We open in the hallway to find that, of all the things The New Class could have chosen to remember from last episode, it’s the stupid Smashing Pumpkins concert as Liz randomly tells Nicky how great it was to go. No, I’m not saying Smashing Pumpkins are stupid. I’m saying the writers are stupid for deciding that Liz is a Smashing Pumpkins fan.
Naturally, Ryan’s all jealous and shit over Liz having a good time listening to Billy Corgan’s nasily singing and vows to get Liz in the end after berating Nicky for being out late fucking.
Meanwhile Maria’s decided to be a pushy asshole and force Katie to throw her a “surprise” birthday party at Katie’s house.
Eric hopes he’s having a hallucination but, no, Screech is fucking dancing through the hallway in his caricature of ballet. All this is so, in the hallway, Mr. Belding, in typical The New Class fashion, can just randomly announce a new ballet class. The writers apparently forgot that Bayside already has a ballet class, but that was two seasons ago and who can remember shit that was a major part of a plot?
Because gender roles on this show are akin to, “Haha you’re a girl!” the girls want to take ballet but the boys are like, “Eww, no!” No one can ever accuse The New Class of doing a show on breaking gender stereotypes. Well, it was a few years before Billy Elliott so maybe they’re still banking on milking that stereotype for a few more years.
At The Max, Ryan tries to have lunch with Liz, but Nicky keeps butting in with stupid shit just to be an ass.
Also, Maria micromanages Katie’s planning of the party with lots of demands that are never really explained so we really have no idea what was so offensive. This is the problem with this subplot: the writers want us to think Maria’s pushy but, other than this long, unspecified list and demanding the party be at Katie’s house, we don’t see her doing anything that’s terribly offensive. We’re just supposed to take Katie’s word for it, and that creates no emotional investment in this shit. For all we know, Maria could just be handing Katie a dot matrix print out of a really long grocery list.
Maria also gives Katie a guest list that includes Screech, who’s excited to go hang out with his underage high school students. Maria suddenly worries, though, that Screech will invite Mr. Belding and she suddenly doesn’t want to hang out with her principal, even though she’s been to multiple parties and get togethers with him since she joined the show, including last season when Mr. Belding was invited to the gang’s Christmas party. But now it’s convenient to the plot so the plot so the writers decided that most teenagers probably wouldn’t hang out with their principal after all.
Of course, Screech, confused by these mixed messages, immediately goes back to Bayside and invites Mr. Belding, telling him the kids will need his rad Twister skills or some shit, which I’m pretty sure is pushing more than a few boundaries.
In the hallway, both Ryan and Nicky both want Liz to pick them to go out this weekend. She says she doesn’t know what her weekend’s like and promises to call them tonight so they have some more time for conflict. Liz tells Maria and Katie she feels like a cheap plot device going out with two brothers and like she’s coming between them. Maria tells her fuck that noise and she should just have mad sex with both of them as often as possible.
Screech reveals to Katie that he’s invited Mr. Belding and Katie’s all, “I can’t believe you didn’t get our unspoken message that completely contradicts everything we’ve ever done before. You need to uninvite Mr. Belding!”
In Ryan and Nicky’s room, the two obsess over the telephone waiting for Liz to call. They end up getting into a wrestling match over a wrong number as Eric randomly walks in and tells them he was just being a peeping tom when he saw them being insane. They decide that Liz is coming between them and that the reasonable solution is that neither of them date Liz, which actually does sound quite reasonable except that this is The New Class where that will never work. Eric tells them not liking a person isn’t that easy but they’re determined to make it work.
Back at school, Liz is confused that Ryan and Nicky neither want to go out with her suddenly and Maria tells her men are insane, especially if they go to this school.
Her suspicion that stupid shit is going on is confirmed when both Nicky and Ryan would rather shave than go out with her.
Also, practices her surprised face, which is supposed to be annoying I guess.
At The Max, Ryan decides to eat lunch with Liz, and this pisses off Nicky since I guess eating at the same table is akin to fucking your brains out at this school.
Katie gets sick of the demands Maria’s placed on her that the producers positively refuse to let us see, and she tells Maria she’s not going to throw the surprise party for her. As such, Maria decides it’s time to transfer her psuedo-pushiness to Eric and have him host the party since he doesn’t have a subplot this episode.
Back at Bayside, Nicky joins the ballet class so he can be close to Liz. Ryan walks by randomly and sees them and repeats the same question over and over again as he tries to find a way to make it clear to the audience that he’s displeased Nicky and Liz are in the same class.
Also, Screech signs Mr. Belding up for the class, hoping to wear him out so he won’t want to come to Maria’s party. It turns out Mr. Belding likes ballet, though, and, despite Screech once trying to be a ballet adviser, he doesn’t have the stamina for it.
At the party, Eric tells Katie that Maria has been treating him with the same nonspecific assholishness that she previously treated Katie. Screech arrives and says he stole Mr. Belding’s distributor cap to keep him from coming to the party.
Ryan shows up with Liz and Nicky gets pissed off even though they’ve both been obsessed with her and shit. Maria shows up right before Mr. Belding, who took a taxi to get to the party because he didn’t want to miss his student’s party.
Back at Bayside, Liz tells Ryan and Nicky she’s sick of this fucking crap and, until they get their act together within the next four minutes, she’s not dating either of them.
Maria apologizes to Eric and Katie for her unspecified assholishness. Seems her birthday sucks even though the only parts of it we saw were Ryan and Nicky fighting and Mr. Belding showing up. What more can I expect out of this show that’s never bothered to learn how to show and not tell, a writing skill often learned in elementary school creative writing.
In his office, Mr. Belding practices his ballet moves when Screech walks in. In short order, Screech reveals he stole Mr. Belding’s distributor cap to keep him from the party, and Mr. Belding tells Screech that he should have trusted him as he doesn’t need to go to his students’ events and parties even though he always has in the past. And thus ends one stupid subplot.
In the hallway, Ryan defends Nicky from two psudeo-bullies who are taunting him with the equivalent of, “You’re a girly boy!” Also, the only thing they know about ballet is Peter Pan, which isn’t actually a ballet but a musical. Great research there, guys. Turns out he can’t drop ballet because the rules are suddenly tighter since it matters to this small part of the script.
At The Max, Maria gets another surprise party because she learned her lesson and shit from the unseen sucky one. Ryan and Nicky make up for acting like assholes and decide that, no matter what happens with Liz, they have to remember they’re brothers so they’re going to turn their assholishness off since it’s no longer convenient to the plot.
And our episode ends with Liz telling Katie she’s going to start dating them both again for shits and giggles now that everything’s all different and stuff, but that she’s beginning to like one of them more than the other. She’s not going to reveal which one, of course, because we have to drag out this lame plot one more episode I guess. I guess the writers were hoping against hope that there would be “Team Ryan” and “Team Nicky” camps among the fandom, declaring their allegiance to the one they thought should get with Liz. The writers didn’t count on no one giving a shit about this show.
On a positive note, we’re finally halfway through this season. It seems like this fucking season has just dragged on and on, and I’m still trying to keep in perspective that I have ten months of this shit left. Oh god.