This week on The Goldbergs, everyone forgets Adam’s birthday so he lives out his own version of Sixteen Candles with the help from Erica. Barry and Lainey are still planning on getting married but their parents decide to intervene.
It was 1980-something and Adam Goldberg envisions spending his 16th birthday like a John Hughes film. Unfortunately, his wish comes true but in more ways than one. Not only did Adam get a Sixteen Candles-style party, but his family also forgot it was actually his birthday. Erica also comes to terms with her recent lifestyle choices thanks to Adam’s truth bomb.
The episode of The Goldbergs, appropriately titled “Sixteen Candles,” also focuses on Barry and Lainey’s plans for marriage. Their parents aren’t taking the news very well considering the young age of their children. In typical Beverly fashion, her smothering behavior seems to scare away Lainey during a trip to Atlantic City. It looks like Barry and Lainey’s relationship might be in danger after all of the intervention from their parents.
Inspired by John Hughes
The Goldbergs has already proven that Adam is a major fan of John Hughes movies. Considering it’s his milestone birthday, he quickly starts to realize his life is mirroring Sixteen Candles. Beverly and Murray are so preoccupied with Erica and Barry, they all forget it’s Adam’s birthday. His siblings claim he’s the golden child but that doesn’t they aren’t doing much to prove that notion.
While at school, Adam’s friends convince him to throw a raging party just like the movie. They want to relive the wild moments in Sixteen Candles so Adam decides to get party advice from Pops. His ideas are a little outdated so Adam turns to Erica for help. Since Erica dropped out of college, she learns that she ran up the electric bill because of her band equipment with Valley Erica. She agrees to help Adam to set him up to get caught throwing a party so they will overlook her recent behavior.
Murray, Beverly, and Lainey’s dad, Bill, are having trouble coming to terms with the marriage news. To give Barry and Lainey a taste of reality, Beverly takes them to an open house to show them the expenses of adulthood. The young couple vaguely mentions having children someday and the news quickly turns Beverly’s tune. The thought of grandkids excites Beverly so much that she becomes suddenly onboard with their marriage.
Even though the kids clarify that it would be years before they have a baby, Beverly begins supporting their decisions. She declares that the Bevolution is officially suspended as she shifts her focus from herself to her future grandkids. Murray knows that they played the baby card so Beverly supports them. Erica then suggests that Murray, Beverly, and Bill take Lainey and Barry to Atlantic City so they can figure out the future. In reality, Erica wants them gone for the day so they come back later and catch Adam throwing a party.
Bill is trying to gamble away the wedding money saved for Lainey’s wedding in the hopes of preventing her from marrying Barry. Beverly buys an Atlantic City onesie for her future grandchild. She also reveals her plans to live with Barry and Lainey to help raise the child which scares away Lainey.
Beverly’s involvement and smothering tendencies are freaking Lainey out and driving her away. After Lainey leaves, Barry promises he will never have kids if Beverly continues acting this way.
Murray becomes the voice of reason by repairing Lainey and Barry’s relationship. He tells the young couple that they can survive anything, even Beverly. She might get too involved sometimes but Murray assures them that it is better for Beverly to have their back.
He also tells Lainey that she will always be family no matter what happens in the future. Beverly, who is hiding behind a lifeguard chair, emerges and apologizes to Lainey. They find common ground and everything is back to normal until Beverly remembers they all forgot Adam’s birthday.
Adam’s raging party is going just like the movie but the house is in ruins and there is a giant hole in the ceiling. Adam realizes this is too much for him to handle and he wants Erica to take credit for the party. That would ruin her plan because she needs it to be Adam so he’s the one who gets in trouble. It doesn’t help Erica’s efforts considering the party guests think his name is “Alden Goldfinch.”
Erica finds Adam playing board games with his friends in the designated nerd area. All this time, Adam thought the party was Erica’s gift to Adam and she has no idea what he means until Pops shows up with a birthday cake. Erica feels awful and confesses that she set him up and totally forgot it was his 16th birthday. Adam gets so upset that he calls Erica a “selfish dropout loser.”
After the infamous ponytail-stuck-in-door situation, Erica breaks into Adam’s room to apologize. She feels bad for how she treated Adam and tells him how she is emotionally struggling with her current dropout status. In a sweet moment, Adam shares how he has always idolized his older sister.
They decide to go back to the party and Adam has the night he always wanted. He even gets to recreate the Sixteen Candles cake scene until Beverly comes bursting in. She jumps on the table with him and it collapses on the floor but not before his wish came true.
New episodes of The Goldbergs air Wednesday nights on ABC at 8/7c!