Scott says that everyone loves being in band because they're a group of kids who love making music and they've built a family around that fact. Yeah, a family of geeks. Dammit. There I go again. Pigeonholing a group of people based on my distant high-school biases. Bad me. Especially bad considering that I once played the flute in band. Shut up. No. I mean it. SHUT UP.
Then the kids from Fame are on the band bus and their band teacher tells them that the trip to China is still on. China? They're going to China? The hell? I went to fucking Bloomington with the theatre group. That's it. BLOOMINGTON. As in ILLINOIS. What a rip-off. I should have transferred to HPHS. Cheap Lake Forest bastards.
Kaytee's all excited about the trip. "I'm goin' to China with my band friends!" she crows. "I'm gonna...read books on the plane and...see the Great Wall!" In that order.
Scott explains that their band leader, Dr. Hiles, has been putting his heart and soul into this band trip, which is why he's been a mite cranky of late. "This is basically his life right now," says Scott. Dr. Hiles looks kind of like a football coach gone wrong. He says in an interview that there's something about being in the band group that the kids see as being very special. "It's the striving for the perfection that I think those kids feel," he says while driving his reasonably priced car down a desolate highway. "At least, I hope they do." Yeah. Dr. Hiles is counting on this China trip. He's counting on it to give him meaning in his life. His sad little life. Wow. I am rife with bitterness tonight, aren't I?
And now on to the part of the show that makes me want to claw at the screen until my fingers are just bloody stubs.
"The Group of 21," says Abalone, "we're probably known as one of the more popular groups." She says this in a voice-over while sitting at a table with six other girls who not only have the exact same haircut as Abalone, but also the same hair color, the same makeup, AND the same outfits on. Sandy blunt-cut blonde hair, frosted lipstick, pale eye shadow, black t-shirt, black pants, black coats. Which one's Abalone? Which one of us cares? Not me, that's for sure.
Shanna's up, telling us that she likes to know that she has these friends that she's shared a good portion of her life with. "Abby's, like, my best friend," Shanna says. "We get along so well...it's, like, we just fit." Then Abalone's going on about how there are some friends from high school that you know you won't stay friends with, but that she and Shanna will still keep in touch. Fast forward three years to when Shanna's actually getting somewhere in college and Abalone's still whining about how Brad got into college before her and considering her major. FOR THE EIGHTH TIME.