In Gisborne, Ted and the gang plan to steal money from South African supporters, but leave empty handed. Back home, Chelsea Munroe is attacked in the park, but the cops don't take it seriously, so Rita, Ngaire and Carol join neighbourhood watch and discover Sparky is the main suspect. Finally, the criminals and the police join forces to catch the pervert.
Plot synopsis Edit
Carol, Rita and Ngaire are playing cards at the Munroe home and discuss the benefits of their men being away on a job when Ngaire's daughter Chelsea comes home crying and says a man grabbed her in Swan Arch Park. The women call the police and go to the park. Terry takes Chelsea's statement, but doesn't seem to believe what she's telling them and theorizes that Chelsea is making up a story to get attention. The women are upset about the police's attitude, with Rita saying "it's not bloody right."
Rita arrives home to find Eric, Sparky and Falani watching a blue movie in her living room and breaks the news of Chelsea's attack. Eric and Falani think it's funny because Chelsea is "plain" and "a four-eyes." Sparky, meanwhile, thinks she's nice. Wolf comes home from work and complains that the job is the absolute pits and not bringing him closer to Evan Lace.
In Gisborne, the South Africans finally leave their motel. Ted and Lefty go inside to find the cash while Bert and Phineas follow the yarpies. In the motel room, Lefty points out that the yarpies would have to be pretty stupid to leave so much money in a motel room while they go watch rugby in a dodgy town like Gisborne. Bert and Phineas, meanwhile, are getting impatient waiting outside the Gisborne Bar and Grill. Protesters from the anti-tour movement, including Dave and Riana, arrive and a fight breaks out with the South Africans. Bert and Phineas hide, unable to get involved because they don't want to get seen by the South Africans. Ted and Lefty, meanwhile, have ransacked the entire motel room without seeing a trace of the cash.
Mike McCarthy arrives at the West house on Rita's request. She wants to speak to him about the police doing fuck-all about the pervert and Terry's attitude towards Chelsea, but learns that Mike didn't even know about the incident. Mike goes to the Munroe home to question Chelsea in a respectful way and when he learns that Lefty is out of town, invites Ngaire to a neighbourhood watch meeting.
Rita, Ngaire and Carol go to the neighbourhood watch meeting. Rita has a negative attitude towards it from the get-go and the meeting's host, Wendy, apparently feels the same way toward the newcomers. Wendy reads the agenda and skips past item three, but the women learn that someone has been taking knickers from clothes-lines and assume it's the same pervert. Mike McCarthy arrives at the meeting and suggests the women learn how to defend themselves at self defence classes.
Rita takes a copy of the agenda home and is infuriated to find that item three is keeping a watch on 85 John Mulgan street – the West house. Carol reveals that Wendy was asking her about the Wests' "foster kids", whom she referred to as the "big brown one" and the "retarded one." Rita is furious that they are busy judging her family while there's a pervert out on the streets.
Ted calls Des McEwen to tell him the South Africans don't have the money, but Des already knows and says the cash will come later because the South Africans were worried about getting it through customs. He calls it a "hitch" and is less than informative about the next step. Ted then calls Rita to tell her about the outcome of the job and she says he should get Lefty to give his wife and daughters a call for once. Lefty is angry that he is not at home when his family needs him and gives Ted the blame for making them drive across half the island with nothing to show for it.
The next morning, Ngaire is about to take the girls to school and finds Mike McCarthy at the door. He has received a tip-off about a guy who could be the park pervert and questions Chelsea about his appearance. Ngaire realizes the description matches Sparky's and goes to tell Rita, but she insists that he's not the pervert. However, she sends Sparky on an errand so she can search his room, where she finds a woman's sweater hidden underneath his bed.
Mike McCarthy calls Ngaire and gives her his word that he will catch Chelsea's attacker. Also, he asks her for some pointers in finding a birthday present for his daughter, who is about Chelsea's age. Ngaire personally helps him find a present and the two walk in the park. Mike tells Ngaire that his daughter lives in Napier because his wife left him for a traffic officer, even though he was a faithful and attentive husband. Ngaire says she can relate. She comes home to find Lefty there and tries to seek comfort in him, but he says she should finish making dinner before telling him about it, leaving Ngaire looking unhappy.
Rita unloads on Ted about the latest happenings and tells him about the women's clothing she found in Sparky's room. Ted does not beat around the bush and asks Sparky directly, so he runs to his room. Rita follows and asks him what's going on, and learns that he likes the feel of the clothes because of a cardigan his mum used to wear when she hugged him. Rita comforts him and encourages him not to nick things from washing lines.
In the pub, the lads are drinking beer when Mike McCarthy enters. Lefty goes off at him because the police are not doing anything, but Mike encourages them to help if they feel so strongly about it. He has noticed a pattern in attacks; the perv hangs around Swan Arch Parks and likes Tuesday nights because that's the day he receives his benefits and gets loaded at the pub. Mike tells them to meet him at the park that evening. Ted and Rita are conflicted about whether they should help out a cop, but ultimately decide that it's for the greater good and might clear Sparky's name.
At Swan Arch Park, Mike is presenting his plan to Neighbourhood Watch when the gang plus wives arrive. Wendy's husband Brian immediately recognizes Lefty as the guy who brought Wendy home when her car broke down. Ngaire and Rita recognize this as a cover-up for one of Lefty's infidelities and Ngaire makes a remark about Lefty's missing testicle. Mike tells the group – "blokes only" – to split up in pairs and go to each their designed area of the park. As the men take off, Rita asks Wendy for her advice and brings her into the park because she has something to show her.
Ngaire and Carol go to the West house and open a bottle of wine, where Carol tries to remain optimistic about Ngaire's relationship. Sparky enters and tells Ngaire that he's not the pervert and would never do something like that — "especially not to someone as amazing as Chelsea." Chelsea is flattered as an embarassed Sparky runs off to the basement.
Mike and Ted discuss whether Sparky is the pervert or not and Mike brings up the unexplained death of Sparky's father. Meanwhile, Rita threatens to tell Brian about her infidelity with Lefty unless she drops her agenda against Rita's family. Then she tricks Wendy that there's someone behind her and disappears, leaving Wendy alone. Brian tells Lefty how the pervert stole Wendy's good lingerie from the clothesline and reveals that he is extremely proficent in Kung Fu, so he can take care of the pervert. However, a flashback reveals that Lefty threw Wendy's knickers out the window while they were having sex in his car.
Phineas and Bert make conversation about the lady that Bilkey went to Australia to see, but the latter avoids the subject and points out that there's no one for the pervert to attack because the women are staying at home. Phineas jokes that they could put a dress on Bilkey and see if the pervert attacks him, but Bilkey is not amused. Ted and Mike hear branches cracking and sneak up on who they assume to be the pervert, but it turns out to be Bert taking a slash.
In the basement of the West house, Wolf and the boys are with Chelsea and Lisa Munroe playing a tabletop game. Eric and Falani ask about their self defense classes and the girls demonstrate their "Eyes, throat, balls!" attack to the shocked boys. Sparky reaches out to touch Chelsea's cardigan, but stops when Wolf tells him to not be weird. However, Chelsea doesn't seem to mind.
Back in the park, a lonesome Wendy is attacked by the pervert, but the men quickly run to her aid and beat him up. Brian recognizes the pervert as their neighbour Hamish. Lefty gives him a few extra punches before the men go home to their wives.
Later, Brian and Wendy come home after jogging to find Ted and Rita in their living room. The Wests point out the flaws in the security of their home and Ted offers Brian his services as a locksmith. Rita subtly threatens Wendy that if they had anything worth taking, they could have taken it and Wendy has a look of defeat.
In Swan Arch Park, Chelsea is walking home while playing a portable game when Sparky comes up behind her. She uses her "Eyes! Throat! Balls!" attack which leaves him groaning. Sparky says he wondered if she wanted someone to walk home with her, which Chelsea says would be great, so they walk off together.
"Out on the Streets" by Space Waltz
Playing in the pub as Ted calls Des McEwen and Rita.
Analysis and commentary Edit
- Lefty says Bert and Phineas should follow the yarpies because they will blend in better around Gisborne, because Bert is Maori. Phineas says "I'm not Maori", but it will be revealed that he is in fact Maori in another episode. (Foreshadowing)
- When McCarthy sees that Ngaire came to the neighbourhood watch meeting, he says "You came. Beauty." This hints at his flourishing feelings for him. (Foreshadowing)
- Ngaire takes a sullen look at the food on the kitchen bench before she agrees to help Mike McCarthy buy a present for his daughter. This could symbolise that by helping Mike (and eventually inciting a relationship with him) she is leaving her role as "only a housewife" behind. (Symbolism)
- Ted says Bilky will get a cut from the job even though he's in Sydney at the moment, because it's "gang rules." (Rules)
- When Ted and Lefty have to repack the South Africans' clothes the way they found them, Lefty says they "should have brought the bloody women", while Ted folds their clothes meticulously. This reflects the different power dynamics in their relationships. (Sexism)
- Rita wants to be included in the mission at Swan Arch Park, but Mike McCarthy says it's boys only tonight – "just to be on the safe side." (Sexism)
- Wendy pretends to neighbourhood watch and her husband Brian that her knickers were stolen from the clothesline when, in fact, she lost them while having sex with Lefty Munroe. (Deception) (Infidelity)
- Phineas and Bert make conversation about the lady that Bilkey went to Aussie to see, but Bilkey avoids the topic as the "lady" is in fact a man named Steve. (Homophobia) (Deceit)
- Bilkey points out that there are no women in the forest to attack, and Phineas jokes that they can put a dress on Bilkey to see if they attack him. Bilkey is not amused. (Homophobia)
Cultural references Edit
- Chelsea is playing a Game & Watch, which was a series of popular handheld electronic games by Nintendo. She is playing the game Parachute, which was released in June of 1981.
- When Rita catches Eric, Sparky and Falani watching a "blue movie," Eric and Sparky say they were watching Country Calendar and Count Homogenized. Country Calendar is a documentary series.
- Wendy references an ad on TV where a woman gets a knock on the door and yells out "I'll get it, Jim," pretending that her husband is at home.
- Mike McCarthy bought his daughter a Sindy doll for her birthday last year.
- Mike says the cop his wife left him for a traffic officer who thinks he's Erik Estrada.
- Rita tells Wendy: "My boys might not look like the Brady Bunch, but they're good kids."
- As an example of how the police have been wrong before, Rita brings up Arthur Allan Thomas.
- Brian asks Lefty if he's seen Bruce Lee's Fists of Fury. Falani later asks Chelsea if her self defense classes are "like Bruce Lee styles".
- Bert says The Incredible Hulk is on TV tonight.
- Ted called Neighbourhood Watch the bloody "Dad's Army" of policing.
The episode takes place over a span of at least four days. The previous episode ended on Sunday July 12, in a scene where Ted said the South African supporters would arrive "this week", which most likely places this episode in the week of July 13 – July 19. At the latest, it could take place before July 24, because the next episode takes place on July 25.
On day one of the episode, Chelsea Munroe is attacked on her way home from school and Wolf comes home from work, which places it on a school-day: Monday–Friday. On day two the characters' clothes have changed and we see Ted's gang after waking up, which indicates that it's a new day. Ngaire tells neighbourhood watch that Chelsea was attacked yesterday, meaning the two days were consecutive.
The second day ends with Ted and Rita on the phone in the evening and the third day begins with Ngaire about to take the girls to school in the morning. Day three is explicitly stated to be a Tuesday by Mike McCarthy in the pub, which means it's either July 14 or 21. However, this creates an inconsistency because it would place day one on a Sunday, when it was in fact a school-day.
A possible explanation could be that the first two days take place sometime in the week of July 13 – July 17, while the third day takes place in the following week on Tuesday 21. This is highly unlikely due to the nature of the episode's events, though, so it is most likely a continuity error.
General notes Edit
- The address for the West House is given as 85 John Mulgan street.
- The yarpies are visiting a lion safari park in Massey before driving down to Gisborne.
- Carol loves to throw coins in the creek in Rotorua and watch the Maori kids dive after them.
- Des says "You got a phone in your van, have you? Do you carry a phone round in your fucking pocket?" This is a fun commentary on how in the real-world present day, virtually everyone has a cellular phone on them at all times.
- Theodore "Ted" West
- Bert Thompson
- Phineas O'Driscoll
- Lefty Munroe
- South African supporters (4)
- Carol O'Driscoll
- Rita West
- Ngaire Munroe
- Chelsea Munroe
- Police officer (unnamed)
- Desiree Munroe (mentioned)
- Eric Grady
- Barry "Sparky" Gibbs
- Evan Lace (mentioned)
- Mike McCarthy
- Sparky's mother (mentioned)
- Dougal Gibbs (mentioned)
- Anne-Marie Gibbs (mentioned)
- Lisa Munroe
- Mike McCarthy's daughter (mentioned)
- Mike McCarthy's ex-wife (mentioned)
- Bilkey van Heeder
- White van (Ted West gang's)
- Beige car (LZ 9838) - parked outside Gisborne motel
- Yarpies' blue van (LD 1793)
- Green car (Motel parking lot)
- Blue car (Motel parking lot)
- Car in Gisborne Bar and Grill parking lot (HX 3513)
- Protesters' van
- Munroe car - Yellow (HM 6435)
- Terry's car - JX 5712
- Brian and Wendy's car
- Lefty Munroe's car – black
- Des McEwen's office
- Munroe home
- Uncle's (mentioned)
- Swan Arch Park
- West house
- Gisborne Bar and Grill
- Wendy and Brian's house (#84)
- #23 (mentioned)
- #58 (mentioned)
- Community Centre (mentioned)
- Hutchison Ave (mentioned)
- Henderson Square (mentioned)
- Napier (mentioned)
- Western Arms
Foods and beverages Edit
- Clear drink with lemon slice
Main cast Edit
Recurring cast Edit
"I hate these kind of people. Twitching their curtains, peering over their fences." — Rita West about neighbourhood watch
"There is a dangerous pervert out there and those wallies are sitting round drinking tea and judging my family? Well, fuck them and the horse they rode in on." — Rita West
"He's a couple of sandwiches short of a picnic, but he's no perv." — Ted West about Sparky
"Cack-handed, are you?"
"Well, 'Lefty'. Gibble-fisted?"
"He's got one testicle. The left one."
— Brian, Lefty and Ngaire Munroe
"You're like the AA aren't you, Lefty? Always there for a damsel in distress." — Rita West to Lefty Munroe