Recap: "Pinky"

Focusing on a lost love from Randy's (Ethan Suplee) childhood, this week's episode goes for that delicate balance of comedy and heartfelt drama that My Name Is Earl fans have come to know and love, and it succeeds on every level.

At the Crab Shack, Earl (Jason Lee) and Darnell (Eddie Steeples) try to teach Randy how to blow bubbles with his gum one day, when Joy (Jaime Pressly) walks in while she's in the middle of disciplining Dodge. It seems the youngster has developed a crush on a neighbor girl which Joy is determined to thwart since she doesn't like the girl's mother. The discussion causes Randy to recall his first love. Back when he and Earl were young, they were sent, as punishment, to spend time at the lake with their Aunt Gail, a large woman with a tendency to employ them for some pretty gross chores (most involving manipulating her various folds of flesh by hand). However, Randy was saved from this torture by a young girl he called Pinky due to her pink hair and clothes. She called him Skipper, for his rock-skipping prowess. But after spending much time together and growing fond of each other, she stood him up at the bridge where she told him she'd kiss him for the first time. He never saw her again.

Earl begrudgingly agrees to help Randy locate the now-grown Pinky, since he says it will probably end badly. At the lake, they encounter the same proprietor who had been in charge all those years ago, who's now a rickety old man. After hours spent going through old records, he tracks down Pinky, calls her, and informs Randy that she'll meet him by the bridge at four o'clock. Sure enough, a woman dressed all in pink with pink hair is waiting. And when Randy calls her name, she turns around to reveal that she is . . . Joy!

After the initial shock wears off for both of them, the story of why they never kissed gets pieced together. Sick of doing chores on his own and jealous of Randy's good fortune, Earl simply can't take it when he finds out that Randy is going to get kissed by a girl before him. So he brings a note to Pinky/Joy that he tells her is from Skipper/Randy which says that he's found someone else and wants nothing to do with her. Of course, young kids do regrettable things, but Earl even tried to kiss Joy himself, which hilariously led to her screaming, "Pedophile! Pedophile!" and kicking him right where it hurts. Back in the present day, Randy is understandably furious with Earl. Earl tells him that the item never made his list because he was too ashamed to write it down. Now that it's on the list though, the only way he can cross it off is to get Joy to give Randy the kiss he missed out on.

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