Episode 5.09 : Election Day

  • Parenthood
    • Episode Premiere : November 21, 2013
    • Distributor : NBC
    • Genre : Drama
    • Seasons : 5
    • Show Period : 2010 - 2015
    • Production Company: Imagine Entertainment, Universal Media Studios
    • Official Site :

Cast and Crew

The Story

There's an unknown girl sitting in Max's chair at Hank's studio and he does not like it. Max immediately tells Hank his intentions regarding his daughter Ruby - she likes the Sharks, she's his age, and she's a girl, which means she fits all girlfriend criteria. As expected, Ruby doesn't take kindly to Max's request to be his girlfriend, but is further incensed by Hank's suggestion that she go along with it. Unable to understand Ruby's frustration, Hank turns to Sarah for help. Sarah can't stop laughing at his stupidity: Hank's proposal teaches Ruby to lie to squeeze out of tricky situations and doesn't teach Max that love is a two-way street. The next day, Hank advises Max that getting a girlfriend will happen and there's more to it than just meeting criteria.

Jasmine and Crosby do last-minute canvassing outside a supermarket, but Crosby is ignored in the predominantly black neighborhood. Jasmine's on par and loving the experience - after all, voting for Obama in 2008 was incredibly meaningful. Crosby tries to relate, spinning a tale about shedding tears while voting. When he takes Jabbar to the voting booth, he's denied entry since he's not registered to vote. Crosby pulls a fast one by raising his hand and "voting publicly." Later, Jabbar asks Jasmine whether she voted publicly or privately. Jasmine's livid that Crosby lied; the blame falls squarely on him if Kristina loses by one vote. Determined to avoid such a scenario, Crosby stops a voter and bribes him to change his vote to Kristina Braverman.

Rifling through Ryan's drawers for dirty clothes, Amber finds a new, full prescription for his anxiety medication. Her issues at home are brushed aside when Crosby asks for a special favor: backup vocalists are scheduled to sing on Ashes of Rome's latest track tomorrow, and he needs her to record guide vocals. Much to everyone's excitement, she completely kills it in the studio. Amber's on cloud nine until she arrives home to Ryan and cold Chinese food. He thought they'd have a romantic dinner, but she didn't tell him she'd be home late. He's missed her lately, but she stops him before the make-up session gets too steamy. Has he been taking anxiety meds again? Ryan categorically denies needing the pills anymore...

The next day, Oliver listens to Amber's recording and agrees with the rest of the band - he loves it so much, he doesn't want backup singers. Amber's interested to learn the whole thing was band member Zack's idea... Later, Amber and the band head to a local bar to celebrate, and a date with Ryan completely slips her mind. Suddenly, Amber's phone rings. She tells Ryan she'll drive home immediately, but since she's been drinking, he orders her to stay put until he gets there. His timing is impeccable, walking in just as Zack puts his hand on Amber's arm. Ryan sees red and beats Zack to a pulp, landing himself in jail. Hysterical, Amber calls grandpa Zeek to come get her at the precinct.

Judgment Day arrives for Victor as he officially changes from fifth to fourth grade. Ed and Joel are reintroduced in the hallway. Later that night, Joel reads an incoming message from Ed on Julia's phone. A late-night encouragement text from another man doesn't sit well with him. He mentions to Julia that the two of them have been texting a lot lately, but she brushes it off as sustainability committee craziness. Joel doesn't seem convinced...

The first day in fourth grade clearly hasn't gone well, as Victor slams doors, curses at Sydney, calls himself a "tard" and accuses Julia of lying when she told him he was smart! Sydney screams it's unfair Victor isn't being punished for his behavior. Overwhelmed, Julia calls repeatedly calls Joel at work. When he fails to pick up, she stomps into his office and interrupts his meeting with Peet. Joel further infuriates Julia by refusing to discuss non-emergency problems at work.

Joel and Julia finally talk at Kristina's pre-results party, but their issues run deep. Her behavior at his office was unacceptable and he never would have done that to her. Screaming at his client could've cost him his job! Joel championed Julia's work for nine long years and she can't even give him three months?! Julia shoots back that a family crisis is happening right now and she needs him - he needs to be there for more than just the kids. Unable to take any more flack, Joel exits the party to comfort Victor and Sydney, leaving Julia crying in the hallway.

Thanks to Kristina's relentless hard work, she's within 2.5 points of Bob Little - she could win! Adam confesses he originally didn't want her to run, but she's ready for this. Encouragement comes from all corners, including wheelchair-bound Gwen, who came out to vote. The last votes to be counted come from Bob Little territory, and the total swings the election in his favor. Kristina delivers a heartfelt concession speech to her supporters. Her months of effort haven't been in vain. Caroline Lee from the debate translates a message to Kristina from her deaf daughter, Emma: because of Kristina, Emma has moved to a better school, and she thanks Kristina for changing her life. Kristina already made a difference regardless of losing the election.

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