An Unfortunate Episode: The Facts of Life “Starstruck”

After the commercial break, Mrs. Garrett calmly explains to Tootie that she can’t go to the concert because she’s already committed to the Scholarship Fair. Tootie insists she must go because she “can’t insult Jermaine.” Mrs. G is all like, “Uh, he’ll deal.” The weird thing is that this fifty-something woman thinks she can reason with her teenage stalker-in-training. Sure enough, Tootie flips. “I’m going!” she screeches, claiming she’ll take a bus or hitchhike her way there, if necessary. Then Tootie devolves into the most convulsive fit in the history of Very Special Episodes, making Jessie Spano’s caffeine pill-induced meltdown appear believable in comparison. “Let’s Get Serious” indeed! Mrs. Garrett embraces her lunatic charge and relents.

The Facts of Life (Screen: NBC)
The Facts of Life (Screen: NBC)

Later, Mrs. G explains to Jo, Blair and Natalie that she and Tootie will be going to the concert after all. The girls are rightly irritated, wondering when tantrums became an acceptable means of getting one’s way. Mrs. Garret claims Tootie would have jumped out a window and run to New York City if she hadn’t agreed. The girls are like, “Whatevs, don’t be a drama queen. This is just Tootie.” But Mrs. Garrett insists, “Right now, she’s not our Tootie. She’s become…”

“Fanatic,” says Blair.

GASP! Hide your wife, hide your kids, and hide your husbands, too… Tootie is OBSESSED!

Then Mrs. Garrett talks some nutty shit about how her generation’s worship of Frank Sinatra was a-okay but those young Beatles fans were way out of control. Coming just a little over a year after John Lennon’s murder, this is getting into some problematic territory.

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    Tara Rose
    About Tara Rose 106 Articles
    Since 2009, Tara has been writing snarky essays about pop culture, motherhood and her various neuroses at Rare Oats. She spends most of her other time selling cheese, raising a small human and goofing off with her husband Dan. E-mail:
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