Father of Invention (2010) Script

All things are intrinsically connected, no matter how different they may appear.

Hi. You know me... Robert Axle.

As a fabricator, I bring existing, often very different items together, maximizing their atomic and molecular potential, making ordinary inventions infinitely more prolific.

Thank you very much. We've got a big show today.

I've got lots of new items to tell you about.

In fact, you all remember the Robert Axle Light-O-Saurus.

Part humidifier, part night light, the Light-O-Saurus connects a child's need to feel safe at night with a parent's need to keep them healthy.

Then of course there was the Robert Axle Pepper-Cam, enabling us to pepper-spray our assailants and photograph them at the same time.

And now introducing my most inspired fabrication to date... the Robert Axle Ab Clicker.

You can channel-surf, watch your favorite programs, adjust the volume... all at the same time that you are getting that six-pack of abs.

You call the number right below on the screen here...

1-800-AXLES-ARMY.

You'll get 10% off on the Robert Axle revolutionary Ab Clicker!

Thank you. Thank you for coming. Thank you.

Thank you. Thank you.


17, 18, 19, 20.

There's your change.

Hey, Robert Axle! I see you!

Stupid Ab Clicker piece of crap! Robert Axle!

"Depraved indifference to human life."

What the hell does that even mean?

It means that people are too lazy to do sit-ups so they stick their fingers in places they shouldn't have stuck their fingers.

All right.

The good news there, Bob...

I got you a job. Family Mart... the fourth-largest discount consumer retailer in the nation.

The assistant general manager is Troy Coangelo.

You're to see him tomorrow at 9:00 AM sharp.

You do realize that I built my own

$1.6 billion company from scratch?

You're still a felon, hmm?

A felon who's had nothing but eight years to brainstorm.

And all I need is one good idea that puts me right back on top.

62% of ex-cons wind up back in prison within five years.

I just got out early for good behavior.

Could you let me enjoy that for two minutes before you start your buzzkill?

Claire Elizabeth Axle... that your daughter?

Yes.

And she knows you're gonna be staying with her?

Yes. And it's Claire Elizabeth now.

Smart... dropped the name.


There you go, sir.

Thanks.


Daddy!

Daddy.

Daddy, it's perfect.

It's perfect. It's perfect. I'm so glad you like it.

How did you know? How did I know?

I'm your father. I'm supposed to know what to get you for your birthday.

I have an idea. Will you ride with me?

Honey, I can't right now. I'm in the middle of doing some work.

Come on, just one ride. You have time for one ride, Dad.

Honey, you know I'm not much of a bike guy, all right?

So you ride your bike and I'll come and find you a little bit later.

Go on, go on, go on.

Happy birthday, baby.


I'm recording.

Jesus Christ, you look like hell.

When did you start smoking?

Around the same time you became a total self-absorbed prick.

You feel good frolicking around with $362 million of my money?

It's not your money. It's half your money.

The rest went to the poor innocent victims whose fingers you chipped off.

You wouldn't have this house or this life if it weren't for me.

If you think Jerry and I are gonna give you jackshit after all you did and did not do for me and Claire...

Whoa whoa, who's Jerry?

Jerry King... Lorraine's new husband and a huge fan of yours.

Axle's Army?

I'm a soldier.

Hey, baby. Hey, baby.

Jerry's a forest ranger.

He protects the land from the people and the people from the land.

Well, that is such a coincidence, 'cause I made about $40 million on the Robert Axle Swing 'n' Whack.

Part weed-whacker, part sand wedge.

Now you can... Trim your lawn and shots off your short game with the same device.

Yes, sir.

So, Ranger Jerr, since you're the new man of the house, you think you could let me crash here for a couple of nights?

Uh... Blow me.

Sorry.

Yeah, it's all right. Just let me take my car and go.

Can I have the keys, Lorraine?

Don't tell me she gave you my car. Did she give you my car?

It was a birthday present.

I could give you a ride.

Whee.

I love this sweet bitch.

Oh baby.

Come on, bring it to Daddy. Yeah.

Hey, look, your boy got you a little mini storage, all right?

It's on Fifth and Plymouth... some old prototypes, Axle memorabilia, personal effects and such.

Wait a minute. Let me get this straight.

You're living in my house. You're humping my ex.

You're driving my car. And you risk everything for my memorabilia?

Do you know why most people hate buzzards, Axle?

No, I don't.

Because they feed on carcasses... a fact that brings blame for a killing that they weren't even responsible for.

The buzzard is unjustly persecuted.

Right.

Aww.

You guys, there's a homeless man at the door.

All I have is two ones and a 20. Should I just give him the 20?

We're not letting a nutjob in. We're not letting him in.

I'm gonna slide it under the door. Guys, don't.

Calm down. Just 'cause he's homeless doesn't mean he's dangerous.

Guys, I can handle it. Just give me a minute, okay?

Let him in.

It's my father.

Just give me a minute.

Wow, look at you.

Wow.

Look at you.

L... I read about your girls' home.

Center for Women's Employment.

Anyway, I just thought I'd come by and tell you...

Where are you staying?

A shelter.

A shelter, a halfway home?

It's a shelter-home... a hybrid thing.

Well, it must be that one on Fulton and Sixth.

I heard it's supposed to be nice. They got new cots last year.

This is stupid.

I shouldn't have come here at all. I don't know why I did.

Obviously you've got your own life, your own career.

Wait.

Wait here.


Does he need a place to stay? 'Cause he could stay here.

He's not gonna stay here. He does not deserve to be around you.

You gotta shut him down, wall him off.

I mean, he loves you. He came to see you.

How does that mean he loves her? He's a user.

Take this. It's the rainy season.

You'll need it.

Thanks.


I'll give you one month. Let's go.

I can pay rent. It's not a problem. I don't want rent money.

Okay, well, at least let me pay for some groceries.

I don't want your grocery money. You'll get a job... a real job, 'cause at the end of 30 days you're on your own.

Hi. I'm Donna.

It's so nice to meet you.

Claire and I have been roommates since freshman year and I feel like I know nothing about you.

Well, I wish I could sit on my couch, but I can't, 'cause Captain Caveman's on it.

Who's that? That's just Phoebe.

You know, I'm studying for my LSATs. Dad wants me to be a lawyer.

He says it doesn't matter what kind. What do you think?

I don't know. Where's Phoebe from?

She's from Craigslist, back when we were looking for a roommate.

Now not so much.

She's a lesbian.

Really? Yeah.

I wouldn't have guessed that.

Oh, Claire, these eggs are so good... not too hard, not too soft. They're right where you want to be.

You really think that you can come in here and you can compliment her eggs, and that makes up for the fact that you've been MIA for the better part of her life?

Phoebe, can we not get into the whole MIA thing right now? Okay?

Do you need a bike? 'Cause if you do, you could totally borrow mine.

Donna, it's okay. He doesn't need your bike.

So, Phoebe, what do you do for a living?

She's a gym teacher. Oh, that's interesting.

You know, you don't meet that many lesbians who teach gym.

I'd rather be a lesbian gym teacher than the world's preeminent infomercial douchebag.

Hey, enough. Enough.

You know, I love inventions.

The Ped Egg, the ThighMaster, the George Foreman Grill...

I mean, they're amazing.

Donna, he didn't invent those.

Also I'm not really what you call an inventor, so to speak.

It's more... the term is "fabricator."

You mean liar?

Actually, according to Webster, "liar" is the fourth definition of "fabricator."

I can't believe you remember that.

Well, what's the first?

Well, the first definition is "someone who creates by combining existing, very often diverse standardized parts and brings them together." That's what I do.

Keep telling yourself that bullshit, Bob.

Thanks for breakfast.

And I'd love to stay here and have this pleasant chat, but the world's most famous infomercial douche doesn't want to be late for his first day on the job.

You have a job? Yeah, Family Mart.

What do they have you doing? Mopping the floors or cleaning the toilets?

Phoebe.

Robert Axle, as I live and breathe.

Uh, Troy.

Troy Coangelo.

Hey, you're 19 minutes late, but don't sweat it, man.

I can rig the time stamp on the punch-in clock to make sure you get credit for a full shift.

Great. Thanks.

Oh, and here is a pen and a pad in case you get one of your great ideas.

Oh, and we got guys in the break room to get you a foot massage, latte... whatever you need.

I thought this was a felon reform program.

You know what "felon reform" means? Apparently not.

It means you represent a monumental risk to my company.

And it also means if you show up late, forget to shave or so much as breathe at the wrong time, I have full authority to terminate your employment, no warning, no cause, no pink slip, just sayonara, kemosabe.

Wait, I'm confused. Am I fired?

No, but you're sure as hell not starting today.

So when am I starting?

Whenever you can show up on time. Presumably tomorrow.

Whoa, what are you doing?

Hi honey. Well, you know what?

I saw this leaning up against the wall and I decided to hang it up for you.

Well, did it ever occur to you that I didn't want it hung?

No, I didn't think about that fact.

You know what? I can take it down just as easily.

Oh my God, you got fired, didn't you?

Fired? Good Lord, no.

As a matter of fact, this is the first day that I feel I've done an honest day's work in a long long time.

In fact, I still had enough time to come home, reconfigure the fish tank and look at this... something I learned in prison...

I taught one of these guys how to shoot a basket. Which one is he?

Where is my mail?

Oh, well, I made you a terrific new mail recycling station right over there.

Now you can open your mail, drop in the bits you don't want right into that basket without having to walk all the way to the kitchen.

Yeah, it's probably more comfortable for you to be in your own room.

But, you know, I can bring the whole mail opening system into your bedroom.

Would you stop? Stop what?

Stop trying to be Joe Dad.

I'm sorry. You're right.

I'm done. I'm done. I'm sorry.

What was that?

It's the carbon monoxide detector I installed.

What was that?

Our new carbon monoxide detector.

Carbon monoxide? Nobody smokes in this house.

Donna. Yeah?

Donna. Yeah, come in.

Well, it's official. Everyone in this house hates me.

No, I don't hate you.

Actually I've been looking at your case and you gotta help me understand something.

You were charged for depraved indifference to human life, which requires recklessness.

Wasn't it the victims who were reckless, not you?

I mean, they are the ones who stuck their fingers in this...

Whoa whoa whoa, where did you get that?

Dad had one in the attic.

What the hell, Axle?

Argh!


Face or nuts?

What? You violated my fish, so I get a free shot. Where do you want it? Face or nuts?

I didn't violate your fish. I reconfigured the fish tank.

Then I hung up the paint... Face or nuts?

Face.

Oh!


Excuse me, can you point me to the bathroom?

You look like a smart guy.

Were you aware that these Steve Leslie discoveries were in fact discovered by someone else?

And they're not discoveries at all. They're fabrications.

So there's very little discovering going on.

Dude, I just want to know where the bathroom is.

It's in the back left corner of the store, behind Housewares.

What are you doing?

I'm just trying to think of ways that we can add value and make the customer more informed.

We? There's no we.

There's us... Family Mart, and you... felon who should not be talking to customers.

Oh my God.

Whoa.

You're...

I'm fried?

You're fired!


Axle.

You know me?

It's on your shirt.

Want to play some handball?

I'm a little busy right now.

You don't look so busy to me.

Where's your mother?

Go talk to her. Please, I'm so bored.

You look like a nice kid, but I'm right in the middle of something.

I'm sure handball would be a lot of fun, but...

Okay.

Argh!

Oh.

You're too fancy with your feet. All right, all right.

Oh, interference.

Are you accusing me of being a cheat? Just serve.

Oh, whoa whoa whoa. What is that?

A kickie. Since when are kickies allowed?

George. Gotta go. Bye.

My mom says you need a haircut.

What's the matter with my hair?

You look somebody I'm not supposed to talk to.


Ladies and gentlemen, the Robert Axle Air Cutter... part clippers, part vacuum, salon-caliber haircuts in the privacy of your own home without the hairy mess or the heavy prices.

Whoa, check out the new Axle.

Well, do you like it?

I was hoping it's all right. It's...

Yeah, you look distinguished, like a college professor.

You know, what would go good with that midlife crisis is an earring or maybe a Mazda Miata.

You know what would go great with that winning personality of yours?

A therapist.

Claire, where are you going? My mom's.

Wait up. I'll walk out with you.

Don't we have our own washer and dryer?

We have a washer and dryer. She doesn't want to be around you, douchebag.

You realize you're playing a plastic guitar?

Guitar or drums? What?

You rag on my Rock Band, I'm gonna kick your ass. Guitar or drums?

I didn't rag on your Rock Band. I was making an obser...

Guitar or drums?

Guitar?

I want to play guitar. You can play the drums.

It makes no sense to me that you would invite him to your fundraiser.

I cannot not invite him.

He lives with us. That's just rude.

Well, you live with the fish and you didn't invite the fish.

I did not come here to talk about Robert Axle.

Well, that's too bad, because Robert Axle is gonna be the only thing that people are talking about if you invite him to the gala.

And no one is gonna be writing a check for you if they know you're affiliated with that.

I get it.

Oh, I forgot. I have clothes.

I have clothes to donate to the women's center.

Ma, it's really okay.

Do you remember that single mother that you introduced me to?

I know she's got that job interview, so what about this for her?

Doesn't it just say, "Hire me," "Power" and...?

Oh, and you could pair it... Mom. Mom.

...with this fantastic leopard. Just look.

Mom. Just look. Watch.

If we don't raise the money we need to raise, can I count on you for a loan?

I swear to God, I'll pay you back.

I mean, you have offered a thousand times.

And you know what?

I'm really proud of myself that I'm not afraid to ask you for help.

It's a big step for me.

It's gone. What's gone?

The money's gone. I'm filing for bankruptcy.

You spent $362 million?

Well, you know, there were funds.

There were mutual things.

And you know what?

There's a lot of causes that I feel very strongly about, like that elephant rescue.

What about your album? It went gold. You sold 500,000 copies.

I bought 498,000 copies myself.

You're kidding me.

I wanted a gold record, okay? Is that the crime of the century?

You're right.

What do you mean, I'm right?

I'm a horrible horrible mother... horrible.

Mom.

Yellow is coming.

Yellow yellow yellow yellow, red red, blue blue.

Oh, this is incredible. This is like, feel like a rock star in the comfort of your own home.

This is one fabrication I wish I could call my own.

I know. It's like a drug, isn't it? The crowd is screaming for us.

Imagine this with a microphone.

Eight years with nothing to do but think, and I don't come up with one single good idea.

Dude, don't be so hard on yourself. I mean, you got a good job.

No, actually I don't anymore. I got fired from Family Mart.

Blue blue, red.

Wow, that's impressive. They have some real derelicts working there.

And then I bust myself trying to fix up this house.

I even hung that painting for Claire.

She hated it so much, I wish I'd never done it.

She wasn't mad. She's been trying to hang that thing since I moved here.

All right, tell me something about yourself besides the fact that you're an angry lesbian.

That's all I got. I got that part. Something else.

I got fake tits when I was 30.

They look real to me.

That's 'cause I had a take-back-the-night moment and I had them yanked out three months later.

Wow, that just totally threw me off rhythm.

Lorraine baby, come down. You're scaring us.

My daughter finally needs me and I'm broke.

It's only two stories. She won't kill herself.

The worst she could do is break her leg.

No, I could crack my neck.

Mom, I'll be okay.

I see this all the time in the forest:

Baby bird wants to leave the nest; mama bird gets all antsy, pacing, pecking.

She thinks baby bird doesn't know how to fly.

And she flies.

Does she?

Actually no.

A lot of times she dive-bombs into the ground, beak first.

Okay, that's not helping.

I don't care about the money, Mom.

Okay, but if I come down, you have to promise you're not gonna invite him.

I will not invite him. I promise.

All right.


Stop, okay? I heard you. What do you want?

Hi!

Claire!

Yeah, I heard you. What do you want?

I thought we could go for coffee.

What? No, you're not coming with me.

What?

So what is it with your mother and this music crap?

It's not crap. It's her thing.

So Phoebe tells me that you sew clothes for the women at the center. How long have you been doing that?

Is it okay if we don't talk?

Just trying to start a conversation.

I like magazines more than books.

And I really enjoy bingo.

I like bingo.

And I've been having rabid erotic sex since I was 15.

I don't need any of the details.

The guy was 39.

Oh, stop it.

You are kidding.

Yes, I'm kidding.

Did you give me this jacket because it's rainy season or because you wanted me to look like a tool?

A little bit of both.

Huh.

Thanks. You're very welcome.

Hey, are you hungry?

I could eat.

Yeah, me too.

See, some people think jumping jacks don't do anything.

Well, I'll tell you what, Abby... you do these jumping jacks for 30 minutes, you're gonna sweat your balls off. This shit is hard.

All right, now we're doing windmills. I'll tell you what, Savannah... you want a boy to text you, you do these windmills.

You want a date to the prom, do windmills.

Andre, you want the girls to think you're hot, do windmills.

Hi. What are you doing here?

Sorry. I hate to disturb you in the middle of your class, but I just... I need your help.

I'm really busy enriching these kids' lives.

No, that's great. I just need...

Andre, toes. Toes, not shins. Toes.

I need a new outfit.

Are you sure this is the right store for me?

I'm trying to make you cooler, you see, not go to the stores that you usually go to... the uncool ones.

I haven't been to a store in quite a long time, frankly.

Hey. Hey.

Hey.

He needs to exchange his suit.

Six bucks.

Six bucks? This cost me four grand.

I sold my first fabrication in this. This is my lucky goddamn suit.

I don't think it's lucky anymore, do you?

Don't sell it then. Use your parolee money. I don't care.

I don't have any more, all right? I had to buy stuff.

What did you buy?

You know, taxis, donuts, deodorant.

I'll go up to seven bucks.

Looks good. I feel like an asshole.

You are an asshole, but you look better.

I look like a lesbian. You look gender-neutral.

Gender-neutral? That wasn't exactly the look I was going for.

It's cool. It's like urban DJ.

Right.

Lily!

Lily!

Lily! Did you lose your dog, ma'am?

No, it's my daughter. I can't find my daughter.

Oh, is that her? Hey. Lily, Lily.

Don't ever do that.

Don't ever run away from me again like that.

You scared Mommy. Do you understand what could happen to you?

Oh yeah, saving the day.


Steven Leslie.

Robert Axle.

How's the family? How's Claire?

Fine. How's my $1.6 billion company?

It's 2.7 now.

Oh, you feel good about that, huh? Sucking off the Robert Axle teat?

Your name on the product... you take the fall when it disfigures people.

My name was the product.

Face it, we could have put birdshit in a box and we would have moved three million units as long as it was a Robert Axle fabrication.

What do you want, Axle?

Steve, we live in the world where parents are so paranoid about losing their children that they're willing to put a leash on them just to keep track of them.

Now imagine if that leash were wireless.

The kid doesn't feel like a dog; the parents know the instant the kid wanders out of a certain range; they get a vibration on a receiver; they know where their kids are.

Wireless child leashes already exist, Axle... not big sellers.

And you know why? Why?

Because nobody's ever thought to market them to kids.

Say we bury the leash technology inside of a kid's watch, but not just any watch.

I mean, this is like the coolest, the greatest, the grooviest gadget watch ever invented.

It's... are you ready for it?

Watchdawg.

Right? It plays music, video games, emails. It takes pictures.

Everything plays music and video games and takes pictures these days.

What, have you been living under a rock?

Steve, you're missing the point.

This is about bringing together a child's need to be entertained with a parent's need to keep them safe.

All things are intertwined, Steve.

And all we gotta do is step out of the way and let atoms and molecules show us how easy it is...

Wait, did you just say the atoms and the molecules?

You know how hard it was for us to distance ourselves from you?

Do you know how hard it is for me to distance myself from me?

Axle, from my heart, I would love to help you, but I can't.

Jesus Christ, Steve. I gave you your first job.

Good luck. You're gonna regret this.

This is Robert Axle.

Can I speak to Mr. Johnson, please?

Edward? Yeah, Ed.

Who did you say was calling? Robert Axle.

The Robert Axle? The infomercial guy?

Yes, that Robert Axle.

Well, listen...

Mickey, is this you joking around again?

No, look, the whole...

Yeah. Yeah, formerly... hello?

Bob Agzel.

Robert Axle? Agzel.

Hello.

Yeah, hi. Somebody just called me from this number.

They left a message about a pitch, but I didn't get a name.

Oh, sorry about that. No my name is...

Troy Coangelo. Troy Coangelo.

Troy Coangelo.

Okay, and how do you spell that?

T-R-O-Y.

Yeah, no, I got that part.

Oh, C-O-A-N-G-L-O.

Really? No E after the G? Nope.

And you do have a working prototype?

Ha. I wouldn't be calling if I didn't.

Oh, now is really not a good time.

Matt leaves for Dubai on Wednesday.

We're gonna have to get you in on Tuesday. How's 9:00 AM?

Uh, let me just look for a second.

Mr. Coanglo?

Yeah, I can make Tuesday work.

Okay. All right, great. We'll see you then.

Okay, thank you very much.

Excuse me. I wonder if you could help me.

I'm looking for Sam Bergman's room, please.

You're new around here.

Yes, I guess you could say that.

Well, let me show you. Okay, thank you.

Now you can't have Sam's room, 'cause Sam ain't passed yet.

I'm sorry?

But I can see why you'd want it, because it's got a good view, it's close to everything, but...

Yeah, I think you misunderstood. I'm just here to visit Sam.

I'm not actually moving in.

But Sam ain't passed yet, so you can't have his room.

Now this room here... this will suit you just fine.

As a matter of fact, I tried to get this room, because across the hall here... this is Miss Miller's room.

And ooh-ee, Miss Miller... she is all right.

Great. Harold, hold that thought. I'll be right back.

Not a bad place.

It sucks.

Yeah? Try prison.

Prison is avoidable. Senility is not.

Well, what the hell do you want?

I can't just come by and visit the best engineer I know?

I told you people would get tired of doing crunches.

You should have listened to me.

You didn't tell me people would get sick of doing crunches.

You told me we needed more testing.

And you were right.

Again I ask, what do you want?

A prototype.

I'm retired.

This is a gadget watch for kids.

Combined with what? A garden hose?

How about a catcher's mitt?

How about child leash technology?

There are so many kids getting lost out there these days, Sam.

We gotta do something about it.

What makes you think that I will work with you again?

'Cause you need this as bad as I do.

Five grand, five days.

Done. You do have the money?

No, but I'll get it.

No money, no prototype. I mean it, Axle.

This is a brilliant concept. I can't believe someone else hasn't done it yet.

And it's not like you're asking for a lot of money here.

I mean, five grand's nothing when it comes to prototypes.

Neil, you cannot possibly know how relieved I am to hear you tell me that.

Can I interrupt you for a second? Okay, you know how people always blow out the candles on a birthday cake and then they expect everyone to want to eat it with their germs all over it?

Introducing the Neilster.

Okay? I could have bronchitis and be blowing on your birthday cake.

May I?

It's good, right?

Showed my boss the business plan... signed off on a deuce that afternoon.

A deuce?

Yeah, it's loan officer talk for 20K.

You know what K means, right?

I don't have a business plan.

You don't have a business plan? Shh.

My business plan is the $1.6 billion empire I built.

Don't write that down.

Just give me one moment here.

What are you d...?

Okay, anything else I should know before I run this up the flagpole?

No, that's it.

Good. My boss hates surprises.

I am also a convicted felon.

I'm sorry?

I'm a convicted felon.

Oh.

I'm not sure if we give loans to convicted felons.

I've got a gut feeling about you though.

And my boss is big on gut feelings.

Neil, thank you.

Thank you. Thank you so much.

And this... it's a great idea.

Give me just a moment, okay? Okay.

Okay, we've got a new customer... 5K.

I've got a good feeling about this one.

This gentleman right over here.


Jerry!

Ranger Jerry!

Jerry!

Hey. Punks!

Upsetting my fritillary butterflies.

That's an endangered species, Axle.

You'd better not come back!

Jesus!

Shit, my fault.

Well, I hate to bother you while you're working, but I need to borrow five grand.

Axle, you're my boy, man.

I'd hook you up just on principle.

But me and Lo... we're a little strapped for cash at the moment.

Strapped for cash? That's impossible.

How can you go through $362 million in eight years?

It's easier than you think, man... charity, bidding wars on eBay, trips.

It costs 86 grand a day just to rent your own submarine.

Tell me how much she blew on this so-called music career of hers.

Let's just say she made a lot of videos, a couple at Mount Rushmore.

Oh man, I gotta go to this fundraiser thing, man, before Lorraine kills me.

You see? That's another reason you're broke... too much philanthropy.

What is it now? Oh, let me guess... the Indigenous Giraffes' Sperm Foundation for the Pigmies Who Have Lung Cancer and Don't Have Mosquito Nets Foundation?

It's Claire's event, Axle.

We teach them interview skills and how to build a resume.

The women are really using the resources we provide for them to go out into the world and find jobs on their own.

This is an amazing project. You should be very proud.

Thank you. Oh, this is my roommate Phoebe.

I'm a lesbian.

Oh, isn't that wonderful for you?

It is actually.

Well, have you guys seen the silent auction?

No, I haven't seen it yet. I would love to.

Don't you take one more step, Axle.

You have to leave now.

Hey, it's a fundraiser, Medusa. I'm here to raise funds.

Medusa. It's like Madonna, but it's...

Hi Axle.

Hi. Somehow, someway none of these people know you're associated with Claire.

Then it shouldn't be a problem that I'm here.

You're a piece of work, you know that?

I'm a piece of work? You're the one that blew $362 million.

At least I lost my half giving it to my victims. What's your excuse?

My excuse is that money was cursed. It took me eight years and every fiber of my being to get rid of it, and now that it's gone, I'm so glad...

Hi Axle. I'd like you to meet my parents... Howard and Penny Camp.

Hello. Hello.

How nice that you and Lorraine can put aside your differences to support Claire on her special night.

Well, Claire has always come first in our family.

Listen, Axle, l...

I'll admit that when I found out that my daughter Donna was gonna be living with a convicted felon, that I was... I'm sorry... rather uncomfortable.

But then we started going through some of Donna's old stuff.

Getting ready to convert her bedroom into a guest room.

And they found my old Light-O-Saurus.

And when we heard that you had designed that for Claire back in the day, well, we were damn near moved to tears.

He is good.

Isn't this wonderful... this event? Just wonderful.

Penny Camp, what is it about this event that's so wonderful?

People helping people.

Bingo. You said it.

That's it. In a word... community.

Culture and community.

Ladies and gentlemen, if all of us could do just that... come together as a community, as a culture...

I mean, ask yourselves this question:

How many women has this center helped get off drugs just this year?

God, he thinks it's a drug center. Community, culture.

Culture, community.

Believe me, when I started my company I hadn't a pot to piss in.

Look at these women on these walls, putting things in their bodies that just harm them.

And this place helps that.

Well, all of you should get out your checkbooks right now and write a big check for my daughter.

There's no reason she should have to do this for herself.

We've all got to get on this bandwagon.

Let's make that wall of success a world of success.

What do you say?

Hi.

What the hell was that?

Well, I don't know. You tell me. Seems to be some big event that everybody got invited to tonight except me.

That's exactly why I didn't invite you... that speech.

What's the matter with my speech? I was doing my bit.

I had them eating out of the palm of my hand.

It's a center for women's employment, not a drug rehab.

That's how blind you are.

Well, what difference does it make? Drugs, employment... it's all about helping p... all right, never mind.

You don't have to worry about me anymore, 'cause you know what?

I've got a whole new thing happening, and come Tuesday...

Let me guess... the great Robert Axle will be back in all his glory.

God, it's like you want me to stay like this... homeless, without a job.

Would it really be so bad if I started to do well again after what I've been through?


My parents thought you were awesome.

And that speech was amazing.

Don't give up, Axle.

You guys will figure it out.


Okay, item one... one-of-a-kind Light-O-Saurus signed by Robert Axle, as seen in the original infomercial, 2500 bucks...


Daddy, you did it. You sold it.

No no, baby, we did it.

We sold it.

And you know why?

You brought my picture with you?

Yes, I did.

Oh goodness. Oh goodness.

Oh my goodness, what happened?

It's unbelievable how cute you are.

Oh, you think she's giggling?

You're gonna like what I have to give you even better.

Oh.

You should have grabbed yourself a raincoat, Axle.

Oh thanks. I would have never thought of that.

How are things going with your daughter?

Uh, good.

Yeah? So she's getting past her abandonment issues?

I mean, most kids never really forgive their parents for going away to prison.

I'm sorry, who are you?

Part parole officer, part uncle, part therapist.

Yeah, well, why don't we just stick to the part parole officer part?

Okay, how are things going at Family Mart?

You know, what can I say? Family Mart is Family Mart.

Troy told me he had to let you go.

You know, a big part of this program is keeping a steady job, Axle.

67% of felons wind up going back to prison...

Whoa whoa whoa, you just told me last week it was 62%.

Did I? Well, there's a new report.

The numbers have gone up.

Oh great.


Phoebe. Phoebe! What?

Phoebe! What?

Where's Rock Band?

Son of a bitch. Ooh.

What happened?

My ex... that bitch stole my shit!

Wow, things are nasty when chicks break up.

Oh, it's gonna get really nasty!

Oh shit.

Hi. Hi.

I'm here to make a deposit. Okay.

Oh, you're with the center.

I love that. I was just telling my sister all about it, how they help the women... That's right.

...with jobs and everything. That's great.

Oh.

Do you know you've bounced a couple of checks this week?

Hey, have you applied for any grants?

Yes, grants are really hard... sorry, hold on one second. Well, maybe...

One second, sorry. Donna. Claire, I have to tell...

I'll call you back, okay? No no no no.

Just don't do anything stupid. I'm not gonna do anything stupid.

I'm just gonna march up to the door and I'm gonna be like, "Give me back my Rock Band, bitch!"

Donna, I'm busy. Wait, Phoebe...

What up, Phoebe? Bitch, give me back my Rock Band.

Whoa, what's with the Louisville Slugger?

What, did you join the all-dyke softball league?

Hey! Give me back my Rock Band.

Then give me back the $4200 that I spent on your fake titties!

Stop talking shit about my tits. They're great, asshole.

You want your game? You want your game?

Your ex is a guy? I thought you were a lesbian.

I am.

Here's your game. Here you go.

Don't break it.

How about some drums, huh? You want some drums?

Yeah? Yeah?

Who the hell is he?

You're worthless, Phoebe. You are worthless.

You're never gonna get a man like me. What are you gonna settle for?

You don't even know who you are. You're nobody without me.

Come on, let's go.

Drive. Drive.

Bye.

Oh, look, forget about him. He's an idiot.

I had to shut him down. Somebody had to stop him.

He's an idiot. And he's a liar too.

'Cause anybody who looks at him can tell he's still in love with you.

He thinks you're more beautiful now, more attractive, more intelligent.

I mean, look at you. You're funny. You've got this great style about you.

And he's a total idiot for thinking... you know what? He's probably feeling like a total fool... the fact that he used to have you and now...


How was your day, Claire?

Horrible. I'm so over everyone.

I hate people.

You know what? Everywhere I go people go on and on about the center, and when push comes to shove, nobody wants to pony up.

What's wrong with you? I didn't say anything.

I know. What am I supposed to say?

It's weird. You're acting weird. I'm not acting weird. I'm acting...

Tonight I'm having a date with my friend Jack, if anybody wants to join me.

Donna, where are you going?

I'm going to your mom's house.

You're going to my mom's?

Yeah, well, she picked up my phone calls.

Wait, did I miss something?

My parents are getting divorced, but things happen.

Divorced? Since when?

Since my father started cheating on my mom with her friend.

My God. See you.

Donna, if you're going to my mom's house, we're all going to my mom's house. We're all going?

Oh, like you have something better to do?

I, on the other hand... I have a date with a woman.

She's a lesbian.

Ugh.

We're gonna have hot lesbo sex all night long.

Would you rather lick a public toilet seat or chew gum from the floor of the New York City subway?

Gum. You know what? No matter how disgusting it is, it's better than a toilet. By the way, how were the toilets in prison, Axle?

Not very good, kind of like your last album.

Okay, you see some unsightly Porta Potties in my line of work, okay?

So I would chew that subway floor gum all day, every day.

How do you call this a game?

Monopoly, Scrabble... those are games. This... this is disgusting.

Hey. Hey.

This is my friend Steak. Hi.

What's up? Steak, a chicken wing?

Nah, dude, I'm a vegetarian.

Really? How is that gonna work out since Phoebe likes your meat?

There's other things I like to eat besides meat.

Would you rather spend 30 years happily married to the love of your life only to find out that he's been cheating on you the whole time, or spend 20 years taking care of your deadbeat husband who finally hits the big time only to emotionally abandon you and your daughter?

I'll talk to her.

Awkward. All right.

I thought this was supposed to be a party.

How could he do this to me?

Donna, I think in the moment he wasn't doing it to anybody.

I think he was doing it for himself.

I don't care. When you decide to start a family, you make a commitment to them.

You don't turn your back on the people who love you.

Fathers are human too.

You know, you put a piece of cake in front of us, and that's all we can see. Family, children... what?

No, we forget everything. We get tunnel vision.

But you never cheated on Lorraine.

No, I didn't.

I left her for my job.

I'm just so angry at him.

Yeah, there's a lot of anger in the air.

Think it does any good?


Phoebe, you know, are you and my dad friends or what's... what's the deal?

No. I mean, he helped me get my guitar back from Eddie... you know, my game... and that's it.

Wait, he met Eddie?

Yeah, I mean, I wouldn't call it a formal "Hi, how are you doing?"

But he did crack Eddie in the nads for me from behind, like mm!

You know, I think your dad's pretty great, Claire.

What makes him so great?

He just made me realize that my father isn't perfect and I need to accept that.

No, Daddy, don't leave. I'm afraid of the dark.

Okay, honey. Okay.

I'll stay for just a bit, okay?

How's that?

Shh, it's okay.

You can watch the steam.

Look at that.

We can make animals.

Shh, it's okay.

Does my heart good, makes me feel young, you know?

I tell you, my mind's sharp.

As a matter of fact, I don't know if they could really run this place around here if it weren't for me.

Hello, Sam.

You brought my check, right?

Of course I did.

I had to go into my own pocket on this thing.

You won't believe how many watches, MP3 players and video games I tore apart before I figured this sucker out, not to mention carving the faceplate.

I cut that son of a bitch out of medium-density foam.

Well, you know, I don't have any more money. $5000 is all I have.

Don't worry about it. It was my pleasure.

I haven't felt this useful in years.

There it is.

Now the speaker is in the ear.

The camera is in the nose.

The gaming wheel goes in the wristband for optimal gaming control.

Oh, Sam, this is awesome.

And what is that? That's a built-in compass.

Do kids still use compasses? They did in my day.

I just thought with the wireless child leash we wouldn't need a compass.

A wireless child leash?

That's a good idea.

The kid wanders off... the parent feels a buzz or something, huh?

You're kidding, right?

No, I'm not kidding. That's a great idea.

Sam.

I did good, right?

I did good.

Sam, you did great.


How are you holding up, Troy?

I have four titanium rods in my tibia.

How do you think?

I'm sitting on another great idea, Troy.

Congratulations.

Yeah, but I can't do it alone this time.

I need a partner.

I make $32,700 a year.

I drive a Toyota Scion loaded.

You're barking up the wrong tree, Axle.

I just need you to come with me to one meeting.

When? Tomorrow morning?

Oh, tomorrow morning? Thanks for the notice.

Look, I was gonna go on my own, but now that the prototype doesn't work, it makes no sense for me to go...

What's the point of the prototype if it doesn't work?

Troy, no one is going to buy a product from a guy who cuts people's fingers off.

But Troy Coangelo... that's a different story.

No can do.

Come on, just help me on this one, please.

I'm on from 7:00 to 7:00 tomorrow.

What difference does that make? So Family Mart goes without an assistant GM for a couple of hours. What's the worst that can happen?

A lot. Oh, come on.

A lot can happen. Come on.

If you don't let go of this obsession you have with Family Mart, Troy, no one is gonna ever take you seriously.

Hmm.

Haven't you ruined enough people's lives?


Hey.

Hi.

It might be a little snug, but I think we can make it work.

That's for me?

Here, try it on.

Let me see.

Yeah, it's a little snug. Let me fix it.

Is this like the pink coat or you really want me to...?

I want you to look great.

Okay, let me finish it.

Why are you doing this?

I was the one that believed in you, not Mom.

It was me.

And I still believe in you.

Um, I'm not really a hugger.

Okay.

Jesus, Troy.

I blew my knee out on their nickel.

Not a card, not a "Hey, Troy, how's your leg?"

I've been assistant GM for three years and you know what?

There's no GM. I'm the guy.

They just don't want to give me the title and have to shell out an extra $1631 a year.

Where are you going with this, Troy?

Shame on you. Shame on me?

Not you... Family Mart.

I'm confused. Are you gonna help me out or not?

Oh, I'm gonna help you, but it's not for the money, it's not for the ladies and it's not for the bling.

This is for principle.

How many painkillers have you had?

One.

Well, I may have had an extra Xanax or two.

I just get really nervous in meetings, especially big ones.

Okay, I'm gonna put my bike in the back and I'll drive, okay?

Can I help you? Troy.

Hmm?

Hi. We're here to meet Mike James. Matt James.

Matt James.

Aren't you Robert Axle?

This is my partner Troy Coangelo.

I think you spoke to him on the phone and set up the appointment.

I sure did. I made an appointment with Troy.

I did not make an appointment with Robert Axle.

We're partners. What difference does that make?

The difference is that I had no idea that you were coming.

I'm sorry, is there some problem?

Robert Axle. Wow.

Come on in.

It's good to meet you guys. Great to meet you, Matt.

Troy Coangelo. Where did you get that receptionist? She's really on the ball.

Oh yeah, Sheila? She's amazing.

Yeah, you don't want your receptionist being too hot... makes things complicated.

She's my wife.

Hey, Sheila, would you be a doll and get me a diet soda?

Yeah, I'll get right on that.

Ta-dah! Presenting the Watchdawg.

Wow, that is awesome.

This thing plays MP3s, music videos, also takes photographs, but here's the most unique thing about it...

It's also a wireless child leash.

Does the prototype work? Does a bear shit in the woods, Sheila?

Send it a test to

Let him hear the music.

Actually I think I might have forgotten to load the music, Troy.

Email just bounced back.

We're not gonna lie to you, the prototype is a little shaky.

Look, I'm not gonna say that this is in perfect shape, but this can be improved upon. It is a great idea and l...

I don't know how to tell you this, but honesty is the best policy here.

I met with Steven Leslie two days ago.

He pitched something practically identical to that.

He's coming out with it. It's called Watch Pal... fast-tracking it, wants it in play for the holiday season, wants us to co-finance.

I met him a few days before you did.

I pitched him this and he turned it down.

I'm sorry to hear that.

You know why Family Mart is the fourth-largest discount consumer products retailer in the nation?

No, I do not.

Because it's not Target and it's not Kmart and it sure as hell not Walmart.

It's Family Mart... the copycat, the poser, the wannabe.

So if you want to invest in the Family Mart version of Watchdawg, be my freakin' guest.

Oh, in case anybody was wondering who might have gotten a six-figure advance for the invention of a brand-new groundbreaking fabrication, that would be me... Robert Axle.

Yes, the same Robert Axle who went to prison for eight years, but now... did I mention the six-figure advance?

Anyway, I'm back. Things are looking better than ever.

Of course I'm gonna have to share some of that money with my new partner Troy Coangelo.

Somebody stole Donna's identity.

Yeah, and then they racked up a credit card bill for $5000.

Yeah, and then had the card sent to a mailbox place right around the corner.

Look, girls, this is not a problem, all right?

I've got a check in my pocket for $125,000.

Let's not let a $5000 check get us upset, all right?

I'm gonna pay off that credit card before the first bill comes in.

You are a liar and you are a fake and you are a phony.

I was rooting for you this whole time and you steal from me?

No, I didn't steal from you. I borrowed from you.

Claire, don't let them do this, all right? Listen to me. Trust me.

I did trust you.

Look, baby, you want to fund your center?

Give me six months. We'll have enough money to fund 10 centers.

There's no we. There's no we.

It's only you. It's always been only you.

I give you five minutes to get the hell out of here or I'm calling the police.


There's just that sense of security that you have when you're wearing Watch Pal.

I mean, what do kids love? A pal, a friend.

I mean, this is the product that a kid can say, "Hey, this is my pal. I have my pal with me."

Please tell me this is gonna be okay, Axle.

We're gonna be fine. We're gonna be fine?

I don't know if you noticed, but it's the same price.

He has got more games, and to be honest, it looks a hell of a lot cooler.

None of that matters. Kids love robots.

They don't have compasses. Kids don't use compasses.

Maybe they need to.

Maybe you should shut your mouth. Hey, guys, enough.

Now look, I'll admit he's got a great product.

It's futuristic. It's got a personality.

That's not making me feel any better.

But what he doesn't have is me, the first invention from Robert Axle since the one that maimed 3000 people.

Nobody has more to prove. Nobody's got more eyes on them.

An invention? I thought we were calling them fabrications.

We're gonna get rid of that word, 'cause that word is just tripping people up.

Let's call it an invention. Call it whatever people need to call it to know that this is the answer, that this is what one of the most prolific inventors in modern history has been thinking about for the past decade... an idea with so much promise, that's gonna so profoundly impact child safety that everyone's gonna forget about all their missing fingers.

Write that down. Write what down?

What he just said. It's important. Before we forget, write it down.

Isn't that Sheila's job? Write it down.

No, whoa whoa, don't write on that.

Okay. What is it? It's just my good luck charm.

All right, look... ooh.

Ow, that hurt. Knee to the head... not good.

Look, in life you have to help your partner.

Percy, way to get up high.

Look at Conner Ann, man. Wow, you guys are doing good.

Good rope climbing, impressive.

All right, you're disgusting. You smell.

Get the hell out of here.

Good work. Good job.

What do you want?

Could you give this to Claire for me?

What is that?

It's an invitation to the Watchdawg launch.

Well, why don't you give it to her yourself?

'Cause she won't take it from me.

She won't even answer her phone, return my calls.

I wonder why.

Hey, I didn't steal that money, all right? I was borrowing it.

I was doing everything I could to save her business.

You were trying to help yourself.

Well, the two aren't mutually exclusive.

What you did is not some sort of Robin Hood thing.

I mean, it was selfish. It was wrong.

And frankly, it's the same shit you've been doing to her since she was a kid.

Look, I'm a father and I'm not gonna apologize for trying to give my daughter a great life.

You could have just mailed that.

What?

Your stupid invite... you could have mailed it.

You didn't have to come here to launder it through me.

I mean, this isn't seventh grade.

Um...

I wanted to see you.

It's the tits, right?

Excuse me?

Are they too low?

What are you talking about?

Well, 'cause, you know, we kissed a few months ago and I thought it was really good.

And I don't know what you thought, but you got to my tits and you shut down.

Would you stop saying that word?

Tits? Yeah.

Phoebe, I think you're terrific, but the tough guy talk... it just sells you short.

And I shut down because you're my daughter's friend.

And the tits are fine, all right? They're not too high.

They're not too low. They're just right where you want them.

Can I meet you guys at the table in one second?

Okay, happy birthday. Love you. Happy birthday. We'll be right here.

We've got news.

Big news.

You're pregnant?

No, we're moving to Tampa.

Tampa? I just want to relax enjoying my husband for a while.

Wait, what's this really about?

We got an offer on the house... furniture, cars, everything as-is.

So the only thing left is your little blue house.

And with any luck, we're gonna sell that today.

Wait, to who? To you.

The price is $1.

Make the check payable to Jerry King.

Guys, this is really not necessary.

Sweetie, I think it's adorable that you're working in a coffee shop, but you had a career, and a good one.

I will get back to saving the world at some point, but right now I just need a break.

This is not a break. This is a cop-out.

Claire, your mother loves you.

She just doesn't want to see you make the same mistake she did.

Letting Robert Axle ruin her life?

Not forgiving him.

I'd better go back to work.

G54.

L26. Oh, this is for you.

It's from your dad. He came by my school.

You still talk to my dad?

G49.

I kissed him, okay?

You kissed him?

I'm sorry. I really feel like crap. I just...

You should feel like crap. Donna, you're not helping.

I'm not trying to help. After everything he's done, she's being nice to him?

O61.

It's just that he makes me feel, like, funnier than I thought I was and less hideous.

B5.

I don't know, it just felt good not to be pissed off.

I'm sorry.

Bingo! I got bingo.

Bingo.

What's next for one of the most prolific and unpredictable inventors in modern history?

In the room today, financial movers and shakers, also the tech-savvy parents and kids who are just excited to see this latest invention.

Did I tell you we're having a boy?

No, Matt, you didn't. Congratulations.

Thank you. I really wanted a boy.

You know, Matt, I haven't said it. I really ought to before I go out there.

Not a lot of people would have taken a second chance on me.

It means a lot to me. Thank you so much.

I won't let you down.

Axle, I didn't take a second chance on you

'cause I'm a good guy.

I did it because I honestly believe that you're gonna make me one of the richest men in the world.

Sorry I'm late. Hey, Sheila.

The traffic was brutal.

I had to go back by the office and pick up your lucky picture.

Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Mr. Robert Axle.

Thank you very much. Good afternoon.

From the moment they are conceived, our greatest fear as parents is losing our child.

We do everything we can to keep them near us and keep them safe.

But sometimes they slip away.

It can happen in shopping malls, airports.

You know, the... the truth is it's not always the kids that get lost.

Sometimes it's us... the grown-ups, the parent.

And that's certainly true for me.

You see, I was convicted of gross negligence because of a product.

I mean, you all know that.

But what I'm really guilty of is gross negligence as a father.

And so here I am giving you another Robert Axle fabrication, which is the last thing I should be doing.

I mean, don't get me wrong.

Watchdawg is a good product.

It serves a purpose. I'm sure a lot of people will enjoy it.

But it's a Band-Aid.

It's not gonna solve the disconnect I have with my daughter or the disconnect that any of us have with our kids.

I mean, do we really need another toy to keep our kids distracted so that we can feel free to take our eye off the ball?

We have to learn to connect to our kids without the need for this or the thousands of other gadgets that we use to distract ourselves from being the best parent we can be.

'Cause this...

this isn't the answer for me anymore.


Sorry I missed your birthday. How was it?

Good.

But I'm not much of a birthday girl.

I see. I keep learning new things about Claire Elizabeth every day... not much of a birthday girl.

It's Claire Axle.

I'm kind of over the whole Claire Elizabeth thing.

I'm glad to hear that.

Axle!

You gotta get back there, man. Matt's going out of his mind.

Why? Does he want to sue me?

Sue you? He wants to back you.

Back me for what?

Ideas, inventions, consulting. He doesn't care.

The buyers are going crazy.

Well, you tell Matt I appreciate the gesture, but I've got to get a job... a real job.

You've got a real job, Dad.

You're a fabricator.

Okay, I'm in. But you tell him that at the moment I'm taking a walk with my daughter.

So you go back and work that room for me, partner, and I'll join up with you as soon as I can.

I'm on it.

No, you're going b...

Does that guy Troy have a girlfriend?

Are you serious or are you just trying to freak me out?

A little of both.