Housing contractors first, guidance counselors now. You really have to respect how this show celebrates the daily contributions of the little people who make the world just a little more commonplace for the rest of us. Later this season, Ryan befriends a supermarket checkout guy for the tight, two-fisted thriller of Episode 211: "Paper Or Plastic." The guidance counselor tells Ryan she's taken the liberty of putting his schedule together, and compliments him on his sparkling GPA from the previous year. Yeah, grades do tend to inflate themselves when you're caught in an endless Groundhog's Day loop of the eleventh grade. If you thought my rendition of Mr. MacAfee in the Massapequa High School version of Bye Bye Birdie was good then, imagine if I had the past ten years to continue honing it. Miss Counselor asks Ryan if he sees anything missing from his schedule, and he tells her, basically, that as long as "Intro To Hauling Rocks With A Big Crane" isn't on it, he's pretty satisfied. When he mentions how happy he is not to be working a construction job, she thinks for a moment and suggests that perhaps he start thinking about college. He thanks her kindly but tells her he can't afford college, and that he's not allowed to let the Cohens pay for it (just like he wasn't going to live with them, wasn't going to let them pay for stuff, wasn't going to live with them again). Miss Counselor presses on and tells him what great test scores he has, and that he's smart enough to do anything he wants, because this is suddenly becoming the idealistic classic Good Ryan Atwood, and a bearded Robin Williams is lurking right outside of that door ready with a hug and a reason to make us all cry for five minutes and rekindle our belief in the good of the human spirit. For the love of god, Ryan. Don't open that door. Miss Counselor asks Ryan what he's interested in, and he tells her, "Seriously, I don't know." She tells him to come back tomorrow with a list of what he likes and doesn't like about each class. Likes: math. Dislikes: overbearing guidance counselor wildly overestimating her position in the educational food chain. Next week, a driver's ed instructor teaches Ryan an important lesson about religion and prayer in contemporary society.
Episode Report CardDjb: B | 358 USERS: C+
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