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January 23, 2006 January 24, 2006 Canada="hiddenStructure"
Goodbye (1) (2)
Season 02, Episode 04
Air Date November 4, 2003 USA

January 23, 2006 January 24, 2006 Canada

Writer David Flebotte & Martin Weiss
Director James Widdoes
Previous Donny Goes AWOL
Next No Right Way

Goodbye is the first two-part episode of Season 2 of 8 Simple Rules.

Plot Summary[]

The Hennessy family must deal in their own way with the unexpected death of Paul. Cate's separated parents, Jim and Laura, come to visit and try to console the grieving family.


Cate and the kids are going about their usual morning routine, waiting for Paul to return from the grocery store with milk. The phone rings and Cate runs to answer it. After receiving shocking news, she runs out the back door, clearly upset.

Cate is on the phone making funeral arrangements for Paul when Kerry comes downstairs in her father's Michigan Sweater and sits in his chair. Rory also comes downstairs to make cereal and gets angry after realizing they still don't have milk. Cate's parents show up to console the family. Kerry goes upstairs to get Bridgette who can't bring herself to come downstairs. After Kerry questions her over the last conversation, Bridgette had with Paul, Bridgette snaps at her and quickly apologizes and goes downstairs with her.

As the family and friends gather around after the funeral, many people share their love for Paul and how great of a man he was. Paul's boss, Nick Sharpe, expresses why Paul loved to work at home even with three teenagers running around and Cate is deeply moved by this. Nick asks for Paul's last article because they haven't gotten it yet. Cate still can't bring herself to go to Paul's work area. Bridgette and Kerry are sitting on the couch and Rory walks up and gives Bridgette a hug and there is a bandage over his hand. His excuse was that he burnt it on a casserole dish. After a while, one of Bridgette's close friends shows up to be there for Bridgette and shares her envy over Bridgette's close relationship with her father. Bridgette reveals that if they were so close, why were her last words to him "I Hate You", and runs off.

Cate has a hard time going into hers and Paul's bedroom. After venting out her frustration over life being so cruel, she gathers her pajamas and goes downstairs to sleep, letting her mother sleep in their room. She goes into see the girls and they discuss Paul and the events of the past two days.

Finally, they read Paul's last article just before going to sleep.


Cate: (she is reading Paul's final article to the kids) "Okay, readers, today we're having a little pop quiz. It's multiple choice, so sharpen your #2 pencils and put on your thinking caps. Ready? Here's a quote. 'Dad, you're an idiot.' Now, contestants, this was said to me because of which of the following transgressions? A. Coming to the breakfast table wearing pajamas and black socks; B. Asking my oldest daughter if that guy I saw her talking to at school yesterday was her boyfriend; C. Referring to rapper 50 Cent as 'Fifty Cents'; Or D. Entering the room. Ok, pencils down. Actually, it was a trick question. The answer is all of the above. Now do you know how many times I called my father an idiot? Zero. Why? Because I feared him. Back then we didn't share our deep personal feelings; our deepest conversations usually involved the Tigers' bull pen. But my kids? I can't get them to shut up. There's not a feeling that my kids are afraid to express, over and over and over. And my wife reassures me this is a good thing, over and over and over. And she's always right. So do I wish that my kids feared me? Well, my house would be quieter and I'd spend a lot less time in the bathroom, but no. Because I know that whenever they insult me — whether it's a "You're an idiot," "What a geek," or an "I hate you" — an "I love you" isn't far behind. And it's the knowledge that my wife and kids love me that makes it safe for me to wear pajamas and black socks to the breakfast table."


This episode was later split into two parts for syndication.

This is the only episode to be shot without a live audience, however for syndication canned audience laughter was added for comedic relief.