Episode 31: Full Metal Betsy


Just a few more days till the finale! In celebration, all women should wear Amanda-style form-fitting dresses to work. All guys should get George Clooney-type haircuts like Jake and stand around looking mopey.

The Matt Slot goes to ... Fashion Boy! He was mercifully removed from the continuum this week, making the episode that much better.

Jo, Matt, and Dr. Love:

Jo is about to head out for the day, when she sees a pale and sweaty Matt. He said he was going to do some jogging, but he doesn't feel well. Jo touches his forehead: "You're burning up!" "Yeah, I gotta get some rest -- these subplots have been keeping me busy all season! I'm not used to this exertion!" Jo looks at her hand: "Ewwww, sweaty!" Later, Jo and Dominick O'Malley a.k.a. Dr. Love (and isn't "Dominick O'Malley" such a "TV" name?) are about to head out for dinner, but Jo wants to check on Matt first. A robed Matt answers the door, looking even worse, and he promptly passes out. O'Malley tells Jo to call 911. The paramedics yell, "WHAT?!? Melrose Place again??"

At the hospital, O'Malley tells a bed-ridden Matt that they're awaiting the results of some tests -- Matt's trigonometry skills are a bit weak. In the meantime, "can you think of anything from the last few days that you may have come into contact with?" "Hmmm, my agent, the USA Network, I'm doing another interview for The Advocate..." "No, I mean medically." "Oh, well, I didn't want to mention this because you'd think I was incompetent, but I accidentally got stuck with the needle I was using on Sick Lad last week." "What?! You're incompetent!" O'Malley leaves the room, with an angry Jo behind him. She can't believe he was so insensitive to Matt. O'Malley says he has no patience for incompetence. (But he does have incompetent patients! Ha!) Jo says, "He wasn't been incompetent! He was being human!" "I don't have much patience for that, either." Yow! He tells her they need to find Sick Lad quickly.

O'Malley comes by Melrose later on to apologize to Jo, but she says, "My friend is sick, and the best you can do is yell at him!" "I'm not insensitive -- I'm just written that way."

Later, O'Malley tells Jo and Matt the good news: "We found Sick Lad." Bad news: "He's dead." He apparently had spinal meningitis, and O'Malley expects that will be Matt's diagnosis as well, but he thinks they've caught it early enough. "If all goes well and if major medical problems like cancer and strokes continue to be dealt with unrealistically on this show, Matt should make a full recovery by next week." He adds that Matt will one day make a fine doctor. (Yeah, yeah.) They will need to do a spinal tap first. Yummy!

Before Spinal Tap can finish the first encore of "Stonehenge," O'Malley is at Jo's door. He says Matt's going to be OK. However, it seems that Jo's complaining is slowly turning O'Malley into a compassionate, Alan Alda-like weenie. He tells her that he needed "time to think things through." He suddenly realizes that his unemotional Teflon coating was really an effort to protect himself, not his patients, "from the pain of life." Wow, really!? What can protect me from the pain of this dialogue? He adds, "But I'm beginning to think that, around you, it's not necessary." Jo lets him inside her apartment. Sayyyy....

Alison, Jake, and Billy:

Jake and Billy are sitting down for a breakfast of Eggo's. Jake somehow recalls that he make a pseudo-pass at Alison during his drunken stupor. Billy says, "Daaah, and Alison said she really just wants ta be friends with you?" Jake unenthusiastically tells him, "She still needs you." "Gee, gaah, that's great!" "Yeah. I guess so." Oh, wonderful. Now Jake is pining for Alison only a day or two after Jane told him to get lost. I can't wait till next season when Jake and Billy declare their undying love for each other.

At Shooter's (The Only Bar in Town), Jake sees Alison all dressed up. As he compliments her, she tells him that Billy asked her out to dinner. Jake's face sags a bit, then sags even further when Billy collects Alison and they leave. Jake, you boob! Get a face lift!

Alison and Billy go to the often-seen restaurant with the fake palm trees. Alison talks about life, the universe, and everything, plus the mystical significance of the number 42. Billy, sloshed on champagne, is easily distracted by the large number of D&D regulars he sees here. (We don't see their faces because that would inflate the budget.) He makes a slurred speech about how Alison would still be at D&D "if I hadn't screwed up. Gaaah!" Alison gets up and says, "This was a bad idea. Actually, it was a bad idea by the writers to break us up in the first place, but it's too late now!" Billy mentions that he and Jake talked about her. Alison Gapes! She walks out. He orders her to come back -- smart move, Chief.

Alison bangs on Jake's door the next morning: "I want you to stay out of my personal life, Jake Hanson! Don't try to set me up on a date again!" She leaves. Jake is amused. Jake, you've been such a ninny this year, you know that?

Amanda, Michael, Peter, Kimberly, Jane, and Sydney:

At the offices of Dumb & Dumber, Amanda is being questioned by the detective who's looking for the fugitive Dr. Richard Kimball -- I mean, The Bizarre Dr. Peter Burns. Amanda defends Peter, saying he's not on the run. As the cop leaves, Michael arrives with news that Kimberly has flown off to Hawaii this morning! He's now nearly convinced that either Peter or Don Ho has kidnapped and/or seduced Kimberly. Amanda tells him to shut up. They agree to continue searching.

Meanwhile, at Willowbridge, Kimberly/Betsy is doing her best drill sergeant impersonation. She summons all the residents together and promises to make an example of "Mr. Peters." "All of you like him, don't you? Even Nurse Benson -- our Special Cameo Appearance person -- I see her looking at him cow-eyed. That will stop." Peter, knowing he's in Big Trouble, feebly whispers to Nurse Benson and pleads for help: "Get me outta this Heartbreak Hotel, baby."

Jane, on a quest for the best in Revenge Fashions, sees that a boutique has replaced the sporting goods and weaponry store she expected to find. The woman who seems to be running the new place, Samantha Reilly, says they display "fashions for twentysomethings. But what you're wearing is totally hipper than anything we have on the racks." The poor child is blind! Samantha's worried that the owner of the property might force her to sell. Jane gives Samantha her card, and says she might be able to help eventually. Hah? Wow, plotline from left field! And which business card does Jane give her: her garage card or the card that co-stars the guy she's planning to kill?

At the Burns-Mancini offices, a stressed-out Michael is trying to cope with the overload of patients that's developed in Peter's absence. Jane shows up, asking for some financial backing. Ha! "Ask Syd," he says. "She's been stockin' away her 10 percent. Hell, you could even blackmail her!" When Jane seems puzzled, he says, "Oh, like you haven't figured it out! Syd's the one who spiked your drink and nearly paralyzed you for life -- I gotta go!" Michael's great! Syd arrives at the office after seeing Bobby's body off on its flight to Florida. Jane icily walks past her. Syd says, "Michael, what was Jane doing here?" "Oh, well, she needed a favor and, uh, I told her about the pill thing ... ya know, that Christmas surprise..." Sydney is stunned!

Peter lies in bed, strapped down and attempting to meditate. "OM ... OM ... OM ..." Nurse Benson arrives with his medication. He politely asks for Flintstone vitamins instead of needles; she hesitates, then injects him, adding she'd try to get him pills for next time. The Bizarre One tries to sweet-talk her. "Humor me. Call me Peter. What's your name?" "Benson." "Benson Benson? That's odd." He then quietly requests a kiss, assuring her that he's still strapped down. He offers his cheek. As she bends down, he gets her in a liplock! "Hail to the King, baby!" Oooooh, he's suave! She's full of conflicting emotions.

Amanda tells Michael that she's checked the airlines and hotels: Kimberly is not in Hawaii. (Of course, they ignore the possibility that Kim could have checked in under one of her numerous personalities.) Later, the two go through Kim's recent records and transactions. Amanda calls the bank and, pretending to be Kim, learns that Kim recently made ATM withdrawals from a bank in Merton, a town near Sacramento. Amanda then uses Kim's checking account to order $500 worth of lingerie from Victoria's Secrets.

Nurse Benson returns to Peter; this time, she gives him pills to swallow. He smoothly convinces her to undo his straps, and he begins to put sedated moves on her, just like the King once did. She says she's a lonely, lonely woman, and the job just doesn't make her happy anymore. Peter says, "I can make you happy" and he starts to sing "Love Me Tender." They kiss again! He asks her to help him get out. "That's very dangerous," she says. "Good. Danger is good." The Bizarre One is going to make life exciting for Priscilla Presley once again! As she leaves, he spits out the pills he had been holding in his mouth. (Now, if he was really cool, he would have slipped them to Priscilla while they were kissing!)

Sydney goes to Jane's place and suggest that they talk about last Christmas. Jane agrees, but Syd sees that she's busy cleaning a shiny gun! She backs off: "Hoooo-kay! We'll talk another time when you're feeling more rational."

Amanda and Michael drive to the rinky-dink town of Merton, where all the women look like Tammy Faye Baker. They quickly learn that Kimberly is staying at a nearby motel. Shortly thereafter, they spot her. Michael wants to confront her, but Amanda talks him out of it until they can discover where Peter is. Michael conveniently learns from the motel operator that Kim is working at the Willowbridge mental hospital outside of town.

That night, Benson unstraps Peter and gives him the master key. She whispers, "Be careful. This may be our last chance!" Later that night, he sneaks out of his room, but he is spotted by his next-door neighbor, Willie, who begins to yell until Peter releases him as well! Willie, in turn, won't leave without his neighbor, Marko! D'OH! Peter has no choice, and the three do the Jailhouse Rock to the now-open front gate. A horrified Nurse Benson sees the trio arrive, and she begins to yell at Peter, who demands her car keys! "I trusted you!" she shouts, and she hits the alarm button. Orderlies grab Peter and the others. Just as Peter is dragged back inside, Amanda and Michael arrive! They see Benson at the gate. Michael says, "We're looking for Dr. Peter Burns. 6 foot, sandy hair, smug?" Amanda shows a photo, but Benson coldly says, "NO. He is not here." The two then drive off as a gagged Peter watches helplessly, and Kimberly jabs him with a needle in the neck! Ouch!

In the morning, Sgt. Kimberly calls another meeting to announce that "Mr. Peters" will soon receive a temporal lobotomy! "You are about to discover a clean and simple way of living. Living without thinking. You will star on another Aaron Spelling TV show!" Willie sneaks over to a payphone and calls the Burns-Mancini office (did Peter ever give him the phone number?). At that moment, Syd is on the phone with Michael, who is checking in from a diner in Merton. Willie tells Syd something about "Peter -- operating -- his brain!!" Syd hangs up! But she then takes Michael off the Hold button and tells him about the crank call she just got. Michael's eyes light up!

Jane and Syd talk again. Syd apologizes, and Jane tells her she was raped by Fashion Boy. Syd is shocked. Jane says that since Syd is her sister and since Jane can blackmail her, Syd will be "my alibi and co-conspirator as I set things right." "What do you mean?" "You're going to help me kill Fashion Boy!"

Back at Willowbridge that night, Kimberly and Nurse Benson prepare Peter for the lobotomy. Kim even tells Peter that he'll be conscious throughout the operation! Evil! Evil! Michael and Amanda arrive, but get no answer at the front gate. They go around back and break in through a window. Meanwhile, Kimberly turns on the power drill! Tune in next Monday: Same Bat-time! Same Bat-channel!

Next Week: The two-hour season finale! Ninja Jane confronts Fashion Boy! Dr. Love makes a house call in Jo's bed! Jake and Alison kiss! Amanda tells Peter to marry her! And Kimberly takes a dive!

--Ken Hart

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