The whole gang is in the bar and they are having a spirited discussion over cops should have regular guns or Uzis. As Frank stuffs his mouth with Hoagie ingredients, a man walks into the bar. “Gino!?!” Frank calls out.
“You piece of shit!”
“You son of a bitch!”
They start going at it, the Gang is intrigued… until Frank smashes a beer bottle over Gino’s head. He’s Frank’s brother!
Gino (whom Dee and Dennis thought was dead, per Frank) tells the Gang he’s here to get Frank back for stealing the love of his life. But Frank says she’s the love of his life.
They recount the story and it starts in the 60s. An all-black jazz club, Gino was a bookie. The owner of the bar, Reggie, would come up short and Gino would always ask for a favor. This time, it was to give baby brother, 19 year old Frank a job at the bar since he loved the music.
And that’s where he met the love of his life, one of the singers, Shadynasty (Naturi Naughton). One night, she gets into a fight with Reggie and Gino tells Frank to drive her home. He complements her on her voice in the car ride and says he’ll open his own jazz club one day, one where white and blacks can come and enjoy the music together. (No Orientals though.)
Frank had to shove her face down though to keep the white people from seeing them together.
“You didn’t want to get caught out in the street in those days with a nigress.” #60sterms
Story continues, Frank and Gino open the jazz club and name it after Shadynasty. He made her the star of the club. And they fell in love. But Reggie pops in one night and is not happy. But since he’s been working on his temper, he’ll be mature about it and let Frank handle the “bitch” himself. Thinking Frank was in trouble, Gino comes in with a bat and nearly beats Reggie to death. Gino gets two years in the slammer and Reggie gets six… because he was black.
“Those were the days,” Frank says.
The 70s roll in and Gino is out of prison. They throw a party to celebrate and Frank finds out he’s doing drugs now and he’s even got a gun. Frank wants none of that trouble in his club, but Gino continues snorting lines of coke and dancing with half-naked guys.
One night, Reggie pops in again, but now he’s with the Black Panthers and is now Hakim Mohammed. He starts pulling something out of his coat and Frank comes in and shoots at him. Reggie was only pulling out a pamphlet. Gino says they’ve got to get Frank out of the country and ships him off to Columbia and promises to take care of Shadynasty.
In Columbia, Gino put Frank in charge of his cocaine connections there. He wrote to Shadynasty every night, but he never heard back. Instead he got himself hyped up on cocaine and banging Colombian women. He calls Gino and wants to come home, but Gino says things are still sketchy for him and the attempted murder.
But Frank sneaks back home anyway and is shocked by what he finds.
“And what I saw when I got home made me sick. What was once a clean, respectable jazz club had turned into a drug-filled disco shithole!”
Frank sees Gino… and Shadynasty all over him. Frank vomits.
He gives Shadynasty a choice: Live a life with him or live a life with Gino and drugs. She chooses drugs.
They get into a fight both in the 70s and in the present day and the Gang breaks them up.
Gino says he’s seen the new love letters Frank’s been sending but Frank says he hasn’t written to her in years. Gino then lets slip how he had destroyed Frank’s Columbian love letters. And now, here are letters from “your one and only” talking about raging balls and meeting at the airport today.
Well, it’s almost time for that meeting and Charlie the romantic suggests they all go and see this play out. They go to the airport and they find Shadynasty… who’s not as young as she was. Frank and Gino each make their case for her to choose them, but she actually chooses… Reggie!
“Everyone’s a lot fatter than I expected them to be.”
Shadynasty says Reggie was always her one and only, but he was in jail so much they couldn’t be together. Suddenly, TSA comes over and says Reggie is on a no-fly list and they ask him to come with them. He refuses and they drag him away.
The Gang goes to eat.
That was a fun episode. Sunny‘s flashback episodes have always been hilariously random.
The facial expressions Danny DeVito does just get me all the time. Those “Oh shit!” faces are killer. The biggest laugh for me from the episode though was Frank’s whole “nigress” line, not even for the line itself, but Kaitlin Olson’s delivery of the high pitched “Nigress!?!?” afterwards. That got me rolling for some reason. Maybe the combination of Kaitlin’s delivery and the WTF!? faces from the four of them to Frank continually dropping racist bombs. Lol
Naturi Naughton did a good job, though she’s definitely getting typecast lately eh? (Mad Men the Playboy Club). She does well though. And take a listen to her rendition of “Dayman.” Pretty good.
Overall it was a fun episode, creative, random episode.