Speechless–Season 3, Episode 8 (J-I–Jingle T-H–Thon)

This episode is this season’s Christmas episode and kicks off with a bang.

Well not a bang, but fire, as Ray is woken up in the middle of the night by Pepper’s barking, who is trying to alert the family to the Christmas tree somehow being set alight. Ray alerts the family, albeit by saying a TV show revolving around clowns falling is on. After everyone leaves the house and the fire is put out, which is revealed to have been caused by faulty Christmas tree lights, Ray is interviewed by a news crew on his heroic efforts. However he does mention Pepper, which leads to Pepper getting credit, attention and love for the rescue, much to Ray’s chagrin.

What is also covered by the news crew is Maya’s lie about the presents she got the kids, which backfires when a local charity offers to re-buy them the presents. This leads to the family volunteering for the Jinglethon to raise more money than the presents are worth, however they end up getting more gifts. When it’s announced that the charity will be donating the proceeds to the DiMeos, they admit the truth, which disgusts people into donating more money to the charity. I found this outcome to be a nice twist, not one you see in every story or subplot in a TV show.

Meanwhile, Kenneth gets the job of Lafayette’s girl’s basketball team. Although he is not pleased that he is coaching the girls’ team, it’s not due to sexism rather his complicated relationship with girls’ basketball as one of his sisters, Kendall, is a professional basketballer, and she and his other sister, KiKi, relentlessly rubbed his nose in it. JJ ends up taking Kenneth to confront his sisters, with the former finding out why the girls call him rather bizarre insulting nicknames. Kenneth finally has enough of their mocking and challenges Kendall on the court. While Kenneth ends up being slammed by Kendall, his team sees it as a testament to not giving up, which leads to Kenneth feels content with his job and himself as a basketballer. Kendall then lets him win the game. While I found the execution of the subplot a little silly, I did appreciate the character development with the introduction of Kenneth’s sisters and his acceptance of his new role.

Overall this was a good but not great episode, I feel that it fell flat as it progressed.



Stray Observations:

-Some of the nicknames Kendall and Kiki have for Kenneth include:

  • Broken stereo
  • British Airways
  • Good Halloween house

-Kenneth loves cheesecake.

-Apparently Dylan once put ghost pepper on Ray’s toothpaste which forced him to drink out of the toilet.

-Dylan was punching someone in her dreams.

-When Ray pictures himself as a dog, he is wearing a dog collar.

-The news crew mistakenly listed Ray’s name as Dolph.


Best one liners and interactions:

  • “Were you out clubbing?” “And does that look really work for you?” (Jimmy and then Maya to Kenneth on his outfit)
  • “Coach Cox took a leave of absence for some…troubling reasons…writing a novel.” (Dr Miller to Kenneth when he expresses interest in becoming a basketball coach)
  • “Are you a long lost third witch sister I don’t know about!?” (Kenneth to JJ about his sisters)
  • “You keep the presents’ name out of your filthy mouth!” (Dylan angrily to Maya, scaring her)
  • “We’re hiding from Santa-loving DiMeo haters!” (Maya on the family being hated when she admits the true worth of their Christmas presents which were replaced)
  • “This cheesecake factory sounds a lot like my terrible sisters!” (Kenneth)
  • “I wanted people to give out of love but disgust works even better!” (Candy to the family)

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