We open at Sharkey’s to discover that Tiffani suddenly has an interest in volleyball that she claims she’s had her entire life. Yeah, fuck that surfing thing she talks about but we never actually see her do. Volleyball is her thing for the purposes of this episode, and she’s determined to make the “national volleyball team,” which I assume has something to do with the Olympics since she wants to earn a gold medal. In any case, she’s been so busy she hasn’t spent much time with the band and shit because her coach is working her so hard, and blah blah blah!
Meanwhile, after Sam and Lorena oogle some random volleyball guys, Sly, Tony, and Mark get the idea they should have a “studliest man contest” to be judged by Sam and Lorena. I’m more confused by why no one’s acting like they’re dating people and this doesn’t piss someone off.
And then Jake gets a couple of random girls as he says fuck the contest. This is a stupid out of order episode, isn’t it? As usual, the order placement sucks ass and they placed an episode that belonged near the beginning of the season as the season finale. Damn it, Engel-verse, can you never get this right?
In any case, a studliest man contest between Sly, Tony, and Mark is like an intelligence contest between Dustin Diamond and Tony Dillon: I guess there’s a winner, but does anyone even care?
In the girls’ locker room, Tiffani finds Lorena and Sam peeking through a little hole at the guys naked in their locker room because they need to do something to occupy themselves this episode.
They’re soon caught by Coach Hardaway and fuck off without consequences because no one actually cares what they’re doing, and so we can get on with our plot.
The coach lectures Tiffani on her performance and how she might not make it and shit and puts the stereotypical pressure on her to outperform since she’s the shortest one out there and shit.
A random member of the team shows up and is basically all, “I GUESS IT’S A GOOD THING THIS ISN’T A VERY SPECIAL EPISODE ON STEROIDS BECAUSE STEROIDS ARE BAD AND YOU WOULDN’T WANT TO DO STEROIDS EVEN THOUGH STEROIDS COULD HELP YOU! STEROIDS! STEROIDS! STEROIDS!”
Geez, I wonder if this is going to be a very special episode about steroids? I blame this girl’s random talking about steroids if Tiffani gets addicted this episode.
Back at Sharkey’s, the girls get to give the boys their first challenge: they have to pick up a girl with a single line. But it’s not just any girl!
No, the boys have to pick up Fergie. Yes, seriously, that’s Fergie, as in former lead singer for the Black Eyed Peas, long before she was famous. She has no time for Tony and Sly, and Mark’s so far out of his league that he doubts any guy could attract Fergie with just one line.
But then Jake comes in and tells Fergie she left her lights on, which is enough to get her horny and shit I guess because Jake Sommers is the only one on this show who can possibly compete with Fergie. And thus ends Fergie’s very brief stint on California Dreams before she went on to become about a million times more famous than any of the main cast.
Tiffani comes in with a hurt arm after having a girl spike a ball back down at her because that’s apparently enough for a serious injury on this show. Selfishly realizing how much making the team will help the band, the others start putting pressure on Tiffani, telling her she sucks ass if she can’t do it and shit because this episode wants to put as much undue pressure on Tiffani as possible.
This makes her take Sly aside and tell him she needs steroids and shit, rightfully assuming that, since he’s a shithead, he has drug dealing connections. Sly gives her the whole “drugs are bad for you!” speech before ultimately agreeing to help Tiffani get the steroids as long as she promises she’ll stop taking them after she makes the team and shit.
They apparently work, too, because, by the end of the commercial break, Tiffani’s suddenly Supergirl, super hyper and able to open stuck windows in a single bound. Steroids helped Tiffani make the first cut and instantly compensated for all her shortcomings and shit.
Now it’s time for the boys to see who can dress the studliest.
Tony’s dressed as his best “working on my car in my driveway” look.
Mark dresses in a tuxedo because he’s Mark.
And Sly dresses in nothing but his boxers. Naturally, none of this impresses girls in this universe because this is the one place where personality matters more than looks, so everyone throws shit at the three and a gaggle of girls goes off with Jake for a pre-dating Lorena orgy.
As Tiffani leaves, she promises Sly that, now that she’s made the first cut, she’ll stop taking steroids and shit.
At school, Tiffani’s surrounded by…adoring fans who want her autograph. I’m pretty sure that’s not how student athletics work in any universe. And Tony calls her the Nancy Kerrigan of PCH. Um, Tony, I hate to break it to you, but you know Nancy Kerrigan is a figure skater, not a volley ball player, or could the writers not be bothered to distinguish between Olympic sports, assuming it’s just all one mash-up of sports?
Tiffani’s beginning to show irritability from her steroids because she’s been on steroids for a week and, in the Engel-verse, that means a decade. Sly comes in and says he booked a television interview for the band once Tiffani makes the team, and it literally just occurred to me that no one realizes that, if Tiffani made the team, she’d no longer have time for the band as she’d have to practice all the time so she’d go the way of the Garrisons, unless we’re going by Saved by the Bell-style unlimited time for stuff as long as the plot doesn’t call for otherwise. So tell me again how Tiffani’s athletics benefit the band?
In any case, we’re really hammering home this anti-steroids message, so the pressure gets to Tiffani and she takes more steroids
In the girl’s locker room, Sly tries to sneak into Sam’s locker to see who’s winning the contest, but finds a mouse trap and a note because they predicted his behavior.
The real reason he’s in the locker room, though, is to witness Tiffani talk to herself about how she’s out of steroids and shit. She slams Sly up against the lockers when he tries to lecture her and demands he comply with more drug dealing. Now, normally Sly would deserve to get slammed up against the locker, but it’s not convenient for the plot so fuck that shit. When he won’t help her, she says she’ll get the drugs herself and shit.
In the hallway, the stupid subplot continues. Sly’s disqualified since he’s not in a random place at a random time, so the girls ask Tony and Mark when it’s appropriate for a man to cry. I’ll tell you when: after watching the Dustin Diamond porno! They naturally both fuck up that test…
…but Jake comes in at that very moment telling a girl about how he cried at the movie they saw. Sam and Lorena are all, “Fuck this subplot! Jake wins because he’s obviously the only male character on this show worth anything! Besides, he kissed Fergie!” And thus ends the stupid subplot.
Sly comes in and tells the band that Tiffani’s on steroids. Though they don’t believe him at first because, come on, it’s Sly, her cranky pants behavior as late eventually convinces them and they look somber as they contemplate how preachy they want to go on this show.
At Sharkey’s, Tiffani’s carried in by a random bunch of admirers and shit after making the team because, once again, Peter Engel doesn’t understand student athletics.
The band are all preachy and shit about steroids and Tiffani’s all, “It’s all the writer of this episode’s fault for putting so much contrived pressure into the script!” The band continue preaching to her and tell her they turned down the television interview.
Tiffani gets mad and, in what’s obviously intended to be this show’s take on Jessie’s caffeine pill freak out, she knocks a bunch of shit off a table and then breaks down crying in Jake’s arms, because using steroids for a couple weeks definitely affects you this much!
At the loft, Tiffani tells the band she’s sorry for everything she’s done and she quit the volleyball team since she really doesn’t give a shit about that sport anyway. She’s going to counseling and that instantly helped her get off the steroids.
And our episode and our season ends with the band embracing in a big hug as Peter Engel puts his name on-screen in pride at another half-assed preachy episode.
You know, for an episode that’s supposed to be California Dream‘s answer to “Jessie’s Song,” this sure as hell was a boring episode. “Jessie’s Song” is classic because it’s so ludicrous you can laugh your ass off at it. The only thing that stands out to me from this episode is the lingering question of how the hell Fergie ended up on a Peter Engel show in the 1990s? I mean, seriously, I thought Jamie Kennedy and Mr. Belvedere were the most famous we were going to get, and then she goes and shows up. I mean, shit!
No song this week.