Life in Pieces – Facebook Fish Planner Backstage
By: Julie Mante
Story One: Slow Pokes
Greg (Colin Hanks) signs up his elderly parents Joan (Dianne Wiest) and John (James Brolin) for Facebook. Greg believes that his parents will now be able to see photos of their grandchildren without having Greg and his wife Jen (Zoe Lister-Jones) print them every week. Joan does not want to add her private information to her account, but she is happy to see photos of Lark, her granddaughter. As John and Joan start using Facebook regularly, Greg congratulates himself for signing them up. Because of Facebook, his parents are connected to their granddaughter so they visit the couple less often and he likes it that way. Greg’s happiness is short-lived when his parents come over and ask him to help them. John cannot remember his Facebook password so he cannot access the site. When Jen and Greg asks why they changed the password, Joan said she heard that a password has to be changed every three hours. When John changed it again, it required one of the letters to be capitalized. The next change wanted a number included in the password. He got upset when his password was not accepted because it was deemed “weak.” Greg says that he will reset the password. Joan wonders if the new password will work at their house and Jen assures her that the password will work anywhere.
The next day, Joan and John stop by Jen’s workplace to ask a Facebook question. They want to know who Miriam Bickle (Brenda Ballard) is. When Jen tells them that she was Jen’s high school teacher, Joan wonders why Jen’s old teacher is Jen’s friend and now she wants to be their friend. Jen tells them that they should be friends with Miriam Bickle and anyone they want to be friends with. At Sunday brunch, Jen and Greg are surprised to see more people there than usual. Miriam Bickle is there. John and Joan are confused as well. When Greg and Jen ask them what is going on, they believe Facebook invited everyone to the family brunch. Joan claims she just invited her group, but it turns out that her group is filled with her patients, book club, the mall walkers’ meet up, librarian and pizza delivery man. Even Greg’s old high school girlfriend, who strangely looks like a young Joan, showed up to the family brunch. While Joan and John want to cancel their Facebook account, Greg is not ready to give up yet. When Heather (Betsy Brandt) tells Joan that she thinks that Joan’s Facebook account has been hacked, the viewers know that Greg will be deleting his parents’ profile.
Story Two: Derek
When Heather drops off Sophia (Giselle Eisenberg) at school she is surprised when her youngest daughter drops her hand. When Sophia sees her friends, the young girl lets her mother know that Heather does not need to walk her to school anymore. Heather pretends that she is fine with her daughter growing up, but she is hurt that things are going to change. She is officially a drop-off mom now. When she is cleaning Sophia’s room, she notices that Sophia’s pet fish Derek is dying. Heather is desperate to keep the fish alive. As she is cleaning Derek’s tank, Tyler (Niall Cunningham) sees his mother in action. When he suggests that he can distract Sophia while Heather goes to the pet store to change the fish, Heather refuses. This fish is special. Sophia and Heather won Derek at the Winter Festival. This was the first time Sophia had won any game without Heather cheating for her. She is determined to save this fish.
Heather takes Derek to the vet to get some advice on how to save him. The vet is surprised, but tells the mother that using an eyedropper to feed Derek might work. Heather is relieved that Derek is responding positively to the eyedropper and calls her husband Tim (Dan Bakkedahl) to share her good news. Later, Sophia tells Heather that she thinks Derek is sick. Heather races to check on the fish. As Sophia and Heather wait to hear about Derek’s status, Tim tells them that Derek did not make it. As the trio gather around the toilet bowl to say goodbye to Derek, Sophia ends up comforting her mother.
Story Three: Wedding Plans
Lyle Lovett guest stars in this story as a funeral director/wedding planner Ned Gawler. Matt (Thomas Sadoski) is uncomfortable about the weird professional combo, but Colleen (Angelique Cabral) is excited about planning their wedding. When Matt discovers that Colleen has seen Ned before about planning a wedding, he is not happy. He does not want to participate in a wedding that was planned by another man. Colleen agrees to give up some of her original plans to make Matt more comfortable. She feels sad about having to give up a dream wedding she has been planning since she was a little girl. Later as the couple plan their wedding, Matt realizes he has to make some changes, too. This will be his second marriage so the two agree to plan their wedding differently than Collen’s engagement and Matt’s first wedding. The planning gets complicated when they run out of options of where the wedding will be located. When they decide to have their wedding ceremony at the local school baseball field, Joan is perplexed. When the couple realize that they cannot decide on a wedding with their favorite things, they go back to Ned and tell him that they have decided to elope.
Story Four: Backstage
Sam (Holly J. Barrett) is not doing well. Her boyfriend broke up with her and she is making sure her whole family suffers with her. Tim was hired to the backstage doctor at The Grammys. While talking privately with Heather, Tim decides that he will take Sam to The Grammys to make her feel better. Backstage, Tim is trying to cheer Sam up, but nothing is working. Tim and Sam check out Charlie Puth’s dressing room. Tim suggests that Sam should take a picture with Charlie’s guitar, but Sam does not feel that they should touch anything in the room. Tim does not listen to her and starts to play the guitar. As he gets into his inner rocker mode, Tim accidentally hits the guitar and breaks it. Charlie (who guest stars) walks in and is surprised to see Dr. Hughes and a young girl in his room. Tim tries to blame the guitar, which was a gift from Paul McCartney, on Shawn Mendes. Charlie tries to let the incident go and says that he cares more about his keyboard than the guitar, but clumsy Tim strikes again and he spills water all over Charlie’s keyboard. When Charlie gets called to perform, he tells Tim not to worry about the piano or guitar and says goodbye to Sam.
Charlie’s manager is not as forgiving as Charlie so he fires Tim. The two go to a local diner to drown their sorrows in chocolate milkshakes. Sam tells her dad that she is sorry that he got fired. He says that he is sorry she got dumped. As Sam moves closer to her father and he wraps his arm around her, Tim knows things will be okay. The moment is poignant because few words are needed. You can see the love and affection in this sweet and simple father/daughter moment.