The College Years Episode 3: “Zack, Lies, & Videotape”

In our cold opening, it seems that, despite having different majors, the gang are all taking a Cultural Anthropology class. This, despite the fact it directly contradicts last week’s episode when Zack Morris signed up for a bunch of other classes because he thought Leslie was taking them. It’s also the first day of class again since the classes in the first episode don’t count now that Danielle is dead and we’re already forgetting the Mandarin class last week. It’s like Saved by the Bell never bothers to remember silly things like what happens from episode to episode.


Anyway, Zack Morris starts talking shit with a random student sitting in front of him because how dare class expect him to get up at 8:00 am and do stupid shit like learn. The student offers to sell Zack Morris a copy of this stupid new professor’s midterm for twenty dollars and, Zack Morris, being a complete dumb ass when the situation calls for it, believes him and buys it, despite the fact it’s the first day so how did he get a copy of the midterm?


Naturally the student turns out to be Professor Jeremiah Lasky, and his lack of professional ethics and boundaries in his first minute and a half on screen should be a sign of things to come, but you know, adults in this franchise never have proper boundaries.


The girls’ lady boners all go ding for Professor Lasky because we need Zack Morris to instantly hate him anymore so whatever.


After the credits, Professor Lasky’s still laying it on hot and heavy with the girls, telling them they’re going to study the mating rituals of the Tehanbuli tribe of New Guinea and how they like to be polyamorous and shit. To demonstrate, he asks the girls to marry him and all three get excited about more boundary issues to follow.

What I can’t figure out is if the Tehanbuli are a real tribe or not. Google gives me one result for the way Professor Lasky spells it. It’s just as likely that the writers made it up to fuck with me and some blogger misspelled something.  In any case, Professor Lasky tells Kelly she’ll never need to remember this for exams or quizzes or anything because why test on what you just said you’ll be learning.

Also, Professor Lasky’s lecture style is the most fucked up, all over the place method I’ve ever seen. He goes from definitions of anthropology to randomly talking about Margaret Meade. Actually, I had a professor like him once. He was in his seventies, half senile, and needed to retire. So, now I know where my professor was in the early nineties.

Professor Lasky’s first assignment for the class is to buy his book because there’s no conflict of interest in that at all. Zack Morris asks if he can have his money back if he has to buy Professor Lasky’s book and the walking ethics violation gives Zack Morris five dollars and tells him to buy it used.


In the student union, the girls can’t wait to fuck Professor Lasky’s brains out while Zack Morris wants him to be Screech’s next victim. In our random subplots of the week that we’ll barely talk about, Slater needs to gain six pounds by Friday so he can get into a higher weight class in wrestling while Alex needs to lose two pounds due to apparent theater related anorexia. How excited.vlcsnap-2015-09-06-20h10m57s306

Speaking of subplots, in the boys’ room, Slater tells Screech that Mr. Rogers or Mike or whatever the hell we’re calling him this week is looking for Screech. Screech hides, thinking our residential adviser wants to avenge a shrunken shirt. Slater, hoping Screech will die or some shit, immediately points out where Screech is.


But, no, Mr. Rogers/Mike wants Screech to help him type his memoirs. Seems he has a book deal but his hands are too big to type with because that’s a thing and not just something the writers made to give him something to do this week. Screech agrees to be his editor if he’ll help Screech bulk up with weight lifting and shit so that more women will inexplicably hit on him.


Back in class, Professor Lasky has Zack Morris and Leslie participate in an experiment where Zack Morris has to get Leslie to go out with him but he can’t speak. Naturally, since Leslie is now back in “I hate Zack Morris mode” she wants nothing to do with him for now and so, Zack Morris storms back to his seat, declaring this experiment to be stupider than the new class that’s replaced him back at Bayside. Professor Lasky tells Zack Morris to see him in his office at 5:00 so he can give him spankings.


No, no that would be too exciting. We find out that Professor Lasky apparently quite literally lives out of his office because that makes it easier to engage in ethics violations. Lasky tells Zack Morris that he sucks ass at courting women despite only knowing him for two days and despite the fact that, with the exception of Punky Brewster, women seem to fall all over Zack Morris quite instantly and without logic. The good professor tells Zack Morris that, if he applied himself, he might learn something in his class so he tells Zack Morris that, if Zack Morris does a field study about what women want and comes up with a scientific conclusion, Lasky will give Zack Morris a B so he doesn’t have to come to class anymore. After all, he’s already in deep with stuff that will keep him from making tenure so why not keep it up? Zack Morris agrees, not realizing the episode is still only about halfway through, giving him plenty of time to learn a lesson.


At the student union, we check in on the stupid weight loss/weight gain subplot as Alex screams about how Slater’s eating like a pig but can only gain one pound. How exciting, but not as exciting as air conditioning repair.


Zack Morris tries video taping women for his project. Unfortunately, he picked the world’s largest dumb ass to be his cameraman and this scares the girl out, who already seemed to have no clue what she wanted, so she’s no good. Leslie tells Zack Morris he’s a dumb ass for hitting on women instead of taking Lasky’s project seriously. She stomps off so we can still have her as the Jessie like character and shit.


Mr. Rogers/Mike talks football shit with Screech but then reveals that he had trouble asking girls out. Screech refers to him as Mike, so I guess I will too. Mike didn’t have his first date until he was twenty. Screech makes fun of him for it and, when Mike picks him up and threatens to remove his stupid appendix through his stupid nose, Screech strikes that part and talks more football shit.


In the suite, Zack Morris records the girls talking about who they think is hot and sexy, including a guy from yet another class they apparently all share because I took every class in college with all my friends of different majors. He also gets jealous because they think Slater’s hotter than him since they’ve had a preview of things to come in about twenty years.


They realize Zack Morris is spying on them s they all start talking about how much they want to jump Zack Morris’s bone. Then Leslie dumps popcorn on Zack Morris’s head and they tell him how he’s a dumb ass and tell him he has no idea how to do scientific research for a project because he has a lesson he needs to learn.


After a commercial break, Mike talks more football shit and, I never thought I would agree with Screech, but I think this subplot is fucking boring and needs to go away. Screech suggests that, rather than more football shit, Mike should talk about the personal stuff because it would inspire losers to think other things are losers. Mike instantly agrees with him because plot and this stupid subplot is finally over.


But not before Mike has Screech lift weights. Alex comes in to tell Mike that a parent is on the phone for him and Mike leaves Screech without a spotter to hopefully die. But, wait! Alex calls him Mr. Rogers! Should I call him Mr. Rogers or Mike?!?! I’ve never been so confused by what to call a character in my life! It’s like the writers had no clue whether they wanted Mike to be a Mr. Belding character or a useless Max character.


In the suite, Kelly convinces Zack Morris the reason he can’t get women to take him seriously is he tries to hit on them while he’s doing his studying. Zack Morris asks the girls about their ambitions and loosens them up enough to talk about what they want, enough to create a video tape. Also, we get some Kelly “boo hoo hoo I’m poor” shit while Leslie brags she’s rich and has a building named after her family. How profound.


Zack Morris and Professor Lasky watch the tape and Lasky’s impressed. Zack Morris’s highly scientific conclusion is that girls are just like boys: they all want different things. Jesus Christ, I’ve watched for the last twenty minutes and this is the stupid ass conclusion this episode comes to? In any case, it’s good enough for Professor Misconduct and he tells Zack Morris, true to his word, he has a B and doesn’t have to come to class.

In class, Slater now needs to lose weight because he needs to get back to his original weight class so he wears a sauna suit because the writers of this franchise are the only ones in the world who believe those things work. Thus ends our thrilling weight loss/weight gain subplot.


Zack Morris initially doesn’t look like he’s showing up for class, especially surprising given Professor Lasky told him he didn’t have to come anymore. He comes in anyway, though, saying he’s decided he wants an A and will hopefully learn some more shit over the next season. And our episode ends with Zack Morris using Professor Lasky’s book to balance a wobbly chair because we need some closure that Zack Morris will never truly change unless it’s convenient to the plot.

So, about the episode title, where were the lies? We saw the Zack and the videotape, but do the writers of this show really believe that acting like a douche is equivalent to lying? I mean, I know they were going for a clever reference to Sex, Lies, & Videotapes, but, if a reference doesn’t fit, like this one, it just looks fucking stupid.

vlcsnap-2015-09-06-20h28m24s975During the credits, they tease me more with the possibility of the weight destroying Screech’s esophagus but, like all good things, the possibility of Screech’s death must come to an end as Bob Golic, out of character and laughing at the pain he’s inflicting on Dustin Diamond, comes in and lifts the weight off him. Oh, Bob Golic, you’ll never know how close you came to preventing six seasons of misery for me.

Firsts: Professor Jeremiah Lasky, Lasky’s ethics violations, Mike as the imperfect jock, the Cultural Anthropology class.

6 responses to “The College Years Episode 3: “Zack, Lies, & Videotape”

  1. Haha I love how Lasky teaches in a blazer, t-shirt, jeans, and hiking boots. Hot stuff.

  2. Interesting that Patrick Fabian played pretty much played the same role on Veronica Mars as he did on TCY. Just a little more sleezy with better hair. And my guess is Professor Jeremiah Lasky met the same demise as Fabian’s other Professor character on VM.

  3. LOL at Zack being all ’90s in his backwards cap.

  4. ILovedKellyKapowski

    “What women want?” is not even a valid scientific question. It’s more in the range of “What’s the meaning of life?” or “Why is there evil in the world?”.

    I would like to see Professor Lasky’s PhD credential, and find out which diploma mill he got his degree from.

    Sadly, his lack of teaching ability is another thing on this show that’s closer to reality than the writers ever intended. When I was in a 4-year college, 90% of the professors couldn’t teach worth a shit, because having a teaching credential is obviously not a requirement to getting a job teaching college classes! (Fortunately for me, I attended community college first, and the teachers there DID have teaching credentials, and most were excellent teachers. And I saved a bundle.)

  5. I always felt like it added to the show when Kelly’s “lady boner” was going “ding”, as you put it. The men that caused it tended to annoy me, Lasky being no exception, but it it was nice just to know she those type of feelings.

  6. Sadly, professors requiring students to buy their book is an all too common event. Fortunately, some schools have rules about it. When I was an undergrad, professors had to donate any royalties to their own books when they were assigned to a student fund, but most don’t have a policy like that, so this was actually a realistic point in the episode.

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