Well this episode has the literary plot reference right in the title!
So, yeah. Turner tells the class about the plot of Cyrano de Bergerac. Topanga thinks it’s super romantic, but the boys in class think Cyrano’s a “dip” for doing all this work just to get his friend the girl. Turner thinks this is very interesting, and wonders what it really says about the gender barrier. Cory suggests it means that women like dips, but Turner says it means that men have a hard time understanding what women find romantic. Preach, Turner, preach.
Alan bought a trash compactor for Amy for their anniversary. Feeny thinks Alan’s making a mistake, but doesn’t expressly say so. Amy is not enthusiastic when she opens the present. Alan doesn’t understand, because Amy had been saying for years that she wanted a trash compactor. He got her exactly what she wanted, what’s the problem? Yes, here is a tip – never get your special lady-friend an appliance as a gift, unless it’s a very special appliance and you also got her something really special. Like, you could give your wife a toaster for Christmas as long as you made sure to get her jewelry or whatever, and as long as the last toaster you had was broken. I still wouldn’t recommend giving anyone you’re romantically involved with a toaster for a major gift-giving occasion, though.
Harley is in an argument with his girlfriend, who we’ve never seen before and will never see after this episode, and who talks like she should be in some 50s or 60s teen movie where the two gangs have a death race through a canyon or something – which is fitting, because Harley looks and sounds like he’s a 50s Greaser anyway. Joey tries to calm the couple down, and Harley notices that Frankie is unusually subdued.
Cory and Shawn walk into the hall, saying the cafeteria cooks made the macaroni and cheese out of Harley’s leftover hair grease, forgetting that Harley and company are almost always in that part of the hallway. So Harley hears them, threatens them, they apologize, and somehow Shawn charms Harley’s girlfriend, who is named Gloria, which I will remember because she looks and sounds like a Gloria. Gloria tells Harley to go easy on the kids, so Harley sends Frankie to take care of them.
They teleport into the cafeteria, and Frankie tells the boys they have two options: 1) they die, 2) they do Frankie a favor. Frankie is in love.
Frankie wants help wooing the object of his affection. Cory doesn’t think they’re the right guys to help anyone woo anyone, and suggests he ask Harley instead; Shawn doesn’t understand the word “woo” and asks “What??” every time someone says it.
At the house, Alan tells Amy about the useful things he’s done – helped Morgan clean her room, cleaned out the gutters, now he’s taking out the trash. Amy doesn’t say anything and just chops a head of lettuce in half in response. I know a trash compactor isn’t the best anniversary gift, but I think Amy’s being a bit immature here. I mean… just tell him he screwed up, how he screwed up, tell him not to do this kind of thing again, and let him know how he can make up for it. The end. And notice we never find out what Amy got Alan for their anniversary.
Alan goes into the backyard with the trash, and Feeny, who spends approximately 10 minutes each week actually inside his house, asks why he isn’t just using the trash compactor. Alan explains he hasn’t gotten around to installing it yet, and that Amy’s pretty unenthused with the gift. Alan still doesn’t understand, because his wife is too passive aggressive to explain, so Feeny explains instead. Feeny says that yeah, Amy asked for the trash compactor, so Alan got it – a no-brainer. He didn’t have to sit around, agonizing, thinking hard about what he loves about Amy, what she loves, and so on. And now Alan gets it.
In the front of the house, Cory and Shawn arrive with Frankie Stechino.
They ask Frankie if he’s ever tried talking to this girl he likes. He has not. So they roleplay, and pretend a pillow is the girl. Shawn stands behind Frankie and suggests him stuff to say to the pillow. Shawn tells him he’s got it down, but Frankie fears he can’t talk to this girl alone. Cory points out that it’ll be pretty odd-looking if Frankie always just has two guys standing around him when he’s trying to woo this girl – although Harley pretty much always has two guys randomly around him and no one says anything. Cory says “What’re you gonna do, put us in your locker?
The girl arrives in front of Frankie’s locker. We can see that it’s Harley’s girlfriend Gloria, and Cory, who obviously cannot see her, says she sounds familiar. Shawn tells Frankie the things to say to the girl – which is sort of what happens in Cyrano de Bergerac, except Shawn isn’t in love with Gloria – and Frankie repeats them, albeit with some minor mistakes (Shawn says “I came here to say”, Franie says “I came here today”). Frankie then gets on a roll and starts speaking from his heart, finally asking her if she’s a burger. She does. Cory then realizes where he’s heard the girl’s voice before – it’s Gloria, Harley Keiner’s girlfriend!
Shawn and Cory hop out of the locker, and confirm that it is indeed Gloria. They start freaking out, Shawn more than Cory, because, well, Harley will probably kill them if he finds out what happened. Shawn suggests they dress up as girls, pretend they’re their out-of-town cousins, and say they haven’t seen themselves. Harley spots them, and wonders what they’re doing here, because he told Frankie to “dispose of them”. They tell him that Frankie did, and now they’re angels of themselves, and now they have to float away. Harley, for no reason, asks if they’ve seen his girlfriend, and Cory tells him no, with Shawn adding that they were in the locker the whole time. Leading Harley to ask – the whole time what? And Harley chases the boys as they “float” into the bathroom, because a small room with only one door is a good place to hide from someone.
Gloria and Frankie are at Chubbie’s. Harley is speechless and confused. He feels helpless, vulnerable. He’s going to have to kill someone. He drags Cory and Shawn over to the table and demands an explanation. Frankie is very… frank. “I went behind your back and stole your girl.” Harley wonders how Gloria could do such a thing. Gloria like the attention Frankie gives her, and says Harley never gets her anything or does anything to show he cares. Harley tells her if he spent time caring about her, who’d care about him?
Cory stops them, saying all couples go through stuff like this. Even his parents! Harley calls Alan a yutz when he hears about Alan’s gift of a trash compactor. Gloria doesn’t think that’s any worse than the tires – the three tires – Harley gave her once, but Harley ignores her and asks for further information. Cory says his parents always make up, and when Harley asks how, Cory says he doesn’t know, they just do. Harley looks around and then exits Chubbie’s, leaving the other four to just stand around while a musical sting So Harley went to the Matthews home, to ask for advice from Amy. He says he’d go to his own mother for advice, but “it’s four in the afternoon, so… she’s out cold.” Amy isn’t so sure, but Harley says he has no one else to go to.
Eric spots Harley from outside the window and runs in to save his mom. Amy is perfectly fine, though, and ushers Eric upstairs while Harley continues to sip his tea. Amy suggests that perhaps Gloria feels unappreciated, and when Harley wonders how he’s supposed to know what Gloria wants, Amy says he should know because he’s her boyfriend. There’s a back and forth about feelings and love and stuff, and then Alan comes in and contributes something about how if you care about someone you… know what to buy them, or something. There’s also a bit about how, sure, maybe your person knows you love them, but you still have to show it to them.
Amy asks if Harley is going to go and talk to Gloria. Harley isn’t, because Amy was right – it’s time to think about what Gloria wants, and right now, Gloria wants Frankie. Harley almost steals a tea cup and Cory comes back. Also Alan bought Amy a pearl necklace – 18 pearls, one for every year they’ve been married. Amy points out they’ve only been married 17 years, and Alan says one is for the year they weren’t married. Amy says that was a good year, and they kiss. Cory asks what that’s supposed to mean a couple times, before telling the couple to get a room.
Turner praises Cory for the good work he did on his Cyrano paper. Cory explains that’s because he was Cyrano, except that he wasn’t in love with Gloria. Also he didn’t actually help do any of the wooing, he just got Harley to leave Gloria alone. When Cory asks if he can maybe have some extra credit for this, Turner says no, but asks him what he learned.
Cory: Love is something you can never take for granted, so if you find someone you really, really care about, never buy her tires or major appliances.
Turner praises Cory for his maturity and says he’s wise beyond his year. Then Shawn runs in to tell Cory that the girl’s volleyball team is running laps, so Cory and Shawn run eagerly to view this spectacle. Not to be rude, but I don’t think seeing a volleyball team running laps would be exactly enticing to teenage boys. I mean, I think the implication is they want to see some bouncing boobs, but most female volleyball players aren’t exactly busty, and they would all have sports bras on anyway.
…Well, this was… an okay episode. Cory pretty much summed up what I would say the moral was, so nothing else to say here.
Shirt – 14
Dress/Skirt – 3
Scarf – 1