before.

Before you found Jesus?

That's correct.

"For I shall redeem you
with mighty acts of judgment."

You get out of jail,
about 10 months ago.

A free man for the first time in 9 years.

Beer, ball games...

that freedom tastes pretty sweet,
don't it, Archie?

But a cop stops you for speeding.

Maybe you got something in the car
you shouldn't have.

Say, a 9 millimeter?

So, it's either take out the cop,

or back to jessup.

A religious man like yourself

must know that he's going to face
judgment on such an act.

one way or the other.

That's between me and the lord.

Can you explain this?

Uh, yeah. I ran out of lighter fluid.

If I'd had more, there wouldn't be
anything left of it at all.

This is very hurtful.

Tell me about it. It's filled with pictures
of somebody who doesn't exist anymore.

The son dad really wanted.

Ohh! Honey..

you know if he could, your father
would change places with you.

Hmm. Well, at least that's something
that hasn't changed.

- What?
- I was living his dream.

Big high school jock, college scholarship,
headed for the pros.

Everything dad always wanted for himself.

Then I went for a ride in a car,
and screwed it up for both of us.

You're blaming him for having memories.

Good memories of the feelings
you used to share.

That's what he misses.

That's what you threw in the fire.

I understand a lot of what happened.

Patrolman Wilson pulls you over,

and somehow, you have a gun.

You didn't want the gun.

A man doesn't always reach for a gun.

Sometimes, the devil puts
a gun in his hand. / Amen.

- Devil pulls the trigger.
- Yes.

But what I don't understand is,

did the devil pose the body
in a crucifixion? / No.

You did that?

- Sir, isn't that blasphemy?
- No!

I placed his mortal remains
in the form of our lord,

so it would speed his way to heaven.

"And god said,
let us make man in our image,

after our likeness".

How could this be blasphemy?

And this one?

I wouldn't cross his legs that way.

I didn't do that one.

Archie, print something for me on there.

Print "You're next."

Go ahead. Print "You're next."

He killed Wilson, but not Milner.

Guy leaves out an apostrophe,
and you're going to give him a free pass?

Get his confession,
and keep looking for Milner's killer.

?? "Gently Go the Hours"


Go away, Adam!

How'd you know it was me, yo?

You're the only one who calls me Jane.

Aw, man! That's awesome!

It's gone.

Okay. What's gone?

I did all this. No plans. Nothing.

I just cut pieces of wood,

and they fit together. Now...

You lost your mojo.

Yeah, maybe Mr. Price is right.

Probably wouldn't have floated anyway.

- Wait. Jane, you talked to Price?
- Yeah.

- Mr. Price at school?
- Try and keep up, Adam.

- And you told him about your boat?
- Yeah, so?

First day of high school,
I have to talk to Price.

And Price goes,
"Okay, Mr. Rove, tell me about yourself."

I mean, I don't know any better,

so, you know, I try to impress him
with my best talent.

- Which is?
- I can play any instrument.

- You can?
- No, no. Not anymore.

Mr. Price sits me down at a piano
and says, "Okay, Mozart, play."

So, I do, and I really lean into it,
you know?

I'm holding down that loud pedal,

and I'm hitting the low notes
with my elbow-- bong, bong, bong!

Grand finale... I lift the piano lid thing,

and I strum the strings with my shoe.

When I was finished,
Mr. Price says,

"You got to be kidding."
Since then, I-I can't play a thing.

I can't even whistle.

I'm no expert, but, uh,
if you are playing with your elbows...

Price and...
I don't know, somewhere,

he's got this, like,
coffin full of miraculous things

kids used to be able to do
before he stole it from them.

Like your beautiful boat.




You know what we need?

A dog. A dog who loves his master.

Aw. Hey, it said on the news
that you caught the guy.

Mmm. We made progress.

What's that burnt smell?

Don't change the subject.

All my senior officers think
we have the killer in custody.

I hope they're right.

But you think they're wrong?

Pretty much.

Then, they're wrong.

I'm glad you're so certain.

Well, they hired you because
the police department here--

- Uh, what's the technical term for it?
- Sucks?

That's it. And you don't suck.

That's bound to make them
hate you a little.

Today I seriously considered
giving them what they want.

Just so they'd like me.

And if there hadn't been
a lucky breakthrough...

I might have.

Never would've happened.

You'd have agonized over it,
and worried about it,

and in the end, you'd have
done the right thing.

Again, with the certainty.

Oh, I am more sure about you doing the
right thing than anything else in my life.

You are a very good wife.

Hey! I'm not a good wife?

Helen, if I was killed on the job..


I get killed in the line of duty.

What's your first question?

I would want to know
if it was awful for you.

If you were frightened
when it happened.

If you felt any pain.

I love you, too.
And if, say,

I suddenly bought you something
real expensive,

that you always wanted.

I'd ask, "Who's the girl"?

- I have to go out again.
- Why?

Because Milner's wife asked me the wrong
question and bought him a new camera.

Well, when you come home,

you have another little problem
to deal with.

How'd that happen?

You know how it happened.

Keep it in perspective.

First, go catch the murderer,
then argue with your son.

I have a different perspective.

Why would you do this?

Maybe we should talk about it
when you're not so angry.

Look at me.

Do you see anger here?

This was mine, not yours.

It was yours?

Who is this?

Who's this?
I mean, is that you?

Is that you accepting that medal?

Is that you holding that trophy?

Who's this crossing the finish line?
Is it you?

No, it's me, dad.

These are pictures of my son.

That's the part of you that belongs
to me, and no one else.

This is my eldest son.

Well, I'm not that kid anymore.

I'm not even who that kid would've
grown up to become.

What are you talking about?

You're exactly what that boy has become.

No! I'm this!

I'm not who I wanted or expected,

and I'm definitely not who you wanted.

I'm at a loss. I'm completely at a loss
of how to talk to you.

That's why I took you to play basketball.

I want to see you charged up over
something again that isn't models.

Models are for children!

You can't just hide up in your room
and play with toys.

You have to grow up!

Take an interest in something
we can talk about.

Well, this is what I'm interested in
right now.

So for a while, I guess we're not gonna
have anything to talk about.

Hey, um, does your boat look
anything like this?

Nope. Doesn't look like any of these.

But it is a boat, right?
It's not, like, a chifforobe?

What's a chifforobe?

I don't know, but it's not a boat, yo.

Look, Adam, I really appreciate
you trying to help, but I gotta close up.

Why is this so important to you?

I mean, there's a million other things
you could do.

It's complicated.

Well, that's stupid, Jane.

You know, I understand a lot of things
that other people don't get.

- You do?
- Unchallenged.

The reason that I do some of
the things I do...

it's kind of a...

a secret.

Hello? I could use some help here!

Did you hear someone come in?

- Hello.
- I'm in the large print section.

I'm sorry, I didn't know that there
was a customer back here.

You need better lighting.

Ma'am, this isn't the large print section.
This is sports.

Large print is over here.

Oh, thank you.
You're a very sweet child.

You were about to tell Adam.

Did you give me a boat-making mojo
and then take it away?

You know what I am gonna say.

What, that you never gave it to me in the
first place so you never took it away?

Excellent learning curve.
Now, what did I tell you on the radio?

Not to let anyone talk me out of
pursuing my project.

You mean Price?
Was what Adam said true?

- Is Price, like, evil?
- Are you afraid of him?

Well, every kid in school is afraid of Price.

The thing about fear is it doesn't
leave room for anything else,

like beauty or purpose.

Your large print section is pitiful.

So.. did you just pop up to stop me
from telling Adam about you?

I don't pop.

I abide. I'm eternal.
There's no popping.

So.. I can tell him.

Oh, that's totally up to you.
Free will.

Just remember that it's a burden
asking people to believe you.

Adam will believe me.

Yes.. but you don't know
Adam that well yet.

For example, you don't know how many
burdens the boy is already carrying.

And I'd like you to consider the possibility

that it is you who should take on some
of his burdens, not vice versa.

Adam has burdens?

Sometimes they look a lot like gifts.

What about my boat?

You'll know when to let go.

So, you were about to tell me something?

Something that's, uh, kind of a secret?

I gotta lock up now, Adam, so...

I'll see you tomorrow, okay?


??"All Who Are Weary"

That is a very personal question,
Chief Girardi.

You're a cop's wife.

You know there's no such thing as a
personal question in a murder investigation.

Yes, we had problems.

Big problems?


There was an affair?

More than one on Rudy's side.

And one on my side.

I'm going to need a name.

Believe me, you're looking
in the wrong place.

- This man would never..
- Did he love you?


Did your husband know?

Who broke it off?

I did.


Janet, the Chief's right.
We need to know who it was.

Eddie, I'm gonna need your gun.

Why, you lose yours?

Janet Milner, that's why.
Rudy Milner.

You put horns on your partner,
and then you killed him.

So, either you give me your gun, or
I'll find it and I'll feed it to you myself.

Just point, Eddie.


What are you doing?

What made Joan think this could float?

- Yeah, that's just..
- Not right.

- Well, this will all have to come out.
- She used nails.

Should be counter-sunk screws.

Yeah, brass, probably.

Well, what do the plans say?

?? "World Inside the World"