Recap: Tootie is teaching the other Facts gals [while George Clooney, who I guess has nothing better to do, observes] how to log their sales into the store's fancy new 32-bit microprocessing computer...and their eyes start to glaze over when she recites the different codes for the various inventory items. Mrs. Garrett spacily wanders in and shrieks about all the confusing Russian literature she's been studying for her upcoming college midterm, then spacily wanders back out - just as Andy Moffett bursts into the store and informs the Facts gals that Teen Scene magazine is hosting a big contest for female singers who will vie for the grand prize of singing backup for El DeBarge. LOL. The gals are all blech and come right out and tell him how disinterested they are in the prospect of singing backup for a soon-to-be washout, then asks him why he cares so much about this. Andy gets a dreamy look on his face and says he's a HUGE El DeBarge fan and is under the illusion that if he gets to meet the musician, they'll immediately hit it off, hang out, and become lifelong friends. Despite the glaring age gap between them. As the Facts gals chuckle at their young friend's earnestness, Tootie says she's been there...and by there she means the total horse's ass she made of herself when she was obsessed with Jermaine Jackson and snuck into his dressing room after a concert in Season 3. (LOL...that was a damn hilarious episode.) She points out that even though they met, they never became friends or started hanging out. Jo explains to Andy that they're past the age of wanting to waste their time gushing over celebrities, and Natalie concurs and says that even a halfwit like Tootie finally grew up and quit whatever fan clubs she had enrolled herself in.
As the Facts gals work on the store's inventory of crap, Blair demonstrates a newly developed flair for memorizing the coding system. Mrs. Garrett shuffles downstairs again to shriek about how tortured she continues to be about her upcoming midterm, so the gals urge her to hang in there and cheer, "Ed-na! Ed-na! Ed-na!" before she heads back upstairs to re-immerse herself in Dostoevsky.
Andy excitedly informs the Facts gals that they made it to the semi-finals of the El DeBarge contest, and they're all, "Wuh?" and remark on how surprising that is, given that none of them recalls entering. Andy explains that he took it upon himself to write an essay on their behalf in fluorescent lipstick on one of El DeBarge's albums, then had it hand delivered to the contest coordinator by an exotic dancer. As Jo and Blair stare bewilderedly into space, Tootie says she admires his initiative and kinda likes the idea of unwittingly having made it into the semi-finals of an El DeBarge backup singer contest. Andy says that the next step will be to make a demo tape...and as the gals mull that over, they start to look into the idea of rubbing elbows with the '80s superstar.
The Facts gals (plus Andy and George) put their heads together to come up with the perfect song for the demo tape. Andy suggests something sexy with a lot of moaning (!), and after that awkward joke falls flat on the studio audience, Natalie starts croooning My Boyfriend's Back, and everyone gets into it and belts out the lyrics.
A few days later, Andy breezes into the store and announces to the gals that they somehow stumbled into the finals...and everyone woots and giddily jumps up and down at the implausible development. Mrs. Garrett ambles into the store at that moment and assumes that all the cheering is in celebration of her Russian literature midterm finally being over.
The Facts gals arrive at the recording studio with Andy filming their grand entrance for some kind of behind-the-scenes footage he's cobbling together. George Clooney scopes out the competition and tells the gals that apart from a talented looking Motown group from Detroit that calls itself Commotion, the other bands are pretty lightweight...and he says this as though he's not looking at the lightweightest impromptu band in the history of '80s sitcoms. Natalie and Tootie decide that it's refreshing to be wholesome - until they see a trio of prim girls decked out in sweater vests and bowties, prompting Natalie to wryly acknowledge, "Well, wholesome's taken." The lead Commotion singer asks Tootie and Natalie if there's a cigarette machine anywhere and says she's asking them 'cause she assumes they work at the studio...then laughs hysterically when the two inform her that they're here to audition.
Barry Egan introduces himself to the Facts gals as the Teen Scene contest coordinator and fake modestly informs them that he's somewhat of a legend in the DJ universe. As part of the interview portion of the contest, he asks the four why they want to sing with El DeBarge...and as Jo, Blair, and Natalie just stare blankly into space while they ponder the grand prize, Tootie jumps in and natters about how music is a common language that brings people together.
Later, Barry narrows the contestants to three finalists, including the band Sexy Lingerie...and as Andy squeals excitedly, he explains to the confused Facts gals that he named their band Sexy Lingerie [and somehow didn't think it was relevant to tell them this detail before now]. They tell him they're humiliated by the misogyny, yet thrilled to be finalists...and Barry informs all of the finalists that the next step will be to lay down a track in the recording studio so that El DeBarge can sweep in and choose which performance is most to his liking.
After the Facts gals perform ridiculously horribly (off camera, fortunately...or unfortunately, depending on how entertaining viewers may have found that type of spectacle), Barry makes a sudden, implausible announcement that one of the bands just broke up due to artistic differences. This means that Commotion is now the gals' only remaining competition.
In the next scene, El DeBarge saunters into the recording studio with his entourage and fan-poof-tastic '80s 'do and bumps into Natalie, who blushes at finding herself in the artist's presence. She introduces herself...and a few seconds later, a gushy looking Tootie rushes over and gigglingly shakes his hand. The lead singer from Commotion sashays over and shamelessly flirts with El, who remarks in the flat kind of way that musicians who have zero acting ability but somehow find themselves guest starring as themselves on TV shows deliver their lines with that he remembers seeing her perform at a club in Detroit. Barry's all, "Wuh?", reminds the scammer that this contest is strictly for amateurs, and promptly disqualifies Commotion, which means that Sexy Lingerie has won by default...an outcome that speaks to the general lameness of the contest.
The Facts gals assemble themselves around a large mic and lightly jig as they croon chorus noises while El DeBarge sings You Wear it Well with Andy filming the performance.
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2/10/2021 07:13:43 am
Another awesome episode. How 80's did Natalie and El look at the time. So cool.
2/10/2021 12:45:31 pm
This is one of my top two favorite episodes of the series! The other being "3,2,1..." that airs few episodes later.
3/10/2021 12:14:45 pm
I see that the Truck Stop recap is ready to read. I am NOT going to read it yet. I will wait until the next recap is ready to read. THEN I will slowly read the Truck Stop.....
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Snide recaps of television's most entertaining classics