Saved by the Bell Season 4, Episode 2: “Student Teacher Week”

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We open at a school assembly where Jessie has a throw away gag about a ventriloquist dummy dying that has absolutely nothing to do with the rest of the episode but which Zack Morris and Slater think is hilarious. Zack Morris and Slater, for some reason, announce that Slater, as star quarterback, is going to single-handed beat Valley Friday in the city championship because this episode will need some conflict in a minute. It’s nice that they just began their senior year last week and they’re already having a football championship. Finally, Mr. Belding announces that he has picked students to become teachers for Student Teacher Week based on essays the students wrote. Most of the names don’t matter because they’re not in the opening credits, but the ones we’re supposed to care about are Screech and Lisa as gym teachers and Kelly as a history teacher.

Since Zack Morris smarted off in his essay about how Mr. Belding never does anything as principal, he gets to be principal for the week because nothing can possibly go wrong with Zack Morris in charge!
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At The Max, Screech has delusions that he is going to be a good gym teacher. Kelly says she wants to see if she’d make a good teacher since it’s becoming increasingly evident that housewife job she aspires to may not work out. And Zack Morris, of course, wants to abuse his position to look at naked women in the locker room.vlcsnap-2015-02-20-14h27m26s184

The next day before history class, Slater goes over plays with some other football players. It’s nice to see that they let Scud, the smoking punk from “No Hope With Dope”, on the football team. It will be good for him to be a part of a team sport. Wait…that’s not Scud you say? That’s Ox? Well, he is a lot dumber than Scud. Maybe Scud got hit on the head and he’s now Ox? I think Ox may be the template for Tommy D’s idiocy later. vlcsnap-2015-02-20-14h28m26s23

Kelly comes in to teach class and it’s clear right away that the students think she’s going to act like any other student with this sort of authority would: by abusing it. She tells them to shut the fuck up and get ready to cover both World Wars in one day. Man, that must be some crash history course. There’s a test tomorrow, which upsets Slater and the football players since they want to practice, but Kelly says she’s following the regular teacher’s lesson plans, so wouldn’t they know about the test well in advance?vlcsnap-2015-02-20-14h30m03s225

Zack Morris, meanwhile, uses his authority as principal to ask out a couple really dumb and clueless girls. Boy, this school is going to have so many law suits by the end of the week!vlcsnap-2015-02-20-14h31m29s66

Mr. Belding, meanwhile, plays Zack Morris and the real Zack Morris tells him he has detention for being out of class without a hall pass. This is the part that doesn’t make any sense. I get the whole student teacher exchange thing. But shouldn’t the real teachers be supervising them to ensure they don’t do anything like abuse their authority or burn the school down? That’s liability waiting to happen!

Slater comes in and convinces Zack Morris to get Kelly to cancel her test. He’s all, “Sure because I’m predictably irresponsible!”vlcsnap-2015-02-20-14h32m58s181

Kelly comes in and Zack Morris convinces her to go along with his “no test” policy. Kelly suddenly forgets everything she knows about Zack Morris and believes that he’s really doing it because he cares about the students and doesn’t want to see them stressed out. Boy, Kelly, I have some oceanfront property in Arizona for you if you buy that one.vlcsnap-2015-02-20-14h33m42s101 In gym, Screcch is predictably condescending to a bunch of nerds. Funny thing is that every single one of them looks more athletic than Screech.

Kelly comes in and tells Slater and Ox there won’t be a test tomorrow. Slater lets out that he convinced Zack Morris to cancel the test so she’s all, “Oh yeah! Well, you’re taking it anyway!”vlcsnap-2015-02-20-14h36m12s75

In history class, none of the football players show up for Kelly’s test. The rest of the class bails when they realize the football players aren’t coming. Kelly feels like a failure and commiserates with Mr. Belding, who’s busy skipping detention. Mr. Belding tells Kelly that part of being a teacher is remaining in control of her class so, yes, she is a failure with a capital “F.” Uh, what should she do: tie them up and force them to take the test or watch episodes of The New Class as punishment?
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In the principal’s office, Slater and Kelly come in fighting over the test. Zack Morris takes Slater’s side, saying Kelly violated the no test policy. Kelly’s all, “You’re all a bunch of dumb fucks and are acting exactly like anyone would expect you to act by not taking this seriously!” Zack Morris uses the old defense of “Come on!” and Kelly is like, “I guess you’re the stupid, immature asshole I should have always thought you were!” She leaves, telling Zack Morris to do the right thing.
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Zack Morris calls Mr. Belding to the office and tells him he’s quitting because he doesn’t want to have to choose between friends. Mr. Belding is all, “Being principal isn’t about friends. It’s about doing what’s right, which is why Screech is so incompetent he should never be my administrative assistant!” Mr. Belding tells Zack Morris he can’t quit until he’s learned responsibility because he’s determined not to end this charade until Zack Morris’s blood is spilled on the carpet.
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The pep rally which is, of course, being held at The Max, features the cheerleaders doing one of their usual lame cheers. Also, after a two season absence, I guess Jessie is now a cheerleader again.
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Zack Morris comes in and tells them he’s suspending Slater and the rest of the football players who cut the test. The rest of the class get no consequences because they don’t matter to the plot.

Back at Bayside, Kelly tells Zack Morris she admires him for doing the right thing. He tells her that the football players want to start an insurrection and he’s now the most hated person in the school. I’m pretty sure Screech is still more hated.vlcsnap-2015-02-20-14h42m28s245

Slater and the football players come in with a lynch mob ready to murder Zack Morris. See, this is exactly why there needs to be adult supervision of this shit! Ox and Bull, another football player, threaten to break Zack Morris’s neck but he just threatens to call their moms and that’s that since all thugs are easily calmed down through threat of calling their parents.

Slater tells Zack Morris that he turned on them and Zack Morris is all, “No, you’re all idiots even though I’m just as much of an idiot because I initially went along with your stupid plan! You took advantage of Kelly just like I did and you weren’t a good friend, just like I wasn’t!” Slater tells the mob Zack Morris is right. He apologizes to Kelly and this is enough to disperse the mob. Man, this is an easily influenced mob!
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Zack Morris and Slater make up and Kelly says she wishes she could have given her first test because that would be so super awesome! Zack Morris comes up with a plan: have the football players take the make-up test during the first half of the game.
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And so, they do it as Screech comes in randomly to spout random factoids about the Worlds Wars. Kelly threatens to murder him if he doesn’t stay the fuck, which I believe means every single member of the gang has now threatened to murder him.
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The football players all pass the test despite Ox being dumber than a box of rocks and they go to play the game. Zack Morris monologues about how the game went.vlcsnap-2015-02-20-14h45m57s31

We get some horribly shot stock footage that’s supposed to be Slater making touchdowns. Bayside comes back from a twenty-one point deficit to win the game 28-21 because the moral of this episode is that, even if you do horrible things, you’ll still win in the end.vlcsnap-2015-02-20-14h46m18s247And our episode ends with Zack Morris smug that he managed to pull off a week as principal, and may we never have to hear the name “Zack Morris” associated with the title “Principal” again. Unfortunately, there are worse people on this show to be principal, as we’ll see later in The New Class.

Firsts: Ox.

9 responses to “Saved by the Bell Season 4, Episode 2: “Student Teacher Week”

  1. And they also did the crappy stock football video back in season one. I think it was “Cream for a Day”

  2. I was quite disappointed my school never did anything like this.

  3. This is another episode the New Class rips off which you’ll be getting to in s few weeks or so.

  4. I always loved this episode as a kid but of course the entire show makes zero sense as an adult. I love that Slater is the only one that gets the credit for the football team in the beginning assembly. I guess this was in the age before participation trophies were handed out.

    As always, love the commentary!

  5. The question is…is there any New Class episodes that had an original plot? The one where Rachel tutors the dyslexic football player is the only one I can think of.

  6. ILovedKellyKapowski

    Did Kelly actually teach anything in History class? If she did, how did she know the material to teach the class? Did she read ahead 1 chapter the night before?

  7. Jessie didn’t want to take the test alone because of the grading curve? Wouldn’t the rest of the class get zero for refusing to take the test? All she would need then is one right answer to get an A.

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