Home Improvement: The Longest Day

This episode scares the crap out of me because JTT has to get a cancer test after his mom tells the doctor that he’s been so sleepy. And the doctor felt swelling in JTT’s neck!

I’m chronically tired and sometimes I have a lump on my neck. But I’m a 25 year-old workaholic, hypochondriac with bad allergies, so I guess we’re not in the same boat.

Anyway, Jill keeps the cancer scare from JTT because she doesn’t want to scare him until they know what they’re dealing with. But they can’t keep it from him. They’re too busy spoiling him and he notices something is up.

And it’s moments like this that remind you that JTT isn’t just charming and skating by on his good looks. He’s actually a talented actor. COME BACK TO US JTT! I’m sure there’s a place for you in one of the 75 reboots currently in the works.

Jill and next-door neighbor Wilson have a really great heart to heart about how quickly things can change in an instant. It’s not sappy at all and is genuinely moving, which means it creeps my emotions out too much to actual comment on it at this point.

Meanwhile, JTT has gone missing. Jill’s still awaiting the phone call from the doctor, while Tim goes out looking for him. He’s at the arcade. That’s probably where I would be too.

He’s pissed that his parents didn’t tell him immediately that he might have cancer. I’d probably be pissed too. It’s awful to discover that while researching it alone at the school library. (Ugh, bad parenting moment, Tim and Jill.) And then they all come together as a family, lovingly and rationally calming their child’s fears.

Okay, the pot episode was stupid. But Home Improvement may have just won The Very Special Episode with the story of how JTT got cancer.

Oh wait. But you didn’t actually think he’d get cancer did you? This is a sitcom, and that’s way too sad of a fate for our favorite 90’s idol. He’s fine! He has hypothyroidism. The end!

Very Special Lesson: Be sure to keep important facts about your children’s health out of their knowledge. That way, when they notice they feel crappy and have been to the doctor for a lot of tests, they can fear the worst without the benefit of your health and guidance.

5 thoughts on “Home Improvement: The Longest Day

  1. As a thyroid cancer survivor I abhorred this episode and still do. It is NOWHERE NEAR the reality of the thyroid years. It took years and many procedures to find the cancer that NO BLOOD TEST found!!!

    Nodule on the right side of my thyroid and that side was enlarged. Meds didn’t do anything to lessen the enlargement but did help with how I was feeling. So my Dr wants a sample of the nodule but it was solid so I had to go to someone else for a large needle biopsy (this is a whole other fiasco) and it comes back benign– at least, the part they took.

    So a few years later my neck is no better, in fact it’s worse so I find an ENT (whom I still see) who is also a head and neck surgeon and he and I discussed my neck… He wants to remove the enlarged half, send a bit to the lab to looky loo while I’m open and on the table (if they found anything they would have removed the other half right then). So again, nothing comes up. So then comes the 8week or so checkup and then I hear they found something when the lab chopped up that half and painstakingly looked at each little bit under the microscope. So I schedule another surgery to remove my other half.

    Ok… I found my thyroid problem in 1998. Drs here and there and first removal 2003summer. 2003 Thanksgiving was when I scheduled my second removal.

    1. I’m so sorry you had to go through all of that! I agree, these sitcoms are not adept to handle this kind of subject matter. And there’s literally no way to make it realistic in a 30-minute format. I get the idea of wanting to show the agony of waiting around for a scary test result, but real people have to deal with these issues and I do wish the writers were more sensitive about how they depicted this.

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