Dancin’ on a Prayer

Spoiler Alert: This post contains scenes or content from the May 13, 2014 episode of The Goldbergs, the season finale. 

The ’80s are officially back!

The hit freshman ABC sitcom The Goldbergs starring Wendi McLendon-Covey (Beverly), Jeff Garlin (Murray), Sean Giambrone (Adam), Hayley Orrantia (Erica), Troy Gentile (Barry), George Segal (Pops) and Patton Oswalt (Older Adam/Narrator) has been renewed for a full second season, moving to Wednesday nights at 9:30 p.m. this Fall.

Congratulations to everybody involved with The Goldbergs, most especially the creator of this pitch-perfect nostalgic treasure of a show Adam F. Goldberg! This news is pure awesomeness!

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We’ve all seen the cult classics that feature that legen-wait for it (sorry, wrong show) legendary house party set during high school. Pizza spinning like a record, impromptu, yet perfectly choreographed dancing scenes between high schoolers and the dream girl hanging-out across the room waiting for Prince Charming to emerge from the chaos of her immature classmates to prove his distinguishing worth.

And Big Tasty made sure this moment would be golden…with his thick gold chain necklace. But hey, it’s Barry, just go with it.

Reliving the “glory days” of our youth is usually cause for pause (Big Tasty isn’t the only one with fresh rhymes!), but not for Murray. The patriarch of the Goldbergs, would, only every so often, reveal insanely cool tidbits about his life that would shock his kids with priceless expressions and intrigue. Like that time he was in a plane crash, met Lou Reed while he was a waiter or the fact that he once made 70+ consecutive free throws back in high school.

No big deal.

Except when his wife Beverly finds out he was invited to his old high school to be celebrated for his tremendous accomplishment. She said yes, regardless of what Murray wanted to do. Murray rebutted, but this is Beverly Goldberg we’re talking about. So, what happened? Beverly prepared dinner for her snuggle monsters and they left the kids under the careful supervision of their cool grandpa, Pops.

What could go wrong?

After a disappointing year for Barry, who never got his crush to even learn his name (“Gustav? I’m not the foreign exchange student!”), he wanted to do something big…something that people (ie-Lexy Bloom) would never forget. Younger brother-with-a-video-camera Adam put it best, with nothing short of pure elation.

“This is my Risky Business.

There’s just one thing about the past, which is that it’s sometimes hard to match with the realities of the present. In some cases, this reality can hit as embarrassingly flat as an air ball at the free throw line in front of everybody during a break at the big game after shooting granny style. Despite the fact that that shooting technique may have been popular back in the day (sure it was Murray…), it’s a tough fall from grace and past invincibility. What can be even tougher is trying to create those memories of glory in the present.

Enter Barry, with the help of Pops, Erica and the always wandering and analog-recording eye of Adam.

The party (sorry, the Sweater Party) reminded me of when I was just a few months into the experience of being a SigEp (Sigma Phi Epsilon) at college in the northeast during 2000-something, far from my home in Ohio. I was shy, basically only saying “here” at chapter meetings. There was a shortage of participants for the annual “Greek God and Goddess” competition.

I reluctantly volunteered.

Panicked, I had to think of a talent…Then, it hit me like the fully-loaded truck in this funny commercial I thankfully remembered. After recruiting two of my female friends from down the hall in my dorm and making them an offer they couldn’t and didn’t refuse, they agreed to join me for the performance of my life. During the day, before the performance, I called my Mom and told her what I was planning on doing. I was completely surprised at her response. She said, “Well, if you’re going to do it…then really shake it!”

After changing from my self-made toga, I was now walking up the stairs and onto the stage in front of the entire university Greek life with my two giggling backup dancers. I saw the shocked looks on my brothers’ faces, turned and waited for the music. Once the music started, I turned back to the audience in a tight pink tank top and a short pink skirt and mouthed the words, “let’s go girls.” Yes, I lip-synched and danced to Shania Twain’s empowering anthem “Man, I Feel Like a Woman.” An unexpected standing ovation later and everything had changed forever for the better. I could comfortably talk to girls, including one girl in particular that I had a crush on (who was one of my backup dancers…) like never before and had confidence like never before. And all it took was being random, goofy and dressing like a woman. Who knew?

Barry, who after being caught by his furious parents for throwing a massive party, gave a sincerely inspiring speech about his disappointing year. This convinced Murray to give him 10-minutes to live out his “glory days.” Mine and Barry’s dancing opened us both up to throw our instincts of embarrassment and fear out the window and to follow Bon Jovi’s words to just ‘live on a prayer’ and have fun.

“You’ve seen him run. He needs this.”

There are moments in life when the setting is perfect for letting loose and taking a shot. Barry finally got the genuine attention of Lexy Bloom by letting go of trying to impress her with cheesy lines by just being his carefree self in those glorious 10-minutes while wearing a fly, quintessentially ’80s Adidas track suit before being grounded for the summer with sweater dry cleaning duty (plus a kissing sesh with Erica’s BFF on the dance floor to make Lexy jealous!).

Sometimes, it doesn’t matter how we look when we take a shot in life, it’s just a matter of if we can get it in the hoop.

The Goldbergs: Season 2 is happening this Fall at 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday nights on ABC!

P.S. Let’s do this, ’80s style!

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Posted on May 14, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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