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Episode 104: Pigeon

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Pigeon
Air Date October 24, 2007
Written by Rina Mimoun
Director Adam Kane
Next episode "Girth"
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A widow, Becky Caden, is convinced that her aviator husband did not commit suicide. Ned and Emerson step in to discover the truth about the air crash. Meanwhile, Olive takes a wounded messenger pigeon to the Aunts for help.

Synopsis

Ned is sitting alone in a field at the Longborough School for Boys because he finds it difficult to make friends. Digby makes his way to his master, stopping only to sound a fire alarm. The two are reunited, but they still can’t touch without Digby dying again. Ned pets him with a stick he finds.

While Chuck makes pies for her aunts Lily and Vivian and adds the mood-altering drugs, Ned comes in with bee stings. He takes Chuck up to the roof and shows her how he’s set up her old bee hives with new bees. Olive arranges to have the pie delivered, knowing they’re connected to Chuck. She’s interrupted when a messenger pigeon with a broken wing slams into the Pie Hole window and dies. She picks her up, affectionately names her "Pidge" and tries to determine if she’s really dead, and brushes her against Ned. She comes back to life, and Ned and Emerson nervously wonder what is going to die to “replace” her. Olive talks about taking Pidge to Lily and Vivian, since she knows they’re bird lovers from her last visit. Ned worries about a nearby squirrel, but after sixty seconds, another bird falls from the sky. The group is shocked when a crop-duster slams into the Broadview Luxury Apartment Complex nearby.

They check out the apartment, which belongs to a Conrad Fitch. Fitch, an attractive man, is unharmed and even manages to catch Chuck when she stumbles over some debris. Ned is unhappy, since he couldn’t catch her without re-killing her. They quickly discover that the insurance company refuses to pay on the pilot’s life insurance, believing he committed suicide. The widow, Becky Caden, hires them to prove it was murder and Emerson and Ned go to the morgue. While Emerson has to deal with the coroner, Ned interrogates the pilot, Bradan Caden, who says his plane was hijacked by a man in an orange prison suit.

Olive goes to the aunts and shows them Pidge, while considering the best way to tell them about Chuck. They discover that Pidge had a message on her leg and Olive suggests they go to the Pie Hole for pie for celebration after they heal Pidge's wounds.

While Chuck has pie with Conrad, Ned and Emerson go back to the apartment and find a corpse in a trunk. Ned brings him back to life and they figure out the dead man is Conrad and the original Conrad is an impostor. Back at the Pie Hole, “Conrad” holds Chuck’s hand and she pretends that it’s Ned’s hand. Ned barges in and “Conrad” runs out the back. Ned grabs his hand but pulls it off: the man has a wooden arm. He makes his escape.

Emerson checks the background on the prisoner and determines his real name is Lemuel Weingar who was in jail for embezzlement. He lost his right arm while shredding important papers and ended up with the nickname “Lefty Lem.” Further, Lefty’s cellmate was Jackson Lucas who was in jail for stealing jewels that were never recovered. They go to dig up Jackson at the prison grave yard and he reveals he hid the jewels at the VonRoenn Windmill and that he told Lefty about the hiding place.

Lefty arrives at the windmill and introduces himself to the owner, Elsita. She invites him in and he ties her up and rips open the stairs to find the jewels. Olive, Lily, and Vivian are following Pidge, who is flying to the windmill. Ned, Chuck, and Emerson are driving there separately and Emerson is forced to sit through them chatting about their relationship.

Pidge arrives at Elsita’s windmill, and Lemuel says that she’s his bird. Olive and the aunts come in and it turns out that when Jackson hid the jewels at the windmill he fell in love Elsita's mother, Elsa. Once he went to jail, they secretly corresponded by messenger pigeon, Pidge. Elsita reveals that her mother died but she kept up the correspondence. Lemuel also kept up the correspondence when Jackson died, and the two fell in love. Elsita is also missing a leg, and reveals that the diamonds are hidden in her wooden leg.

Chuck and the guys arrive and Olive goes to answer the door. She sees Chuck and prepares to open the door and reveal her existence to the aunts, but then reconsiders since she realizes how much it would hurt them. She slips out and tells Chuck to wait a couple of minutes, and Chuck spots her aunts’ car. Olive gets Vivian and Lily out the back. As Lily drives them away she catches a brief glimpse of Chuck but isn’t sure if her one eye is playing a trick on her.

Emerson captures Lemuel and collects the reward for turning him in, and Elsita promises she’ll write. Lily and Vivian share a pie while looking at a portrait of Chuck, and Lemuel and Elsita continue their correspondence. On the roof, Ned and Chuck dance while wearing beekeeper gear.

Additional Info

Music

Kristin Chenoweth and Ellen Greene, in character as Olive Snook and Vivian Charles, harmonize on the 1990 They Might Be Giants song "Birdhouse in Your Soul".

Note

  • In the scene when Ned, Emerson and Chuck are opening Jackson's coffin, when Chuck stops Ned from touching Jackson so that she may put her sunglasses on him, she says "Wait a minute" and touches Ned on the arm.
    • However, it should be noted that Ned is wearing a sleeve over this area of his arm so it is safe as she is not touching his skin.

Goofs

  • When shown the pamphlet for the VonRoenn windmill, there is a typo. It says: "The VonRoenn Mill has been preserved as a hisorical landmark. With its distinctive red sails, the Mill can be seen from anywhere in N.A.R.M."
  • When the narrator talks about the deceased pilot, Bradan Caden, a photograph of him is shown on an official-looking file labeled 'Policy Adjustments', which is ostensibly his life-insurance policy details. However, the actual text of the document is that of a Nokia telephone service contract.

Cultural References

  • In the first of many Alfred Hitchcock spoofs in the series, a dead crow falls from the sky, a spoof of a similar scene in Hitchcock's The Birds.
  • When Olive opens the curtains of the Charles home, she says "A bird that stalks down his narrow cage/Can barely see through his bars of rage." This is a quote from Maya Angelou's poem, "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings".
  • Ned says that he could avoid having a conversation about his and Chuck's many problems, but "like the cat, it will come back". He is referring to an old folk song called "The Cat Came Back" about a farmer who owned an ornery cat that wouldn't leave because it kept coming back.

Awards & Nominations

  • This episode won a Primetime Emmy award in 2008 for Outstanding Music Composition for a Series (original dramatic score) for Jim Dooley.

Cast

Regulars

Guest Starring

Co-starring


Previous episode: Next episode:
"The Fun in Funeral" "Girth"
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