Cory learns of Holly’s project of completing his Starbucks Jones comics collection.
Khan announces he is closing his deli and moving back to Afghanistan.
Cody and Owen bond over a cafeteria lunch before donating blood. Sunday, Les consoles a gloomy Summer via phone.
Funky makes good on his New Year’s resolution to start working out at the Fitness Center, under the watchful eye of a snarky female trainer. Sunday, Les and Funky commiserate over the troubles faced by their offspring.
January 27 – February 2
Harry and Harriet Dinkle attend the OMEA convention.
A visit from Le Chat Bleu and a Westview Schools snow day provide Les with the impetus to finally complete that fucking screenplay.
Holly’s Komix Kollecting Krusade brings her to seedy Black Hole Comics in Canton where she acquires another Starbucks Jones issue.
Aging weekend anchorwoman Cindy Summers is put out to pasture (AKA Cleveland) by ABC News. Sunday: Holly and Funky worry about Cory.
February 24-March 2
A week at the gym with Funky and his snotty personal trainer. Sunday: Holly and Funky worry about Cory.
Cindy lands at Cleveland International and proceeds directly to Montoni’s where she and ex-husband Funky commiserate. Sunday: Holly and Funky worry about Cory.
News from Afghanistan about a helicopter crash killing five Americans sends Funky and Holly into a panic over Cory. It turns out to be a false alarm.
Funky visits the nursing home to discover that his Dad has taken up smoking.
Interchangeable dumpy blondes Holly and Donna talk comics and reminisce about how teenaged Donna, disguised as a boy, used to kick ass at Space Invaders. Sunday, Cindy whines to Holly and Funky about her banishment from the weekend network anchor spot.
March 31-April 6
DSH John tips comix-questing Holly about “a guy in Centerville” who has an issue of Starbuck Jones. Holly meets Jff’s daughter (and Ed Crankshaft’s granddaughter) Mindy Murdock, who proffers the rare comic for free.
April 7-May 4
Jessica dusts off her VHS-8 camcorder to “pick up where she left off” with the documentary about HER FATHER JOHN DARLING. She interviews a few of her Darling’s colleagues, all of whom describe him to his daughter as a self-centered asshole. Jessica visits Westview Prison to interview her father’s murderer Pete “Plantman” Moss (nee Mossman). He tells Jessica her father’s dying words: “I love Barbie forever,” suggesting that Darling was cheating on Jess’ mom. Jessica rushes to her mother’s attic to retrieve her Barbie Dream House as well as the family videos, which reveal that “Barbie” was Darling’s nickname for little Jessica. Having at long last gained closure, Jessica announces to Darin that rather than pursue her documentary filmmaking, she’s content to remain in Westview as a wedding videographer.
Holly resorts to eBay in her quest to complete Cory’s Starbuck Jones collection.
Funky suffers indignity at the hands of his sadistic personal trainer and clueless doctors.
Evil Hollywood has the gall to request changes to the screenplay which it has given Les a ton of cash and a couple years to write.
May 26-June 8
Holly’s Quest for Cory’s Comix, part whatever: she’s traveling to New York and gets some help from Pete in acquiring a slabbed copy of Starbuck Jones, which she immediately proceeds to completely devalue.
The wedding of Wally and Rachel takes place in the Westview Gazebo before a thunderstorm sends the handful of invited guests to “the chapel of love,” Montoni’s Pizzeria.
June 16-July 6
Les is summoned to Hollywood to work on the screenplay, despite the fact that the cast has been selected and the screenplay has already been extensively rewritten.
Holly travels to San Diego Comic-Con with John and Crazy Harry to get her hands on the last issues of Starbuck Jones to complete Cory’s collection. She comes back empty-handed and dejected, until we learn that John has secretly acquired it, and back home in Ohio he plants it in the bargain bin at Tony Isabella’s “Garage Con” for her to “find.”
July 28-Aug. 24
In Hollywood, Les gets to know the actors who will portray himself and Lisa in the TV movie based (ever more loosely) on his book. As he continues “working” on the script, Les slips into a weird noir fantasy of late ’30s/early ’40’s Hollywood, where the movie’s leading lady attempts to seduce him in order to get more screentime. Les is jolted awake when he remembers that his “contract mentioned a ‘kill fee'” which somehow enables Les to walk away from the Lust for Lisa project (presumably without being sued). This and other events conspire to shut down the TV movie, and Les and Le Chat Bleu are free to resume their non-Hollywood lives.
Bull Bushka is courted for an assistant coaching position at a nearby university.
Holly shows up at Pm and Jff’s house to bestow a “holy grail” copy of Action Comics, in appreciation for Jff’s donation of a Starbuck Jones comic.
Funky and his trainer at the fitness center. Sunday: we learn Funky’s father’s name (Morton).
Scapegoats Football! The team endure Bull’s haranguing on team picture day. Owen is pressed into service when the first the team mascot and then the ‘Goats’ wide receiver succumb to the flu, and scores a winning Westview touchdown in the unlikeliest of fashions.
Sept. 28-Oct. 5
Funky and Les spend the Annual Lisa’s Legacy Run ruminating on old age; Les assigns himself the number “1” and presents a medal to his step-grandchild Skyler.
Les and Cayla are surprised to see Summer (even though she was at the Lisa’s Legacy Run) and Keisha, who are treated to the story about how Les forgot his and Cayla’s first wedding anniversary. For their second anniversary, Les presents Cayla with a manuscript he has written for a graphic novel (to be illustrated by Darin) about their romance, along with a clock, a cotton kimono, and tickets to Hong Kong. On Sunday, the couple enjoy an Indian Summer stroll in the park.
Les and Funky on a predawn jog.
Oct. 26-Nov. 9
Bull prepares to lead the football team into the conference championships, thanks to a winning streak that started with Owen’s game-winning TD catch while wearing the mascot costume. Owen’s heroics earn him and his friends a respite from being bullied at lunchtime. Linda’s long-lost daughter Mickey, heroine of the ‘Goats’ last championship in ’03, shows up out of nowhere. The Scapegoats go on to beat Big Walnut Tech 27-24. Readers see none of the actual game action but are treated to the sight of two players trying to douse Coach Bushka with an empty Gatorade cooler.
The ‘Goats’ second championship in twelve years brings the AD from Diversity University Ironton around to again woo Bull with the prospect of coaching DUI’s team, the “Fighting Consensus Builders.” Bull asks for time to consider the offer, during which time the women in his life browbeat him into accepting it. Meanwhile, DUI’s first coaching choice reconsiders and accepts the job. Les swings by Bull’s office to commiserate.
For the annual band fundraiser, Becky and Dinkle go door to door selling his autobiography in lieu of turkeys.
Dinkle the author again, this time writing the biography of Claude Barlow.
Funky and friends share unpleasant memories of that time they hired Ed Crankshaft to play Santa.
Funky is seen traveling via air during the Christmas rush. His gloom momentarily lifts when a text from “Dr. C. Hill” informs him that his medical test results were negative.
Cory comes home for Christmas.