Recap: The Facts gals are aerobicizing in the cafeteria to a Jane Fonda cassette tape, and - yeesh - it's not a pretty sight. As Natalie and Blair huff and puff from out-of-shape exhaustion, Jo chides them for their shitty fitness level and says that this is the point in their lives when they should be at their physical peak. She compares them unflatteringly to Mrs. Garrett, who's much older and jogs two miles a day...and Tootie gets in on that action and blurts out, "Yeah! Shame on you!" as though she's in any position to be critical of anyone else's fitness level. Natalie says that Mrs. Garrett is only going jogging 'cause she's desperate to hang onto her youth, then snaps that as far as exercise goes regarding the youthful, "Who needs this garbage?!" Blair clucks in amusement and tells them that the real reason Mrs. Garrett has taken up jogging is to spend more time with the man she's dating: Professor Henry Clayton, a teacher at Bates Academy. Jo shrugs and says it's nice she's dating and that the old girl could use some companionship, even if it is with a much older man. Blair concurs and says that women often seek love, companionship, and gold-digging opportunities from much older men...and Tootie agrees that, yep, there is a certain allure to dating older men.
Mrs. Garrett and Henry jog into the cafeteria to say hey. Natalie introduces herself with a blunt, "Hi, I'm Natalie. I'm fifteen. How old are you?" and Henry declines to answer...but then a few seconds later admits he's seventy. Blair gasps and marvels, "And you're still jogging?" then shakes her head in utter wonderment and calls his physical stamina remarkable. Mrs. Garrett explains that Henry has been a lifelong jogger...and when Henry jokes that he rotates his legs every 5,000 miles, Mrs. Garrett dissolves into gales of shriek-laughter for what seems like a really looooong time. Tootie informs her that her new curtains were delivered today, so then Mrs. Garrett asks Henry if he wouldn't mind helping her hang them. He says OK, then steps into the lounge to check his messages. Blair grins knowingly and points out that "hanging curtains" is a clever way to lure Henry up to her room...and Mrs. Garrett half-heartedly denies that any hanky-panky will ensue, then gets a dreamy look on her face and gushes about what a brilliant, well travelled, and special man Henry is. As she happily flounces upstairs, Jo remarks on how "whacked out" Mrs. Garrett is over Henry...while Natalie scrunches her face in disapproval and says she thinks he's way too old for her, and that she's pretty sure his arteries have hardened and that his libido is in very limp shape.
As Henry helps Mrs. Garrett hang her new curtains, the two chat about Tahiti, where he once traveled with his late wife. Mrs. Garrett says it sounds like a very romantic place...and when Henry suggests they travel there together next summer, Mrs. Garrett immediately gets all aflutter and cries, "Oh!" Henry quickly explains that he wasn't suggesting anything improper - even though at their age, who could possibly give a rat's ass? - he was hinting that a trip to Tahiti could be a sort of honeymoon. She stares at him in shock, then asks if he's proposing...and he's like, "Well d'yuh" and says he was once happily married and thinks he could be happy again with her. When Mrs. Garrett reminds him that they've only known each other for three months, he breezily insists it's right and urges her to think it over - but to not take too long since he's got one foot in the grave. He then leans in and plants her with an intense lip-on-lip smooch, which...ew.
Mrs. Garrett makes a beeline over to the girls' bedroom to dish about Henry's marriage proposal...and they're all, "Wha-a?!" and sit her down so they can fully review and analyze the sitch. Natalie reminds her she's only known the old fart for three months and asks if she's seriously considering marrying him, and Mrs. Garrett beams and chirps, "Absolutely!" Tootie grins and calls his proposal romantic, but Mrs. Garrett insists it's more than that, and that men like Henry don't come along every day. When Natalie grumbles about all the age related problems of Henry being seventy, Mrs. Garrett insists he's in great condition...but a few seconds later they hear him cry out in pain.
Henry somehow hurt his lower back while hanging up the curtains, and is now nestled in Mrs. Garrett's bed amid her many pillows. Natalie diagnoses him with degenerating disk problems and wryly says she knows from her doctor dad how common the condition is among the old folk. Mrs. Garrett offers to call a doctor, but Henry tells her not to bother 'cause it's happened before. He says it usually just takes a month of bedrest until he starts feeling better...and makes it clear that he's going to be doing all of his recuperating at Eastland. The Facts gals look horrified at being saddled with the old man for that long, and Jo tells Mrs. Garrett she can sleep in their room on a rollaway. After the girls shuffle out of the room, Henry implores Mrs. Garrett to accept his marriage proposal. She tells him she's still mulling it over, then gives him a little horn to honk if he needs anything...which soon turns out to be a really bad idea.
A few days later, Henry is full on cranky pants as he honks his horn and demands that someone bring him his nail clippers. Mrs. Garrett scurries around to locate the clippers while Natalie glares with disdain in Henry's direction. Blair enters the room and pleasantly asks, "How are we today?" and Henry admonishes her for her inaccurate grammar. Natalie lays it on thick about how much better he's looking...and that he seems more than ready to get up, change out of his nasty blue PJs, and get out into the world. LOL. Henry sarcastically asks her if this is Graduation Day, and Mrs. Garrett interjects and gently urges the girls to let Henry get his rest. Henry smugly concurs, then bitchily adds that he's unable to rest properly whenever the girls blare their ghastly rock and roll music. As Blair and Natalie shoot narrowed stink-eyes at him from the doorway, Mrs. Garrett soothingly assures her crusty old beau that they'll keep the racket down.
Jo brings Henry the day's issue of The New York Times and a packet of tobacco. Henry grumbles that she bought the wrong kind of tobacco, then complains that the financial section is missing from the paper. Jo explains that while running the errand on her motorcycle in the rain, she wiped out on the wet street and must have lost parts of the Times. Henry's like, "Whatever" and orders her to return to the scene of her wipeout and scour the streets for the paper's missing parts. Jo glares at him in bewildered disbelief as Mrs. Garrett and Natalie enter the room and ask, "How are we doing?" - another grammar blunder which prompts Henry to roll his eyes in annoyance. Natalie announces that she and Mrs. Garrett are off to a Save the Whales rally, and Henry mutters about what a dumb waste of time that is, and nonsensically retorts that it's not like whales ever rally together to save people. Tootie enters the room to serve Henry a steaming cup of hot chocolate, then asks him what the living situation will be when he and Mrs. Garrett get hitched. Henry looks put out and is all, "Excuse me?" then tells Mrs. Garrett how miffed he is at her for telling the girls about his marriage proposal. Tootie ignores his pissy displeasure and assures him he has their blessing (though by now it's probably been rescinded from Jo, Blair, and Natalie). An irked Henry haughtily tells Mrs. Garrett that these girls have far too much to say about their lives...and Mrs. Garrett quietly tells Natalie to head off to the rally without her 'cause she's going to need some one-on-one, breakup time with Henry.
Mrs. Garrett says, "We need to talk" and admonishes Henry for acting like such an assbag to her beloved Facts gals. She says she's gotten to know him better over the last few days and has concluded that he's too much of a whiny fussbudget for her to ever consider permanently hooking up with. She adds that they've never discussed any feelings of love that exist/don't exist between them, and Henry waves a dismissive hand in the air and says that love is for the young and that it's stupid 'cause it drives people to craziness. When Mrs. Garrett officially declines his proposal, he asks her if she'd be interested in shacking up with him, and she shakes her head in a hell no! fashion, but then softens the rejection by adding, "I'm not that hip." She tells him she's going to try to catch up with Natalie so she can attend the Save the Whales rally...but before she can make a break for it, Henry honks his horn and asks for a kiss, then explains that he'd like to know what he'll be missing - even though they already got into some heavy smooching action just a few scenes ago. For whatever reason she agrees to a goodbye kiss, then asks, "How's your heart?" and the two chuckle at the deft way she was able to dump him like yesterday's news without any hard feelings on his end.
Recap: The Facts gals are in the kitchen, and they're all (minus Jo) a-titter as they stare through the tiny kitchen window at the group of Bates Academy boys who are meeting with Mrs. Garrett to discuss the logistics of an upcoming dance. Blair blabs to everyone that Natalie is crushing on one of the guys, Ben, and Natalie vehemently denies it and says she merely thinks he's smart, nice, funny, interesting, and good looking. Heh. After Mrs. Garrett wraps up the meeting, the gals (minus Jo) rush into the cafeteria to leer at the boys and ask about the details of the dance. Mrs. Garrett tells Ben they'll get together again soon to further discuss the various food options...and when Jo asks Ben what the committee decided, he tells her it's going to be a formal Sadie Hawkins affair. Tootie looks intrigued by the idea of asking out a boy, Blair makes a face and calls it degrading, and Natalie non-subtly tries to get Ben's attention as she chirps, "Sounds like it could be fun!" Ben mumbles, "I guess" then springs up from his chair and rushes over to the other side of the room. Natalie follows him and asks him if the idea to make the dance a Sadie Hawkins event was his brainchild, and he goes, "Yep" then flees the cafeteria altogether. Ouch. Tootie tells a crestfallen Natalie that she should totally ask Ben to be her date, and Natalie says it's probably not a good idea, since - considering the way he regularly averts his eyes from her and grunts one syllable answers to her questions - it's obvious that he has absolutely zero interest in her. Based on the interaction that just occurred, that would be my assessment as well. Mrs. Garrett says she thinks it's a sign he really likes her [crazy talk, in my opinion], then suggests that asking him out might be a good way to break the ice. Natalie says she'd prefer to ask a guy out on her terms, not 'cause she's being pressured to by the organizers of a Sadie Hawkins dance. Tootie gushes about how excited she is to invite a boy to the dance - but Natalie tells her she shouldn't bother, then pronounces that no one is actually planning on going to the dumb thing. Blair says she's definitely not going - 'cause in her world, a girl asking out a boy goes against the laws of nature. Jo chimes in and says she has no desire to ask out any of "those twerps" to a dance. Tootie looks miffed at the lack of interest in the dance and insists that she still wants to go...but Natalie warns her that if she does, she'd be abandoning her principles and setting back women's rights and everything else that famous feminists like Gloria Steinem have worked so hard for. Tootie rolls her eyes at the nonsensical, self-serving bullcack and declares that she has every intention of asking out a boy and having a fabulous time at the dance.
Tootie is on the phone with a boy named Ron, asking him out to a movie...and when she finishes the call, she gabbles to the gals about how energized she is to suddenly have the courage to ask out guys, and that it's opened up a whole new world for herself. She suddenly goes, "Ack!" when she realizes that she accidentally invited two boys to see the same movie...then decides to just roll with it and says, "Oh well." Natalie snarks at her to take a break from asking out boys, then whines to Mrs. Garrett that Tootie is working her way through every datable boy at Bates. Mrs. Garrett urges Natalie to not boycott the dance, then wisely flees the room when Natalie and Tootie get into another tedious snipefest. Natalie tries to convince Tootie that the real fun will be had not at the dance, but in the cafeteria where she, Blair, and Jo have plans to hang out in their PJs and spend the evening playing cards and pigging out on junk food without any boys watching. Tootie haughtily replies that she'd much rather eat like a bird with guys watching. Blair breezes into the room and announces that she now feels compelled to ask a boy to the dance 'cause she's worried that people might start to think she wasn't able to get a date. She then remarks on how satisfying it will feel to bestow upon the chosen boy the thrill of Blair Warner asking him to escort her to a dance.
A few seconds later, Jo bursts in and excitedly tells everyone she met boy named Mitch at the arcade...and that she liked him so much she invited him to the Sadie Hawkins dance. Natalie's all, "Wha-a?!" and tries to convince her to cancel so that she doesn't end up staying home alone like a loser, but Jo barks at her to give it a rest.
Natalie complains to Mrs. Garrett that her friends are sellouts, and Mrs. Garrett tells her to shut it and just ask a damn boy to the dance already. Tootie concurs and urges her to pick up the phone and call Ben - but Natalie denies having any desire to do that, then sadly says he's probably already been asked out. Mrs. Garrett murmurs, "Maybe not" then tells her she has some dish to share from the last dance committee meeting. Apparently, word on the street is that some hussy named Eunice Shram is gearing up to ask Ben to the dance. Tootie's like, "Ack!" and urges Natalie to call Ben before it's too late - but Natalie glumly says it's probably already too late, plus she doesn't want to face the inevitable rejection. Mrs. Garrett urges Natalie to at least give it a shot, but she wails, "What if he says no? Or laughs?" then says she'd rather stay home in her PJs than risk the humiliation of putting herself out there and getting turned down.
Jo stomps into the cafeteria and announces that she's not going to the dance after all. Apparently, Mitch suddenly remembered that he's competing in some kind of sports tournament on Saturday night. Tootie re-enters the cafeteria after taking a phone call and tells everyone that Michael is now refusing to go to the dance with her 'cause he found out she's also been out with his roommate...along with everyone else in his friend circle. She then perks up and says, "I can just call someone else!" Blair sadly announces that she did have a string of guys lined up who were anxiously waiting to be asked out by her...but when she finally made her choice and selected Donald, he told her she waited too long and accepted another invitation. She then asked her second, third, and fourth choices...but, like Donald, none of them wanted to wait around for her indefinitely, and accepted invitations from other girls. Tootie re-enters the room after working the phones to score herself another date, and glumly says she can't convince any Bates guy to trust that she's not going to step out on him. Natalie claps delightedly and says it's official: they're all going to stay in and spend Saturday night playing bridge!
It's Saturday night, and the Facts gals are decked out in their unsightly flannel PJs, playing cards. Blair, who's got green face cream spread across her face, stonily insists on remaining in denial that she's sitting at home on a Saturday night. Mrs. Garrett enters the cafeteria, all dolled up for the dance, and says she's off to pick up her date. A few seconds later, Ben arrives after being lured there by Mrs. Garrett under the pretence of needing to pick up some records and table cloths for the dance. He shyly says hi to Natalie - and Mrs. Garrett suddenly decides she needs everyone's help in the kitchen, then instructs Natalie to show Ben where they keep the records. As Natalie leads Ben over to the lounge, he asks her if she's going to the dance...and she says, "No" and he goes, "Me neither." She stares at him in surprise and says she figured he'd be going with Eunice Shram...and he tells her that Eunice did invite him, but he declined 'cause the girl he wanted to go with didn't invite him. He boldly adds, "I want you to know, we would have had a great time" and Natalie perks up and goes, "We?!!" and Ben nods and says that since it's a Sadie Hawkins event, he's not technically allowed to ask her. She goes, "Do you want me to ask you?" and he says yes and officially accepts her invitation. That seemed like an implausible shift in his attitude towards her, but OK. Natalie is suddenly giddy with teenage girl excitement, then looks down at her PJs in horror and excuses herself to go upstairs and put on some clothes. She asks Ben why he never asked her out before, and he sheepishly tells her he was afraid of rejection...and Natalie chuckles and says that's almost as silly as her being afraid to ask him out.
Natalie announces to Mrs. Garrett and the Facts gals that she will be going to the dance after all. Mrs. Garrett looks thrilled for her, while pajama-clad Jo, Blair, and Tootie shoot her simultaneous stink-eyes. They sarcastically ask, "What about your principles? Women's rights?" and Natalie breezily tells them not to be bores, then rushes upstairs to change. The studio audience then starts tepidly clapping, since it wasn't quite obvious to them that this is where the writers decided to abruptly end the episode.
Recap: This dull-as-fuck episode is The Facts of Life's second attempt to turn a pilot into a spin-off series titled "The Academy" ... and it's really too bad the producers didn't throw in the towel after the first try, 'cause yikes. That said, let's begin..
Alfred Webster, a dorkish cadet at the Stone Military Academy, calls up Natalie and reminds her that he was her date at his school's military dance in Season 3. Natalie looks less than thrilled to hear from him, and somehow refrains from laughing out loud when he informs her that he's decided to take their relationship to the next logical step...and by next logical step, he means he's inviting her to the Academy to watch him compete in a boxing tournament. Natalie says she'll need to check her schedule, then covers the phone receiver and looks pleadingly at Mrs. Garrett and the rest of the Facts gals for some kind of helpful advice. Jo tells her she'd consider a boxing tournament a fun date...and Blair rolls her eyes and says, "You would" - but urges Natalie to go, if only 'cause she'll be one of a few females among hundreds of handsome cadets. Natalie perks up at that desirable ratio and eagerly tells Alfred she'd be delighted to stop by the Academy and cheer him on.
Alfred is in his dorm room, immersed in a book about boxing. His roommates - Buzz, Chip, and Hank - bust a gut laughing when he tells them he entered the upcoming boxing tournament...then look slightly impressed when he brags about how his girl Natalie is coming to watch him. He then admits that the real reason he entered the tournament was to please his father, who was once a heavyweight boxing champion. Alfred's friends worry he may not be physically up to the challenge (well d'yuh), but things look less dire after Buzz checks out the list of entrants in his weight division and decides there's a chance he won't get completely pummelled. The three all offer to help whip Alfred into shape.
Alfred is alone in the dorm room, struggling to make it past ten pushups when his roommates suddenly burst in. The four banter about boxing...blah blah...and Buzz, Chip, and Hank simultaneously give Alfred various tips for the tournament. Buzz insists that the key to victory is loading up on carbs, while Chip argues that he should be building muscle by lifting weights. My personal advice would be for the kid to spend less time gabbling with his friends in his dorm room and more time training in the boxing ring - but, who knows, maybe that's been happening off-camera.
Major Dorsey enters the Academy's gym, where the boys are working out in advance of the tournament. An attractive female lieutenant, Barbara Burton, tells Major Dorsey she's concerned about the less muscular boys getting injured in the ring, but Dorsey assures her there's no danger of anyone getting hurt...however, when he scans the list of participants and sees Alfred's name, he quickly takes that back. He pulls Alfred aside and asks him if he fully understands that he's entered a boxing tournament, and Alfred confirms that he does, and that he's mostly doing it so his father will pay attention to him and give him the all-important approval he seeks. Dorsey solemnly nods and tells him he's looking forward to meeting the General. From that I guess we can assume that Papa Webster is a bigwig in the military hierarchy.
Alfred learns that his first match-up will be with a skinny nerd named Grusky, the same actor who played uber-dork Eugene in Grease. George Knight, the douchebag cadet no one seems to like, struts inside the gym and brags to everyone that he's coaching a boxing phenom named Michael "Mongo" Moran...and then parades the muscular, tough looking Mongo around the gym. George teases Alfred about his paunchy little body, and then a bunch of cadets take bets on who they think is going to win the tournament.
Major Dorsey is on the phone with General Webster, pleading with him to not cancel his plans to attend the boxing tournament, and tells him that Alfred only entered the tournament to impress him. When it's clear that the General doesn't give a rat's ass about throwing his son a bone, Dorsey snappishly tells him to break the bad news to Alfred himself...then hangs up and mutters about how shitty it is when parents neglect their kids.
After loading up on too many carbs, Alfred weighs in at 140 lbs, which means he's officially in the welterweight category and will likely be matched up against Mongo. Alfred stares at the scale, and then at his friends in horror.
After the commercial break, Buzz, Hank, and Chip strategize [in vain] about how Alfred might defeat Mongo in the ring. When Natalie arrives at the Academy, Alfred is all, "Ack!" and tells her she doesn't have to stay for the tournament...but she tells him she's all into it now 'cause she wants to write about it for the school paper. A few seconds later, Mongo enters the gym, and Natalie looks impressed at his toned bod. Alfred motions at Mongo and tells her he's going to be matched up with him, and Natalie bursts out laughing...but then stops when she realizes he's being serious. Alfred tries to laugh it off, but admits he's pretty freaked out. Natalie advises him to drop out of the tournament asap, but Alfred says he can't back out 'cause his father is traveling 300 miles to watch him box. He then warns her that the match could get ugly, and that she should feel free to step outside the gym, or at least shield her eyes.
Mongo looks all muscular and no-nonsense as he lifts weights and pummels the punching bag...and Alfred, Hank, Chip, and Buzz exchange concerned and - in Alfred's case - terrified glances. Hank rushes over to Lieutenant Burton and tells her that Alfred has suddenly come down with something...but when Major Dorsey enters the room, Alfred changes his mind and says he feels just fine. He tells the Major he's excited about his dad coming to watch him box, and Dorsey makes an oops face and tells him they need to talk in private.
Dorsey informs Alfred that he spoke to his father on the phone, and was told he won't be able to make the boxing tournament after all. Alfred looks bummed and grumbles about how his father never makes the time to come to his stuff. He decides to enter the tournament anyway, and Dorsey commends him for his bravery, but urges him to do it solely for himself.
Seconds after the tournament gets underway, Grusky gets knocked out in the first round and is carried out of the ring. Natalie begs Alfred not to go through with this and jokes that she prefers him to be in one piece. When Mongo enters the gym, Buzz hatches a last-ditch plan to spare Alfred from total humiliation and asks Mongo if he's taking physics this semester...and when Mongo says he is, Buzz tells him that Alfred is the best physics tutor at the academy. Mongo furrows his brows as he contemplates that, then enters the ring with Alfred. He lets Alfred get in a few good punches, presumably so he doesn't burn his bridges with the school's best physics tutor...but when George Knight gets upset at his protege's lacklustre performance, Mongo gives Alfred a hard punch to the head and knocks him down. To wrap the episode up quick, Mongo is declared the winner of the tournament...but he makes a point of complimenting Alfred for his gutsy performance and hopes there are no hard feelings. He then looks hopeful as he chirps, "See you in physics class!" and scampers off. Natalie rushes over to Alfred to make sure he's still fully intact...and Major Dorsey gives him a thumbs-up and says, "Nice fight." Alfred nods proudly and says he did it for himself - but, that said, he hopes to never enter a boxing ring again.
Recap: Mrs. Garrett and the Facts girls are doing an inventory of all the food that's currently in the pantry. Mrs. Garrett says she "juggles" the budget so she can allocate money toward fruits and vegetables, 'cause apparently the board is weirdly stingy about feeding the Eastland girls fresh produce. Blair scrunches her face in puzzlement and asks her why she doesn't simply ask for more cash if she needs it - the way she asks her rich, overindulgent daddy - and Mrs. Garrett explains that she's filled out all the requisite forms, but the dickish headmaster refuses to budge. Jo changes the subject and announces that she and her felonious father are going to a ball game later, then lays it on thick about how much fun they have whenever they attend sporting events together. Blair's like, "That's nice, I have a meeting with an IRS auditor", 'cause apparently he has a few questions about her tax return...and she's unable to reach her father, who's in Nigeria on business. Mrs. Garrett asks her why an unemployed teenage girl would even need to fill out a tax return, so Blair explains that her father has given her a job as a pretend fashion consultant so he can get a tax break on her monthly allowance. Mrs. Garrett chuckles and says, "How much could your allowance possibly be?" and Blair says she gets about $10,000...and when Jo exclaims, "A year?!" Blair grins and clarifies, "A month!" (Holy crap!) She then says she doesn't actually keep all that dough, since most of it is put in the bank or invested. Mrs. Garrett warns her that IRS auditors take their work very seriously, but Blair says she's confident she can handle the situation with her charm, wit, and superior intelligence.
Blair is decked out in a bright red blouse and pretty skirt and tells the gals she's looking forward to developing a flirty rapport with the IRS auditor, then breezily says their meeting is going to go just fine. A few seconds later, a bespectacled nerd in a grisly plaid suit enters the cafeteria and says he's here to meet with Blair Warner...and she grins, stretches out her hand, and coquettishly says, "Hi there." He gets right down to business and pulls out her ginormous tax return from his file folder and starts off by asking her if she's employed at her father's company as a fashion consultant. Blair pretends she is...and when he asks her what the job entails, she tells him she watches for trends, gauges reactions to trends, and reads Cosmo. The auditor's like, "Mmm hmm" and asks her if she has any receipts for all the clothing that was itemized on her tax return, and she's like, "Oops! I threw them away!" - but says the ensemble she's wearing is part of that wardrobe, and springs up to briefly model it for him. LOL. The auditor's like, "Mmm hmm" and asks her where she stores all of her tax deductible equipment - e.g. the TV set, telex, and computer monitor - and she stares cluelessly into space and pretends she has no idea where on earth she put all that equipment. The auditor wryly asks her if it's possible that she leased the equipment to her father's company with an option to purchase...and she starts to look very sheepish and mumbles something unintelligible. The auditor tells her there are all kinds of irregularities with her foreign tax credits, schedules, and stock losses...then says it's painfully obvious that her father invented a job title for her in order to avoid paying taxes, and added a bizarre list of assets attributed to her ownership that no auditor with a half a brain would ever believe was on the up-and-up. He tells Blair he'll be back on Monday and advises her to revise her tax return. As he heads toward the exit, a panicked Blair wails, "I want my daddy!" and the IRS auditor cheekily retorts, "So do we." Heh.
Later, Mrs. Garrett and the Facts gals help Blair sift through her piles of tax papers. Blair soon realizes that, on paper, she's the owner of a bunch of weird stuff, like a pig farm in Arkansas and a cannery in Guam. Jo looks over a stack of papers and says it looks like her father has been writing off vacations as business trips, then rattles off a short list: Geneva, Rome, Madrid, Barbados. Blair pales and says that must be a mistake...and Natalie makes a face and chirps, "Sounds a little illegal." Tootie says, as a daughter of two attorneys, it's her professional opinion that her father could go to prison over this kind of thing...and Jo snarkishly asks Blair if it doesn't totally bug her that her father stuck her with this mess, then fucked off to Nigeria and left her holding the bag. She growls, "He's cheating the government!" and Blair nonsensically replies, "It's not cheating. It's business" and says it's no different from how Mrs. Garrett fudges the food budget in order to buy fresh fruits and vegetables. Jo says there's a big difference - but Mrs. Garrett interjects and admits that what she's doing is wrong, then is all, "Ah fuck it" and announces that she's going to amend her budget report to reflect the dietary needs of the students and continue fighting for what's right. Good luck making headway with your idiot headmaster, Edna.
Natalie tells Blair that her father called and said he's on his way to Eastland. Blair looks relieved and smugly tells Jo, "You see? Daddy will take care of everything." She condescendingly tells Jo she just doesn't understand, and Jo snarlishly points out that it was very very shitty of him to put his own daughter in a difficult spot with the IRS over a few lousy bucks.
A vapid looking Papa Warner arrives at Eastland, coos at Blair, "Are you OK, princess?" and says he knows how distressing the pesky IRS can be. He assures her that his attorneys are doing their best to sort out his creative accounting, and Blair complains that the IRS auditor made her feel like a criminal - even though his curiosity was pretty reasonable, given that her tax return is as thick as a phone book. She asks him why he didn't tell her about all the assets that were listed in it, and he waves a hand in the air and says he didn't want her to worry her pretty little head about it. When she cites the strange assets that he attributed to her ownership - the pig farm in Arkansas and cannery in Guam - Papa Warner says they're terrific investments that save him a ton of cash in the long run. He then says he's thinking about making her into a corporation (the fuck?) and calling it Princess, Inc. - but Blair wails, "I don't wanna be a corporation! I just wanna be your daughter!" She complains about how he wrote off all of their vacations as business trips, and that everything they do together always has a price tag attached to it. Papa Warner looks befuddled and says that this reminds him a lot of the conversation he had with her mother before she dumped his ass and filed for divorce. He then avoids anything resembling self-reflection and asks Blair if he's such a terrible father, and she remembers how much she enjoys riding his 10K a month gravy train and quickly says no...then thinks back to the contrived gushing Jo's been doing about going to ball games with her fun, felonious father and asks Papa Warner if he'd take her to a baseball game sometime. He laughs and reminds her she hates sports, so she says she doesn't care what they do - she just wants them to spend time together without it being a tax write-off. Papa Warner pretends to consider the request, then says he'll get back to her after his upcoming business trip...and a visibly disappointed Blair says, "Sure, OK", then turns her back on him and stares mournfully into space. He pulls an envelop out of his front pocket and tells Blair it's her allowance check, then smarmily adds, "You've always been my best girl" ... and she takes the envelop ('cause d'yuh) and murmurs, "I know" as he casually saunters out of the room.
Jo tentatively enters the lounge and asks Blair whassup with the envelop she's clutching...and Blair sadly replies, "It's my father..." then lets her voice trail off as she stares moodily into space.
Recap: Mrs. Garrett notices Natalie hitting the books in the cafeteria and praises her for being so focused on her schoolwork for the past several hours. Natalie explains that she's studying psychology and is utterly fascinated with the complexity of the brain. Jo bursts in with her friend Doug, who she's been working with at the motorcycle shop for the last five weeks. She excitedly tells the Facts gals that today she fixed a totally "dead bike", and her boss Garo looked it over and grunted, "Huh. It works" - which, for him, is extraordinarily high praise. Jo thanks Doug for convincing Garo to hire her, which wasn't an easy sell 'cause normally the curmudgeon would never consider employing females. Doug explains to the gals that Garo is "old fashioned" about women.
Blair enters the cafeteria and announces that she broke daddy's Porsche - aka his pride and joy - and is worried he's going to freak out and do something drastic, like cut off her credit. She turns to Mrs. Garrett and wails, "What do I dooooo?!" then suddenly perks up and says, "I know! I'll just buy him a new one!" but then looks despondent again and says he'd probably be able to tell the difference. Jo asks her exactly what she did to the car, so she sheepishly says she accidentally shifted from third to reverse, then starts panicking again 'cause she needs to return the car to her father by Friday. Jo tells her if she brings it into the motorcycle shop she'll try to fix it...and Blair looks unsure 'bout that, but agrees when Jo points out that she has no other options. Doug tells Jo he's going to head out now - but that he'll come by at 7:30pm so they can grab a pizza and catch a movie. Tootie, who I notice hasn't had a storyline during the last several episodes, gets all in their faces and chirps, "That sounds great!" Blair shoots Jo the stink-eye and wails, "How can you play modern romance when daddy’s car is fighting for its life?” and Jo snarks back that she and Doug have a business relationship, nothing more. A skeptical Tootie asks if that's really true, and Jo snaps at her to mind her own damn business.
At the motorcycle shop, Doug compliments Jo on her kick-ass work in fixing a bike's engine, then tells her he really really enjoyed their evening at the arcade. The two lean toward each other and smooch - then quickly break apart when Garo stomps in, refers to Jo as Joan of Arco, and asks her how the Warner's Porsche is coming along. She tells him it's going pretty good - and Garo grumpishly asks her if she's really a girl, tells her she's good for business, and thanks her for expanding his business by bringing in an expensive car to fix. He tells Doug he's glad he listened to him about hiring her, gushes about her extensive knowledge of motorcycles, and leaves. Jo and Doug play kissy-face again, and this time they're interrupted by Mrs. Garrett and the rest of the Facts gals. Blair looks horrified at the sight of daddy's car in pieces and wails, "What happened?!" so Jo explains that she usually has to take a car apart before it can be fixed and properly put back together again. Garo comes over to see whassup, and doesn't look thrilled by all the females suddenly milling around his garage, so Jo explains that they came by to check up on the Porsche. Mrs. Garrett tells Garo about what a super awesome mechanic Jo is [in case viewers missed hearing it the first ten times], and he mumbles, "I know" then barks at Mrs. Garrett to keep her mitts off of his tools. LOL. He then chooses that moment to make a special announcement, and prefaces it by explaining that the weekend Service Manager, Rex, has just resigned. He pats Jo on the head and says, "Congratulations. You got the job" and Mrs. Garrett and the Facts gals gather around Jo and squeal excitedly...but when Jo looks over at Doug to get his reaction, she's met with a pissy scowl.
Later, Doug is pissily throwing tools around...and when Jo asks him whassup, he snaps, "Nuthin'." When she tries to advise him on what might be wrong with the engine he's currently working on, he gets all snappish and says if he's not doing it right she should do it herself. She calmly explains that sometimes the problem is electrical (not mechanical - the conclusion he always seems to jump to), and he screeches, "You're the boss!" and whines about how her promotion has discombobulated his male sensibilities and metamorphosed him into a passive-aggressive moody girl-child. She reminds him that they're still a team, and he snaps, "I work for you now" then storms out of the garage like the insecure, immature little dickwad he's quickly proving himself to be.
When Jo arrives home, Blair asks her how the Porsche is coming along, and she barks, "It'll be ready on time! Get off my case!" Blair looks taken aback and goes, "OK, OK. Whatever you say. You're the boss" and that last remark triggers a rant from Jo about about how people keep calling her the boss. A puzzled Mrs. Garrett asks her whaddup with her sudden bitchitude...and Natalie tiptoes over and quietly informs her that, based on her psychology readings, it appears to be "a classic case of latent psychosis with neurotic overtones". Haha! Jo grumbles about how today was supposed to be a great day - a chance to prove herself in her new job - but, everything got ruined 'cause Doug acted like a bitchy, oversensitive prick the entire time. Tootie points out that he's probably disappointed that he wasn't promoted, and Jo says she gets that, but figured he was a liberated enough guy to at least be happy for her. Natalie tells her that that doesn't usually happen in real life situations, and that a lot of guys can't handle reporting to a woman. Mrs. Garrett argues that not all men are like that, then reveals that she used to date Howard the Cook during the time she was his supervisor. Um...OK. Not only is that hook-up a retroactively disturbing visual alert...but it's also very weird that the writers would throw a shout-out to Howard in the script of a feminist-centric episode, considering the blatant sexist douchebaggery with which he was introduced in Season's The New Girl, Part 2 episode:
Mrs. Garrett tells Howard the Cook that he no longer needs to find kitchen help; he now has four helpers! Howard nods approvingly and dickishly declares, "A woman's place is in the kitchen" and he gets a lot of boos from the studio audience and is appropriately referred to as a chauvinist pig by Natalie.
Mrs. Garrett tells Jo to treat Doug with respect, and maybe he'll respond by being more secure in his masculinity...'cause, yeah, that's realistic. Blair, meanwhile, dispenses her pearls of wisdom:
Garo is ambling around the garage while Jo and a sullen Doug plug away at some bike repair. Blair and Mrs. Garrett arrive to pick up the Porsche, and Blair is thrilled when she learns that the car has been restored to its default settings. Doug, meanwhile, is continuing to act like a whiny little bitch...and Jo throws up her hands and says she has no idea what to do about it. Blair says, "Of course you do" ... so Jo rolls her eyes, then tells Doug she can't seem to find the strength to tighten one of the bolts on the bike she's working on. He comes over, easily tightens it, and smugly says, "Sometimes it just takes a little extra muscle" and Jo forces out a girlish giggle and coos, "You're so right!" Blair nods approvingly, while Mrs. Garrett looks a mixture of perplexed and icked out. Natalie and Tootie arrive at the garage and say hey to Doug, just as Garo wheels in another damaged motorcycle for Jo to look it over. She quickly does, and says it looks like the electrical system is shot - then suggests that he give it to Doug to fix, since fixing electrical stuff is his specialty. Garo looks irked by the suggestion, orders her to handle it, and saunters off. Doug tells Jo he's surprised that she praised him to Garo just now, but reminds her that Garo told her to fix it. Jo says he should go ahead and do it 'cause she suddenly thinks of herself as a silly, inept girl who doesn't know a carburetor from a piece of cardboard. Blair pulls her aside and reminds her that her advice was to act helpless - not brainless. And that she doesn't need to pretend to not know how to fix a bike. Jo grumbles that she hates acting like a dumb female at all...and Mrs. Garrett weighs in and tells her that anyone who truly cares about her will want her to be everything she can, not just what his fragile little ego is comfortable with.
Garo sees Doug working on the bike, gets annoyed, and admonishes Jo for not doing the work herself. Jo stammers out an apology, but he cuts her off and says he's demoting her 'cause although she's a great mechanic, she sucks as a manager. After he stomps out, Doug shakes his head faux sympathetically and goes, "Tough break" and offers to take her out for pizza. She gives him an incredulous stare and says, "So...everything is OK with you, now that I'm not your boss anymore?" and Doug admits to being caught off-balance by the very confusing male/female reversal he's had to contend with this episode, and says, "I'm not a bad guy. I just need things to be a certain way." Jo mutters, "Right" and turns down his offer for pizza and 'cause she'd rather have lunch with her friends. She then smugly informs him that the bike he's working on is "running rough" not 'cause of the carburetor, but because of the timing coils. Haha! In yer face, dickwad! Doug scrunches his face in confusion and is all, "Timing coils? Wha-a?" while Jo shoots him a final glare and stalks out.
Recap: Everyone is gushing over Natalie for landing a plum gig writing a column called Nat's Chat: A Teenager's Look At the World in a New York newspaper called The Beat. Fellow Eastlander, Bland Brenda (last seen in the Four Musketeers episode), snootily scoffs that no one actually reads The Beat, but Tootie snarks back that it's a hot, hip, and happening paper. After Brenda flounces off in a huff, Jo rushes over and tells Natalie that her mom just arrived, and Natalie giddily says they have plans to go to lunch and celebrate her new column...then goes upstairs to grab her coat and purse. Jo finds an old yo-yo in her pocket, and for some reason the writers figured that this discovery was enough to create a subplot around. Jo performs a few fancy yo-yo tricks, and everyone is so impressed that they start wooting and clapping. Jo eyes Blair and boasts that only someone with a high level of skill and concentration can work a yo-yo...and Blair takes this as a challenge and attempts some beginner yo-yo moves, but when it's clear that she has zero yo-yo-ing abilities, Jo laughs and calls her a klutz. Blair declares that in one week she'll be able to do everything with a yo-yo that Jo can do. Fantastic. Can't wait.
Mama Green enters the cafeteria, and everyone rushes over to greet her. She asks them how Natalie is taking the excitement of being a New York columnist, and Tootie assures her that nothing fazes Natalie. Cue Natalie, who enters the room wearing sunglasses and a scarf "casually" thrown around her neck so she looks celeb-like. Blair, meanwhile, gets her finger stuck in the yo-yo string, and Mrs. Garrett hustles her over to the kitchen to pry it loose. Natalie urges her mom to talk to Mr. Parker about granting her permission to miss classes on Fridays so that she can attend editors' meetings in New York, but Mama Green cagily replies, "We can discuss that at lunch." When Natalie presses her for an answer, she breaks the news that she and Papa Green have discussed the column and decided that there would be too many deadlines and too much pressure for a teenager to reasonably handle. Natalie assures her she can handle it, but Mama Green argues that she shouldn't have to deal with such a high level of stress at her age, and would prefer that she spent her spare time having fun. Natalie snaps, "I hate fun!" and asks Tootie to corroborate her hatred of fun, but Tootie can't bring herself to do it. Natalie begs her mother to reconsider and says she neeeeds to be able to express her creativity - but Mama Green tells her there's plenty of time for her to focus on a career, and that she hates saying no but feels that her decision is what's best. Natalie grumbles that she has no idea what kind of damage this is doing to her future career as a writer and that she can't possibly understand what's going on inside of her. Mama Green says, "Of course I can. I'm your mother" but Natalie bitterly retorts, "You're not my real mother!" Ouch. Tootie, who is somehow still in the room and brazenly eavesdropping on their argument, gasps and goes, "Natalie!" but Natalie owns her bitchitude and rails, "Well, she's not! My real mother would understand!" She then calls Mama Green a stranger and storms out of the room.
Natalie's reading in the bedroom when Tootie drops in and tries to cheer her up with a funny story about the dumb thing Brenda did in art class - but Natalie wearily says she's not interested. Tootie assumes she's bummed about having to turn down the columnist job, but Natalie says she's actually way more upset about the argument she and her mom had. Tootie suggests she call her mom and tell her she didn't mean what she said, but Natalie stubbornly replies, "I did mean it." She explains that she loves her parents and everything, but also really wants to know where her creative instincts come from. Tootie asks her if she's truly serious about locating her biological parents, and Natalie silently opens her trunk and takes out a small box filled with all the letters she's received from various organizations that help adoptees find their bio parents...and says she's kept her search on the down-low 'cause she feels disloyal for doing this behind her parents' backs. A stunned Tootie poutishly remarks that she's never said anything about any of this to her, and Natalie just kind of shrugs and says it's a moot point, 'cause the organizations won't tell her anything until she turns eighteen...which sucks, 'cause she wants to know all about her bio parents now.
Mrs. Garrett enters the room to hand deliver a letter to Natalie that just arrived. Natalie assumes that the letter is from her mom, telling her what a rotten daughter she is...but when she opens it, she's surprised that it's an acknowledgement from her mom about how their earlier spat was all about her needing answers about her biological parents. Mama Green has also included the name of her bio mom - Ellen Manheim - and Natalie stares solemnly into space as she processes this life-altering information.
Natalie is dressed in a red sweater and pleated skirt and is staring at herself in a full-length mirror to decide if she likes herself in the outfit. She tells Tootie she's about to go meet her bio mom, but has no idea what she's going to say to her. She anxiously asks Blair if her outfit is OK, and Blair tells her she looks just fine. When Jo enters the room, Blair smugly tells her she's been practicing her yo-yo-ing (*&^%$#!!) and would like to demonstrate some tricks. Jo's like, "Yeah whatever" and proceeds to ignore Blair's yo-yo-ing while she assures Natalie that it's totes normal to be nervous and scared about meeting her bio mom - much like she was when she had to awkwardly interact with her dad after he was released from prison in The Secret (episode) in Season 2. With that said, Jo heads for the door - but Blair stops her and says she didn't witness any of her yo-yo-ing. Jo rolls her eyes and invites her to perform a yo-yo trick, so Blair announces that she will perform Around the World, then starts lassoing the yo-yo above her head. When she quickly loses control of the thing, everyone's like, "Ack!" and dives for cover until she safely flings it against the wall. Mrs. Garrett pops in and offers to drive Natalie to the train station, and Natalie pontificates about how she'll soon have all the answers to the questions she's had for so many years, but frets that they may not be the answers she wants. Mrs. Garrett reminds her that she expressed a desire to find her bio parents in Season 1's Adoption episode - but felt that she had some growing up to do before the storyline could be revisited. She tells Natalie she now believes she's fully ready to cope with whatever answers her bio parents give her...after which, viewers can look forward to the issue being dropped entirely.
Natalie arrives at her parents' home and finds Mama Green relaxing in the living room. She explains that she was in New York for the day and thought it would be nice to spend the night in her old room. She tells her mom she feels badly about their argument the other day, and Mama Green says she does too, and the two apologize and hug it out. Mama Green offers to make popcorn and suggests they pass the evening watching a movie together...and as she's heading to the kitchen, Natalie abruptly says, "I met her today." Mama Green looks stunned, and Natalie explains that she was able to track down her birth mother simply by looking her up in the phone book. She says they were both kinda nervous, but they had some cake and a nice chat about everything she's ever wondered about, genetically speaking. Dunno why such a pivotal scene would have taken place off-camera, but...whatevs, writers.
Mama Green does her best to change the subject, in a not-so-subtle fashion, as Natalie continues to gabble about her birth mother. When she mentions that Ellen Manheim wasn't married when she got knocked up, Mama Green snaps, "I don't want to hear about this!" then immediately apologizes and says she didn't expect to react this way. She assures Natalie she's happy for her for finding her birth mother 'cause she knew how important that was to her...but that it kinda sucks for her 'cause she likes being the only mother in her life. Natalie tells her that she got answers to some of the stuff she's always been curious about...but then throws her insecure ma a bone and says there was absolutely nothing of her in Ellen's apartment. She then looks around the Green home, beams, and says, "This is me" and points out all the stuff on the bookshelves that reflect her upbringing and interests...and adds that she and dad had a lot to do with how she turned out. Well duh. Mama Green thanks her for the gracious words and suddenly feels secure enough to tentatively ask about Ellen...and when Natalie pauses and goes, "Are you sure?", Mama Green says she's going to have to know her too. The two then sit on the couch together, and Natalie tells her about all the boooooring crap she and Ellen chatted about...and as that's happening, the camera zooms in on a photo in the background with Natalie and Mama Green hugging.
Recap: Mrs. Garrett and the gals are irked at Roy for missing the breakfast and lunch deliveries of the baked goods they depend on daily. When he finally saunters in, he explains that he got unavoidably delayed 'cause he's training a new assistant - then introduces Leo. Tootie and Natalie appreciatively eye the attractive newcomer...and when Roy murmurs, "He's kinda slow", the gals interpret that to mean he physically moves around in a very slow fashion. Jo snaps at Tootie and Natalie to quit drooling over him...and a few seconds later, Blair breezes into the room carrying a stack of library books. Roy offers to carry them for her, but she tells him to get lost - then sees Leo, perks up at his attractiveness, and lays it on thick about how exhausting it is for a delicate flower such as herself to be carrying such a heavy stack of books. When Leo just stares back at her blankly, she orders Natalie to introduce them, then gushes over what a powerful name Leo is. When Leo just continues to stare blankly at her, she comes right out and says, "I need your help carrying these books", and hands them to him...and the two head off to the library.
Roy flirts with Jo for awhile, then looks around for Leo and says he must have wandered off somewhere. Tootie and Natalie tell him that Leo left with Blair, and Roy scrunches his face in confusion and asks why an it girl like Blair would be interested in someone like Leo. He then shrugs and says, "I suppose with Leo's looks it doesn't matter that he's retarded" and everyone freezes and is all, "Wha-a?!" so Roy explains that when he referred earlier to Leo being slow, he figured they all understood that it meant in the head. Jo snaps, "Well, obviously we didn't" ... and Tootie suddenly looks alarmed and says, "Neither did Blair" and Jo, Tootie, Natalie, and Roy all stare concernedly into space.
Leo is in the school library with Blair, trailing after her as she wanders around the stacks, looking for something new to read. She asks him which authors he recommends, and somehow doesn't get a clue when he just stares at her blankly instead of answering. She asks him why they haven't met before, so he tells her he attends a special school...and by special school, Blair assumes he means a school for the intellectually gifted. She breezily tells him that her parents wanted to send her to a school for gifted kids - but then says she's very happy at Eastland. She asks Leo what he's studying...and when Leo says, "I like to draw", Blair's like, "Me too!" and asks if he prefers oil or acrylics. Leo looks befuddled by the question, then says he likes to use a paintbrush. Blair chuckles at what she thinks is him making a joke...but when he gets that vacant look on his face again, she finally realizes that something is amiss here. She suddenly looks deep in thought, murmurs, "Special school..?" and Leo nods enthusiastically. Blair stares at him in bewilderment, then whirls around and shoots stink-eyes in the direction of the live studio audience. LOL.
Jo and Tootie nervously wonder how long it will take Blair to get a clue about Leo, then fret about all the inappropriate things she's liable to say and do during that time period. Natalie says that one of them is going to have to break the news to Blair, then suggests they draw straws for that undesirable task. When Natalie ends up drawing the short straw, she's all, "Ack!" and implores Mrs. Garrett to advise her on the best way to enlighten Blair, and Mrs. Garrett just shrugs and tells her to be honest. Tootie concurs, then demonstrates how one might tell Blair the truth about Leo by blurting out, "He's retarded." Blair, who just happens to enter the room at that moment, tells everyone to chillax 'cause she's already aware of the status of her new friend's mental capacity. She proudly tells them she's not even going to try to shake him off her leg, but rather make him her new pet project. She excitedly announces that she and Leo have plans to go out on Saturday night - and everyone scrunches their faces in confusion and are all, "Wha-a-a?!"
Late Saturday evening, Tootie is anxiously pacing the cafeteria, waiting for Blair to return home. Natalie reminds her that Blair and Leo went to the movies, but Tootie says she called the movie theater and they told her that the movie already let out. Tootie tells Mrs. Garrett that she's worried about Blair being alone with Leo, specifically because he might turn out to be like Lennie from Of Mice and Men: a sweet retarded man who didn't know his own strength and killed things he loved. Mrs. Garrett tut tuts Tootie about assuming that Leo is dangerous or violent just 'cause he's slow...then recalls, "In my day, we couldn't even talk about retarded people!" Much less exploit them on '80s sitcoms. When Blair returns home, Tootie snaps, "You're late!" and Blair sarcastically retorts, "Sorry mom" and explains that she and Leo decided to walk home after the movie. She says they had a lovely time, and that Leo notices things most people take for granted (e.g. the moon and the stars). She announces that tomorrow she's taking Leo on a tour of Victorian houses in order to "open up horizons for his potential". Mrs. Garrett scrunches her face concernedly - as that pronouncement has disaster written all over it - and reminds her that Leo is special...and that she's not a professional. Blair argues that Leo needs her special attention and assures Mrs. Garrett she's totes down with his specialness.
The Facts girls (minus Blair) are cleaning up the cafeteria after a meal. Jo grumbles about how Blair is never around to pitch in these days, and Natalie reminds her that she's busy broadening Leo's horizons by taking him to art museums, galleries, and concerts. A few seconds later, Blair sweeps in and announces that she's giving Leo another painting lesson in the lounge, then gushes to Mrs. Garrett that he has sooo much talent. When Leo arrives for his lesson a few minutes later, Blair informs him that today they'll be focusing on a technique known as perspective, aka painting something that's far away, meaning smaller. She demonstrates the technique on the canvas, then asks Leo to give it a try...but he doesn't seem to grasp the concept and just mashes his brush on the canvas. Blair grimaces and says she knows he can do better, then orders him to paint a straight line. When he earnestly does as she asks, she barks, "Bolder! Bolder!" and Leo gets so confused and frustrated that he throws a tantrum and knocks down the easel and whips the paints onto the floor. As he tries to flee the lounge, he bumps into Mrs. Garrett, causing the tray of cookies she's carrying to go flying. She asks the distressed lad where he's going, and he bursts into tears and whimpers, "I'm going home" then awkwardly scampers out. A visibly shaken Blair says she has no idea what just happened, so Mrs. Garrett explains that she was pushing him too hard and expecting too much. Blair insists that Leo was making wonderful progress in his art appreciation lessons, but Mrs. Garrett points out that he simply likes pretty pictures, then accuses her of wanting to turn Leo into a non-retarded person. Blair sadly retorts, "I just want him to be the best he can be" and Mrs. Garrett chides her for not accepting him the way he is now: warm, sweet, sensitive ... but, yeah, retarded.
Some time later, Roy and Leo arrive at Eastland to make their daily delivery of baked goods. Roy flirts with Jo, as per usual...and Jo snaps at him to get lost, as per usual, and then warmly greets Leo. Mrs. Garrett asks Roy if they could discuss next week's order in the kitchen...and everyone discreetly clears the room so that Blair and Leo can wrap up the episode with a tender, heart strings pulling moment. She tells him she's very glad to see him, and he looks surprised then sheepishly says he was skeered that she'd be angry with him 'cause of his tantrum the other day. She smiles and says she could never be angry with him...so an emboldened Leo offers to paint her a pretty picture and asks her what she'd like. Blair, who I'm happy to report learned her lesson from the previous scene, wisely replies, "You decide" so Leo excitedly tells her he'd like to draw the view from his window 'cause it has lots of trees and pretty flowers. Blair tells him that that would be won-der-ful...but then Leo suddenly looks anxious and says he's worried she might not like it. Blair urges him to draw the view the way he sees it and promises she'll love it no matter what...and Leo beams, closes his eyes real tight, and happily pumps his fist into the air.
Bravo, Blair. Bravo.
Recap: As the girls set up the cafeteria for a special luncheon, Jo shakes her head in dismay and snarls, "All this fuss for some old lady." Mrs. Garrett tut tuts her and tells her that Marie Thornwell isn't just some old lady - she's the oldest living graduate of Eastland. When Natalie says how fascinating she finds this bit of trivia, Jo tells her she should interview the old lady for the school paper. I guess Jo [and the severely continuity-challenged writers] forgot that Natalie was forced to resign from the school paper two episodes ago after writing the faux abortion article...not to mention her termination from the paper two episodes prior to that for expressing her anti-book banning beliefs. Natalie tells Jo she's too busy to do the interview and reminds her that it's her assignment, and Jo grumbles about having to listen to some rich old lady gabble on about how much she's worth...and says she gets enough of that from Blair. Mrs. Garrett tells the girls that Marie is a living legend, and Jo astutely retorts that the only reason anyone at Eastland gives a hoot about this fossil is 'cause she's donating a sizeable chunk o' cash to the school.
Mr. Parker bursts into the room and reminds the girls how important it is to kiss Marie Thornwell's ass throughout her visit, then checks in with Mrs. Garrett to ensure that she made the woman's favorite strudel. A few seconds later, Marie Thornwell arrives at the school (much earlier than expected) and bitches at Mr. Parker for not being in his office. Blair pleasantly remarks to the other Facts gals that this oldest living graduate doesn't look eighty-three, and Marie overhears her and bitchily snaps, "This is what eighty-three looks like!" Mr. Parker tries to steer Marie over to a chair, but she slaps his hand away and says she's perfectly capable of walking. She then recalls her most pleasant memories of Eastland, and points to a corner of the cafeteria and dreamily says she had her first kiss - in 1918 - in that very corner. Mrs. Garrett gently corrects her and says it probably occurred in the old commons, since this cafeteria was built in the 1950s. Marie snappishly insists that the kiss happened where she just said it happened...and Mrs. Garrett agrees with her version of history, apologizes for knowing so little about Eastland, and promises to flagellate herself with a whip later.
Mr. Parker suggests to Marie that she take a nap in Mrs. Garrett's bed...and when Marie sarcastically asks if she's being sent to her room, he says he simply wants to ensure that she's comfortable. Blair politely introduces herself to the bitchy old crow and says she's probably familiar with the rich Warner family - but Marie makes a face and derisively retorts, "No. You must be new money." When Mr. Parker introduces her to the other three Facts gals, Jo blurts out, "I hear you got a lot of money" and asks her how much the school is hitting her up for...and Marie stares back at her with a mixture of horror and incredulity. Mrs. Garrett emerges from the kitchen with a tray of tea and strudel...and after a short snack time, Marie announces that she wants Jo to help her upstairs so she can take a nap.
Jo chides Marie for being so slow walking up the stairs and barks, "My gramma could do it fastuh, and she has a plastic knee!" Badoom bah. Marie gets upset and says she's not accustomed to being dealt with in so rude a manner, and Jo shrugs and says it's the only manner she's got. Marie hands her her plate with the strudel on it, but Jo declines and says, "No thank you, Marie" and Marie shoots her the stink-eye and haughtily says, "Feel free to call me Marie." Jo explains that she finds it too stuffy to use Mr. or Mrs., then asks if she can interview her for the school paper. Marie likes that idea and launches into an over-the-top description of herself when she was a dainty lass of fourteen years. When Jo interrupts her to brusquely remind her that she's supposed to be asking the questions, Marie barks, "Just take notes!" and resumes talking. She gabbles about how wonderful Eastland was in 1918, and that the student body was filled with debutantes and socialites. Jo needlessly chirps, "I'm from the Bronx" and Marie frowns with disdain and asks her what in the hell she's doing here. Jo says she's on a full scholarship, and Marie mocks her attempt to climb out of poverty like the pull yourself up by your bootstraps types she routinely looks down upon. Jo snarks, "Do you have anything against poverty?" and Marie says she doesn't mind it in its proper place. She says, in her day, Eastland did not play host to girls in her "position"...and Jo glares at her and is about to berate her for her cunty snobbery when Mr. Parker suddenly bursts into the room. He says he just popped by the make sure that the nap was going OK, then quickly hustles Jo out of the room before she gets any more tempted to smack the old bird.
At the luncheon, Mr. Parker is publicly thanking Marie for her charitable donation when she suddenly interrupts him and says she's changed her mind. Instead of giving Eastland a donation, she's going to leave her entire fortune to Jo from the Bronx. Jo's all, "Wha-a?" and Mrs. Garrett, Tootie, and Natalie woot happily while Blair stares disbelievingly into space.
In the aftermath of Jo being declared Marie Thornwell's sole beneficiary, she's taken to all the fanciest restaurants in the city, along with various other places the rich and aimless tend to congregate. As the Facts gals discuss their friend's sudden good fortune, Jo enters the cafeteria decked out in what can only be described as a frumpy Victorian tea party dress that's about three sizes too big...and she's "accessorized" it with white pantyhose and black Mary Janes. OMFG. Blair deadpans, "Are you looking for the Easter parade?" - bwahahaha! - and Tootie jokingly says she's never seen her in such a lovely get-up. Jo mumbles, "Marie likes it" and says they're dining at Pierre's later, then stopping by a music store to buy her a harp 'cause Marie wants her to take up the instrument. Jo makes it clear that she's only putting up with this humiliating onslaught so she can gift her mother some much needed cash...and will also consider spreading the wealth to her friends. Tootie and Natalie like the sound of that and do their best to suck up.
Blair gleefully announces that she recently spoke to her mother's stockbroker and learned that the Warners are richer than Marie Thornwell. Jo announces that she's going to Marie's place for dinner, then says that since the motorcycle makes the old lady antsy she'll be taking the bus. Tootie frowns disapprovingly and wails, "What's happening to you?" just as Marie arrives unexpectedly. She gives Jo's camouflage jacket and loose-fitting t-shirt and pants a disdainful once-over and says she doesn't like the outfit one bit. She hands her a bag and orders her to change into the uniform of the Ladies of the Colonies club - and Jo laughs and calls it "a snooty club" whose members wear funny looking beanies. She tells Marie she most definitely doesn't belong there, but Marie refers to it as her club and insists that Jo join...and Jo remembers the kind of cash that's at stake and agrees that it's a fantastic idea.
Tootie strenuously objects to Jo joining the snooty club, and lectures her about integrity as though any of this is her business. When Jo confronts Marie and tries to stammer her displeasure at being ordered to join a stuffy girls' club, Marie abruptly announces that she has one more surprise up her sleeve: she wants Jo to move in with her...and has already arranged for a moving company to collect her things. Jo looks horrified at the prospect of living under the same roof as this pushy monster and says she likes living at Eastland and that all of her friends are here. Marie says she can see them during the day, then sternly reminds her that she has much to do to prepare herself for her new life as her human pet.
Tootie chides Jo for having no backbone, and Jo snarks back that she's only selling her soul so she can help her mom.
Mr. Parker enters the cafeteria to inform everyone that he just spoke to Marie's lawyer and learned that she has a habit of regularly changing her will. Apparently she enjoys making impromptu announcements about an unwitting beneficiary, then changes her mind once that person has displeased her. Jo is livid that the old woman dangled her fortune in front of her when it's clear she had no intention of keeping her word. Mrs. Garrett reminds her that no one twisted her arm to go along with this insanity...but then concedes that Marie is a pretty fucked up individual who uses her vast wealth to get love and attention.
Armed with this inside information, Jo strides over to the lounge and tells Marie she's refusing to try on the Ladies of the Colonies uniform and won't be moving in with her. Marie curtly says, "I see" then says she has no choice but to cut her out of her will. Jo says, "I figured" and Marie gets up, says goodbye, and starts shuffling toward the exit. Jo asks her why she's rushing off, and Marie looks at her in surprise and repeats that she's cutting her out of her will. Jo tells her that that doesn't mean they can't hang out anymore [even though the sole reason she was tolerating her shit was the promise of cash], then says she totally digs her pushy stubbornness. Marie perks up at that and invites Jo to come over on Saturday night and watch Lawrence Welk with her, and Jo pretends that that sounds like a super awesome way to spend part of her weekend. She agrees to indulge the old lady by wearing the Ladies of the Colonies beanie, and a delighted Marie says, "See you Saturday!" and gives Jo a quick hug.
Recap: Blair sweeps into the cafeteria while Jo is waxing the floor and asks if Geri is here yet - no, but ugh - and adds that they're supposed to meet for lunch. A few seconds later, Natalie and Tootie burst in...and Natalie is snarkishly accusing her of sabotaging her play. When Mrs. Garrett asks whassup, Natalie explains that she wrote a scene for drama class, which Tootie totally botched and caused the audience to laugh in all the wrong places. When Tootie angrily stomps across the room, Jo barks at her for stepping on the floor that she just waxed. Tootie just stares at her blankly, so a perplexed Jo asks if her if she heard what she just said...and Tootie nervously chuckles and makes a joke about how she wanted to leave her footprints in the wax for posterity.
Geri - ugh - enters the cafeteria and announces that she's just been hired to do her comedy schtick at the new Howard Johnson's. Yeesh. They must really be hard up for entertainment. Natalie asks Geri if she would please help critique the scene that Tootie flubbed earlier...and then she and Tootie take their positions and get ready to re-act it. After Natalie delivers the opening line, Tootie just stares blankly into space, and an impatient Natalie throws up her hands and goes, "See? She doesn't pick up her cues!" Geri scrunches her face concernedly at Tootie, who's maneuvering herself so that she's standing to the right of Natalie. When she bitches at Natalie for overacting and being impossible to work with, Mrs. Garrett asks her why she's getting so upset about something that's supposed to be fun...and Tootie screeches, "I'm not going to waste my time on this junk anymore!" and storms upstairs.
Tootie flees to her bedroom with Natalie at her heels. She asks Tootie whassup with her shitty attitude, which is more obnoxious than usual. Tootie snaps about how sucky her script writing is, then accuses her of being too sensitive of criticism. Natalie reminds her that she was the one who bombed on stage with her shittastic acting, and an irked Tootie turns the radio on and blasts the volume, and insists again that her script sucked...and then two start bickering like an old married couple.
Geri enters the room, turns the music off, and breaks up their argument. She tells Tootie she's been noticing something strange about the way she's been acting, then comes right out and asks her if she's having trouble with her hearing. Tootie snaps, "Of course not!" so Geri explains that part of her disability includes hearing problems, and she does the same kind of stuff she's noticed her (Tootie) doing: move around to hear better, lean in close, get pissy at people when she can't hear what they're saying. Tootie admits that, yeah OK, she's been having trouble with her hearing lately...but for some nonsensical reason is refusing to see a doctor. Geri warns her not to mess around with her ear health and strongly urges her to make an appointment asap...and Tootie promises to take care of it this afternoon. Geri nods approvingly, asks her to keep her in the loop, then exits the room. A worried looking Natalie tells her they should head over to the infirmary right now and asks Tootie how long she's had symptoms. Tootie says it's been about two weeks, and Natalie's all, "Wha-a?", reminds her that she's a doctor's daughter and therefore knows how serious this type of thing can be, and says she needs to sort out whatever's wrong with her ear immediately. Tootie breezily says that something probably got caught inside her ear and figured she'd just let nature take its course and wait for it to self-correct. What a dumb moron. She orders Natalie not to tell anyone about this, which is so idiotic - go to the damn doctor! - and Natalie promises to keep her secret, which is equally as idiotic. Most idiotic, however, was the writers' decision to structure an entire episode around Tootie's minor ear ailment.
Tootie is wearing headphones and bopping to the beat as she sets the tables in the cafeteria for lunch. Mrs. Garrett asks her to clean up the lounge when she's done...but, of course, Tootie can't hear her [or see her, apparently] and continues to boogie. Mrs. Garrett stands in front of her and waves her arms to get her attention, and when Tootie takes off her headphones she asks her to explain why she's been acting so squirrelly lately. Further to that, she's been hearing from her English and French teachers that she hasn't been performing well in class lately - to which Tootie shrugs and breezily retorts, "It's just a phase." Jo asks Tootie if she wants to clear the tables tonight, and Tootie mishears her and replies, "No, it's raining" and Natalie's like, "Ack!", then keeps alive the illusion that everything's A-OK by joking about how Tootie never likes to clear the tables when it rains. Blair asks Tootie if she needs help with French...and when Tootie doesn't answer 'cause she didn't hear the question, a bemused Blair repeats, "Are you having trouble?" Tootie stares back at her in horror, worried that Blair just discovered her secret - but then Natalie swoops over and quips that Tootie is doing so well in French that she barely understands English anymore...and then she and Tootie both squeeze out a forced laugh. Blair's like, "OK, whatever" and continues to go about her business 'cause I doubt she could give much of a rat's ass about whatever dumb thing is going on with these two.
Geri tells the Facts gals that her unfunny comedy schtick at the Howard Johnson's didn't cut it, evidenced by the zero laughter she got from the audience. Shocker. She then stares expectantly at Tootie, who suddenly announces that she has to go to the library right now and rushes out. Geri asks Natalie if Tootie got her ear checked out by a doctor yet, and Natalie says no, but that she's feeling a lot better.
Tootie bursts back into the cafeteria shrieking in pain. Apparently, Roy (the curly-haired dork who likes to hit on Jo) struck her with his bicycle. [That shouldn't have made me laugh out loud, but it did.] A distraught Roy anxiously tells everyone that he saw Tootie ambling along the street and rang his bell to alert her - and when she didn't stop, he plowed right into her. An alarmed Natalie loudly declares, "She didn't hear him coming" then marches over to Mrs. Garrett to spill the beans about Tootie's ear situation, despite Tootie's anxious protests. Mrs. Garrett glares at Tootie and asks, "Is this true?" and Tootie sheepishly admits that lately her ears have been "clogged". Natalie tattles on Tootie for making her promise not to tell anyone...and then Geri piles on and says that Tootie promised to go see a doctor but never did. Mrs. Garrett's like, "Enough of this fuckery" and announces that she's calling the doctor right now, and bustles toward the phone. Tootie glares hatefully at Natalie, calls her a traitor, and vows to never forgive her for ratting out her ear problem.
Geri follows Tootie upstairs and asks her why she refused to go to the doctor, and Tootie says she's afraid that the doctor will tell her she's going deaf and make her wear a hearing aid. She then scrunches her face in misery and wails, "Everything is supposed to be perfect! I don't want to be handicapped!" and Geri stares at her, stupefied that she'd actually say such a dickish thing to someone with cerebral palsy, and despondently hangs her head. Tootie, who suddenly realizes she just put her foot in her mouth, apologizes, then begs Geri not to hate her for her insensitivity...which she's clearly not all that sorry for, 'cause in the next breath she insists that she couldn't stand to be handicapped. She cries, "It's not fairrrrrrrr!" and Geri tells the nitwit that life may not be perfect - and when bad things happen, it's what you do about them that counts. Mrs. Garrett pokes her head into the room and says that the doctor is available now, and Tootie agrees to keep the appointment...then sheepishly asks Geri to come with her.
Natalie worries that Tootie will continue to hold a grudge against her forever - but Jo just rolls her eyes and assures her she'll get over it. A few seconds later, Tootie returns with Mrs. Garrett and Geri and happily announces that she's going to be OK. Phew! She explains that some fluid got trapped in her ear, which subsequently got infected...and so the doctor just drained it. Jo acts overly fascinated with the details of the procedure and asks to hear more, while Blair makes a face and calls it disgusting. Tootie then ambles over to where Natalie is standing and sheepishly tells her that if she had waited much longer to see a doctor, she might have had permanent hearing damage. Tootie traces her ear problem to the time she went outside with a wet head and then got a cold. Natalie smugly retorts, "I told you so!" and starts railing to the gals about how important it is for them to listen to her whenever she warns them against going into the cold without a warm hat on.
Recap: Natalie grumbles about how badly she wants to write a substantive article in the school paper, and that it would be a departure from the fluffy drivel she usually churns out. [The writers must have plum forgotten a couple of things: just two episodes ago, Natalie went out on a limb publishing a story in the school paper about her anti-book banning activism - a show of balls that got her terminated as school paper editor.] That said, let us digress..
Natalie announces her intention to tackle an important societal issue, and the other Facts girls rack their tiny brains trying to guess what it could be - drugs, cheating, venereal disease (!) - but Natalie says it's none of those and proudly announces that her article will be about abortion. Gasp! Faint! Swoon! Mrs. Garrett makes a blech face and says it's a tough subject for a high school newspaper, and Blair agrees that it can get pretty touchy. Natalie says she'd really like to "stir things up", then complains that it's a moot point 'cause no one at Eastland will talk to her on the record about their abortions. Mrs. Garrett breezily assures her she'll come up with something else, and then she, Jo, and Blair escape the uncomfortable abortion talk by making a break for it to the kitchen. Natalie tells Tootie she's called every clinic and doctor's office in the area, but none were willing to give her a list of Eastland students who had undergone an abortion...so all she has for her article are boring statistics. She insists that she needs a "POV" (personal point of view) on the issue, and Tootie decides that this is the perfect opening to tell her about Louise, the imaginary friend she used to have in lieu of actual friends who were probably turned off by her sharp-tongued sass. As she reminisces about how Louise was anything she wanted her to be, Natalie looks like she's just stumbled upon a brilliant idea and says she'll write her abortion story from Louise's perspective! She explains that "Louise" can be a composite of all the statistics and background information she's been gathering - but Tootie gets all judgey and exclaims, "You can't do that!" Natalie says it's done all the time...except in this case she has zero intention of disclosing that "Louise" doesn't exist, 'cause it might take away from the story's impact. Tootie tells her that that's dishonest, but Natalie just shrugs unconcernedly, says she's doing it anyway...and that if she doesn't like it, she and her sassy tongue can suck on it.
Natalie publishes her abortion story, and all the Eastland students are gathered in the cafeteria, reading the paper and gabbling excitedly about the article. Jo tells Natalie, "This is powerful stuff" and Blair is impressed with her strong and sensitive writing style...while Tootie scowls disapprovingly in Natalie's direction. Blair says she feels like she knows the girl who had the abortion and wonders who it is, and Natalie says she can't say 'cause it would be a violation of her journalistic ethics...and Jo agrees that it's imperative she protect her source, even if it means going to jail...or being expelled (oops: spoiler). Blair begs her to give her a little hint who this girl is, e.g. her name, and Natalie says she really can't, and Tootie bitchily snaps, "You can say that again." Jo tells Natalie that the article is so darn good that she should enter it in the annual Journalism Contest, and Natalie says she definitely likes the sound of that idea.
Mrs. Garrett bustles into the cafeteria and moans, "Ooooh, it's happening again!" Blair asks her if she read Natalie's article in the school paper, aka "the bombshell", and Mrs. Garrett wryly replies, "You're telling me." She tells the gals that Mr. Parker is on his way over, and informs Natalie that they have a problem. She then stares into space and bitches about how Mr. Parker always makes her deliver bad new, then tells Natalie he's demanding to know the identity of the girl she wrote about in her abortion article. She has twenty-four hours to rat her out...and if she refuses, she'll be expelled. Natalie pales and is all, "Wuh?" and then Mrs. Garrett and the Facts gals stare concernedly into space while the scene fades to black for a commercial break.
Natalie refuses to give up her faux abortion source, and Mr. Parker says he respects the right of a journalist to protect her source - except when it results in his office getting flooded with calls from concerned parents who are demanding to know if their daughter is the slutty culprit. You'd think Mr. Parker would have learned his lesson on the dangers of immediately caving into parental pressure from last season's ridiculous book banning episode. Natalie assures him that "Louise" is A-OK after her abortion, but Mr. Parker says he can't let her be the final judge of what's best for this girl, 'cause somehow that's his job. He then tells her that if she continues to refuse to tattle on the tramp, she'll be suspended for as long as it takes to smoke her out. Natalie says she'll never give up her source...and as Mr. Parker struts off, Mrs. Garrett promises to try to talk sense into the moron. The other Facts gals rally around Natalie and insist that the threat of expulsion is an infringement of her First Amendment rights, and then Jo babbles some nonsense about the case going as high as the Supreme Court...'cause, yeah, Mr. Parker's authoritarian dickery is definitely something that requires the highest court in the land to sort out. Blair says her mom used to date a judge, so she's going to get on the horn with him to see if there's anything he can recommend. After everyone dashes off, Tootie tells Natalie that this crisis is getting out of hand and that she needs to 'fess up to Mr. Parker...but Natalie is reluctant, 'cause then everyone will know she made the whole thing up.
Natalie's in the bedroom, packing her stuff as Tootie tries to convince her to change her mind. A frumpy student we've never seen before, Annie, enters the room to congratulate Natalie on her article...and Tootie's so disgusted by the flattery that she bitchily storms out like the judgemental little troll she is. Annie gabbles on and on about how well the abortion article was written, and how noble it is for Natalie to take a stand against revealing her source...but Natalie just grumbles about not wanting to have to tell her parents that she's been kicked out of school. Annie tells her she can't let herself crumble, then solemnly adds, "I'm counting on you" ... and when Natalie's all, "Huh??", Annie tells her the jig is up, and that she doesn't have to pretend anymore. When it's clear that Natalie is genuinely clueless about what the hell is going on, Annie needlessly confesses that the girl she described in the article is her, and that she came to this conclusion 'cause the article mentioned stuff that no one else knew about. Natalie assures her that no one at school knows about her abortion, and also that she has no desire to make trouble for her. Annie tells her she was upset when the article came out...but after reading it, she was comforted when she realized that someone out there understood exactly what she had gone through. She begs Natalie not to rat her out (despite needlessly ratting herself out), then dashes out of the room. What a self-sabotaging dimwit.
Blair's newest brilllllliant idea is for Natalie to tell her who "Louise" is, and she'll then anonymously leak it to Mr. Parker. I think that that is a truly nonsensical and dickish idea, a sentiment with which Jo also agrees.
Mrs. Garrett tells Natalie that Mr. Parker "just won't budge" on the expulsion issue and insists on knowing the girl's name. Natalie finally cracks and tells her there was no girl, and that Louise is a figment of her (well...Tootie's) imagination. Mrs. Garrett shrieks, "Wha-at??!!" so Natalie explains that since she couldn't get anyone to talk about their abortions, she made up a girl so that all of her research and statistics wouldn't go to waste. Mrs. Garrett bellows, "That's not reporting - that's fiction!!" and chides her for causing so much worry and concern for no reason...then says she's now going to have to explain her fiction writing to Mr. Parker. Natalie's like, "Uh, turns out there actually is a Louise" and tells her that she just spoke with a student who, for some God-only-knows-why reason, admitted that she went through exactly what the article described. Natalie remarks that, in an interesting twist of irony, Mr. Parker is hounding her for a name...and now she has one that could get her off the hook. Mrs. Garrett admonishes her for writing something she knew wasn't true, and says the fact that there's a real Louise at Eastland doesn't mean she was doing the right thing.
Mr. Parker enters the cafeteria to tell Natalie he's totally reversing himself on his threat to expel her. He was hoping she'd cooperate, but he can see that it's a matter of principle for her - plus, his wife ordered him to respect his students' First Amendment rights or else give up access to her cootch for the foreseeable future. He says he'll just have to figure out who "Louise" is on his own by interrogating students and poring over their absentee records...'cause, yeah, that's not an abusive violation of these teenage girls' privacy about a matter that's absolutely none of his fucking business. [Incidentally, I wonder what his ball-busting wife would have to say 'bout that.] Natalie looks stricken and finally admits to him that there is no Louise and that she's willing to print a full retraction. Mr. Parker's all, "Wha-a?!", and bitchily orders her to resign as editor-in-chief, effective immediately. He says, on the bright side, it'll be a relief to all the pain-in-the-ass parents who have been calling his office all day...then pretends as though he suspected all along that the story was made up, 'cause no way would any of his sainted Eastland girls ever hit the sack (unprotected or otherwise) and get herself knocked up. As he blissfully scampers off, Mrs. Garrett and Natalie stare solemnly at each other, then into space as they ponder the dimwittedness of their school's headmaster.