Last week, the kids recognized their religious differences and came together for a town prayer meeting. Cody missed his family and his girlfriend. After much thought and a few root beer shooters, he tearfully bids farewell to Bonanza City. Morgan was awarded the gold star and Taylor’s work ethic again fell under attack. If you missed the show, check out AJane’s fantastic recap here.
The Times They Are A-Changing
It seems that our pioneers, like most kids, don’t want to wake up with the chickens every morning. Anjay tries to wake up his district to get to work and meets much resistance. They respond to his yelling with a lot of moaning and groaning. He threatens to get a megaphone next time. Great idea because yeah, that won’t piss anyone off. Olivia wishes him luck and points out that no one really listens to Anjay.
Every couple days, the town council members meet in the chapel to read the “old” pioneer journal. Coincidentally (or not), the journal speaks of the original town leaders and their abuse of power. It suggests district elections for the council seats. This idea makes Anjay a little nervous since he feels many of the kids in his district hate him. Laurel encourages them to use this time to prove themselves. Mike plans to fight one heck of a battle and Taylor sits in stunned silence. I’m thinking the beauty queen knows her crown will soon be overthrown.
The council makes their way to the mess hall to inform the citizens of the upcoming election. They are met with a food fight and Anjay gets blasted. Me, all I can think of is John Belushi yelling “Food fiiiiiggggghhht!” Now THAT was a food fight! The kids have fun with it though and make a big mess. Anjay figures if you can’t beat them, join them. He returns fire and throws food back at his attackers.
Little Miss Goody Two-ShoesOlivia criticizes him by pointing out how immature his actions are. I’m thinking it do Olivia some good to loosen up a little and throw a biscuit or flick some mashed potatoes at someone. For a split second, the camera pans to Nathan who is ducking down while quickly shoveling food into his mouth. He’d obviously rather eat his food. Laurel finally gets everyone’s attention and Mike announces the reelections. The kids applaud the announcement. They are obviously ready for some change.
Zach is apparently planning to run for the yellow council seat. He practices his speech in the street but it’s rather pointless actually. The yellow district is so ready to give Taylor the boot. Zach could tell them he plans to practice prohibition and make it his mission to shut down the saloon, thereby delivering Bonanza City from the evils of root beer; and they’d still vote for him over Taylor.
Laurel’s green district makes her proud when they meet to discuss the election. Sophia asks the group if anyone there would not vote for Laurel. No one raises a hand. Michael tells he would run if he was in any other district but as things are, he sees no reason for change. A tearful Laurel promises to continue doing a good job.
Anjay doesn’t quite have the same kind of touchy-feely moment, however. When approached by Olivia, he turns his back on her and rudely says he needs some time to think. She keeps talking anyway, letting him know that she plans to run against him. He then yells at her to shut up. Imagine if those in leadership responded to all of their critics in that way. It’d make for some interesting debates. That’s for sure.
The kids are gathered in the middle of town for a caucus of sorts. Each council member gives a speech outlining why he or she should be reelected. Afterwards, anyone wishing to run for that seat will come forward with a speech. Mike advices the town to choose the person who is best at taking charge and making the right decisions for the them, however, he privately confesses that he thinks he is the best person for the job. Guylan stands to run for the red district and Mike is shocked because Guylan called him “sir” on the first day. Guylan tells the town that he will be a man of the people and make Bonanza City a democracy not a dictatorship. Anjay takes the stage and in a mouse-like voice, he promises to work harder. Olivia steps up in opposition and proclaims that it is not a popularity contest. She says she’s always worked hard and they should vote for the best leader. See, I’m thinking she’s a stick in the mud and the kids would prefer someone who can have a little fun, even if he does have a timid, mousy voice. Taylor is up next and she admits her laziness but once again, vows to change. It’s no surprise when Zach steps up to run against her. In his well rehearsed speech, he says he’s sick of being told to “deal with it” and proclaims it’s not about saying but about doing. The town cheers wildly and Taylor says that albeit good, it’s not the best speech she’s ever heard.
Mike tries to dissuade Guylan from running by telling him he’s more of a follower. Guylan quickly retorts that he doesn’t like following people, he likes helping people. He’s thick-skinned so he feels he can handle the job. He then says Mike should be pretty worried.
Whacking The Presidential Pinata
We’re treated to Sophia, Morgan, and Kennedy brushing their teeth with their finger and baking soda. Sophia comments that she’d give up a week’s wages for a toothbrush. Foreshadowing, perhaps? Why, of course it is.
It’s showdown time and in keeping with the political theme, the kids must run into a field of hanging piñatas and find seven cards featuring US presidents. The kids need to whack the donkey and elephant piñatas which may or may not contain cards. If so, they are to run the cards back to their district leaders who will put them in chronological order by presidency. The first team to do so becomes the upper class and so on and so on. We all know the drill by now. If all 4 districts complete the task in thirty minutes, they’ll earn a reward for the town. Mike is confident that he knows the presidents and is anxious to get started. Taylor confesses that she doesn’t know who was president before George W. Bush. Lucky for the yellow district, Zach does and leads his team to first place. Laurel’s green district was actually first but had their cards in the wrong order. They rearrange them to finish a close second. They’re more than thrilled to finally be something other than laborers. The red district comes in third assigning the laborer position to the blue district.
Jonathan reveals the reward and the kids go nuts. It’s a huge barbeque with ribs, chicken, hotdogs, and hamburgers. They’re all salivating at the thought of getting the meat. Their second choice is toothbrushes, toothpaste, mouthwash, and floss. It’s clear that the kids want the barbeque but when the council meets to decide, they choose the toothbrushes. Mike wants the meat but Taylor argues they can have meat whenever they want but they can’t get their teeth back if they lose them. “Kill a chicken,” she tells him. The town is outraged at the council’s choice as they should be. Frankly, I don’t get it. These are children, right? The same children who recently had a foodfight? They must be responsible-adult-controlled robots when it’s time for these rewards to be chosen because no way would any kid I know choose a toothbrush over barbeque or a microwave over pizza. Jonathan no doubt handed them the script and coached them during the last break.
No Longer Bad To The Bone
Zach is a good sport and wishes Taylor luck. Taylor isn’t worried because she thinks she has all of the girls’ votes. Zach realizes that he only needs one girl to sway the vote so he talks to Randi. He promises that she can still sleep late if that’s her only reason for keeping Taylor and reminds her he is the better leader. Mike is confident for the most part that he’ll stay in power. He doesn’t realize that most of his district wants a change. Olivia singles out Greg and campaigns for his vote by badmouthing Anjay. She calls him a follower and says she’s more committed and works harder. Greg has heard enough but he politely tells her he’ll think about it.
The kids have hung posters all over town to support their favorite candidate. Markelle hops along on his pogo stick and almost incites a riot by ripping down one of Taylor’s posters. Doesn't he know that talking about a revolution sounds like a whisper? *a nod to one of my favorite Tracy Chapman songs* Leila is upset because she made the poster and she squeezes Markelle’s arm demanding an explanation to why he ripped the poster. He repeatedly tells her to let him go and for a moment, I fear a fight. His only response is yelling that Taylor needs to go. She cries in her bunkhouse and Greg acts as a big brother to comfort her. Taylor quips that he’s not bad to the bone anymore.
The council meets to discuss the gold star candidates. Greg’s name is suggested but Mike isn’t crazy about the idea. He and Greg have been at odds since day one. Zach is nominated because he always tries to get along with others.
At the town council meeting, the first order of business is to award the gold star. It goes to…..Greg. He shows the town a different side of himself as he tearfully tells them the star means he’s going to college. He has no money put away and feels the star will change his life. The kids are moved to tears as he thanks them. Jonathan hands him the key to the “phone booth” but suggests he call his parents later because it’s time for elections.
Ballots are handed out and Jonathan reminds them of the candidates. Since no one opposes Laurel, she retains her council seat. Jonathan instructs the kids to vote and stuff their ballot into the appropriate box. Luckily, the votes are handwritten and there are no hanging chads. Jonathan tallies the votes for the blue district and Anjay retains his seat by a vote of 7-3. Anjay thanks his district and Olivia and promises to listen to her opinions in the future. She scowls and says she doesn’t believe him. Can you say sore loser?
The red district’s votes are counted next. Mike receives only one vote and Guylan wins by a landslide. “That sucks!” Mike screams. He does manage to smile a little but cries because he doesn’t know what he did wrong. He steps down gallantly, however, and welcomes Guylan to his new seat. In private, he feels the red district has made the wrong choice. Michael even confesses that Mike did a better job than he got credit for doing.
Mike : “My ego pretty much just got like eaten, digested, and crapped out by a coyote, torn apart by vultures, and tossed off a cliff.
On to the yellow district and excitement builds over the notion of Taylor’s dethronement. It’s close, but she’s overthrown as Zach wins by a vote of 5-4. With a raised fist, he dramatically proclaims, “Viva Revolution!” The kids applaud in approval and Taylor manages to smile through her tears of disappointment. She acknowledges Zach’s a hard worker and hugs him as she turns over her seat.
Greg heads out to make his phone call. We see a short clip as the credits roll of him telling his mom that he won the gold star worth $20,000 and that it’ll be his college fun. “Amen, honey!” she replies, “You rock n’ roll!”
Next week, it looks like Taylor is involved in more drama as Bonanza City faces an environmental hazard.
What's your favorite Tracey Chapman song? PM me.