The show opens with Elaine planning a surprise birthday party for Ally. Seems everyone is in on the secret, and Ally walks into her office to find the gang there with a birthday cake for her. They attempt to sing to her, but she stops them. Next a police officer (or so it seems) walks in and says he has a summons for Ally. Elaine starts the music, and the "officer" starts stripping. Ally looks kind of disgusted and walks out of the room.
The next morning Ally and Renee are in the apartment talking about Ally's 28th birthday. Renee gets a phone call and we learn that Ally will be going up against Renee in the Mark Henderson case. Ally will be defending Mark Henderson, who was charged with breaking and entering and also misdemeanor battery. He allegedly broke into Cheryl Bonner's house and tickled her feet. We learn that Mark has a foot fetish.
Ally arrives at the office and both Billy and Georgia try to give subtle hints to Ally that she still has a curler in her hair. We see her turn bright red, but she tells them it's a fashion thing.
Next in the courtroom, Renee is questioning Cheryl Bonner (plaintiff) about the night in question. Seems that she awoke during the night and someone was tickling her foot. She screamed and then called 911. Next, Ally is questioning Cheryl and it is revealed that Cheryl knows the person in question, she has even dated him a few times. Ally says there wasn't any actual break- in, as Cheryl had left her door open.
Back in the office, Elaine is sporting a blue curler in HER hair, she must have believed Ally's "fashion thing" remark. She is talking to Greg Budders, as he is there about his release papers from his car accident case. She mentions the party, and suggests that he sing a song for Ally. She said Ally is depressed about her birthday, and the fact that he's not sleeping with her doesn't help. He looks really surprised at that remark. She says to show up later for the "jam session" she's having.
Back to the courtroom Ally is questioning her client, Mark Henderson. He is explaining in detail about that night, from walking in there, to the actual tickling of Cheryl's foot. The whole courtroom is mesmerized by his words. He uses one of John's words- disparaged-and John's eyebrows raise up. He explains that if she left the door unlocked, it must have been for a reason.
We see Ally and Greg walking, and learn from their conversation that he is walking her home from their date. Sounds like they had a good time, and Ally invites Greg upstairs. He declines her offer, and asks for a raincheck. She's thinking "is this guy gay or what? and he kisses her, and she thinks "definitely not". Ally goes upstairs alone, and Renee asks how her date went and Ally snaps at her and takes her inflatable man into her bedroom and slams the door.
The next morning Ally talks to John and Richard about Mark Henderson, she thinks arguing insanity is the only way she could win the case. Next Greg walks in and he asks her about being mad about the previous night. She snaps at him, and then says she's going to court.
Ally is in the unisex talking with Georgia about her birthday. Ally says by age 28, she wanted to be married, and on maternity leave, but still on the partnership track. She says instead she's sleeping with an inflatable doll, and defending clients who suck people's toes. Mark Henderson has dropped by Ally's office to tell her that he really does love Cheryl and wants to know if that matters or not. Ally says "legally, no". He just wants to win Cheryl back.
Next Ally is at the bar with her co-workers and she mentions that she has invited both Mark and Cheryl to the bar in hopes of getting the case worked out. The spotlight shines on Ally's face, and Vonda says "Ally McBeal, this one's for you." Richard says for Ally to listen close, possible theme song here. Vonda starts singing "I'm a Woman", and then Elaine and Renee join in. They really heat up the stage, both are really great singers.. Cheryl arrives and Ally senses she is really upset, and they go upstairs to Ally's office. Ally wants Cheryl to drop the charges, saying that Mark " didn't harm you at all," but Cheryl is upset because she thought Mark was the guy for her. Mark walks in, explains his side of things, and tells Cheryl he's sorry.
Ally has gone back down to the bar, and is wondering where Greg is. Well mystery solved, he's up on stage singing "Love Me" . He is a really great singer, and Ally looks surprised and impressed that he's singing to her. Well Renee has noticed him too, and gets on the stage and starts singing a duet with him. They sound great together, and Ally is not looking happy at this. Renee is now really close to him, and Ally looks hurt, and leaves the bar. After the song is over, Renee and Greg look out into the audience for Ally's reaction, but she is gone.
Ally and Renee are talking about the scene in the bar, and Renee says it was only a song, but Ally begsto differ, and is upset that she was so close to Greg. Renee assures her that she would never betray her, even if she were interested in Greg. Speak of the devil, Greg is at the door, and Ally invites him in. He explains that he has taken a new job in Chicago as head of the ER. He also tells Ally that he thinks he's in love with her. Her reply to that is something like, of course you're in love with me, and then says the men in her life always leave town to promote their careers.( which is a definite stab towards Billy). Ally then asks him to leave and thanks him for the song.
The next morning Ally is getting ready for work and is dancing around to her theme song "Tell Him". All of a sudden, she spies the inflatable man and gets angry and starts beating him up. After some serious abuse, the doll pops and Ally stops and just sits there on top of it.
Ally is in court now, and it's closing arguments in the case of Bonner vs Henderson. Ally says this is not a case about feet, the case is that Mark entered Cheryl's apartment without being invited. She is saying that Mark is pleading insanity, insanity by reason of loneliness. She asks the jury what is it that people want most in life, she replies love. She agrees that Mark shouldn't have entered Cheryl's apartment, but adds "things that you regret the most are the ones you don't do". Renee comes up and pleads her side of it, and then the verdict is read.. Not guilty on both counts, and Mark thanks Ally. She mentions that he should seek counseling and John overhears this, and offers his therapist's card. Ally says "not that kind of therapy" and takes the card. Mark goes up to Cheryl and wants to talk to her. She agrees and they go have coffee and talk things out.
After court Ally runs into Greg, who mentions that the job was in the works way before he even met her. She says good luck and that he'll like it there. Chicago has the best ribs and the best cupboards. Everyone always talks about their cupboards. Greg catches on and says she means the Cubs- they're a baseball team. They agree not to say goodbye, and that they can keep in touch. Ally walks away and has tears in her eyes as she gets on the elevator.
Ally has gone back up to the office, and runs into Elaine. She asks Elaine "did you get me anything" (meaning a birthday present) and Elaine says no, she arranged the party for her, wasn't that enough? Ally says the singing and the party wasn't about her, it was all about Elaine, like it always is. Ally wonders when she'll give it up, and Elaine says "when she gets noticed".
Elaine then begins telling Ally a really sad story about wanting a bike back in her childhood. She wanted a bike and another girl got one and she didn't. Her parents couldn't afford to buy her one. She said she would sell herself to the guys at recess for a nickel to save up for the bike. She never did get that bike, but she got a bike horn instead, and the horn sure made alot of noise. She says she is just as entitled to her happiness as Ally is to her misery . Ally says she's not miserable just "not there yet". Elaine understands that, and she says she's not either, they just have different ways of dealing with it. Ally suggests to Elaine that she have supper with her and Renee. Elaine looks thrilled at the invitation but declines.
Ally is walking with Renee and they pass a street vendor who has balloons. Renee hands three balloons to Ally. Ally holds them for a minute then lets them float up into the air...
It is so funny we laugh hysterically, yet other parts can make you cry.
Special thanks to Wendy S.
Photographs courtesy of Fox Network
Copyright © 1998, w3PG, inc.