Belz on Bell

Saved By The Bell S2E18: "The Glee Club"

“Love is in the air, and you’ll never guess who’s the hottest couple at Bayside!” Zack introduces from the MAX. I bet it’s Mr. and Mrs. Belding.

I was wrong. It’s Screech and Tori Spelling. Uh, I mean Violet.

While Screech and Violet grab a table to lovingly stare into each other’s eyes, the gang comments on how happy Screech is. “And look at Violet,” Jessie comments. “She has stars in her eyes.”

“And rocks in her head!” Lisa comments. “My cat won’t even go near Screech when he has a fish in his pocket!” Get your retorts in now, Lisa. We all know that 85% of your dialogue on this show is a comment on how Screech is annoying, so now that he’s moved on, they may as well just have written you off this episode.

Violet and Screech talk about how they went to a movie and Screech realizes he mistook her chauffeur to be her father. Obviously nobody introduces themselves in Violet’s family. Zack, Kelly, Slater, Jessie and Lisa soon join their table to invite them out to go bowling. While Violet would love to go, she can’t – she has glee club after school. Cheerfully, she invites them to totally join the club, and Kelly and Zack feel this way about it:

Slater says that he likes more active things than glee club; football, wrestling and Jessie. TMI! Lisa is less kind in her rejection, stating that the glee club is for geeks. You’re 0 for 2 here Lisa, and the episode has only been on for about three minutes.

Violet says that the glee club is perfect for her, since her parents forced her to join an extracurricular activity and singing would help her hide in a group. Probably like those extras on Glee. (Sidenote: I have never watched Glee, so I’m just guessing they have extras.) Screech offers to join her, which leads Violet to snort in … well, glee.

It’s then when Violet lets it out that the glee club National Competition is in Hawaii this year. “Hawaii?” Zack questions. He obviously feels this way about that factoid:

He’s so amped to win that he manages to get everyone to join with him.

Flash forward to glee club practice: Slater is a bit miffed, since he’s missed two wrestling practices ever since Zack forced him to join. Obviously Slater is unaware that he’s fully able to quit the glee club.

In walks the fabulous Mr. Tuttle, whose the advisor for the club. I love Mr. Tuttle!

When Lisa loudly sneezes, Tuttle quips that she’s off-key. Oh, that Tuttle! Jessie asks to move, stating that she doesn’t want to catch Lisa’s cold and shoves next to Kelly. You guys know the rule – you need to move one-full-person-away from a sneeze if you want to be immune. I’m pretty sure I saw that on a motivational poster once.

Before the group can start, Belding walks in to interrupt. Since the All City Sing is just a week away, he’s curious on the club’s progress. “If I needed to be nagged, I’d call your wife!” Tuttle says. So, let’s keep score here: Turtle is 0-2, and Tuttle’s 2-0. If you count that deathly sneeze, Turtle’s stats are even lower. I’ll wait to see if it’s a major plot point.

The group starts by singing the ‘Civil War Medley’. Three groups of students start singing randomly and they’re all horrible. It’s really tough to believe that three of them were in the famous pop group Hot Chocolate. It’s even tougher to believe that Zack Attack originated this way.

“… We’ve come a long way,” Tuttle embarrassingly admits to Belding. Belding pulls him aside, reminding him that the All City Sing is at Bayside this year and the shoddy performance could embarrass the entire school! “I’m giving you 48 hours to shape up,” Belding threatens. Yeesh. Now I know who inspired Simon Cowell.

Back at home, Zack and Screech brainstorm on how to make the glee club sound better. “Maybe we can cut out the singing part!” suggests Screech. Soon after, Violet calls the house and says she got tickets to a concert at Cal State. Screech asks Zack’s permission on whether or not they could go. Zack forbids it, saying that they really need to focus. While Screech passes the news onto Violet, he ends the call with kisses and romance.

Screech thinks they should reconsider – after all, they might be able to pick up some pointers from the show. “It’s not every day you get to see the California Glee Club,” Screech reasons. Zack realizes he has a point and tells Screech to call Violet back. Zack fishes for his tape recorder in his underwear drawer and says he’ll be bringing it with him.

Back at school, Zack has his boombox handy. “Just do what we practiced,” he advises to the group. Wait – now I know where this is going!

A clueless Tuttle walks in with Belding, stating that the progress they’ve made since yesterday might not be noticeable to the amateur ear. “Remember, everyone. Posture, Pitch and Pray,” Tuttle nervously advises.

Screech presses play and out come the completely noise-free live recording of the California Glee Club. Yeesh. Now I know who inspired Ashlee Simpson on SNL. (Okay, I know. That bad joke is pretty dated.)  The lipsynching completely fools Belding and he leaves the class with a smile on his face.

Tuttle, on the other hand, is much smarter than that. Zack admits that the singing was from a completely different glee club, with pride. “Zachary! That’s despicable, deceitful and I’m delighted you did it!” Tuttle says. He thanks the club for buying him some time and Tuttle promises to whip them into shape in time for the competition.

Later, Zack tells the audience that he thought up a plan: Find the good singers and hide everyone else. Kelly auditions first and is pretty weak. Next up is Jessie, who is wearing a surgical mask. She’s not letting Lisa’s cold invade her precious body. Wait – Lisa sneezed once and it was days ago! I’d really hate to see how she handled the bird flu scares.

Tuttle asks Violet to sing next and she’s amazing! The gang cheers, since who knew! Tuttle announces her to be the soloist, which brings her into a panic. She joined this club to hide, remember?

Zack pressures Screech to talk Violet into it – after all, Violet is “his woman”.

“Come here, my heart,” Screech says, leading her into the hallway. Screech promises to stand behind her the entire time, and tells her how fantastic she’ll be. Lisa, you missed out. Even though Screech is a dork, he’s proven to be the best boyfriend on this show.

Violet then tells Screech that her parents want to meet him on Saturday night and invites him for dinner. Leaving Screech in shock, he meets up with his friends. While coaxing her to perform was a win, Screech admits that he’s crazy nervous over meeting her folks. After all, they’re rich. I mean, Violet drives to school in a limo.

Slater and Lisa offer to give advice; Slater mentions how Screech should compare her mother to a big movie star. “Is that why you told my Mother she looks like Candace Bergen?” Jessie questions. “Oh no – that’s true!” says Slater. Off the hook!

That Monday, a downtrodden Screech walks into the glee club practice. “I did just what you guys told me,” Screech said, bringing on a flashback.

He compared Violet’s Mom to Arnold Schwarzenegger, asked if the frog legs he was served would cause warts, drools a lemon everywhere and ends the meal by bringing the entire tablecloth with him. Because, of course Screech tucked it into his pants. Of course.

In walks Tuttle, along with a sad Violet. Violet announces that she’s quitting the glee club and Screech admits it was probably to get away from him. Zack asks Jessie to sub, but Jessie … has a cold. Bravo, Miss Spano. While everyone accuses Lisa for sneezing that one time, they should be accusing her of turning an innocent fruit bowl into a necklace. That’s it, Turtle. Four strikes against you.

Meanwhile, Violet is crying in the Girl’s Bathroom and the girls find her snorting and crying into a wad of toilet paper. She admits that she knows she let everyone down, but being around Screech would be too painful. She doesn’t hate Screech, but her parents do.

Zack is consoling Screech, while Violet walks in and asks to speak with him. “After you left last night, my parents forbid me to go out with you anymore,” she admits. “I should be the one to quit,” Screech says. “The only reason I joined was to be with you!” Violet says she doesn’t know if she can sing without Screech behind her, and Screech states that he’ll always be behind her – it doesn’t necessarily have to be on the bleachers. Aww.

It’s competition day, and Screech appears in his best red suspenders to cheer on Violet and give her a rose. In walk Violet’s parents, who see Screech and reprimand Violet for disobeying them. They’ll continue the conversation at home. Upset, Violet walks out of the competition, leaving Tuttle to stall for the group.

Zack sees the audience get restless, and does a classic Morris “TIME OUT!” For those unfamiliar, this is a phrase Zack yells to get everyone to freeze. Yes, my friends. Zack Morris can stop time. And even better than stopping time is having a backup plan.

Zack brought the original fake-out tape with him, in the slim chance that Violet’s parents would see Screech causing Violet to run out and cry in the bathroom! Genius.

Zack runs in the back with the tape and asks Screech – unaffected by the worldwide Time Out for some reason (probably based on the length of their friendship) – to hook it up to the sound system.  Zack runs back to the stage and unfreezes time, whispering his master plan to Tuttle. Tuttle announces their famous ‘Saint’s Go Marching In’ rendition, and I’m sure nothing can go wrong at this point, right?

Screech has some issues with the tape, launching the glee club into full-on Chipmunk mode. After the song finishes and Belding is like, “What the eff, dude?” Screech accidentally plays the tape in slow-mo. Soon, the tape blows up and all that’s heard is whiny – well, screeching. Why didn’t they just give Screech an MP3?!

Despite clearly being a recording, Zack explains that it was their impression of a glee club tuning up. Somewhere, Milli Vanilli wishes they had similar luck. Blame it on the- Blame it on the – Blame it on the – Blame it on the rain.

Luckily, Zack bought enough time to push a post-teary Violet Bickerstaff on stage. Yet, Violet isn’t mentally prepared to sing. It’s tough to blame her – not only is this entire competition riding on her performance, but she’s probably getting screamed at by her parents later.

Finally, Violet belts out “Beautiful dreamer, wake unto me…” yet freezes after the starlight and dewdrops. An awkward pause of silence fills the air, until Screech joins his heart on stage, picking up on the missing lyrics. Whoa, now it’s a duet! Rad. Eventually, Violet gains her confidence to do a pretty decent job.

Back at the MAX, the gang finally admits that Screech did something right. They would have been lost without him! As Zack says how it’s a shame how things won’t work out between him and Violet, Violet enters the MAX. Followed by her parents.

Before Screech can scream bloody murder, Violet’s Mom says how they saw him rescue their daughter and no longer disapprove of their relationship. The two hug and the audience is psyched. Mrs. Bickerstaff says that “Samuel” is welcome at their house any time.

“Except dinner time!” Zack quips.

… Wait. Did they ever make it to Hawaii? I’m guessing not, but. Uh.

Lessons Learned: A glee club can be formed with just one person whose partially talented.

 Photo Credits: These are all from me.

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