Episode Guide

Jake of Hearts
Episode #309
Written by Dan Vebber

(opening theme song)

(at school)

Jane - I'm telling you, puppets make anything funny. Give me something that isn't funny.

Daria - Um... a plane crash -- into a nuclear power plant.

Jane - Okay. Now, picture the same plane crash, only the cabin is full of screaming puppets flailing their skinny little puppet arms. Funny, right?

Daria - Hmm... maybe. Are they on fire?

Jane - Hmm...

(Z-93 Party Van pulls up)

Spatula Man (over loudspeaker) - Hey, Lawndale High! Are you ready to par-tay crazy?

Jane - What the hell is that?

Daria - If it's an ice cream truck, that better be some damn good ice cream.

(students clamor excitedly)

Bing - I'm Bing.

Spatula Man - And I'm the Spatula Man! We're mental in the morning!

Bing - 'Cause you got to be crazy to make it through high school!

(students cheer)

Daria - Good grief.

Jane - It's lame deejays, Charlie Brown.

Ms. Li - Whoo-hoo!

(Daria and Jane gasp)

Ms. Li - This is so exciting! Imagine, real-life celebrities broadcasting all week live from (with awe) Lawndale High.

Daria - They're not celebrities.

Jane - They're deejays.

Ms. Li - Wacky deejays! And their hilarious antics will soon silence those naysayers who would have us believe that Lawndale High is a place of gloom. (laughs)

Jane - Of course, getting rid of the hidden cameras and the bomb-sniffing dogs would accomplish the same goal.

Ms. Li - You girls should be thanking me for caring so much about student morale.

Daria - I don't suppose the school would be receiving a large fee from the radio station for participating in this stunt?

Ms. Li - Ms. Morgendorffer, those bomb-sniffing dogs have to eat! (leaves)

(students cheer and shout)

Daria - Could puppets make them funny?

Jane - Hmm... I withdraw my theory.

(at Daria's house)

Helen - (into phone) Well, actually, Eric, would you mind if we wrapped this up tomorrow? Oh, no, that's okay, no, fine. It's just that my family was just... no. Yes, sure, of course. Not at all. Anytime -- never!

Jake - Nothing like Taco Tuesday, eh, girls?

Daria - If I recall correctly, Taco Thursday was pretty similar.

Quinn - I was on the radio today. Bing and the Spatula Man invited the Fashion Club to critique the outfits of some less stylish students.

Daria - Marconi would be so proud.

Quinn - That Spatula Man is funny!

Daria - As are most men named for kitchen utensils.

Jake - Helen, you're going to miss out on all the guacamole! (taunting) Mom's going to miss the guacamole, Mom's going to miss the guacamole...

Helen - Enough with the guacamole! (into phone) No, not you, Eric!

Quinn - I think Bing has a crush on me. Daddy! You're using all the cheese!

Jake - Hey! What did the doctor tell you about cheese? (into phone) No, not you, Eric! (laughs) How would I know what the doctor told you about cheese? Why, sure, I'd love to hear what the doctor told you about cheese.

Jake - "What did the doctor tell you about cheese, Jake? What did the doctor tell you about cheese, Jake?" Why can't a man come home from a hard day's work and enjoy a lousy taco without it turning into... hey, you know, it's the darndest thing! I can't feel my arm! (starts wheezing)

Helen - (into phone) Yes, I can probably put together a four-phase strategy by Monday, but...

(Jake continues wheezing and turns red)

Daria - Dad?

Jake - Blurk... (flops face-first into guacamole)

Quinn - Daddy?

Jake - Mom's... going to miss... the guacamole... (collapses again)

Helen - Jakey! (drops phone)

(at the hospital)

Doctor - We'll have to wait for the test results, but so far it looks like a very mild heart attack.

Helen - Oh, no!

Quinn - A heart attack! (wails) Oh!

Doctor - A very mild heart attack.

Daria - Was there much damage to his heart?

Doctor - I don't think so. If he adopts the right diet, exercise, and attitude, he should be fine. I hope you don't mind the question, but is there anything in your father's home life that might be causing him stress?

(everyone looks at each other uneasily)

(in Jake's hospital room)

SSW Announcer - Are bats sneaking into your neighborhood disguised as cute flying squirrels? Rabid rodent rip-offs, tonight on Sick, Sad World!

Jake - (shrieks) The bats of death! They've come for me!

Daria - Don't worry, Dad. It's just the bats of bad TV.

Helen - Oh, Jakey! I promise, the girls and I will take good care of you from now on.

Jake - What's the catch?

Helen - There's no catch, Jake. That's just your medication talking.

Daria - Assuming he's on any medication.

Helen - This book will tell us what we need to do now that we have a heart attack survivor in the family.

Quinn - And guess what, Daddy? I'm going to study to be a doctor!

Jake - Hey, that's great!

Daria - Dr. Quinn, medicine moron.

Quinn - A heart doctor. If Dad had died, I would've been freaked out for, like, years.

Jake - That's the spirit, sweetie. Avenge my death.

Daria - You're not dying, Dad.

Jake - Avenge me!

Helen - Jake, you're going to give yourself a... never mind. Honey, is there anything we can get for you?

Jake - Yipe! (EKG machine beeps) I want my mommy.

(at school)

Daria - So, my grandmother Ruth will be staying with us while my dad recovers.

Jane - Is this the grandmother who said she'd give you 100 bucks if you changed your hair?

Daria - Both my grandmothers said that.

Bing - Spatula Man, I see a couple of ladies here who I bet know how to par-tay!

Daria - We really should start driving between classes.

Spatula Man - Girls, we've got a treasure chest full of Zee!-93 prizes here, and all you have to do for the key is tell us, on the air, where you love to get mental in the morning!

(Daria and Jane walk past, ignoring them)

Bing - I think they have stage fright, Spatula Man.

Spatula Man - Come on, girls! Nothing to fear but winning! Just tell us which station plays the hits high-schoolers love to hear.

Jane - Note to self: stop by courthouse on way home and pick up restraining order.

Spatula Man - Well, no problemo! We'll just find some other mental morning party people.

Daria - This will get worse before it gets better.

Kevin - I can't believe they gave us free key chains -- with the Z-93 thingie!

Brittany - And look: it's a flashlight, too!

Kevin - Wow! How do they do that?

Brittany - They must be made with computers!

(at Daria's house)

(doorbell rings)

Helen - Ruth! It's wonderful to see you!

Quinn - Hey.

Daria - Hi, Grandma Ruth.

Quinn - Yeah, hi.

Ruth - Helen! Girls! Still haven't settled on a decorator, I see.

Helen - Well, if you remember, Ruth, I decided to decorate the house myself.

Ruth - Oh, marvelous. I look forward to seeing it once you get started.

Helen - As a matter of fact, it's already...

Ruth - And how are my little granddaughters? Daria, you look... you haven't changed a bit.

Daria - Actually, I've had a number of bionic limbs installed.

Ruth - Well, I don't know what that means, but as long as you don't get a tattoo, I'll be happy.

Daria - You mean, another tattoo.

Ruth - And how's my beautiful little Quinn? Is that a stethoscope?

Quinn - I need to get used to coordinating outfits around it. I'm studying to be a heart doctor, so the next time my dad collapses, I can save him.

Ruth - Quinn, girls as pretty as you don't need to become doctors.

Quinn - I know, but it's, like, you know, a calling.

Ruth - Where's my Jakey?

Jake - (shouting from upstairs) Mom? Is that you?

Ruth - Jakey?! You shouldn't be yelling! Didn't you give him a bell?

Helen - We... we were just about to, of course.

Ruth - Really! (goes upstairs)

Helen - (leafs through book) This doesn't say anything about a bell.

(at school)

Mr. O'Neill - (reads from Hamlet) "O! It offends me to the soul to hear a robustious periwigpated fellow tear a passion to tatters, to very rags, to split the ears of the groundlings."

Spatula Man - (outside) Coming up, our raunch-a-riffic list of 101 words for... sex!

(kids cheer and giggle)

(at Daria's house)

Daria - So the stories were right. People really do use these peculiar rooms to prepare food.

Ruth - Welcome home, dear. I'm just teaching your mother how to cook.

Helen - Oh, nonsense. I cook all the time, don't I, Daria?

Daria - Well...

Ruth - What exactly are you making, Helen?

Helen - Chinese chicken with pea pods.

Ruth - Mm-hmm. You do realize that's a piece of fish.

(in Quinn's room)

Quinn - Ugh! This is so frustrating! Daria, have you ever read this book?

Daria - Thrombocytopenic Complications After Stent Placement Post-Coronary Artery Angioplasty. Maybe you should start off with something easier. Many coloring books feature hearts -- and rainbows.

(Quinn gives Daria a dirty look)

(in Jake's room)

Ruth - Come on, Jakey. You've got to eat something.

Jake - But I don't like oatmeal.

Ruth - If you eat it, I'll give you some apple juice.

Jake - With a straw?

Daria - Pretend the spoon is an airplane. Works every time.

Ruth - Daria, could you feed your father for a minute?

Daria - I'm sure he can--

Ruth - Thanks, dear. (leaves)

Jake - Daria... my eldest... my heir...

Daria - Well, if I manage to bump off Mom and make it look like an accident.

Jake - This is serious, Daria. I may not be long for this Earth. And when I go, it could well fall on you to put things in order. Your mother, of course, will be so stricken with grief she'll be unable to function. And Quinn, she's just so very young! (sobbing) Oh, God, my little Quinn!

Daria - Dad, you're not dying. The doctor said you'd be fine after some rest.

Jake - To think I promised to walk you down the aisle one day.

Daria - Now there's a request I definitely don't remember making.

Jake - Daria, you don't get it! The reaper could walk into this room at any moment.

Ruth - Time for someone's sponge bath!

Jake - Aaah! (hides under covers)

(at school)

Bing - Hey, Spatula Man! Let's remind our audience what we're doing here this morning!

Spatula Man - It's simple, Bing. We're going to make a love match for this young man, live on the air. What's your name, chief?

Upchuck - Charles is my name, exploring the dark underbelly of passion is my game.

Ping - Okay, Charles. The first girl out here in our audience to agree to a date with you is going to get a free "Mental In The Morning" bumper sticker!

Spatula Man - What do you say, ladies?

(girls protest and throw things at Upchuck)

Jane - A date for a bumper sticker?

Jodie - Even Upchuck doesn't deserve this much humiliation.

Daria - Think how the bumper sticker must feel.

Bing - Well, Charles, it looks like the response is underwhelming, to say the least.

Upchuck - No, no... they're always shy at first. It makes them more mysterious.

Spatula Man - Hey, if they won't come to you, Carlos, the Spatula Man ain't too proud to go to them! (jumps off speaker and lands behind the Fashion Club)

Stacy - Hey!

Tiffany - Ow!

Sandi - Watch it, Spatula Geek!

Spatula Man - Hey, chickaritas! Which one of you lovelies wants to go out for a night on the town with my man Charles and win a free bumper sticker, on Z-93?!

Sandi - Tiffany, dear. Would you please explain to the Spatula Man why a bumper sticker cannot possibly compensate for the shame and permanent reputation damage involved in a single date with Charles Ruttheimer.

Tiffany - (into microphone) Upchuck? Eww...

Sandi - Well done. (Fashion Club leaves)

Spatula Man - Hey! How about you? Up for a date with our Don Juan de Lawndale?

Daria - Um, no thanks.

Spatula Man - Don't you want to hear your voice on the radio? Come on, you look like you could use a date.

Upchuck - Climb on up here, kitten. Let me be your ball of yarn. (growls seductively)

Daria - Okay, you talked me into it.

Spatula Man - You hear that, everybody?

Daria - I'll just run home first and take a ten-year shower. (leaves)

(at Daria's house)

Jake - (pounds on bed) Damn bed! Come on! I need lumbar support! Lumbar support!

Ruth - Jake! Calm down. Your father never used to carry on like this.

Jake - Of course not. Expressing emotion requires a soul.

Ruth - What's that supposed to mean? Dad was a decent, caring man.

Jake - Oh, sure he was! Caring enough to ship me off to military school first chance he got!

Ruth - But you asked for more structure in your life!

Jake - All I said was I might want to go to tennis camp!

Ruth - Oh, that's right.

Jake - But Dad twisted my words around. The same way he twisted my entire adolescence into a bitter hangman's noose of resentment and isolation. He wouldn't even teach me to shave!

Ruth - Now, Jake, you know your father had a razor phobia.

Jake - I had to learn behind the munitions hut from Corporal Ellenbogen.

Ruth - That man with one thumb?

(in the living room)

(Helen hangs drapes, Quinn plays "Operation")

(game buzzes)

Helen - Daria, what do you think of this pattern? Your grandmother seems to think our current drapes aren't cheery enough. I'll show her cheery.

Daria - This might not be the best time for you to be working near large panes of glass.

Quinn - Oh! (game buzzes) Darn it! I thought this surgery thing would be a lot easier.

Daria - Don't worry. When you operate on real people, their noses don't light up.

Quinn - Can you believe the stomach on this patient guy? No wonder he has to get all this stuff removed.

(phone rings)

Daria - Um, Quinn? That is the phone, isn't it?

Quinn - Sorry, I'm studying.

Daria - (answers) Hello? (beat) Mom, it's Marianne at the office.

Helen - I'll just have to call her back. Use the message pad.

Daria - Message pad? (grabs notepad) She'll have to get back to you when she regains her sanity. (beat) No, I don't know when that'll be. (beat) Okay. Bye. (hangs up)

(phone rings again)

Daria - (answers) Hello? (beat) Yes, Quinn's here, but she's studying. (beat) "Stud-y-ing." (beat) No, this isn't prank call. You called me. (beat) Okay. I'll tell her. (hangs up) That was--

Quinn - Message pad!

(Daria leaves)

Quinn - (game buzzes) Darn gall bladder!

(in Jake's room)

Jake - No matter what I did, he'd always done it better!

Ruth - He gave me $50 a month for my allowance. Allowance! As if keeping his house spotless and raising his children was only worth the price of a couple of girdles!

Jake - Tried to mold me into a soldier, but did he ever let me have a G.I. Joe? Didn't want his boy playing with dolls, he said.

Ruth - Oh, Jake! I wanted you to have that doll!

Jake - It was an action figure!

(Daria arrives)

Ruth - I'm sorry, Jakey. If I could do it all over, I'd stand up for you against your father. As a matter of fact, I'd do a lot of things differently. (gasps) Oh... oh, my... (sighs, lies down on bed) Feel a little faint. My chest.

Jake - Mommy? (shouts at ceiling) See what you've done, old man? How many more lives, Dad? How many more lives?

(Daria leaves)

(in living room)

Helen - Daria? What's going on up there?

Daria - I think we may have another patient on our hands.

(at Jane's house)

Daria - Anyway, the doctor checked her out and she's okay. It was just gas from my mother's "heart-smart" lima bean cupcakes.

Jane - She collapsed right next to your dad? That's so sweet -- I mean, in a twisted, horrible sort of way.

Daria - I guess.

Jane - They're not still in bed together, are they?

Daria - Heart disease, borderline psychosis... I shudder to think what lies behind door number three in the Morgendorffer genetic code.

Jane - It could be worse -- you could come from a family of wacky morning deejays.

Daria - Don't remind me. Between Dad and the Party Van, life's become a living hell at home and at school.

Jane - Don't worry, the van will move on soon. Or be destroyed in a mysterious bombing. I haven't decided yet.

Daria - There's no place left for me to hide.

Jane - You could always dive into a wooded thicket. (Daria stares at her) Hey, it works for bunnies.

(at school)

Jeffy - (screams) Z-93 makes me mental in the morning! (gasps and collapses)

(students cheer and shout)

Daria - I've seen more people collapse this week.

Bing - That was pretty good. But good enough to win a T-shirt? I don't think so.

Spatula Man - There must be some other students out there who can tell us on the air why Z-93 makes them mental in the morning!

Students - (all clamoring) Me, me, me, me!

Bing - You there, in the green. Yeah, you!

Daria - Once again, I'm being personally addressed by a morning deejay.

Jane - That's it, I want your autograph.

Spatula Man - You've been avoiding us all week long. Why not come up here and tell us why Z-93 makes you mental in the morning?!

Bing - Free T-shirt!

Jane - It's two sizes too large and tissue-thin. How can you resist?

Daria - I'd finally have a decent outfit for the auto show.

Jane - But... are you mental in the morning?

Daria - You know, I think I am. (goes up on stage)

(students cheer)

Daria - A few days ago, my father had a heart attack, forcing me to admit his mortality to myself for the first time. Accepting this grim new knowledge has been especially difficult, as I've been under constant, yammering assault by two utterly brainless and talentless so-called radio personalities. And so, for these reasons, I, Daria Morgendorffer, am mental in the morning.

(utter silence)

(tires squeal as van drives off)

(at Daria's house)

Helen - What do you think? It's basically your chili recipe but with half the fat.

Ruth - (tastes chili) Jake will know the difference. He grew up with my chili.

Helen - And now he's had a heart attack.

Ruth - I'm sure you did the best you could. Chili's not easy for someone who so rarely gets to cook for her family.

Helen - Now, Ruth, I...

(Quinn gasps)

Both - Quinn?

Quinn - Did you know the heart can take blue blood and make it red?

Ruth - Quinn, if you don't take your nose out of that book from time to time, you're going to get wrinkles.

Quinn - I thought of that, but the lady at the makeup counter said reading is okay as long as I pace myself.

Ruth - Wouldn't it be easier just to marry a nice doctor? Then you could stay home with your children and have dinner on the table for your husband every night.

Helen - Just what are you getting at, Ruth?

Daria - She wants you both to model your lives after hers. And who could blame her? After all, you were just telling Dad yesterday how you made all the right decisions in your life. Right, Grandma?

Ruth - I... well... I need to check on the laundry. (leaves)

Daria - You both owe me. (leaves)

Helen - How does she do that?

Quinn - You got me.

(in Jake's room)

Daria - How are you feeling, "Jakey"?

Jake - Oh, better, I guess. It's just a little difficult when your first major organ decides to betray you.

Daria - Just be thankful your pancreas is still on your side.

Jake - Daria, how am I doing? As a dad?

Daria - Um... I'm not sure what you mean.

Jake - My father always had to point out how I was screwing up, and that screwed me up. I just want to make sure I never make you girls feel that way -- less worthwhile or intelligent than your old man.

Daria - Here, I did the hard parts of the crossword for you.

Jake - Thanks, kiddo.

Daria - Don't worry, Dad. I'm sure you're doing better than your father did. For starters, wasn't he dead at your age?

Jake - Hey!

(in kitchen)

Quinn - Do doctors in operating rooms have to wear these masks? Because they can't be good for your pores.

Helen - Not now, Quinn! I mixed up the sugar and the salt again.

Jake - (runs in) Yahoo! I'm better than him! Better than him at living! He was dead at my age! Wahoo! (runs out)

Ruth - Was that Jakey?

Quinn - Mom, does this mean Daddy isn't going to die?

Helen - I think it's safe to say that Daddy's better now, honey.

(Helen and Quinn look at each other)

Quinn - Where's that message pad?

Helen - You can use this phone, I'll use my cellular.

(phones beep as they dial)

Jake - (runs around outside) Yay! Hello, front lawn! Hello, garbage truck! Merry Christmas, you wonderful old garden gnome!

(at Pizza King)

Jane - So Grandma Ruth just took off?

Daria - She finally realized she was doing more harm than good.

Jane - And did you, perhaps, help her realize that?

Daria - I may have had a hand in her epiphany.

Jane - I hope you washed it thoroughly. So, with the Party Van gone, I guess your life is back to normal at school and at home.

Daria - You know, as stupid as both places are, I see now that they could be a lot worse.

Jane - Why, Daria, are you becoming an optimist?

Daria - Hmm, I'm not sure. Hold up your glass. (Jane holds up glass) Nope... still half-empty.

Jane - Guess it was just a phase.

Daria - Although the half that's there looks delightfully refreshing.

(Z-93 Party Van pulls up)

Spatula Man (over loudspeaker) - All right, party pizza people! This is the Z-93 Party Van, and we'll be broadcasting live all week from right here at the best pizza place in town! Now, who here digs key chains?

(crowd cheers)

(Daria and Jane exchange looks)

(closing credits)