Pop Goes the Question is the episode twenty of the ninth season in this television sitcom on Family Matters, that originally aired from CBS on July 3, 1998. It was directed by Joel Zwick and written both by David W. Duclon and Gary Menteer.
Carl tells a fellow police officer about Laura's engagement. Both Steve and Stefan propose to Laura. Her past adventures with both the nerd and the one-time "man of her dreams" are replayed through flashbacks (Steve in "Marriage 101," and Stefan in "We're Going to Disney World"). Laura is conflicted between the two, and when Steve feels Stefan is better, he plans to move to Russia to be with his parents, but Laura stops Urkel when she realizes she couldn't live without him, and tearfully accepts his marriage proposal, saying that she is sure that he is the one for her, a promise which the two seal with a kiss.
At the diner, Carl tells Willie the story about Steve and Stefan arming themselves with roses and rings. They decide to propose to an unsuspecting Laura immediately. Willie asks if Urkel did destroy the science lab at Vanderbuilt High School. Carl said no, because Steve was framed for the crime by a equally smart and bitter rival named Dexter Thornhill.
He tells about his story about how much he has disapproved of Laura dating Urkel since the Spanish restaurant they went to. Carl admits that Stefan is his choice because he wanted Steve to give up on Laura, return to Myra and marry her instead. However, Urkel and Stefan propose to her right away and Laura is confused by all of it. She struggles with her choice and no matter what happens, her decision will cost her one of the guys.
She goes to both Harriette and Carl for advice on who to choose. He tells her to marry Stefan because he doesn't think Steve is right for her. However, Harriette disagrees with his decision and tells her no matter what decision she make, they'll support her. Laura asks her if she was happy she made the right choice with her father. Harriette says yes because they have at least over 20 happy years of marriage and they still love each other since then. She kisses him and Laura smiles at them ready to make her decision. Willie rudely interrupts his story by admitting that he wished that his wife was more like Harriette. This is because she only loves him for having a piano in his possession, whereas Harriette loves him for him. Carl reminds him that this is his story and tells Willie that Urkel's decision to move to Russia took the decision away from Laura.
The next day, Steve has packed up all his stuff and announces that he won't continue proposing to Laura. She asks him why the sudden change of heart since she knows how much he loves her. Urkel tells her that he does love her, but he's made the decision to move out of the Winslow house and live with his parents in Russia. He reveals he won't tell his parents he's coming because it'll give them a chance to escape. Steve mentions that she'll be much happier being married to Stefan because she can go places with him, not worry about him being clumsy and live the glamourous life she always dreamed about. Whereas, if she marries Urkel, he could only provide her with an apartment, a test tube and feels she'd be much more miserable with him. Laura decides to tell him that she wants to marry him, not Stefan. She tells Steve that he has been a gentleman to her since they met and she deserves to be with him. Laura mentions she would be much happier being married to Urkel because he always treats her with respect and will always be there for her when times got rough with her. Whereas, if she married Stefan and he had given everything that she wanted in life. She will regret it instantly, because he would've reverted back to the original: arrogant and uncaring Stefan. He would've taken her for granted and their marriage would ended with divorce. Steve is happy with Laura's decision and they kiss, ending Carl's story.
Carl is not happy with her decision, but he also realizes that it was her decision to make. Before making a toast, he drops two pills into the water and toasts with Willie.
Cast and Characters Edit
- Reginald VelJohnson as Carl Winslow
- Judyann Elder as Harriette Winslow
- Darius McCrary as Eddie Winslow (non-appearance)
- Kellie Shanygne Williams as Laura Winslow
- Jaleel White as Steve Urkel / Stefan Urquelle
- Marlon Young as Willie Tannen
- Annie Gagen as Waitress
- Robert Leis Stephenson as Delivery Boy
- This episode marks the final onscreen appearance of Stefan Urquelle and Willie Tannen.
- This is also the only other episode when Steve calls Carl "Mr. Winslow" ("Laura's First Date" was the first episode). He does this when he asks Carl for his permission to propose to Laura.
- Steve mentions that he kept the ring he bought Laura for years. However in Marriage 101, Carl bought the ring from him just to make up for the way he took Harriette for granted. It has been speculated that Steve later bought back the ring from Carl when he [Carl] learns of his planned proposal.
- Stefan mentions the proposal scene in We're Going To Disney World, however it was originally Steve when he transformed into Stefan originally.
- The final episode of the series before going for 2-episode finale was Lost in Space.
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