Season: One — Episode: 10 Director: Mark Farrell — Writer: Brent Butt, Mark Farrell,
Paul Mather — Aired: March 24, 2004 — Viewers (millions): 1.11 Summary: Brent develops a grudge for an out-of-town comedian who performs at a comedy night in Dog River. Hank though, is star struck with the guy and arranges to be the M.C. Unfortunately, Hank gets a little carried away after Lacey gives him a crash course in heckler management. The women's book club expands its reading list when they recruit a man.
At the Ruby Cafe, as Brent reads an article in the Howler about Wullerton getting a call centre, he and Hank spit at the mention of the rival town to Dog River. As Lacey asks why those in town always spit when Wullerton is said, Oscar enters and talking about the article, says "Wullerton." Lacey finds herself joining in the spitting. Seeing Karen reading "Life of Pi", Emma, Wanda and Lacey all express an interest in the book. At Corner Gas, Hank is excited that comedian Bob Lang is returning to town. Liked by Brent, as Lang hung out with him after his show, Davis doesn't know who Lang is. At the Ruby, Lacey suggests to Emma, Karen and Wanda they start a book club. However, worried that it'll be too "girly", Lacey says she'll get Brent to join, despite Emma's skepticism.
You're one of us now.
Surprisingly, Lacey is able to get Brent to join, especially when she mentions sandwiches will be served at the club. Brent wants to read a spy novel but agrees "Life of Pi" will be first. Outside the Dog River Hotel, Hank is able to easily convince Paul that he host comedy night at the Hotel, where Lang will be performing. At the Ruby, believing Brent will need help at the club, Lacey writes a synopsis of "Life of Pi." A bit insulted, Brent indicates he is reading the book. Hank arrives and practicing for comedy night, tries to make jokes of "synopsis" and "hypnosis." He also misunderstands what the book is about. Lacey warns Hank about hecklers and offers to help him with some lines. Brent and Hank mention a TV comedy show they like and Brent greets "Dave", who is on the show.
Ah, a detective novel.
At the Hotel, Oscar protests watching Lang being interviewed on TV and wants to see a nature show with animal violence. Lang tells a funny story which Brent realizes he told Lang when he last visited Dog River. Miffed that Lang is passing off his funniest story as his own, Brent believes he won't be able to tell it anymore. At Corner Gas, Brent tells Lacey he liked the book. Hank arrives and asks them to make fun of him, so he can practice handling hecklers. Brent insults Hank several times, which he takes seriously, not getting that Brent is following Hank's request. Lacey says she'll write down some standard heckler comebacks for Hank. At the pumps, Brent tries his story on Darren, who says he already heard it on TV.
I wouldn't exactly call that a mention.
At book club at the Leroy's, as Brent is asked his thoughts on the book, Lacey thinks Brent is in over his head and tries to cover for him. However, Brent gives an insightful opinion and compares "Life of Pi" to a spy novel. At the Hotel, Hank lamely tries to insult Davis' shirt. Brent's continued description of the spy novel intrigues Emma, Karen and Wanda but not Lacey, who wants to read another book. Some time later at the Ruby, Josh serves a coffee to Karen. Emma and Karen discuss reading several spy books to Lacey's distress, who wants to read books that teach, rather than entertain. Later at book club, Brent intellectually discusses a mercenary book, bringing Lacey to her breaking point. The others rebuke her for not reading the book and she leaves in protest. The ladies decide to start watching movies instead of reading.
I like the part where he knifes the guy.
After book club, Oscar searches for sandwiches. Brent tries to tell the story Lang stole but Oscar recognizes it and says he never reveals any funny things that have happened to him. The next day in front of the Ruby, a lost Lang arrives and tries to get directions to the Hotel from an annoyed Brent. Lang doesn't recognize Brent nor does he realize he stole Brent's story, despite Brent using several lines from it in their conversation. At comedy night, after being introduced by Paul, Hank starts using Lacey's comeback lines to insult people in the crowd, starting with Wade's shirt. As Brent watches, he hopes Hank's bad show will hurt Lang's performance and perhaps get him booed off stage. Saying she can ruin Lang's set, Lacey excuses herself.
Lacey compliments Lang and tricks him into thinking he's in Wullerton and also tells him that everyone in the crowd hates Dog River. Hank finishes his act and Lang insults Dog Riverites to a stony silence. After raising a toast to Wullerton, everyone spits, boos Lang off stage and demand Hank return. Brent praises Lacey and compares her ruthlessness to one of the characters in a spy novel they read in book club. Lacey says she'll re-join the club, which now watches movies. Breaking the fourth wall, Brent talks about the books mentioned in the episode, including one that was made up. He's joined by "Dave", who encourages viewers to read. Brent jokes that "Dave" has to be in everything.
Don't you get it?
In the DVD commentary for this episode, Mark Farrell mentions that he read "The Saint in New York" in high school.