"Hey La, Hey La, My Ex-Boyfriend's Back"

Episode #2.16
Original Airdate 2/15/2000
Written by Jeff Greenstein
Directed by James Burrows
Transcript by Rob Durfee

Eric McCormack (Will Truman)
Debra Messing (Grace Adler)
Sean Hayes (Jack McFarland)
Megan Mullally (Karen Walker)

Chris Potter (Michael)
Christian Zimmerman (Andrew)

SCENE I: Grace's Apartment
(GRACE, WILL, and JACK are entering carrying grocery bags.)

GRACE: Augh! Will you let it go already?

JACK: I'm sorry, but your husband here put a shameless move on the produce guy when I had subtly signaled to him that he was to be my hothouse tomato.

WILL: Subtly? You put the vegetable hose between your legs and shpritzed me.

GRACE: Ok, guys, guys, guys, guys. I can end this right now. Although the produce man handles fruit, he does not sleep with it. He gave me his phone number.

JACK: He was fat.

WILL: Thing on his lip.


ANSWERING MACHINE: You have one message. [BEEP]

MAN'S VOICE [ON ANSWERING MACHINE]: Hey. Michael again. Listen, I've been thinkin', and I'm gonna give you one chance to reconsider. Come on, Grace, call me. I-- [GRACE RUNS TO THE MACHINE AND SHUTS IT OFF.]

JACK: Oh...my...g--

WILL: Why is my ex-boyfriend calling you?

JACK: Will, you stay out of this. [TO GRACE] Why is his ex-boyfriend calling you? The man who dumped him after 7 years and left him with nothing but a broken heart and a couple of love handles.

GRACE: Michael called the other day. He's back in Manhattan. He just moved into a new townhouse, and he asked me to decorate it.

JACK: How could you even think-- TO WILL] Will, try and stay calm. Breathe. Here, put your head between my knees.

WILL: Pass. Uh...

GRACE: Will, I said no. I thought it might be kinda weird for you.

JACK: Thought? Might? Kinda? How could you? Don't Will's feelings mean anything to you? [TO WILL] Look, at least I'm here for you, buddy. You can always count on me. Even-- [PAGER BEEPS] Oh, I gotta go. Toby found a car. [JACK EXITS]

GRACE: Look, I didn't tell you that he called because the last thing I wanted to do was to put you in an uncomfortable position--

WILL: Grace, Grace! You should do this. You were Michael's friend, too. You hung out together, you were Buddhists for a week together. I mean, you gave him mono in a manner I'm still not entirely clear on. It's fine.

GRACE: I don't buy it. You're a well-known liar.

WILL: You seem to have it in your head that this is a bigger deal for me than it is. It's been 2 years. I'm over him. Do it.

GRACE: You sure?

WILL: I'm sure. Anyway, I know you want the job. You're already doing it in your head.

GRACE: Am not.

WILL: Living room?

GRACE: Ethnic texture.

WILL: Bathroom?

GRACE: Plaid, fun, humor.

WILL: Bedroom?

GRACE: Plush, white, the forties.

WILL: But you haven't thought of it.

GRACE: Hasn't even crossed my mind.


SCENE II: Grace Adler Designs
(GRACE is working at her desk as KAREN enters.)

KAREN: Morning.

GRACE: Afternoon.

KAREN: Honey, I went out for drinks last night with the girls. It was just me, Paloma, Marlo, and Mr. Blackwell. They're all doing something. I mean, take Marlo. She's always working for charity. She's on the board of-- [BEAT] Oh, what the hell. She's thin and busy. It just made me think. I mean, I'm 32 years old... and what have I done with my life?

GRACE: Well, for one thing, misplaced the better part of a decade.

KAREN: So… I've come to a decision. I'm going to decorate Michael's place. I mean, he's gay, how hard could it be? Chrome, black leather, a shower for six. Done!

GRACE: Um, um, um, Karen, ok. Uh, you know what? I really think that you're just stretched too thin as it is. I mean, you have nails to file, Vogues to read, and those pills aren't gonna take themselves.

KAREN: Well, that's very sweet of you, honey, but I really think that--

GRACE: Karen, I'm sorry. No.

KAREN: Oh. I understand. And you're right, I-- I guess I really haven't earned this opportunity.


GRACE: Thank you. [BEAT] It's yesterday's. [BEAT] It's cold. BEAT] And there's Kahlua in it. But...thank you.

KAREN: I could... make a fresh pot.

GRACE: You don't know how.

KAREN: I could... fax something.

GRACE: You don't know how.

KAREN: I could--

GRACE: You don't know how.

KAREN: Honey, I love this blouse. [TOUCHING HER SLEEVE] This fabric is just yummy. [KAREN GAGS, COVERING HER MOUTH, GAGGING AND COUGHING] You know, you're a pretty lady. I don't tell that--

GRACE: Ok, ok, ok, ok, ok, ok! Ok, now you're creeping me out, ok? Ok, you can do a chair. One, one! One chair.

KAREN: [CLAPPING] Oh, thank you! Oh, you won't be sorry. Michael is gonna be so happy, that queen'll be sittin' on a throne.


SCENE III: Will's Apartment Building, Elevator
(JACK and WILL are in the elevator. JACK is fidgeting and pressing the elevator button.)

JACK: [PUSHING BUTTON] Come on...come on, come on, come on!

WILL: I don't understand why you didn't just go in the movie theater.

JACK: I can't pee in public bathrooms.

WILL: Why not? You do everything else in them.

JACK: [HOLDING UP HIS HANDS IN FRONT OF WILL'S FACE] Block. [PUSHING BUTTON] Come on... Come on, come on, come on.

WILL: You look like you're in pain.

JACK: I am.

WILL: So I probably shouldn't do this. [WILL SHAKES HIS WATER BOTTLE IN JACK'S EAR]


SCENE IV: Will's Apartment Building, Hallway
(GRACE and MICHAEL exit GRACE's apartment and head towards the elevator.)

MICHAEL: Oh, Grace, one thing. I want the powder room to be kinda butch.

GRACE: Well, let's start with not calling it the powder room. [MICHAEL IS LOOKING AT WILL'S DOOR] Michael.

MICHAEL: I used to live there.

GRACE: I used to live there, too.

MICHAEL: That's right. Was he a clean freak with you, too? Did he follow you around with a dust buster whenever you ate a muffin?

GRACE: You were allowed to eat in the apartment? He must have liked you more than a friend.


GRACE: Oh! Oh! Ok, all right, here. I'll be right back. I forgot my vitamin-e stick. I've been having such dry-lip issues, but we have all day to talk about that.



WILL: Michael.



WILL: [TO MICHAEL] Wow. How are you?

MICHAEL: Good. You?

WILL: Good.

MICHAEL: I--I haven't seen you-- When was that? Oh, it was the, uh--

WILL: Yeah, I know. I know, it's been--

MICHAEL: Yeah, it's been--



MICHAEL: Yes, gay-ja vu. [LAUGHS]

GRACE: Ha ha! [TO WILL] I--I thought that you and Jack were going to a movie.

WILL: Yeah, we did, but Jack had a large Sprite and… Well, I promised him a gold star if we had a dry week.

GRACE: [NERVOUS LAUGH] Oh...ok. Well, um, you know, we should really go. Because that way we won't...be here.

MICHAEL: Hey, Will.

WILL: Mmm?

MICHAEL: You look really good.


JACK: [EXITING FROM THE BATHROOM] Damn my tiny bladder! I can't believe I missed what happened out there. Tell me everything. Start from the beginning. How did he say I looked?

WILL: Like you'd put on a little ego. Can I just tell you, I could swear I just got a vibe from Michael. Like he... still feels something.

JACK: Really?

WILL: Well, I mean, come on. Yes, he's working with Grace, but do they have to meet two feet from the apartment we shared for 7 years? Do they have to go to the restaurant where we had our first date?

JACK: Did he really say nothing about me?

WILL: He told me... I looked good.

JACK: [SINGING] Your boyfriend's back, he's gonna save your reputation

WILL AND JACK: [BOTH SINGING] Hey la, hey la--

WILL: You know what I think? I think he realized he made a mistake.

JACK: So...how does it feel?

WILL: Good. It felt good.

JACK: Yeah, well... Don't tell me, tell him.

WILL: Really? Uh... I don't know. I don't know.

JACK: Look, look, oh... Uh! If what's holding you back is your attraction to me... I--I just want you to know it will [POINTING TO HIS LIPS] never happen. Ok? Let that... free you to pursue other, lesser men.

WILL: Oh, Jack. There are no lesser men than you.



SCENE V: Grace Adler Designs
(KAREN is working on her chair design. She has three different chairs)


KAREN: [ANSWERING PHONE] Karen Walker Designs. [BEAT] Oh! Hey, Grace. Yeah? Oh. Yeah, it's just been ringin' off the hook all mornin'. No, of course I haven't answered it, I'm too busy workin' on my chair. What? Huh? Oh! Yeah. Good point! Why did I pick it up now? Ha! She's crazy.


SCENE VI: Michael's Apartment Building



WILL: Hey. Can I...come in? Heh heh.

MICHAEL: Well, the place is a bit of a mess, still moving things in, but yeah--yeah, yeah, sure.

WILL: [ENTERING] Very nice.

MICHAEL: Thanks.

WILL: It looks huge. What do you need all this space for?

MICHAEL: Well, I'm thinking of getting a chimp. You know how they like to cycle around the place.

WILL: [LAUGHS] I've got my chimp on a NordicTrack. He gets in his little suit, hops on, watches the TV. He loves it. But... enough about Jack.

MICHAEL: [NERVOUS CHUCKLE] So, uh, why are you--

WILL: Well, I didn't get a chance to tell you when I saw you in the... hallway of awkwardness, but, uh... You look good, too.

MICHAEL: Thanks. Listen, I've been meaning to call you. It's been a while since we talked, and I--

WILL: Oh, wow. [WILL PICKS UP A CLOCK] Look, the first thing we ever bought together. Unless you count the matching "I-can't-even-think-straight" T-shirts.


WILL: And look at it, here it is, right in the middle of the room. Oh, the second hand is still broken.


WILL: [SMILING] Heh heh.

MICHAEL: Yeah, I've been meaning to get that fixed. Listen, you want to go for a walk?

WILL: Mickey, look-- [CLEARS THROAT] Let me say this first. Um... Heh. You're back in town, you're spending all this time with Grace, you're hanging around the old apartment, now the clock... I think we both know--

ANDREW: [ENTERING WITH A LARGE PAINTING] Look out! Ill-advised impulse purchase comin' through. Where do you want it?

MICHAEL: Bedroom.

ANDREW: All right.

WILL: New York movers for you. They move it, and they judge it. Heh.


WILL: Let me finish. It just seems like you may still have feelings for me, and I--I want you to know that-- that I also-- [TO ANDREW] Do you need to be here for this?

ANDREW: Uh, yeah. I do.

MICHAEL: Will, this is Andrew Kirkland. We live together.

WILL: Heh. Wow. First they move you in, then they stay. Heh heh.

MICHAEL: Will, he's my--

WILL: I--I know who he is, Michael. Andrew, nice to meet you.


WILL: I'm, uh, I'm gonna be... going... And, uh, I'm gonna take this with me. [WILL GRABS THE CLOCK AND QUICKLY EXITS.]


SCENE VII: Grace Adler Designs
(KAREN is working on her chairs. GRACE has just arrived.)

KAREN: Oh, Grace, thank God you're here. My head is spinning and not in a good way.

GRACE: Ok, ok, Karen, calm down, calm down. Uh...all right. Let's try a little experiment we did during my first year at the Fashion Institute.

KAREN: [SIGHS] Ok, one kiss and then back to work. [KAREN MOVES IN]

GRACE: No! [PUSHING HER BACK] A different experiment. Ok... Sit in this chair and pretend you're at home.

KAREN: Honey, I can't do that. My furniture's good.


KAREN: [SITTING DOWN] I'm in the library. Music's playing.

GRACE: Good. Now, you are unwinding after a nice dinner of cocktail onions and lime wedges.


GRACE: What are you doing?

KAREN: Probably yelling at the fat one. Heh heh.

GRACE: [SIGHS] Ok, yelling at "the fat one" ... Known to his future therapist as Mason. Go.

KAREN: Oh. Ok. "Hey, little Buddha, where are you goin' with those pies?!" [BEAT] Oh... That didn't feel quite right.

GRACE: Uh, try another one.

KAREN: Oh. Ok, ok. Hmm. "Mason, sweetie, would you like a glass of milk with that pie?" [KAREN JUMPS UP] What the hell?! [KICKS THE CHAIR]

GRACE: Ok, we're gonna keep this one for your desk. Ok, next.

KAREN: Oh. Ok. Heh. "Dump those pies, boy! You know the rule. When we can see your neck, you can have dessert. Rosario, hug the girl. The school said she needs affection. Oh, and, Stanley, for God's sake, get out of that tanning booth, you're starting to look like a cheese doodle!" [TO GRACE] Oh, this is a good one. Yeah. Oh, yeah.

GRACE: Does your jaw unhinge when you capture prey?

WILL: [ENTERING] How could you not tell me Michael has a boyfriend?

GRACE: Oh, my god. What happened? Did you guys talk?

WILL: Yeah. Yeah, at his apartment when I went over and humiliated myself by telling Michael I still had feelings for him.

GRACE: Wait. What? I thought you said that you were over him?

WILL: Well, excuse me for lying!

KAREN: Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey! This is a place of business! We are trying to get some work done in here, and we don't need you just barging-- Ok, I'm saying it, and I don't even buy it. Ha ha! Ok, creative urge filled, but my urge for a gin rickey is still alive and kickin'. Ok, I'm outta here. Keep on yellin'. There you go. [KAREN EXITS]

WILL: How could you not tell me something like that?

GRACE: I was trying to protect you.

WILL: Oh. Nice. Nice job of protection, Grace. If you were a condom, I'd be pregnant now.

GRACE: Look, I--I thought I was being a good friend. Believe me, the last thing I ever wanted was for you to get hurt. I just--

WILL: I--I was out of my mind over there. You know what? I took a clock. Who does that?

GRACE: The deco clock in the living room?

WILL: Yeah.

GRACE: Oh, thank god. It was hideous. It didn't go with anything I was doing in there.

WILL: Grace.

GRACE: Oh! Oh! Oh, right, right, right, right. Uh, your pain. How can I make it better?

WILL: I just need you to tell me everything. I-I-t's much easier than finding out from other people.

GRACE: Oh, god, I don't know. You're gonna get upset.

WILL: No, I won't.

GRACE: You promise?

WILL: I promise.

GRACE: Ok, what do you want to know?

WILL: When did they start going out?

GRACE: Oh, you're gonna get mad.

WILL: No, I won't. Tell me.

GRACE: January.

WILL: Oh. Ok. See? Perfectly calm.

GRACE: Of '97.

WILL: What?! Two months after we broke up?! Damn it, Grace, why don't you just stick a knife in my heart?!

GRACE: But you said--

WILL: Aw, don't listen to me! You know better than that.

GRACE: See? I was right! I knew you were gonna get mad.

WILL: God, I went over there, I was wearing the good jeans. I--I--I plucked my eyebrows so I wouldn't have that scary Peter Gallagher thing going on. I'm an idiot.

GRACE: No, sweetie--

WILL: No, don't-- I can't believe you did this to me.


SCENE VIII: Will's Apartment
(WILL is sitting in his chair moping.)

JACK: [OPENS THE DOOR AND PEEKS IN] Hey, little camper. How ya doin'?

WILL: Fantastic.


JACK: Look, Will, you need to find some way to put this behind you. People get over people. I've had to get over a lot of people. It's hard.

WILL: Jack, I had a 7-year relationship. You had a restraining order from the U.S. Gymnastic team.

JACK: Ok, suggestion. Get off your huffy bike and let me help you. You have to get past this Michael thing... And I think I have just the answer. [JACK OPENS WILL'S DOOR. THERE IS A SAILOR STANDING IN THE DOOR FRAME.]

WILL: [TO SAILOR] Hi. [TO JACK] Jack, why is there a sailor at my door?

JACK: Because...the sailor is your new boyfriend. [GASPS] You may now thank me.

Oh, there's a lot of things I'd like to do to you right now.

JACK: I just need a yes or a no.

WILL: Anchors aweigh.

JACK: [TO SAILOR] Vamos. [TO GRACE, WHO IS ENTERING WITH A "CAKE"] I think he's gonna be ok. [JACK EXITS]

GRACE: You want to hear something disturbing? That's the same guy Jack brought me when I broke up with Danny.

WILL: Perhaps you've forgotten, but I'm not talking to you.

GRACE: Ok, well, what did you expect Michael to do? Pine away in a dark room while listening to I can't Live If Living is Without You?

WILL: No...heh. There can be a lamp in the room.

GRACE: What is it?

WILL: I just--I-- I keep thinking I'm over this guy, and then it turns out I'm not, and I get pain. It's obviously the same pathology that keeps me going back to see Kevin Costner movies.

GRACE: Sweetie, you invested 7 years with Michael. Of course it's gonna take some time.

WILL: So, how come he finds somebody after two months? Am I that easy to get over?

GRACE: No. No, you're not.

WILL: Oh, how do you know? You wouldn't even--

GRACE: Will...I know.

WILL: Oh, that's right. You do know.

GRACE: Mm-hmm. Ok... It was at college... Ok, when you and I broke up, it was for different reasons. I wanted to raise the kids Jewish. You wanted to sleep with men.

WILL: I really do enjoy that.

GRACE: Mm-hmm. The point being... If I never got past that, we wouldn't have this. This--this totally inappropriate, boundaryless, highly dysfunctional relationship that I cherish, oh, so much.

WILL: Thanks, sweetie.

GRACE: I know that you're feeling badly right now, but, believe me, this too shall pass.

WILL: I guess. I just wish I could say the same about this cake.