Saturday, March 21, 2015

Happy Days S8 E2: Live and Learn

Originally aired on November 18, 1980
Written by Fred Fox Jr.

A television milestone

This episode was the one that was originally supposed to air as the first episode of the season. And, it makes more sense because the Fonz is returning from a 3 week vacation in Italy and school is about to start up. I'm guessing that the opening scene from No Tell Motel, where we learn what happened to Richie and Ralph, may have been moved from this one. This is the episode that firmly establishes The Fonz as the lead star of the show. In fact, the other leads don't do much. Joanie and Chachi reaffirm that they're still in love. Marion's mom is in town but we never see her. Howard gives out some advice. Potsie and Al sells Fonzie's beard.

Oh, Fonzie has a beard throughout the episode. It's a good beard. Full and powerful. Apparently, he didn't know the Italian for "razor" so he couldn't shave.

Better not be laughing at Fonzie's beard

This is the episode where Fonz begins teaching the Shop class at the local high school. So, he runs the auto repair garage, co-manages Arnold's and now he's a teacher. He's a rebel but he makes a good living. The first days of his class are the focus of the episode. (To the point where there's very little about gals in it. But, don't worry the Fonz still loves them and they love him.) It turns out that the Fonz isn't such a good teacher. At first. He relies too much on the way he was taught: which was being thrown in and learning on the spot. The entire class ends up in the corner when they can't replace a carburetor. Luckily, Mr. C. is there to guide the Fonz. And, the second day of the class goes well.

Mr. The Fonz

Personally, I relate to the Fonz and the students in this one. There is a tendency, when you are very knowledgeable of something and you have to teach it, to speed through things and act as if the people trying to learn just aren't getting it. But, I know the way I learn. When it comes to something like shop class, I need step-by-step. I write it down. And then, I follow my notes closely and learn it. So, the Fonz's enthusiasm is awesome but he's not teaching very well.

1) Teaching
2)In The Corner

He does expect an apple on the first day and gets disappointed. He also meets Eugene Belvin, who becomes the nerd of the show. And, he meets that other guy with the perm/ frizzy hair whose name I never remember but he keeps showing up. The new wave of characters are slowly pouring in. (No sign of Jenny Piccolo, though.)

Eugene and that guy

Happy Days is still funny throughout, although the Nerd bit gets a bit overplayed. But, it was 1980 and the world was just beginning to discover the comic possibilities of "The Nerd." Watch it all develop here! The main thrust of the episode is the teaching. The whole thing revolves around that and it's a fine re-molding of the show. The Fonz is still cool but he's teaching now and that's cooler.

Dispensing wisdom and making juice

Enjoy the light at the top of the set

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