I am clearly not the right kind of geek to get all of the references in this episode, so if you're here for the references, I'll just assume it's what forum poster kennyab said: “the bastard child of The Last Starfighter and War Games." Or something like that. Myself? I kept thinking of The King of Kong. What can I say? I'm more documentary nerd than sci-fi/gamer nerd, apparently.
Anyway, whether you like this episode probably depends on how much you like Nerd Herder Jeff, who takes center stage for a big portion of it. Me? I think he's better tertiary. But the episode also includes Sarah and Casey dressed up as Nerd Herders, Anna in a hula skirt (awesome!), Buster Bluth (who was also on Samantha Who? over on ABC later in the night), Sarah and Ellie having an awkward heart to heart, and -- best of all -- Casey and Sarah using their powers for good to get Chuck the degree from Stanford that Bryce cheated (or protected?) him out of so long ago. In other words, it has plenty of good to make up for the Jeff centrality.
Jeff ultimately fails anyway (at playing a videogame), and fellow big dorky gamer Chuck steps in -- with the help of Rush's "Tom Sawyer" -- and ends up saving the day and stopping the crazy scary satellite of doom. (How is it, by the way, that these episode title keeps fooling me? Last week, I thought "Cougars" would mean hot older women, and this week, I assumed Tom Sawyer would mean the book. Are they doing this on purpose just to throw us off?)
Oh, and when Chuck calls Ellie to sort of say goodbye to her, with an apology and love and all that, she immediately assumes he's on drugs. And Awesome agrees that would explain a lot. But the Stanford degree convinces them otherwise, making it a doubly wonderful deed Sarah (and Casey) did for him. You might even shed a tear. And then you'll keep crying at how annoying it is that Sarah and Chuck don't just GET TOGETHER ALREADY!
No time to worry about that, though, because the next episode (in two weeks) features Jill.
We open on boobs, and then zoom up to an unfortunately mulleted Jeff, sandwiched by two bikini-clad girls. He's being congratulated by an old announcer he refers to as "Stu." It's probably someone I should recognized, but even on a second viewing, I don't get any of the references in this episode. Stu is congratulating Jeff for being the world champion of "Missile Command," the videogame, and asks him what he'll do next. Jeff looks down at the set of boobs on either side of him and says he doesn't know, because he has so many tasty options. Title cards take us to "25 Years Later" and Jeff -- hair no longer mulleted, but still unfortunate -- is standing in the backroom at the Buy More saying "So many tasty options." But this time he's looking at the backroom vending machine. Jeff actually believes this sad vending machine has too many tasty options and thus he can't decide, so Morgan comes up and chooses the Cheesy Snacks for him. Big Mike comes in and tells Morgan and Jeff to get back to a meeting on the sales floor, and also that Chuck's late.
Next thing we know, Chuck's alarm is going off, and he wakes up in a suit and pencil-thin moustache. Fun that we don't see every mission he goes on, I think. He quickly changes, but leaves on the moustache and walks out. Luckily, Ellie and Awesome don't look at him when Ellie asks if he's forgetting something. He realizes he did forget something: the moustache. He tears it off quickly, then turns around to face them and Awesome says Chuck almost forgot the most important meal of the day. Then Awesome gives him some of his green, wheatgrass-looking ginseng-protein shake, and Ellie asks why he was out until four in the morning. Chuck thinks the best lie is to include Morgan, saying the two of them had a "crazy night" of Grand Theft Auto. How he doesn't know that including Morgan and videogames is never the best option where Ellie is concerned is beyond me. Ellie and Awesome both start lecturing Chuck about how his life plan is not exactly going as planned, and that there should be some sort of forward movement. Ah, lectures. They go so well with breakfast.
Speaking of lectures, Mike's telling everyone at the Buy More that it's time for them to show some initiative, and he has just the guy to whip them into shape. He introduces them to none other than ... Buster Bluth! (But known here "efficiency expert" Emmett Milbarge). Buster wasn't exactly the initiative type, but I trust Tony Hale can act outside of the Buster range. Buster introduces himself by showing them he doesn't even care about them enough to know what city he's in (Morgan tells him: Burbank), and by telling them he'll be interviewing them all, evaluating them, and trying to trim the fat. Then he takes away Jeff's Cheesy Snacks and wads them up, just to be mean. Totally unnecessary.