I set my recorder for Monday instead of Sunday and caught the follow up show instead of the original EM:HE….so this week we will get a different view of the show a la How'd They Do That?. ABC was kind enough to supply all it's viewers with a single picture of the Anderson's experience limiting our post show viewing enjoyment. Come along for the ride if you dare!
This week Extreme Makeover is challenged with improving the lives of the Anderson family. Rodney Anderson, who is now 22, was a high school basketball star and earned a scholarship from Cal State Fullerton. He was mistaken for a gang member and gunned down. There were three bullets that hit him in the back, paralyzing him. He has some movement in his arms and none in his legs. Rodney's sister and children moved back into the house to help out. When the incident happened Rodney was dating Monique. She saw him through the toughest times and is now his fiancé. Assemblyman Carl Washington, who has known of their struggles, nominated the family for an Extreme Makeover. Ty surprises the family in his usual fashion and the family are awash with emotion. This tight knit family huddles together in sheer joy of answered prayers.
Time to get down to the tour of the existing house. Here we find out that the Andersons had been granted money from the state to modify their house to fit Rodney's needs. They hired a contractor and he began tearing out walls where change was needed. Then he skipped out on the job, leaving the family with no money and a house riddled with problems. The house was so far from code that it really should have already been condemned. Again we find that there is another person that has doomed himself to that special hell for deadbeat contractors. The family seemed so embarrassed about their home. No one should have to feel that way, especially a family with so many challenges.
There are two new contractors working with Extreme Makeover: Home Edition who really want to get to the heart of this family's needs and wants for their home. They really seem to have what it takes to get this job done. The team decided to build two houses. One for Rodney and Monique as well as one for his ultra supportive family. Ty seems to think it is crazy to try to pull this off in seven days. He just might be right.
The Andersons loaded onto a bus and headed off to an unknown destination. Each family member was sure that they knew the location. Ty called them up to tell them they would be spending the week in the Bahamas. Cheers and smiles broke out on the bus and off they went. Once the family was safely in paradise Ty called them again with the video of the house demolition. Understandably the family had mixed feelings but everyone seemed to be fine with the changes to come.
Demolition was not as smooth as expected. They had problems with gas connections, sewage lines and rain falling on curing concrete. The contractors regrouped and convinced their framing team to follow through and finish the job through pouring rain. The commitment of these contractors is a shining example for the rest of the people in the same business. Cheers to them for their positive attitude.
Preston designed a bench that Ed constructed. It was the perfect marriage of design and function. They placed it between two trees in the backyard for a peaceful sitting area. It is so heavy that it took seven strong men to carry it to its final destination. Both Preston and Ed are thrilled with the result.
Looking around the neighborhood it is apparent that it is a dangerous place. In the week that Extreme Makeover: Home Edition was there, three young men from the community were shot and killed. Ed(looking like a skin head) took a spin around town with the police. They came upon a memorial of one of the kids that were slain that week. Ed was visibly moved by the state of the community. He knows that the team is making just a small dent with the community, but hopes that the effort will not go unnoticed and just might spark some change there.
Paige is working on a shadow box to hold his jersey and some of his photos of playing basketball. The sport meant so much to him and he will never play that way again. She is sure he will appreciate having a memorial to those days. Way too many violins playing and tears flowing in this segment. Whew!
We see the Andersons in a walk through tunnel aquarium. They are enjoying each other and the scenery very much. The father is overwhelmed by the beauty.
Ty is taking care of the parent's bedroom. He wants to take them back to the days when they were dating and first married with a retro feel room. It will be very sleek and clutter free. Relaxation is key here. The bathroom ties into the Zen theme as well. Joseph and Martha definitely deserve this luxury.
Rodney asked Monique to marry him and she accepted. She had only been dating him a few months when he was shot and his life changed forever. She stayed by his side and their relationship blossomed even through the turmoil. The team thought it was so wonderful that they deserve a nice wedding to finish off the story. Paige has been a wedding planner for five years and was up for the challenge. She delegated duties and the team spread out to take care of every detail. Ed got the cake and Tracey got the dress. Preston went shopping for the rings and he found this very disturbing. He broke out into a cold sweat as the perpetual bachelor. After he calmed down he ended up choosing a set of rings that were quite elegant and perfect for this couple. Paige concentrated on the simple but elegant details with flowers and candles. She also built them a little gazebo to keep in the backyard as a reminder of their union.
Late one evening a choir showed up to lift the spirits of the overworked team as they moved into their first ever day eight reveal. As the bus rolled away the cheers of the crowd and the family were deafening. The contractors came out with the design team this time. The contractor is paying the utility bills for a year to ease some of the strain the family is under. He told them himself through tears. There was not a dry eye on the block. Once in the house the family got the usual tour. The biggest reaction was over the laundry room. Ty said that they were more excited about the washer and dryer than the entire two houses. I guess that is when it hit home that all of their dreams for a better life had come true.
Rodney and Monique were married in the backyard at the gazebo with their family and friends around to celebrate their love. Both were thrilled at their union. The wedding was beautiful. What a perfect ending to this family's story.
That's it for this week's EM: HE How'd they do that?. Visit us again next week for the Extreme Makeover: Home Edition Recap.