"A New Lease on Life"

Episode #1.2
Original Airdate 9/28/98
Written by David Kohan & Max Mutchnick
Directed by James Burrows
Transcript by Rob Durfee

CAST
Eric McCormack (Will Truman)
Debra Messing (Grace Adler)
Sean Hayes (Jack McFarland)
Megan Mullally (Karen Walker)
Gary Grubbs (Harlin Polk)


SCENE I: Grace's Office
(WILL and GRACE are arriving.)

GRACE: ...Then Regis looked right into the camera and said, "Just give her the damn Emmy already."

WILL: No. "La Lucci." He didn't say "her." "Give La Lucci the damn Emmy."

GRACE: Right, right. La Lucci. Do it. Do Regis.

WILL: [IMITATING REGIS] Give La Lucci the damn Emmy already!

GRACE: Now do Regis finding out he has a week to live.

WILL: Grace, no. Bad taste. And I need some time to work on that one. So, you seeing apartments today?

GRACE: Do Regis after he's had too much melon.

WILL: Stalling.

GRACE: Not stalling.

WILL: Grace, you haven't even been looking at apartments.

GRACE: So not true. Look, there's one now. [POINTING OUT THE WINDOW] There's one, and there's one.

WILL: Danny gets back to town in a week. You need to move out of his apartment and away from Ex-Boyfriend Land.

GRACE: Oh, I hate Ex-Boyfriend Land.

WILL: So start fresh. When Michael left me, I completely changed the whole apartment.

GRACE: Will, your apartment is exactly the same.

WILL: The point is, you need a new place.

GRACE: Yeah. Well, easy for you to say, Mr. Rent Control. Mr. View of the Park. Mr. Perfect Apartment. Oh, my god. Why don't I move in with you?

WILL: Wow.

GRACE: Huh?

WILL: Uh, Can't. I promised Jack he could stay with me.

GRACE: Just 'til his floors are done. Excuse me, how great is this? I love you, you love me, and I love the fact I won't have to pretend I'm looking for apartments.

WILL: Ok, let me think about this. No! I love you, but no, no. Grace, we need to have our own apartments.

GRACE: Why?

WILL: Because...we're grownups. Well, aren't we?

GRACE: What just happened? We were having fun, we were playing Regis, and suddenly, I'm supposed to grow up, get my own place and pay bills? I hate you.

WILL: No, you don't. Look, I have got to get to work, and you have got to start looking for a new apartment.

GRACE: Go. Go, you big grownup.

WILL: [IMITATING REGIS] What do you mean I only have a week to live? What am I gonna tell Gelman? Nah.

 

SCENE II: Will's Apartment
(JACK is in the kitchen wearing an apron, cooking and singing.)

JACK: [SINGING] Oh, it all began with just one little dance. But soon it ended up a big romance. Blame it on the Bossa Nova, the dance of love.

[WILL ENTERS]

JACK: Hey. [BRINGING WILL THE BOWL OF FOOD] I made it myself. It's a dry snack mix. I call it "Garlic Jazz." I think you might like it, but if you don't... [SINGING] Blame it on the Bossa Nova, the dance--

WILL: Knock it off. Don't make me laugh. You're buggin' me.

JACK: Ok, how am I bugging you?

[JACK SITS DOWN ON THE COUCH, SPILLING "GARLIC JAZZ" ALL OVER.]

WILL: How about projectile "garlic jazz" all over my $4,000 sofa?

JACK: Each time you describe the sofa, you add another thousand.

[JACK'S PARROT GUAPO "RAWKS."]

WILL: And must you always let that bird out of its cage?

JACK: Hey, birds gotta fly, fish gotta swim. Will's gotta lighten up.

WILL: Sorry, Jack. I didn't get much sleep. You were on the phone 'til 4 a.m. I could hear you gushing three rooms away.

JACK: For your information, I was having a heart-to-heart call with someone who actually cares about me.

WILL: Jack, nobody actually cares about you at Dial-a-Dude.

JACK: I don't know what you're talking about.

WILL: It's $2.99 a minute.

JACK: And so not worth it.

WILL: Jack McFarland, you are a frustrating roommate. You make expensive phone calls, but you don't pay the bills. You eat a lot, but you never cook. You put on a maid's uniform, but you never clean the house.

JACK: Ok, what is this, huh? What's with the vertical eyebrows? You and Grace get in a fight?

WILL: No, we did not get in a fight. She wants to move in, and I said no, and I might have been a little insensitive.

JACK: Do I have garlic jazz breath?

WILL: [SIGHS] That's right. I forgot. It's always about you.

JACK: Why are you so angry? Why don't you tell me what this is really about? Oh...my god. You're in love with me, aren't you?

WILL: Do you smell toast? Because I think you're having a stroke.

 

SCENE III: Grace's Office
(GRACE is on the phone; KAREN is sorting the clothes she recently purchased.)

GRACE: [ON THE PHONE] Look, all I'm saying is you're a realtor. Let's get a little real. I mean, who can afford-- No, no, no, no. No, don't hang up. Please, I'm sorry. I'll have my assistant here fax over the application. [HANGING UP THE PHONE] Ohh. That's gonna cost me a muffin basket.

KAREN: [SORTING BLOUSES] Oh, my god. I already have this. Well, so now I have two.

GRACE: I could live with my sister for a few months. I could also shove bamboo under my fingernails.

KAREN: [HOLDING UP A MINI-SKIRT] Ok, now, this is something "I got it, so I'll have it. Maybe I'll wear it, maybe I won't." But, uh...maybe I will. Heh heh heh. Whoo!

GRACE: Last month, I had a fiancé and a 2-bedroom apartment. Next month, single and homeless. Right on track! [THUMBS UP]

KAREN: [HOLDING UP A BLOUSE] Ok. Now this is just fun. It's beach, cocktails with the Pearlmans. Kicky little blouse. Cheeriness. Dick's gotta stop drinking.

GRACE: Karen, do you also hold up sandwiches in front of starving children?

KAREN: Oh, honey, I'm sorry. I'm being insensitive. I should really-- Do you want a blouse?

GRACE: No, thank you. I want an apartment. Can you please fax this application over to the realtor?

KAREN: Oh, honey. Machinery. No. [BEAT] Honey, now, why do you have to be the one to move out in the first place?

GRACE: Oh, it's the breakup rule. Whoever cancels the marriage is forced to wander the streets of New York without a place to plug in her hot rollers.

KAREN: Well, honey, you know that Danny would take you back in a heartbeat.

GRACE: Karen, I'm not gonna marry someone just because I want a nice apartment.

KAREN: Um...yes. That--That would be wrong.

GRACE: It would be settling. I want to marry "the one."

KAREN: And well you should, honey. How else are you gonna get to the two and the three?

 

SCENE IV: Will's Office
(WILL and GRACE are eating lunch, while reading the apartment ads.)

WILL: $2,900 for a loft in Noho. $2,300 for a loft in Soho.

GRACE: It's too much to pay for any... 'ho.

WILL: Ok, here: "Charming one bedroom, Chelsea adjacent, well-maintained, $1,500." Sounds great.

GRACE: Ok, let me decode: "Charming"? Tiny. "Chelsea adjacent"? New Jersey. "Well-maintained"? Super washes blood off sidewalk daily.

WILL: Grace, you're not helping. This is for you.

GRACE: Ok. Fine. Fine. Let me see. Ok. Oh, my god. Oh, my god. Here it is. Perfect. [READING PAPER] "Upper West Side. Spacious 2-bedroom, 2-bath, fireplace--"

WILL: This is great.

GRACE: "Hardwood floors, terrace, beautifully decorated by talented woman who hates looking for apartments, gay best friend included." Aha!

WILL: Grace, you can't move in with me.

GRACE: Why not?

WILL: Because... You know it's a bad idea.

GRACE: I hate when people say I know that. How would I know that?

WILL: All right, let's go over the reasons why you shouldn't. Ok? Reason number one: You just got out of a relationship, and you need to wipe the slate clean.

GRACE: Ok. Reason number one why I should: I would never let you walk out of the house with mustard on your face. Come here. [LICKS HER THUMB...]

WILL: No, no! Yecchh!

GRACE: Reason number 2: The dry cleaner in your neighborhood calls me "nice lady."

WILL: He calls me "nice lady." You need to build your own nest. I mean, living with me, I'd just become a crutch for you.

GRACE: So be my crutch.

WILL: Ohh, you are so Markie Post in every single Lifetime movie.

GRACE: Eww.

WILL: Grace! This is right. You'll see, it's gonna be great for you.

GRACE: How?! I'll be in a crappy apartment somewhere alone, sitting around reading a human interest story about...I don't know, a kitty with no hind legs, who pulls herself around on a cart. Then I'll be sad because I'm alone and kind of wounded, and I'll identify with the kitty. I am that kitty.

WILL: You are not that kitty! Trust me. You're a...you're a big ol' calico.

GRACE: Really?

WILL: Yeah.

GRACE: Yeah. I can do this.

WILL: You can do this.

GRACE: I should do this.

WILL: Mm-hmm.

GRACE: In fact, this could be the best thing I've ever done for myself.

WILL: Look at you! Gettin' on, gettin' past. [LOOKING AT HIS HOT DOG] Gettin' a little sick. What's in this thing?

GRACE: Will? I'm scared.

WILL: Of course you're scared. You're supposed to be scared. I'm scared.

GRACE: You are?

WILL: Yeah...Just ate a hot dog from a vendor with 3 teeth. I'm terrified.

 

SCENE V: Will's Office
(Later. WILL is having a meeting with a client, HARLIN.)

WILL: [POINTING TO A CONTRACT] Sign here. Initial here. Put the pen here. Shake my hand here. As your attorney, it gives me great pleasure to inform you that you are now the largest manufacturer of buffalo feed in the entire southwest.

HARLIN: Say it again!

WILL: You are now the largest manufacturer of buffalo feed in the entire southwest.

HARLIN: It just sounds sexy, doesn't it?

WILL: I'm hot.

HARLIN: Yeah. Come on, let's go celebrate.

WILL: Oh, Harlin, could I take a rain check? I am so tired.

HARLIN: Figuring out all those billable hours really wiped you out, did it?

WILL: No. It's this guy who's living with me.

HARLIN: Look, Will, uh... I know it's none of my business, but... when my wife and I are having a problem, I light some candles, get out some nice aromatic oil, then rub it up-- [BEAT] It's just none of my business.

WILL: No, it's just a friend who's staying with me temporarily. He keeps odd hours, he's got the energy of a ferret. He's messy, and he's got this enormous bird.

HARLIN: Uh, by bird, you mean...?

WILL: Bird.

HARLIN: Just checkin'.

 

SCENE VI: Will's Office
(Later. WILL is working.)

ELLEN, WILL'S SECRETARY: [OVER INTERCOM] Will, it's Grace on line 2.

WILL: Hey!

GRACE: [OVER SPEAKER PHONE] I found it. It's great. Come over now. Where is it? It's in Brooklyn Heights. Get off at the Borough Hall stop. I'll meet you there.

WILL: Wait, this connection must be bad. I could've sworn I heard you say Brooklyn.

 

SCENE VII: Grace's New Apartment
(The Apartment is empty. GRACE shows WILL around.)

GRACE: So what do you think?

WILL: I think we're in Brooklyn.

GRACE: You hate it.

WILL: No. No, I don't. Who knew there were such nice apartments in Brooklyn? I thought the only thing in Brooklyn were the Dodgers and about 300,000 guys named Guido.

GRACE: Will, the Dodgers left Brooklyn in 1958.

WILL: Sweetie, you know I don't follow the volleyball. [LOOKING OUT THE WINDOW] Look at that tree!

GRACE: They really do grow in Brooklyn.

WILL: Grace... You have a new apartment!

GRACE: I know! Ha ha!

WILL: We need to do something.

GRACE: We need to play the game.

WILL: Yes! What game?

GRACE: The guess-where-all-my-stuff's-gonna-go game.

WILL: Wha--.

GRACE: I just made it up.

WILL: Ohh. Excellent game.

GRACE: Ready?

WILL: Yeah.

GRACE: I'm up against a wall with a southern exposure that gets all the light during the day. What am I?

WILL: You're the ficus.

GRACE: Yes. Good. Moving on. [SITTING ON THE MANTLE] I'm above the fireplace. What am I?

WILL: You're the ugly piece of string art you got in Santa Fe. Grace, if you're not even gonna challenge me, I can leave right now.

GRACE: Ok. Ok.

WILL: Captain's chair. Come on, Grace!

GRACE: Ok. Ok. I got one. [STANDS AGAINST THE WALL, MAKING SPITTING NOISES] Kkcch-puuh! Kkcch-puuh! Kkcch-puuh! What am I?

WILL: I don't know what that is, but I am really embarrassed for you right now.

GRACE: I'm the humidifier!

WILL: Oh, gosh.

GRACE: One! Yes! Comin' back! Ok...

WILL: [PICKING UP PAPERS FROM THE MANTLE] The lease.

GRACE: Haven't done anything yet.

WILL: No, it's a 2-year lease. And you've signed it.

GRACE: Ok! I am old, and I once lived in Aunt Reba's house, and I'm not Uncle Joe.

WILL: You know, sweetie, I gotta go. I left Harlin back at the office, and I gotta get back. I'm sorry. [KISSING] Mwah!

GRACE: Oh. Ok. Call me.

WILL: I Will. I'm really happy for you. [WILL EXITS.]

GRACE: I'm a coffee table.

 

SCENE VIII: Will's Apartment

(WILL enters the house and turns on the TV.)

TV: Tonight, Conan's guests include comedian Sandra Bernhard, 12-year-old pig caller Jody Marchenko, and Regis Philbin.

(WILL sits down. JACK's parrot, GUAPO, climbs up on the couch behind him. WILL turns around, sees GUAPO and sighs.)

 

SCENE IX: Will's Apartment
(The next morning. JACK is cooking breakfast as WILL enters from his bedroom.)

WILL: Jack, I'm sorry, but--

JACK: Morning, roomie. Last night, you missed it. They had grizzly bear attacks on the Discovery Channel. It was good, but, uh... I wanted better.

WILL: What did you break?

JACK: Will, can't a fella just make another fella a little meal?

WILL: You broke another wineglass, didn't you?

JACK: Welcome to Cynical Island, population you. I just think it's a little sad, Will, that you can't accept a simple act of kindness without turning it into something ugly and bitter. [BEAT] Ok. Guapo pooped on one of your suits. There. Let the bile flow.

WILL: Jack... It's all right.

JACK: Excuse me?

WILL: It's a suit. I can get it dry-cleaned.

JACK: Well, that--that's true.

WILL: Since I'm going, do you need anything cleaned? On me.

JACK: Where's Guapo?! What did you do with him?! [CALLING GUAPO] Pretty bird! [WHISTLING]

WILL: Jack, Guapo is fine. What? Can't a fella dry-clean another fella's-- I want you out. I'm asking Grace to move in.

[JACK KNOCKS A WINE GLASS INTO THE SINK AND IT SHATTERS.]

JACK: Oops. I did break another wineglass.

WILL: Jack, come on. You're leaving in a week anyway. She belongs here. I thought if she had her own place, it would be good for her, but it's...it's not good for me. She's so much a part of my everyday life. I can't have her all the way over in Brooklyn.

JACK: So you think you and Grace moving in together is the best thing to do for the both of you?

WILL: Yeah. I'm sure of it.

JACK: And I'm out? No, no, that's very interesting. Now I know how your suit feels.

WILL: Oh, Jack! Come on! It's not that big a deal. You can stay at your mother's.

JACK: [HORRIFIED GASP] What is that, some type of sick joke?!

WILL: All right. Then maybe you can stay--

JACK: No, No, you know what? I can take care of myself, thank you very much. Don't worry about me. I'm a survivor. [EXITS TO HIS BEDROOM.]

WILL: So you'll be at your mother's?

JACK: [OFF-SCREEN] Yeah.

 

SCENE X: Grace's Office
(KAREN is at her desk as JACK rushes in, carrying a tassle.)

JACK: [ENTERING] Grace! Grace! Where are you? You're making a huge mistake. [JACK NOTICES KAREN] Are you Karen?

KAREN: Yes, honey.

JACK: Well, Peter, Paul and Mary, you are fabulous!

KAREN: Well, thank you. Who are you?

JACK: I'm Jack.

KAREN: Jack...? Ohh, Will's Jack? Well, hello, honey. We've talked on the phone a million times. I can't believe we've never met.

JACK: Look at you, you little hottie. Stand up!

KAREN: Ohh! No! Come on! [STANDS UP, BENDING OVER TO PICK UP HER PURSE, WITH HER BUTT IN THE AIR]

JACK: Look at you. You are a rocketship!

KAREN: Ohh, get outta here, you strange person. [REMOVES SWEATER TO SHOW OFF HER TIGHT TOP] This is-- [BEAT] What is this?

JACK: P.S., loving the boobs! Perky, with all kinds of attitude. Store-bought?

KAREN: Uh-uh.

JACK: Right on! God, I had no idea you would be so...kitten with a whip! Come on, let's touch stomachs! [JACK PULLS UP HIS SHIRT.]

KAREN: Oh, my lord, you are a complete freak! [KAREN LIFTS UP HER SHIRT AND HER AND JACK TOUCH STOMACHS.] So, honey, what are you doing here? Why are you here? Hmm? What's going on? What's happening? [POINTING TO THE TASSLE] What's that?

JACK: Well, I borrowed this tassle from Grace, like, two months ago, and I never returned it.

KAREN: You borrowed one tassle? For what?

JACK: Let's just say a lamp.

KAREN: Ok. Come on, honey, stick around, talk to me. I have nothing to do today. Grace is taking the day off to move.

JACK: Not where you think. Shoes?

KAREN: Chanel.

JACK: Fabulous.

KAREN: I know. Honey, what are you telling me?

JACK: Will is asking her to move in with him.

KAREN: [BOTH GASPING] Ohh, honey, no, no! She can't move into his place! That's not acceptable!

JACK: Tell me about it, you feisty little shih-tzu.

KAREN: Oh, honey, how's she ever gonna get married if she's playing house with a gay guy? No offense. [OFF JACK'S LOOK] Just guessing.

 

SCENE XI: Grace's Apartment
(GRACE is decorating her apartment as WILL enters.)

WILL: Hey.

GRACE: Hi! How did you get up without buzzing?

WILL: Ah, for 3 bucks you can get into any building on this block. Actually, this one only cost 2.

GRACE: See? I'm a bargain. So... What do you think?

WILL: It's great. I met one of your neighbors on the way in. I'm sure he's a lot less threatening with his pants on.

GRACE: Ok, got it, Will. Brooklyn bad. Manhattan good. Look. [POINTING TO A VASE ON THE MANTLE] Is this perfect here or what?

WILL: It's perfect. It's also mine.

GRACE: Oh, my gosh, it is? It is!

WILL: Keep it, keep it.

GRACE: Really? Thanks. Oh, I'm glad you're here. Tell me where this mirror should go. How about here? [HOLDING UP MIRROR ON WALL]

WILL: Over. [GRACE MOVES MIRROR ACCORDING TO WILL'S DIRECTIONS] Over.

GRACE: Hello. Arms!

WILL: Further. Come on. Yit-dit-dit-dit-dit.

GRACE: Will, I'm going out the door.

WILL: Trust me. Take it into the hallway. Now get in the elevator and go downstairs and get in the cab that's gonna take you back to my apartment 'cause I want you to move in with me.

GRACE: [HOLDING THE MIRROR IN FRONT OF WILLíS FACE] Look at you. Look at what you're doing. This is the face of a man who's driving me crazy.

WILL: Why? I thought you'd be happy. I'm talking to my-- Can we put this down, please? [MOVING THE MIRROR] We're born roommates! What's the problem?

GRACE: What's the problem? The problem is it's too late. I can't believe this! What happened?! What happened to the whole you being a crutch thing?

WILL: Some people might call it a crutch, but what's a crutch? It's support! Support from someone who loves you, someone who--who has a terrace, which you don't, out here in--in Murderville.

GRACE: I can't believe you're doing this. Why are you doing this?

WILL: You're too far away.

GRACE: Listen to me. I packed boxes, I overpaid movers, my mother's been here and hates it. I'm staying.

WILL: Grace, you just left the man you were gonna marry. I just got out of a 7-year relationship. Why should we go through that alone? At the end of the day, I like to be with my best friend.

GRACE: So would I, but...I'm here.

WILL: I can't talk you out of this? I'm a lawyer, I'm very good at this sort of thing.

GRACE: I know. You talked me into it.

WILL: I...I should sue myself.

GRACE: Will, I've gotta do this. I have to have done this. Be happy for me. It's good that I have my own place, even if it is in Brooklyn. [BROOKLYN ACCENT] Ya know what I'm tawkin' about, ya big mook, with yer 90-mile-an-hour hair?

 

SCENE XII: Grace's Apartment
(Later. GRACE sits in her chair sipping wine.)

GRACE: Ok, I've done this.

 

SCENE XIII: Will's Apartment

(WILL is eating ice cream as GRACE enters carrying her luggage. She smiles and carries her luggage into her new bedroom.)

GRACE: [OFF-SCREEN] Good night, Will.

WILL: Good night, Gracie.