#1.18 Docuventary

"There's smoke coming out of your camera." -Ben

Aired May 4, 1999

In a nutshell: Sean makes a documentary about college life, but ends up turning the cameras on Felicity and Noel; Ben puts more money on the Clippers; Meghan wears funeral attire; Noel visits a hypnotist.

People who thought this up: J.J. Abrams (the writer); Stan Salfas (the director)

Guests: Greg Grunberg (Sean), Amanda Foreman (Meghan), Robert Patrick Benedict (Richard), Dash Mihok (Lynn), Brian Klugman (Guy), Don Perry, Gregg Daniel, Jarrod Crawford (Darryl), Ali Hillis (Chloe), Chris Sarandon (Prof. McGrath)

Tunes: Squeeze ("Tempted"--Reality Bites soundtrack); Staple Singers ("I'll Take You There"--Greatest Hits)


Long summary

Sean's just trying to make a documentary about college (a totally professional movie), but Ben's worried about the video camera: specifically, its smoking quality. A free month's rent in exchange for being videotaped doesn't sound bad, though.

Meanwhile, Felicity's got a pasta theory (lasagna on Mondays equals hell week) and a theory about Noel (she misses the big lug).

But she's got more pressing things to think about, namely, her seminar project, and why McGrath calls Elena by her first name. Guy's just thinking about Conan O'Brian (he's scored tickets), which means he's going to be rejected by a whole series of girls. Not that Felicity takes it all personally.

But Sean just wants to get personal with Julie--and get some major scoop for his documentary. Julie thinks there may be a flip side to making friends, but Noel's thinking they've finally succumbed to the insipid world of pornography. He offers to do a little docuventary graphic--which in Sean's book equals nice. But Julie's got her own opinions.

From Sean's video outtakes, we learn that Richard the barbecue boy (and hand model entrepreneur) comes from a family of seven kids (sarcastically, he says). Lynn just wants to go with God.

Ben learns that he's got a bunch of outstanding loans, threatening his status at school.

Noel and Felicity decide to work on their issues, and start over as friends. Not that Sean's videotaping any of it (since he's technically not there).

Because she was knee deep in conversation with Cyber Boy (and hence late to class), Felicity learns that McGrath has paired everyone in the class for a project, except for her. Not that she's whining.

Video outtakes--the short version

Elena: "Don't let them pity you."

Guy: "Can't get any good pizza in Buffalo."

Lynn: "I'm smart, man. You know, I read."

Chloe: "There's something transcendant about being around books all day."

Ben: "Are we done yet?"

Finally, it's Noel's turn, but Sean just wants to talk about Felicity (which he decides is the real subject for his docu-drama). Sean discovers that Noel can't get the image of Stud Mr. Cool Artist Jerk out of his mind, so he suggests a hypnotist.

Lynn's begging Ben for free brownies ($5 is definitely not too much for a pastry), while Ben's thinking about those darn Clippers again. He asks Lynn to place another bet.

Meanwhile, Sean just wants to videotape "the unknowing costar," who's busy ducking his lens.

More video outtakes

Guy: "I'm very complex."

Julie: "I just think she was lonely." (referring to Hanna)

Elena: "That's my girl."

Felicity goes to Noel's to use his Photoshop, but Noel's still thinking about the Eli mini-saga. Which means, of course, that he can't be her friend.

Felicity dodges video boy yet again.

Video outtakes, part trois

Darryl: "As far as I see it, Felicity's out."

Ben: "What do you mean, replaced by Eli?" [ed. note: try literal interpretation]

Guy stops by while Noel is on his way to see the hypnotist.

Felicity thinks that love is genetic (okay, it's for a project). And she still can't partner with Elena.

The hypnotist doesn't think it's possible to cure a human addiction (to another human), but Noel gives it a shot anyways. The hypnotist tries to make his body feel like lead (or something).

Felicity tells Sean (on video) that relationships are hard (they just are). And no, he can't videotape Meghan, who interrupts their taping session.

Ben becomes upset when the Clippers lose. But Julie's just trying to eavesdrop on Ben and Lynn's conversation, while Sean's trying to pry information from her about the Felicity-Noel brouhaha. When Lynn decides that he's not going to loan Ben any more dough, Ben freaks out, and does the punching thing.

Video outtakes--the last stretch

Sean: "What's your biggest fear?"

Meghan: "That this interview goes on for more than 3 minutes."

Sean: "Can I ask you about relationships?"

Meghan: "I don't know, can you?"

Elena (separate interview): "What the hell was that?" [ed note: McGrath?]

Meghan: "It’s like living with a TV that’s always playing Little House on the Prairie, only with more sweaters."

Richard: "I'd get away with all sorts of stuff."

Meghan: "Get over it, Noel!"

Richard: "The guy was a minnow."

Sean just wants a happy ending, though, which he finally gets--when Felicity and Noel decide to reconcile. But first, Sean encourages Noel to fight for the relationship, and let him videotape it--after he shows Noel the video of Felicity admitting that she loves him. That's when they actually decide to reconcile. Argh.

The last of the video outtakes

Richard: "You gotta hear this baby."

Julie: "I think they make a really good couple."

Guy: "They seem to me that they have some kind of, like, destined chemistry."

Darryl: "You think he's going to forgive her?"

So yes, the terrible twosome gets back together, and Sean tries to videotape it--but it's not steamy enough, or something.

1999 jenoy@pacbell.net Please do not reproduce without permission.