"The Son That Got Away" is the twentieth episode of King of the Hill. It was first aired on November 23, 1997. The episode was written by Jim Dauterive, and directed by Tricia Garcia, both firsts in the series.
Bobby and Connie raise the ire of music teacher Eugene Grandy when they interrupt his class by adding their own lyrics to popular tunes. As punishment, Grandy calls Hank and Kahn to the school and voices his concerns regarding their disruptive behavior. It soon becomes apparent to Grandy that the men have set a bad parental image. But his efforts to change their behavior fails miserably. The next day, Hank and Kahn punish their children by making them perform chores. Bobby tires of cleaning out a rain gutter and makes his way to Connie's house. The children hop on their bikes and head off in search of adventure. During the ride, they encounter Joseph, who suggests a journey to "The Caves," a place where teenagers go to "make out." As the threesome make their way into the dark cave, they are spotted by Eustice's son, Randy, who warns them not to venture inside.
Bobby, Connie and Joseph ignore Randy and make their way into the darkened cave. Meanwhile, Hank, Kahn, Peggy and Minh embark on a desperate search for the missing children. Eventually they encounter Randy, who reveals that the children wandered into the caves. Hank panics. He tells Kahn that the caves are where teenagers go to "make whoopee." Later, Joseph, Bobby and Connie become trapped when their light sources extinguish, plummeting the cave into darkness. However, Bobby gets more light by using a glow worm, but notices Joseph and Connie are holding hands and becomes visibly upset.
The children begin to panic when they run out of food. When Bobby offers his body as a source of sustenance, he greatly impresses Connie. Hank and Kahn make their way into the cave...but Hank loses his bearings and the pair become lost. They fall through a narrow crevice and land in a pile of old beer cans. During the ensuing conversation, Kahn admits that Bobby is a "good boy" and doesn't fear becoming an in-law with his neighbor. The men swap stories, and their laughter echoes through the cave, attracting the attention of the children. The kids follow the sound...and inadvertently tumble through the crevice. Shortly thereafter, a beer can tumbles from above, striking Hank in the head. The group establishes communication with Boomhauer on the surface, and the fire department pulls everyone to safety.
After seeing that Bobby and his friends made it to the cave by themselves, Hank makes an acception and lets Bobby ride home with Joseph. During the ride home Bobby tells Joseph that Connie likes him, even though he says that she likes Bobby. They figure out that she likes both of them, and that women sometimes have trouble choosing between men. The two later make fun of each other, despite Hank driving behind them so they can't be spotted, and the episode ends.
- Bobby, Joseph, and Connie get lost in the Arlen caves, which causes Peggy to remark "Oh my goodness that is where half of Arlen's unplanned pregnancies begin." The next shot is of John Redcorn and Nancy giving each other a concerned look - hinting that Joseph was conceived in the caves.
- Bill states that his father used to punish him by forcing him "Pretty, pretty dresses." This effect on Bill is seen in the Season 3 Pretty, Pretty Dresses, in which Bill has a mental breakdown and wears a woman's dress while taking on the identity of Lenore. The title of that episode is also clearly chosen as a result of Bill's statement in this episode.
- This episodes marks the first appearance of Monsignor Martinez.
- Hank Hill
- Peggy Hill
- Bobby Hill
- Luanne Platter
- Dale Gribble
- Nancy Gribble
- Joseph Gribble
- Jeff Boomhauer
- Bill Dauterive
- Kahn Souphanousinphone
- Minh Souphanousinphone
- Connie Souphanousinphone
- Eugene Grandy (debut)
- Eustice Miller
- Randy Miller
- John Redcorn