The Substitute Son is episode fourteen of the sixth season in this television sitcom on Family Matters, that originally aired from ABC on February 3, 1995. It was directed by Richard Correll and written by Reginald VelJohnson, Fred Fox Jr. and Jim Geoghan.
Eddie has no time to spend with Carl, so Waldo decides to spend time with him instead. Once Eddie begins to miss out on some of the activities, he starts gets the hint (after Harriette and Mother Winslow called him out for it). Meanwhile, Urkel is beat up by a bunch of ruffians and gets his revenge as Bruce Lee Urkel!
Carl plans to go bowling with Eddie for that night. However, Eddie has made plans of his own. He explains to Carl that he wants to go out on his date with a lovely girl he met in his college's library named Charmaine and stands him up. Waldo shows up to the home and decides to spend time with Carl going bowling. Overtime, he and Carl grow closer together, while Eddie continues choosing his social life.
Meanwhile, Steve decides to make another alter ego who can defend Laura from the gang of ruffians who harassed her at the longshoreman's bar. After realizing that he couldn't do anything to stop those guys from beating him up, he thinks that his new alter ego has a better chance to stop them and make them apologize to her. Laura tries to tell him go as Stefan, but Steve refuses. He reveals that he didn't design Stefan for fighting and thus would not have a good shot defending her. The next day with a celebrity hair sample of Bruce Lee, Steve gets into the transformation chamber and becomes Bruce Lee Urkel, a martial aritist capable of stopping the thugs.
Eddie comes over for a visit as Carl and Waldo prepare to leave for the Chicago Bulls game. When he tries to remind Carl that they always go to the games together, he points out that Waldo called him back and accepted the invitation. He lightly mentions that Eddie is too busy with his own social life to worry about him and figures he already has plans. Carl and Waldo leave for the Bulls game. During that time, an irate and a jealous Eddie feels left out of the fun and takes his anger out on his sack of dirty laundry. When Harriette and Mother Winslow points out the wrong way to do laundry, he snaps and blames Waldo for interfering with his plans with his father by not telling him about the Chicago Bulls home game. Harriette is unsympathetic and sets her lame-brained son straight. She reminded him that Carl left a few messages on his answering machine and that only Waldo answered it. Harriette admits her disappointment with Eddie for standing him up for bowling two weeks ago because he wanted to go out on his date with Charmaine. Eddie still thinks it was unfair that his father is spending more time with Waldo more than him and planned to call Carl back. However, Harriette disagrees and tells him off that he stood his father up a second time at the car show last Saturday. She revealed that Carl left Eddie a message on his answering machine in the apartment and waited for him at the box office for hour. When he came home depressed and told Harriette about it, she took matters in her own hands and called the apartment for answers in why Eddie never showed up. When Waldo answered the phone, she was upset to learn that he was out another date with a different girl and never bothered to call Carl to apologize. Eddie starts feeling remorseful for standing his father up all those times, but Harriette isn't done. She believes that Eddie got what he deserved in being left out by Carl for father and son time because he kept putting more of his priorities in going out with his dates and stop taking him for granted. Harriette also thinks that unlike Eddie, Waldo at least made time for Carl and wishes that he was more like his friend. It was Mother Winslow's sympathetic words, that ended up hitting home to Eddie. Especially when she reveals the story about Carl and his father, Sam, having plans to spend a lot of time together as much as they can. Unfortunately, he never had the chance to spend time with him because he died, when he was a teenager. Eddie realizes the real reason why Carl wanted to spend time with him, because he wanted to make sure they had the time to enjoy each other's company and that every minute counted. She wants him to try to make that effort and he agrees to do so.
At the longshoreman's bar, Laura tries to talk Steve (as Bruce Lee Urkel) out of doing this, but his mind was already made up. He tells her that since they harassed her, he will give them a chance to apologize for calling her a bimbo. Laura asks what happens if they refuse to apologize and Steve tells her it won't be a pretty sight. They head inside and Bruce Lee Urkel tells them to apologize for calling her a bimbo. The leader, Jack, does and later calls her a tramp, which caused his gang to laugh. Laura tells him off to leave his mother out of it. Jack admits that he likes his women strong that he allows her to stay, but her bodyguard has to leave. He pushes Bruce Lee Urkel and he tells Jack that he made a big mistake. He breaks his cue stick and it ensures an all out fight between him and the gang. When it was all over, Jack and his gang runs away and Bruce Lee Urkel emerges as the victor. Then, he says no one messes with Laura Winslow.
At the house, Eddie is in the kitchen, ironing his clothes that he brought to wash and dry. He had to keep himself busy after being set straight by both Harriette and Mother Winslow. When Carl come home from the basketball game, Eddie apologizes for taking him standing him up for bowling because of his date. He admitted that all the time Carl has never stood him up and wanted to spend time with him. Eddie also admitted that he didn't want to do the same because he cared more about his social life and wanted to go out on his dates. Plus, after seeing him spend time with Waldo, he was jealous and angry about it. It took both Harriette and Mother Winslow's setting Eddie straight for him to realize what's more important. From now on, he is keeping his focus in spending with his father more than letting a pretty girl get in the way. Carl mentions how happy he is with Eddie for promising never to take him for granted and sets up a date for fishing.
During the end credits, Steve is finally done with Bruce Lee Urkel, much to Laura's relief. That is until, he hits his hand on the board, which doesn't break and reverts to Bruce Lee Urkel to say "Boards do hit back."
Cast and Characters Edit
- Reginald VelJohnson as Carl Winslow
- Jo Marie Payton-Noble as Harriette Winslow
- Rosetta LeNoire as Estelle Winslow
- Darius McCrary as Eddie Winslow
- Kellie Shanygne Williams as Laura Winslow
- Bryton McClure as Richie Crawford
- Jaleel White as Steve Urkel / Bruce Lee Urkel
- Shawn Harrison as Waldo Geraldo Faldo
- Carl Ciarfalio as Arm Wrestler
- David Lea as Jack
- James Lew
- Robert Wall as Himself
- The first appearance of Bruce Lee Urkel in this episode.