Mike walks Molly back to her door after an evening at the movies. Molly is laughing about him pulling his badge on someone who was talking through the film- which Mike admits was actually a peppermint patty. Molly is charmed, and invites Molly to come in for a little while- her mom is at a pole dancing class at the senior center and Victoria is out doing who-knows-what they'd have the place to themselves. She kisses Mike, obviously hoping to take things a little bit further, but Mike claims that he has an early morning and leaves Molly disappointed at her doorstep.
The next day at the diner, Carl is teasing him about losing another hat to the wind- he had attempted to record a video of Mike running down the road yelling after it, but was laughing too hard. Carl changes the subject to Mike's date last night; it had been their third time going out, and he wanted details on all the nookie that he assumed had gone down. When Mike tells him that nothing went down, he asks if it's because he's embarrassed by his size. Mike is annoyed and planning on leaving, but right then Samuel brings out their orders and Mike isn't going anywhere.
Downstairs at the breakfast table, Joyce and Victoria are wondering if Mike had stayed the night. Molly comes in to join them, and the nosey duo are very curious about how her night went. Molly is still upset about Mike taking off the night before, and is worried that he's not attracted to her. Joyce wonders if she gave him clear enough signals, but Molly is sure that the only way she could have been clearer is if she "pulled up her skirt and fired a starter pistol."
Molly pushes aside her own self-doubts and declares that she doesn't need a man to know her own self worth; she's a intelligent, interesting woman and doesn't need a man to validate that. After she leaves the room, Joyce and Victoria decide that they need to find her a new guy before she becomes a crazy cat lady.
In the squad car, Mike- still not over his lost hat- now has his new one attached with a chin strap. Carl attempts to ensure him that it looks good, but even Mike knows it's ridiculous and unbuckles the tight-looking strap.
He gets a call from Molly, who is canceling their date for that night, claiming sickness. Carl is a bit disbelieving though- when a woman cancels a date the night of, it's never because of the story she gives you. Mike doesn't think that's what's going on, he tells Carl that Molly is so into him, she was practically throwing herself at him the last time they went out.
Carl again asks why he didn't sleep with her then, if she's so into him, and Mike gets defensive, again denying that it had anything to do with his weight. He makes Carl pull over and plans on walking the rest of the way, and as soon as he leaves the car, his hat gets stolen by the pesky wind. He gets back in the car and he and Carl go after the hat, sirens blaring.
Molly is on the couch with Victoria, trying to understand the appeal of the ridiculous show that her super-stoned sister seems to love when the doorbell rings. Unbeknownst to Molly, her mom had set her up on a date with her friend Vincent. Joyce tries to act surprised by Vincent's arrival, but Molly knows her mother, and she is not having it. She excuses herself and drags Joyce to the kitchen. It's no problem for Vince- his Viagra doesn't kick in for another hour, and even if things don't pan out with Molly, he's got his eye on Victoria much to her discomfort.
Molly tells Joyce that she gets that she's trying to help, but she doesn't want it. Joyce wants her to go back out and give Vince a chance, but Molly takes off through the back-door, even after Joyce proclaims that leaving her alone with Vince might lead to Molly finding herself with a new dad when she gets back.
Mike is at an OA meeting, where super-fit Marty is sharing about losing twelve pounds, finishing third in a triathlon, his abs video sales being very successful, and getting engaged to a swimsuit boodle. Mike is quietly mocking him a few rows back. Molly walks in, and upon seeing Mike, immediately turns back around. Mike follows after her, chasing her down the street and through traffic. She finally stops when she's out of breath and tells Mike that she doesn't want to see him anymore. Mike stands there, shocked and heartbroken, and the spiteful wind once again steals his hat.
Mike joins Carl and Samuel at a bar, where they're psyching themselves up to hit on women. He's dolefully tells them that Molly dumped him; he thought that he was going to spend the rest of his life with her. Samuel takes the chance to kick him when he's down, and tells Mike that with the way he's breathing, the rest of his life would have only been another twenty minutes. Mike's a little fed up with all the fat jokes (and honestly, it's about time), but Samuel tells him that in the village where he grew up, it was the fat man that got all the women, due to his size meaning that he had wealth. He suggests that Mike go to his country if he's looking to score.
About two pitchers of beer later, melancholy Mike is completely drunk and calling for more pretzels, despite Carl reminding him of his diet. Mike's over dieting though, he's over trying to take care of himself when no-one's ever going to love him. Carl tries to comfort him- HE loves Mike.
Samuel comes back from the bathroom- he found a girl's number written on the stall, but Carls tells him not to bother- he's already called it and it's a bust. Mike tells them that they don't need women, they all just cause problems. Carl agrees- the world would be a better place if there were no women to ruin things; then they could "just be guys, hanging out with other guys." Samuel hates to stick a needle in their little bubble of insanity, but he's really not drunk enough for where this seems to be heading.
Carl tells him that he just means that they don't need women to have a good time, a point he proves by…going to a strip club.
Mike is having doubts about the plans for the night, but Carl is determined to have them all get an eyeful of something naked. Mike wonders if some strippers have trouble taking their clothes; sometimes it can be scary getting naked in front of strangers. While drunk, Mike can finally admit to Carl and himself that he's been afraid of being undressed around Molly. The two drunkenly embrace in the backseat of the cab, and soon Mike, Carl, Samuel, and their cab driver find themselves on Molly's doorstep, with the genius plan of "just start talking and see where the liquor takes you."
Joyce opens the door, a little surprised to see a bunch of drunken men on the other side. Mike apologizes for coming over so late, but he needs to talk to Molly. Joyce informs him that Molly doesn't want to talk to him, and shuts the door in his face. Mike is determined to talk to Molly though. "So far this week I've lost three hats and a girlfriend, and I'm not calling it a night until I get one of them back!" he proclaims.
Molly is in her room when she heard a loud clatter outside her window, followed by off-key singing. Outside, Mike's somehow found a latter, and is now climbing up to her window, singing his heart out. Molly is not amused, but Mike's three friends are completely touched.
When Mike is face-to-face with Molly, he confesses that he had panicked earlier when she had invited him in, because he was worried about her seeing him naked. He had been hoping to lose a little weight first- just in the ballpark of over a hundred pounds- so that she would actually be attracted to him. Molly tells him that he's an idiot- she's not exactly perfect herself. Mike tells her she's wrong though- she's perfect to him.
Molly helps Mike make it through the window, but he ends up passing out thanks to the booze about half-way through. Molly yells down the other three just watching from the ground, and they manage to get Mike inside the house.
Once again conscious and in bed with Molly, Mike tells her that nothing's probably going to happen that night. Molly understands and Mike talks about how he just wants the first time between them to be perfect. Molly apologizes if it seems like she was rushing things, but she just really wanted to be with him; Mike wants the same, and starts to sing once again before being quieted by Molly. She tells him to get some sleep and kisses him. Mike says goodnight to Carl and Samuel, who are both sleeping on Molly's bedroom floor.
After the disaster of last weeks episode that had me hoping for a quick cancellation, I was really pleased that this week's episode managed to bring back the charm that it had showed in episode two. There are definitely problems with the show, but this week definitely proved that it has so much potential when it's being well-written. Rather than using it's plus-size actors to make pointless fat jokes, this week they used that size to deal with an issue that many of us have faced before: body image. Mike's worry and embarrassment over his size and what Molly might think at seeing him naked was incredibly heart-felt and one of the most believable things the show has done so far. Before, we've seen both Mike and Molly struggle with their weight and attempt to change it, but it's always been something that was there to be played off for laughs. This week though- while still humorous- managed to find the underlying fear that many larger people face of seeing themselves as not being good enough.
Molly has always been the character that in spite of her weight, knows that she's deserving of love and respect, and that's something that I've really enjoyed seeing portrayed by her character. Mike though, is very much her opposite; his self-worth seems to be in direct correlation with his weight and how others perceive him. Being able to see a large (male) character on television whose more than just the 'schluply fat sidekick', but who has actual issues with his weight and is lacking that confidence that every fat comedic character seems to have is oddly refreshing.
I would love to see the show continue in this vein- where the writing is tight, the characters are three-dimensional, and the humor is about putting a comedic twist on very real feeling that people have, rather than just using the first fat joke that gets pulled out of a hat.