Boston Public 1.22 FAQ
What’s it called?
Teleplay is credited solely to series creator David E. Kelley.
What’s TV Guide say?
“The drama (which has been renewed for next season) ends its first year with a moving cap-and-gown ceremony. But confrontational issues precede the big event. Mandy Patinkin (who won an Emmy as Dr. Jeffrey Geiger in an earlier David E. Kelley series, ‘Chicago Hope’) portrays a pushy dad who withdrew his son from Winslow for home schooling, yet now demands that the teen graduate on-stage with his class. In other developments, Principal Harper (Chi McBride) clashes with Marla (Loretta Devine) over her grading of a Harvard-bound senior; and reprehends Lauren, whose aborted love affair with a former student raises new concerns.”
What’s the TV Guide ad say?
”The faculty and class of 2001 cordially invite you to Winslow High School’s commencement exercises. Get ready for anything.”
What is TV Guide not telling us?
There are a few surprises at the commencement exercises, but they are small ones.
Does Jeremy Columbine the place?
He does not.
Does Daniel Columbine the place?
But Cheryl Holt! Surely she…
Against all expectations, no one Columbines anything. Which, in hindsight, is completely understandable: It’s only been two years since the season finale of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” was postponed – because it depicted a violence-packed graduation ceremony!
The Big News?
It looks like Mandy Patinkin will play a recurring role next season as a substitute teacher even more abrasive and quick-witted than Harry Senate!
It’s the deal Harper makes: Be my substitute, and I’ll let your home-schooled whelp collect his diploma on Winslow’s stage. (Those who recall how well David Kelley’s barbs fit in Mandy Patinkin’s mouth during the first season-and-a-half of “Chicago Hope” will find this news exceptionally gratifying.)
Fleeting but electric. His appearance is just a set-up for next season, but every time one watches his insult-piling exit from Guber’s office, one cannot help but break out laughing. If ever a writer and an actor were made for each other!
How does the finale begin?
With a very long recap. We see pilot footage of Harper mashing the bully into lockers, we see Guber confront Cheryl Holt about her Website, we see Harry confront Dana Poole about her stripping, we see Guber telling Jackson he has “flair,” we see Lisa Grier admitting to Harper that she’s been teaching her Shakespeare class since November, we see Guber interviewing with his former student for the headmasters’ position, we see Harper and Guber fighting over Guber not getting that job, we see Jeremy Peters’ mom lying to Marylin about her son’s injuries, we see Mom Peters admit to Harper that she does occasionally lock Jeremy in the basement for punishment, we see Daniel obsessing over Lauren, we see Lauren buying a gun.
What happens after the recap?
It’s nighttime, and Daniel sneaks up on Lauren in an empty faculty parking lot to confronts her about going to Harry and the police. She ends up pulling her gun. Daniel flees. And then we – meet the parents!
And what do Daniel’s parents have to say?
He’s a nut! Daniel’s folks are trying to get him committed to a treatment facility, and they wanted to warn Lauren that his latest delusion is that he’s Lauren’s lover, and that Lauren pulled a gun on him! That crazy Daniel!
Uh oh. Is Daniel really authoring a history textbook?
No. The ‘rents explain he just copied another text, presumably as a pretence to spend time with Lauren.
How does Harper “reprehend” Lauren Davis?
He suspends her for two months; she doesn’t get to teach her summer program. (Harper thinks the gun-pointing business a bit much.)
Is there any news on the Jeremy front?
His story to Marylin this week is his mother just took off:
JEREMY: She did it before, after your little confrontation. She said to me, “Okay, you think you can do well without me?” and she left. It’s like some kind of test. She did it before expecting my grades to go down, expecting me to fall apart and stuff. It won’t happen, Ms. Suder. I promise.
MARYLIN: Where does she go?
JEREMY: I have no idea. She’ll be back eventually.
MARYLIN: And she won’t be at commencement?
JEREMY: I dunno. She might, she might not.
Didn't Kelley name Jeremy after the Pearl Jam song?
Does the episode really end with the graduation ceremony?
Not quite! The last thing we see is a shot of Jeremy’s basement.
Mandy Patinkin! Fyvush Finkel! Lauren’s crack about the symphony! And the interplay between Guber and his former debate star! This “Boston Public” is funnier than the ones we usually get!
What’s not so good?
Between the plotlines with Daniel, Jeremy and Marla, I was certain half the school would be in body bags by the closing credits. The episode offers solid comedy and drama, but the previous episodes seemed to be preparing us for real mayhem.
Herc’s rating for “Boston Public” 1.22?
The Hercules T. Strong Rating System:
**** better than most motion pictures
*** actually worth your valuable time
** as horrible as most stuff on TV
* makes you quietly pray for bulletins