Recap: David is “on the air” in the DJ booth, describing the heart-pounding thrill of roller coaster rides to his fellow students. He and Donna are promoting Senior Ditch Day at Magic Mountain, and they remind everyone that tickets are still available. David then announces that any seniors who are unable to participate in Ditch Day - like Steve, for example - will be forced to spend the day in mandatory study hall. Steve, meanwhile, is standing in front of the detention classroom, listening to David's announcement with a pained look on his face. When the bell rings, he lets out a heavy sigh and reluctantly joins his fellow detentioners.
Gil Meyers compliments David and Donna on doing a good job selling Ditch Day, and proudly informs them that 95% of the senior class is registered to go. Donna points out that it's not exactly hard to sell a day at Magic Mountain when the alternative is spending the day in mandatory study hall. No duh. Brenda and Ahn-drea are manning the nearby Ditch Day registration table, and Ahn-drea remarks that she's never been to Magic Mountain before. Gil raves about how awesome it is, and Brenda tells her about the Viper, the park's scariest roller coaster. Ahn-drea just looks aghast.
Dylan and Kelly stroll over to the registration table. Kelly registers for Ditch Day, while Dylan passes because he's decided to retake the SAT and will therefore be spending Ditch Day studying. Uh...isn't it a little late in the school year to be retaking the SAT and be applying to universities? Steve joins the conversation and snarkily reminds Dylan to put his name on the test, since scorers award 200 points just for doing that...and Kelly jokes that that's how Steve managed to score any points on his SAT. Haha.. Steve snaps back that it least it was an honest 200 points, so Dylan irritably demands to know what he means by that. Steve immediately backs down like the wuss he is and claims he was just kidding. He then tells everyone that Mrs. Teasley isn't allowing him to participate in Ditch Day, so it looks like he'll be stuck in his twice daily detention sessions and mandatory study hall. Dylan smirks and tells him, “Don't do the crime if you can't do the time.”
The Peach Pit. Steve is hanging with Brandon, mimicking Dylan's breathy voice as he says, “Don't do the crime if you can't do the time.” He calls Dylan a hypocrite, so Brandon explains that Dylan's only retaking the SAT because he wants to prove that the impressive score he got last time (when he was accused of cheating) wasn't a fluke. Suddenly, a pretty blonde enters the diner and Steve brazenly checks her out. She strides over to the counter and asks Brandon and Steve if either of them are Nat “Fuseekio”. Steve tells her he could be, while Brandon summons Nat. The blonde introduces herself as Ginger O'Hare and tells Nat that she's confirming tomorrow's breakfast arrangements for the J. Thomas Parnell Celebrity tour group. Nat stares at her in confusion and is all, “Wuh?” since clearly this is the first he's heard about it. Ginger looks dismayed and asks, “He didn't call you?” She then starts complaining about how disorganized Parnell is, and how she has to do everything herself, blah blah. When Nat looks even more confused, she explains that her boss, J. Thomas Parnell, charters tour groups from around the country to come to L.A. and immerse themselves in “the Hollywood experience”. Tomorrow morning he's busing in around twenty people who belong to a Burt Reynolds fan club in Arizona. Nat tells her it's OK for her to bring her group to the diner, and Brandon even offers to come in early and work the breakfast shift...and then afterward he'll cruise up to Magic Mountain in his Mustang. Steve interjects and offers to ferry Brandon to the amusement park in his Corvette...and he only says this because he wants Ginger to know that he drives a Corvette. Brandon discreetly asks him about his mandatory detention sessions, and Steve breezily assures him that he's got that covered. Suddenly, Nat lets out a big sneeze, which can only mean that by morning he will develop a debilitating flu and be unable to report to work.
The Walsh house. Sure enough, early the next morning, a sleepy Mama Walsh wakes Brandon to tell him that Nat's on the phone. Between wheezes and sneezes, Nat tells Brandon that he's too sick to come to work and needs him to open the diner...and Brandon tells him he'll be there shortly. Fortunately for me, this means that the rest of the episode is gloriously Nat free.
West Beverly High. Senior Ditch Day has arrived, and everyone who's going to Magic Mountain heads toward the bus. Tony Miller jokingly asks David if he got a note from his mother to ride the Viper, and this prompts Ahn-drea to ask why everyone keeps talking about this particular roller coaster. David describes the scary way it flips and spirals, and this seems to really freak Ahn-drea out. Kelly encounters Steve as she makes her way toward the bus, and he offers to drive her up to Magic Mountain in his Corvette. She declines and tells him she wants the full Ditch Day experience, which includes the bus ride. She then asks him if he's planning to skip detention, and he tells her that his plan is to check in first thing in the morning, bail out of school for the day, and then reappear to check in for his afternoon detention session. Kelly disapprovingly tells him she hopes he knows what he's doing.
The Peach Pit. Dylan is slouching over the counter, chatting with Brandon as he studies for the SAT. Steve enters the diner and tells them that detention is being monitored for the day by a substitute teacher, and he barely looked up while doing the roll-call. He asks Brandon if he's ready to head up to Magic Mountain, but Brandon tells him he can't take off until his co-workers, Willie and Nadine, arrive. He also mentions that Ginger O'Hare and her tour group flaked out, since they never showed up for breakfast. The phone rings, and Brandon rushes off to answer it. Dylan derisively asks Steve if he's supposed to be in study hall, so Steve shoots back that he's planning to spend the day at Magic Mountain. Dylan warns him that he'd better hope Mrs. Teasley doesn't find out, and Steve remarks in wonderment how similarly judgmental he and Kelly sound when they admonish him. Brandon returns to the counter and informs Steve that the call he just got was from Willie and Nadine. It seems the two got into a fender bender while carpooling to work, which means he'll be stuck at the diner indefinitely. Steve decides to head up to Magic Mountain on his own...but before he does, he says he needs to make a quick pit-stop. Once he's safely out of earshot, Dylan gripes to Brandon about what a douchenozzle he is, and how he's always working some angle. Brandon urges him to cut Steve some slack, since it's obvious that he's extremely jealous of his (Dylan's) relationship with Kelly...and explains that Steve often feels like a loser because of how frequently and consistently he is rejected by girls. Steve reappears and is about to leave for Magic Mountain when Ginger suddenly enters the diner, followed by a very large group of Bert Reynolds fans. As the fans stream inside, Brandon informs Ginger that she's forty-five minutes late, and irritably remarks that there's a lot more people in her group than she said there would be. Ginger shrugs and tells him the bus was late, and that she had no idea the group would be so large. She then pretends to look around for Parnell. Brandon tells her that since he's the only employee at the diner, he's not able to serve her group. When Dylan and Steve overhear this, they step up and offer to help him - and I'm pretty sure they only do that because they think Ginger is hot.
Magic Mountain. The bus arrives at the amusement park, and everyone disembarks looking excited about the day ahead...except, of course, for Ahn-drea. She's her usual downbeat, angst-ridden self. She tells the gang she'll meet them after she drops off some paperwork at the administration office. Considering that Gil came along on the trip, shouldn't he do that? Kelly, Donna, Brenda, and David are all champing at the bit to get into the park and start going on rides, so they promise to meet up with Ahn-drea once she's finished with her errand. After they rush off, a guy dressed in jeans and a jean jacket deliberately bumps into Ahn-drea. Mmm...he's definitely up to no good.
The Peach Pit. Steve attempts to entertain one of the women in the fan club with a story about how Burt Reynolds has a favorite stool at the Peach Pit, and that one day he found Clint Eastwood sitting on it. The two got to talking, and by the end of their conversation they sealed a movie deal. The woman shrugs disinterestedly and asks him where Ginger went, since her primary concern is being on time for the screening they're all supposed to go to next. Across the diner, Dylan hands Brandon a stack of receipts, and Brandon asks him if he knows where Ginger went. Dylan tells him he saw her walk toward the bathrooms. Brandon locates her in the men's room (maybe she can't read door signs) and she's sobbing. When he asks her what's wrong, she tearfully informs him that no one at the theater where her tour group is scheduled to go next knows anything about a special screening. She can't get a hold of Parnell, and suspects that his entire operation is a scam. She then notices the stack of receipts Brandon is holding, and he tells her that they add up to about $300. Ginger does some more fake crying and tells him that Parnell was supposed to be at the diner to cover the breakfast bill, and confesses that she doesn't have any money. Brandon remains optimistic and tells her that Parnell is probably on his way to the diner to pay the bill, and urges Ginger to tell the group the truth about why the screening is being cancelled.
Ginger follows Brandon's advice, but it totally backfires when one of the women threatens to call the police unless Ginger delivers on everything the fan club paid for...which includes a meet-and-greet with Burt Reynolds. Steve thinks he's saving the day when he stands up and addresses the crowd. He reminds them that Burt Reynolds isn't the only star in L.A., and tries to entice them with an appearance by another celebrity - a certain Samantha Sanders, perhaps? One of the guys in the fan club goes, “Who?” (haha!) and the angry woman snidely tells Steve that she has no interest in meeting a washed up actress who hasn't been on the air in ten years. Hahaha! Steve gets enraged and actually threatens to poke the woman in the eye for denigrating his washed up actress of a mother who, let's face it, hasn't been on TV since she starred in the grisly Hartley House. Brandon intercedes and physically restrains Steve from engaging in any eye-poking.
Magic Mountain. Ahn-drea has finished her errand at the administration office and meets up with Kelly, Brenda, Donna, and David. The four are eager to go on another roller coaster, but Ahn-drea is too scared. She suddenly starts prattling in her annoying, frenetic way, and tells them that the park manager has agreed to give her a tour of all of the kiddie rides, which will be helpful in the future planning of an outing for the day camp kids next summer. As she babbles nonsensically, Kelly, Brenda, and Donna each snap, “Ahn-drea!?” to try to get her to shut up. When she finally shuts her pie-hole, she sheepishly admits that she's never been on a roller coaster, and she's too terrified to try. David loses all patience with Ahn-drea's neuroses, and ditches the girls to go catch up to Tony Miller. Donna, Kelly, and Brenda agree to stay with Ahn-drea and keep her boring ass company...and declare that it's time for a food break.
The Peach Pit. In the back room, Steve tells Ginger all about how Samantha Sanders is his mother, and that she once did a cameo for Burt Reynolds in “Smokey and the Bandit”. And by did a cameo, I'm pretty sure he means that Samantha played an extra - since I doubt she was ever famous enough for her movie appearances to be considered cameos. Dylan enters the room and immediately sasses Steve for telling Ginger one of his many bullshit stories, and warns Ginger not to believe a word this douchenozzle says. This, of course, pisses Steve off, and he and Dylan excuse themselves and go out the back door so they can more freely snipe at each other. While they're busy doing that, neither notices Ginger climb out of the bathroom window and slip inside Brandon's Mustang. She drives off just as Brandon storms into the alley, looking for her. Steve and Dylan casually inform him that it looks as though she borrowed his car just now, and Brandon immediately panics and bellows at the two idiots that she has just stolen his car! He rushes back inside the diner to call the police to report his car stolen, while Dylan and Steve climb into Steve's Corvette and squeal off in hot pursuit of Ginger. After driving excessively fast and erratic, Steve manages to catch up with her and box her in on the side of the road. She gets out of the car and actually admonishes him for nearly causing an accident. When they confront her about stealing Brandon's car, she claims that Brandon loaned her his keys...but then gets tearful and admits that taking the car was a stupid thing to do. Uh, d'yuh. She then claims that she merely “borrowed” his car because she wanted to go find Parnell's office. Steve suggests that they all go to Parnell's office together. Dylan insists on driving the Mustang, and orders Ginger to slide over to the passenger seat.
Magic Mountain. Brenda, Donna, Kelly, and Ahn-drea each get a tray of food and then seat themselves at a table. When Kelly digs through her purse to pay Donna back for paying for her food, she suddenly realizes that her wallet is missing. In the next scene, she checks in with the Lost & Found. Someone turned in her wallet, but unfortunately it's been emptied of all the cash and credit cards. She gets really bummed over it, and bitterly regrets coming to Magic Mountain for Senior Ditch Day.
Parnell's office address turns out to be a construction site. Ginger tells Steve and Dylan that because she got the job over the phone, she never actually saw Parnell's office. She berates herself for her naivete in getting herself tangled up with an obvious con man. She's stressed out about being on the hook to produce Burt Reynolds for the angry fan club back at the Peach Pit...and Dylan jokes that that shouldn't be a problem for Steve since he's such good friends with the actor. Steve glares at Dylan and tells Ginger that he'll make some calls and see what he can do. After a few calls, however, it's clear he's having no luck getting through to Burt...and at this point, there's only one thing left for him to do: call mommy to come to the rescue.
Magic Mountain. The four girls sit on a bench while Kelly continues to brood about losing her money and her credit cards. David, who's clearly not burdened with concern for her plight, reminds the gals that there are a lot of rides they haven't gone on yet. Donna rebukes him for being insensitive, but Kelly suddenly springs to her feet and agrees with David. She says that they should have fun...and declares that she refuses to give the thief the power to steal both her money and her fun. Ahn-drea applauds her positive attitude, but then has to admit that she's still too much of a pathetic scaredy cat to ride on a roller coaster. I don't know why she doesn't go on a carousel, or some bumper cars then. Donna takes pity on her and offers to sit with her while the others go off to enjoy more rides.
While Steve is finishing up his calls to try to locate Burt Reynolds, Ginger confesses to Dylan that her name is really Tina, and that she got into a little trouble back home in Oshkosh...so she came to L.A. to make a fresh start. Mmm hmm. Steve then strides over to announce that he knows where Burt is filming a scene for his new movie. Ginger looks thrilled.
Magic Mountain. As Donna and Ahn-drea stroll around the park, Ahn-drea tells her that she has a fear of the unknown, which is probably why she's so terrified of roller coasters. Donna describes to her how orgasmic it feels to ride the Viper - but then clarifies that she doesn't actually know first-hand how sex feels. Ahn-drea stares at her in surprise and asks her if she and David have doinked yet, and Donna lowers her big doe eyes and demurely shakes her head. She tells her she and David almost did it once. Ahn-drea tells her that she also almost did it once, and when Donna asks who with, Ahn-drea says it was with Brandon during the Home Again episode. Oh please. She fails to explain that Brandon had only been willing to consider hitting the sheets with her because he thought he was moving back to Minnesota and therefore wouldn't have to deal with the inevitable clingy, post-coital aftermath. She also fails to point out that once Brandon realized he wasn't moving back to Minnesota, he made it clear that he had no interest in anything other than a platonic relationship with her. So suck on that, Ahn-drea.
Film studio. Steve tries to convince the security guard to let him into the studio where Burt Reynolds is filming, but he doesn't have any luck. By implausible coincidence, a production assistant appears out of nowhere and announces that she's looking for any willing extras to appear in a commercial. Dylan, Ginger, and Steve see this as the perfect opportunity to get near Burt...and the three volunteer.
In the next scene, Dylan, Steve, and Ginger are dressed up in large, lumpy costumes. Apparently, they're portraying bacteria for a mouthwash commercial. The three step onto the set, which consists of a giant open mouth. The bacteria are all handed buckets of fake plaque, with which they're supposed to paint the tooth in front of them. During all this, Steve overhears someone say that Burt Reynolds has finished filming his scene and left the studio. I guess that means that this stupid scene is all for nothing. When the camera for the commercial starts rolling, Dylan, Steve, and Ginger slop “plaque” on the teeth...and then on each other. And when the “mouthwash” is violently sprayed on them, they tip over and get soaking wet. Oh the hilarity of physical comedy.
After the filming of the commercial, the three head back to the parking lot and pile into the Mustang...but before they're able to drive off, a police car pulls into the lot and stops behind them. The three idiots suddenly remember that Brandon reported his car stolen when Ginger took it, and that none of them bothered to call Brandon and tell him to call off the cops. Dylan and Steve explain to the officer that the car belongs to a friend of theirs, and the cop tells them that they need to report to the police station so the whole mess can get sorted out.
The Peach Pit. Brandon gets the call from Steve, telling him that they found his car...but also that they're being held at the police station on suspicion of grand theft auto. As they wait for the cops to clear them of the charges, Ginger nervously tells Steve that she got herself into some trouble back home and is worried about the cops figuring it out. Fortunately (for her), an officer appears and tells them that Brandon has vouched for them, and that they're all free to go.
After they leave the police station, Dylan reminds Steve that he has to check in at his afternoon detention session. Upon hearing this, Ginger pouts and tells Steve that he's their best hope of locating Burt Reynolds. Dylan reluctantly agrees to go to detention and pretend to be Steve for the roll-call.
Magic Mountain. Ahn-drea gets up from the bench that she and Donna have been warming to get herself a soda. This leaves Donna sitting alone...and the guy who was wearing jeans and a jean jacket and bumped into Ahn-drea earlier sneaks up behind Donna and grabs her purse. Unfortunately for him, the purse's shoulder strap is wrapped around Donna's wrist, so she manages to hold onto it, and starts fighting him off. She bellows, “Nooo!!” and kicks him, punches him, and tackles him to the ground in a matter of seconds. Two security guards immediately rush over and take control of the situation. They ask Donna if she's OK, and she tells them she's fine and then orders them to, “Get him out of here before I let him make my day.” As I laughed heartily and incredulously, and hit rewind on my DVD player to make sure I heard her right ("Get him out of here before I let him make my day." Hahahaha!), the security guards hustle the mugger away presumably before Donna can change her mind and finish him off. Ahn-drea has witnessed the ass-kicking of the century and is impressed. She gushes with admiration as she tells Donna she can't believe she did that. Indeed, it is pretty hard to believe.
Steve has no further luck tracking down Burt Reynolds, and he's ready to throw in the towel on the entire operation. He tells Ginger they're going to have to return to the Peach Pit and 'fess up to the fan club...but Ginger doesn't want to, because she's afraid that the angry woman will make good on her threat and call the cops on her. She suddenly smiles and tells Steve it would be waaay more fun to cruise to Vegas in his Corvette! When he points out that neither of them has any money, she tells him she has $2,500 in her purse. He looks puzzled and asks her why she didn't pay her breakfast bill at the Peach Pit or refund the money to the fan club group. Instead of offering any kind of explanation, Ginger gets a sly look on her face and “confesses” to him that her name is really Adrian, and that she ran into trouble in Salt Lake City and moved to L.A. to make a fresh start.
Um, OK... at this point in the episode, I guess we can assume that it's Ginger/Tina/Adrian who is really the con artist; however, I'm having trouble understanding exactly what her scheme is. If it was to collect money from the celebrity tour group and then abscond with it, I don't get why she hasn't done that already...or why her scam didn't include providing herself with a getaway vehicle so that it would be possible to abscond with the money. It makes no sense that she'd agree to return to the Peach Pit with Steve and face the angry fan club, but that's exactly what she does. Incidentally, I also found itweird that all the tour group people have been content to do nothing except hang around the Peach Pit all day.
Ginger admits to everyone in the fan club how badly she screwed the pooch on their Hollywood experience, and is about to refund the tour group's money when Burt Reynolds suddenly walks through the door! Everyone is dazzled by the sight of the aging actor and clammers around him excitedly. Burt asks Brandon where Nat is, and then Steve introduces himself as Samantha Sanders' son. Burt tells him that Samantha owes him one for agreeing to this impromptu appearance...and then starts signing autographs.
Magic Mountain. Ahn-drea is regaling the gang with the inconceivable story of how Donna fought off the mugger. As a result of Donna's bravery, it looks like Kelly got all of her money and credit cards back. Donna thanks Brenda for forcing her to take the self defense class in the Dead End episode, and then they head toward the bus. Ahn-drea suddenly stops walking and announces to everyone that she has one more thing she needs to do.
In the next scene she's riding on one of the roller coasters, screaming her head off.
The Peach Pit. The gang, plus Ginger, reunites at the Peach Pit, and they reflect on everything that happened during this dumb episode. Ahn-drea tells everyone that the roller coaster ride felt great (possibly almost as good as sex), while Brandon is sorry he missed Senior Ditch Day. Everyone who went to Magic Mountain is jealous that Brandon, Steve, and Dylan got to meet Burt Reynolds. Ginger suddenly notices a short bald man at the counter, talking to the waitress...and she discreetly excuses herself. Brenda asks Dylan if he's ready for the SAT tomorrow, and he tells her he is - even though it looked like he barely had a chance to study all day. The short bald man comes over to the table and asks Brandon if he knows a woman by the name of Marla Crawford...and Brandon tells him he doesn't. The man mutters that he made a mistake with “that girl”, who made off with $5,000 of his money. He hands Brandon his card, introduces himself as J. Thomas Parnell, and says he's been arranging celebrity tours in L.A. for twenty years. Brandon, Dylan, and Steve immediately jump up from the table and dash over to the men's bathroom. One by one they call out: “Ginger? Tina? Adrian? Marla?” But when the stall opens, a confused bearded man steps out. D'oh! The three idiots suddenly notice that the bathroom window is open...and then they hear the unmistakable squeal of car tires. Brandon and Dylan look alarmed and then stare over at Steve and exclaim, “Where are your keys?!"