Shut Your Parent Trap

Season 1
Episode 104
Air Date 10/24/13
TV-14

The fury of Mad Max continues! Pressured by who-knows-what new internal demon, Max calls in his entire sales team for an emergency late-night meeting at his hotel just as Sean snuggles up in bed with a cookie to watch Million Dollar Listing. When Sean's group arrives, Max tells them he ordered room service - and oops, he's accidentally killed the room service attendant! Max tells them they must hide the body immediately, eliciting universal screams; what a crazy, evil man he is! But suddenly, the attendant stands up and Max tells them this was simply an exercise to see how well they worked as a team. True to onerous form, Max announces that, judging by everyone's state of frozen terror, they all failed miserably. Max tells Sean to expect more of these exercises in the future, and if he hopes to keep his job, Sean had better whip his workers into shape. Seeing as they're online retail employees and not secret agents, Sean suggests that maybe Max should tone down the Armageddon scenarios just a tad.

When Max demands that Sean's team become a more locked-down, cohesive unit, Sean counters that their sales numbers have never been better. Honestly, the only thing they seem to perform poorly at is hiding corpses. The next day, Sean pops in on Max, determined to set the record straight and get the boss off everyone's back. But Sean's surprised to find Max's father, Lee, in the office, berating his son. He's a bilious, vile man (gee, where did Max get his charming personality from?). In an effort to impress his father, Max rakes Sean over the coals and then orders his entire group to work the weekend. Sean wonders when he'll be able to stick up for himself and his team with the boss - clearly it's not today.

When Sean tells his sales team about Max's weekend work party, the staff goes into revolt. Liz has an important date with an older lawyer she's seeing, and Hunter's band is playing the finish line at a local 5K race; they can't work this weekend! Sean tells them to remain calm as he works up a plan to fix things. Sean thinks Max is acting crazier than usual because he's trying to impress his psychotic father. If Sean can just get Lee to provide his son some form of positive affirmation, maybe Max will go back to just being normal crazy, as opposed to his current super-crazy state. But, Sean says, either Liz or Hunter should plan to work this weekend, Sean doesn't care whom; they can decide. As Sean leaves, neither Liz nor Hunter budges on giving up their weekend plans. This will be a battle of wills.

Noticing that Lee seems to have taken a shine to his mom, Sean smells an opportunity. His plan: get Lee to start treating Max kindly by trading a date with Lorna. Sean's talking Lee's language. Only problem? Mom. Sean approaches his mother and reminds her about how she's always criticizing his lack of initiative and power at work. Well, he has an opportunity to change that, but he'll need her help. If she goes on a date with Lee, Sean's standing at the company will improve thanks to his suppression of the Crazy Max issue. Lorna reluctantly agrees, but only if Sean teaches her how to use her new iPhone... she wants to be in the loop on things!

Liz and Hunter carp at each other with a few too-close-to-home truths for each other, neither one willing to give up a weekend for the other for the sake of work. Liz begs Sean to make the decision for them: what has a greater chance for success, Hunter's band... or Liz's love life? Just then, a gift from Lee arrives for Max. Sean plans to take the package to his boss immediately... it's just the thing that will get them all out of work this weekend! Upon hearing the good news, Liz and Hunter agree to set aside their differences and never tell each other the truth again.

Sean gives Max the gift from Lee, but when Max opens it to find a cheap, generic mug, Sean's hopes are dashed. It looks like Max may never get his father's approval. Max pulls out a bottle of alcohol and asks Sean to share a drink with him. After the alcohol kicks in, Sean and Max let their guards down with one another. Sean wonders why he and Max want their parents' approval so badly. They are adults! They need to stop worrying about what their parents think. Max feels liberated by the conversation and sets out to tell his father off. But when he finds out Lee is on a date with Lorna, and Sean admits his dubious plan, Max gets choked up. That Sean would pimp out his own mother... for him... no one has ever done something so nice for Max. Sean has proved his worth in spades.

Max and Sean confront Lee and Lorna on their dinner date. Sean tells his mother he may not be the boss of his own company, but he works very hard and is a good person and although he's not twelve years old and he doesn't necessarily need his mother's approval… he would really like it. On a teary roll, Sean continues to berate his mother as his composure wanes. Feeding off the emotion of Sean's speech, Max tells his father, "Sean is drunk. Thank you for the mug." Lee tells Max he doesn't have to make a speech; he is proud of him either way. Max follows Sean's example and begins to break down himself.

Later on, after a six-hour "how to use your iPhone" session with Sean, Lorna admits she knew how the phone worked ten minutes in; she just kept the act going because she likes hanging out with her son. Lorna also says she went on his company site recently and thought that, like Sean, it's perfect in every way. Sean is at first convinced there is something nefarious behind her praise, but when he realizes she's being authentic, he has to admit the warmness kind of stings!

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