What’s a fashion show without a drag queen?

Don’t try to hide it, Jessie—your secret is out!

The gang is gathered at the Max when Lisa runs in, blathering about how a recruiter from the Fashion Institute in New York is coming to Bayside to meet her. This can mean only one thing: It’s the episode where Lisa and Zack hook up! Anyway, Lisa needs to do something to impress the recruiter, so Zack suggests having a fashion show. What a brilliant idea…a fashion show for a fashion recruiter. It’s a wonder Lisa didn’t fall in love with him right then and there for his outstanding mental prowess!

Everyone is way excited about the fashion show. Well, Slater is mostly excited about seeing “hot women.” And Jessie is just excited because Slater said “women” instead of “chick” or “babe.” Screech is excited because Jessie’s adam’s apple sticks out when she gets excited. And I’m excited because we’ve just found out Jessie’s big secret: She’s really a man! She (or should I say “he”) doesn’t even bother to point out to Screech that women don’t have adam’s apples; she just looks away nervously. The gang doesn’t seem to notice this momentous piece of information…but I am on to you, Spano! This explains so much.

Anyway. Back to the fashion show. Zack is dividing up tasks for everyone. Kelly and Jessie are assigned to sewing. Naturally Jessie takes issue with this and asks why the men can’t do the sewing. Jessie, stop trying to foil us with your pseudo-feminist politics. We all know. Zack explains that those who have decided to keep their Y chromosome will be in charge of setting up the stage and interviewing the models. Which is to say, they’re going to pretty much do nothing, since the stage consists of a platform and some gold streamers, and the models consist of Zack, Slater, Kelly and Jessie.

Woooooo! Also, I think I just saw the image of a tiger emerge from Zack’s shirt.

Later, Lisa is at some unspecified location, working on her designs. I guess this is supposed to be her bedroom, but it doesn’t look like her bedroom as we’ve seen it before. Where’s the poster of the hunky exercise guy that she imagined had Screech’s head? Also, there doesn’t appear to be a bed anywhere, just one of those huge slanted art tables. So let’s just say this is her “atelier.” Personally, I’ve always wanted my own atelier, so I’m a little jealous.

Anyway, Zack comes out of…where? The bathroom? The closet? I think we’ve got enough LGBT issues to deal with in this episode already, so we’ll stick with bathroom. He’s wearing one of Lisa’s designs, which is an iridescent brown suit and quite possibly the most dizzying geometrically patterned shirt he’s ever worn—that’s quite a feat. Good job, Lisa! Lisa is obviously disoriented by the shirt (which, seriously, looks like one of those posters that when you stare at it for a long time, a 3-D picture pops out) because she kisses Zack. It’s not that long of a kiss, but it is still long enough for the studio audience to get in a fair amount of “woooo”ing.

I have some concerns.

The next day, Lisa tells Jessie about the kiss as Jessie is busy sewing various things to herself, including a zipper to her thumb. Perhaps I have a low threshold for pain, but it seems to me that this would warrant more yelping than just one quick “Ouch!” Maybe Jessie is still under anesthesia from her sex-change operation. Anyway, Kelly comes waddling in wearing a dress that she’s stuck in because, she claims, Jessie sewed it incorrectly. To me, the fact that she’s stuck in the dress appears to be not so much Jessie’s fault as it is Kelly’s, because she has blatantly refused to put her arm through the armhole. And it’s also Lisa’s fault because she designed this dress with a red-rose patterned bodice and a black-and-white flowered pattern for the sleeves. The dress was probably provoked to attack Kelly because it was ashamed that it was so ugly.

Finally, it is time for the fashion show at the Max. Maybe I’m wrong, but a greasy hamburger joint doesn’t seem like the best setting for a fashion show. Anyway, the gang is “backstage” in the kitchen, wearing outfits that look pretty good, but only because they’re not as ugly as the patterned terrycloth robes that are being worn over them. Before the fashion show can begin, however, Lisa and Zack have to talk about their kiss and of course, make out a little more. This time, the kissing lasts for so long that the audience gets through an entire cycle of “woooo” with nowhere else to go. Good thing Screech walks in and sees them kissing just as he’s about to give Lisa flowers because then the audience can pick up with “awwww” once he gets hurt and storms out.

During the actual fashion show, Screech gets a little creative with the fashion commentary, using details such as “the finest Italian leather” and “100% Belgian wool” to segue into bitter diatribes against Lisa and Zack. After he stomps off, Mr. Belding takes over, but the best he can come up with is that Zack is wearing really long pants. Lisa is devastated because she’s sure the recruiter is going to reject her from the Fashion Institute on the grounds that her clothes were described badly. However, the recruiter is from a land far, far away from Bayside called The Planet Where Things Actually Make Sense (either that, or she was hypnotized by Zack’s shirt), and she says that she liked Lisa’s designs, so she has a spot at the Fashion Institute.

You do not want to mess with Screech (especially if your clothes are Velcro-ed on).

Screech confronts Zack in the hall and says he wants to fight him by the willow trees. When Zack points out that there are no willow trees, Screech changes the location of the fight to the oak trees. Finally, we’re going to get to see these mysterious oak trees! Or, actually not because as soon as school is out, Screech starts using his mystical ninja fighting powers (which is to say, he makes a lot of squealing noises and un-velcroes Zack’s supposedly button-down shirt) right there in the hall.

Fearing that Screech might un-velcro more of his clothes, Zack offers to stop seeing Lisa. It is at this point that Lisa steps in and tells Screech that he’s just going to have to get over his 10-year crush on her because she wants to indulge this little fling that started with Zack 20 minutes ago and is set to end in about 30 seconds. Zack and Lisa walk of hand-in-hand to deposit their relationship in the Bermuda Triangle of SBTB Guest Stars, a blissful paradise where the relationship can sip piña coladas with Laura the homeless girl, take a dip with Mr. Spano and the Aerobics Bimbo, and play shuffleboard with Denise Richards.

Quote of the episode
Zack: “We’ll be busy building the stage, putting up the lights, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.”
Slater: “Whoa, preppy, I don’t like that third et cetera.”
Zack: “That’s where we interview the models.”
Slater: “Et cetera.”

Grade: A-
First of all, there’s Slater’s memorable “et cetera”, another oft-quoted favorite of the SBTBP/AS. Second, there’s Screech’s fighting style, which inspired us to create the “Screech Salute.” (If you don’t know, don’t ask.) Finally, there’s the truth about Jessie’s past life as a man! And did I mention that Zack and Lisa hook up? All together now: “Woooooooo!”

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