Writer: Judy Spencer
Director: Ross K. Bagwell, Jr.
Original air date: August 16, 1991
This episode has a 1991 copyright.
This episode is on the DVD, in terms of data files, after “Double Date”, but the episodes are listed in the correct order in the episode selection menu.
In the cold open, Mr. Ernst is fixing the intercom speaker at the ranch’s entrance. Wait, what? Since when have they had an intercom here?
Anyway, Lucy comes by, having finished the schedule. Wait, what? Lucy does the scheduling? Yeah, actually. It’s an obscure detail that they remembered.
Mr. Ernst is happy to see Danny and Jake having “plain, old-fashioned, non-violent fun”. He praises the staff and likes to think he’s been a positive influence on them.
He changes his mind when he realizes Buddy was in the barrel.
After the credits, two boys sit at a table for lunch, and another boy warns the one in the Raiders cap that he “can’t sit” in “Roy’s place”. Brad points out that there’s plenty of room elsewhere. The kid goes on about Roy Bigelow being a badass and tries to scare the Raiders kid with a story. The Raiders kid doesn’t buy it. The kid warns the Raiders kid against doing three things: 1) staring at Roy, 2) touching Roy, and 3) spilling anything on Roy. Also, Roy always scratches his head before pounding somebody. The Raiders kid still doesn’t buy it and tells the Roy fanboy to fuck off.
Skipping ahead a bit, the Roy fanboy is named Shermie. Shermie is played by Sean Robison, who doesn’t seem to have an IMDb entry. His acting is pretty bad.
Kid no. 2 is played by John Martinez, and there are so fucking many of them that I have no idea if he has an IMDb entry or not.
Roy shows up and looks “intimidating”, so the Raiders kid scoots over. Roy is played by Sean Kennedy, and there are so fucking many of them that I have no idea if he has an IMDb entry or not.
Shermie cleans the bench before Roy sits down. Roy asks if the Raiders kid is staring at him, and the Raiders kid quickly breaks eye contact. Roy takes the kid’s plate and admonishes Shermie for providing him with a dirty glass. Shermie apologizes. Roy swipes the second kid’s drink. When the kid protests, Roy stares at him, and the kid backs down.
Brad comes by and tries to extend customer courtesy while also admonishing Roy for taking the kid’s glass. Roy tries to get the kid to “admit” he gave him the glass. Brad calls Roy out on taking the glass. They get into an argument.
Jake comes by, trying to diffuse the situation, but then Roy pisses Brad off by calling her a “babe”.
Jake takes Brad aside and admonishes her for arguing with the guests. Fuck you, Jake, she was justified. Roy is an asshole, he was rude to her, and she stood up for herself.
Besides, this is part of who Brad is. Continuing from last week, let’s pause for a bit and discuss Bradley Taylor, the people person. She doesn’t exist. We know Brad hates serving people and argues with guests. Hell, she was ready and willing to lose her job by arguing with Kyle when she thought he was a guest. Any personal relationships that she’s developed with fellow staff members aren’t strong enough to make her want to hold on to this job. Standing up for herself is more important to her. While I have a much thicker skin than she does (I don’t care what people say or think about me) and can hold my tongue (she sometimes does and even apologizes for nothing, but Jake blames her anyway), I don’t fault her for speaking out. Jake doesn’t understand this is who Brad is.
On top of that, Brad mentions Roy has been terrorizing all of the Young Buckaroos, and Jake actually says that’s “still no excuse” for Brad to “lose it”. Yes, it fucking is. Jake wants to try psychology (his “specialty”) on Roy. Jake has Brad take care of the burgers while he handles the tables. Brad agrees but tells Jake to watch himself.
Roy demands ketchup from Shermie.
He also gets pissed at Jake for waiting on someone else before him, because “Roy Bigelow does not wait”. He even pounds the table in frustration. Villain’s a bit over the top this week, ain’t he?
The kid to Roy’s left even wants Jake to serve Roy first as a “personal favor”, but Jake refuses. Roy accuses Jake of staring at him. They talk about it for a bit.
Then Jake pats Roy. They discuss that as well, and Roy threatens to beat Jake up. Brad arrives with the burgers, and she and Jake fight over who gets to serve them.
Jake apologizes. Roy shoves Jake and says he “just went on the endangered species list”, which is so hokey that I just can’t take Roy seriously.
Brad tries to intervene, and…what the hell? Jake is taller than Roy. This shouldn’t even be a tense moment.
Mr. Ernst and Buddy pass by, and Shermie warns Roy, who gets all smiley. If Roy was ready to beat up a Bar None staff member, why’s he worried about the nerdy boss? He’d get kicked off the ranch and possibly arrested regardless.
Oh, and Mr. Ernst doesn’t even notice the food on Roy.
Roy decides “now’s not the time” and postpones the fight: “3:00. The corral. Be there.”
Or don’t. Problem solved.
Brad even makes fun of this line when she relates what happened.
Jake believes he’s gonna die.
Melody believes “Roy really can’t be that bad. Nobody could.” Did she forget about the robber that was gonna put her in the mine shaft?
Danny says, in Arts and Crafts, Roy poured glue all over a girl and bonded her to the wall. Wait, wait, wait. I find this difficult to believe. Roy participated in Arts and Crafts? Anyway, why didn’t Danny report him?
Buddy saw Roy shaking down kids for protection money ($5 per hour). Buddy got the “economy plan” (3 hours for $14.50). Why didn’t Buddy report Roy? WHY HASN’T ANYONE REPORTED ROY?!
Jake hopes avoiding Roy will make Roy forget about him.
Oh, hey, Kyle. What are you gonna contribute this week?
Oh, he tries to convince Jake to fight Roy. I should’ve seen that coming. Fuck you, Kyle.
Ted and Danny agree with Kyle for whatever fucking reason (penises, most likely).
Danny then immediately contradicts himself (it’s amazing) by suggesting Jake run to Mexico.
Some tape damage.
Kyle tries to convince Jake that he can’t back down, because he’ll be “living in shame” for the rest of his days. Not if Jake’s not the kind of person that cares what other people think of him.
Jake says he’s not a coward, but he’s never been in a fight before. He “forgot” about his “fight” with “Jed”. Kyle wants to teach Jake how to fight, but Ted claims he “used to be pretty tough back in the old neighborhood”. Kyle counters a man that “grows up in the West” “knows these things”. Ted calls Kyle “Cowboy Bob” and himself “Rocky”. Kyle tries to show Jake a fighting stance and tells him to dance around.
Jake does part of a Jakedance (even though he doesn’t refer to it as such). Ted shoves “Michael Jackson” onto the couch. Ted and Kyle argue over who has fighting skills, and Kyle actually asks Ted how many fights that he’s been in, seemingly forgetting he and Ted went at it – twice – not long ago.
Melody breaks up the argument and suggests talking to Roy. No one takes her suggestion seriously, and Brad calls Roy “impossible”. Melody believes her approach is correct and talks herself up as really nice (Danny gets a cute joke in). Melody speechifies about the power of nice and goes off to talk to Roy, leaving the others concerned.
Roy is hanging out on the corral, even though the fight doesn’t start for quite a while. Shermie is talking up Roy’s upcoming victory…to Roy.
Melody comes by and introduces herself. Roy insults her. Shermie tries to get Melody to leave, because “Roy does not have time for this small talk”. Roy has Shermie run a lap (seriously).
Melody brings up the “disagreement” between Roy and Jake. Roy announces his murderous intentions. Seriously, he says “I gotta kill him.” Melody tries to be all understanding, which seems to surprise Roy. She tries to psychoanalyze him, and he seems to agree. Melody calls herself a “people person”. She agrees with Roy that she’s nice (well, she’s definitely not modest). Roy says he hates nice, and nice people “are insult to” his intelligence.
Melody asks Roy if he’d beat up a girl.
No, he wouldn’t.
Right before the cut to the next scene, Melody screams something that sounds like it belongs in the next scene (or maybe it’s just a poor use of ADR, since Melody’s lips clearly aren’t moving). I can’t understand it, but it sounds an awful lot like “Fuck off!”
Okay, that, I understand.
Melody is fucking pissed and wants to go all terrorist on Roy. Seriously, she talks about killing Roy herself and asks for explosives. This would never appear on a children’s series today.
Melody also gets mad at Danny for trying to say “I told you so”, and then she complains to Jake about having horse spit in her hair, and, yeah, that’s fucking disgusting, but why didn’t Melody stop to at least change into dry clothes before coming back to the main lodge?
Jake asks Melody for any other ideas, and Melody suggests machine guns and concussion grenades. She sees no other way of dealing with “this psycho”. What an ironic statement. To borrow a phrase from Mighty God King, Melody Hanson is motherfucking psycho bugfuck crazy. Massive kudos to Christine Taylor for selling this performance.
Melody adds Roy Bigelow should be staying at the Vlecks’ place, because they “deserve each other”. This inspires Jake to call the Vlecks and get them to deal with Roy.
Right before the (unusually fast and abrupt) fade to commercial, Melody grabs hold of Danny and professes her excitement at how the Vlecks are gonna “get” Roy.
After the commercial break, holy shit, it’s Lonnie and Karl Vleck! I’d never expected to see them again! Paul Olmer is back for his third and final appearance as Lonnie Vleck, and ditto for Don Wyllie as Karl Vleck. IMDb doesn’t credit them for their appearances in this episode, hence my confusion. I admit it’s a nice feeling when the Internet doesn’t spoil me, and I end up being surprised as a result.
After some banter, Jake tells Lonnie what he wants him to do, and it sounds good to him, but why didn’t Jake bring it up over the phone? Did he just say “Hey, can you two come over? I wanna talk to you”, and then they got on their horses and rode over to the Bar None, not knowing what to expect? Also, if Jake needs just Lonnie, why’s Karl there? I know the real-world answer: comedic duo.
Lonnie and Karl have a “Vleck conference”, which worries Danny. The Vlecks want something from them. They’d raised a collection but, to Jake’s surprise, collected only $4. Jake offers to throw in some free drum lessons. Dumbass, if you believe your life really is at stake (which it isn’t), pay up out of your own pocket.
They’re gonna leave, so Jake desperately asks them what they want.
By the way, the girls didn’t just pop up out of nowhere. They were in the scene at the beginning but got out of the way when Lonnie and Karl dismounted, probably because they didn’t want them to mount them.
Also, sorry to disappoint, but Vic and Valerie don’t appear in this episode. Jake does ask Lonnie and Karl about them, but they don’t answer.
Anyway, after a bit of gay humor, Jake starts “crying” and telling the girls that he told “Shermie the weasel” to tell Roy to meet him, and Roy’s gonna be here “any minute”. What happened to 3:00 at the corral?
A concerned Melody takes Brad aside to discuss it, and Jake immediately drops the act.
Brad lays out the terms: one date, not to exceed three hours, no kissing, no hand-holding, and they reserve the right to not talk to the idiots or watch them eat. Melody adds “you” have to swear to not tell “a single soul” about this, which is so vague as to be legally useless. Jake swears, and Karl and Lonnie say it’s a deal.
Buddy comes by and heralds Roy’s arrival.
Roy’s not intimidated and has Shermie say Lonnie has to prove he’s “worthy” to “fight Roy Bigelow” by taking “the test of strength”. Jake’s like “What the fuck?” Lonnie, however, agrees.
Yeah, Roy got Lonnie to knock himself out (somehow). Roy tells Jake that “Roy Bigelow always wins” (notice how he and Shermie often refer to him by his full name?), and he’ll be waiting.
At 2:30 PM, in the boys’ bunk house, they discuss it. The dates are off, which is a good thing.
Melody tells Jake that hiding underneath the bunk bed – much like murder, fighting, lying, and buying back your clothing – is not the answer. I love how this has become a recurring thing with her. She wants to get Jake “ready for this fight super-fast” by hunting down one of Ted’s protein bars from when he was “on that body-building kick”. We never saw this, unless she’s referring to this, but that was last summer, so ewww. Jake makes a joke, and I love Brad’s little laugh. Melody finds a bar that’s “a little stale-looking” but “probably still effective”. Jake says it’s “the most disgusting thing” that he’s ever eaten. He tosses it on the floor near Brad, and she kicks it away and brings up confronting and taking control of your fears – from “Jake’s Guide to Life”. Ooh, nice try, Brad. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work.
Danny wants to “evaluate the situation, step by step”, which succeeds in eating up some more of the running time.
Brad demands Jake talk to Mr. Ernst. Melody agrees. Jake wants them to keep quiet, because it’s his problem.
It’s 2:45 PM, and Jake’s begging Mr. Ernst to intervene.
Hey, what’s Mr. Ernst’s old computer doing on his desk? Buddy had fucked it up, and he’d gotten a new one. I kinda had a feeling that the change might not last.
Mr. Ernst believes Jake’s blown this out of proportion but agrees to talk to Roy’s parents.
Mr. Ernst talks himself up and says he’ll be back in five minutes.
Hey, check it out: another random female staff member on desk duty.
Yeah, Roy’s dad beat Mr. Ernst up while Roy’s mom held him down in the dirt. They’re “a fairly excitable bunch”.
Mr. Ernst wants Jake to defend “the Ernst family honor”. The “Ernst motto” (other than “We like math”) is “An Ernst never backs down”, which Jake doesn’t remember.
Mr. Ernst goes through “the old equipment bag” (which we’ve never seen before).
Damn, feelings of inflicting violence are running high in this episode, aren’t they?
Mr. Ernst relates backstory on how boxing turned him from a weakling into a “tough guy”. When he discovered his “skills” as a “pugilist”, he found all of the confidence that he needed. This seems to be consistent with what we learned in “Killer Ernst” (season 3, episode 10). Jake is skeptical. There seems to be some bad ADR or an audio glitch as Mr. Ernst starts to demonstrate.
The joke is Mr. Ernst tires himself out, so he’s nowhere near in as good a shape as he thinks he is. Jake thanks him anyway.
Buddy comes in and wonders what the fuck happened to his dad. Jake says he’s resting, and they leave the office.
The gang meets in the main lodge. Ted says they have a plan, but Jake wants them to call his parents, leave a message on the machine (nice bit of consistency), and tell them that he loves them. He apologizes to Buddy for all of those “mean things” that he did to him at “the Ernst family get-togethers”. Buddy says they weren’t that mean. Jake’s relieved, because he’s really not that sorry. Jake leaves Danny his drums and Ted his book collection. Ted would really rather have the drums, which earns him slaps from the girls, but he claims he’s “just kidding”.
Ted hands Jake a bus ticket to Phoenix. Danny’s aunt lives there. He’d already called her, and she said Jake can stay there as long as he likes. Brad packed Jake a bag, and Melody packed him a bagged lunch for the bus ride.
Buddy puts a “disguise” on Jake (to fool Roy), and Kyle adds a fedora. Kyle says Jake better hurry, because they got him a ride to the bus terminal. Jake feels like he’s letting them down, but Melody says they just want him to be okay; that’s the most important thing. They send him off.
At the corral, Roy practices his moves, and Shermie talks him up.
The two kids from lunch – as well as some others, who were also at lunch – have shown up to watch the fight. Melody tries to convince them that there won’t be a fight.
Shit, IMDb is slacking on this episode! The Young Buckaroos are played by Holly A. Dixon, Katherine Hansen, Neil Atchley, David Stadnick, Troy Sims, and K. C. Yasmer. Hansen and Yasmer previously appeared in “Lost in the Desert” (season 4, episode 07) and “Presumed Stupid” (season 5, episode 08). Dixon, Atchley, Stadnick, and Sims don’t seem to have IMDb entries.
If you’re wondering why I’m having so much trouble with the actors in this episode, it’s because IMDb’s page for this episode credits only David Brisbin and Daniel Andre.
Melody talks with “Shermie the weasel”. She hates him, because he’s Roy’s friend, “and that’s all that matters”. Shermie admits they’re “not exactly friends” and reveals every kid in school used to beat him up before he started hanging out with Roy. Now, “nobody dare touch Roy Bigelow’s buddy”. Melody points out that , in return, Shermie acts like his slave, and Roy treats him like dirt. Shermie says taking “a little abuse” is better than getting beat up all of the time. Melody sarcastically says “it’s a really great system”.
It’s 3:01 PM, and Roy tells Melody that it looks like Jake ain’t showing up, but…
Melody wants Jake to go and catch the bus, but Jake is “through running”. He hands Melody the fedora. Why’d he bring that, of all things, to the corral?
Roy offers Jake “one shot for free, just for showin’ up”. Jake says he’s not gonna fight Roy. Roy is confused. Jake says he’s not scared of Roy and invites Roy to beat him up. Jake points out that everyone’s so scared of Roy, and that’s how he works. They just do whatever he wants them to do. That’s why Roy Bigelow always wins, but not this time. Jake again invites Roy to beat him up and “impress” the guests; he won’t stop him.
Roy won’t let Jake “look good in front of everyone”. Roy declares the fight is “officially postponed” (which disappoints the kids), but then he quickly changes it to “off” until he he says different. Jake refuses to get out of his way – twice. Not willing to let Jake look good, Roy has to walk around Jake.
Even Shermie seems to have learned to stand up to Roy, blatantly staring at him (though he doesn’t admit it) and walking away from him. Blink, and you’ll miss it, but Melody smiles at this. Roy goes after him, but we don’t learn what happens.
After learning Roy’s gone “for good” (how do they know this?), Jake faints. Ha. Kyle checks on him.
The pre-credits scene at the end, on another day, has Jake repeating the same joke that Ted didn’t get back in “Rest in Pieces” (season 5, episode 04), perhaps for Kyle’s benefit, since he wasn’t there.
Lucy is re-fixing the intercom speaker, because something that Mr. Ernst did shorted out the entire system. I guess this was a “subplot”.
Lucy is proud of Jake for the way that he stood up to Roy, but that raises the question of where Lucy was during all of this.
Kyle asks how Jake knew “Roy Bigelow” would back down, and Jake admits he didn’t, but it was a “pleasant surprise”. Yeah, Jake was extremely lucky that Roy didn’t beat him up – or make good on his threat to kill him. I don’t know if Jake’s brave or stupid. Wait, I do know. Jake could have just avoided Roy entirely.
Lucy spots a barrel rolling and is upset that Mr. Ernst is gonna have a fit once he sees Buddy doing this shit. Another “subplot” that I was unaware of.
They all chase after the barrel, which hits a rock. Danny admonishes Buddy.
Buddy arrives, having heard them call him.
Ha. It turns out that Mr. Ernst had Buddy roll him in the barrel, and he had so much fun that he wants to do it again.
So ends another day at the Bar None.
This episode was okay. It was kinda funny, but it really made no sense. Why do Jake or the others care what other people think of him? He could have simply dismissed Roy’s threat as the non-issue that it was and simply not given a shit what a bunch of kids thought of him.
Anyone notice how disjointed that the cast was in this episode? Ted didn’t show up until six minutes in and then disappeared again until minutes before the fight. The Vleck kids put in cameos. Brad missed the fight entirely. Lucy was in only the cold open and the final pre-credits scene, which really have nothing to do with the main plot. It’s so weird, and it’s proof that you can’t have this many characters in a 25-minute (including themes) episode.
Kyle was his usual useless self, trying to pressure Jake into the fight and getting into it with Ted over fighting (at least it wasn’t over Brad). He could have been cut easily. Was it in Geoffrey Coy’s contract that he be in a certain number of episodes?
Overall, an average episode, but be sure to be on the lookout for the direct-to-VHS porn sequel: “Roy Bigelow: Five-Dollar Gigolo”. Three hours of action for only $14.50!
It’s the final countdown!: 2