We begin this week's highly intellectual discussions with the question that EVeryone in America (all four of you) has been wondering since Episode 1: what about this tepid romance between Liz and Davis? Well, Liz makes it clear that, although she has feelings for Davis, she's still loyal to her boyfriend in Spudsville, ID. So loyal, in fact, that they've broken up and gotten back together five times. Davis says she's got to get the heck out of Spudsville and learn more about Life In The Big City. He makes a note to hook up with her look her up later when he becomes President.
So we visit Spudsville and see Liz' audition tape. She sings all the activities she's been part of, to the tune of "The Twelve Days Of Christmas." Obviously, she meant to send that to "Fire Me Please." She loves theater, but knew math was better to fall back on. Her friends call her a dork. In one shot, she's playing piano naked! Oh, no, she has a strapless evening gown on.
The Scholar Wanna-Bees bundle up (what, someone moved their house to Seattle?) and file into the Hall of Shame on USC. They are all saying, "OMG, there are only two spots left in the finals!" The Admissions Triumvirate looks on (motto: "We Love To Make You Squirm And It Shows").
Irrelevant Host Who I'm Tired Of Making Jokes About introduces this week's Captain's Mess Quiz which is really is a mess, but one any 6th grader shouldn't have too much trouble with. The students have to assemble a map of the United States from wooden pieces on loan from Fisher-Price. Oh, but a few states are MISSING on purpose! Or they seceded.
As they start assembling, the music in the background sounds like what used to be played during "Professor Kool's Fun Skool" (a local show when I was young) when the kids were drawing something. After five arduous minutes, Davis rings in first.
But wait! He's holding South Carolina in his hand. Dare he try to slip it in while Irrelevant Host, the Triumvirate, and a bunch of cameras are watching? He wimps out. Lizzie rings in second, then starts laughing. She forgot Utah, which only borders her home state! It's on the floor.
Turns out NO ONE finished correctly. As punishment, they will all have to watch 24 hours of "Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego?" reruns. (Not shown: Monsty and Bebo's unborn babies got them all right.) So Davis and Liz are the captains this week.
You know, with these Captain's Challenges, it's too bad that you can't play them like some contestants do on "The Price Is Right," betting one dollar when they think everyone else has overbid. You could just hit your time button immediately and not answer any questions. Hey, it'd eliminate the guessing penalty.
So it's Davis' Gold Team vs. Liz' Red Team. How ironic. Davis offers Liz a job as his press secretary when he becomes President. She'd rather become his VP, so no one will know of their trysts.
We visit Memphis and see Davis' collection of political buttons, as well as a Kerry/Edwards bumper sticker. Why on earth did they blur out the Kerry website, like we don't know what it is? We also learn that Davis is big into theater. He practices it well when winning some card game and reacting like he just won Game 7 of the World Series. He reiterates that he's confident, not cocky. (Pssst. Remember Episode 1, dood?)
As the Hormone-Laden Ten walk into Yet Another USC Building, one says, "Where are we going?" Yeah, and why are you in that handbasket? Well, they're going to....make movies!
Each team will have to write, shoot each other, and edit a two-minute movie. (NOT film, people. No film is being used here. It's all tape.) Then their shorts movies will have to be shown to students and faculty who have nothing better to do, and Dan Aykroyd (circa 1977) will pick the winner. Each member of the winning team will get a 20-day trip to Europe. (Speaking of producers, WHY do they have to cut away to a 2.5-second confessional about how cool the trip would be, when a simple voiceover would have done just fine?)
Gym class time! Davis chooses Melissa, Max, Alyssa, and Gerald for the Gold Team. Liz takes Jeremy, Milana, Scot, and Amari for the Red Team. Amari, predictably, is bummed.
They have to choose from one of three quotes on which to base their films:
1. "To be or not to be, that is the question." -Shakespeare 2. "You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation." -Plato 3. "Hey bud . . . let's party!" -Fast Times at Ridgemont High
Aykroyd tells them that the key to Bad Student Movies is a good script. So off they go.
Gold decides on the Plato quote. Davis says it deals more with resolution than conflict. Alyssa pouts. She is pissed that he didn't like her idea of the Shakespeare quote. She should have been on the Red Team, which chose it because it would be easier to write to. (Excuse me. People have written doctoral theses on that quote, and you're going to try to take care of it in two minutes?!)
The image that says it all for the Gold Team is Davis sitting in a van expounding on his idea of telling what amounts to Liz's story through their movie. And all the while, Alyssa pouts. She's staring out the van window. It's one thing for Alyssa to be upset that her idea was rejected, but she's offering nothing constructive in response! (She'll say - all together now - "It was the editing.")
They shoot. And miss. Red is working well together. Amari sets aside her initial bad feeings (take note, Alyssa!) to come up with the idea of Liz being some sort of superhero in a comedy setting. (Who do you think you are, Harold Hecuba on "Gilligan's Island"? Gang, the quote deals with a guy wanting to commit suicide!)