BMW – 307, “Truth and Consequences”; Nov 10, 1995

HEY NOVEMBER 10TH IS THE DAY I’M WRITING THIS EVEN. WHOA.

So here’s yet another episode in which we learn the value of the truth. Enjoy.

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Cory and Shawn have done a project about how the school cafeteria food is made, for their media class. Their teacher, um… I think his name is Eli, agrees with Cory and Shawn that it stinks, and tells them to redo the assignment. They were supposed to be looking for a new and exciting story. And apparently they’re going to air everyone’s videos on a public access channel in four days! Oh no!

Shawn calls Cory over later, to film something exciting for their report. Some lady in the building across from Turner’s apartment is dancing in a towel. Turner comes in and catches them, telling them that’s not appropriate to report on, and they should watch the real news to get ideas. They turn on the news, and there’s a report on breast augmentation. Once again we’ve reached a joke that is sadly still completely relate-able nearly 20 years later.

The next day at school, Cory and Shawn decide to find some scandal to film. Cory doesn’t think there’ll be anything too scandalous, right then Joey walks in carrying a bunch of tires.

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They decide to follow Joey to find a scandal, and then he reveals he’s also carrying a bunch of tube-socks to sell.

Meanwhile, Feeny’s in the process of hiring someone to replace some lady, and Eric has volunteered to participate in a dream research study – that is, a research study about dreaming – because he’s totally up for being paid to sleep. For some reason this study is being held in the school, during school hours, in what seems to be Turner’s classroom, rather than, say, the nurse’s office, or at a college.

Suddenly it’s the day they’re broadcasting the stories on their public access channel. Suddenly I wonder if I need to explain about public access tv. It definitely still exists. We have like 5 different public access stations here, at least two of which are run by the big university, and one has this hilariously awful program that’s set up like part reenactment and part interview/talk show, featuring historical persons such as Benjamin Franklin and Abraham Lincoln.

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Topanga is the news acnhor, and is very nervous. Also Cory’s parents are there in the studio to watch, and not, say, Topanga’s parents, or anyone else’s. Because… the casting budget was too low or something.

Feeny finds out Eli hasn’t even watched all of the reports they’re airing, and understandably worries this is a bad idea. The show goes well, though, with Topanga somehow getting over her anxiety and shining like a professional newsperson… not necessarily an actual tv anchor, because… well, you know.

Cory finally rushes in at the last minute with the finished tape, which is on Janitor Bud. The film has caught him leaving a little over two hours early.

Shawn:
Shawn: “Dun dun DUNNNN”

And also that Joey shows up at the time Bud is supposed to clock out, to clock out for him. For some reason the employee clocker… thing is just in the hallway and not, say, in the staff room, or Feeny’s office, or something. I’m also not exactly sure that school staff would even clock out, especially if, like Janitor Bud, there’s a specific time he’s supposed to leave. But I honestly know little about card punching and all that, since by the time I was old enough to enter the workforce, pretty much everything switched to being done totally with computers.

Cory and Shawn’s video report ends. I think their earlier piece on cafeteria food was actually the better composed of the two videos. This one it’s just like “hey look Bud skipped out early, and Joey punches in him for him!” There’s no interviews, no nothing, and it just covered something that happened on one day.

All the adults (and Topanga) don’t really know what to say, except Feeny says unfortunately he has to fire Janitor Bud now. Now, I know for a fact that you can’t be fired for leaving work early once. Sure it’s suggested that he does it frequently, but they only have proof of the one time. I think this would warrant a demerit, or suspension, or a dock in wages or something, not a termination. Plus, we’ve seen in at least one other episode that he stays in the school pretty late – in fact, he seems to live there, because he was sleeping in his office or the closet or something when Cory and Shawn accidentally set a fire in the chemistry lab, which was pretty late at night and not at 5 pm, which is when Bud is supposed to clock out.

At school the next scene, no one will talk to Shawn (who I just had the urge to call “Scott” for no apparent reason) and Cory.

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Feeny and Bud walk out of Feeny’s office/the bathroom/the guidance counselor’s office/etc. Bud is apparently just two months from retirement (no joke), but Feeny has no choice but to let him go. Again, even though he was only caught once.

Shawn feels bad, but Cory says, hey, Bud was doing something bad that he shouldn’t have been doing, and that’s not their fault. Cory does have a point. I mean, if you were a cashier at Target, and you were caught stealing potato chips from the store, even if it was just one bag, and it was just the one time, and you were about to retire, well, you still did a bad thing. I mean, that’s not the best example – stealing from your place of employment is generally worse than clocking out early, because stealing makes the company lose money, clocking out early makes you lose money (although Bud didn’t actually clock out early… this paragraph is turning into a mess, but I hope my point was sort of clear.)

Joey arrives on scene and praises Bud, calling him a hero, a giver. He asks if Cory wants to know where Bud gives, and Cory covers his face, full of remorse, until Joey reveals that Bud was “giving” to the horse races. So he’s been leaving early to go gambling.

Then Bud comes into the hallway, reveals he knows it was the two of them who revealed what he was doing, and puts “the janitor’s curse” on them.

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Back with Eric (forgot he was in this episode!), his results from the cream lab are… odd. The researcher lady asks if he can remember any of his dreams from that session, or from any time over the last few months. Eric can’t, and she asks if he’d be willing to go through some more testing. Eric agrees, but only if she takes the money he got that, halves it, then doubles it, and pays him that for the upcoming sessions.

At lunch, everyone still hates Cory and Shawn, and no one will let them sit at any table, even though there’s always an empty table when they eat lunch when no one’s mad at them. And then Turner basically says it’s Eli’s fault.

That night at the Matthews home, Amy and Alan disagree on the issue. Amy thinks Bud shouldn’t have been fired, because he was close to retirement, a pension, the school was his life, whatever, but Alan points out that leaving early when you aren’t supposed to is bad, and not only was he leaving early but he was going to the racetrack and not to, say, feed orphans or something. This kind of stuff is why I love Degrassi. Er, I mean, this isn’t Degrassi I’m watching right now, but Degrassi tends to be pretty good about bringing up both sides of an issue and not presenting anyone as being right (there are exceptions). Like in one episode, Emma is protesting genetically modified food, and argues that no one knows what eating tomatoes infused with scorpion DNA will do to people in 10 years, but the principal points out that there’s no evidence suggesting it will be harmful, and that it makes food cheaper so poorer people can actually buy fresh produce once in a while.

So, what I’m saying is, I like when shows point out both sides of an issue, and mostly leave it up to the viewers to decide what’s right.

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Eli talks to Cory. Cory says he’s sad he got Bud into trouble, but he was doing wrong. Eli is like “yeah, that’s how working in news is.”

Later, the two go to Feeny and demand they give Bud his job back. Feeny says the matter’s closed, nothing they can do, he had no choice. Eli says it’s all his fault, he should’ve screened the tapes before airing them, etc. Cory says he sees the error of investigative reporting, or something, but is interrupted by Feeny’s new secretary.

PLAID SUIT JACKET!!
PLAID SUIT JACKET!!

Janitor Secretary Bud.

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During the credits scene, the dream research is presenting Eric to a room full of sciences. Eric apparently has zero brain activity while he sleeps. This should be especially startling when you discover that brains are actually more active when they’re asleep. The scientist lady wakes Eric up, and although it’s not brought up, the brain monitor still shows zero activity.

Eric then asks how the mouse is doing – apparently the study included a mouse for comparison. The mouse’s sleep brain monitor is going crazy.

So, in this episode, I think we all learned that… um… I guess that there’s no right or wrong answer to some predicaments. Or that if you’re a teacher, you definitely need to screen your students’ projects before airing them on a local access channel.

Also Topanga quickly kissed Cory at some point and the audience went overboard with the “woooOOOOOOooooo”ing again.

On an unrelated note, the producer of Boy Meets World said he’s hoping to reveal what happened to Mr. Turner in Girl Meets World. If you don’t know already know why revealing what happened to him is exciting, don’t worry. We’ll get to that.

Also apparently they decided to cut older brother Eliot from Girl Meets World. There’s been no explanation other than “sometimes these things happen”. Certainly Cory and Topanga having a 13 year old son about 13 years after the show ended is a little… well not impossible, certainly. And it’s too bad – they didn’t even give him a chance, for one thing. I understand that maybe Disney doesn’t want yet another show with a sibling dynamic with the oldest two siblings being so close in age, but there was definitely some potential for great plotlines with their main character being only a year younger than her brother. For one thing, if they show manages to last a while, they could have had a plot where Riley’s best friend develops a crush on her brother – like how Topanga fell for Eric, but different because Riley likes whatever her best friend’s name is, whereas Cory at the time didn’t like Topanga.

Plus the kid who played Eliot was really cute, I was looking forward to seeing him grow up. And I don’t meant that to be creepy or anything considering my age.

I’m not so sure about having a show where the main character is 12 and she has a 5 or 6 year old little brother and there are no other older characters on the show. But, we’ll see how things pan out, I guess.

Danielle Fishel says he can still call her “mom”, so at the very least, we know there’s no bad blood between the two of them. I mean, sometimes actors are let go because they can’t get along with the other cast and crew, but I’d guess that wasn’t much of an issue here – Ben and Danielle don’t seem to be the types to be all “I WAS IN A POPULAR TV SHOW, LISTEN TO ME”, and the child actors don’t have enough credits to their names to be too egotistical.

Ah, well. I guess I’d rather they get rid of him before filming, instead of running out of things for him to do and then just conveniently forgetting he exists during the course of the show (see: Chuck Cunningham, Morgan Matthews during half of season 3)

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