Friends With Benefits is the 18th episode of Season 4 of My Name Is Earl, and the 87th episode overall. When Mr. Turtle returns back to Earl, he wants to bring him back to Darnell. Meanwhile, Joy and Darnell settle into their new lifestyle of their cover identities.
Earl gets waken up at night by Randy jumping in to his bed, Earl gets annoyed and tells Randy has his own room but when Randy says he heard a scratchy noise Earl gets scared too as he think it’s the shower cap killer at the trailer park and goes to attack, but sees nothing out the window Randy heard rumours that the shower cap killer is a kid so they crouch before opening the door and find the scratching noise is Mr. Turtle who had found his way home after Joy lost him.
Earl takes Mr. Turtle to the Crab Shack which had become more festive since Kenny worked there, Randy brings along Mr. Turtle’s food that Darnell left him then Earl finds a note under the lid that Darnell left if his pet turtle was found. Earl phones Darnell who gave him his new address to ship Mr. Turtle to but Catalina tells Earl he couldn’t ship a turtle, Kenny suggest to take Mr. Turtle himself since he had the address so the next morning Earl and Mr. Turtle hit the road but left Randy behind because long car journeys made him sick and the medicine for that made him hungry. Randy tells Kenny how much he misses Earl, a man called Jim overhears and mistakes Earl for Randy’s lover so goes over to Randy and offers to take him to the movies, Randy doesn't realize what was going on and naively thinks Jim just wanted to be his friend so agrees.
Earl arrives at Darnell and Joy’s new house, but Joy was not happy to see him as she was having trouble making friends with the woman in the neighbourhood and thought they wouldn’t accept her if they saw Earl so kicked him out, Earl went to start his car and heard a cry of pain to find the smoke from the exhaust pipe had blinded a dog so immediately went to help it. Back at Camden Jim decide to go rent a video instead of going to the movies and feed some sauce to Randy then clean it off his lip, Randy told Jim Earl used to clean sauce off him and the hardest part about Earl gone was sleeping in the bed without him, Jim tells Randy take he could be his Earl Randy gets excited as he thinks Jim wants to have a sleep over.
Earl takes the dog to the vet and found its owner Carol who lived a few doors down from Joy; he apologised to Carol, explained about his list and tells her he wants to make it up to her, Carol gets interested about Karma as she and her friends were restless at night and were looking for things to help them sleep. Carol introduces Earl to her friends, Joy who was still trying to fit in tells the group Earl was her spiritual guru and to come over to her place so Earl could talk about Karma. Meanwhile Jim tells Randy he’s glad he let him stay Randy is too as now he could sleep, Jim thinks Randy was trying to say things were going too fast and should slow them down which he agrees too.
The next day Earl gives a presentation about Karma to the rich woman and mentions some things he did because of it, so the woman gave Karma a try by making up to their maids for mistreating them, afterwards they tells Earl that they would put him on Oprah and fast would Karma to give them what they want, in a panic Earl says a week. After the woman leave Joy asks Earl what he was thinking when he said a week and what he was going to do now, Earl tells her he would think of something and spends all night making plans. When the woman arrive the next morning Earl tells them they still had to wait six days for Karma to work but the woman don’t want what they requested anymore as they manage to sleep that night, they couldn’t wait to get back to doing nice things one of them was being less judgemental towards Joy.
That night Jim complains to Randy for sleeping in the same bed for three nights in a row and wants to do more Randy suggest that they could wrestle like did with Earl, then he sees Earl arrive back, Jim groans and sneaks out of the window but before he does he tells Randy to promise him not to let Earl hurt him again.
- This marks the last apperance of Mr. Turtle.
- The entire scene of Earl making an exposition about Karma, is similar to the one he did in the Season 1 episode The Professor. Also, during the exposition, he mentions two actions he did in previous episodes of this season:
- Earl went to Joy's new house to see Darnell to give him back Mr. Turtle, but throughout his whole three day stay at the house he never sees Darnell, or the kids.
- Earl's acrostic for karma:
- K - arma
- A - wesome
- R - eally good
- M - ost wonderful
- A - merica
Earl himself does not attempt to cross anything off the List in this episode. However, the three housewives that he visits all decide to make their own List in an effort to get new things from karma (but they all eventually settle with karma helping them to get to sleep). The List items they make are:
- Janine: To make up for this she massaged her maid's shoulders.
- Third housewife: Forced the maid to work on Christmas Day when her children begged for "black mommy". To make up for this she waxed her maid's moustache hair.
- "Wake Me Up Before You Go Go" by Wham! (Played at the Crab Shack)
- "I Want a New Drug" by Huey Lewis & the News (Sleep therapy)
- "I Feel Good" by James Brown (Good night sleep comes back)
- Randy: I can't believe there's a Patrick Swayze movie I've never seen before... "To Wong Foo". That sounds like it's got a lot of ass-kicking!
- When Randy discovers the new Swayze movie To Wong Foo he doesn't know that the film is in fact a gay icon movie, inspired in the famous Australian film Priscilla, which is starred by a Drag Queen played by Swayze.
- Earl Hickey: Darnell?
- Darnell Turner: So I'm gone for a week and there's no "Hey, Crab Man"? Well, I guess life goes on.
- Earl Hickey: Hey, Crab Man.
- Jason Lee as Earl Hickey
- Ethan Suplee as Randy Hickey
- Jaime Pressly as Joy Turner
- Nadine Velazquez as Catalina
- Eddie Steeples as Darnell Turner
- Morgan Fairchild as Carol
- Joan Van Ark as Janine
- Andrea Parker as Rich Lady
- Gina Fricchione as Wealthy Housewife
- Eric Allan Kramer as Jim
|< Season 3||My Name is Earl Season 4|
|#01||The Magic Hour||#08||Little Bad Voodoo Brother||#15||Darnell Outed (Part 1)||#22||Pinky|
|#02||Monkeys Take a Bath||#09||Sold a Guy a Lemon Car||#16||Darnell Outed (Part 2)||#23||Bullies|
|#03||Joy in a Bubble||#10||Earl and Joy's Anniversary||#17||Randy's List Item||#24||Gospel|
|#04||Stole an RV||#11||Nature's Game Show||#18||Friends With Benefits||#25||Inside Probe (Part 1)|
|#05||Sweet Johnny||#12||Reading is a Fundamental Case||#19||My Name is Alias||#26||Inside Probe (Part 2)|
|#06||We've Got Spirit||#13||Orphan Earl||#20||Chaz Dalton's Space Academy||#27||Dodge's Dad|
|#07||Quit Your Snitchin'||#14||Got the Babysitter Pregnant||#21||Witch Lady|