Recap: Mrs. Garrett is excitedly bustling around the residence part of Edna's Edibles, delighted that the Facts gals are back from their summer vacays so the five of them can begin slogging it through Season 6 of a show that, IMHO, the writers should have called it quits with after the Season 4 finale. As Natalie gabbles about how annoyed she is with her school schedule and Tootie insists on wanting henceforth to be referred to as Dorothy, Jo wearily shakes her head and remarks on how predictable they all are, griping about the same stupid things at the beginning of every season. Tootie argues that they're not so much predictable as they are steady and reliable...and Natalie says, on the contrary, she has a funny tidbit that shows how out of character Tootie acted just a few weeks ago. This segue ways into a fake flashback of Natalie's/Tootie's summer vacation at a Cape Cod resort.
Natalie goes looking for Tootie and finds her decked out in a busty red dress with her hair in a sophisticated upswept 'do as she chats with an older man named Bill Simpson. When Natalie stares at her in shocked incredulity, a startled looking Tootie introduces her to Bill as "my young friend Natalie Green". Natalie pulls Tootie aside and demands to know whassup, so Tootie explains that Bill is the casting director for a local playhouse and that she got all dolled up to show him as a means of showing off her extensive acting range. Bill overhears that last part and says he's looking to cast the role with an innocent looking teenager, which means he won't consider anyone who looks remotely glamorous.
Blair and Jo cluck sympathetically at Tootie for not landing the playhouse role, while Natalie smugly says that - unlike Tootie - she knows how to cope with life's mishaps in a far more mature way. Tootie chuckles, says, "Seymour", then explains who Seymour is.
Back to Cape Cod..
Natalie is being trailed and harassed by a pre-pubescent chubbo named Seymour. When she snappishly tells him to get lost, he responds by pinching her and pulling out a chair as she's about to sit on. She angrily threatens to strangle him, and chases him around the room as he gleefully scampers out of reach.
Back to present day..
Tootie chortles as she murmurs, "So much for maturity", and Mrs. Garrett tells Natalie that clearly Seymour had a huge crush on her. Jo's like, "Speaking of crushes.." and tells the Facts gals that when she and Mrs. Garrett spent a weekend together in Atlantic City last summer, she gained new respect for her as a woman. When the Facts gals look intrigued at the cryptic pronouncement, Jo eagerly starts spilling the beans.
Fake Atlantic City flashback..
While out at a ritzy restaurant for dinner, Mrs. Garrett tells Jo she wonders if the cute piano player [aka Gomez from The Addams Family] takes requests, then ambles over to him clutching a dollar bill. When she asks Gomez if he knows how to play Where or When, he flashes her a flirty grin, refuses to accept her money, and begins to play the requested song. After a brief time jump, Mrs. Garrett, along with the entire restaurant crowd, is singing along to Gomez's piano playing. After the song, she thanks him and breathlessly says, "It's been magic" ... to which Gomez coquettishly retorts, "The magic is you." Mrs. Garrett blushingly sashays back to where Jo is sitting, then tells her she's off to primp in the ladies room. Gomez watches her exit and decides that he too needs a restroom break - mmm hmm - and when the camera pans back to present day, Jo titteringly tells the Facts gals that Mrs. Garrett never returned to the lounge.
Mrs. Garrett informs the Facts gals that she did, in fact, return to the lounge - but that Jo didn't notice 'cause she was otherwise engaged.
Back to the fake Atlantic City flashback..
Jo is sitting at the piano, belting out Feelings [in what I would generously describe as a barely subpar singing voice] while the captivated restaurant crowd is gathered round. When an awestruck looking young man asks her how in blazes she learned to perform like that, she tells the story of how her mom used to take her to the bar she worked at, where the resident piano man taught her everything he knows. She then starts playing/singing It Had To Be You...and the crowd sways along with the melody.
Back to present day..
Blair steers the discussion to what she did over the summer...and to everyone's surprise, she didn't spend the last two months shopping in London and Paris. She tells everyone she went to Iowa to spend time with Cliff and his parents, who live on a farm of the e-i-e-i-o variety.
Fake Iowa farm flashback..
When Cliff’s dad threw out his back lifting Blair's makeup bag, everyone was asked to pitch in with the farm work. Blair tells Cliff that, completely implausible as it may be, the only outfit she packed for the Iowa trip was a poofy pink, Little House on the Prairie-esque frock...and also makes it clear she's less than thrilled to be expected to help out with anything resembling manual labor. Cliff asks her if she'd prefer to take the first train out of Hicksville to somewhere she can be suitably pampered, and she reluctantly declines and says she'll do her best to pretend to be a good sport. She agrees to milk a cow, then seats herself on a little stool, gently squeezes a teat, and immediately gives up on the task when nothing comes out. Cliff suggests she move away from the cow and instead help him slop the pigs, and Blair somehow decides it'd be more efficient to hand feed them corn cobs...and in the process trips and lands ass backwards into a muddy patch of pig shit. Cliff anxiously asks her if she's OK, and she responds by laughing hysterically at the pig-shitted mess she and her frothy pink dress are helplessly sitting in.
Back to present day..
Blair tells the Facts gals she sprained her ankle when she fell in the pig shit, and therefore got to spent the rest of her Iowa visit lounging on the porch with Cliff's dad. When Jo expresses doubt that she was actually involved in the slopping of pigs, Blair provides photographic proof. Jo studies the photos and deadpans about how she can't tell which is the pig and which is Blair...then jokes that she's not so much ridiculing Blair as insulting the pig.
Thanks for reading! If you are enjoying TVofYore's recaps, consider thanking me by buying me a "coffee"!
1/1/2020 09:07:36 am
Happy New Year Isabella
1/1/2020 10:12:19 am
12/3/2020 11:30:24 am
As much as Jo was my favorite character on the show, I really don't like how they basically de-badassed her in season 6. New hairstyle, new personality, she felt almost like a more down to earth version of Blair.
Leave a Reply.
The Facts of Life homepage
Recapper: Isabel K. French
Your contributions help keep the site ad-free
Television of Yore
Snide recaps of television's most entertaining classics