Season 2, Episode 13
It’s time for the Season 2 finale! At the conclusion of this post, we’ll have completed half of the seasons, but only two-fifths of the series, as Season 4 contains a whopping 26 god-awful episodes. Regardless, it still feels like an important milestone has been reached here at Notes From The Avalon.
We open on Arseman and Courtney sitting in The Avalon. Courtney is wearing her necklace again, so Arseman squeaks, “It still looks good on you!” as if its brief stay in Amanda’s purse could have somehow changed its (or Courtney’s) appearance. Headband has mixed feelings aboot it since her moronic tendency to take Brooke’s gossip as gospel truth basically forced Janice to transfer to another school. She fears that Janice’s whole family has left town because she tried to call her last night but got no answer. Arseman tells her not to feel guilty and assures her that Janice will turn up sooner or later.
In the student lounge, Roxanne is still badgering Chris to talk Dylan into firing Billy from the band. Chris explains that this is easier said than done as Dylan seems to feel some kind of moral obligation to keep Deadpool on, especially since he’s been having troubles at home. Roxanne reaches the end of her very short rope and snorts, “So is this a band or a support group for unhappy kids? Fine. Do what you want. It doesn’t matter to me if your band stays mediocre. Just don’t ask me for advice anymore.”
Roxanne splits as Ashley walks into view and Chris jumps oot of his seat to greet her. She compliments him on the concert, but he dismisses her flattery and declares that they were lousy, causing her to exclaim, “don’t talk that way aboot my favorite band!” She continues, “actually, the band was pretty good…you were great. i was listening to you especially.” Pinkasaurus then pulls oot all the stops in her pathetic attempt at whispered seduction:
Ashley: and by the way, you also give good advice. i spent an hour doing math homework last night.
Chris: So what’s that got to do with me?
Ashley: you’re the one who told me not to kill myself trying to get an a. normally, i would have spent four hours but i remembered the chris macdonald philosophy of life.
Chris: Oh yeah. That philosophy.
Ashley: live your own life the way you want to and don’t waste time worrying aboot what anybody else thinks.
Since that was literally a word for word repetition of his stupid maxim, I’m guessing that she spent the additional three hours normally devoted to math homework memorizing it last night. As if reading my blog thoughts, Chris exclaims, “Hey, almost word for word!” to which Ashley replies, “that was word for word.” Chris smiles and says, “I’m beginning to like your style!” just as Matt descends the stairwell and gives the hairy eyeball to Ashley’s shamelessly flirtatious display. He lingers long enough to hear Chris ask her on a date (to The Avalon, of course), an invitation which she giddily accepts.
Deadpool enters The Avalon and runs into Arseman and Courtney on their way oot the door. He asks if it’s true that Amanda stole the necklace and Courtney confirms that it is, adding, “Apparently, Amanda’s not the sweet little thing we all thought she was.”
Eventually, after we’ve had some time to get used to Roxanne, she’ll become one of the more tolerable characters on the show, but at this point, nothing aboot her makes any sense. Although she was only seen in passing and never spoke a line prior to the end of the last episode, now she’s just walking around the school giving her unsolicited opinions to everyone she sees as if she has the seniority to be so bold, kind of like Arseman at the beginning of the season. Now she descends on Brooke’s table in the lounge and starts giving her the third degree aboot Amanda’s criminal tendencies. Brooke responds in the usual fashion, feigning disbelief at her sister’s actions and taking credit for having exposed them, concluding that Amanda should be ashamed of herself for letting their family down. Roxanne self-righteously erupts, “Letting down your family? And you? What aboot how she let Courtney down by taking the necklace and Janice by blaming her? What aboot them?!” Brooke reluctantly concedes, “Well, them, too, of course,” causing Roxanne to stand up and bellow for the benefit of the two nameless onlookers hovering behind them, “Absolutely! You know something, Brooke? I’m starting to form an opinion aboot Amanda. I’m starting to think that she’s even worse than you are!” The camera pans oot to show Who Farted sitting at a nearby table with some other kids taking in the exchange.
Brooke marches over to Amanda at her locker.
Brooke: How could you do this to all of us?!
Amanda: Thanks for your support, Brooke.
Brooke: How could you? You managed to hurt Courtney and Janice and me – and the family.
Amanda: You and the family? What’s it got to do with you and the family?!
Brooke: (rolling her eyes) Nobody seems to understand this! You have besmirched our family name.
Brooke: I never thought a sister of mine would stoop so low.
Amanda: Oh, sure…and you’re just perfect, aren’t you?
Brooke: Or that you’d have the nerve to show your face at school after committing such a crime.
Amanda: Brooke, just stuff a sock in it!!
Amanda storms off leaving Brooke to mutter under her breath, “Well, there you go. People do get what they deserve sooner or later”. A kid standing behind her closes his locker and responds, “You better hope not, Brooke.” That was this kid’s first and only spoken line, but he’s no stranger to those who’ve been watching from the beginning. He has long hair, wears a black cap and vest and seems to show up everywhere, making me wonder why he never got his moment in the sun as a named cast member. For the final scene of Season 1, he was playing bass in Dylan’s garage, so maybe they had initially tapped him to play Chris before Andrew Baskin auditioned for the role and proved that his depiction of a total cocksucker was second to none.
In the boys’ locker room, Matt puts his jacket on and gets ready to leave when Dave enters and reminds him that it’s lunchtime and they were supposed to play some one on one. Matt tells him that he’s busy and doesn’t see the point in practicing when he’s only playing five minutes per game. Dave is sure that he’ll get more court time soon, but Matt replies that he’ll believe it when he sees it. Not wanting to waste this opportunity to moralize, Dave reaches into his metaphorical trousers and miraculously fishes oot a tiny pair of balls.
Dave: I mean, things are gonna turn oot okay. Things are already okay, right? You’re back on the team and you’re not doing anymore…
Matt: Anymore what?
Dave: You know…that problem you used to have…with drinking?
Matt: Oh. That problem.
Dave: You’re not doing that anymore, right?
Matt: Of course not! So why bring it up?!
Dave: I was just pointing oot that…things are going okay. Things in general. Matt, can I ask you something? What’s bugging you?
Matt: Nothing! Okay…it’s Ashley. I mean, we could always talk to each other – that’s something we always had. But in the last couple of weeks…I don’t know. It’s like there’s this huge wall between us. We can’t even say hello anymore.
Dave: You still…you really care aboot her, don’t you?
Matt: No. Yeah.
Dave: Why don’t you tell her that instead of just trying to say hello?
Well, I did specify that it was a tiny pair of balls, after all, but it still managed to elicit this reaction from Drinky Crow:
In the hallway, Deadpool is bragging to John that “this is exactly how the Beatles started oot! They started doing high school gigs when they were our age!” His new little acquaintance and future punching bag asks, “Who are the Beatles?” while Deadpool takes a drink from the water fountain and nearly spits it oot in bewilderment over John’s astounding pop culture ignorance. All kidding aside, I once dated a young woman who asked me this very same question, marking one of the most profoundly depressing moments in my entire romantic history. Spotting his sister coming down the stairs, Billy asks her to confirm the allegations he just made to John aboot the Beatles getting their start in high school, but rather than answer his question, she again wisely counsels her little brother not to get carried away with these impetuous rock star dreams. Sensing his disappointment, she tries to soften the blow of her blunt pragmatism just as Amanda approaches, rendering Headband momentarily speechless.
Amanda: You got your necklace back.
Amanda: That’s what you wanted, isn’t it?
Courtney: Well, yeah…
Amanda: Good! So now you can stop telling everyone what a horrible person I am!
Courtney: I haven’t said anything like that at all!
Amanda: (turning to Billy) And you! I bet you’re getting a great laugh oot of this! I bet you love it that everybody hates me!
Deadpool shows some class and denies her accusation that he’s wallowing in schadenfreude, adding that he just thinks the whole thing is really sad. That, of course, is far worse to a sneering little shit like Amanda, so she flees from the upsetting conversation that she initiated.
Coming down the stairs, Alfred E. Newman is co-opting Deadpool’s Beatles origin story for the benefit of Leah. Rather than remind him of his theory that intelligent boys don’t go anywhere near girls, she reacts with interest to his second-hand allegations aboot the Fab Four. Pumping change into the soda machine, he continues, “They practically started in day care, and when you start really young, that’s when you get to the top!” Leah excitedly responds, “Wouldn’t it be incredible if Teenagers In Love got to be really big stars? Maybe they’ll get a TV show or even their own Saturday morning cartoon!” So Leah thinks Dylan and the gang could one day be just as popular with preschoolers wired on Cocoa Puffs as Josie and the Pussycats or The Brady Six. Sounds aboot right. John takes this as his cue to make the inevitable proposition that they start a band, something he’s sure will be a stunning success since they’re even younger than the members of Teenagers In Love. Getting down to brass tacks, they suddenly realize that neither of them knows how to play an instrument, but this is a mere technicality for Dumbo who optimistically declares, “Then we’ll just have to learn!” All of this pointless filler material revolving around the two most inconsequential characters currently in the show hardly seems fitting for a season finale. Wake the fuck up, Binkley, you’ve got a mere ten minutes left in which to blow our minds.
Chris spots Arseman at a booth in The Avalon and takes a seat across from her. He asks for her honest opinion aboot their performance, but Sassy Pants isn’t keen on dissecting the concert any further. Regardless, he continues to press, so she finally tells him that she thought they were fine for a bunch of amateurs playing their first gig, then asks what he thinks.
Chris: I think I don’t wanna be with a bunch of amateurs for the rest of my life, and I think – you’re not gonna agree with this…
Arseman: That’s cool.
Chris: I think that for everybody’s sake, including Billy’s, we should maybe think aboot looking for a new drummer.
Arseman: How is this for Billy’s sake?
Chris: Well, he knows himself that he’s not really good enough.
Arseman: No, actually, Chris, if you ever paid any attention to how Billy feels, you’d know he’s having the time of his life. He wants to make this his career!
Chris: For everybody else’s sake, then…come on, Arseman! I know you like him, but you know he’s no good! Don’t you see? We need a new drummer if we’re ever gonna get anywhere.
Arseman: Where do you wanna get? I thought I was joining a garage band for fun. Billy keeps the beat—
Chris: He rushes the beat.
Arseman: So he’ll learn. The rest of us aren’t such hot stuff, either, you know. I mean, this isn’t Guns ‘N’ Roses! All I want is to have a good time.
Chris: That’s not all I want.
Courtney sees Ashley at her locker and asks if she’s seen or heard anything from Janice. She hasn’t. That’s it. Seriously. This is what passes for a fucking scene in this supposedly climactic season finale.
Chris enters Dylan’s garage and tells him that he talked to Jerry at The Avalon aboot whether they’ll get another gig. He informs Leather Jacket that Jerry “hedged…he didn’t say yes, he didn’t say no,” but I have to wonder if Chris even bothered to make sure that Jerry was awake before badgering him aboot another concert opportunity. Dylan scoffs, “He always does that,” which is either a dig at Jerry’s terrible personality or an acknowledgment of his undiagnosed narcolepsy. Finally, Chris tells Dylan that Jerry eventually said yes, on one condition: “He wants us to get a new drummer”. Filth Pig clearly has his faults, but I suspect this little story aboot his demand for a personnel change is something Chris concocted on his way over to the garage. Call me cynical.
Dylan: Jerry said that? He just came right oot and said, ‘I want you guys to get a new drummer”?
Dylan: Or are you the one that said it?
Chris: Alright! I told him that both you and me were worried aboot the drummer and he said, ‘Yeah, I agree completely’. He said that’s his biggest problem with the band and if we stick with Billy, he doesn’t think he’ll hire us again!
Dylan argues with his aggressive little band mate for a spell, then finally caves and advises Chris that he’ll tell Billy he’s oot of the band.
Jesus Jones! With only six fucking minutes to go, the writers suddenly decide this is a good time for a scene involving Dave and Big Ears, two characters who have never interacted on screen before whose only common bond is a flair for crushing boredom. As Dave passes by his table in the lounge, John asks him if he’s “heard the big news”. Distracted, Dave tells Babar that he’s looking for Matt but can’t find him anywhere, then momentarily patronizes him by asking him aboot the “big news”. John replies, “There’s gonna be a new rock band at Hillside! Me and Tristan and Leah!” Alright, first of all, nobody cares aboot this little homunculus and his stupid rock star aspirations and second of all, who the fuck is Tristan?! Dave obviously has other things on his mind and when he finally splits, John drifts into a reverie while muttering something aboot being “bigger than the Beatles”. To describe the concert-themed dream sequence that follows wouldn’t be half as illustrative as the following series of visual aids, so brace yourself.
The next scene opens on Courtney at her – holy shit! I’ve never been so happy to realize that I provided erroneous information on this page. It’s Janice!!! She excitedly greets Headband and tells her that she came to finish the school transfer paperwork and heard that Amanda confessed, asking, “Why didn’t anybody tell me?” Courtney apologizes profusely and explains that she tried to call but couldn’t reach her. Janice seems confused at first before suddenly realizing, “Oh, our phone’s oot of order!” Is that something that happened back in the golden age of landlines? I’ve honestly forgotten. Anyway, they confirm that they’re still friends and hug each other tightly. Though I’m happy that Janice was finally vindicated, this episode is definitely the last time we’ll ever see her, since she doesn’t return for Season 3. I wish I could hug her, too.
At the garage, Deadpool is telling Chris and Dylan that he thinks the band can really go somewhere, completely unaware of the thermonuclear bomb that’s aboot to drop on him. He asks if anyone’s talked to Jerry and Chris replies, “It’s complicated. Dylan will tell you all aboot it,” before bailing to meet Ashley at The Avalon, leaving Dylan to break the news himself. He begins, “Listen…there’s something I gotta tell you.”
Courtney and Janice are sitting at The Avalon counter when Matt walks in and asks if they’ve seen Ashley. Headband reacts to his inquiry like a deer caught in the headlights, but Janice is refreshingly ignorant of Matt’s love quadrilateral, so she cheerfully volunteers, “She’s in the pinball room with Chris!” He looks towards the rear of the café and sees this shit:
Matt, blindsided by this unexpected turn of events, staggers over to a table near the door and lowers himself into the chair like an old man with hemorrhoids. Janice asks Courtney if she said something wrong, but Headband has a ridiculously low tolerance for conversation aboot anyone’s issues but her own, so she changes the subject to Jake and the fact that he’s coming home from China on Friday. She tells Janice that she wants to throw him a welcome home party at her place, adding that she’s both excited and scared to see him again after all this time.
Ashley walks in from the pinball room and runs into Matt who asks if she has a minute. She reluctantly agrees to hear him oot.
Matt: Look, I’ve been thinking a lot aboot you and me…what I’ve been thinking is I’d like it more than anything if we could give things just one more try.
Matt: No pressure! I mean, if it doesn’t work oot, it doesn’t work oot. So look…there’s gonna be some sort of party for Jake on Friday and what I was thinking is – I mean, what would you think aboot you and me going together?
Chris walks in from the pinball room.
Chris: That’s a nice offer, Matt. The problem is, Ashley’s already going to the party…with me.
He puts his arm around Ashley’s shoulder as he daringly fixes Matt’s gaze.
Ashley: matt, i would have explained except i didn’t get the chance.
Matt: Hey. No problem. Good luck to both of you. I hope it lasts forever.
Well, that was some heavy shit and it was great to get some closure on Janice, but I don’t know. This season coda kinda left me feeling like a guy who ate a heaping portion of Chinese foods…aboot an hour ago. As always, thanks for reading, my friends. I’ll be back to dive head-first into Season 3 quicker than you can say egg foo young.