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Least Favorite Episodes: You Take The Bad

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Here's a thread where we can nitpick our dislikes and annoyances of stuff that happened on the show.

One of mine is the episode Brian and Sylvia, the spinoff attempt in season 2 where a majority of the episode was about Tootie's Aunt/Uncle. I always skip this one.

 

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I find all those spin-offs attempts annoying. Most of all "The beginning of the end" because it robbed the show of a proper finale. I'm glad it didn't take off. I found the kids awkward and the male professor was plain disgusting (openly disrespectful of Blair's position and intelligence but hitting on her).

Though my personal peeve is  "The Ratings Game".
The writers wrote a terrible Blair in this episode. There are a few turns, and on each of them Blair is made to act more shallow than she actually is, and stupid (for example asking for help to cancel a date, while we know she is the master of dating).
It's season 8, Jo and Blair are real friends, and, spats asides, it's totally uncalled to have Jo say to the guy of the week, in quite seriousness : "That's the thing about Blair, at first she seems to have this shallow façade, but once you get to know her you realize... that's actually the deep part."

Another miss is "The Agent" where Tootie takes a comedian under her wing. The guy is not that funny. It's probably the same problem as with Geri: the show's regular jokes and sharp delivered lines are way better then the ones of the supposed comedian.

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Yes, the "Facts of Life Goes to Paris" was pretty bad.

(It apparently aired a few weeks before S4 started as a made-for-tv movie. I know this becuase it's included on the S4 DVD set, which I sadly own.)

 

My least-favorite episodes are any episodes involving Cousing Gerri.  (I thought Gerri Jewell was passable, but the show itslef tended to make these "Very Special" episodes, each with a cloying moral message.) 

 

And man, was Kim Fields terrible in the first 3 or 4 seasons; I'm glad her acting got (marginally) better over the years.

Edited by ShadowDenizen
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My least-favorite episodes are any episodes involving Cousing Gerri.  (I thought Gerri Jewell was passable, but the show itslef tended to make these "Very Special" episodes, each with a cloying moral message.)

 

Oh lord, me too! For one thing, I could scarcely understand the actress when she spoke (I know that's not her fault, of course, but it is what it is...) and for another thing, I didn't think ANY of her jokes were funny! Yet everyone, especially Mrs. Garrett, would screech like a seal whenever she said anything at all...

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One of mine is the episode Brian and Sylvia, the spinoff attempt in season 2 where a majority of the episode was about Tootie's Aunt/Uncle. I always skip this one.

 

Well, this one I kind of give a handwave to, because don't forget the era...I had actually watched the rerun with my mom, and she said that even as recently as the early '80s, a biracial couple WOULD still have been something to raise an eyebrow over, esp. depending on where the couple lived. So you have to take that into consideration.

 

Overall, I don't mind backdoor pilots; I understand that's a simple way for TPTB to try to get an existing fanbase into another one. But it just can't go over the top with being obvious, y'know? When 75% of the episode focuses on characters we've never seen before, to the detriment of the characters we actually tune in to see, that's when I get annoyed.

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I didn't really mind the one about Jo's cousin (I just saw it again a few days ago) but I can also see why it didn't fly. I know part of the reason I kind of liked it is because I'm Canadian and so are Megan Follows and Donnelly Rhodes who played, well, Jo's cousin and her father.

 

The one I absolutely cannot stand is the one with Mrs. Garrett's son Raymond and his wife Doris. Oh my God, that's a terrible episode. That's the one I always skip.

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OK, I hate to admit I ever watched this but I can think of two episodes that need mentioning as 'hated'.

 One was the one in which Tootie found herself stranded in this Manhattan greasy spoon and soon got chatted up by this teen prostitute whose pimp was pressuring her to add Tootie to the 'collection'. Anyway, it had Tootie get all huffy when she found out what her 'new friend' intended for her to become part of. Even way back then when little if anything about the realities of human trafficing was widely reported , I thought it was wrong that no one in the know (the diner waitress who gave Tootie the heads up, Tootie herself, Mrs. Garrett,etc.) considered lifting a finger to try to help the poor teen out of this nightmare  much less attempt to blow the whistle to the authorities re the pimp. They just huffily got Tootie out of there and Tootie gave the girl a 'how could you' look and that was that.

    Somewhat along those lines was the 'OutRAgeous Tootie Model' creepy one. I mean, yes, Mrs. Garrett got all righteous and fingerwagging to the photographer but not before the show  depicted Tootie in a bunch of dubious poses while the shutterbug was getting  openly inappropriately excited over this barely teen  [and, of course, nothing was done to try to help out his 'former fave' who supposedly for laughs kept lying about being 'only twelve']. I mean,  yes, Mrs. G. got to cluck and all but why were these shots actually shown and what kind of messages were these supposed to give to the audience?

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Though Tootie did look good as the teen model. At least, she wasn't whining & crying about Jermaine Jackson. That's like nails on a chalkboard. I hated when Tootie (and, Kim Fields) had to whine or cry. So annoying!

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Never saw the Brian and Sylvia episode until just now. I can't believe Richard Dean Anderson had two series. He and the woman who played Sylvia were totally mugging -- overacting, biting off every word. It was so unreal; more so when Tootie and Natalie were in the scene with them. 

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For me the pizza making (freezer burn) episode, which I think was a season premiere, marked the beginning of the end of quality. Not every episode before that was great nor was every episode from then on awful, but I just remember being really disappointed in it at the time.

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 For me Over Our Heads was the beginning of the end (Sexy Lingerie excepted).  I just caught most of the latter part of the 3 episodes that started that season.  Natalie was practically coerced into staying.  The way she was written there's no way she would have stayed in that house another 3 years.   And why were they shaking her down for the extra money to finish the store instead of Blair.   

 

 The whole store was stupid.   I missed why they decided on a novelty shop instead of rebuilding the food store which, you know, was something Mrs G actually had experience with.  There's no way  that PG-13 Spencer's Gifts was making money, much less enough to support 5 people (not that I believe Edna's Edibles was a goldmine either).  Of course the worse was yet to come with Beverly Ann, Pippa and intrigue in Australia.  

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I didn't really mind the one about Jo's cousin (I just saw it again a few days ago) but I can also see why it didn't fly. I know part of the reason I kind of liked it is because I'm Canadian and so are Megan Follows and Donnelly Rhodes who played, well, Jo's cousin and her father.

 

I love Megan Follows, so yeah, the only reason I watch that ep is to watch her be cute. The one saving grace is watching Blair chew the scenery as she razzes Jo during that call for advice. Really, that was some spectacular acting..

 

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(sigh) 

Watching the weekend marathon on LOGO. In the middle of some of my favorite episodes is this dumb bit about Tootie's aunt and uncle and their struggle to maintain marital bliss and their desire to further their separate ambitions while nurturing their mutual love and WHO GIVES A SHIT, YOU STUPID GROWNUPS? WHERE DID THE GIRLS GO? 

 

Agree with the OP, in other words.

Edited by bunnywithanaxe
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I just saw the final two episodes for the first time since their original airing, I believe.  Good lord, they were awful.  The "new students" at Eastland just did not gel the way the original series did and worse, as other posters have noted, it took away from the original cast members who - - other than Blair - - were barely shown.  In the final scene, where Jo's husband was taking the picture, Natalie wasn't even there!   Blasphemy.

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Blair was stupid to blow her entire fortune on that imo.  Was it a spinoff that didn't work?  Do we even see Jo get married?

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Maherjunkie, I think TPTB were hoping it would be picked up into a spinoff but that didn't happen.  Not sure why they would think that once TFOL had expired anyone would want to watch a retooling of the same basic premise. 

 

I think viewers got to see Jo marry Rick but I can't recall right now, it's been so long.  I always liked Flyman - - but I used to watch Young & The Restless and I loved Michael Damian.

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Yes, I remember seeing the episode where Jo had a wedding, but that one is never shown on Logo. Also never see any episodes where Snake is mentioned until the one where he and Nat sleep together. New viewers will be going "Huh? Who's he?" They'll also be thinking "Who the heck is that girl (Pippa)?

 

I mentioned this before, but I can't believe they can't just show all nine seasons in order so story lines make sense. Did they just buy the few episodes they keep showing over and over (and over)? They don't show enough of the Eastland years.

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I actually like how they handled Natalie and Snake sleeping together.  There was no pregnancy scare, Natalie didn't regret it and they didn't break up, although Natalie said she wasn't sure she was looking for marriage and a lifetime commitment.  I recall reading that Lisa Whelchel refused to participate in this episode as premarital sex went against her religious beliefs so that's why Blair is "out of town" for this epi.

 

I admire LW for sticking to her beliefs but I think the show handled the topic well.  It's not realistic (nor was it in the 80s) to have four women in their late teens/early twenties with NONE of them being sexually active.   

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Jo was out of college and working for a while before she got married.   So that puts her around 24 maybe 25 (since she is the same age as Blair who was finishing law school and thinking of opening her own firm).    Which is just about right.    Tootie was engaged when the show ended and she was probably close to finishing college.   Again, not too terrible early.   None of them got married right out of high school (well Jo did run off IN high school to get married) but it didn't happen.

 

Speaking of Blair and law school -- we never saw her stressed out.   We never saw her trying to be on Law Review or talking about it.   And why did she have to open her own law firm, if every generation of the Warners had a lawyer why is there not a Warner, Warner & Warner where she could go work?   Sorry, being a lawyer these things stick out more than they did then.

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Blair would have been in her first year of law school during the final season. She and Jo started college in the first Edna's Edibles season and there were 3 seasons of Over Our Heads. Jo would have graduated college in season 8. Was she supposed to be in some post graduate course too? The only thing I remember of her in the final season was she was working for an orphanage and only then because of that horrible Christmas Carol rip off starring Beverly Ann.

Tootie would have been a sophomore in the final season. But did she even go to college? I thought she passed on it like National so she could pursue being an actress.

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Maherjunkie, I think TPTB were hoping it would be picked up into a spinoff but that didn't happen.  Not sure why they would think that once TFOL had expired anyone would want to watch a retooling of the same basic premise.

 

Glee Season 4, anyone?  :)

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Tootie went to college.   They showed her rushing a sorority.     She was going to skip college because she thought she had a part with a touring company, but then she found out just before she had her graduation party she didn't have the part.   So off to Langley she went.  

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School didn't seem as important in the final year. All the girls (school storylines) were wish washy with the details. The best year was when Jo & Blair graduated. That's when the show should have ended. It would have been the perfect ending. Not so much for the actresses though. LOL!!!

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Never saw the Brian and Sylvia episode until just now. I can't believe Richard Dean Anderson had two series. He and the woman who played Sylvia were totally mugging -- overacting, biting off every word. It was so unreal; more so when Tootie and Natalie were in the scene with them. 

 

What made it even more unreal was the fact that nwhen the audience first sees Aunt Sylvia in their apartment, she is chatting up with an older woman named Ethel whom she identifies as her mother (and Ethel was played by Ja'net Dubois -Willona of "Good Times") . Anyway, after making a few wisecracks at her son-in-law's expense, Ethel literally laughs herself out the door just seconds before Tootie and Natalie arrive- and none of them mention Ethel having missed her granddaughter's visit or Tootie bumping into her on their way in. What kind of grandmother wouldn't hang around even for a few more seconds to see their grandkid? Just unreal.

 

edited due to  server going berserk during my first attempt to post

Edited by Blergh
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What made it even more unreal was the fact that nwhen the audience first sees Aunt Sylvia in their apartment, she is chatting up with an older woman named Ethel whom she identifies as her mother (and Ethel was played by Ja'net Dubois -Willona of "Good Times") . Anyway, after making a few wisecracks at her son-in-law's expense, Ethel literally laughs herself out the door just seconds before Tootie and Natalie arrive- and none of them mention Ethel having missed her granddaughter's visit or Tootie bumping into her on their way in. What kind of grandmother wouldn't hang around even for a few more seconds to see their grandkid? Just unreal.

 

edited due to  server going berserk during my first attempt to post

 

That makes as much sense as Blair, Jo, Natalie and Tootie wanting to live together for eight years and sharing the same bedroom.  Or needing to have Beverly Ann move in when Mrs. Garrett gets married and moves out.  By that point Blair and Jo would have been at least 21 and Natalie and Tootie over 18 so no adult necessary.

 

I also file all this in the same category I do wondering how Over Our Heads stayed in business a month.  I remember the 80s and I remember shops like that being commonplace at the mall but not in standalone locations. 

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 And in the middle of a quaint little upstate New York town, no less.  I've only seen a couple of the later years episodes in the Logo reruns, but I'd forgotten that the girls don't really care for Beverly Ann much.  It's clear they think she's a nut.  A well meaning nut, but a nut nonetheless.  Didn't she basically invite herself to movew in?  The girls clearly have no interest in her meddling in their lives.

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 And in the middle of a quaint little upstate New York town, no less.  I've only seen a couple of the later years episodes in the Logo reruns, but I'd forgotten that the girls don't really care for Beverly Ann much.  It's clear they think she's a nut.  A well meaning nut, but a nut nonetheless.  Didn't she basically invite herself to movew in?  The girls clearly have no interest in her meddling in their lives.

 

I never bought Mrs. Garrett being tired of running a bakery after the fire.  Don't know why, just didn't.  The location would have been better suited for a bookstore or clothing store, frankly, over the kitschy crap that filled Over Our Heads. 

 

I liked Cloris Leachman and didn't have a problem with Beverly Ann per se but I don't think Natalie needed her to clutch her pearls and lecture about sex when Natalie and Snake slept together.  I think Jo handled that the best when she told Natalie that her (Jo's) opinion didn't matter, it only mattered what Natalie thought herself.  But I digress.

 

I didn't mind Andy being brought onto the show and didn't even mind Beverly Ann adopting him or whatever.  But Pippa?  I don't even recall what the storyline was with her being there but it was clearly a desperate attempt to bring in younger viewers.  Fail.

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Mrs. Garrett betting tired of running the bakery/deli made no sense since hadn't it just been her dream to run one about three years before?

They really played it loose about Mrs. G's financial status. Last night I saw the episode with her never-to-be-seen-again son Alex, whom she was supporting.

Sometime in the next season she will contemplate leaving Eastland to work as a waitress because poor investments leave her broke, then the next season she does leave Eastland to run her own shop, where she paid rent to her son.

Then like two short years later she doesn't want to work full time any more so that she can go to school and travel.

Back to the waitress episode - that one really bugged me on several levels.

One, if she left the school, she would have to find a place to live, which I would think would negate any higher salary she could possibly earn as a waitress. And how could she possibly earn more working as an overnight waitress than she could at a private school as a licensed dietician?

Two, if she was working late nights/overnight, does that mean the girls were alone at night? I can't believe that Mrs. Garrett would do that. Yet we were told the girls were surprised to find out she was working a second job.

That episode just felt to me like the writers threw a bone to Charlotte Rae so that she could be the focus of an episode, rather than just her usual clucking at the girls wacky hijinks.

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Mrs. Garrett being tired of running the bakery was clearly because the writers had run out of ideas for Edna's Edibles.  I get it but what kind of new ideas did they think they would get with Over Our Heads?  Retail is retail to a degree.  Mrs. Garrett had spent her time in Paris (during one of those movie of the week things) taking cooking classes and learning new styles so again, being tired of that just doesn't ring true.  Maybe it would have made more sense to have her open a cooking school in the bakery's place.  Maybe I'm just thinking too much into this! 

 

I also disliked the waitress episode.  It made zero sense.  She wouldn't be waiting tables at a high end restaurant where she could make some serious bank in tips.  She'd be working at the equivalent of a Denny's and likely have no benefits.  At least at Eastland I would assume she would have health insurance and she's got room and board.  Paying rent, utilities and food on a server's salary would wipe her out.  Would have made more sense to have her contemplating going to another school.

 

I think the writers played fast and loose with finances in general.  Edna's Edibles was pretty much destroyed and the girls' belongings upstairs were destroyed because of water and smoke.  Even so, would they really collect enough in insurance to completely rebuild the store into a new format and stock it with merchandise and stay afloat?  Again, I think about this way too much.

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They should have had Mrs. Garrett open a small bed & breakfast instead of another store. The girls still could work there and they could have had "wacky" guests. It might have breathed a little more life into the show.

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Another thing that bugged me about the waitress episode is that Mrs. Garrett keeps going on about eating dog food and not depending on Blair hiding her at the Warner estate. Uh. Did she forget she has two children and at least one is doing very well for himself? There's no way she'll end up on the street eating dog food.

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I got the DVD set and I'm watching "Less than Perfect," a ninth-season episode I don't recall seeing at all.

The premise: After driving her boyfriend Casey home, Blair falls asleep at the wheel and ends up in a nasty accident.

She's in the hospital freaked out about her looks (understandable, especially because it's Blair). But the whole thing has a forced maudlin VSE feel to it, and it's not very enjoyable to watch.

Also, I don't buy Casey as her type. His personality and style don't seem like that of someone she'd be attracted to. I guess the writers thought it'd show the "evolution" of Blair's character, but it wasn't all that believable.

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I quit watching the original airings around the time Beverly and Over Our Heads began. The former was clearly sppsd to be a replacement for Mrs Garrett and the latter had no logical reason to be there, other than to possibly tap into the crappy giftshop fad of the time.

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I think the writers played fast and loose with finances in general.  Edna's Edibles was pretty much destroyed and the girls' belongings upstairs were destroyed because of water and smoke.  Even so, would they really collect enough in insurance to completely rebuild the store into a new format and stock it with merchandise and stay afloat?  Again, I think about this way too much.

 

Eh, possibly. Not that I claim to know anything about this, but we had a fire in my condo complex last year. The unit that was destroyed was entirely rebuilt...and dubbed "the Taj Mahal" by neighbors. So they might indeed have been able to rebuild as well as they did.

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Logo ran the episode where the Pamela Segal character first gets involved with the cast: first with the graffiti, then pretending to be a gang member, then extorting Blair. Oh my stars. I'd never seen this episode before and I have to say, she is hands down the most irritating side character EVER. In ANY show. It's amazing this was not a Jump the Shark moment--she is THAT bad. What was her deal anyway? Just a bored kid who looked up to Jo? Hanh? And that's supposed to justify vandalism, extortion and her pathetic gang charade? I always cringe whenever the FOL cast gets forced into taking in all these emotional orphans--it wasn't really believable with the princess character and it's not here.

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I stumbled across an episode yesterday where Tootie befriends a latch key kid.  Naturally, the block needs to be evacuated and Tootie goes into her "spaz freakout mode".  Rather than trying to find the mom, Mrs. G (a stranger) tries to lie her way into getting the kid to open the door and Tootie has to save the day.  Later, Tootie, a kid lectures the mom about how bad she is to leave her child alone.  It's so irritating.

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On 3/29/2017 at 10:19 AM, CurlyATX said:

I stumbled across an episode yesterday where Tootie befriends a latch key kid.  Naturally, the block needs to be evacuated and Tootie goes into her "spaz freakout mode".  Rather than trying to find the mom, Mrs. G (a stranger) tries to lie her way into getting the kid to open the door and Tootie has to save the day.  Later, Tootie, a kid lectures the mom about how bad she is to leave her child alone.  It's so irritating.

If I remember correctly the mother is played by Jean Smart.

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On ‎3‎/‎27‎/‎2017 at 5:46 PM, CeeBeeGee said:

Logo ran the episode where the Pamela Segal character first gets involved with the cast: first with the graffiti, then pretending to be a gang member, then extorting Blair. Oh my stars. I'd never seen this episode before and I have to say, she is hands down the most irritating side character EVER. In ANY show. It's amazing this was not a Jump the Shark moment--she is THAT bad.

I dunno, I thought Princess Piper was pretty bad.

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I liked Princess Alex. Yeah, she had her moments in her first episode but Blair kept putting her down. I thought she was nicer in her following episodes. She even ended up liking Roy(!) which got him off Jo's back.

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