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Tough Love
Season 7, episode 4
Tough love
Air date October 5, 1993
Writer(s) Ellen Guylas
Director Joel Zwick
Previous Wrong-Way Tanner
Next Fast Friends

Tough Love is episode four in season seven of Full House. It originally aired on October 5, 1993.

Opening Teaser

Michelle shows Stephanie that she can make her pig sock-puppet talk. What neither of them knows is that the "voice" is Joey, who is hiding in their closet.

Synopsis

Three-year-old Nicky and Alex are having behavior problems that are adversely affecting the lives of those who love them, and it gets out of hand when Becky and Jesse can't bring themselves to discipline them.

It all starts when they have a squirt gun battle, especially after when Danny and Vicky show up, as well as Joey. When Becky and Jesse tell them that playtime's over, they don't listen. Joey and Danny both confirm the fears in this episode: They're out of control. However, it seems that neither Becky nor Jesse know the meaning of the term "out of control", though Becky thinks she's the better disciplinarian, because she is harder on the twins than Jesse (who's always too soft, and butts heads with Danny about how hard he should be when kids get out of control). Danny notes the obvious: Kids need limits. And while Jesse and Becky say they do set limits, Danny thinks they haven't set enough limits, nor are they strict on those limits.

Next, when they play "hide-and-(go)-seek" in D.J.'s room (with Jesse as the "seeker"), the boys go over to hide in Stephanie and Michelle's room. But when Michelle comes into the room, she sees them destroying her science project (to the dismay of the studio audience), which was a model of the Solar System. And even worse, the "Sun" was, of all things, a grapefruit! So much so that when Nicky and Alex ruined it, it leaked (in Michelle's words) "Sun juice".

She alerts all the grownups to this debacle, and while Danny and Joey assure her that it was an accident and that the boys did not realize they did anything wrong, an angry Michelle lets on that Jesse and Becky should start making Nicky and Alex behave, so they make the boys apologize. But unfortunately, for Michelle, their apologies are not legit, as after Michelle asked if they were really sorry, they both shouted "No!" Danny assures her that she's a "big person" on the inside, not the outside. By that, he means generous; and he even allows her to demonstrate that with a hug to Jesse and Becky. So with that aside, he asks her to put the "Sun" in the juicer, and then Jesse decides to help Michelle fix her science project, but when he hears that the boys flushed Joey's watch down the toilet, that for him is the last straw. He helps fish Joey's watch out (he rolls up his sleeves to demonstrate his point), and after they misbehave at dinner (see below), that really is the last straw. He decides the time for Get Out of Jail Free cards is over and takes the twins to their bedroom for their first punishment, which is a time-out ("You're gonna go upstairs and sit there until it's time to come out, hence the term 'time-out'."). In addition, like any misbehaving kid, per Becky, two words: "NO DESSERT". Jesse feels guilty when the twins call him "Mean Daddy". That is one thing that Jesse does not ever want to be. Becky assures him that the twins obviously did not realize that what they said would be hurtful, nor did they realize that when they told Michelle that they were not truly sorry for what they did, that it would hurt her feelings even more.

Meanwhile, Vicky decides to cook dinner for the family for the first time, and she makes spaghetti with pesto sauce (which Michelle calls "green spaghetti") and goat cheese pizza for everyone, including D.J., Kimmy, and Steve. Danny, who fears that the girls are too finicky to like Vicky's cooking, bribes Stephanie and Michelle into giving Vicky compliments at the dinner table instead of complaints; he decides on a $2 raise in their allowance, however they decide on a $5 raise, and he grants them their wish, reminding them that they're going to pay him back when they're 30, as he can't believe what he just did. However, the girls reveal that they really like the new dish, so it seems their wish worked after all. Danny apologizes to Vicky, telling her that he knew how finicky the girls could be and that he did not want them to hurt her feelings before admitting that he should have had a little faith in her and her goat cheese. Vicky agrees with Danny about that and tells him that since he did what he did out of caring, she will forgive him—right after he does the dishes (which Danny quickly takes a liking to).

For dessert, everyone gets vanilla ice cream with chocolate syrup, and even the twins get them since they have behaved. What Becky doesn't know is that Jesse sneaked the ice cream upstairs, and confronts him about it in their room. While she mentions that at least she didn't hear "Mean Mommy", Jesse still thinks about why dads have to be harder than moms when it comes to discipline.

That night (as the inspirational music plays), Jesse and Becky continue to talk about how disciplinary they should be. Jesse adds that when he disciplined the boys, he acted like his dad, Nick (last referenced in "The Devil Made Me Do It"). Becky understands how he butted heads with Nick, as well as with Danny (who always thought he was too soft), but then he realizes that he does have to be hard sometimes, just that he does not want to be too hard like Nick or Danny, and Becky assures him that he does not have to; he just has to be hard, no more and no less. The twins are released from their time-out (as soon as the music stops), get their ice cream (as mentioned above), and then prepare for bath time and bedtime.

And to make the point clear, Jesse and Becky decide that the twins will sleep in their race car beds tonight – no big bed. The twins finally accept their fate (even actually saying "capiche") and get hugs from their parents as a result, and it is a happy ending indeed (as the audience "aws" and applauds, and the EP credits appear).

Quotes

Jesse: I'm not trying to be mean, it's just, uh, you kinda backed me in a corner down there in front of everybody with that pasta incident. I mean, uh, you don't want your old man looking like a weenie, do you?
Alex: Weenie.
Nicky: Weenie.
Jesse: No jokes. Sit down. Put the chair down, and sit down. Look, we're all on the same team here, let's just do this time-out thing and get it over with.
[Nicky and Alex give Bronx cheers (raspberries)]
Jesse: Okay, now you've gone too far. I'm trying to be a good guy. Nicky, Alex, you keep those little butts in those chairs and you do not move a muscle until I say it's okay. Do you understand me?
Alex: Mean Daddy.
Nicky: Mean Daddy.
Jesse: Mean Daddy?
Alex: Mean Daddy.

Trivia

The plot line for this episode is similar to that of "Crimes and Michelle's Demeanor" (season 4).

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