Quarantine Post #80: My Life in TV. (Late 80s-90s)


The late 80’s/ early 90’s were an interesting time to be a kid. My mother was very strict on the things that I watched as a kid… She heavily monitored what was on television. That usually meant I was relegated to either PBS, Cartoon Network, Disney, or Nickelodeon. And even so… my mother had a few cartoons that she still didn’t allow me to watch. (Ren & Stimpy). I already did a post about kid’s gameshows so you won’t see any mention of those here. This post is about everything I watched that got me through my elementary and middle school years.

So I will be breaking this post down into different categories. Because I like categories. So let’s jump into it.


  1. The Magic School Bus – SEATBELTS EVERYONE!!! Mrs. Frizzle was the truth. We all know that it is based on the book series of the same name by Joanna Cole and Bruce Degen. The Magic School Bus was prominent at the Scholastic Book Fair. And I was all about the book fair. It ran from 1994 to 1997 on several PBS stations in the United States. Like the books it’s based on, the show focuses on the exploits of Ms. Frizzle and her class of eight students (nineteen in the books) who board their titular school bus, which takes them on field trips to the solar system, inside the Earth, and inside the human body, or to other such impossible locations. It is the prequel and predecessor to 2017’s The Magic School Bus Rides Again. Remember the theme song is legit. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egmmYxXhScQ)

  2. Wishbone – Some of you guys haven’t learned your classic literature from a dog. And it shows. Whatever your feeling on what constitutes a classic… you have to give credit where it is due. Wishbone ran from 1995 to 1997. The show’s title character is a Jack Russell Terrier. Wishbone lives with his owner Joe Talbot in the fictional town of Oakdale, Texas. He daydreams about being the lead character of stories from classic literature. Only the viewers and the characters in his daydreams can hear Wishbone speak. The characters from his daydreams see Wishbone as whichever famous character he is currently portraying and not as a dog. Fun times. Kids always love dogs… The kicker here is that in high school when reading things like The Odyssey, Beowulf, or Chaucer… I could remember scenes from Wishbone. It really helped with my understanding of the foundation years later. The show won four Daytime Emmys, a Peabody Award, and honors from the Television Critics Association. Also, this theme song was legit as well. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SZLEvrkbFcQ)

  3. Shining Time Station – This was my introduction to Thomas and Friends. When I mention it to people, no one knows what I am talking about. I thought it was a figment of my imagination. It incorporated sequences from the British television show Thomas & Friends, which was in turn based on the books of The Railway Series written by the Reverend Wilbert Awdry. The series aired on PBS from January 29, 1989, until June 11, 1993, with 4 one-hour-long “Family Specials” premiering in primetime throughout 1995.  In its first season, the show averaged a 0.9 Nielsen rating, translating to about 1.2 million viewers on average. At the peak of its popularity, the show brought in up to 7.5 million viewers per week. Mr. Conductor is a tiny man who lives in a signal house inside the station’s mural and tells the stories taken from Thomas & Friends to the kids. He also introduces songs to the kids in The Anything Tunnel. 

  4. Lamb Chop’s Play-Along – Lamb Chop is a half-hour preschool children’s television series that was shown on PBS in the United States from January 13, 1992, until September 22, 1995, with reruns airing on PBS until August 29, 1997. It was created and hosted by puppeteer Shari Lewis and featured her puppet characters Lamb Chop, Charlie Horse, and Hush Puppy. I annoyed the hell out of my mom with the song that doesn’t end. Good times. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_47KVJV8DU)

  5. Reading Rainbow – What countdown would not include Levar Burton and Reading Rainbow? Here is a show that I almost never watched at home. I always saw it at school just before I was to head to the library to pick a book for Accelerated Reader or a book report. The show was designed to encourage a love of books and reading among children. Each episode centered on a topic from a featured children’s book which was explored through a number of on-location segments or stories. The show also recommended books for children to look for when they went to the library. It is the third-longest running children’s series in PBS history, after Sesame Street and Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0YtYMzh8lxk)

  6. Babar – The series is based on Jean de Brunhoff’s original Babar books, and was Nelvana’s first international co-production. The show has been dubbed in 30 languages in over 150 countries. the plot of the first two seasons focuses on the story of Babar as it is told by him to his children. The past Babar is a young elephant who, traumatized by a hunter slaughtering his mother, flees from his home forest in exile to the city, where a kind Old Lady adopts him and teaches him the ways of human life. He returns to his home forest full of ideas for progress and, following the previous elephant king’s death from eating poisonous mushrooms, hatches a plan to drive out the unnamed hunter and his men. For his heroism, Babar is crowned king of the elephants, plans and builds Celesteville, and grows up to become a father himself. While the first two seasons focus on Babar’s recollections of his childhood and early years as king, as well as some stories told by his children, the series shifts its focus in the third season to Babar’s family life in the present day. Fun times. In 2010, a computer-animated sequel series spin-off of Babar titled Babar and the Adventures of Badou premiered on Disney Junior in the U.S. The new series takes place several years after the original and focuses on a majority of new characters including Badou.

  7. Bill Nye, The Science Guy – I was never a science person but Bill helped ease the pain. The show aired in syndication from September 10, 1993, to February 5, 1999, over six seasons and 100 episodes; beginning in season 2, a concurrent run was added on PBS from October 10, 1994, to September 3, 1999, with the show’s first run remaining in syndication. The show won critical acclaim and was nominated for 23 Emmy Awards, winning nineteen. Studies also found that people that viewed Bill Nye regularly were better able to generate explanations and extensions of scientific ideas than non-viewers.

  8. Gullah Gullah Island – There was nothing more fun than seeing a family that looks a bit like you on television. It is an American musical children’s television series that was produced by and aired on the Nick Jr. The show was hosted by Ron Daise and his wife Natalie Daise, both of whom also served as cultural advisors, and were inspired by the Gullah culture of Ron Daise’s home of St. Helena Island, South Carolina, part of the Sea Islands. Gullah Gullah Island is a sing-along half-hour live-action show. The format was part of a flexible thinking initiative that taught children to make good choices rather than using memorization. Episodes are presented with a unified plot and not separate segments, featuring singing, dancing, learning, and encouraging children to think about things like taking care of themselves, and animals, telling the truth, social skills, and problem-solving. The show also highlights the culture and language of Gullah, descendants of former slaves who live on the Sea Islands off the coast of South Carolina and Georgia. Critical reception of the show was consistently positive, both as a children’s show and as a groundbreaker for African American programming, it was praised for “vividly colored sets, infectious sing-alongs, unique character accents and quirky humor that defined the show and introduced millions of children to an overlooked but centuries-old branch of African American culture. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFrTmvnY-C4)

Horror / Ghosts and Other Weirdness

  1. Are You Afraid of the Dark? – Yes… when I was a kid… I was totally afraid of the dark…. so watching kids meet in the dark to tell scary stories by campfire ALWAYS SCARED THE CRAP out of me. But not enough to make me stop watching. The original series aired from 1990 to 1996. It led to two revival series, with the first airing from 1999 to 2000, and the second debuting in 2019. My personal favorite was that each storyteller would begin their story by saying “Submitted for the approval of The Midnight Society, I call this story ‘(story name)'”, at which point they would toss a handful of “midnight dust” from a leather pouch into a campfire to heighten the flames and produce an eerie white smoke. The themes of the stories usually revolve around a variety of paranormal phenomena, such as demons, ghosts, magic, haunted houses, magical curses, aliens, witches, vampires, werewolves, and the like coming into contact with average youths. The episode that comes to mind is the Tale of the Frozen Ghost… and the Tale of Apartment 214. Don’t forget about Dr. Vink and Sardò.

  2. Tales from the Cryptkeeper – I did watch the original live-action version… younger me was interested in scaring the hell out of myself. And this was no different. It was based on the 1950s EC Comics series Tales from the Crypt and the live-action television series of the same name, which aired concurrently on HBO. Made for children, Tales from the Cryptkeeper was significantly milder than its live-action version, and all blood and gore, profanity and sexual content were completely removed in order to target the audience. The series details the Cryptkeeper telling other horror stories to the viewers, each with a lesson to be learned. There were not nearly enough episodes. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N1j1ely4YoY)

  3. So Weird – Oh Disney… They tried to get scary… And they did. It is considered as “X-Files for kids”. The series centered on the teenage Fiona Phillips while encountering paranormal activity along the way. Stringing together all of Fi’s paranormal encounters was her search to communicate with her father, who died when she was three years old. Fi first “encounters” her father in the second episode titled “Web Sight” where an unknown force sends her internet articles warning her of the future. From alien invasions, time warps, and ghosts, Fi faced 13 episodes worth of paranormal activity.

  4. Beetle Juice – Fun and creepy. The animated series focuses on the life of Goth girl Lydia Deetz and her undead friend Beetlejuice as they explore The Neitherworld, a ghoulish wacky monster supernaturalistic realm inhabited by monsters, ghosts, ghouls, goblins, and zombies. The show ran from September 9, 1989, to October 26, 1991, on ABC, and on Fox from September 9, 1991, to December 6, 1991. Throughout the entire series, Beetlejuice would often try to scam residents of the Neitherworld—and, sometimes, the “mortal world” as well (Lydia’s parents were occasionally victims of his pranks)—by various means, from “babysitting” where he literally sits on the grotesque Neitherworld babies to trying to beat them in an auto race.

  5. Goosebumps – You knew it was coming. I have had a blog post about this… but I knew immediately when they announced there would be a television show… I was going to lay my eyes on it. The Haunted Mask is still creepy. I remember being like 9 and thinking… Carly Beth is going to look like a monster for the rest of her life. It was too much. Night of the Living Dummy was also a scary one. It is really the reason that to this day I do not like ventriloquist dummies. Goosebumps was a television series based on R. L. Stine’s best-selling book series of the same name. It is an anthology of stories about tweens and young teens finding themselves in creepy and unusual situations, typically involving supernatural elements or the occult. The book series has sold over 400 million worldwide in thirty-two languages, becoming the second-best-selling book series in history, after J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter. Individual books in the series have been listed on several bestseller lists, including the New York Times Best Seller list for children. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PkFLTfID_o)

  6. The Secret World of Alex Mack – I loved this show as a preteen. It was on Nickelodeon on SNICK. It ran from October 8, 1994, to January 15, 1998. Nickelodeon’s golden number before cancellation is 4. The series concluded with a two-part finale in 1998. Alexandra “Alex” Mack is an ordinary teenage girl, living with her parents, and her older sister, Annie, in the industrial town of Paradise Valley, Arizona. The town is largely funded by Paradise Valley Chemical, a chemical factory that employs most of the adult residents, although the factory’s staff and history are notoriously shady. While walking home after her first day of junior high school, Alex is nearly hit by a truck from Paradise Valley Chemical, and during the incident, she is accidentally drenched with GC-161, an experimental substance developed by the factory. She soon discovers that it has given her strange powers, including telekinesis, shooting electricity from her fingers, and the ability to dissolve into a mobile puddle of water. Alex finds this exciting and fun, however, her powers prove to be unpredictable (occasionally, her skin glows a bright yellow when she is nervous). She confides only in Annie and her best friend Ray, choosing to keep her powers a secret from everyone else, including her parents, for fear of what the chemical factory’s CEO, Danielle Atron, will do to her if she finds out. I thought that Alex Mack was pretty cool in the beginning but the series got darker as time went on. Seasons 1-2 mostly deal with cheerful misadventures and comedic encounters with incompetent Paradise Valley Chemical staff Vince and Dave. Seasons 3-4 take on a more serious and dark development, where it is revealed that Danielle Atron had been developing GC-161 as far back as the 1970s and that she may have had fellow scientists and researchers systematically assassinated to cover up GC-161’s mutagenic effects on people.

  7. Ghost Writer – Ghost Writer was a show that I watched before school on a lot of occasions. I was rushing through my morning routine to try and sit for 30 minutes in the morning before walking to school. Ghost Writer is an American children’s mystery television series created by the Children’s Television Workshop and BBC Television. (BBC Television has been sucking me in since I was young.) It began airing on PBS on October 4, 1992, and the final episode aired on February 12, 1995. The series revolves around a group of friends from Brooklyn who solve neighborhood crimes and mysteries as a team of youth detectives with the help of a ghost named Ghostwriter. Ghostwriter can communicate with children only by manipulating whatever text and letters he can find and using them to form words and sentences. I grew up in NY and love mysteries so it didn’t take long for me to fall in love with it. The series was designed to teach reading and writing skills to schoolchildren. Each mystery was presented as a case, covering four 30-minute episodes. Children were encouraged to follow each mystery, and use the reading and writing clues given to attempt to solve them just as the Ghostwriter team does in the TV series. Ghostwriter was critically acclaimed and honored for presenting a realistic, ethnically diverse world in its two-hour mystery stories. By the end of its third season, Ghostwriter ranked in the top five of all children’s shows on American television.

After School / Weekend

  1. TaleSpin – The Jungle Book was one of the few Disney movies that I had on VHS tape that I watched in HEAVY Rotation… So when I saw there was a tv show with Baloo… I couldn’t care less what it was about. TaleSpin is an animated television series first aired in 1990 as a part of The Disney Afternoon.  The show is one of nine Disney Afternoon shows to use established Disney characters as the main characters, with the other eight being Darkwing Duck, DuckTales, Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers, Goof Troop, Bonkers, Quack Pack, Aladdin, and Timon & Pumbaa. It is also one of two animated television series based on the book The Jungle Book, the second being Jungle Cubs. TaleSpin is set in the city of Cape Suzette (a pun on the dish Crêpe Suzette), a place that’s similar to San Francisco, California. The city lies in a large harbor or bay enclosed by a high cliff wall. A single cleft in the wall is the harbor’s only means of access. The cleft is guarded by anti-aircraft artillery, preventing flying rabble-rousers or air pirates from entering the city. The time frame of the series is never specifically addressed but appears to be in the mid-to-late 1930s, based on Baloo’s Seaplane and other things, possibly in the last stages of the Great Depression. In the show, the helicopter, television, and jet engine are experimental devices. Radio is the primary mass medium, and one episode even briefly alludes to the characters having never heard of television. The series centers on the adventures of a bush pilot, Baloo the bear, whose air cargo freight business, “Baloo’s Air Service”, is taken up by Rebecca Cunningham because Baloo hasn’t made payments to the crooked businessman, Shere Khan. Rebecca changes the name to Higher for Hire. (Cute.)  An orphan boy and former air pirate, Kit Cloudkicker, attaches to Baloo and becomes his navigator. Their adventures often involve encounters with a gang of air pirates led by Don Karnage, as well as with representatives of Thembria (inhabited by anthropomorphic Warthogs) The theme song is the truth… To this day… my dad knows what I am talking about. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rVTD-LtpW0M)

  2. Darkwing Duck – When there’s trouble you call DW. That theme song is the truth. My father’s eyes still twitch at the idea. When Disney plus announced they would have this… I was stoked. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YziVpa8oZDg) Darkwing is an animated superhero comedy television series that first ran from 1991 to 1992 on both the syndicated programming block The Disney Afternoon and Saturday mornings on ABC. A total of ninety-one episodes were aired. It features the adventures of Darkwing Duck, who is the superheroic alter-ego of ordinary suburban duck Drake Mallard. Darkwing Duck shows the adventures of the superhero, aided by his sidekick and pilot Launchpad McQuack (from DuckTales). Darkwing struggles to balance his egotistical craving for fame and attention against his desire to be a good father to his adoptive daughter Gosalyn and help do good in St. Canard. Most episodes put these two aspects of Darkwing’s character in direct conflict, though Darkwing’s better nature usually prevails. The show was the first Disney Afternoon series to emphasize action rather than adventure, with Darkwing routinely engaging in slapstick battles with both supervillains and street criminals. “I am the Terror that flaps in the night.” It still makes me smile. Check out Jim Cummings talking about it here (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OwWuV4B4VIM&t=190s) Jim Cummings actually voiced a lot of characters throughout Disney’s Afternoon Block. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WoNFgUjSBTE)

  3. Chip n Dale: Rescue Rangers – This an animated adventure comedy television series that ran from 1989-1990. What is up with that Disney? From 1990 to 1993 reruns of the show were aired as a part of the Disney Afternoon lineup. I have found out during this post that a lot of what I was watching in the 90’s… was reruns… (DISNEY). Chip and Dale are two chipmunks who start a detective agency, Rescue Rangers, along with their friends Gadget Hackwrench, Monterey Jack, and Zipper. The pint-sized detectives deal with crimes that are often “too small” for the police to handle, usually with other animals as their clients. The gang frequently finds themselves going up against two particular arch-villains: Mafia-style tabby cat Fat Cat and mad scientist Norton Nimnul. Most of the episodes followed a similar format, wherein the next case was presented at the start of the episode, then the bulk of the episode had the sleuths gathering clues and investigating the situation. In the last few minutes of the episode, the case was resolved… in a dramatic way. Disney went off went it came to these themes songs. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hFXTa2yeYWs)

  4. DuckTales -You knew it was coming. The original cartoon series premiered on syndication and on Disney Channel on September 18, 1987, and ran for a total of 100 episodes over four seasons, with its final episode airing on November 28, 1990. The show follows Scrooge McDuck, his three grandnephews Huey, Dewey, and Louie, and close friends of the group, on various adventures, most of which either involve seeking out treasure or thwarting the efforts of villains seeking to steal Scrooge’s fortune or his Number One Dime. When Donald Duck decides to join the US Navy, he enlists his uncle Scrooge McDuck to look after his nephews, Huey, Dewey, and Louie. The show’s primary villains consist of those from the comics: Flintheart Glomgold, who seeks to replace Scrooge as the “richest duck in the world”; the Beagle Boys, who seek to rob Scrooge of his fortune and often target his money bin; and Magica De Spell, who seeks to steal his Number One Dime. DuckTales is well noted for its many references to popular culture, including Shakespeare, Jack the Ripper, Greek mythology, James Bond, Indiana Jones, and Sherlock Holmes. The theme song was so good… they didn’t even change it for the reboot. Check out both versions (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqZ_Cb2slBw). The new version is not bad. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YKSU82afy1w)

  5. Aladdin – Disney knew what it was doing when they put out television shows. Aladdin was another movie that I had on VHS tape… and was sure enthralled with the show. It aired from February 6, 1994, to November 25, 1995, concluding exactly three years to the day from the release of the original 1992 Disney film of the same name on which it was based. Despite the animated television series premiering four months before the first film sequel The Return of Jafar, it takes place afterward. The second and final animated film sequel was the 1996 direct-to-video film, Aladdin and the King of Thieves. Many of the films’ stars provided the voices of their TV counterparts, with the notable exception of Dan Castellaneta filling in for Robin Williams in The Genie role (like in The Return of Jafar). A total of 86 episodes were produced, making this series one of the few exceptions to Disney’s then-limit of 65 episodes. The direct-to-video film Aladdin and the King of Thieves serves as the series finale. The series is set in the fictional city of Agrabah. It takes place one year after the original film and is set after the second film. Aladdin, now engaged to Princess Jasmine, embarks on numerous adventures with his companions. Not on Disney Plus at the time of this post. Check out the theme song here (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zfoZ1xOBwkw)

  6. Timon & Pumbaa – Timon & Pumbaa, is an animated buddy comedy television series that ran for three seasons on CBS, Toon Disney, and in syndication as a part of The Disney Afternoon. It aired from September 8, 1995, to September 24, 1999. It is the first of two television series to be based on the film, the second being The Lion Guard. The series is primarily set after the events of the first film, although some episodes are set before or during those events. It involves the characters having misadventures in different settings, including the jungles of Africa, Canada, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kP7tsWCEMzg)

  7. Doug – Now this I did a separate blog post for but since we are here… The show focuses on the early adolescent life of its title character, Douglas “Doug” Funnie, who experiences common predicaments while attending school in his new hometown of Bluffington. Doug narrates each story in his journal, and the show incorporates many imagination sequences. The series addresses numerous topics, including trying to fit in, platonic and romantic relationships, self-esteem, bullying, and rumors. Many episodes center on Doug’s attempts to impress his classmate and crush, Patti Mayonnaise. Doug, a mostly autobiographical creation, was largely inspired by Jinkins’s childhood growing up in Virginia, with most characters in the series being based on real individuals. He first pitched Doug as a children’s book to uninterested publishers before Nickelodeon purchased the show. The original run consisted of 52 episodes over four seasons that were broadcast from 1991 to 1994. Nickelodeon opted against renewing the show for a fifth season, so in 1996, Disney green-lit the fifth season after acquiring Jumbo Pictures.

  8. Swat Kats: The Radical Squadron – Hanna-Barbera has entered the chat. Swat Kats was all action all the time… and I was here for it. Swat Kats is a 1993-1994 animated television series created by Christian and Yvon Tremblay and produced by Hanna-Barbera Cartoons. The series takes place in the fictional metropolis of Megakat City, which is populated by anthropomorphic felines, known as “kats”. The SWAT Kats are two vigilante pilots who possess a state-of-the-art fighter jet with an array of weaponry. Throughout the series, they face various villains as well as competition from Megakat City’s militarized police force called the Enforcers. Jake “Razor” Clawson and Chance “T-Bone” Furlong were members of Megakat City’s paramilitary law enforcement agency, known as the Enforcers. They were discharged from the Enforcers after disobeying the orders of Commander Feral, which resulted in the destruction of the newly built Enforcer Headquarters. While in pursuit of Dark Kat, one of the main arch-villains of the series, the two rebelled against Enforcer Commander Feral’s orders to fall back and leave Dark Kat to him. When they objected, Commander Feral crowded out their jet, clipping their wing and sending Jake and Chance’s jet crashing into Enforcer headquarters. The resultant explosion distracted Commander Feral, allowing Dark Kat’s escape. The Commander took no responsibility for the incident, discharged Jake and Chance from the Enforcers, and reassigned them to work at the city’s military salvage yard to pay for the damage to the Enforcer Headquarters that Feral caused. (Jerk) Using discarded military parts and weapons from the salvage yard, Jake and Chance built themselves a three-engine jet fighter called the Turbokat, along with a handful of other vehicles such as the Cyclotron (a motorcycle built into the jet’s seating, deployed from the bomb bay of the Turbokat like a missile), the TurboMole (a subterranean vehicle used to drill underground), the HoverKat (a militarized hovercraft), and the Thunder Truck (a militarized Jeep modified from their tow truck). All these vehicles are stored, along with a training area and other equipment, in a secret hangar below the yard. Razor and T-Bone now patrol Megakat City as the SWAT Kats, defending it against any kind of menace that threatens the city. Their enemies include the criminal mastermind Dark Kat, the undead sorcerer Pastmaster, the mutant evil genius Doctor Viper, and the robotic gangsters the Metallikats. The SWAT Kats also face many villains-of-the-week, such as Madkat and Volcanus. There were only 2 seasons and 25 episodes of the show. NOT NEARLY ENOUGH… I have a few other Hanna Barbera shows but I mean… they are way older than the late 80s. This opening is pretty great. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H0IQBWWabuU)

  9. Gargoyles – Gargoyles was pretty serious television for kids back in the day. It is an animated television series that ran from October 24, 1994, to February 15, 1997. The series features a species of nocturnal creatures known as gargoyles that turn to stone during the day. After spending a thousand years in an enchanted petrified state, the gargoyles (who have been transported from medieval Scotland) are reawakened in modern-day New York City and take on roles as the city’s secret night-time protectors. Gargoyles was noted for its relatively dark tone, complex story arcs, and melodrama; character arcs were heavily employed throughout the series. The series also received favorable comparisons to Batman: The Animated Series and X-Men. A total of 78 half-hour episodes were produced. In the year 994, the clan lives in a castle in Scotland. Most are betrayed and killed by humans while petrified and the remainder are magically cursed to sleep. A thousand years later in 1994, billionaire David Xanatos purchases the gargoyles’ castle and has it reconstructed atop his New York skyscraper, the Eyrie Building, thus awakening Goliath and the remainder of his clan. While trying to adjust to their new world, they are aided by a sympathetic police officer named Elisa Maza and quickly come into conflict with the plotting Xanatos. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CjI0TdvVbqI)

  10. The Famous Jett Jackson – I loved me some Lee Thompson Young. Lee Thompson Young plays Jett Jackson who plays a teenage secret agent on the wildly successful TV series “Silverstone,” and his life is like that of any Hollywood star. Every day, he deals with fans, agents, and managers, though sometimes he longs for a normal life. He gets a taste of that normal life when he insists that the show moves from Los Angeles to his father’s town in Wilsted, North Carolina, where he goes to school and hangs out with his friends. The move provides jobs to townspeople. Jett now spends part of his time with family, friends, and school, and the rest living the life of a working actor and celebrity. In doing so, Jett often ends up in sticky situations, usually aided and abetted by his childhood friend, J.B., his not-quite girlfriend Kayla, and sometimes by Cubby, Silverstone’s wacky special effects wizard.  It is a show within a show and I was cool with that. The show within the show, Silverstone, is about a spy who works for Mission Omega Matrix in order to save the world from villains like Dr. Hypnoto and The Rat. In contrast to Jett, Silverstone has no family, only his mentor, Artemus, and eventually his partner “Hawk” (surname Hawkins).

  11. The Jersey – The Jersey is a comedy television series based on the Monday Night Football Club books by Gordon Korman. The series aired on Disney Channel from January 30, 1999, to March 23, 2004. The Jersey tells the story of a teenager named Nick Lighter, who inherits a mystical, old football jersey from his grandfather. The Jersey has the ability to transport the wearer (and anyone in contact with it) into the bodies of professional athletes. Accompanying him are his friends, Morgan Hudson, Coleman Galloway, and Elliot Riffkin. The four teens decide to form the MNFC (Monday Night Football Club) and swear never to let the secret of the jersey be revealed. It was revealed in the episode Origin (Part 1) that the Jersey was once a cloak in Ancient Egypt and was later found by the wizard Merlin and later King Arthur. It is also revealed that after several centuries, Jersey would lose its powers, and the only way to restore it is to use thorn berries, vinegar, and sesame oil, and that it could not only leap into the bodies of athletes but also other people. It also seems to have the power of time travel, as it once sent either Nick or Morgan to the past or future. Another important fact is that if the wearer wears the Jersey for too long, he or she will disappear forever. They need to add this to the Disney Plus platform. I was deep into football back then so this was right up my alley.

  12. Tiny Toons – Tiny Toon Adventures is an animated comedy television series that was broadcast from September 14, 1990, to December 6, 1992. The show follows the adventures of a group of young cartoon characters who attend Acme Looniversity to become the next generation of characters from the Looney Tunes series. I loved Looney Tunes and Bugs Bunny so this was right up my alley. The series ended production in 1992 in favor of Animaniacs which premiered a year later; however, two specials were produced in 1994. (Tiny Toon Spring Break and Tiny Toons’ Night Ghoulery) The movie was watched religiously at my house. A revival series, Tiny Toons Looniversity, was announced in October 2020 and is set for a 2022 release. Tiny Toon Adventures is a cartoon set in the fictional town of “Acme Acres”, where most of the Tiny Toons and Looney Tunes characters live. The characters attend “Acme Looniversity”, a school whose faculty primarily consists of the mainstays of the classic Warner Bros. cartoons, such as Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Sylvester the Cat, Wile E. Coyote, and Elmer Fudd. In the series, the university is founded to teach cartoon characters how to become funny. The school is not featured in every episode, as not all of its storylines revolve around the school.

  13. Hey Arnold! – Hey Arnold! is an American animated comedy television series created by Craig Bartlett. It originally aired on Nickelodeon from October 7, 1996, to June 8, 2004. The show centers on a fourth grader named Arnold Shortman, who lives with his grandparents in an inner-city tenement in Hillwood, Washington. Episodes center on his experiences navigating urban life while dealing with the problems he and his friends encounter. Bartlett completed the cast and setting by drawing inspiration from people and locations where he grew up in Seattle, Washington, Portland, Oregon, and Brooklyn, New York. On March 2, 2016, a television film continuation of the series, Hey Arnold!: The Jungle Movie, was greenlit. It picks up from where the series ended and resolved the unanswered plotlines of the story. I have been rewatching this on Hulu but my guess is that it will end up on Paramount Plus soon enough. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vUsnJ9jlwns)

  14. All That – All That is an American sketch comedy television series. The series originally aired on Nickelodeon from April 16, 1994, to October 22, 2005. The series features original short comedic sketches and weekly musical guests aimed at a young audience. Its sketches parody contemporary culture and are performed by a large and varying cast of child and teen actors. Early episodes were taped at Nickelodeon Studios at Universal Orlando Resort and then moved to Hollywood at the Nickelodeon On Sunset theatre, where other Nickelodeon shows such as The Amanda Show, Kenan & Kel, and Drake & Josh were filmed. All That went on to become a fixture on Nickelodeon for over a decade, and has received acclaim for its diverse cast and impact on children’s television. The series has spun off several members of the cast in their own Nickelodeon television series with varying levels of success. I had a few favorite sketches. ( Everyday French with Pierre Escargot, Good Burger, The Loud Librarian, Vital Information)

  15. Animaniacs – Animaniacs is an animated comedy musical television series that ran from September 13, 1993, to November 14, 1998. It is the second animated series produced by Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment in association with Warner Bros. Animation, after Tiny Toon Adventures. It initially ran a total of 99 episodes, along with a feature-length film, Animaniacs: Wakko’s Wish. Animaniacs is a variety show, with short skits featuring a large cast of characters. While the show had no set format, the majority of episodes were composed of three short mini-episodes each starring a different set of characters, and bridging segments. A revival of the series was announced in January 2018, with a two-season order and many of the main voice actors returning. It premiered on November 20, 2020, on Hulu, with a second season premiering on November 5, 2021. A third season has since been ordered. Animaniacs parodied popular TV shows and movies and caricatured celebrities. Animaniacs made fun of celebrities, major motion pictures, television series for adults (Seinfeld, Beverly Hills 90210, and Friends, among others), television series for children (such as Barney & Friends and Rugrats). One episode even made fun of the competing show Power Rangers. Animaniacs also made potshots of Disney films, creating parodies of such films as The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, Pocahontas, Bambi, and others. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O7Q4tPTLUVk)

  16. Smart Guy– Smart Guy is where I explored my love of Jason Weaver. It was nice to see a black series with a Black Family and a Black father present. It ran for three seasons on The WB from March 26, 1997, to May 16, 1999. Set in Washington, D.C., the show centers on the misadventures of boy genius and youngest child T.J. Henderson who at the age of 10 moves from elementary school and gets transferred to Piedmont High School, where he ends up becoming a high school freshman with teenagers as his classmates. He must adjust to life with older, but not necessarily wiser, high school teenagers – including his brother Marcus and Marcus’ best friend Mo. Episodes typically deal with T.J.’s missteps of trying to fit in as a kid genius, while being a small kid in high school, as well as the contrast between his smarts and his brother’s underachieving nature. Tahj Mowry and Omar Gooding are the only main cast members that did not appear in every episode (which in the case of Mowry is quite unusual for the lead actor for a television series to not appear in all episodes). Tahj Mowry did not appear in the season 3 episode “Get a Job” and Omar Gooding in “A Little Knowledge.” Jason Weaver, Essence Atkins, and John Marshall Jones are the only cast members to appear in every episode. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UYdPNsd1WY8)

  17. Kenan & Kel – The show originally aired on the Nickelodeon network for four seasons, from July 15, 1996, to July 15, 2000. Set in Chicago, Illinois, the series follows mischievous Kenan Rockmore (Kenan Thompson) and his optimistic but dimwitted best friend Kel Kimble (Kel Mitchell), who go on a number of misadventures which usually occur as a result of Kenan devising a scheme to get rich quick or avoid trouble with his elders. The show employs a number of running gags. Episodes open and close with Kenan and Kel breaking the fourth wall by interacting with a studio audience, standing in front of a red curtain that is placed in front of the main set while they are still in character. A running gag of the openings is Kel never knowing what the night’s episode would be about and Kenan refusing to tell him, while the closings frequently feature Kenan coming up with a new scheme, often asking Kel to get various assorted items and meet him somewhere. Frazzled both times, Kel exclaims his catchphrase, “Aww, here it goes!”.These schemes are often foiled as a result of Kel’s aloof, happy-go-lucky nature. It won the “Favorite TV Show” award at the 1998 Kids’ Choice Awards. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jgC18L6UOKQ)

  18. Clarissa Explains it All – If you told me that Mellisa Joan Hart is in something… to this day… I will hop on it. In the series, Clarissa Darling (Melissa Joan Hart), is a teenager who addresses the audience directly to explain the things that are happening in her life, dealing with typical adolescent concerns such as school, boys, pimples, wearing her first training bra, and an annoying younger brother. I felt Clarissa understood me. I mean I too had younger brothers who got on my nerves. A total of 65 episodes were produced and aired from March 23, 1991, to October 1, 1994. From August 1992 onwards, the series headlined the popular SNICK (Saturday Night Nickelodeon) lineup. In 2015, a novel was released, Things I Can’t Explain, which serves as a sequel to the series. In the novel, Clarissa is now in her late 20s and trying to navigate life as an adult. Clarissa was credited with becoming the first Nickelodeon series to feature a female lead, which led the network to create other shows such as The Secret World of Alex MackThe Amanda Show and The Mystery Files of Shelby Woo. Its popularity among both boys and girls also helped to debunk a myth that a children’s series with a female lead would not appeal to boys. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0BerpDmVSE)

  19. Sabrina, the Teenage Witch – It is Melissa Joan Hart again…. But I watched this show more for Harvey than anything else. Sabrina the Teenage Witch is a television sitcom, based on the Archie Comics series of the same name. It premiered on Friday, September 27, 1996 on ABC to over 17 million viewers in its “T.G.I.F.” lineup. It stars Melissa Joan Hart as American teenager Sabrina Spellman, who, on her 16th birthday, learns she has magical powers (a departure from the Archie Comics series, in which she has known of her powers since an early age). She lives with her 600-year-old aunts, witches Hilda  and Zelda, and their magical talking cat Salem. As a novice witch, her spells often go awry. Her witch aunts counsel her on the proper use of her magic and give her moral advice. Additionally, Hilda and Zelda have to take care of Salem, a witch turned into a cat for trying to take over the world. Sabrina’s basic premise and “genial loopiness” earned the show comparisons to the 1960s television series Bewitched.

  20. The Mystery Files of Shelby Woo -The Mystery Files of Shelby Woo is a children’s mystery television series that ran on Nickelodeon between 1996 and 1999. A total of 41 episodes were produced.  the series revolves around the adventures of a teenage girl who lives with her innkeeper grandfather and works as a non-sworn intern at the local police department where she helps out with odds and ends around the office. Occasionally an intriguing case comes to Shelby’s attention, prompting her to apply her unique insight and enlist the help of her friends to solve it. Her supervisors, however, do not appreciate her help, as she is only a teenager. Her grandfather also does not want her getting involved in cases, often reminding her, “We are not detectives with warrant badges, we are innkeepers with brooms.” Many of the stories, with three clear suspects, keep the audience guessing until the truth is ultimately explained. Nickelodeon did not give enough episodes to some of these shows that I love.

  21. Brotherly Love – Anything Lawrence Brothers… Sign me up. I could date any one of them. (Still to this day.) Three real-life siblings star in this series about an older brother who returns to the family business a year after his father dies. Joe just wants to cash out his share, but he realizes that the business could use his help — and his half brothers need a father figure. Now Joe is clashing with his equally strong-willed stepmother about how to run the business and deal with the boys. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7FJ45FJY_Os)

  22. X-Men: The Animated Series – I was never into Marvel but I never counted X-Men in that. X-Men is an animated superhero television series which debuted on October 31, 1992, on the Fox Kids Network. X-Men was Marvel Comics’ second attempt at an animated X-Men TV series after the pilot, X-Men: Pryde of the X-Men, was not picked up. The series deals with social issues, including divorce, Christianity, the Holocaust and AIDS hysteria, and feelings of loneliness. X-Men crossed over with the animated series Spider-Man, when Spider-Man seeks out the X-Men’s help to stave off his progressing mutation. The first season of the show brought the X-Men into conflict with human conspirators building mutant-exterminating Sentinel robots, Magneto and his attempts to instigate a human-mutant war, and the powerful mutant Apocalypse’s plans to eradicate the weak, both human and mutant alike. The second season sees Cyclops and Jean get married and become the targets of Mister Sinister, who hopes to use the genetically perfect combination of their DNA to create an army of obedient mutants. Morph returns, having been rescued by Sinister and brainwashed into forcing the X-Men apart. The season also features the growing rift between humans and mutants, spearheaded by the Friends of Humanity, an anti-mutant group who lead the persecution of all mutants. 

  23. Spider-Man: The Animated Series – The series aired on the Fox Kids Network from November 19, 1994, to January 31, 1998, for a total of five seasons comprising sixty-five episodes, and ran reruns on Toon Disney’s Jetix block and on Disney XD. The series follows Peter Parker, a college student at Empire State University who struggles to balance his responsibilities as the hero Spider-Man with the problems of his personal life. Parker must navigate his romantic affections for love interests Felicia Hardy and Mary Jane Watson; maintain his friendship with Harry Osborn; focus on his academic performance as Dr. Curt Connors’ student; and help to support his Aunt May after the death of his Uncle Ben by working as a freelance photographer for the Daily Bugle. As Spider-Man, Parker faces various supervillains that threaten New York City, including criminal masterminds such as the Kingpin and the Hobgoblin, scientific mishaps like Doctor Octopus and the Green Goblin, and the alien symbiotes Venom and Carnage. 

  24. The Wild Thornberry’s –  The series portrays an American family of wildlife documentary filmmakers known as the Thornberrys, which consist of the British nature documentary television host Nigel, his wife and camera operator Marianne, their 16-year-old daughter Debbie, their younger daughter Eliza, their adopted son Donnie, and a chimpanzee named Darwin. The series focuses in particular on Eliza, who has an ability to communicate with animals. The Thornberry family travels to every continent and wildlife environment in the ComVee, a recreational vehicle equipped with safety mechanisms to handle any terrain or body of water, to document their journeys in detail, with typical episodes involving Eliza befriending an animal and subsequently finding herself in peril. The series premiered on September 1, 1998, on Nickelodeon as the eleventh Nicktoon. It ran for 5 seasons containing 91 episodes in total, with the series finale airing on June 11, 2004.

  25. Goof Troop – It is an animated sitcom television series produced by Walt Disney Television Animation. The series focuses on the relationship between single father Goofy and his son, Max, as well as their neighbors Pete and his family. Walt Disney Pictures released two films that served as follow-ups to the television series: the theatrical A Goofy Movie, released on April 7, 1995, as well as the direct-to-video sequel An Extremely Goofy Movie, released on February 29, 2000, as the series finale. Goofy, a single father, moves back to his hometown of Spoonerville with his son, Max. As it happens, Goofy and Max end up moving in next door to Goofy’s high school friend: Pete, a used car salesman and owner of Honest Pete’s Used Cars; Pete’s wife Peg, a real estate agent; and their two children, son P.J. (Pete Jr.) and younger daughter Pistol. Max and P.J. become best friends and do practically everything together. A large portion of the show’s humor comes from Max’s relatively normal personality sharply contrasting with his father. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ts7–zxXXKQ)

  26. Mighty Morphin Power Rangers – Mighty Morphin Power Rangers is a superhero television series that premiered on August 28, 1993, on the Fox Kids programming block. It is the first entry of the Power Rangers franchise and became a 1990s pop-culture phenomenon along with a large line of toys, action figures, and other merchandise. The original series also spawned the feature film Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie, released by 20th Century Fox on June 30, 1995. Despite mixed reviews, it was a modest financial success and earned a cult following. The series takes place in the fictional town of Angel Grove, California. On an exploratory mission, two astronauts discover an extraterrestrial container (referred to as a dumpster as a result of its smell) and breach the unit, inadvertently releasing the evil alien sorceress Rita Repulsa from 10,000 years of confinement. Upon her release, she and her army of evil space aliens set their sights on conquering the nearest planet—Earth. The wise sage Zordon, who was responsible for capturing Rita (and also being enemies on Zordon’s homeworld, Eltar), later becomes aware of her release and orders his robotic assistant Alpha 5 to select five “teenagers with attitude” to defend the Earth from Rita’s attacks. The five teens chosen are Jason Lee Scott, Kimberly Hart, Zack Taylor, Trini Kwan, and Billy Cranston. Zordon gives them the ability to transform into a fighting force known as the Power Rangers. This provides them with superhuman abilities and an arsenal of weapons, as well as colossal assault machines called Zords which can combine into a giant humanoid machine known as the Megazord. And then Tommy came along…DRAMA. I remember when I used to have to sit t my dad’s job… (Circuit City) and he would set me up to watch the Rangers. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nHalaFUqnTI)

  27. James Bond Jr – Whenever I mention this show… People have no clue what I was talking about. James Bond Jr. is a character described as the nephew of Ian Fleming’s spy James Bond. While attending prep school at Warfield Academy, James Bond Jr, with the help of his friends IQ (the grandson of Q), and Gordo Leiter (the son of Felix Leiter), fight against the evil terrorist organization S.C.U.M. (Saboteurs and Criminals United in Mayhem), a SPECTRE-like organization. Expanding on his uncle’s famous line, James Bond Jr’s catchphrase was “Bond, James Bond… Junior. It debuted on 30 September 1991, with a total of 65 half-hour episodes produced. The series was mildly successful, spawning a six-volume novelization series by John Peel, a 12-issue comic book series by Marvel Comics published in 1992, and video games for the Nintendo Entertainment System and Super NES.

  28. My Brother and Me – My Brother and Me is an American sitcom, that originally aired on Nickelodeon. My Brother and Me is about the Parkers, a family living in the west side of Charlotte, North Carolina, who experience the highs and lows of everyday life. It premiered on October 15, 1994, and ended on January 15, 1995, with a total of 13 episodes over the course of one season. This definitely should have lasted longer. Alfie was the cool older brother and Dee Dee was the younger brother who always followed his older brother around and tried to be just like him. There was also a smarter, older sister named Melanie.

  29. The Adventures of Pete & Pete – The Adventures of Pete & Pete is an American comedy television series. It centers around two brothers, both named Pete Wrigley, and their humorous and surreal adventures in suburbia among their equally eccentric friends, enemies, and neighbors. it is an abstract and rather absurd portrayal of everyday suburban life in the United States. The antics of the two brothers of the same name and their various friends and enemies are ludicrous in nature, but it is often easy to identify with the potent suburban truths stated in the narrations of Older Pete.  It began as a series of one-minute shorts in 1989 that were shown in between regular programs on Nickelodeon. Owing to the popularity of the shorts, five half-hour specials were made, followed by a regular half-hour series that ran for three seasons (1993-1996) and continued in reruns until around 1999.

  30. Heathcliff – Anytime I refer to the orange animate cat… people assume I am talking about G. Heathcliff is a children’s animated television series that debuted on September 3, 1984. 65 half-hour episodes aired in first-run syndication in the fall of 1984, followed by the second season of 21 episodes in 1986. Each episode featured two segments, one being about Heathcliff and his friends, while the other featured The Catillac Cats. The Heathcliff segments focus on the everyday adventures of Heathcliff and the cast from the comic strip. At the end of the show, there is a short segment called Pet Tips where Heathcliff (or some other characters including Spike or Riff-Raff) would teach the audience certain safety tips when it comes to raising pets. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9LLb8EBU9nQ)

This was a fun trip down memory lane. I have realized that a lot of what I was watching in the 90s is syndication. I have also realized that the kid actors that I saw on tv were not much younger than me. But that is all I have for now so let me know your favorite shows as kids…. Until next time.

Quarantine Post #79: 90’s Kid’s Game Shows


A lot of my young life revolved around television. Yes. I did go out and play but my younger siblings were too young to play with for a long time… in the meantime I watched I lot of tv. It seems I grew up in the time of great kid’s game shows. I guess this was training me for things like Family Feud or The Price is Right. Watching tv with my niece and nephew now is bland because they don’t have any kid’s game shows anymore. (I may just be one of those that thinks the years she grew up was the golden age.) Anyway… I figured I would do a countdown of some of what I think are the greatest kid game shows I watched as a kid.

The 90’s were an interesting time. Pogs, Slap Bracelets, the Green Ranger and his Dragonzord, Goku and his nimbus. There is a lot that brings me that feeling of nostalgia but it is probably those that are on this list that bring me the most joy. I spent a lot of time hoping that I could visit Orlando Studios… (I finally got to go as an adult. Read that post.) I am going to try to keep this short… but we will see what happens.

  1. Nick Arcade – It originally aired in 1992 during weekend afternoons. Weekends were a good time for tv. We aw contestants face off in several different rounds of challenges involving trivia, video games, and live-action video games. Two teams of contestants played two initial rounds, with the winner advancing to play against the “Video Game Wizard” of the day. In the main game, the teams would navigate Mikey across an 18-square game board towards a Goal. Each step along the way triggered trivia quizzes, video puzzles, instant-win prizes, enemies, and video game challenges; Points! Puzzles! Pop Quizzes! and Prizes! The winning team got a chance to play in The Video Zone, a massive bluescreen background in front of which contestants would act as the character within a game, attempting to beat three levels, including one of three Video Game Wizards of the day. I used to love watching the teams move Mikey and what I now know as bluescreen and the contestants. Apparently, it was only on the air for a year. I totally wanted to be a video game. No way my mom was going for that though. So apparently, it is on Paramount Plus. That is definitely a plus for that streaming service.

  2. Double Dare – Back when you wanted to avoid being slimed… and it was thick and vomit-colored. (New slime is different.) This game show combined trivia questions with physical challenges. It’s been around the longest and has the most iterations: Double Dare, Super Sloppy Double Dare, Family Double Dare, and Double Dare 2000. Two teams (each either comprised of two children or two children and their parents) squared off in the main game of trivia questions, which could be answered in a number of ways: answer the question, dare the other team to answer it (doubling the value), returning a dare with a double dare (doubling the value again), or accepting a physical challenge instead of answering at all. I wanted it to be a physical challenge all the time. It almost always had to do with finding a flag or filling a canister in some outrageous way. The final course was always a bunch of mess. From finding flags in a giant fake pizza to having to pick a giant nose… I wanted to run the final course and get messy… but knew my mother would never slide down a slide with an ice cream sundae on it.

  3. Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? – PBS had a hit on their hands with this one… and they knew it. You can still hear the song, can’t you? This was before I was introduced to the computer game in middle school even though the show is based on the game. The game show was created after a National Geographic survey found that one in four Americans could not locate the Soviet Union or the Pacific Ocean on a map. (Sadness. But not surprised.) The game happened in 3 rounds with the player with the lowest score dropping off. Three contestants (Gumshoes) have been recruited by ACME Detective Agency to track down Carmen Sandiego and her henchmen by answering geography-based trivia questions. (Remember, She’s a double-dealing diva with a taste for thievery.) The Gumshoes were given Crime Bucks to start out, rewarded with more for each correct answer, and allowed to wager their Crime Bucks based on how certain they were as to the criminals’ location. (Something about the fact that Carmen was a woman that was smart enough to go undetected stuck with me even as a kid.) The second round saw the remaining Gumshoes looking for prizes and evidence hidden behind images of famous landmarks of that game’s location. Gumshoes had to find The Loot, The Warrant, and The Crook in that exact order to win the game. That winning Gumshoe then earned a chance to capture Carmen Sandiego in the bonus round’s World Map. The World Map was HUGE and blank. But everything in me knew I could conquer it. Younger me was a total nerd for geography, landmarks, and the like. The Gumshoe had to find and mark a number of locations in order to capture Carmen Sandiego and win the grand prize. The grand prize was almost always a family trip and I wanted to go somewhere as a kid soooooo badly. Nothing like yelling at the kids who couldn’t find Nicaragua. This was a show that I never missed… and was my first introduction National Geographic and why I love it now. This was a show that I NEVER missed. DO IT ROCKAPELLA!!! (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozYg8vDTmkc)

  4. Guts/Global Guts – Do you have it? Who didn’t love Mo… There was nothing that got me more hype than Guts. Because I felt that I had it. So this was my taste of Olympic events or extreme sports. GUTS was concerned with one thing: pure, athletic competition. Each episode featured three young athletes squaring off against each other in a series of four events based on extreme sports. You got points no matter where you placed… but the final competition was always what I was about. I wanted to conquer the Crag. The 28-30 foot tall artificial mountain featured strobe-light lightning, foam rock avalanches, glitter snow, and nuclear flying crystals. Kids had to navigate the perilous mountain climb while activating lights along the way, with the ultimate goal of climbing the mountain first. There were, if I remember correctly, 8 lights that had to be lit up along the way. If you missed one, you had to go back and it could cost you your place. The other thing I remember was the crag was broken down into 3 lanes… so the contestants were climbing at the same time. The final Crag Competition could put someone at the bottom over the top. The Crag was known as the Aggro Crag in season one and two, the Mega Crag in season three, and the Super Aggro Crag in Global GUTS. When I say… I begged my mother about climbing the Crag… and she ignored me lol. Good times. Some of the events were just great if not a bit outrageous. There were several different types of events, ranging from field sports to pool sports. Many events made use of elastic harnesses for aerial purposes. There were also track events and an obstacle course taking place in the gym. Apparently, also on Paramount Plus

  5. Legends of the Hidden Temple – This was definitely in my top three. As in another on the list that I never missed when it was on. I wanted to be a Silver Snake so badly. Who didn’t want to talk to the talking head Olmec? Six teams each comprised of one boy and one girl (between 11 and 14) would compete in a series of physical and mental challenges with the ultimate aim of retrieving an artifact from the titular temple. Teams were the Purple Parrots, Orange Iguanas, Blue Barracudas, Green Monkeys, Red Jaguars, and Silver Snakes. Olmec revealed mythological, historical, and geographical facts about each item. Teams went through three elimination rounds. And the team left standing got to go on the temple run to retrieve the artifact. That damn moat seemed stressful. Though each episode started with six teams, two of them were eliminated right away if they were the last ones to cross The Moat. The remaining four teams then advanced to the Steps of Knowledge where Olmec would relate the episode’s central story as well as the location of the artifacts within the temple. The two teams advanced down the steps by correctly answering related trivia questions about the story they just heard and then moved on to The Temple Games. These physical challenges appeared in a “Best of Three” series that not only granted the winning team access to the final round but also allowed them to earn Pendants of Life. These items allowed Temple Runners to escape the clutches of the Temple Guards as long as they had a full pendant to exchange. You could get half a pendant… but that would mean that you would need to find the other half pendant in the maze. In the Temple Run, the team had three minutes to retrieve the artifact inside and bring it back outside the temple. Inside the temple were three temple guards hidden inside three of the rooms. If a player was caught by a temple guard and if they didn’t have a pendant to save them, they were captured and their teammate had to go inside the temple and retrieve the item. For some reason… The Shrine of the Silver Monkey had kids stumped and that killed me because… it was only 3 pieces… HURRY UP AND JAB THE HEAD ON THERE! I wasn’t scared of the Temple Guards but I can see a person popping out at you being unnerving… I don’ think the kids were scared more than surprised.

  6. Wild and Crazy Kids – This was my introduction to Omar Gooding. There was no rhyme or reason to the show and for kids, that is really all they needed. Each episode consisted of three games with one host emceeing each game. The teams were identified by the color of the shirts they wore, which varied from show to show. The games varied in style; many were different takes on playground games, sports with unusual rules added, or messy games involving pies or slime. I distinctly remember an episode where kids had unusually large ice cream cones and had to slide down into a pool and whoever kept the most ice cream on the cone won. ODD but it apparently stuck. The majority of shows were filmed at various community parks and beaches in the greater Los Angeles area. Occasionally, the show taped special episodes at a theme parks such as Raging Waters, Wild Rivers, and Six Flags Magic Mountain. Unlike other Nickelodeon game shows, no prizes were ever awarded to any of the players. I just wanted a group of kids to do this with when I was younger. They had games like Dizzy Bat Home Run Derby, Three-Legged Soccer, Bumper Boat Lacrosse, Splash Football, Red light/Green light, Cops and Robbers, and Tug of War. Sometimes, this seems more like a comedy show than anything else. But it had a field day feeling and I loved field day.

  7. Figure it Out – This panel show featured children with special skills competing as contestants. While they stand off-screen and share their talent with the home audience, a panel of four Nickelodeon celebrities try to guess the predetermined phrase that describes the contestant’s particular skill. Something about Danny Tamberelli and Lori Beth Denberg getting slimed was fun. Figure It Out was a flip on kids’ game shows, putting the talents of contestants in the spotlight while having their celebrity peers try to guess, and then admire their talent. The show was so popular that a revival of it was launched in 2012; it lasted about a year.

Events for GUTS/Global Guts

So no I am not done gushing over GUTS. Here is a look at many of the events that the kids had to deal with. I just knew that I would conquer these… and it would be my crowning achievement. So let’s go… Track and Field

  • Moon Race – This event made use of Nickelodeon Moon Shoes, which were strapped to the players’ feet. Players raced around the track by jumping with the moon shoes on. Players must stay in their designated lanes or they’ll be disqualified, and the player who crossed the finish line first was the winner. This one was odd… but I wanted moon shoes. My friend had some and I was so jealous.
  • Wild Wheels – Players were buckled into a special recumbent tricycle, which they then pedaled around the track while going through some obstacles such as cones and ramps. Players competed one at a time, and if the player went off the track or missed an obstacle during their run, he or she received a two-second penalty. The player who finished this course in the fastest time was the winner. This looked hard and I was not about that life. I knew I could ride a bike but I hate sand. I would not have made it. But I am sure that would have been fun.
  • Eat My Dust – In this event, players, going one at a time, rode a BMX bicycle around the track, while having to deal with obstacles such as the “Bump n’ Dump” ramp, a sand trap, the “Tippin’ Tubular Tunnel”, the “Sack Attack” (a series of swinging punching bags) and a final ramp before crossing the finish line. A two-second penalty was imposed on a player if they went off the track during their run. The fastest time was the winner. Again… maybe I could do it now… but I didn’t have confidence… the punching bags were a lot.
  •  Blade Runners -The contestants wore in-line skates, which they used to race around the track, going through some obstacles as they went along, including a pair of low hurdles (the Limbo Bars), a series of flags or cones (the Frantic Flags, or the Slalom), some swinging punching bags (the Sack Attack), a low tunnel (the Car Wash), and a final ramp. Players received a two-second penalty if they stepped off of the track during their run. Fastest time won. I think I have only ever seen this once… but I know it was subconsciously added to my fuel to learn in-line skating. My mother thought that was too dangerous but I mean it was nothing as extreme as this.
This seems like a lot.


  • Basic Training –  One of the most frequently played events, players navigated a six-station obstacle course (seven in Global GUTS) one at a time. To prevent making strategies based on their performance, opposing players were not allowed to watch contestants run the course before their turn. Players had to complete each obstacle before moving on to the next one (any missed obstacle resulted in a disqualification). The player who cleared the course in the fastest time won. 
    • Obstacle 1– It was either the cargo net or the wall climb. Cargo net always seemed to slip people up. Since it was the start of the competition, it usually set the tone for the rest of the I usually thought if it was me… I would have a chance if I was up against the wall…
    • Obstacle 2 – It was either the tightrope walk, rings, or the Tarzan swing. I know that tightrope walk always made me cringe. The gymnastic rings… or the swing seemed a bit easier but I have seen people have to start all the way over.
    • Obstacle 3 – Usually seemed the easiest to me… The Freefall, Slide for Life, Fire Pole… any of these things…now that I am older I can see this was to break up the course… with something a little less energy. I always wanted to jump from a high platform onto a large into an airbag. I’ll do it at some point… but some things are more acceptable if you are a kid. Like the fire poles.
    • Obstacle 4 – I always thought it was the worst because it almost always (at least when I was watching it… ) the elastic jungle… and people had a HARD time with it. A lot of people got delayed in the jungle. The other obstacle was the tire crawl… which by comparison was so much easier.
    • Obstacle 5 – Wall Climb or Cargo Net, depending on which of those two obstacles was first.
    • Obstacle 6 – Tube slide where they land in the GUTS pool or the free fall depending on if it was used in obstacle 3.

Pool – The pool always freaked me out because I couldn’t swim… I know how to stay afloat now… still wouldn’t call it swimming. They made things seem like a real Olympic event because of these damn water cannons.

  • Invisible Boat – Players were hooked to an elastic cord and given a paddle. The players used the paddle to walk themselves across the pool before touching the end of the pool with their paddle; this was made more difficult by means of several water cannons creating rapids in the pool. Fastest time won. In the 1994 season, this event was made a bit more difficult, in that players were now required to paddle to the end of the pool and then back. As such, in this version of the event, not touching both ends of the pool with one’s paddle resulted in an automatic third-place finish. People had the weirdest forms trying to get from one side of the pool to another. Some people could not get across. Their feet were just flailing but not moving.
  • Boogie Down –  With rapids active, players, who were hooked to a harness, use a rope to pull themselves from one end of the pool to the other and back while kneeling on a kneeboard (boogie board). Fastest time won. The pitfall here was having the board take a nosedive into the water… and it slows you down completely.
  • White Water – With rapids active, players had to paddle an inflated raft around two buoys and to the end of the pool, where they gave a high five to a spotter to end the race. If a player did not go around a buoy, he or she got a five-second penalty added to their time. The player with the fastest time won the event. In the first two seasons, if the player exceeded a 60-second time limit, he or she would get an automatic third place.
  • Totally Tubular – The swimming pool was divided into three lanes for this event, and each lane had an equal number of inner tubes. Players simultaneously swam to the other end of the pool, having to put the inner tubes over themselves as they swam along. After touching the end of the pool, they had to swim back to the starting point with the tubes still on them. The player who made it back to the starting point first was the winner. However, if a player did not touch the end of the pool before coming back to the starting point, or missed any inner tubes, he or she was disqualified. This seemed impossible to me because really… who is supposed to swim this way? But other kids were doing it which means… I was behind on what I felt I needed to know about
  • Power Ski – Hanging from a harness, the player’s feet were strapped to a special (trick) water ski. With the Wave Ball active, the object was for the players to pull themselves from one end of the pool to the other and back while on the ski, high-fiving the spotters at each end. The fastest time won the event. This seemed like one of the few things I could do but even this had some pitfalls. The pitfall here was having the ski take a nosedive into the water… and it slows you down completely.


Field events were fun… because it was something I could mimic out in the field with my friends. I was definitely thinking that I could have come out on top in these events.

  • Free Kick – Two automated cannons shot several soccer balls at each of the players in front of the nets. (Kinda scary… but I was pumped about it.) Players had to block as many of the soccer balls as they possibly could in the allotted time (30 seconds in seasons 1 and 3, and 45 seconds in season 2 and Global GUTS), and the one who blocked the most shots won.
  • Wild Pitch – Things get a little more dangerous here. Cannons shot several baseballs at high speeds directly at the three players. (Yikes!) In earlier playings, the object of this game was to dodge as many balls as possible in 30 seconds, with the player getting hit the fewest times being the winner. The second and more familiar version of this event gave the players a baseball bat to use. Here, they tried to hit as many balls as they could with their bats in 30 seconds (45 seconds in season 2), with the winner being the person who hit the most balls.
  • Blast It – Players stood in a center circle as soccer balls poured out of an elevated tube. There were three separate goals set in a triangular fashion outside the circle (each one representing the player’s color), and the object was to score as many soccer goals as they could in 60 seconds. Players could not leave the center circle or touch the ball with their hands. There was a lot going on here. Maybe too much.


These were the most epic events. I was down to do bungee jumps off the top of the alter. Kids had so much trouble climbing back up to jump again. LOL. Poor kids. Even with the energy they had.

  • Bull’s Eye – Modeled after archery, players were equipped with crossbows and velcro arrows. With the help of the elastics, they jumped off the Aerial Bridge and fired the arrows at the targets in front of them. Only arrows that actually hit the bullseye counted, and they only counted after the player hit the ground first before bouncing back up. The player with the most bullseyes scored in 60 seconds won the event (45 seconds in one season 3 episode). There was nothing you can tell me. I was winning this.
  • Slam Dunk – This one is my favorite Aerial. To me, this is the only way to play basketball. If not with a bungee cord… then why do it? Slamball comes close but… not really. Players jumped off the Aerial Bridge and attempted to shoot a basketball through an elevated basketball hoop with each jump. Baskets only counted if they were made after the player touched the ground. All three players competed at the same time, and the player with the most baskets scored in 60 seconds won.
  • Spirals – Football… more or less… with a twist. Add an Aerial Bridge to anything and that makes it 100 times better. Especially in the mind of a kid. With all three competing at the same time, players jumped off the Aerial Bridge and tried to throw footballs through a set of tires and into a net.  The player with the most footballs thrown into his or her goal in 45 seconds (60 seconds in season 2) won.
  • Over the Top – This was modeled after high jump competitions. Each player, one at a time, jumped off the Aerial Bridge and tried to jump over a hurdle at a set height. Each player received three jumps (two in one episode). If a player successfully cleared the hurdle, it was raised for the next jump; if not, the player attempted the next jump at the same height. The player who jumped the highest was the winner.
  • The Longest Yard – Another Long Jump Event. Each player jumped from the Bridge and tried to make the longest distance they could away from it, making their mark by planting their feet in a sandpit in front of the bridge. Jumps that did not include two footprints in the sand did not count. The player making the longest jump won the event. Fun times had by all.
  • Jump! Jump! – This event was based on hurdling competitions. Players jumped off the bridge, over two high hurdles, and onto the bridge on the opposite side, before jumping over the hurdles again and back onto the original bridge. A five-second penalty was imposed on a player if he or she knocked a hurdle down, and in the first two seasons, a two-second penalty was imposed if a player needed help from the spotters. The player who cleared this event in the fastest time won the event.
  • Make Your Mark – Each player jumped from the Bridge and, upon jumping back up, tried to make their highest mark on a yellow wall with paint resembling Nickelodeon’s famous green slime. In earlier versions of this event, players put plastic gloves on their hands and dipped them in paint before trying to slap their hands on the wall. In later playings, players jumped into a giant ink pad (in season 1, players jumped into green ink, and in season 2, players jumped into inkpads corresponding to their jersey color) and then tried to make their mark on the wall with their feet. The highest jump won.
  • Zero G – There was no way I could do this even in my mind. So it is what it is. The contestants were suspended sideways and had to run across a sideways track with hurdles and trampolines (“Black Holes”). They also had to make their way around the “Edge of Nothing,” a sharp turn onto the other side of the track. The player who cleared this event in the fastest time was the winner.
  • Slam-A-Jama – This was a variation on Slam Dunk… where each contestant played both offense and defense. Each player had 30 seconds to score baskets in a hoop inside of a center cylinder while the other players tried to reject the shots. After one player has had their turn, he or she then went on defense against the next player. The player with the most hoops scored won. Players on defense could not grab onto the basket while they tried to defend against a player on offense; if they did grab onto the basket, they would lose a point that they scored on offense. Good times. I would have loved to try this.

So in the end… These were some of the kids shows that I watched religiously. My mother was not impressed with some of them… (There was no way I was going to pick a giant nose.) These shows were a large part of the reason I wanted to visit Universal Studios Florida for the long time. I am down to see some of them come back for a new generation. Definitely, things like GUTS, Legends of the Hidden Temple, and Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego. A lot of these are being shown on Paramount Plus. I am wondering if that is enough to get a new service. I was Disney Plus for the nostalgia factor…. But we will see. Where in the World is Carmen San Diego can be found on Youtube for now… I loved my trip down memory lane for now. Tell me what your favorite kid game shows were when you were younger… But that is all for now.

Quarantine Post #78: What Really Grinds My Gears


These past two years have been interesting. The older I get the more I find it is the little things that annoy me. I’ve become crotchety which is odd because I am pretty laid back. I’d like to think that I let a lot of things go. But something about these situations irk me to no end. I could complain about the price of things going up but that is the story of everyone’s lives. With working from home, I have realized there are many things that are not on my list of fun. As a kid, I loved going grocery shopping with my mother but in my adult life the shine has worn off. So without further ado… here is what really grinds my gears.

Grocery Store

  1. Grocery shopping has gotten on my nerve so badly that I really avoid places like Walmart on a whole. I do not care how much money I could be saving. There is something about not being able to get out of there. I used to think that it was an issue with the locations nearest me, but then I traveled and I realized that they shifted to Supercenters… and cared not about getting people on the registers. Here I am 15 years later still complaining about their lack of registers. They want you in there and never to leave. I have been at places where they will see people waiting and then open a register. Walmart never does that.
  2. In the pandemic, the grocery store was the place that I still had to interact with people regularly. And I am not talking the staff. The workers are usually great. (They really should be paid more money.) When I say people… I mean customers. I am not sure what it is about me that makes me want to bump into me with their cart…? People just walk like they are the only person in the store. I used to jump out of the way but now I keep walking and watch the look of panic on the other person’s face when they see me from a mile away… get in my path and then realize I am not moving to accommodate them.
  3. So… what is with the need to walk down the center of the aisle? No one can get past you on either side… as you meander down the aisle looking at things you know you’re not going to buy. The person always looks up like “Am I in your way?” Of course you are. You are in everyone’s way because you are in the middle of the aisle. The aisles are narrow enough but here you come. Reading the ingredients on something you aren’t going to buy.
  4. I would have assumed that chain stores had the same foot print. But it is incredibly annoying to walk into a store and it have a completely different layout than the one near your home or the one by your job. Makes the trip longer trying to figure out where they have stashed the product. Shopping for my mother, I spent 20 minutes at a store looking for where they kept the q-tips. Pharmacy or Baby aisle. It was neither by the way.
  5. Goodness gracious… don’t let there be a storm coming then people lose their minds. Now keep in mind I live in an area where blizzards, tornadoes, severe thunderstorms aren’t frequent. (Rain yes. SEVERE thunderstorms… no.) So when there is an announcement that there may be some weather that is not sunny… people head out in droves to buy up all the eggs and bread they can find. That usually makes it hard for me on my weekly trips. They announced that there would be a bit of snow a few weeks ago. (Let me point out that when we get snow… it is usually gone by mid day.) I went in to get a few things and every other person had like 6 loaves of bread in their carts. Weird. I had to get loaf because mom eats toast with breakfast and it was almost gone.
  6. So now I am heading into checkout and there is nothing better than standing in line and the person behind… has their cart touching your back. And they can’t imagine why they keep getting the evil eye from you. Why are you so close? Why do I have to ask why you are so close? No one is going to hop in front of you blatantly. You don’t have to be so close.
  7. The only complaint that I have with the workers… and I find that I am in the minority now… but when the baggers just jams a bunch of things into the bags. That annoys me. (I am aware though that people ask for that… so you know. A sign of the times.) My fruit ends up bruise and packages end up opened. It doesn’t save me any time or energy if I have to chase by water down that has rolled away. Just saying.


Let’s move into the movie realm… I used to work for a 3rd party company that took calls (complaints) for a large moviehouse. I have never seen so many people complain about something that was not a big deal… Since working this job… the idea of going to the movies has worn thin for me. Now new movies are coming out on streaming services there is no need to rub elbows with strangers anymore. People are weird.

  1. Nothing like sitting next to a person who keeps looking at their bright phone. (It is always weird to me how bright other people keep their phones… I wear glasses too…) Calling themselves being discreet but you can tell that they have no idea what they are doing. They usually have the brightest lights and think no one will notice after the lights go out. And then get offended when people say something about it.
  2. Feet on the back of the chair… That has always annoyed me. It makes me agree with my dad. “This is not your living room.” I hate it even more now that I had to take a complaint call for a woman who was annoyed that she was asked to leave the movie with no compensation because people kept complaining. She actually called in like she was right. She was actually trying to explain to me that she had a right to put her feet up on someone else’s chair because she paid to see the movie. Customer service was never my strong suit because was a bit of a smart ass back then… I asked her… “Were you the only person that paid? Everyone else got in free then?” She got silent. It actually took her a minute t realize that I didn’t agree with her at all. She was actually trying to tell me that the customer that complained was overreacting because she had her feet on his armrest. She said he saw her feet there and should have sat someone where else. Ugh where do people get off. She escalated on me and my boss said the same thing. Get your damn feet off of me. Paying for a movie… or a concert… only entitles you to the movie or the concert.
  3. People who go the shows with me usually are annoyed that I am not interested in sitting in the middle of the aisle. Usually because I have to go to the bathroom a lot. When the feeling hits me… I am not in the mood for having to climb over people who see you coming and make no move to try and accomodate you. (On the other side of things… They don’t want to be climbed over.) It is sad because every time a person gets up… you know they have to come back. Every time you have to get up and head down the row, you disrupt the movie for every single person in that row, behind that row, and directly in front of that row. Just sit. It’s only a couple hours.
  4. Babies…. (And I mean legit babies.) I have no issue with kids in the movie theater or their chatter especially if it is a kid’s movie. Especially since I have been in adult theaters listening to grown people talk and even be on the phone. But there is something about a crying baby in the movie that just seems out of place. And usually instead of taking the child out they try to calm the baby while everyone else is trying to watch the movie. Like they legit try to hold off… I wonder why the infant… and I stress the word infant is at the 9pm showing of Bad Boys for Life.
  5. Latecomers. It never ceased to amaze me the number of people that would call in and ask for free tickets because they showed up to the theater late. I remember vividly this gentleman calling me because he was given a free ticket for one or other of the Marvel movies… It was 2013-2014.. so take your pick but he was annoyed that his family of 5 or 6 could not sit together after they showed up 30 minutes late. (When people say things like this to me… I wonder if they have ever visited a movie theater in their lives.) He apparently wanted free tickets for his family to come another day. Where was his family you ask… still in the theater watching the movie. (That made my eyes glazed over.) Most films have about 20 minutes of trailers, so if there is traffic or you can’t park, then you have a small window of opportunity where it is still acceptable to walk in. (So just imagine how late he was.) I would never enter a movie theater well after the movie has started and climb over people who have been sitting there 45 minutes. Much less think that there should be 5-6 seats together. History fact: Alfred Hitchcock wanted no late comers to see Psycho (1960) because they would have no idea what the plot twist at the end was about.
  6. There is always a group of friends that think EVERY THING in the movie is hilarious. Are we watching the same movie? Nothing was that funny. I always wonder if they have had a few at dinner. But then theaters started serving alcohol… so… This issue is they laugh so loud and for so long that you’ve missed the next two minutes of the film.
  7. We all know the happy couples that come into the theater and spend much of the movie sucking face. Why pay that kind of money to not watch the movie at all. Seems like a waste to me. And I do not want to listen to you guys suck face either.

In General…

  1. Why are you misspelling my name and it is in the email or instant message I sent to you? Some people will say… it is no big deal but come on… Just put in a bit of effort.
  2. If someone is giving you a ride, offer gas money. No matter where you live. I had a person ask me to drive them home from work on day… Two days before payday. And she wasn’t remotely in the same direction as I was going… I went out of my way about 30 minutes. Not once did she offer to spot me any money. Gas tank was on E. We almost didn’t make it. People doing you a favor arent to be taken advantage of.
  3. It has been a while since I was in a place with an elevator … but there was something that was hard for society to grasp about letting a person off before you get on. The number of times that people almost bump into each other all day every day was interesting. Speaking of elevators… not sure why a person would get on a packed elevator and then when a door opens they don’t even move out of the way to see if someone is getting off.
  4. UGH… not wearing headphone in public. No one wants to hear your music. No one is going to be impressed by your taste. They are going to be annoyed that you are raging against the machine at the grocery store while they trying to get a pack of chicken. I remember when this woman bought her teenager (13-14) in with his bluetooth speaker into the grocery store with his speaker wailing. I am just wondering why the adult that was with him figured it was okay.
  5. Walking through people’s photos is weird. You see people at a theme park or something trying to get a picture… all of a sudden everyone needs to cross through at that moment. Doesn’t take much to go around.
  6. Standing too close to other people in line… even before covid… I never understood why (like in the grocery store) you would need to be so close that you are breathing on me. Usually to make everyone uncomfortable… I turn around and face them pretending that I am looking for something… Then all of sudden everyone understands space.
  7. Eating someone else’s food. I dont understand why this is hard. You shouldn’t be reaching into my plate for any reason. If I offer you something that is one thing. And if something is in the fridge and you didn’t purchase it… then it shouldn’t pass through your lips without talking to the person that did buy it. And no person that didn’t buy it can give permisson.
  8. Walking down the street side by side… There is always this look on the face of people who don’t feel like they should make room on the sidewalk. If I am walking by myself they really expect me to make room for them… now I just keep walking and watch the panic on their faces. It is like Russian Roulette.
  9. Spam callers… they have the nerve to be annoyed when you bombard them with questions when they are the ones that call you repeatedly. GO AWAY.
  10. People that take up two parking spaces…. there car is so precious to them but not enough for them to make a trek into the store. They still manage find two spaces close to the entrance.
  11. Delivering packages to the wrong address. Something about the post office near me that doesn’t believe I should get my stuff unless I jump through hoops. There is nothing better than trying to schedule picking up your package and everyone and their momma making it difficult to receive the stuff you paid for.
  12. Facebook requests…. for games or otherwise. No I am not interested in helping you with your farm… or whatever game your are playing. (But this was from like 10 years ago. Either people aren’t playing much on facebook or they aren’t bothering me.) The real issue I have is the business pages that “friends” want you to like and support… even though you haven’t spoken to these people in years. You only know me if you need support?
  13. Speaking of… Don’t message me with a get rich quick scheme. No, I don’t want to make more money. If you had the money, you claim you did you wouldn’t be reaching out to me. There is always someone that has a pyramid scheme they want you to get in on. And it usually someone that you haven’t heard from in years. They now remember they know you.
  14. I hate small talk. I don’t care about the weather nor do you care how I am doing… I find small talk hard to navigate. When it is over? What usually signifies the end? I could do without it. No real information is gleamed from it.
  15. Public Transportation is a bit much. It really needs its own list. But it is the same thing with the elvators… people trying to get on before people get off. It can be overcrowded but yeah you can make this run smoothly if you let people get off first.
  16. Speaking of public transportation… What is it with people that have to sit next to you.. The bus or the train is damn near empty but here comes someone hellbent on sitting next to you. Insert eyeroll.
  17. Teachers who love to point out only a handful of people passed their exams. It is a weird flex… like if you have a lecture hall for 300-350 people and only like 10 people passed the exam… doesn’t that mean it is you? That maybe the way you are teaching this isn’t as effective as you think. It is not a sign that you somehow triumphed and are smarter than everyone else in the class. (That is usually a given specifically about the the topic you are teaching).
  18. Cable companies… I went with just internet a few years ago and never looked back. Even with the streaming services that I use… it is nothing compared to that triple play that they kept pushing on people. They then upped the prices for internet… started charging people by usage (because no one wanted cable anymore.) I won’t even get into how sports channels and things keep getting cut but they keep raising the prices. You can’t even watch something for a major network without signing into a cable account. I know another streaming service that keeps upping the price but we aren’t getting more/better content. I got an email from my provider… that I was over my usage because I got new firesticks…
  19. If you borrow something, return it in the same condition as I gave it to you. Respect people’s things. Don’t loan out things that were given on lone to you. I had several family members send me things (books, cds, etc.) and it took months to get those things back. Granted, I was younger and thought it would make me friends. But there was some things that were never returned to me… (I shouldn’t have loaned it out at all.) But it really soured me on giving things out to people. I had been friends with some people for years and they were just like… “Well I don’t know where… such and such is… ” Kanye shrug and they would get annoyed when you brought it up.
  20. The Married Wives Club (This is self explanatory.)

That is all that comes to mind right now. Feel free to add to the list in the comments section. I may drop back in and add things as they come to mind.

Quarantine Post #77: Sweet Home Alabama


It was on Hulu so I decided to do a rewatch of it. Why not? I didn’t hate it the first time. Also, I enjoyed looking at Josh Lucas. No downside. I remember watching it with a few friends back in the day. Since it premiered in 2002, it has been 20 years since it hit theaters… You gotta love that a movie with this title was mostly shot in Georgia. But I mean… nothing is ever as it seems. Sweet Home Alabama was described to me as A young woman who’s reinvented herself as a New York socialite and must return home to Alabama to obtain a divorce from her husband, after seven years of separation. Through an adult lens… let’s see if it holds up… Check out the old trailer… Let us all laugh at the voiceovers that they no longer do.

The movie stars Reese Witherspoon, Josh Lucas, Patrick Dempsey, Jean Smart, and Candice Bergen. I figured I would jump right back in… I don’t think about this as a rom-com even though I enjoy this much more than I should. When I think about romcoms… this never comes up on my list because… It is really all over the place. It feels more like a returning home story more than a romcom for me anyway. So let’s get into it.

  • Okay so the movie opens up with two kids playing in the thunderstorm… Isn’t that kind of dangerous? I mean my great grandmother was from Mississippi and she didn’t even want to talk on the phone during a storm. It is a young Dakota Fanning. 10-year-olds Jake and Melanie inspect the result of lightning striking sand. (More on this later.) Jake asserts that they will be married one day. Ah young love… He just knew that she was going to be his wife. Nothing really to say here… But Melanie is dreaming. She wakes up later and is in the middle of working on an upcoming fashion show.
  • Melanie Charmichael has apparently made a huge name for herself after she landed in NYC 7 years ago. Everyone is reassuring her that she has got this. Even Andrew her very wealthy man. He is the son of the Mayor. I am not sure that I would date a politician or even someone that closely related to a politician. I say that because in the movie…. Andrew is expected to show up to events to be in his mother’s corner. The whole city is watching and sometimes more. Prior to meeting at the event though… Andrew gets Melanie chauffeured to a Tiffany’s where he proposes in the store that is only open for her. Weird. I know they are trying to make this romantic… but… for someone who is wealthy I felt he could do better… and I mean this is just before an event with your mother. It just seems like poor planning to me. And of course it all comes out at the event that she is engaged. She is now royalty of New York. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gt9hUr1Qzkc)

  • Her friend calls her wondering why she had to read the paper to hear about the engagement. Melanie tells her it just kind of happens… Well… It did. Mel also declines to come out for drinks since she is hundreds of miles away in Alabama. She’s there… because… She needs a divorce from Jake Perry. (I do have a thing for grease monkeys.) She can’t marry Andrew without it. It is funny because at first Jake doesn’t even recognize her. But when he does realize who it is… He doesn’t seem all that happy or impressed with her. I mean she really is being condescending but I would figure it would be easier to sign the divorce papers. He first tells her to go home and talk to her parents. He tries to lock her out. I can’t say that I blame him… It has been 7 years… but again… you could just sign the divorce papers. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KONvrzT7VC8) But problem is… she is his wife… so she knows where the key to the house is. And sad for him… everything is just has she left it… Poor him… (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ih_u71wMgBQ) My favorite line… “Oh, I’ve missed you but at this distance… my aim is bound to get better.” The standout moment is when they are both talking to the dog… except she calls the dog by the wrong name. “What happened to Bear?” “He died. You weren’t here.”

  • Meanwhile in NYC, Andrew’s mom is on the warpath… or so they are making it seem. Meanwhile, Kate Hennings doubts Melanie’s suitability to wed her son, whom she is grooming to run for President of the United States. Why is she the bad guy for thinking (correctly.) that Melanie is hiding something? She had her assistant try to dig up things on Mel’s family. Except they can’t find a listing for Melanie Charmichael can’t even figure out where she went to school which only makes his mom more suspicious. Back in Alabama… Jake calls the Sheriff on Mel. But that doesn’t work out the way Jake intends… at first. Wade, an old friend, is Sheriff now and when he learns that Jake and Mel are still married… he tells Jake there is nothing he can do. She has a right to be there. Until Jake starts rattling off every past crime they did together. SMH. Not cool man. SNITCHES GET STITCHES. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=37sIMsHArpU&t=3s)

  • She ends up having to call her parents to bail her out. She has to reveal that she is in town. Her dad had to pick her up from the Jailhouse. Welcome back Mel. You start to see why she has a hard relationship with her parents like anyone does. Her father talks about paying for her and Jake’s wedding which apparently she doesn’t have fond memories of. Her dad is still harping on the fact that she needs to give Jake a break for being drunk at their wedding and throwing up on her. And that he is a changed man. Sir!!!! She had to go to the reception alone because he had to sleep off the drunk and she had vomit on her dress. She tells her dad that she would appreciate not being made to be the bad guy because she was annoyed about it and for him to ask about her life too. She tells her dad that she has met someone and is happy.
  • I am just going to say she was being rude to her parents. Condescending remarks about how nothing has changed. It is revealed that she wanted them to come visit her in NY but they have refused to come even though she bought them tickets. She has managed to get into an argument with everyone she has come into contact with at this point. Jake, Dad and now her mom. It does seem like she would love her parents to at least pretend to be happy about how things in her life have come together. To say they are not seeing eye to eye is an understatement. It is like her parents don’t want to say that she is one of them now… How dare she leave for NY…? Andrew is not fairing any better. His mother insists on learning everything about Mel and wants them to have a wedding on the date she wants where she wants it. It is a bit much to book a date and insist on a location when the wedding is not about you. But wanting to know more is not a crime. She may alienate her son before they get down to the bottom of things.
  • Mel heads into town and is on the phone with her lawyer talking about how a contested divorce takes up to 18 months. My issue is… hasn’t she been gone 7 years? If she has really been sending the paperwork for a divorce for years… then… you should have done a contested divorce a while ago… or maybe not said yes to another man when you knew you were already married. Or both. I am sorry. It seems like this could have been done way better. But then it would not be a romcom. Enter Bobby Ray… yelling at her from his car. She catches up with with Bobby Ray and learns that he is gay. But he reveals that he has read about her on the internet and knows why she is in town. “I know all about the cocks in your henhouse.” He heads back to the plant where he works and Mel heads into the bank.
  • Inside the bank, Mel gets reacquainted with Dorothea who has apparently lost 110 pounds. The security guard… doesn’t seem to be all that impressed with Melanie. He hurries to take his lunchbreak. Dorothea lets it slip that she knows all about Mel’s fight with Jake. Since she and Wade are married and you know (pillow talk). When Mel tells her she needs to make a withdrawal… Dorothea asks… if she wants to make it from her…. *clears throat* joint account. She still has a joint account with Jake. Now that is some sisterhood for you. Since she is still married… she is entitled to withdraw the money from their account. Again… Jake dude… it would have been easier to just sign the divorce papers. Because I would be so annoyed if I had a lump sum in my account and someone I ain’t even talked to in years flew into town and was allowed to withdraw it.
  • Jake returns home in his plane… (Why does he have a plane? Like where do you go that you need to fly in…? I have questions.) He is greeted by Mel who is posing as the little homemaker. And she has changed almost everything in his house….. Their house?? I just… She has even conned poor Bryant. Jake initially is annoyed but not enough… thinking that she has spent her own money…. When she responds that she prefers to think that it is their money… He almost loses his mind. She tells him she will give him the money back if he just signs the papers… But concedes to do so… He mentions that he knows that she is pushing for a divorce because she is trying to get remarried. Oddly, she seems shocked by this… Why? Everyone has been telling her that they have been reading about her. And I get my favorite line in the whole movie… “Honey. Just cause I talk slow don’t mean I’m stupid.” There seems to be a bit of a loving moment before Jake up and leaves without signing the paperwork… He wants to have is lawyer look at it before he signs… (Fair. Again… this could have been taken care of years ago.) Why does he feel the to walk around shirtless? I mean yeah it is his house… but he knows what he is doing… LOL. Mel is annoyed that he plan doesn’t work… Jake doesn’t seem all that upset about the missing money. I mean he did leave her name on the account.

  • Next scene… Can we just laugh at her ringtone? Shoutout to Nokia… Everyone had a time in the early 2000’s. Mel decides to head out after Jake and following him out on a date. Weird… mostly… because nothing good could come from this… She walks in and is immediately greeted by her mother in law whom she tells she is trying to divorce her son. Jake’s mom seems hella cool… but it is just the start of an outing that screams this is a bad idea. She meets another friend… who has her baby with her…. at a bar. (I don’t know anyone that would do this… like they tried to pass it off as normal for where they are at… but… no. Because no one is asking why the child is there.) Friend talks about how she has 3 other children at home… but because she is still breastfeeding she lugs the baby around with her. (But again… it is a bar. I am sure babysitting could have been arranged. Like get some me time sis… Pump and go and live your best life…. ) She compliments Mel on her clothes to which Mel responds that she made it. Friend claims she would never get away with spending that kind of money on clothes. (I get it.)

  • Mel “bumps” into Jake on his date. (Still think it is a terrible idea.) She introduces herself as Jake’s wife. It is not a lie but not entirely true… but she is annoyed that Jake left without signing the divorce papers. I would not be telling a stranger all my business in a bar. But she can’t wait to annoy him and show off her new ring. Sis go home. She doesn’t but I knew that. Jake sends his date… (Star.) to get them more drinks. Star seems a bit in the clouds. LOL. Jake plans to ignore Mel and Mel plans on being as obnoxious as she can be with the power of alcohol. She yells something about Jake liking to be embarrassed in front of his friends. Bobby Ray who is there points out that they were her friends too. But she ignores him. Although… when the two others joing and crush her in a Melanie sandwich… Everyone looks at her as if she is being difficult by hating it. Although… Bobby Ray does crack a joke at her expense…. like friends do. But it drives her to drink more and be rude to everyone.

  • Jake and Mel have it out for everyone to see… Not a thing that I would do in this situation. He is asked if he is actually going to divorce her… (His date is still there… I would not continue to be there with a married man. But I guess she figures that Mel no longer wants him so…. ) He claimes that she waited 7 years… she can wait another few days. (What is the point in dragging it out? I know the answer but it still seems odd.) He really doesn’t seem to perturbed by Mel even though she is getting on my last nerve at least until she blurts out that Jake got her pregnant the night of the state championship. (Again… not a thing I would blurt out to a bar full of people.) Then she turns and outs Bobby Ray. She made me want to punch her. Drunk or not… (Bobby Ray is drunk too but she really takes it too far.) All her friends are less than stoked by her joke… Jake ends his date and drags her out of the bar. Even when he drags her out of the bar… she tells Jake, he bought this on herself and that she is better than them. (See? Punch! There is something about how he throws her in the truck that makes me laugh. She wanted to drive home but she is way to loose for that.) He takes her to her parents house… Star follows in her car…. and Melanie throw up in his truck. He leaves the divorce paperwork on her pillow signed. (The way she was snoring too.)

  • She is like a half dead the next day. I do not miss that. AT ALL. Her father is off to a Civil War reenactment. Mel gets herself together to visit Jake… AGAIN… unannounced… again. She comes to tell him that she has returned his money. Since that was the deal. He did sign the papers. He does appreciate that… since he has written several checks. (What makes me laugh… is he takes a bone and throws it into the lake… and the dog jumps in after it and isn’t seen for a while. “Can he swim?” “It doesn’t look like it.” LOL. He eventually resurfaces which calms Melanie down. Jake doesn’t seem at all bothered. It is his dog.) Jake reveals that he is going to leave the house the way it is now that she has changed it. It should make it easier to sell. Mel is shocked that he is moving… Why? You moved. He offers to take her on a ride and everything. He has something to show her but she declines. (He is real mysterious about it though.) She is on her apology tour. So she starts with Jake but she has a lot of rounds to make. (Let’s not even bring up all the people in NYC that she has lied to. ) She heads to the post office to mail off her divorce paperwork and she inquires about Bobby Ray. She is told that he goes over to the Charmichael residence on the weekend. She heads over to apologize… and it is a weird exchange where not much is said. (I refuse to talk about the anvils.) But there is an understanding in the end. So much so that Bobby Ray helps her lie Kate’s Assistant… he is sent there to gather information on Melanie’s background. Bobby Ray backs up her pretense that she is a relative and the family mansion is her childhood home. They give him a tour of the home… but my question is… who just asks to take a quick look at someone’s home.

  • During an outdoor festival, she manages to apologize to her friends especially Lurlynn… I do think they forgave her too easy but we still have about 45 minutes left in the movie we had to move along. Lurlynn is with her kids… getting them fed and taking them around the carnival. I know from hanging with my nephews and nieces that food times can always be hectic especially if you are out about. Mel sticks around with her and her kids and finds out that after she split with Jake, he had followed her to New York to win her back. Intimidated by the city and her success, he returned home to make something of himself first. It becomes increasingly obvious that there was a reason he kept refusing to sign the papers… Jake shows up with Bobby Ray and no one cares that he is gay. There is some talk about the glasses used at the carnival… everyone tries to get Jake to talk about it… But he is so hush mouth about it. Then it is time to dance… Jake dances with Lurlynn as she claims Clinton can’t dance. Mel start out dancing with Clinton but she ends up getting left with Jake as Mel claims that Clinton is not half bad causing Lurlynn to take him back. Mel and Jake don’t dance together. He wants to…. She wants to but doesn’t.

  • Since she doesn’t dance with Jake… she ends up at the hound cemetery talking to Bear. (Bear is the dog she and Jake had that passed when she left.) She has a heart to heart with Bear… and Jake listens in… Then they have a heart to heart about their relationship that once was. She admits that she is happy in NYC but she remembers why she loved being in Alabama with them. Jake says… It doesn’t have to be one or the other. You can do more than on thing.)They then branch into a conversation… about the baby that they lost. Jake asks “Do you wonder what would have happened if we hadn’t gotten pregnant?” I think that he had a life pictured in his mind that Melanie always fit into… but what younger people don’t realize is that life happens and people grow and change. Their wants change. Maybe he didn’t realize that while she may have wanted kids… she may have wanted to see what life was like first and try her hand at something? Mel admits that she was sad at the miscarriage but also relieved which Jake seems to understand. But it’s also what made her up and leave. Jake tells her he is proud of her… and apologizes for not accompanying her to the reception at their wedding… (Take that Dad!!) There is a lot of kissing that occurs. But she is with someone else… and Jake puts a stop to the kiss and tells her to go home.

  • The next day… as she is trying to leave… her and her mother are having it out about Jake. Her mother doesn’t want her to change her mind… She wants Mel go back to NY and not look back. She describes Jake as quicksand. Mel does point out that Jake has done nothing wrong and that she is leaving… (literally in the process) and that she is about to marry someone else. Her mother reveals that she doesn’t Mel to turn out like her… She also tells Mel to say goodbye to her father… who is again on the battlefield doing a reenactment. Mel is left trying to sift through all the “dead bodies” to find her father. In the meantime… Andrew shows up in town… to surprise Mel and runs into Jake… Andrew is at the Charmichael’s because he thinks that is where Mel lives… And Jake is confused as to why he is there if he is looking for Melanie. (He initially thinks Andrew is there to see Bobby Ray lol.) Poor Bobby Ray answers the door. He’s torn between having to lie… like he did for Mel before… because Jake is standing there… but Jake falls in line with the lie and offers to take Andrew to Mel which Bobby Ray wants to protest. Check it out: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HbwcQTJcmWA&t=28s) In Jake’s truck, Andrew asks about Melanie Smooter… not realizing they are talking about the same person. Leave it to Jake to weave a tale. When asked what happened to her… Jake responds with… “Well… you know… She wound up pregnant and married some loser right out of high school.”

  • Mel is unprepared for when both her husband and husband to be show up. She looks like a deer in headlights. When she asks “What are you doing here?” Andrew assumes she is talking to him but it is Jake that answers. He just steps right over any pretenses… like Andrew isn’t even there. I would feel bad for her… BUT YOU LIED TO EVERYONE SIS!!! Jake calls her out in front of her man… and he is standing there clueless. When he learns her true background and that Jake was her husband, he angrily leaves. I mean who wouldn’t everything about your relationship is a lie. She ends up back at home with her mom. Andrew does return…. I can’t imagine why… saying he still wants to marry Melanie, and the wedding is immediately set in motion. They decide that the wedding should happen in Alabama and not in NYC. Because her parents… still don’t want to head up north… Melanie’s New York friends arrive for the event. Andrew’s mom… who they are still trying to make seem like the bad guy… because she knew Melanie was a liar. Andrew points out that she was just embarrassed of her past… and wanted to start over and he can get why a person would be embarrassed of their parents. Andrew’s mom takes over the wedding planning and Mel spends her time trying to call Jake who does not answer. Until he finally unplugs the phone completely.

  • Mel takes her friends out to a new place called Deep South Glass. Mel spots Jakes plane outside. Her friends are confused as to what it means. But it finally dawns on Mel what Jake wanted to show her. He owns the place and is the artist. She explains to her friends that sand is used to make glasses… and they are surprised. Here is where all the questions about the glasses are answered from earlier in the film. Enter Jake. Now I am not sure what she thinks is supposed to happen here. Like you pushed him to divorce you… He did… and you are getting married…. everyone in town knows it. Poor Jake… She just won’t go home. He dodges her statement of calling him repeatedly and gabs about the place. He just moves along… Meanwhile… someone is looking around town for Melanie. But no one wants to tell him where she is. And Andrew’s mother is in town to meet Mel’s parents… What is with her dad and this chair???

  • Jake has words with his mom… who pulls up as he is trying to make his escape. I guess she wants him to do something. But she came here to ask for a divorce. What do you want from the man…? He says she made her decision… and he is not interesting in heading to the wedding to watch her marry someone else. I remember saying that about a person I used to know back in the day. He is heading out into the storm. Meanwhile the wedding starts… Her mother basically tells her to forget about Jake because Andrew can “get you a life that we never dreamed of.” Isn’t Mel doing great on her own? But the nuptials are interrupted when a man comes running in to the ceremony screaming for Mel. He is revealed to be the lawyer… and points out that she sent in the paperwork with Jake’s signature and not her own. So.. she can’t get married… because… AGAIN…. She is still married. (EYEROLL!) Jake’s mom looks pleased with herself… and the storm is rolling in… Let’s get these papers signed girl… But seriously… what do you really think happened LOL. Andrew is left at the alter because she doesn’t sign the papers. She apologizes but his mother is not trying to hear that. They spent a lot of money on this wedding. Her father seems stoked. Her mother.. not so much… she wasn’t a fan of Jake. Leave it to Andrew’s mother to start mouthing off… But again….I don’t think she is wrong. She lied about who she was… and now she wants to stay married. She gets punched because she was rude to Mel’s mother… But she isn’t the villian here.

  • She sets off to find her old new husband… in the rain…. Let me tell you all how I hate thunderstorms. Melanie finds Jake at the beach planting lightning rods in the sand during a rainstorm to create more glass sculptures. He asks her where her husband is…. and she says they are still married. And he rightly so looks confused. She moves on past that… and asks what I have been wanting to know all movie… “Why didn’t you tell me you came to New York?” He tells her he wanted to make something of himself. But why should it be that easy… The ball is back in her court when he points out that she doesn’t really know what she wants… (Whether he actually believes that is up for debate…We’ve known all movie that he didn’t want to be divorced… but I will say… it is a blow to not be chosen until the last second. Although… one could argue… that is Andrew left with the short stick.) Maybe they had their chance… (does anyone in these movies get told no… when they make a grand gesture.) Calling him a stubborn ass seems to do the trick though… So I mean it if works… go for it. Everyone in the movies in the early 2000’s has a rain scene kiss…. So this is no different. Wade has to come escort them to their reception… That would have been Andrew’s reception… they finally have their first dance as husband and wife. Check out the scene here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8j-fERuyfXg) A mid-credits sequence shows that they have a baby daughter, Melanie continues to thrive as a designer, and Jake opens a “Deep South Glass” franchise in New York. Andrew is engaged to a girl named Erin Vanderbilt. Her Parents also come to visit NY. Take a look at the cut scene here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5IGTESK1PqM&t=4s)

So there are things that I still enjoy about it… It is still a great rainy day movie. I still enjoy Josh Lucas. But I mean… like with any romcom… this seems like the long way around… but no one watches movies… (Romcoms especially…) for realism.

Quarantine Post #76: Just Wright (2010)


It is that time of the year I can’t stand again. Valentine’s day 2022. With the season comes a number of cheesy rom coms. And trust me. This is not any different. I have an affinity for all things cheesy. I routinely read in the sports romance genre so this was up my alley. I remember going to the movies a few times to see this movie. Of course, this was a time when I spent a lot of money at the movies. But now I can watch for free since it is on Hulu. Just Wright is a 2010 American romantic comedy starring Queen Latifah and Common. The film tells the story of a physical therapist, Leslie Wright, who falls in love with a professional basketball player, Scott McKnight. Check out the trailer:

We see Leslie, a physical therapist, and a die-hard basketball/Nets fan, as she heads to work and then out for her date. The date seems to be going well. When it is over though, dude gives her the brush off. “You are so cool… We should just be friends.” Been there heard that and it is corny every time. Dude at least adds a “You da bomb.com” to round things out. Beware when they start out saying that YOU ARE SUCH AN AMAZING WOMAN. He even went with the tried and true… Any man would be lucky to have you but I am just not ready… Why are you out on dates? This seems like a lot of work just to backtrack. And the other thing is… All Leslie said was “Hey next time we should catch a Nets game.” Not that she would be buying her wedding dress tomorrow. I remember in high school when a group of girls came up to me and asked me to teach them about football. I had to let them down easy because if you think sports is the answer… I am here to tell you IT IS NOT.

Same sis… Same… been there heard that.

Leslie returns home to her newly purchased fixer-upper that she is sharing with her God Sister Morgan. When I say sharing, I am trying to be nice because Morgan is actually crashing there. No job, No money, no intentions of doing anything other than partying and trying to become someone’s trophy wife. Let me go ahead and say I have no issues if that is the path you want to choose in life. But do it on your own nickel… Morgan has a whole game plan for which men to go after based on their contracts.

Leslie has Nets tickets and is excited for the game and for some reason she is taking Morgan. Morgan doesn’t seem to be interested in the game. The kicker for this though is the way Leslie’s mom sides with Morgan over her daughter. They both seem to think that Leslie is not dressed appropriately enough to “catch a man.” She is not doing enough in her Nets jersey. They are going to a basketball game to sit in the stands. I never understood it… I have been told that on a few occasions myself. I was told not to wear a concert tee to a concert… That I would be severely underdressed. I was one of the few people that the headliner shouted out. I am just saying… If I had worn a too-tight dress… I might have been overlooked.

Doesn’t her mother seem too excited about this dress? Made no sense to me.

So here is where we start talking about random points in the movie and my thoughts… So let’s get to it.

  • Leslie is at the Nets game watching Scott Mcknight dominate. It seems like she is sitting in the visitor seats… Which can be a dangerous game. Sports fandom is the fandom of all fandoms. People get weird especially when their team doesn’t win. But alas this is a movie. She is acting a fool cheering on her guys… but Morgan is more interested in the players wives club than the game. (Insert Eyeroll). Even Leslie knows that she has to make a quick exit before the visitors get rowdy. Scott gets questioned about his upcoming free agency but he tells his agent that he wants to stay where he is at.

  • Morgan and her brat pack (all super overdressed for a basketball game) are trying to figure out a way into Scott Mcknight’s party. It is a birthday party… I wanted to ask why they thought they would get in… but then again… They ask Leslie but you can tell that they don’t really want her to go. Lucky her… because where else would you bump into a man worth millions…. but at a gas station? This man has no idea where the button is to fill up his car… WHY? WHO BOUGHT THIS CAR????????
  • At first, I thought this interaction was weird. There was a time when I felt that most people who had money, had personal shoppers and whatnot. But after talking with a few family members… I found that up North it is regular occurrence to see people (Celebrities…?) just out an about. Not everyone employs people to do mundane tasks. I still think people are strange so it can be dangerous. But if you have been reading my blog up to this point you know that I am into hockey. On hockey twitter, there are a lot of pictures that people get with players who are on their way to and from games or practice. I am seeing that it is a regular occurance. But Leslie seems at ease with helping him figure out where the gas tank is and they talk Jazz before he helps her into her car. Or he tries to…since her car door is ridiculous.

  • Of course, it is Leslie who gets the invite to the Scott Mcknight birthday bash. From Scott himself. Take that Morgan!!! Morgan, on the other hand, was out all night… but has no results. So much for all the pull she thinks she has. She killed me with that line about not eating in public.Morgan says she had no luck and that she will be sitting home on Saturday night with Leslie… Sis, Leslie won’t be at home. Now… I am not sure that I would have invited Morgan to the party. Leslie seems to have plenty of friends who also enjoy basketball and don’t have the habit of trying to outshine her. But she decided to tell Morgan and invite her instead. She will be sorry and to some degree, I was annoyed because she set herself up for what happens next. Morgan does ask if she is interested in Scott… Leslie should have just told the truth.

  • Here is a scene that annoyed the heck out of me. Morgan and Leslie are getting ready for the birthday party. I reiterate… Leslie was the one that was invited… in her NETS jersey… Morgan is doing the makeup and her mother comes in immediately spouting off about how they were both going to catch men at the party. You can see it more than anywhere else why she and her mother are not close at all. Is there something with older people where they start talking to you about marriage as if you are broken otherwise. Especially when you get over 30… It seems that all her mother talks about is bagging/catching a man. Leslie is a person that can support herself… for some reason that is lost on her mother in favor of Morgan… whose BMW was repossessed. I am eyerolling again BTW. She has some family earrings that instead of giving to Leslie she gives to Morgan. I am just blown away. Leslie excuses herself to get dressed to which Morgan tells her she needs to get dressed up. (When has she not know how to dress for the occasion…?) I digress. Mom was not in the right corner. I didn’t like her for the rest of the movie. And I can see why Leslie spends more time with her father. Her father spends time prepping the ride for her. Now that is a helpful parent. Morgan complaining in the background got me too… “I was not about to go in that Mustang…” Ma’am where is your car?

  • At the party, Morgan makes her rounds. I have to give the girl props. She knows how to scope out eligible men… She could have made a career out of it if she put her mind to it. Scott makes the beeline for Leslie at the bar and they seem to be hitting it off. He even remembered her name. I mean… they already had a meetcute. He compliments her on her dress. TAKE THAT MOM! LOL. He is actually interested what she has to say. She takes about her father being a sort of handy man. (It needs just a tweak…) Leave it to Morgan to ruin things. She swirls in like a tornado spouting gibberish about charity events… (Something Leslie told her about Scott the night before) and how they have to leave. LEAVE?? LEAVE??? We just got here. I got all the way dressed up… Are you crazy? But from that moment on… Leslie isn’t even there. And Scott who I loved right up until this moment falls for it… Hook Line and Sinker. Nonsense about how she is not interested in dating a ballplayer. He asks how to contact Morgan right away… and she hits him with one line after another. And then she makes Leslie take her home. BUM.

  • Paula Patton describes Morgan’s character in the best way though… Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xFE3-f-3WXk)
  • Morgan wasn’t wrong when she said that he would be reaching out to her. Leslie is on her way out to work. Her and her father have a real heart to heart about dating and where her life is headed. It was authentic. But who else should show up but Scott Mcknight himself. (Creepy? Weird? Sexy? All of the above maybe? I don’t know.) He shows up to Leslie’s house… to ask about Morgan. Does he get a point for initiative…? I guess. Leslie lets him in and her father is obviously star struck. He tries to hand Scott the drill and then proceeds to shake his hand off. The window popping out is the funny part because I want to know what her father was doing with that drill Morgan finally comes down after putting her whole face on… When he starts gushing over Morgan… Leslie leaves… And I know that feeling… When confessing that he wants to date her… he says something about how Leslie can vouch for him… Sir you met Leslie one other time. But Morgan has him right where she wants him. And Scott seems happy to be her prey. Cue the montage. Morgan is living her best life. Leslie even sees them in a magazine together while working.

  • Leslie is invited to a party where she reconnects with Morgan for the first time in 3 months. (Has she not been inviting Leslie to games? No tickets? Morgan shows Leslie around the house. Morgan talks about sticking close to her man because the women in these streets can be and are treacherous. I guess she would know. (I do enjoy her butterfly dress here though.) She tells Leslie that they are planning to put a nursery in the house. She wants to have baby right away. Leslie points out that she has only known Scott for a few months. (90 days… just a work probationary period.) That doesn’t stop Scott from proposing to Morgan in front of everyone at the party. Morgan doesn’t even let him get the question out before she says yes. Leslie seems shocked… but happy for Morgan. Scott’s mother doesn’t seem all that happy about it. He tells his mom that Morgan is DIFFERENT… I want to know what criteria he used to make that statement because I didn’t see it.

  • All Star Game… I have heard fans complain about the ASG in both basketball and hockey complain that to have the weekend things go on in the middle of the season is silly. Several people that I have spoken to in the past say that they do not want their star players hurt in a weekend that amounts to nothing. Taking their respective team out of the running for the big game. Well… I can see it… but people can get hurt doing anything. The game is in the 4th quarter with less than 10 minutes left. And I would figure that people not really going hard in the paint. But Scott does tear a ligament in his knee which means… he may not be ready to play again this season. (There was a guy on my favorite hockey team that tear a ligament in his knee in the preseason… and he is out until next year.) Makes it hard for contract renegotiations.
  • You would think that Morgan comes through for her man… (No, we didn’t. I am kidding. No one thought that.) Laying in the hospital bed, everyone in Scott’s life hears that he may not be back on the court any time soon. Torn PCL. The doctor thinks that he won’t be back, even with a bit of luck before training camp. His agent blurts out that they need him by playoffs. Which I think is pretty lofty. I had a brother with a knee injury and he was a person that never felt any pain but he was down bad on the pain. You can already tell that Morgan is not feeling it. When the trainer informs everyone that Scott’s career in the NBA could be over… That is a nail in the coffin. Now… he has a knee injury not a life threatening injury. He is not in a vegetative state. So she is being weird. Even men who has suffered career ending injuries are able to do other things and make money. But Morgan is about herself so there is that. Morgan doesn’t like the woman that the team reccommended for PT. Bella Goldsmith who is supposed to be the best in the league. Why wouldn’t you want your man with the best in the league…? Well… we know why. She brings in Leslie instead. Now Leslie has taken a sabbatical from work. But as my friend pointed out… How insulting is it that you bring me in to worth with your husband to be because you don’t think he will find me attractive? ou also find out that no one likes Morgan. Not his mom, not Leslie’s friends… Doesn’t that mean it is you?
  • Scott seems optimistic even though he is hobbling along with his crutches. He is cool with Leslie coming in and doing the work. He seems open to the treatment. Everything is good. When Leslie first arrives, she gives a mini lecture on him not having his leg elevated and not icing when his is resting. He is not even perturbed by that. Even his mom seems to like Leslie. Apparenty he can’t handle a little deep tissue. But O will say that after seeing my brother deal with his knee injury, I pray that I don’t have to deal with that. So he may not be overreacting. Morgan seems concerned but it is doesn’t seem to be for Scott especially when he falls off the table. Side note: Can I just shout out how great his athletic room is. Leslie meets her friend for lunch. Leslie’s friend Paul doesn’t like Leslie either… Morgan spends the lunch complaining about how Scott doesn’t want to go out… I mean… he is on crutches. LOL. Even Leslie is wondering why she is complaining about spending time with her man. Morgan spends her days spending his money. Scott seems cool until he wakes up to a Dear John letter. (Morgan has left him high and dry. She doesn’t even warn Leslie about leaving. Just went back to Leslie’s house without so much as a text message.

  • Leslie is blindsided by Scott’s mom demanding to know if she is going to up and leave too. Mom has venom in her vains. And that only annoys me more than anything. You up and bounced and got this woman giving me attitude about something I didn’t do. And then you just come back to my house. Morgan gives a half ass apology as she is primping to do who knows what… I can bet it wasn’t getting a job. She claims she left Scott because she “Wants to be somebody…” but not of her own accord. Just trying to latch on to someone who is somebody it sounds like. For me… it is even worse because she took this guy from Leslie who really liked him. Leslie tries soft hands when she returns to help Scott. But he just tells to mind her own business. It is the first time we see Scott be rude… (Well sort of.) She tries bringing him food but he is not interested in eating or leaving his room. So after a few days, Leslie tries a different approach. Throwing ice on your boss is… Different… Not an approach that I would take but you know. It gets him out of bed and the house. He was rude about her car though lol.

  • She takes him to a park… Rucker Park… AKA the Rucker. The kids are hooping. Sometimes, it is about refocusing on what is really important. Leslie tells Scott that a lot of talented players pass through the Rucker and never get into the NBA or even a shot at getting in the NBA. The kids spot Scott and everyone wants him back in the league. The drive has been has been reunited. It is time to go to work. Let’s do it. Cue the movie montage. I am here for it. I love a good movie montage.

  • While training… Scott tells her that she should bring her talents to NBA. Especially since Leslie loves basketball and PT. He’s the one that sees the potential for her to make big bucks… and maybe he wants her to stay close. When she thinks about spending time around hot, sweaty men. For some reason… that is not what he meant. LOL. Now… he is her employer… so it is nice that he asks about her interests and about her car. Her car needs a lot of TLC. But there is a reason for that. Eleanor, as her car is called, was given to her by her grandfather after he died. Scott was me and I am he when he said: “Eleanor? That hoopdee has a name?” She reveals that she wants to keep the dent in the driver’s side door because her grandfather had a dimple on his left side as well. It then dawns on Scott why she never got the door fixed. Next they are walking in the rain. I am not for that. I do not like rain… I may feel differently if I was living the good life in NYC. But I do want someone to walk with under an umbrella. Not to mention someone to food truck with me as they do. Scott tells her that he was picked on in high school because he had thick glasses. Leslie on the other hand was popular because she got along with everyone.

  • After the training and food trucks… there is cards and wine. Scott reveals that he doesn’t know his father. And he can’t seem to figure her out. It is almost creepy but cute. He hasn’t seen her going out after work, or texting. Leslie missed the opportunity when he asked why she’s single. I would have said something like “Because Morgan is what men prefer.” However, that comes off as bitter but it is what it is. He does ask what she is waiting for… I mean she met a man at a gas station and he only came to her house to find out about her friend… but it’s all good. She keeps sneezing… see this is why I don’t go out in the rain… (For all I know the rain scene could have been weeks or months before but no matter.) Scott thinks she is coming down with something but Leslie insists that she is fine and doesn’t get sick. Famous last words. Cut to Leslie laying on the couch in the family room with Scott bringing her soup… (Is it canned soup? Did he buy it? Did he make? There are questions that need answers. Another not important thing that I long to know.) He decides that he is going to take care of her… He stays with her on the couch until she passes out. He never misses a chance to say “Bless you” and I love it. They fall asleep together on the couch until the infomercials come on. CUTE!
  • Mr. Piano man… Now when Leslie asked Morgan about a door. Morgan claimed she didn’t know and that it was Scott’s secret room. Could you live in a house where there is a room that your spouse goes into and you have no idea what is going on in there? I couldn’t. Leslie stumbles on to Scott playing his piano. (He’s both impressed by her knowledge of Jazz (since she knows the song he is playing) and by her vocal abilities. But when asked why she is up at 3 am… she flips it back on him. He reveals that he is concerned that he has lost it. All the what ifs come out? Then the speech comes… “Basketball is what you do, not who you are.” She knows that when it comes time to show and prove he will be able to deliver. And she is confident in her work. They bond over her feel good remedy (Marshmallow and chocolate chip cookie sandwiches.) Goodness do I hate marshmallows. I will have to take their word for it.

  • We head back to the IZOD center. It is Scott’s first game back against the Miami Heat. Dwayne Wade greets Scott saying that he is glad to see him overcome his knee injury. Wade tells Scott that he is glad he is back because he wants Scott to be there to see him dominate. The Nets need to win this game to get into the playoffs. In the first few minutes of the game, we can see that Scott is not himself. He is coming undone. He is missing shots he would normally make and he being outdone. I would call it a self fulfilling prophecy. He thought this up and now it is happening. Wade is outrunning him all over the court. The Nets call a timeout and Scott gets a bit emotional. (But pulling your chair away from the team and snatching towels from people is a bit much… I am even going to say… Childish… ) Even the music is somber. But you can feel everyone in the room including Scott is doubting if he can do it. Here comes Leslie for the pep talk. You aren’t hurt anymore. Believe in yourself. (Siri, play Eye of the Tiger.) But I mean, in his defense… I can understand a person being worried that he is back too soon and about his health Also, anyone would be a bit rusty after having all that time off. As of right now… my hockey team had a two week break and the game they just had the other day was rusty. Anyway Scott becomes his former self… and even manages to hit the game winner at the buzzer.
  • Scott has everyone clamoring after him on his way to his post game interview. But it is Leslie he makes time for. That was a long hug. Longer than 5 Mississippi’s. He gives her a proper thank you… She was the only one to never doubt him. All of the media and fans are back in his corner but… those people are finicky at best. He asks her out to dinner and she tells him she is not one of those salad eating chicks. His mother also chimes in that she likes Leslie… It may have been hard to get back on her good side given what Morgan did. Next is the Queen coming down the stairs in her awesome gown. It is the right color. I could rock. I don’t know where yet but I could rock it. Scott is looking real debonair in his tux… and where do they go…? Jazz Club… I should have seen that coming. But it is just them… So he rented out the space and had a jazz concert put on just for them. I love it. He had Terence Blanchard come and do his thing. And see it does talk millions of dollars to pay attention to what a person is saying to you and get them something they enjoy. But the kicker is her car. She really deserved an upgraded whip. But with buying a new house a lot of things are going to be put on the back burner. Scott presents Leslie with her grandfather’s classic Mustang which he has had remodelled and refurbished, but also paid extra to leave a dent in the side door intact because it is what she wanted. He did a damn good job. She is so overwhelmed that she kisses him and he goes with it. They end up spending the night together…

  • Leslie wakes up alone in Scott’s bed. He went out for a jog giving Leslie time to process what is happening for herself. I would be giddy too. But before we can get too giddy… there is a knock at the door and who should be there but our friend Morgan. She only has one thing on her mind. And Leslie who has been patient with Morgan all this time doesn’t look happy to see her. Morgan just kind of barges in. Doesn’t even ask. Just walks right in. Leslie tells her that Scott is out… Morgan doesn’t let that stop her saying she wants to wait. She and Leslie shared a stilted hug before Scott walks in and looks like a deer in headlights. I am sure he figured that Morgan would not have the audacity to show up again… but that really shows how much he actually knew about her. Leslie excuses herself because it is definitely what I would have done. Why stick around and watch Morgan work her magic a second time? Scott lets her spill her guts about how she has abandonment issues and is working through thing. Her mom died when she was 3 and blah blah blah… (You should hear me gagging.) Why didn’t Leslie slam the door in her face? I mean it isn’t her house but I get it. Leslie is listening in… and hears that he is falling for the nonsense.

  • She tells him that she loves him and that they are meant to be together. He does say that she should go… But she stayed longer than I think she should have. Some people need that closure… But I have gotten used to not getting it so… I don’t need an explanation as to why people do things anymore. He comes to find Leslie packing. And getting ready to bounce. She moves to slow. Because I would have slipped out the back or something. (I don’t do confrontation well lol.) But here he comes asking pointless questions… “Leslie, why are you leaving?” SEE??? She could have avoided this and been in her ride on the way home… (However, he does know where she lives…so you know… It may just be a pipedream.) He immediately starts talking about he may to see where things are going with Morgan. Okay… so you have chosen her over me… (again…) and you are asking me why I am leaving…? Sir, why are you here? Like dis he think that she should continue living there even though he is all healed while he dated Morgan again??? Can you hear my eyes rolling?

  • Leslie returns to her home… Morgan is not there obviously and she paints her anger away. She returns to her job and things are back to normal for as long as they can be in a rom com. Her friends support the idea of her becoming an athletic trainer… they are all for it (especially if they get courtside tickets.) Cut to Morgan and Scott at a sushi bar and she jumps right back into ordering the most expensive things on the menu. You would think that she would put the pause on that and tread lightly but no. When he shoots her down and tells her it is way to premature… she actually asks him if he is serious about being back together. Sis has audacity if nothing else. This man ain’t serious because he was to go slow after you left him high and dry? Come on sis. Even in the house, when Scott is playing the piano… It cuts between both Leslie and Scott and both of them seem miserable. Leave it to Morgan to put the final nail in the coffin too… She doesn’t care that he plays the piano… she doesn’t even feign interests. She shuts the door on him.

  • So… it seems Scott may have mentioned Leslie’s name to a few people as the reason he is back so soon. And she has gotten job offers from the Phoenix Suns, the Philadelphia 76er’s and her New Jersey Nets… (This movie is so old… because I do not know a lot about basketball… but I know the Nets moved to Brooklyn. Plus most of the NBA starts in the movie have retired. LOL.) No matter how much I like a sport… picking up and moving across the country is a lot. So the Suns move to the bottom of the list… With Scott playing for the Nets… they are out too. (Listen… I get it. I prefer not to run into ex flames where I get my money.) So that means it is off to Philly… Scott finds out because his agents has been hired by Leslie. Scotts gets filled in about Leslie turning down the Nets. (Doesn’t that seem unethical? A conflict of interest. Well he doesn’t know they had a thing going on… but that is all the more reason for him to keep his mouth closed.) Leslie is packing to head to Philly, as her mother gives her the third degree… Correctly assessing that she is running from something since she didn’t take the job with the Nets. Her parents try to cheer her up by saying that he is obviously not the one for her… but I mean her mother still rings hollow to me.
  • Scott is being interviewed and when asked how he came back so quickly, he gives props to Leslie… and it quickly turns into a gushing sessions. Leslie was a lot more than a PT and makes sure the world knows that. Ain’t that sweet? At the mention of Leslie’s name… everyone she knows turns up the TV. So…. who is the only person that doesn’t hear it… LESLIE. I legit thought this was what was going to happen when I first watched this. I was not prepared to Scott to realize how he felt about Leslie at that exact moment and just walk off. He took the mic off and everything. I would have figured that he could have stayed and done the interview but dramatic effect and all that. My favorite part is when he tells Morgan… “This isn’t going to work out…” Morgan does point him in the right direction though. Sending him to Philly.
  • Leslie finishes her tour of the 76er’s facilty. And she tells Andre to give her a few days so that she can make up her mind. She heads out into the bright, sunshiny day and everything is fine until she rounds the corner and sees Scott there. SECURITY… WHO LET THIS MAN IN HERE???????? Leslie gives it to him with both barrells which I enjoy. Do you think she came out to Philly because she wanted to be close to you? I have questions… “No, I don’t want to see you.” He is now willing to leave the Nets to be close to her… and sometimes it is too little too late. Leslie tells him the truth… and she better than me. “What you know now is the woman you were going to marry is not the woman you thought she was…” I repeat he only knew her for 3 months. People risk all, all the time, for the wrong ones. “So now here you are looking for plan B. You want your friend who was there for you when the chips were down?” I mean she’s not wrong. Scott turns on the charm like a jerk and how can resist him in that suit. I remember when my mom said to me… It isn’t a crime for a person not realize or be ready just because you are. People aren’t always great and don’t always do great things. He has to say the title of the movie though… Cheesiness at its finest. Leslie decides to call and get a job with the Nets. The ending scene is at a basketball game the next season. She is still inviting Morgan and I still think ANY of her other friends would be great. We hear that Scott and Leslie have gotten married and everything is tied up an a neat little Bow.

I still enjoy this movie even though Scott gets on my nerves. (You would think it would be Morgan… But she is who she is… and really what you see is what you get.) Like how did you let this woman come back into your life after showing her true colors. Even if he didn’t get with Leslie… I really expected more from him as an intelligent man. She didn’t want to be in the house with you and didn’t even bother to tell you face to face… she just bounced. But the minute she showed back up, he went to telling Leslie… “well, this is the woman I was going to spend the rest of my life with…” She was that when she left you. She was in fact freshly engaged. But I always forgive Scott at the end of each movie… so you know it is what it is.

Quarantine Post #75: Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper


Nothing better than getting an old-school show back on a streaming service. HBOmax has come through for all the vibes. HBO is really making a case to stay around when I downsize on my apps. Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper is a sitcom that originally aired on ABC from September 22, 1992, to August 30, 1997, starring Mark Curry and Holly Robinson. The show took place in Curry’s hometown of Oakland, California. The series chronicles Mark Cooper (Curry), an NBA player-turned-substitute teacher/gym coach (and later basketball coach), and his roommates, Vanessa, and his cousins, Geneva and Nicole. Younger me missed that Mark Curry was a comedian. But I loved him in the show. So as far as rewatches go… I knew that was where I was going to start. OAN: I also didn’t realize that Mark Curry is so tall. I kept watching episodes and thinking to myself… “His arms seem really long.” Well, that would be because he is 6′ 6″.

For some reason though, there was a lot I did not know about the show. The first season seems a lot like Three’s Company. I remember it being a part of TGIF… but the first season wasn’t all that kid-friendly. Now when I say that, I don’t mean it was raunchy or inappropriate. In the first season, Mark Cooper, Vanessa Russell, and Robin Dumars live as roommates in a house that they rent together. I don’t know that I would live with a male friend mostly because who wants to constantly talk about putting the seat down? Mark, whose room is in the den, had initially moved in with Robin and Vanessa to help them with their rent. Gotta love the arguments that ensue over who spends too much time in the bathroom and Mark eating all the groceries. Robin is Mark’s childhood friend and Vanessa is Robin’s best friend (and sorority sister) from college. Robin is played by Dawnn Lewis. And if you read my post about A Different World, you would know how much I love her. Not sure why she had to leave. The first season worked just fine with her. She even did the theme song. It was my favorite. I didn’t get why she didn’t stay past season 1. When Raven and her mother take over in the house… It was one of the more seamless transitions that I have seen on television. (Still miss Dawnn though.)

The second season intro isn’t so bad either. I forget that the ’90s was about bright colors. Check out the intro here.

So like I usually do in these instances, I have a list of episodes that I think are pretty great. I will say… I have enjoyed this show more than I thought I would. And more than I remember doing so in the past. So let’s jump into some of my favorite episodes from the show.

  • Hangin with Michelle (Season 1, Episode 2) – You guys know Michelle Tanner right? LOL. So this was not an episode that I remember seeing but again it makes perfect sense given that the shot has a spot on TGIF. Since Mark is a substitute teacher, he subs for Michelle’s class. I was hoping to see Tahj as Teddy. He’s not there but I do get to see Jurnee Smollett. Young me screamed out. Poor Mark is out of his league with the first graders. He ends up hurting his back and needing to be wheeled out of the classroom on a stretcher. Michelle comes to visit (being dropped off by Uncle Jesse.) but she ends up causes Mark more pain. Not purposefully but Mark is pretty good with kids. It is no wonder he is a teacher. Check out some of the scenes here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVi17LJOx3s)

  • Cheers (Season 1, Episode 5) – Did Mark irritate people in a past life? Because he can’t seem to make into the PE department. The Principal wants Mark to help the Cheerleading team win the cheer competition. Seems like he is setting the team at a disadvantage. What does Mark know about Cheerleading? Nothing. I see Countess Vaughan here as one of the cheerleaders though. Mark may be about jokes but he does come through when students are involved. When Vanessa shows that she knows about cheerleading… Mark enlists her help to help him train the girls. He gets the girls pumped for their competition even though they come in second place. But the girls want him to remain their coach for the season.

  • My Dinner Date with Mark (Season 1, Episode 9) – Vanessa can be a bit sheltered and uppity… But she is good people. Reminds me of Whitley.. except less rude. Vanessa is given the opportunity to pitch her new idea to bring in a new client. She corners the client (Mrs. Walker) in the elevator and actually secures the meeting. The thing that annoyed me…. and this has to be because the show aired in the early 90’s was the fact that Mrs. Walker kept calling Vanessa a secretary as if there was something wrong with that or somehow beneath her. She doesn’t want to talk to anyone who is not an executive. Weird since the idea for how to invest her money came from Vanessa. When Vanessa figures out that her boss is stuck at the airport and wants her to reschedule… there is a dilemma. Vanessa tells Robin, there is no way she can reschedule since Mrs. Walker didn’t want to deal with her in the first place. It is Robin who suggests that she get someone to pretend to be an executive… because nothing can go wrong there. Who else could it be but Mark? Mark can be troublesome but he comes through in the clutch to seal the deal. But it is all ruined in the end. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SAeZHFdpnTg)

  • How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (Season 1, Episode 14) – When teachers go on strike, Mark is left to try and find another job. He manages to secure a position in the mailroom of Vanessa’s company. Vanessa starts out thinking that she can order Mark around. However, Mark is never one to be told what to do. He manages to land a higher position which means that he is Vanessa’s boss. She can’t handle that. Mark dazzles accidentally on his short lived fame of playing with the Warriors. He is bringing clients without really trying. Mark has a natural ability which is driving Vanessa crazy. She tries to kill him but decides to quit first. Before she can do so, Mark is replaced with another celebrity and sent back to his teaching job. Poor Mark.

  • Piano Lesson (Season 1, Episode 19) – Robin’s boyfriend, Jason, gives Robin a necklace. Robin assumes that she will go to Hawaii that weekend. She cuts out on her hang day with Mark at the pool hall. She pushes Vanessa to go with him instead. (Recipe for disaster? Sure.) Vanessa does not fit in with the crowd even though she claims to know how to play pool. She gets Mark into a fight. SMH. When they get back home, they tell Robin they had a great time at the pool house and that they won the game. This leads Mark and Vanessa to go to a Jazz Concert. Meanwhile, Robin’s boyfriend tells Robin that he has to go to Hawaii for meetings and can not bring her along. She starts feeling like a third wheel to Vanessa and Mark. There is a great scene where they try to explain to Mark why Robin is upset, even though Robin never expressly said why. Mark even asks her why she didn’t just say she was mad and why? Poor Mark didn’t get it. LOL.
  • Free at Last (Season 2, Episode 5) – Vanessa has an idea that she is going to be promoted at her job… Toplin and Toplin (Is this a father and son? Are they brothers? I mean it is not essential to the story but I would like to know.) Things don’t go as planned when she attempts to move into the office with the help of Mark and they both meet the new guy… She is asked to train the new man that is going to be her boss. Needless to say, she makes far less than he does and is still expected to get him up to speed. (We have all been there right?) Mark later points out that her bosses would not have asked that of a man. (He’s not wrong.) He tells her to demand her promotion. So she does just that… But she ends up fired. She decides to pick up another job at a Japanese Restaurant. SMH. What would make her think she would want to work at a restaurant of any kind? She invites Geneva, Mark and Nicole to dinner. (Another thing I wondered… why did they keep making this man sit on the floor? It seemed like a lot for him to get down on the floor. Mark Curry is all limbs people.) He tries to save the day with the man on the hibachi up and quits. (Not his fault… Because Vanessa is notoriously bad at her job.) It is the disaster you are picturing in your minds. Pretty Funny though.
  • Air Cooper (Season 2, Episode 10) – They wore out the “Mark played for the Warriors thing.” More like he did. But I mean… At this point, it had already gotten him a job with Vanessa. So when he was offered a commercial by Vanessa’s boyfriend. I didn’t bat an eye. He thinks that he is going to be the star of the commercial. He tells everyone and of course they want to put in a request for new sneakers. And who wouldn’t. He cons his boss into renting out the gym so that it can be filmed. And he looks good with the ball in hands. But because he is actually talented that have to talk him into missing baskets. He doesn’t seem to get that the director wants to paint him in worst light possible. He catches on and decides to continue doing the commercial for the money. But P. J and the team back him up. There is a point where he walks over to the a sign hanging up on the gym wall behind him and pulling it down. It is times like that where I remember how tall he is. The great thing is at the end.. the commercial is made and the idea around it was revamped with Mark in a much better light.
  • Private School (Season 2, Episode 12) – Mark gets pimped out for Black History Month. (I won’t go into detail about how that is a trend for February…) P.J. assigns Mark to teach Black history at an expensive private school for one week. Seeing that the class is all-white, he decides to teach them “from slavery to Soul Train.” It doesn’t help that the school has much more amenities for teachers not to mention better pay. When the principal offers him a job at a much higher salary, Mark has a big decision to make. He takes his job as a teacher and coach seriously. And he wants to see all of his students succeed. But we all know how well public schools are funded, how well teachers are paid and how much worse it is when we are talking about intercity public schools. Mark manages to look past the money and stay with Oakbridge High.

  • It’s My Party and I’ll Die if I Want To (Season 2, Episode 14) – Is there nothing more 90’s than an episode where someone thinks they are dying? It is almost Mark’s 30th birthday and there is not a better present than Tyler finding a weird growth on his arm. Tyler is one busybody neighbor whose parents seem just find with sending him to disturb mostly Mark. (How come people do not lock their door?) Tyler tells Mark about a relative that had a weird growth and died. (There is no real explanation. Those two things may not even be connected but no matter.) Mark gets it removed at a doctor’s office where she tells him that she will call him with the results. (That big baby was scared of a needle.) So what ensues a series of miscommunications. Mark uses a baby monitor to listen in to Geneva and Vanessa to find out what he is getting for his birthday… (He doesn’t know that they know he is listening…) However, they sound like he’s not going to live long. He takes it to mean that the doctor called and that he is dying. He spends the rest of the episode crossing things off his bucket list and giving away his belongings. Bungee Jumping. It is at his party where it is revealed that he is fine. SMH. It is still pretty funny.
  • My Achy Breaky Back (Season 3, Episode 9) – This is by far my favorite episode of the series. No lie. I was watching an interview with Mark Curry where he talks about having to be physical to get the show. No where is it more apparent than this episode. So it starts off with an injury to Mark’s back trying to get groceries out of the car. Just before the injury he talks about getting an interview with a college basketball club. Is the back injury going to keep him from the interview? Absolutely not which may not be the best idea. He hobbles into school and refuses help until he is almost in tears. Ervin thinks he is helping but he just makes things worse. Vanessa talks him into coming to her doctor’s office for treatment. (Why in the world would he trust her at all is beyond me?) He ends up strapped to this table, getting electroshocks. When Vanessa leaves the room, he ends up spinning around uncontrollably. When Vanessa finally pulls him off the table… He can at least stand on his own accord with no pain. All seems to be well… until the next day when Marks starts having uncontrollable muscle spasms…. (He flings his cereal on Geneva. I had tears in my eyes. I could not have been counted on to film this scene with them.) Vanessa reveals that 2 out of 3 patients have the same issues. I would think that is something you would tell someone before you do a procedure on them. But hey. They try to get Mark to reschedule his interview but he can’t. He is like a walking tornado in that man’s office. It is some of the best physical comedy that I have seen in a while. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6J1p8gCkMgc&t=845s)

  • The Matchmaker (Season 3, Episode 20) – There is nothing like a family member (or anyone ) that shows up unannounced. In this case, we have Aunt Eunetta who takes 6 days to drive from Georgia to Oakland and parks her RV in their driveway. She spends her week harassing the trio by claiming she can match these single people up by reading their heads. Poor single people can’t ever get things done in their lives without an older person wanting to set them up. SMH. Like she actually strong armed Vanessa on the couch. Aunt Eunetta decides that Vanessa is the best person for Mark. The funny part would be dream sequences both Mark and Vanessa have about what their relationships would be like if they do get together. Mark and Vanessa decide to head out to the Anita Baker concert since she purchased the tickets for it prior to her and her boyfriend breaking up. Mark and Vanessa, get stuck in an elevator and share a kiss to dispel her prediction and discover that they enjoy kissing each other. (It is Vanessa’s idea… Mark never seems put off by it.) Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a8ok8Ka23U0)

  • R.E.S.P.E.C.T (Season 4, Episode 9) – Geneva is fed up with doing everything for everyone and having to work. (The working family woman’s plight.) Except in Geneva’s case… Mark and Vanessa are not kids. They should be doing their own laundry as well as cooking their own food. Mark is fed up with Geneva’s rules and opens his big mouth to say so. (Mark is usually not so pigheaded so this was disappointing but he gets it in the end.) Geneva decides to move out with Nicole since she is not getting any respect. Mark invites his inconsiderate friends Steve and Lydell to move in, causing Vanessa to move out. Very quickly we realize that the shoe is on the other foot. They don’t clean or pay for anything. Mark is the new Geneva which makes it easier for him to understand her plight. (Tyler is the one who points out that his complaints mirror Geneva’s and why she had so many rules.) Nicole and Tyler set Geneva and Mark up so that they can talk to each other and Mark can apologize… Eventually things get back to normal. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DR-WyuSDe_c)
  • Rivals (Season 4, Episode 17) – Jamie Foxx guest stars…. After their teams trade pranks against each other’s mascot, Mark’s rival coach fakes a heart attack.  Later, Mark is banned from their game. Mark tries to get people to believe that Jamie is faking but no one is on his side. Geneva is stuck between a rock and a hard place because she has to eject Mark from the game. Mark decides to dress up like the opposing teams mascot to gain entry to the gym and coach his team incognito. He gets them both thrown out of the game. They can’t even watch the game. They patch things up in the locker room because there is really nothing else to do. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-LDjii3uY0w)

  • True Confessions (Season 4, Episode 20) – This episode made me want to kick Mark in the shins. But do people use words anymore? Do they talk about how they feel? Did they ever? Anyway, after Geneva introduces Vanessa to a successful, handsome man, Mark does everything he can to sabotage the developing relationship. He interrupts their date by sitting in between them and talking about the history of basketball. (Like from its inception to the present.) Vanessa can’t get him to go away no matter how angry she is. Then he decides to make it up to her and her date by buying 4 tickets to a Whitney Houston Concert. He gets Vanessa to agree to double date with him and another woman. (Why she agreed is beyond me… It has to do with Whitney I bet.) What we find out later is that Mark’s date is the ex fiance of Mark’s date. (He had to know that to begin with.) Needless to say, the ex couple rekindles their relationship leaving Vanessa out to dry. Vanessa exacts on Mark by taking a crowbar to his car. She forces him to admit that he was jealous because he wants to be with her. (It goes back to the first episodes when Robin points out that Mark is attracted to Vanessa… and to the Matchmaker episode.) Vanessa is the one who suggests they share a kiss to make sure they have chemistry. It is Mark who suggests that they do it again. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xl0iHzgf12M)

  • Breaking Up is Hard to Do (Season 4, Episode 21) – At breakfast, Mark and Vanessa announce that they are dating. Things start out fine until they have dinner with Vanessa’s stale friends. Mark starts off tell her he does not want to hang out with Ben and Barb…. They listen to AM radio… I mean that is reason enough. (I ask again why they keep making this sit on the floor. He looks so awkward getting up and down. SOMEONE GET THIS MAN A CHAIR.) During the date, he complains that he is bored to tears…. I mean the man is talking to him about rice. (The fact that I found interesting though is when describes his preferred night… even though he mentions basketball… he says he wants to watch a game at home with her… And then the twins show up that know Mark and things progessively get worse… After their first fight, they decide that it would be better if they were just friends. It is a bit extreme I know. (I used to think my guy had to double date with me all the time.) Both Mark and Vanessa go on dates with other people (more to make the other person jealous than because they actually like the people they are dating. Mark actually dates the twins at the same time.) Eventually, since both Mark and Vanessa are stubborn, Geneva has to forced them back together in a ball pit… and yes that is as whacky as it sounds. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aWLfM8xserg)
  • Will She or Won’t She? (Season 4, Epsiode 22) – Lydell comes over to let everyone know that he and his girlfriend, Florence have decided to get married. While both Geneva and Vanessa are ecstatic about it. Mark is not. He likens marriage to prison and wives as wardens. While Vanessa is disappointed to hear this… she isn’t shocked. This wasn’t the last time I heard this attitude towards marriage but why be in a relationship with a person you do not like? Also why not just be happy for your friend? Despite wanting to marry Mark, (because where is this relationship going?) Vanessa innocently has lunch with her former boyfriend. Geneva spills the beans on purpose it seems like because she did very little to keep her mouth shut. When Mark finds out, he frantically proposes marriage to her. SMH… Why would you do this only to keep her away from someone else. I wanted to pluck both of his eyes. LOL. Vanessa rejects him, thinking he only did it out of jealousy and she was not wrong. Since Mark is Lydell’s Best Man, he has the good luck to be the one to keep the man from jumping out of his skin and running away before he leaves the alter. Lydell repeats a lot of what Mark spouted about marriage but Mark assures him he is making the right decision. Mark decides then that the right decision is to seriously propose to Vanessa which he does at a Warriors game. It was cute. Probably better if she actually liked sports. But I will say it did take her by surprise.

  • The Ring (Season 5, Episode 1) – This man proposed with no ring ya’ll. So when they announce their engagement to Geneva, naturally she wants to see the ring. Mark and Vanessa eventually go ring shopping together. But Vanessa has expensive tastes… and Mark, who on a teachers salary, is trying to save money. The cheapest ring that Vanessa was looking at was $14000. Ma’am… what. This episode is over 20 years old but 14k seems like a lot for me. More because I don’t have that to throw around. Mark tries to save money and impress Vanessa by cutting corners and you and I know that never works. He enlists the help of Ervin… I am not sure why he called Ervin. Ervin is never the go to person. They end up at this back alley marketplace trying to buy a ring. The cheapest they found is 5K but Mark only has 2K and tries to work out a deal with the guy. He leaves with the ring but soon finds out that he needs to come up with the other 3K. Instead of taking the ring from Vanessa… although he tries… He ends up giving away his ride to make her happy. But she doesn’t allow that. It was a cute scene where he gives her the ring.
  • The In-Laws (Season 5, Episode 3) – Vanessa is in a tizzy because her parents are in town and want to meet Mark. She fears they won’t like him… She attempts to prep him for a meeting with her dad… and things go horribly awry. With all the preparation, Mark still gets drunk and makes a complete fool of himself. Well more like Vanessa’s father gets him drunk. It is a ploy to try to drive them apart but Vanessa stands her ground in her decision. Evenutally, her mother makes her father apologize and they have proper do over. But drunk Mark is great. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aw2DdHN9JXM&t=298s)

In the end, it was a fun rewatch. Mark is pretty funny and great at physical comedy. Watching this show led me to watch a lot of his stand-up. I was not disappointed. I enjoyed the characters and the fact that he was a black male teacher. There are still not enough of those 30 years later. It was a bit cheesy but I am always cool with that. Maybe it is me… but I do not think it got enough recognition back in the day. Like people don’t talk about it much. But thank goodness these shows are seeing a resurgence on streaming services. And here’s to hoping we get more shows like it. That is all for now.

Quarantine Post #74: Delay of Game Book 3


So it has been a bit since I last reviewed a book. Mostly because I have not been reading (or listening) as much as I want. So since it is a new year… I decided that I was going to cancel my audible subscription, not because I do not like the service… Since I started working from home, the routine that I had where I would listen to a book every few weeks on the way to work has changed. However, that didn’t stopped me from using my credits. That has left me with about 100 titles. I have vowed this year to try to battle through my audible titles before purchasing anymore.

Scrolling through my library, I decided on another hockey romance. Delay of Game by Stephanie Kay. Only I would pick a book that is the 3rd book in a series and read it out of order. No matter. Lucky for me… these books are standalones. Nothing like starting a series in the whole but things could have been worse.

So… both Sophia and Eric “Finn” Finnegan were interesting characters… This novel was all about secrets… and both of these characters have some really big ones. Sophia works two jobs (full time… Ugh been there done that.) … one at the family restaurant and then as an assistant at the physical therapist office. Her parents really are leaning hard on her to quit her dream and work full time at the restaurant. The constant nagging grates on Sophia’s nerves. Her parents don’t seem to get that she doesn’t want her life to revolve around the restaurant. I understood that. It is at the office that she meets Eric Finnegan who wants back on the ice. He plays for the San Francisco Strikers. Finn’s broken ankle needs several weeks of physical therapy to be in with a fighting chance of starting the hockey season. The only issue is… Finn doesn’t want to follow medical advice. Who didn’t see that coming? A patient that doesn’t want to follow instructions… who knew?

Both characters have family issues that they need to deal with. Family secrets are the name of the game. Some people in reviews complained that people should just be adults… In Sophia’s case, it is hard to go against what is expected of you. When you have a close relationship with your parents, you do anything to shield them from things that may disappoint. Or you are not into confrontation… Everyone handles disagreements differently. But secrets can only last so long. It didn’t take me long to finish the story. Her secret involves her ex-boyfriend, whom her family loves, and thinks of as part of their family. (You would think that her not wanting to talk about it would be a red flag but her parents are dunces.) In Finn’s case, his secret has to do with his strained relationship with his father.

I enjoyed Finn. He starts off gruff with a slightly rude exterior. He gets better as his injury starts to heal but I was originally thinking… This man is going to derail the whole thing. He was hellbent on trying to go 10 times harder than he needed to. I am not sure what it is about Thor that has writer’s up and arms now. This is the 4th book I read where the man looks like Thor. Every man with long hair isn’t Thor. However, I did enjoy the exchanges between him and his friends as well as him and Sophia. The relationship with Sophia starts out innocent enough but it quickly turns when they start getting close. Sophia initially has her guard up because she doesn’t want to lose her job and she has enough on her plate with trying to move past her ex and her family demands. But soon their attraction can’t be avoided.

But boy does shit hit the fan… secrets have a way of coming to light. And even having the best intentions doesn’t mean that the best decisions have been made. In Sophia’s case, secret keeping turned into its own beast. It became less about her and not hurting the people around her with the truth no matter how much it was tearing her apart. Finn, on the other hand, thought he was protecting his family… But making decisions for people without their input is never good.

I enjoyed the story. The characters were fully fleshed out with really young adult issues. I enjoy reading about things that could actually happen to people. Could our young couple have handled things better? Sure. But people learn over time. There was some repetitiveness in the book but it wasn’t enough to stop me from wanting to know more. Sophia’s friend Claire was a riot… except for a few things she lets slip to Finn. Not cool sis. But in the end… it was a cute story.

Quarantine Post #73: Doug


I find that my favorite show on Nickelodeon back in the day that didn’t involve live people was Doug. I have been my rewatching kick so it was nice that Hulu had the first 4 seasons for a bit. I am sure they are on Paramount Plus now and Disney plus has the rest of the show. The original run consisted of 52 episodes over four seasons that were broadcast from 1991 to 1994. Nickelodeon opted against renewing the show for a fifth season, so in 1996, Disney green-lit the fifth season after acquiring Jumbo Pictures.  The show moved to ABC’s Saturday morning lineup for three years, also taking two title changes to differentiate the new episodes from the Nickelodeon seasons. It became a top-rated show, inspiring various books, merchandise, a live musical stage show, and a theatrical feature, Doug’s 1st Movie, released as the series’ conclusion in 1999.

I think I remembered the Nickelodeon version with love in my heart. My mom used to rent it on VHS on days I was home sick from school. (It was also one of the few kid’s show’s that she enjoyed.) I was never a fan of Rugrats so it was all Doug for me. The show focuses on the early adolescent life of its title character, Douglas “Doug” Funnie, who experiences common predicaments while attending school in his new hometown of Bluffington. Doug narrates each story in his journal, and the show incorporates many imagination sequences. The series addresses numerous topics, including trying to fit in, platonic and romantic relationships, self-esteem, bullying, and rumors. Many episodes center on Doug’s attempts to impress his classmate and crush, Patti Mayonnaise. When it was switched to Disney… I don’t think I ever gave it the chance it deserved. So here was the time to properly assess the show… without being annoyed about a few changes. People hate change… but not all change is bad.

I would say the Nickelodeon intro was the superior one though…

Let’s start off with a few of my favorite Nickelodeon episodes. I was almost convinced to keep a handwritten journal because Doug had one. One could argue that this has been my journal. “Hey, journal, it’s me, Doug.”―Doug Funnie

  • Doug Can’t Dance/Doug Gets Busted – Poor Doug has moved to Bluffington… and is trying to fit in. And I hated going to dance’s as a kid and this episode highlights why. After Doug checks himself out in his slug costume in the mirror, he heads out to the dance. He already seems like an anxious 11 year old but Roger doesn’t help. Roger asks if the costume is a pile of manure, and if he’s paired up to dance with Patti. After questioning Doug about how he’s never danced before and stating that Patti is the best dancer at the school, Doug imagines everyone laughing at him. After a walk, Doug meets up with Mr. & Mrs. Dink, who are going as a “grade A thorough-bred chicken” and “the wife of a giant chicken.”  The trend is to go to ask Mr. Dink for advice but I don’t see where he has ever provided Doug with good advice. After mistaking Doug’s costume for dirty socks, the couple drives off. Doug hangs on a tire swing at the park and plans on not going to the dance, then Skeeter (after mistaking Doug’s costume for Godzilla) comes around, he gives him some dancing tips while beat-boxing. Poor Skeeter tries to help but ends up all tangled up. Check it out: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FGIpaV8gWnE) Doug finally shows up to the dance reassuring himself and fantasizing being a great dancer.  Patti then shows up as a sunflower, complimenting Doug on his slug costume (and being the first person to recognize it as a slug). Before the two enter the building, Roger (as a hammer) tells Doug he wants to dance with Patti instead, but Doug refuses. Roger decides to get back at Doug. After Doug gets the hang of dancing (with the help of Patti.) Gotta love Patti. She is super sweet. Roger plans to put ice down Doug’s back, but drops some and slips.  As the end of Roger’s hammer costume lands on Doug’s foot, Doug screams. After people start to laugh at Doug, Patti pretends it’s a new dance and everyone joins in (score another one for Patti), except Roger who has fallen on his back and can’t get up. For Doug Gets Busted, Doug makes a model of a volcano for a science project. Chalky teaches his Venus flytrap how to sing the opera, Beebe has a project that shows trees cause more pollution than her father’s factory, Skeeter dresses as the solar system, Roger has a firecracker disguised as a Super Nova, and Doug has a volcano, which he shows Patti, with Porkchop doing the hula dance. Suddenly, assistant principal Mr. Bone comes in and informs Doug that volcanoes are forbidden on school property.  Roger tries to blow out the fire from his firecracker, but to no avail. He tries to let Skeeter take the blame, but Mr. Bone catches him in the act and puts out the fire from the Super Nova as well. As the other students witness this, the rumors about the science lab being burnt down precipitates. When Roger takes the blame from his gang, Doug comes around and Roger gets Doug to believe that his volcano burnt down the science lab, and that Doug will get arrested by the cops for the act. In his imagination, he is wearing jailhouse stripes on the run from the cops. Doug runs away, only to get surprised by Mr. Dink’s newly installed car alarm. Back home, Doug sneaks in Judy’s room to find a disguise. Judy comes in and gives Doug a cape, hat, and a fake mustache, and Doug adopts the persona “Jack Bandit.” Doug later has a dream of escaping from Mrs. Wingo’s class as Jack Bandit, only to get caught by a police officer. Doug has no choice but to go on the lam. But first, he walks into his parents room to say goodbye. He and Porkchop set up a tent and a campfire outside as outlaws. Doug succmbs to hunger… Mr. Bone appears and tells Doug that the principal would like to have a word with him.  Doug walks into the principal’s office (with Porkchop being kicked out in the process) and as he comes out, he explains that he won second place in the science fair. Mrs. Wingo liked his volcano, as well as Porkchop’s hula dance. So Doug reverts back to his normal life and is seen inside his room, saying that there might be another time where another evil science project might strike. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pmt_fnnn6UM)

  • Doug’s Dog’s Date/Doug’s Big Nose – When Porkchop begins acting very strangely, Doug tries to find out what’s causing his friend’s odd behavior. A boy and his dog. How Cute. The episode begins with a flashback of Doug as an infant riding on Porkchop as a pony. Doug narrates that he and Porkchop were best friends, like two peas in a pod. Later, Doug is shown sitting on his porch playing his banjo and singing about his lost dog. Roger shows up and mocks Doug for getting abandoned by his own dog, to which Doug reluctantly agrees to. Doug narrates the event a couples of days prior when Porkchop starts acting strange. He pays no attention to the paper airplane thrown by Doug that hits him on the head and refuses to eat a Peanutty Buddy chocolate ice cream Doug offers him. Knowing that something is wrong with his dog, Doug takes him to the vet immediately, only to find out that he’s okay, despite the fact that the dog can’t sleep or eat. So the vet convinces Doug to spy on Porkchop to see what his problem is. (The problem is pretty obvious though.) So the next day, 11:45 AM, Doug acts as a detective and notices Porkchop listening to sappy music and moping. Doug’s detective game doesn’t last long, as he becomes distracted by Patti, who invites him to play beet ball with her and the others. When Doug notices Porkchop is leaving, he turns it down and quickly follows him. The dog stops in front of a fancy house, and Mr. Dink shows up and tells Doug that Porkchop has a case of puppy love when he notices a female dog that Porkchop falls in love with. So Doug helps Porkchop get ready for his first date and tells Porkchop to be home by 10 o’clock. At 7 o’clock, Doug plays Barnyard Chess on his own and becomes bored. So he decides to draw instead and ends up drawing a picture of his dog. Doug soon begins to miss his dog. As Porkchop is still on his date, it is almost bedtime, and Doug begins to worry about his dog, not to mention the stormy weather.  When Porkchop finally shows up, Doug admonishes the dog for coming home late, but Porkchop is too love struck to heed anything Doug has said, even after the latter asks him if he would pick his lover or his owner, and the dog goes inside his igloo. The next day, Doug goes to Porkchop’s igloo and offers him a Doggy Delight, only to find out that he is missing. Doug is convinced that his best friend is leaving him. During a game of Barnyard Chess with Skeeter, Skeeter convinces Doug to get a new pet. Doug instantly disagrees, and when he hears Patti calling, he goes over to the baseball diamond and learns how to play beet ball. (He tells Skeeter to hold on.) When Patti reminds Doug to bring Skeeter over next time, Doug soon remembers that he had left his friend and apologizes for leaving him, using Patti’s effect on him as the reason. Skeeter forgives him. When Skeeter reminds Doug that the two are still friends, Doug soon realizes that Porkchop might be home too and runs to his house, where he sees the heartbroken dog sitting on the porch. The female dog that Porkchop fell in love with has dumped him for another dog. Doug reminds Porkchop that he still has his owner as a friend, and everything goes back to normal. Skeeter later gets a date of his own, but Doug isn’t worried, because he knew that his friend will be back. In Doug’s Big Nose, Mr. Bone announces through the intercom that everyone will be taken their school picture at photo swap day. (Man… I wish we did this in school seems super creative… but maybe not. I was not as popular as I would like to think.) As the bell ring, the students leave the classroom and Skeeter explains to Doug that everyone gets their photo traded with someone else. As Doug imagines Patti swapping her photos to him, he goes with Skeeter to pick up his 3-year-old brother Dale from Ding Dong Daycare. When Dale comes out, Skeeter introduces him to Doug. Dale greets him when he says “Hiya, big nose,” which cause Doug to lose his self-confidence. (Kids can be so cruel… Poor Doug.) Doug starts becoming insecure of his big nose. When Roger shows up, he mocks him and tells Doug to get two pictures taking: one for him and one for his nose. As if Roger’s nose is smaller. Doug becomes upset because he was the last to know that his nose was big and that he probably had one his whole life. Doug tries to contrive ways to make his nose more inconspicuous and wears a suit, glasses, and plastic ears. He shows up late in Mrs. Wingo’s class as she is teaching. Doug compares the math problems to how big his nose would grow as he ages: thinking if A equals how big his nose is now, and B represents his nose’s annual rate with growth, then it would be his nose that would get a college degree. In his imagination: Doug swaps his photo with Patti and Patti looks at it, only to get poked in the face by the growing nose that emerges from the photo. During photo swap day, Skeeter had just taken his picture and as Patti and Beebe sit with them during lunch, Beebe asks Patti how her picture came out, to which the latter responds “Who knows?” Doug, trying to hide his prominent nose in front of them, becomes convinced that Patti and Bebe are mocking him already, and Bebe also adds that the girl in front of her was “nosey.” Patti also adds that people should “keep their big noses out of others’ business”. Doug leaves the table and refuses to take his picture. Skeeter tells Doug that it’s the rules to get your picture taken, unless you got sick. So Doug goes to the nurse after painting yellow spots on his face and fakes being sick to avoid taking his photo, telling the nurse he has “turkey pox.” But the nurse doesn’t buy this, telling Doug that he is the fourth kid that day to make up that story. So Doug says instead, he has the “kangaroo flu”, which also proves to be futile. When Doug’s story about having an “allergic reaction to beets” is also equally implausible, he gives up in making any excuse and decides to just take his picture. Mr. Bone later announces that the students with their last name beginning with F should take their photos immediately. Patti comes around and lets Doug know that she heard Roger teasing him of his nose and tells him that his nose gives him character, making him one-of-a-kind. (Patti is great. We love Patti.) This causes Doug to regain his self-confidence and he proudly goes to get his picture taken. When everyone gets their photos back, Doug looks at his and swaps it to Patti, who also swaps her picture to Doug. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kGeCXmkABx0)

  • Doug Gets His Ears Lowered/Doug on the Wild Side – Doug’s hair is getting too long but he hasn’t found a barber yet since moving to Bluffington. (seems like a long time to go without getting a haircut.) Doug wakes up in the morning and decides that it is time for him to get a haircut. He states that no one has ever cut his hair other than his old Barber Big Al Sweeney from Bloatsburg. While searching for a barber, Doug runs into Mr. Dink, who introduces him to the Cutting Edge Hair gadget. As Doug tries to find the barbershop, he later rebuffs the idea, figuring he doesn’t want to look like Mr. Dink. Skeeter comes around and asks if he wants to go to the mall with him to purchase the new video game Canine Space Race. When Doug tells him that he is getting a haircut, Skeeter says that Doug is “getting his ears lowered.” Judy runs into the boys and takes Doug to the barber shop she goes to called Slash, Burn and Curl. Doug looks around the shop to find many customers getting the most absurd hairstyles he has ever seen. (What else did you espect from Judy’s hair salon?) Judy then introduces him to the barber, but Doug later rejects the shop as well, and Skeeter asks Doug if he would like to go to the barbershop at the mall with him, adding that they would make his hair perfect. So he goes to the Four Leaf Clover Mall with Skeeter, where they encounter Roger. Roger decides to join Doug on his hair cutting adventure… but honestly… why? Roger is weird. Skeeter introduces Doug to the hair shop Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow. Before Doug goes in, Skeeter warns Doug to not run into a lady known as “The Fluke”, for she is crazy, and Doug’s friend walks to the video store. As Doug steps into the shop, he takes a seat in the barber chair and find that Patti is there as well. Doug unwillingly gets Cynthia, nicknamed “The Fluke”, who turns out to be a white-haired lady with an Australian accent. When she offers Doug a number of bizarre hairstyles, Doug runs away from the shop and Roger takes his spot to get his haircut. Doug feels defeated because every barbershop he has been to is what he didn’t want and ended up not getting a haircut in the process. He later meets a barber named Joe, who had just moved in Bluffington. The barber gives Doug a perfect trim, and Joe reminds Doug of Al Sweeney back at Bloatsburg. Doug discovers that the barber Joe is Big Al’s cousin and Joe offers Doug and Porkchop lollipops. Back in his room, he gets a knock on his door and Skeeter rushes in and tells Doug to look out his window. The two find Roger with a absurd haircut arguing with a couple of squirrels. Skeeter states that apparently, no one has warned Roger about the Fluke and he and Doug laugh at Roger’s embarrassing haircut. In Doug on the Wild Side, Doug’s risk taking grandmother comes to town and shows him a variety of new things. She is apparently not your typical grandmother… Grandma Opal arrives bearing some eccentric gifts. Judy gets a pair of Indian boots, Phil and Theda get caveman clothing, and Doug receives a white jacket, which he finds interesting.  Opal later suggests that Doug would take her to a tour around Bluffington, which Doug quickly agrees to. Theda tells Grandma Opal to be back by 6:00 since she is cooking a special supper. Doug brings Porkchop along to ride with his grandmother on her motorcycle sidecar and they ride through the town. As Grandma Opal continues riding, a bunch of bikers come their way. Grandma Opal pulls over and the biker named Bubba pulls up in front of her. She shows him her grandchildren and Bubba shows her grandchildren of his own as well. (Doug thought that it was going to go a different way.) Doug and his grandmother stop by the Sushi Bar to get some lunch. When Grandma Opal tells Doug that sushi is raw fish, Doug starts to lose his appetite instantly. Doug decides to go on a temporary diet. But Grandma Opal tells Doug to at least try it. So as the sushi is delivered at their table, Grandma Opal tells Doug to pretend like it is ice cream he once tried for the first time. Doug then reminisces on this event and voraciously scarfed the ice cream his grandmother offered him as a child. So Doug gives sushi a taste and likes it. Soon, he takes another taste of another sushi and enjoys it. (I used to think the same thing… but Sushi is really great.) Doug asks his grandmother if they could just go, saying that Patti might not feel like talking. But Grandma Opal encourages him to talk to her. So when Patti spots him, Doug diffidently tells her that she looks nice today. An appreciated Patti thanks him for his compliment. Doug and Grandma Opal continue riding and Doug realizes the time. So Grandma Opal rides to the house. The next day, Grandma Opal says goodbye to the Funnie family and rides off. Doug decides to find an adventure of his own and he and Porkchop ride away on their bikes as Doug once again imagines him and Porkchop riding off on their motorcycles. Check it out: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_4spHDU0VTg)

  • Doug’s Cookin/Doug Loses Dale – The episode starts in Ms. Wingo’s class when Ms. Wingo puts the students in pairs to work on a cooking recipe for the bake-off tomorrow. The duo who makes the most original and tastiest dish win win the bake-off contest. Skeeter gets paired with Beebe and Doug fantasizes himself as a chef. (I often wondered what kind of school Doug went to… because we never did anything like that until high school.) In Doug’s imagination: Doug is demonstrating the technique of grilling a cheese sandwich while speaking in a French accent. He places a slice of cheese between the slices of bread and places them on the pan. When it finishes cooking, he places it back on the plate and an impressed Patti congratulates him as he holds the plate in his hand. (His imagination is pretty funny.) Back in reality, Doug gets paired with Patti. Patti explains that she is less enthusiastic about the bake-off due to her poor cooking skills, stating that she permeated her house with smoke the last time she tried. So Patti suggests that the two should cook something tonight. Due to their being an odd number of students in the class, Roger is picked as Ms. Wingo’s partner, much to the bully’s disgust. (Younger me was glad that no one would be stuck with Roger. But he always manages to ruin things.) At his house inside his kitchen, Doug prepares to make everything perfect before Patti comes over by finding the right recipe, something less rudimentary and, at the same time, less exhaustive, as well as something unique, but familiar. So Porkchop suggests that Doug asks Mr. Dink for a cookbook to borrow. Mr. Dink introduces him to Julia (voice and similar to Julia Child), his kitchen cooking unit. He later offers Doug his cookbook (as well as a carrot to go with it) and Doug decides to make a carrot cake. But when Patti comes over to cook with Doug, her inept cooking skills causes problems for the two’s impending recipe and Patti decides to call in sick tomorrow. But Doug refuses, saying that he and Patti are in it together. So he cancels the cake recipe and after looking at a pizza commercial, he instead decides to make a pizza, believing that Patti would do great on the recipe. The next day, everyone is cooking their recipes for their dish. Beebe has Skeeter doing the work for their dish and Ms. Wingo leaves Roger to make banana pudding as she takes care of a problem in the kitchen. Doug and Patti make their pizza and cook it in the oven as Patti gets the hang of cooking. Roger fails on his banana pudding recipe and takes it to a trash can to dump it. Doug and Patti successfully cook their pizza and take it out of the oven. As they attempt to take it to the counter, they bump into Roger and drop their pizza. The pizza lands on the ground okay, but it becomes ruined when the banana pudding falls on top of it. Doug and Patti set the banana pudding-covered pizza on the counter and walk away disappointed. Skeeter wakes up to the smell and runs to Doug and Patti, telling them how great their banana pizza is and that everyone loves it. Ms. Wingo gives Doug and Patti accolade for their dish, saying that it is creative and original. When asked how they came up with it, Doug responds that it was an accident. Doug is later at home eating his banana, using pizza sauce as dip while writing in his journal about how everyone loved his and Patti’s banana pizza and that Patti said they made a great team. Doug then asks Porkchop how the pizza that is getting cooked is coming and it starts to overflow from the oven. The episode ends with Doug and Porkchop running from the overflowing dough that floods the house. In Doug loses Dale, Doug promises Skeeter that he would babysit Dale… that menace. I would have never. Doug is hanging out with Skeeter at the playground. Skeeter explains that he’s going to a tugboat captain picnic with his parents and he needs a babysitter to look after his baby brother Dale since he’s too young to go and the family just found out that their regular babysitter is sick. So he asks Doug, who is a novice at babysitting, to look after Dale. Later, Doug goes to Judy for babysitting advice. Judy tells him to understand a child, he has to become a child. She then offers Doug a clown mask, which he thinks is perfect. Also, at the Honker Burger, he also asks for some babysitting advice from his friends, who give him different tips. Beebe tells him to give the children what they want, Connie, who babysat a lot, says that a kid should be offered coloring books and crayons, and Chalky tells him that sweets would work. Roger, however, tells Doug that he would need a good lawyer after he messes up. During the day of the picnic, the Valentine family give Doug a list of things to do while babysitting Dale and drive off. Doug and Porkchop are left home alone with Dale, who is still frustrated over his family’s absence. After listening to Judy’s thoughts in his head, Doug uses the clown mask Judy offered him, which frightens the toddler as he hides behind the television. (Judy tried.) Doug then hears Chalky’s thoughts in his head and gives Dale some of Mr. Swirly’s Butter Brickle Ice Cream. As Doug tries to feed Dale the ice cream, Dale ends up making a mess and Doug changes him, only to find out that Dale likes none of the outfits he’s offered to. So after hearing Beebe’s thoughts in his head, Doug lets Dale pick his own clothing and leaves the room. As Doug returns into the room moments later, he finds that the toddler has made a mess. Doug changes him into casual clothing and colors with him in his coloring book after hearing Connie’s thoughts in his head. He later watches “Uncle Grunty,” a children’s television program, along with Dale. The telephone rings and Doug answers it to find out that it is Ms. Valentine. Doug tells her that he is coloring with Dale right before the mother reminds him that Dale shouldn’t color on his own due to him writing on the walls, which he predictably does. Doug quickly stops Dale and snatches the crayon from his hand, prompting him to wail. After Doug and Porkchop cleaned up the walls, he feels that he was probably a little hard on Dale. But when he searches for him, he discovers that Dale is missing and goes on an exhaustive search for him around the house. When he can’t find him, Doug then gets Roger’s thoughts in his head. Doug then realizes that his mistake was listening to every futile advice he was given. He decides to do it his way (which seems a little late since he has lost the child), only to discover that the Valentine family are on their way home. Doug thinks as a toddler and reminisces on his younger years when he hid in the basement inside the laundry hamper from Judy, giving Doug an idea. As Doug searches in the dirty clothes basket, he successfully finds Dale in the basket just in time for the Valentine family to come back. Mr. Valentine pays him and makes him their “number one babysitter,” which a skeptical Doug thinks about. Doug is later seen in his room writing in his journal and states that he learned that even though he can depend on his friends to give him advice, he has to do things his way sometimes. Check it out: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jIMaASaBmLk)

  • Doug’s Hot Ticket/Doug’s Dental Disaster – The Beets concert in Bloatsburg is sold out, and luckily Judy has two tickets which she doesn’t want. Judy gives Doug her tickets and he and Skeeter set out on an incredible adventure on the road and end up as Beets roadies when they meet other fans. in the beginning, Doug, Porkchop, and Skeeter are walking down the street singing the Beets. They approach a ticket booth to get tickets to a Beets concert at Bloatsberg, only to discover that the line is very long. Skeeter fears that the long line will squelch the friends’ attempt to make the best Beets concert in the world. Later, Doug is in his room in disappointment, upset that the concert is now sold out. But he is saved when Judy comes into his room and offers him two tickets to the concert, which her date offered her, telling Doug to paint her entire room black in return. Doug calls Skeeter and tells him about the two tickets Judy has offered him. Doug then asks Skeeter how the two would get all the way to Bloatsberg, and Judy reminds him that his parents wouldn’t allow him to take such a trip so far away. (So she gave him tickets to a show she knew he couldn’t go to.) Skeeter suggests that they should take the K-Bluff Beets Bus there. (Does this happen? Seems like a great idea to me.) When the bus arrives, Doug and Skeeter turn over their parents permission slips and where they encounter a number of Beets fans inside. While Charlene tells Doug and Skeeter her stories of truck driving, Frizzy goes to the bus to check on the other Beets fans, reminding the two friends not to be late. Doug and Skeeter become impressed when Charlene has told her story of how she actually wrestled an alligator out of the front seat of her vehicle and got the blood supply to the hospital on time. Charlene later leaves the diner to get in her truck to ride the open road. He and Skeeter then discover that they had let more than ten minutes elapse and find that they had missed the bus. (Now… I have been on several trips… We have never left someone behind… and they are kids too.) Doug and Skeeter are now stuck in the middle of nowhere, and Skeeter suggests that the two should call their parents. But Doug, knowing what Judy told him during his phone call with Skeeter earlier, refuses, for his parents might never trust him to go on his own again. Doug then suggests that the two could try walking to Bloatsberg. A sheriff named Melvin Hayes overhears this and wonders what Doug and Skeeter are doing inside the diner at 7:40 PM, meaning that the Beets concert starts in twenty minutes. When the sheriff realizes that the two are on their way to the Beets concert, he decides to give them a ride to the concert. While driving, Sheriff Hayes tells Doug and Skeeter that he was a Beets fan himself when the band was making basement tapes in his basement. He also adds that they were singing about his sock with the single “Where’s My Sock?” Doug and Skeeter finally make it to the concert. Unfortunately, they discover that they had left their tickets at the diner, and they get the premonition that they will miss the concert for sure. But to their relief, they find out that the Beets are just picking up their equipment and that they didn’t miss the concert yet. The Beets offer Doug and Skeeter two backstage passes and have them help them carry their equipment out of the truck and to the stage. Doug and Skeeter are amazed of carrying the band’s instruments. It is revealed that the Beets were on delay for a while, and the band performs their latest single “Shout Your Lungs Out.” Doug and Skeeter watch in delight and say that it is the best concert they have ever been to. In Doug’s Dental Disaster, Doug’s tooth hurts when he gets a cavity after biting into a candy bar at the movies, and afterwards has to go to his dentist. Although he doesn’t want to go to the appointment, he daydreams how Secret Agent Smash Adams would handle a dental situation. The episode starts off with Smash Adams tiptoeing through the house and encountering a fireplace. He uses a secret switch, which activates the wall, causing it to rotate by virtue of a secret switch. Smash enters a mysterious cave and presses a green button under a television screen, revealing villain Dr. Decay. The villain activates a trap door, which Smash Adams is standing under. The secret agent falls through the trap door and lands on the dental chair, which he is strapped in. It is revealed that it is a movie Doug and Skeeter are watching at the movie theater. Doug bites into his chocolate bar and painfully gets a toothache. When he runs into the bathroom to take a look at it through the mirror, he discovers that he has a sore tooth. (Now people would think that kids would reveal to the adult in their lives they are in pain. But no.) At the Honker Burger, Skeeter takes a look of Doug’s teeth and tells Doug that he has a cavity. When his friends tell him that he would have to go to a dentist to get it filled, Doug explains that the dentist “give him the willies.” Patti tries to convince him that it won’t be bad. But when Doug asks her how many cavities she had, she says that she hasn’t had one yet and would be scared of the drilling and the needles, demoralizing Doug. (Patti is usually better than this… but *Shrug*) Roger enters and makes things worse… While Doug sits on his front porch, he decides to make the pain dissipate on its own. But when he asks Mr. Dink if he had a cavity before, Mr. Dink informs him that he had so many cavities that he lost all of his teeth and had them replaced with titanium steel dentures. Cognizant of how ignoring his cavity would cause impending risks, Doug becomes encouraged to circumvent the same fate by going to the dentist to fill up his sore tooth. At the dentist, Doug waits in the waiting room and notices Dr. Kay’s framed diploma from dental school on the wall and realizes that maybe the dentist won’t be bad after all. He is then guided to the hallway by a dental assistant and becomes a bit apprehensive when he hears a patience screaming. Doug states in his head that he never expected it to be as bad as it would turn out and that even Smash Adams would think twice about it. When Doug is guided inside Dr. Kay’s dental room, he relaxes in a dental chair to wait for the dentist. Doug feels nervous as he takes a look around the room and Dr. Kay, revealed to be a female dentist, arrives. The dentist prepares to fill up his bad tooth as Doug waits for the procedure. After Dr. Kay finishes, Doug feels great, admitting that it wasn’t that bad. Dr. Kay tells Doug that he is her best patient due to how calm he was in comparison to the other patients who go to the dentist. Just then, Roger cowardly emerges inside the room in fear, hiding from Dr. Kay, despite the fact that she is only going to clean his teeth. He panickily dashes out of the room and cowardly runs away screaming. Doug states that Roger has a “super-low threshold of pain” and he and Dr. Kay start laughing. Check it out: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJVx1qLz6XU)
  • Doug’s Lost Weekend/Doug’s Lucky Hat – Doug’s Journal Entry: Dear Journal, it was the most typical day ever. Little did I know, I was about to have a rendezvous with destiny. I was about to become…a ten-thousandth customer. I don’t think things like that actually happen… oug and Skeeter are at the shop Computer Junkie at the mall. Doug becomes the ten-thousandth customer after picking up a video game system and wins a video game system called Super Pretendo, which includes the game Space Munks. Doug and Skeeter set it up at his house and Doug begins playing. This quickly get out of hand though. Doug eventually dies on his first try, as indicated by the coffin-shaped spaceship taking off on the screen. So Skeeter gets a turn on the game and soon, he and Skeeter spend the rest of the day trying to beat the game. The next scene shows Doug in classroom losing concentration in class thanks to his new video game getting into his head. Ms. Wingo asks Doug to answer a question he didn’t pay attention to, prompting him to look into his book and respond “the governor.” Ms. Wingo reminds him that the question was what clogs up the Noodle River and Roger laughs at his incorrect answer. Doug imagines himself destroying Roger video game style and Ms. Wingo explains that the imminent class report on silt is due Monday. (Addiction at work.) When class ends, Doug runs home to beat the game. Doug finds that Judy has changed the channel to watch Shakespeare on Ice (as usual). Skeeter heads home to do his report, and Doug decides to get started on his report right away. He tells Skeeter has a few pages, then, in narration, says, “The thing I didn’t tell Skeeter was that my few pages were all blank”. He has trouble concentrating on his work and starts getting imaginations of himself in the game. At three o’clock in the morning, he struggles to fall asleep. So he goes to the living room and plays the game until six in the morning. He can barely stay awake in school and is looking forward to the weekend for uninterrupted hours to play his game. Patti then comes around and offers Doug to study and work in reports at the library with her this weekend, but Doug is too drowsy to listen to her words coherently (he visualizes several spaceships encircling her head) and agrees right before going home to play his game. Doug loses track of time as he continues to play the game all weekend. The lost weekend is underway. At one point, Skeeter even comes over and Doug continues to beat the game himself. (Since he doesn’t share the game at all withe either Skeeter or porkchop.) To add insult to injury, Doug struggles to get his report done every time he looks at it. As he plays the game through the weekend, he finally destroys the chipmunk mother ship, much to his delight. Since Doug has nothing else to do, he tries to get started on his report, only to fall asleep when doing so. When he discovers that it is ten o’clock and he has overslept the next day, he wakes up and hurries off to school, only to discover that no one is outside and he is convinced that everyone was already in class. To make matters worse, his report is not finished (all he has written is “Silt: A Report By Doug Funnie. Silt is…”) Just then, Mr. Bone walks by while carrying books. Skeeter is also there. Seeing Mr. Bone, Doug hides inside a dumpster full of papers and tells Skeeter to join him inside. He complies. Doug explains his messed-up situation to Skeeter, and that Skeeter should go to class without him. But as the two climb out of the dumpster, Skeeter tells him that today is Sunday and that Doug had lost track of time of the days due to having his mind focused on the game. Relieved, Doug finishes his report at the library with Patti. In Doug’s Lucky Hat, A mysterious blue hat is seen flying through the windy sky. The hat lands on the pavement next to Doug’s feet and Doug picks it up. He wonders who it belongs to, and Connie tells him “finders keepers.” Skeeter tells him to try it on and Doug complies. When he trips, he finds a Sky Davis trading card missing from his collection, much to his delight. In Doug’s room, Skeeter convinces Doug that the hat he has found is lucky. But Doug denies that the hat has such luck, saying that he doesn’t believe in luck and that finding the Sky Davis trading card was only a coincidence. Then, through the radio, the announcer announces that the lucky caller number 23 will receive the latest autograph Beets CD. So Doug calls, wearing his new hat, and becomes the caller to receive the album. His luck becomes better when his mother finds his Smash Adams triple 3D X-ray glasses while sorting the laundry. It isn’t long before Doug finally admits that the hat is really lucky. (Do you believe in luck? It does seem like Doug is having a heck of a time.) The next day in school, Doug wonders what good his new, lucky hat would do him.  Doug discovers that Patti has lost her pet guinea pig Hamlet in the school when she brought him over for her report on how guinea pigs protect the ozone layer. Doug, Skeeter, and Patti go through a search around the school and when they go outside, his lucky hat blows away. He chases after it and the hat lands in a serving of salad in the cafeteria, where Hamlet is found as well. When Doug returns Hamlet to Patti, she thanks Doug for his help and she walks to Mr. Ogie’s class. As Doug and Skeeter talk about the lucky hat, Roger overhears this and decides to get his hands on the hat. Because Roger is a jerk. Doug is impressed of all the luck the hat has giving him and decides to never take it off, even in the shower. The lucky streak continues with Doug getting lots of gumballs from the machine with one coin, winning a large prize at the carnival, and catching a flyball during a baseball game. Later, at the Honker Burger, Doug and Skeeter are sitting at the table together, and Patti comes around to ask Doug why he is always wearing his hat on his head. Doug tries to hide the fact that it is lucky since he feels that she wouldn’t believe that such a hat would cause on person such luck. Skeeter tells Patti that the hat is lucky and Doug says that he doesn’t believe in luck. Just then, Roger comes around and snatches Doug’s hat off his head. He also compels Doug to prove that the hat isn’t lucky. So Doug lets Roger borrow the hat, which Roger tells him that he can have back after his biology test. You ever det the feeling during the show that Doug is too nice. I get that this is a kids show but goodness does Roger deserves a punch in the face. The next day, in class, Doug feels that his brain isn’t functioning properly and Roger grins back at him smugly while taking the biology test. After class, Doug walks outside of the school building, sitting on the steps while moping. Patti, worried about him, comes to his side and Doug admits that he really did believe his hat was lucky and that it made him feel like a winner when we was wearing it. Patti assures him that he doesn’t need a hat to make him feel lucky, and that he’s still a great guy with or without it. Suddenly, Roger shows up and flaunts his biology test, which he got a D- on. He then tells Doug that his hat is his new thinking cap and that he will wear it for a long time, despite the fact that the lucky hat didn’t have much effect on him. His smug mood, however, dissipates when a gust of wind blows away the hat off his head. Doug is about to follow Roger to chase after it, but then decides to let it fly away instead, saying that he will give someone else a turn. The episode concludes with Doug stating that will never know if the hat was lucky or not, but he will also remember how it made him feel, and if the hat does return, he will be ready to grab it again. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90hf_P5fTDM)

  • Doug is Slave for a Day/Doug Rocks the House – Judy catches Doug breaking a vase that belonged to their mom. To keep her quiet, Doug must agree to be her slave for a week. Doug is watching a game with Porkchop. Doug and Porkchop play the game in the house. While playing catch, Doug causes the ball to bounce off his fingers and hit his mother’s vase. As the vase falls off the shelf, Doug attempts to catch it, and the vase shatters to pieces as it lands on the floor. Judy catches this and Doug begs her not to tell their mother. Judy has Doug sign a contract to become her slave for a week starting Saturday at four o’clock. He washes the dishes for her, pours her a glass of fruit juice, and cleans her room. By the next day, Doug becomes exhausted and Judy takes advantage of him by having him do the most assiduous and absurd work. When Doug tells Judy that she is going too far, Judy once again attempts to blackmail Doug by telling their mother, only for Doug to finally give in and do her chores out of deference. Skeeter comes to visit and finds Doug in Judy’s room wearing her dress while rolling on the floor, “Bohemianizing” it. Doug tells him about working for Judy and that he is relieved because it’s only for one more day. When Judy comes around, however, she informs him that he can’t whistle while working in proximity to her (which she said he did while re-skinning her bongos, but Doug claims that his nose was actually wheezing), and to make up for the broken rule, he must serve another week of slavery. So Doug, Porkchop, and Skeeter then work together to do Judy’s dirty work. (This is a bit overboard.) The next day, Theda tells Judy that she has to clear her costumes out of the basement before she attends her party, to which Judy responds that it needs a scrub down as well. Doug overhears this and is distraught because he knows that he’ll the one doing it. Angered that the contract may have Doug be Judy’s slave forever, he reads the contract again. As Doug reads the contract, he finally discovers how to free himself from it. When Judy comes inside Doug’s room to order him to clear the costumes in the basement, Doug tells her that he has already told his mother what happened (she didn’t really care about it), which resulted in him getting grounded for a week for not telling her sooner. Because of this, the contract is now void and he is no longer Judy’s slave. Judy begs Doug to clear her costumes out of the basement so she can go to her party, saying that she would do anything. The next day, it is implied that Doug has done Judy’s job yesterday and Judy is now Doug’s slave for the week that he’s grounded. Doug has her turn each page of his comic book he is reading while he is in bed and makes her do a list of his chores as well. (She really took it too far over a vase.) In Doug Rocks the House, hile Doug and Skeeter head to school, they run into Roger and his gang, who are throwing stones at an old, dilapidated house. When Roger throws a stone at it, the house doesn’t not a lot happens. So he offers Doug a stone to throw at the house. Doug hesitates and says that he would do it if he had permission. A construction worker comes around and allows it, saying that the house is history. So Doug tosses a stone at the house and the impact of the stone ricocheting through the walls causes the whole house to tumble down, destroying it completely. The gang congratulates Doug for this, but when Patti comes around and witnesses the damage done, she says that Doug is “terrible.” At school, Doug thinks about why Patti was upset at him. Kids start asking him to sign their rocks… and Doug is no closer to the truth. Doug then discovers Patti talking to Beebe and walks up to her to apologize. Patti cuts him off and apologizes to Doug for getting mad at him. Doug is relieved and says that all he did was knock down “some crudy, old house,” which causes Patti to revert back to her anger and walk away right after yelling at Doug. At lunch, when Patti is paying for her lunch, the lunch lady tells her that Doug has bought her lunch for her. But Patti looks at him with contempt and walks off, confusing Doug. Doug asks Beebe what Patti said, but Beebe refuses, telling him that she can’t tell because she’s not speaking to him. So Doug decides to search for Patti himself. He finds Patti at her locker and tries to ask her what is going on. Patti tells him that there isn’t anything left to discuss. Doug gets exasperated with Patti’s attitude and starts arguing back, agreeing not to talk to her anymore and the two end up getting into a verbal altercation right before Patti finally leaves. When Skeeter comes around, he and Doug find a photo of Patti and her friends hanging out by her old house. Doug notes that the doorway looks familiar, and Skeeter reveals that Patti’s old house is the same house he destroyed. (I get why Patti is upset… But Doug didn’t know anything about it. And it was set to be destroyed.) Skeeter tells Doug that Patti and her father moved out of the house after her mother’s death two years ago. When at home, Doug tries to reason with himself that Patti is still in the wrong to get angry, saying to himself that he could see someone getting mad at another person for destroying their house while they are inside. He then spots the framed height chart from the Funnie’s old house back in Bloatsberg and gets vivid memories of himself in his younger years being measured with the height chart. Doug then knows how Patti feels and decides he needs to apologize. He goes back to the spot where the wrecked house has been and tries to figure out something he can find to remember her old house by. Porkchop is the one to find something for Patti. The two go to Patti’s house. Her father answers the door and is friendly to Doug, but tells him she isn’t feeling well. So Doug leaves, only to get stopped by Patti, who runs after him. Doug apologizes to Patti, saying he had no intention of wrecking her old house, but she interrupts him and apologizes herself. Patti then notices a door knocker in Doug’s hand. He tells her he got it for her to remember her old house, only for it to turn out have the Pattersons inscribed on it. She tells him that they were her next-door neighbors and Doug feels like an idiot. When she wants to keep it, he asks if it is to remind her of how stupid he is, and she says, no, to remind her of how sweet Doug is, hugging him in the process. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3kfRL7yKFUo)

  • Doug’s Cool Shoes –  Doug and his friends playing basketball against Roger and his gang. Doug is about to shoot a free throw and his team is down one point. Roger insults Doug’s plain shoes to distract him while shooting his free throw. Doug does miss the shot, as well as the ball hitting his head. Doug then realizes how shoes can give a person a headache. (Doug does like to overreact for a 11 year old.) When Doug then feels that he really does need a pair of new shows, he finds Mr. Dink rocking new shoes of his own, which turns out to be computerized too. (Does Dink know how to work any of the stuff he pays for? He was my first introduction to a hoarder.)  Doug continues to watch the commercial as the famous basketball player announces that he would be at Four Leaf Clover Mall to autograph his purchased sneakers for the customers. The next day, Doug brings Porkchop along to go to the shoe store and attempts to purchase a pair of Sky Davis Air Jets. The clerk first removes Doug’s old shoes off his feet and places them in a box. She measures Doug’s foot size and runs off to get the famous Air Jets. Doug already begins to miss his old shoes and feels as though he is betraying them. The shoe store clerk returns and offers Doug a final pair of Sky Davis Air Jets, which are too big to fit Doug’s feet. As he walks with the shoes on, Doug starts to feel skeptical at first, but feels like a new man in a new pair of Air Jets. Unfortunately, he only has half the price of the shoes and can’t purchase them. At the end, Roger ends up with the shoes instead, leaving Doug back to his old shoes. As Doug sits outside on the bench moping the next day, Sky Davis (who’s actual name is Chuck) then comes around and compliments Doug’s old sneakers. Doug notices that Chuck is wearing his regular shoes rather than his famous Air Jets, and the latter explains that his regular sneakers are his off-court buddies and that he will never get rid of them no matter what. He autographs Doug’s shoes and Doug reciprocates him by autographing his as well. Roger later challenges Doug one a one-on-one game (while rocking his new Sky Davis Air Jets) and he trips while attempting to hit a shot due to the size of the shoes. Doug grabs the ball and runs to the basket. He hits the shot as his friends cheer for him.

  • Doug’s Dinner Date – Patti invites Doug over for dinner with the rest of the gang and Doug is thrilled. It’s a dream come true for Doug until Patti tells Doug she will be serving liver and onions (one of Doug’s most hated foods). Doug tries everything (including hypnosis) to overcome his fear. Patti invites Doug over for dinner Sunday night. Doug is delight, but soon discovers that it’s a group dinner. She also tells him that they are serving liver and onions, which Doug has a blatant aversion towards. So he asks Skeeter to help him practice eating it and invites him over to dinner with his family, adding that he’ll have his mother making him liver tonight. But during the dinner, Doug struggles to try it and just sits there poking at the liver. Doug then realizes that he’s not ready to try the liver and onions yet and excuses himself from the table. In Doug’s room, Skeeter tries to hypnotize him into liking liver and onions, telling him that when he sees liver and onions, he would just see Honker dogs and fries. Doug only manages to hallucinate and see Skeeter as a Honker dog instead. Doug then decides that he has had enough liver and onions for tonight. Doug gets advice from Judy instead. While in her room, Judy suggests that Doug should look through the perspective of the food to understand it. But Doug feels that this isn’t working, and Judy tells him that she has never known anyone getting hysterical over dinner. Later, the night before Patti’s dinner, the Funnie family have dinner at Cowboy Jacques’ House of Boeuf, an Old West-themed restaurant with French staff. (Odd? Yes as odd as it sounds.) After consulting the menu, Doug orders #47 (liver and onions), much to the shock of the customers and Rudy, the waiter. When Doug is presented with his order, he gives it a taste and likes it. He imagines himself as Patti’s prince and outside of his imagination, he gains cheers from everyone at the restaurant. The next day, Doug and Skeeter are walking to Patti’s house and Skeeter is impressed by Doug’s bravery. They arrive at Patti’s house and prepare to have dinner, but Doug, eager to try the liver and onions Patti said she was serving, finds out that Patti was just only joking and she says that she knew about his aversion towards them through his “Things I Hate Most” oral speech in class. He later discovers that they are having Honker dogs and fries instead. A confused Doug once again hallucinates, seeing everyone as Honker dogs right before fainting out of his chair. Poor Doug did all this work for no reason. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HOTmr0kf31E)

  • Doug on First – Patti’s Pulverizers are playing against their opponent in a baseball game. One of the players hit a ball and the Pulverizers get a double out on the other team. Patti, the pitcher of the team, strikes out another player on the opposing team, winning the game for the Pulverizers. Doug talks about his game to his parents, but they and the other parents are having a discussion about replacing Patti for someone else as pitcher. Doug walks away upset. (The kids have a system that works. Leave it to parents to ruin things. Doug states voice-over that the parents decided to manage the team themselves since they believe that the kids do not have any maturity to manage it on their own. In the Funnie house, the parents discuss on how to run the Pulverizers, while Doug and Skeeter eavesdrop. Theda suggests that the team should take turns pitching instead, which Doug and Skeeter believe will do no good since the Pulverizers are playing against the Honkers. The next day, Doug practices pitching with his father, which Phil calls the “Funnie Fireball”, a pitch that has been in his family for generations. When Doug practices his pitch the first time, he throws it too high and ends up accidentally hitting Mr. Dink in the head. Mr. Dink returns the ball to Doug and Phil.  Doug tries to convince his father to let him play first baseman instead, but Phil shows him his picture of his team, the Bloatsberg Killer Weevils baseball team, where he was their number-two pitcher. He tells Doug that he was born to pitch and that it’s in the Funnie blood, but Doug is not motivated one bit and wants to stay on first base instead. Doug, Skeeter, and Patti are then seen walking home after practice; Skeeter returns to his house. Doug tells Patti how unfair it was for the adults to interfere with their team’s decision, but Patti suggests that the others should learn how to pitch before their game against the Honkers. Doug fills with determination and feels that he probably can pitch. During the baseball game against the Honkers, Connie is revealed to be the pitcher of the team, and attempts to pitch a number of balls, but fails. So Skeeter takes her place as pitcher instead, but ends up pitching easy home runs. Doug is now on the pitcher mound and Roger mocks his pitching skills as he comes up to bat. Realizing that he is no pitcher and is instead a first baseman, Doug finally calls timeout and has Patti take his place as pitcher. She ends up striking Roger all out all three strikes, as well as the rest of the Honkers, and her team comes back to take the lead. In the final inning, one of the Honkers’ players hits the ball and the shortstop catches the fly ball, giving the Pulverizers the victory over the Honkers, their first over them!

Disney took over for Doug after Nickelodeon canceled it. For a minute, it was rebranded as Brand Spankin’ New Doug! As a kid, I am not sure I gave it the proper chance. I hated the new theme song and that it was on a new channel with a new lineup. It joined the One Saturday Morning block along with newcomers Recess and Pepper Ann. The show takes place a few months after the Nickelodeon show’s series finale, “Doug Graduates/Doug’s Bad Trip”, where Doug and his friends graduate from Bluffington Elementary School as sixth graders, and begin their first year at Beebe Bluff Middle School, as seventh graders. Like the original show, it deals with the everyday life of socially awkward yet warmhearted Doug Funnie.  The show ended in 1999 with sixty-five episodes, which is the episode limit for most of Disney’s TV shows.

There were several changes made to the Disney Doug. Now that I am an adult… I am looking at the list of things and realizing it is not that big of a deal. For Example:

  • The characters are now attending Beebe Bluff Middle School, having graduated from Bluffington School at the end of the Nickelodeon series.
  • Skunky Beaumont, a character often mentioned but never appearing in the Nick series outside of one off-screen speaking role, becomes a major character in the show.
  • Roger has gone from a bully living in a trailer park to a rich kid and rival to Beebe.
  • Connie has lost significant weight.
  • Most of the characters get new outfits.
  • The Honker Burger has been sold and has turned into Chez Honque, a French restaurant, but Doug and the gang didn’t have to worry; in “Doug’s New School”, Mr. Swirly opened an ice cream parlor which becomes the new hangout for them.
  • The Beets, Doug and his friends’ favorite band, have broken up.
  • Tippi Dink becomes the new mayor, surpassing stereotypical politician Robert “Bob” White.
  • The episodes consist of one 30 minute (plus commercials) story, while the Nickelodeon series had episodes consisting of two 12 minute stories (with the exception of the first episode and the Halloween and Christmas specials). (I think that structure is a bit better.)

So I picked a few of the episodes I enjoyed the most from under the Disney Banner. I was mildly surprised that it felt much the same as the original. But let’s jump into it.

  • Doug’s Last Birthday – In the Disney series premiere, Doug’s fears about the changes that are happening in life make him think about canceling his birthday parties. The summer is coming to a close and Doug is delivering invitations for his 12th birthday party to all his friends. While he goes all around town, he discovers that Bluffington (as well as his friends) have been through changes. Change is hard. Especially when we are younger. The Honker Burger is changed into a French restaurant called Chez Honque, Roger is rich, The Beets are breaking up, a new Middle School is being built, Connie has lost weight, Patti is being home schooled in the mornings. But later, Judy makes him realize that changes make us different from rocks, and Doug reinstates his party just in time to hear that his mom is pregnant.

  • Doug’s New School – It’s the first day of seventh grade at the new middle school which still does not have a name, so a “Name Your School” student contest is created by the former Mayor White who is now the school’s principal. The contest causes fierce competition between Patti and Doug when they don’t like each other’s school name suggestions. (They are both equally bad.) Doug meets all his teachers including his homeroom and English teacher Ms. Krystal, and during breaks, the students realize the school isn’t quite finished yet. This becomes a running gag… I am not sure about these parents… because I would want to understand why I am being told my child is going to a school that is not done. Also, the gang is on the search for the perfect new hangout since the Honker Burger is now Chez Honque. They end up choosing Mr. Swirly’s. The school ends up being named after Beebe Bluff… and really they should have seen that coming. My favorite part of the episode is where Skunky Beaumont makes an appearance. All of the kids are racing to windows to get a glimpse of the kid.

  • Doug’s Hoop Nightmare – Doug gets a letter from Bolivia… and the family is curious as to who he knows in Bolivia. Doug’s explanation involves the previous summer, where Doug went to the Grinning Bear Sports Camp with Patti. Doug was really excited about his summer vacation. He wanted to be super organized for summer to get the most out of it. He’s planned out the first half of his day, which is almost over as he’s checking off items on the list. His day, and summer, falls apart completely at noon when he finds out Skeeter was accepted to Camp Einstein last night and had to rush off this morning. At home, Doug’s parents suggest he go to a summer camp because all his friends have gone to camp. He decides to follow Patti to sport’s camp and nothing could have a been a worst idea. Meantime, Doug’s asthmatic cabinmate Leonard, who has made a career of escaping summer camps, plans yet another escape. However, Doug, Chalky, and Patti have to worry about the upcoming basketball game they have to play against a tougher camp. Doug has no skills to speak of. When Patti tries to help him… and shrugs off her help in favor of looking cool and almost tanks the teams chances. They pull out a win in the second half… but who sent Doug the letter? Well it is from Leonard. It may be several months later, and school may have started weeks ago, but Leonard finally escaped that awful two week camp and Coach Spitz will never find him. Well not really. Coach Spitz is sitting behind him.

  • Doug’s in Debt! – Doug has borrowed a costume from Judy to give his report. Doug has to start working on his history project. He hasn’t decided who the subject will be. Doug says it has to be an important historical figure. It can’t be about his dog. He figures to dig through Judy’s stuff to get an idea. He bases his decision on the costume he finds. Napoleon. Before he can do much of anything, Judy runs into the room, grabs the costume, throws it into the trunk, and slams it shut. She reminds him that he is forbidden to touch her costumes and kicks him out of her room. He starts begging because adding a costume to his project guarantees him an A. She refuses, saying the costume is expensive and irreplaceable. Doug says he’ll guard it with his life. They get into a repetitive argument that brings their mother to tears. Judy allows Doug to borrow the costume, but he has to sign a contract. Doug doesn’t even read the contract before signing it and taking the costume. The contract states if she doesn’t get her Hat back, Doug would do her shows forever.  He’s excited about getting an A. But the contract states At school, Doug finishes up his oral report on the Battle of Waterloo before introducing Napoleon Bonapart. After school, Doug is walking home when Skeeter spots him and tells him they need a goalie. Without asking which sport they were playing, Doug says, “cool,” and throws his stuff on the ground before running off to the basketball court. The wind blows the hat away immediately. Later, Skeeter compliments Doug on the game. He says he’s never seen someone stop so many goals with his face. Upon returning to his abandoned stuff, Doug complains that someone has kicked dirt onto the coat, and oh no, the hat is gone! (Why didn’t he take better care of stuff? Judy not wanting him to use her things was warranted.) Roger finds it and won’t give it back to Doug. In order to get the hat back from Roger, he asks Doug to do many favors including stealing a plastic cow. After all the favors are done, Roger still refuses to give the hat back. Since Doug can’t return the hat to Judy, he must suffer the consequences. After Doug tells Judy that Roger won’t give the hat back to her, Judy takes the hat from Roger. With Judy getting her hat back by herself, Doug believed he would do her shows forever, until her friend revealed a loophole in the contract stating that as long as Judy got the hat (With or Without Doug getting it himself) he’s off the hook, legally. While Doug was happy that he didn’t have to do her shows, He notice that with Doug in the play, her show would be ruin and he agreed to be in that one show.

  • Doug’s Movie Madness – After Doug and Skeeter see a commercial for the new movie Targetman, they desperately want to see it. Soon, all of Doug’s friends and even his teachers are talking about Targetman. When Doug tells his parents he wants to see it, they don’t allow him because it is way too violent and they feel Doug is not mature enough to see it. Been there done that. Who wants to be the only kid who hasn’t seen what everyone is talking about at school? Although, adult me knows exactly why Doug and friends should not see Target man.  Doug tries to be more mature in front of his parents in order for them to let him see the movie, but they still say no. Roger who has spent most of the episode talking about how Doug need permission from his parents and would never get it… didn’t get permission from his dad to see it. Doug goes with Skeeter to see the movie anyway, only to regret it later on. His parents are right… it is too violent. And it gives doug nightmares. Doug ends up grounded after he admits seeing the movie without their permission.

  • Doug: The Big Switch – Doug is watching Dr. Cop, but is called by mom Theda and runs into dad Phil. By the time Doug returns, his sister Judy munches on popcorn and watches the Shakespeare on Ice show. Doug and Judy wrestle for the remote on the floor, but Phil wins. Doug spends the next day complaining that his life is hard. He tells Patti that she must have it easy since she gets homeschooled. Annoyed… Patti points out that her life is pretty difficult. This sparks several other comparisons… Like Roger and Chalky as well as Skeeter and Beebe.  In the switch for a day, Doug switches places with Patti, Skeeter switches places with Beebe, and Chalky switches places with Roger. At Skeeter’s house, Beebe tries to babysit Dale, and Skeeter orders a banana sandwich at Beebe’s house, but picks up two forks. At Doug’s house, Patti watches Theda clean the house, and at Patti’s house, Doug is homeschooled by Patti’s dad. Finally, Doug sneaks past Mr. Mayonnaise and bolts for home, but runs into Patti. Chalky gets lost in Roger’s house while Roger is overworked by Chalky’s dad. They all go running for the hills. They all come running back to their houses with a new appreciation of others.

  • Doug Gets His Wish – Poor Doug…. He has graduated from elementary school and no shade to Mrs. Wingo… but the middle school homework is a beast. Ms. Kristal gives so much of it.  Willie tells his dad that he and his classmates haven’t learned anything from Ms. Kristal, and besides, she didn’t vote for him when he was mayor. Ms. Kristal is fired and Principal White takes over. As a result, Doug gets his wish, because Principal White’s idea of teaching (and homework) is reading comic books. Everyone loves it except Skeeter. He circulates a petition to get Ms. Kristal back, but his classmates are enjoying the break from homework and refuse to sign the petition. Skeeter manages to get only two signatures on the petition – his own and Doug’s (who only signs out of loyalty to Skeeter) – and throws it away. Soon Principal White puts Willie in charge of the class, and he turns into a tyrant, suspending Skeeter and forcing the students to wait on him hand and foot. With that, the rest of the kids in Ms. Kristal’s class finally decide they want Ms. Kristal back. Doug takes up the case with Mayor Tippi Dink at a school board meeting and tricks Willie into admitting that Ms. Kristal was really a good teacher. As a result, Ms. Kristal is reinstated, and Mayor Dink asks Ms. Kristal to add a new student to her class—Principal White…

  • Doug’s Friend’s Friend – Everyone is excited about the new ride at Funky Town. Skeeter sees Patti and Beebe walking away from the new ride and tells Beebe they’re going the wrong way. Beebe says she’s not going on the Natural Disaster Blaster because it’s scary what a velocity 7 twister could do to her hair. Doug decides to invite them on the ride to make things less scary. (He doesn’t care about how Skeeter feels about it… as long as he can ride with Patti.) Doug and Patti get in a cart together while Beebe berates Skeeter. Skeeter just tries to tune out Beebe. Doug tries to make up for his rudeness during the rest of the week by suggesting fun activities to Skeeter. First, he has this telescope and wants to use it to find the Lucky Duck Monster. Skeeter makes an excuse. Doug suggests they watch a Smash Adams movie. Skeeter makes another excuse. Doug starts to realize that Skeeter has stopped hanging out with him. The excuses get more and more bizarre and Doug is determined to figure out who his friend is hanging out with. The kicker is when Doug asks Skeeter to watch Tidal Wave Madness. Skeeter says he’s busy, and also Tidal Wave Madness is plebeian. Doug takes great offense at this. Doug doesn’t know what plebeian means. In the library, he looks up the word. “Unrefined or vulgar. See: Tidal Wave Madness.” Doug accepts that Skeeter was right, then overhears Skeeter whispering about the movie. Doug finds Skeeter raving about Tidal Wave Madness to Skunky. Doug confronts him about this and Skeeter stammers and runs away. When he finally sees that Skeeter is hanging out with Beebe… Doug becomes a bit hostile. (I did not see that coming. Like even if you don’t get it… why are you being so mean to your friend?)  Doug is disgusted by Skeeter’s lovesick attitude and jealous of their friendship. Doug decides to fight back which ends up in the end of their friendship. Doug then decides that he is going to try and break them up. (So disappointing.) Elmo reminds Doug who got them together. Doug himself.

  • Doug’s Chubby Buddy – This episode was more of a cautionary tale. It was probably the first time that I saw an animated show take on this topic… (I remember seeing something on Full House about it.) Doug and Porkchop are just playing cards while Skeeter laments the lack of monster news in the latest Weekly Weird World. Patti catches up with them and asks if she can hang out with them. She says Beebe won’t do anything while Teen Heart Street is on. “It’s like she thinks everything stops at four o’clock!” Once they hear that it is 4 pm, they all abandon Patti to also go watch the show. Patti returns to Connie and Beebe. Patti, Connie, and Beebe also watch the awful show. Beebe declares it to be the best episode yet. (There was so much crazy nonsense in the show… )  A voice on the tv says, “stay tuned for a commercial that looks like a documentary.” The commercial defines fat as cushion from injury, or insulation to keep you warm, but then says, “for most of us, it’s just ugly, old fat.” Fat blobs glide on screen. Patti, Connie and Beebe all gasp. Another blob of fat drops down and stands up to introduce himself as Lardy. He’s a fat cell that’s been inside you for years. Lardy says there are two periods of your life where you grow a lot of fat cells. The first is in infancy, and the second is at puberty. This freaks the girls out. The model actor from the show is in this commercial and says, “it’s a sad fact of life that none of you will ever have a 9 inch waist, but now you can try, using my waist away diet kit!” The voice-over man says, “remember: your friends will never tell you when you’re fat.” (Nothing like seeing a satire of commercials that have been targeting women for years.) Patti says they’re just trying to make you think you’re fat because they’re selling that dumb product. Beebe disagrees. She warns Patti that if she’s not careful, she’ll look in the mirror and see Fatty instead of Patti. At lunch the next day, Patti is picking out her lunch when Guy makes her feel bad about her choice. She grabs a salad and he calls it rabbit food. “Puttin’ on a few LBs, huh?” He immediately assumes she’s on a diet. Patti walks by and Doug says hello. She asks him if he thinks she needs to lose some weight. Sarcastically, he says, “oh yeah. You’re huge.” He chuckles and Skeeter chuckles and Patti misses the sarcasm entirely. Patti then tries out for the school’s track team. Coach Spitz says he wants a team that is lean and mean. She approaches Connie and Beebe and says she’s going on a diet. Connie wants to lose weight too, so she’s also going on a diet. Beebe too. Apparently, they’re getting together for lunch now to show off their fat free lunches. Patti bought the Waist Away diet kit. Beebe is surprised she bought the kit. Patti says the actor is lame, but she is in good shape. Using the scale, she says, “this sandwich is a tad weighty, and she tosses half of the ingredients. Patti is tracking her running with her watch. She’s happy to have run for 30 minutes because it means she burned 250 calories. Patti continues exercising more and eating less. At lunch, she’s carrying a tray with an egg and a carrot right past Guy. At the weigh-in, Connie goes first. According to the scale, she lost one pound. Beebe steps onto the scale and is shocked by her seven pound difference. Connie and Patti are impressed until Beebe says she didn’t lose seven pounds; she gained seven pounds. Patti finally steps on the scales and finds that she met her goal to lose three pounds. Satisfied she’s meeting her goal, she gets back to running. (Sometimes, I ask… where are these kids parents. It is ridiculous.) At lunch the next day, Doug asks to sit with Patti. She’s making notes about her exercise and takes a short spray from a can labeled “Spraywich.”It is apparently her whole lunch. At the track, Doug tries to relay his concerns for Patti’s diet to the coach. The lazy, overweight man cuts him off, saying all athletes diet. Doug just doesn’t understand because he’s not an athlete. Doug suggests that she is getting carried away. Coach says they’d win more trophies if more athletes got carried away. Back at the track, Coach Spitz says the team will be the top five students from each grade. Patti eventually collapses… She says she doesn’t feel so good. He tells her to get carried away. Coach Spitz should be fucking fired. Ms. Kristal puts an end to Patti running… Ms. Kristal asks Patti if she’s eaten anything at all today. Patti says she hasn’t because she thought she’d be able to run faster that way. Ms. Kristal explains that your body needs protein, so when you don’t eat, your body starts eating itself and you lose strength rather than gaining it. Doug says that’s scary.

  • Doug’s Adventures On-Line – While surfing the internet on the Funnie family’s new computer to find music for the upcoming retro dance, Doug and Skeeter encounter Webster, a ‘kid’ they agree to meet to exchange some records. What the boys don’t know is that Webster is really ‘Friendly Frankie,’ a rather unscrupulous adult. Instead of meeting them, however, Webster/Frankie creates a distraction and steals their records. Horrified, Doug and Skeeter go back online and find similar records for sale at Friendly Frankie’s Used Records. At the store, when the boys try to talk to Frankie about their records, Doug and Skeeter find themselves in a bad situation. Mayor Dink and Mr. Dink rescue Doug and Skeeter and furiously confront Frankie, who is now a criminal. Meanwhile, Judy is online in the ‘Bluffington’s Pretentious Artists Chat Room’, where she meets a guy who uses the screen name ‘Leonardo D’Warhol’. Believing she has met the man of her dreams, Judy arranges a meeting in person only to discover that Leonardo is not quite the man she expected. It warns of the dangers of being online at a time when that was new for everyone.

So the rewatch of Doug was fun. It still holds up years later. Elementary and Middle school is pretty much the same no matter how much time passes. And I will say again that Disney’s version wasn’t bad… and not even all that different. The show holds up that honesty is the best policy which was definitely beneficial to me as a kid. The Disney portion is on Disney Plus… and I am sure the Nickelodeon version is on Paramount Plus, you can also get it on DVD. Let me know what you think about Doug.

Quarantine Post #72: Batman Beyond


So did I need more Kevin Conroy as Bruce Wayne? I did. Did I also want a future batman and a look at the future Gotham? Also yes. So I was thrilled to hear that the DCAU would explore more Batman content. I was not disappointed. Shoutout to HBO for having most of the DCAU collections. I have enjoyed my trip down memory lane. After 52 episodes spanning three seasons and one direct-to-video feature film, the series was brought to an end in favor of the Justice League animated series, and plans for a fourth season were canceled. Listen… as much as I enjoy the Justice League… I am sure that a 4th season would have been a great idea. (Also… I will get around to blogging about the Justice League too.) Depicting a teenaged Batman in a futuristic Gotham City under the tutelage of an elderly Bruce Wayne, Batman Beyond is chronologically the final series of the DC Animated Universe (despite being released before Static Shock, Justice League, and Justice League Unlimited), and serves as a continuation of both Batman: The Animated Series and The New Batman Adventures.

I forced my sister to watch this with me as part of a watch party. Is it nostalgia? It can’t be because I have already rewatched both Batman and Superman TAS and they did not disappoint. The DCAU never disappoints. The show is said to explore the darker side of many Batman projects, playing on key elements such as emotions, personal relations, fear of the unknown, as well as sci-fi themes such as the issues and dilemmas of innovation and technological and scientific progress affecting society, and the psychology of the character of Bruce Wayne. In addition, due to the titular character being a high school student, it includes issues that plague teenagers (substance abuse, subcultures, child abuse and neglect, school violence, peer pressure, etc.). The Batman universe is pretty dark. (I think I said in my post, that it was way darker than I remember.) Batman TAS is dark for a kid’s show so I was expecting more of the same. I knew it was going to be dark when we saw the intro.

Something about the fact that this story takes place in 2019… made me want to rewatch it even more. What is the obsession with flying cars? (Some stuff we don’t need.) The prologue initially begins in 2019 (set about 20 years after The New Batman Adventures, 17 years after Justice League, and 15 years after Justice League Unlimited). An aging Bruce Wayne, despite suffering from health complications continues to fight crime as Batman in a new high-tech Batsuit. I mean what is he like 80? seriously? He looks way old. One of my favorite things was telling Leah about Terry McGinnis… and her responding… Who is Terry? Sometimes, I wonder how we have remained friends.

But let’s jump into the top episodes that had meaning for me. It is hard to choose from because all of the 52 episodes were fantastic. But let’s hop into it.

  • Rebirth Parts 1 and 2 (Season 1, Episodes 1 & 2 ) – Who is running Gotham after Bruce gets old? Don’t worry you can find out in this 2 part episode. This will be a bit long because it is 2 episodes. In an airplane hangar just outside of Gotham City, a group of kidnappers watch a news report about a failed attempt by Derek Powers to take over Wayne Enterprises. (Derek Powers is scum… more on that later.) The news also states that the kidnappers have failed to release their hostage Bunny Vreeland in spite of being paid five million dollars in ransom. As it turns out, they plan to execute Bunny and make a getaway with the money. Batman arrives, wearing a new suit that lacks a cape but features retractable wings and jet boots along with increased strength, flexibility, propulsion, agility and other abilities. Batman manages to subdue most of the kidnappers with limited effort, although he does get a brief crippling chest pain afterwards. (Things were looking too good for Bruce. However, just as he is about to untie Bunny, the thug leader ends up ambushing him with a wrench (with Bunny attempting to warn Batman of the oncoming attack by gasping). As the Caped Crusader is engaging the last thug, he is suddenly struck by crippling chest pain severe enough to bring him to the floor. The last kidnapper, wielding an oversized wrench, unleashes a savage attack. As he continues his vicious battering, he smugly comments how Batman had been getting in the way of people like him since he was a kid. Unable to defend himself and in serious danger, Batman snatches up a weapon dropped by one of the other kidnappers in desperation… a handgun. As surprised as Batman is to see what he has done, his attacker runs off fearfully, before being intercepted by the arriving police. njured, Batman limps outside the hangar. He removes his mask and reveals a gray-haired, older appearance. Upon realizing he was wielding a handgun, something he had sworn he would never do, Bruce is enveloped in absolute horror and revulsion. Back at the Batcave, he puts the Batsuit in the costume display gallery alongside his other crime fighter costumes and his original batsuit that he used to wear as Batman. Realizing that he has grown too old for crimefighting anymore, he takes one last look at the Batcave from the top of the stairs and solemnly vows never be Batman again. Twenty years pass and Gotham City has changed much in this time, according to a current newscast. Derek Powers has managed to take control of Wayne-Powers, and has been increasing his power and wealth by gobbling up smaller businesses. A teenager dressed as a clown climbs onto a public train and starts making trouble. Just then, Terry McGinnis deals with the clown and grumbles “Jokerz”. (They think they know… But they have no idea.) At school, he gets into a fight with Nelson Nash which gets him into trouble. His father is not all that happy. Back at Terry’s house, his father Warren McGinnis gets a desperate message from his co-worker Harry Tully. He meets with his co-worker who has several dark patches on his skin. Tully gives Warren a disk and is dragged off by Mr. Fixx, a large man who works for Powers. Upon returning home, Warren reviews the data on the disk and becomes distressed and shocked at the information on the disk. Terry tells him that he’s leaving but Warren forbids it as Terry’s grounded, despite the fact that he didn’t start the fight. (Terry is always in some mess so can you blame Dad.) After a brief argument Terry leaves in anger. As he leaves, Powers’s hit man Fixx watches and grins, seeing that Warren is now alone. Terry heads out to a nightclub and meets up with his girlfriend Dana Tan. (He is 16 right? Are there fake ID’s involved?) Things escalate when the Jokerz arrive and terrorize Dana. Terry starts fighting them but when reinforcements arrive, Terry is forced to flee on one of their motorcycles. The gang chases Terry down a seldom-used road and Terry swerves to avoid hitting an old man, which causes him to fall. The Jokerz catch up with him. Just then, the old man reveals himself as Bruce Wayne, and demands that the Jokerz leave, but they attack instead. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=05QJOmnr-IA) Together, he and Terry manage to fight off the gang but Bruce suffers from his weak heart. While snooping Terry discovers the Batcave. Upon seeing the costumes, Terry learns Bruce’s secret but Bruce attacks him from behind and angrily throws him out. Upon returning home, Terry finds his house in shambles and the words “ha, ha, ha” written in graffiti all over the house. The police are there as is his mother. Terry asks what happened and where’s his father. They inform Terry that Warren has been killed, and the Jokerz are apparently responsible. (The Jokerz are dumb but Powers is diabolical.) But Terry has to move in with is mother and discovers the disk that his father was killed for. He returns to Wayne Manor to show him the evidence. Terry spends the second part of this episode dodging Powers and his henchmen. His solution… break into the batcave and steal the batsuit. Terry, in the suit, clumsily flies towards the Wayne-Powers tower and eavesdrops on a conversation between Powers and Egans. As evidence of the gas’s lethality, Powers shows Egans footage of the gas being tested on plants, then on a calf, and then photographs of Tully after his accident. Egans is impressed, and Powers assures him that the gas will be shipped out that very night; his assistant Mr. Fixx will personally see to it. After Egans leaves, however, Powers is concerned that Terry is still alive. Fixx tells him not to worry, revealing that he is the one who killed Warren. Security guards discover Terry and attack. Bruce deosn’t take kindly to his suit being stolen. Poor Terry doesn’t know that Bruce can see and control the suit from his computer in the batcave. When Bruce shuts the suit down… Terry gets the beating of his life. Terry makes his way to the hover docks and discovers Powers and Fixx supervising the loading of the gas. He is attacked by more security guards. On Powers’s orders, Fixx gets into the hovercraft and takes off, while Powers stays behind to deal with Terry. Terry throws a Batarang, which Powers shoots out of the air with ease. Terry then throws a gas canister, which Powers shoots without thinking, exposing himself to the gas. Terry flies after the hovercraft. Terry manages to fight off Fixx and the hovercraft is destroyed. That morning, Terry’s mother wakes him and tells him that Bruce is there to see him. Bruce tells Terry’s mother that Terry saved his life and defended him from the Jokerz and he tried to reward him, but Terry refused. Bruce offers Terry a job as a part-time assistant, which Terry accepts, knowing that the offer is really to become the new Batman. Back at Wayne-Powers, Powers is exposed to intense radiation to eliminate the gas. The radiation succeeded in saving his life. However, the radiation therapy, combined with the gas’s mutagenic properties, radically altered Powers’s body. He is now emitting radiation so powerful that his skin is now translucent, and he appears as a glowing green skeleton. So that is fun. Birth of a new villain… (Well the transformation of the same villian.)

  • Meltdown (Season 1, Episode 5) – It has been awhile since we have seen Mr. Freeze. It always entertains me when Terry had to battle baddies of the past. Powers is at it again. But Freeze thrives on revenge. He is not a person you want to double cross. Out at the Gotham Docks, Batman tests the water and discovers that it’s ripe with radiation. The reason soon arrives and a bunch of men in lead suits arrive to unload canisters of radioactive waste into a barge. Batman takes on his stealth mode and starts attacking the crew. Being able to move virtually undetected, he easily defeats the crew and stops the evidence from being removed. Batman then goes after the group’s leader, and using the man’s cell phone, he discovers Derek Powers’ involvement. I haved learned from comics that Billionaires are either Villains or hero vigilantes. Derek, at this time, is trying to buy out a company and using the underhanded tactic of using a late hour negotiation. Unfortunately for him, when he hears from Batman informing him that his men are going to be caught by the coast guard, much to his anger, his skin starts to crack and he has to give up the negotiation for the time being. Back in his laboratory, Powers complains about the fact that the skin hardly lasts any more but there is nothing his doctors can do. However, a new doctor, Dr. Stephanie Lake, approaches Powers and tells him that she can clone him a new body and transfer his mind into it. (The other Doctors try warning against her idea. I originally thought it was because they wanted to keep her beneath the rest of them. But honestly… It was a bad idea.) (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTc-5tILw6U) This body would be healthy, since she would screen out the mutation. Powers is intrigued, but Dr. Lake says that she wants to test the procedure on someone else: Mr. Freeze’s disembodied but immortal head which has been kept in a Wayne-Powers vault for nearly fifty years. The procedure is performed and Victor Freeze soon finds himself in a new, healthy body—one that, miraculously, is able to feel heat and cold like a normal person. Things seem okay, but Bruce is suspicious of both Freeze and Powers and tells Terry to tail Freeze. Bruce trusts no one.  A sniper tries to kill Freeze. Batman stops the attack, but the sniper cries that “the monster’s gotta die”. Mr. Freeze had previously killed this sniper’s family and he now seeks revenge. Freeze decides that he’s done enough damage to the sniper’s life, and sets him free, vowing to make amends. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7GJUqteX5Lc) Later, Freeze announces that he’s starting an organization so that he can help the people he once hurt. He promises to fund this with his legitimate holdings, which now comes to significant sum in this time. Terry thinks that Freeze is trying to change. After the announcement, Freeze starts to notice that he’s feeling hot. He leaves the studio and feels even more uncomfortable from the heat. However, it soon starts snowing, and he immediately feels better, proving that he’s starting to revert to his previous condition. Freeze returns to Dr. Lake and she informs Powers of the incident. She guesses that there is a mnemonic agent within his DNA that caused him to revert. Powers wishes to biopsy Freeze’s organs and without warning, Dr. Lake seals Victor inside a cell and turns up the heat to try to knock him out, but he escapes the cell by throwing with gurney on glass at her, now convinced that Dr. Lake and Powers have betrayed and tried to murder him. He escapes the facility, hell bent on revenge once more. Freeze arrives in a suit more powerful than any he had built before with improved protection against bullets and freeze guns built into the gauntlets. Freeze corners Powers and Dr. Lake and freezes them both in icy coffins, then goes out and fights off some guards, making his way towards the main power generators. Unknown to him, back in the hallway, Powers unleashes the full heat of his body’s radioactivity, shedding both his icy prison and his artificial skin. The final battle sends Freeze up in flames. Powers doesn’t die… Because… I mean it is only the first season but… I doubt that Freeze died either.

  • Shriek (Season 1, Episode 7) -Walter Shreeve is looking for more funding from Derek Powers. The meeting doesn’t go as planned. Although, I found it pretty entertaining. Derek Powers sits alone in a dark room while listening to a lecture from acoustician Walter Shreeve, who explains that sound is the first warning of danger and is under-appreciated. Just after that, Powers hears the sound of a locomotive racing towards him and stares into its headlight. Just as he screams in panic, the illusion ends and Shreeve points out that it was only to prove his point. The invention of a profound acoustical amplification/manipulation suit capable of easily destroying solid objects through use of focused infrasonic frequencies. Shreeve expresses his desire to use this suit to revolutionise the construction industry, but Powers is still unimpressed. Seeking to make use of Shreeve Sound Laboratories’ research & development, Powers hires Shreeve to destroy Batman and Bruce Wayne. (Who knows what it must be like for Bruce to know that Powers wants to destroy him…) Bruce makes a speech to his board of directors expressing his disgust with Powers’ idea to tear up Crime Alley, now known as Gotham’s Historical District due to being left unchanged from the city’s development and build an industrial complex. He proposes that they hold a stockholders’ meeting for a vote. The proposal is quickly seconded and Powers has no choice, but to allow the meeting to take place. Nevertheless, he’s sure that his plan will succeed. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZKhjEtr_0_E) Bruce meets up with Terry and takes him to Crime Alley, where he explains why he’s fighting so hard to keep the place preserved: it includes the theater where his parents were killed. Terry is confused as to why Bruce would want to keep that particular memory alive when he could easily allow the area to be torn down and forget it, but Bruce quietly compares it to Terry forgetting the memory of what happened to his father. Shreeve enters in his sonic-suit and starts attacking with sound blasts powerful enough to tear up the floor which severely damages the old building. Getting Bruce and himself out of the way of several attacks, Batman tries to engage Shreeve away from Bruce, but when Shreeve shows he’s only interested in harming Bruce, Batman damages Shreeve’s right hand sound generator with a Batarang. The sparking and arcing unit hurts Shreeve and forces him to eject it; the distraction allows Batman to retrieve it, grab Bruce and run out of the GPD before it completely collapses. Batman and Shreeve are okay, but Bruce faints from the exertion. Bruce gives the hospital workers a hard time over being there. Bruce starts to hear voices. The voice claimes that there’s something he must do. The voices order him to go to the window and open it. The voice indirectly encourages him to jump from the window, which would cause him to fall to his death. Even though he doesn’t jump, it doesn’t look good for Bruce. Terry does an analysis of the sound generator from Shreeve’s suit and discovers it to be comprised of acoustium, an alloy developed by Shreeve Sound Laboratories. With this lead, he disguises himself as a misdirected pizza delivery boy and cons his way into Shreeve’s lab with free pizza. Shreeve shows Terry some of his inventions such as a miniature radio receiver and transmitter and device to cancel out sound. However, when Terry asks about sound vibrations, Shreeve becomes suspicious and attacks him. Terry manages to escape and the police learn of Shreeve. Terry rushes back to the hospital to inform Bruce, but the nurse informs him that he has been transferred to the psych ward, apparently on Powers’ advice and under Powers’ care. (Yeah that is what you want. To be in the care of the person trying to kill you.) Batman pays a visit to Bruce in the psych ward and discovers the source of the voices: one of Shreeve’s miniature radios hidden in Bruce’s bandage. He apparently bribed a nurse to place it there. Together, the two leave the hospital and trace the signal back to Shriek. Batman finds him in a car factory and the two start to fight. Shriek has the advantage with his formidable sonic blasts and Batman attempts to hide. Batman turns on the factory’s machinery, causing a concert of noise. Shriek, however, reveals another of his sonic-suit’s acoustic abilities: the projection of a dampening field that cancels out all ambient sound waves. Batman is pursued out of the factory in an eerily complete silence, nearly getting killed not only by Shriek, but a series of dangers that he’s unable to detect without sound. However, as Ace is able to hear, Bruce unleashes him; the canine saves Terry from being hit by a truck. Just as Shriek finds them, Batman once again damages his right hand sound generator with a Batarang, causing the dampening field to suddenly cut-out and Shriek’s ears are overwhelmed by the various sounds of the city which are collectively amplified in exponential by his sonic-suit. Screaming in pain, Shreeve collapses and receives a shock when Batman removes his helmet: he has gone deaf. (Well I should have seen that coming.) Check out the final scene here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8lKH2BpJ_JY)

  • The Winning Edge (Season 1, Episode 9) – Out on the streets of Gotham City, a group of Jokerz crowd around an illegal arms dealer who shows them some of his impressive merchandise. However, Batman shows up and breaks up the sale. The next day, Terry sleeps in class again and the teacher gets angry, giving him a note to take home. Dana tries to comfort Terry by asking him to the game that night, though Terry refuses the offer at first, but Dana further persuades him, saying “you need some excitement in your life”. During the game, the opposite team easily scores a goal and the Coach berates his players for under-performing. As the time out ends, one of the players, Mason, rolls up his sleeve and slaps a patch onto his arm, which instantly bulges with muscle. With his newfound strength, Mason checks one of his opponents so hard he pushes him through the wall of the court, almost hitting Terry and Dana in the process. The referee objects, but the Coach commends Mason. (The coach isn’t likable at all. He is someone that the kids are supposed to be getting help from but he is looking the other way.) Mason is having a hard time and his girlfriend Chelsea and his friends notice it. In order to keep up the addiction they have been robbing places. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9TA56hw_VJQ) Later, Mason buys slappers from a supplier concealed in a black car. He uses one of the slappers and instantly feels better. Batman searches Mason’s locker, he discovers the packet of slappers and takes them. However, Coach Creagar finds and attacks him. After a brief fight, however, Batman manages to beat the coach and escapes. Mary walks in and confronts Terry about his tardiness. Terry claims that he was running errands for Mr. Wayne, but she doesn’t buy it. She already knows that he’s been caught sleeping in class, and wants to see the note from his teacher. Before Terry can reach for it, Matt runs to get it, and as Terry tries to stop him, he drops his backpack and the packet of slappers falls out. Mary believes that he’s been using them, and grounds him until further notice after Terry tries to explain what happened, much to Terry’s dismay. Restricted to work, Terry goes to Bruce and gives him a slapper that he managed to keep. Bruce analyzes it and finds that it contains Venom. The only person who has the formula is Bruce’s old enemy Bane, who now lives on a remote island estate. Batman sneaks onto Bane’s estate and ties up his attendant, Jackson Chappell. He finds Bane, whose physique has wasted away to nothing, and is now so weak that he can barely move and needs a respirator to breathe. Chappell says it is the result of too many years on Venom. Batman leaves, baffled as to who is supplying the Venom. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_BLe5aXwBaY) Batman follows the car to the supplier’s hide out after breaking up a sale to Mason, and finds a secret slapper factory. The car opens and the “boss” of the operation steps out: Chappell. It turns out that Bane entrusted the formula to Chappell after he became too weak to make it himself; his years of Venom use left Bane dependent on it just to keep himself alive. (This has to be one of the most shockiing episodes for me. I always thought Bane was an addict. But seeing how he ends up is crazy. The kids not know Bane were more susceptible.) Chappell bares his torso and applies four slappers, becoming hugely strong. Batman fights back, but Chappell’s raw strength proves too great even for Batman’s enhanced capabilities. However, during the fight, Batman manages to throw him onto the slapper machine, covering his whole body with them. He screams as the drug takes effect, but is now freakishly large and strong, and nearly insane with rage. But Batman triggers a small explosion that sprays chemicals in his enemy’s eyes, blinding him. As Chappell swings wildly around, he causes a large explosion that incapacitates him. As the smoke clears, Batman looks closer and sees that, due to the overdose, there was nothing upstairs. Check it out: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OGQIghWQmUA)

  • Spellbound (Season 1, Episode 10) –  Gotham City is overcome by a rash of strange crimes by seemingly normal people, each of whom claims to have experienced hallucinations after meeting a man dressed in a strange suit and a magic eye. Chelsea returns home from a date with her boyfriend, Rick. When he asks if she’s all right walking alone the last few feet to her door, she says nothing ever happens around their block. Before reaching home, Chelsea notices a strange wind picking up and is approached by a man dressed in a strange costume. He tells her not to be afraid and shows her a large eye in his hand, inviting her to an “adventure”. Chelsea stares into the eye and suddenly finds herself wandering through a jungle. She enters an ancient temple and picks up a small idol in the center. She then follows the strange man to a pool of lava and drops the statue down. In reality, she has entered her home, picked up a statue from her father’s study, and dropped it off the riverbank outside her door. When her father confronts her, she snaps out of it and expresses confusion. Neither of them notice the man fly away with the statue in hand. Check it out here: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0xEESMrsoiA) The next day, Terry talks to his friend Jared and notices Commissioner Barbara Gordon walk by. He follows her and eavesdrops on a conversation between her and Ira Billings, the school psychologist. Billings says that, in his expert opinion, Chelsea commits acts like this to get attention, and her “mystery man” story is likely made-up as an excuse. Barbara accepts this explanation and leaves. (I have always wondered why he was allowed to talk to the police. Don’t the cops need a warrant.) Terry is suspicious, but even Bruce doesn’t see anything wrong, believing that it’s just Chelsea’s personal problems. Night comes and the mysterious man picks off another victim, Mr. Deakins, an auction house manager. Mr. Deakins is hit by the power of the eye and soon after he knocks one of the security guards unconscious and locks himself inside. As the police arrive, and tend to the guard, Deakins drags a valuable dress (once belonging to Princess Audrey) up to the roof. In his mind, he’s in the middle of a jungle war, dragging a wounded comrade to safety while trying to evade the enemy. On the roof, the mystery man is waiting, where Deakins sees his vehicle as a rescue helicopter. He loads the dress onto the craft. Batman arrives but Mr. Deakins sees him as an enemy soldier and attacks him, telling the “helicopter” to run for it. After a brief fight, Batman manages to knock Mr. Deakins into the wall, thereby snapping him out of his delusion. Mr. Deakins also expresses confusion. Chelsea is now being taken seriously since another person spots the villain. Terry announces that he has a personal gathering to attend. Terry goes to the wedding of Jared’s mother, admiring the large jewels she’s wearing. However, as the bride walks down the stairs, a magic eye concealed in a video camera hits her and she suddenly sees herself in a nest of gigantic insects. She runs in terror. Catching a glimpse of Spellbinder hiding in the crowd, Terry runs down to his motorcycle and pulls out the Batsuit. In terror, Jared’s mother jumps off the hotel balcony. Batman grabs her, but she sees him as an insect too and tries to escape him. Eventually, she sees even her jewelry as insects and tears them off, before falling onto the train tracks in the path of an oncoming train. Batman manages to save her but cannot stop Spellbinder from stealing the jewels. The next day, Billings expresses concern for Terry’s mental health, given the recent loss of his father and the new stress caused by his job. He invites Terry to tell him about his experiences working for Bruce. Terry is a little reluctant but finally caves in. (Mr. Billings is a bit too helpful.) That night, Bruce hears an intruder alarm sounding. He goes upstairs and finds Terry stealing valuables from his home. Terry sees himself as being a contestant on a shopping spree game show and even attacks Bruce when he tries to stop him. Bruce, however, snaps Terry out of it. In the Batcave, Bruce reveals Spellbinder’s true identity: Billings. All of the victims either had therapy with him, or had children who did, which is how Billings “cased” their houses. He does not suspect Terry’s secret identity, but only used him to get access to Wayne Manor — which means that at that moment Spellbinder is waiting outside for him. (Just know that my mind is blown.) Terry confronts Spellbinder as Batman, but is hit by the magic eye. Things don’t seem to alter, and he claims that he’s okay but soon sees a pack of zombies crawl out of the ground and they attack. As the illusory zombies gang up on Batman, Spellbinder explains his motives for the crimes: Having gotten poor compensation for treating many of the students with connections to wealthy families, he decided to get what he believed he was entitled to and strike back at the rich, with Spellbinder also using the illusions to sneak attack Batman. The images eventually fade and Batman sees Spellbinder standing just in front of a cliff. He runs after him but Bruce warns Terry that it’s an illusion. Terry freezes, stopping just short of where the real cliff is. Spellbinder attacks from behind, but falls off the cliff himself after Batman evades the attack and captures him.

  • Disappearing Inque (Season 1, Episode 11) – We met Inque earlier in the series…. when she was employed by Derek Powers for corporate espionage against Foxtecha. In their first clash, Terry used Mr. Freeze’s gun to immobilize her. Inque broke down into pieces of ice, which were then delivered to Police Commissioner Barbara Gordon in a giant bag. So this episode takes us back to her. Out at Gotham Cryogenics, a disgruntled employee, Aaron Herbst, walks in on Inque who is still trapped in a block of ice. He starts talking to I