Synopsis of Drawing the Lines

Written by Dana Hagerty

Who ever knew drinking cappuccino could be such a fulfilling experience? Ally and Georgia's foreplay with theirs was just as good, or better, than the infamous "I'll have what she's having" scene from "When Harry met Sally." (Okay, I'll admit, Mocha Frappuccino's do it for me.) If you missed this episode, there is no way I can do this scene justice, so be sure you catch it in re-runs, if only for this beginning scene.

In "Drawing the Lines," Elaine draws a line when she hires an attorney (Sandra Bernhard) to file a sexual harassment complaint against the firm. Billy draws a line when he decides to be honest with Ally. Ally draws a line by telling Billy to stop being honest. And both Georgia and Ally cross a line drawn for them.

We begin with Elaine telling Richard and Billy that almost every woman at the firm has signed a law complaint regarding the way they stare at the mail girl. It hasn't been filed yet, but Elaine says it will be if their demands aren't met. Their demands include $8,000 compensatory for every named plaintiff, three extra vacation days, and the mail girl gets discharged with prejudice.

Ally, Georgia, Billy, Richard and The Biscuit all meet with a possible new client, Marci Hatfield. She and her husband are divorcing, and while she says her husband told her he revoked the prenuptial she signed, her husband says she misunderstood. Mr. Hatfield is worth over $18 million -- the prenup limits Marci Hatfield to $600,000. She doesn't want to go to court, but she did quit work to raise their kids and feels she should get more, especially since they are divorcing because her husband cheated on her with his now-fiancee. She says her husband told her once that he had instructed his lawyer to revoke the prenup, but she never got it in writing. Mrs. Hatfield doesn't believe that Richard is very trustful, and he assures her that Ally and Georgia are.

After the meeting, Billy is in the unisex bathroom, gazing into the mirror. He imagines he and Ally are dancing together in formal wear, in the unisex bathroom. His daydream is interrupted when Ally comes into the bathroom. She is concerned about Billy staring into the mirror, but he insists he's fine. Ally steps into a stall, and asks Billy to turn on the faucet -- she has a bashful bladder. He turns on the water and leaves. Georgia comes into the bathroom, and Ally, thinking Billy is still in there, starts talking about how usually when Billy looked into the mirror like that it was something about her. She goes on to say that she figures it must be a problem with Georgia, and she wants him to know she is there for him. After finding Georgia in the bathroom, Ally rambles on about how she's there for Georgia, she's there for both of them, she's there for everybody, and she retreats back into the stall. (What is it with these two having embarrassing moments in the bathroom?)

Georgia tells Billy about the incident in the bathroom, and reminds him that she, too, knows that he stares at himself in the mirror when something's bothering him. He tells her it's probably this thing with Elaine.

This "thing with Elaine" doesn't look good for the guys when her attorney, Caroline Poop (Bernhard), shows up with security camera video of the guys staring at the mail girl as she works. Poop even stops The Biscuit from taking a moment, telling him she's been clued in to how he works. This, of course, leaves Cage troubled. But after drinks in the downstairs bar, Cage says he will talk to Elaine when she goes to the unisex.

Back in the unisex, Billy is looking into the mirror again when Ally comes in and asks him if he's getting a frown line. Billy gets upset, and Ally can't help but think his little fit reminds her of herself. Billy starts to leave, but instead comes back, looks under all the stalls, then tells Ally that he misses her. He says watching her and Georgia with their cappuccino's reminded him of making love to Ally. He says he and Georgia don't look into each other's eyes, like he and Ally did. He says he was blindsided by how much it hurts to miss it. Ally tells Billy that the right response escapes her, and Billy says he just wanted to tell her what was going on.

The next morning, Cage enters the unisex, goes into the stall next to the one Elaine is in, unzips his pants and sits down. Elaine says she knows that is John ("I see your shoes"), and she accuses him of coming in there to negotiate. He says he only came in to pee -- she asks why is he sitting down. Elaine adds she doesn't hear anything -- Cage begins to pee. Elaine then tells Cage that he drank extra coffee so he'd be ready because he knew she'd test him. Exiting the unisex, Cage tells Richard that Elaine is "wily."

Ally, Georgia and Mrs. Hatfield meet in the conference room with Mr. Hatfield and his lawyer. After Ally and Georgia threaten Mr. Hatfield with the possibility of his children hearing about his womanizing, he and his attorney leave, and Mrs. Hatfield gets upset with them for bringing up the children. She leaves, stating she doesn't want to do this anymore, but Richard tells Georgia to set up another meeting for the next day.

Elaine stops Richard to tell him that the women who signed the complaint will walk out the next day at noon unless their demands are met. Ally calls Elaine into her office and tells her that her quest is selfish -- that there is something a little desperate about her, and she thinks that's what the lawsuit is about. Elaine just thinks that Cage told Ally to say that.

Billy comes to apologize to Ally, and she tells him that if they are going to be friends, they will have to draw some lines and not be so honest with each other. Billy agrees.

The next morning, Richard presents Ally and Georgia with photos of Mr. Hatfield and his alleged mistress. Seems his fiancee is in London, but the photos were taken the night before by someone Richard hired. Ally and Georgia says they won't cross that line. But they do, and they get somewhere between $2 and $3.5 million for their client.

The next line to be drawn comes from Richard. He calls Elaine's bluff, and tears up the complaint, telling the entire office that if they aren't happy, they can leave. No one does. Not even Elaine.

That evening, while the group celebrates in the downstairs bar, Ally goes back up to get her stuff and tell Billy that his wife is waiting for him. She also tells him that their friendship is the greatest thing she has going, and since honesty is important in a friendship, they shouldn't put boundaries on that. They decide to "freefall with the truth, and hope we both survive." But that night, after Ally has showered (her case left her feeling dirty), she stares into her mirror and dreams of dancing with Billy, in formal wear, in the unisex.

©1997 Dana Hagerty. All rights reserved.

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