|The Prying Game|
|Season 7, episode 10|
|Air date||November 16, 1993|
|Previous||The Day of the Rhino|
|Next||The Bicycle Thief|
Joey, Nicky, and Alex are playing with a toy bowling set in the living room. Unfortunately, when they roll the ball, it misses the pins completely, so they make their own "strike" by running over and knocking down the pins themselves.
Steve pays a visit to the house, and gives Stephanie a note for D.J., which she had accidentally read when confronted by her sister, who was doing her hair upstairs in her room. As usual, Stephanie plays innocent, and successfully makes a break for it, because when D.J. tries to stop her former roommate, the hair dryer she's holding is still plugged into the wall, and the cord yanks her onto her bed.
While at a local public library, Stephanie sees an attractive blonde-haired girl giving Steve a peck on the cheek. Stephanie does not want to say anything to D.J. until she is sure that he is seeing another girl. That is why Stephanie and Kimmy break into Steve's apartment, so they can investigate. D.J. and Steve show up, and it turns out that the girl who kissed Steve was his cousin, Edie, proving that Steve is not seeing someone else. Noticing the odor from Kimmy's boot, D.J. goes ballistic and tells a stunned Stephanie to stay out of her life, adding that Stephanie is lucky that Steve did not call the cops. D.J. feels that, by breaking into Steve's apartment, Stephanie has reached a new low, even though Stephanie did point out she was trying to help her sister. Realizing she has been shown the door, Stephanie leaves, not even looking back at her former roommate (much to the groans of the studio audience).
Stephanie goes home. Later, D.J. also goes home and is still angry when Stephanie goes to her room and tries to talk to her and even tries to offer a bowl of fresh buttery popcorn as a truce. She calls her attempt to protect her older sister "an unfortunate side effect", but D.J. tells her she does not need protection and Stephanie can't joke her way out of what she did, even adding that there are several others she can torture, as D.J. herself has had to put up with the torture of her former roommate snooping in on the phone calls and reading the diaries for far too long, but as noted above, Stephanie breaking into Steve's apartment was not only a new low, but was going way too far. Seeing how upset D.J. still is, and taking her former roommate's advice of getting out of her life, Stephanie puts the popcorn bowl down and warns D.J. that her words may come back to haunt her and even bite her. She admits that while she messed up, one day D.J. might need her, but she won't be there to help her because she wants her out of her life forever. Stephanie leaves, slamming the door behind her. D.J., who is already beginning to feel guilty about what she said to Stephanie at Steve's and even guiltier about what she said to her while they were in her room, gets Stephanie to come back into the room and closes the door behind her (as the inspirational music plays), and then apologizes for saying those things; though Stephanie was hoping that she would miss her. She understands that Stephanie was looking out for her because she loves her and is her sister, and explains that she does not want her out of her life; she just wants her to stay out of her private life, just like when they were roommates. What that means is that Stephanie is to never disrespect D.J.'s privacy again (i.e. no more reading her diaries or snooping on her phone calls or breaking into Steve's apartment, etc.). D.J. even asks her former roommate if she was sure that Steve was seeing someone else, why she did not speak up about it in the first place, to which Stephanie says that she did not want D.J. to go through that pain if she was not sure (as in this case), because it put her in a very tough spot and she didn't know what to do.
Stephanie reminds D.J. that if something affects her, then it affects D.J., who says if she has a problem, she can talk to her, Danny, Joey, Jesse, Becky, or even Comet; basically anyone but Kimmy. Stephanie apologizes for what she did and promises not to snoop again, D.J. forgives her, and they hug each other. As the music stops, what neither of them knows is that Michelle is outside, listening in on their chat, but only Stephanie notices this, and former roommate thinks that current roommate may be picking up these habits from Stephanie. When Michelle sees the popcorn, she barges into the room, and all three of them dig into the bowl (as the audience applauds).
Meanwhile, Danny and Joey talk Jesse into making an infomercial for his new hair care accessory, and the infomercial turns out to be a disaster, especially when they discover that someone else invented the item first.
Kimmy: Ow, these boots are killing me. [She takes one boot off.]
Stephanie: [holds her nose] Oh. [Kimmy sighs in relief, while Stephanie waves her hand to clear the stench of Kimmy's foot; D.J. and Steve stop kissing and notice the odor.]
D.J.: Steve, what’s that smell?
Steve: I have no idea. Well, my goldfish died last week, but we flushed him.
[Stephanie has just made a bowl of popcorn as a truce with D.J., offers it to her, and tries to talk to her.]
Stephanie: You're ignoring me, right?
Stephanie: Hey, you talked to me! We're making progress here.
D.J.: You know, there are plenty of other people living in this house. Try torturing them for a change.
Stephanie: I wasn't trying to torture you. It was just an unfortunate side effect.
D.J.: Steph, you can't joke your way out of this.
Stephanie: I was just trying to protect you.
D.J.: Well, you don't need to protect me.
Stephanie: But you're my sister.
D.J.: You're a pain in the neck, I'm sick of it!
Stephanie: OK, fine! Maybe this time I messed up, but some day you'll need me. But I won't be there, because you want me out of your life forever! [She leaves the room and slams the door behind her.]
The episode title is a play on The Crying Game, a 1992 Oscar Award-winning film.
Kimmy saying that breaking into Steve's apartment to see if he was seeing another girl was "Nancy Drew's (Stephanie's) idea" is a reference to a fictional detective from a series of novels that was later adapted into a TV series.