Retro Television Reviews: California Dreams 3.8 “The Princess and the Yeti” and 3.9 “Winkle/Wicks World”


Welcome to Retro Television Reviews, a feature where we review some of our favorite and least favorite shows of the past!  On Saturdays, I will be reviewing California Dreams, which ran on NBC from 1992 to 1996.  The entire show is currently streaming on YouTube!

This week the Dreams go to Colorado and Public Access Television.  To quote Matt Garrison, “Let’s do it!”

Episode 3.8 “The Princess and the Yeti”

(Dir by Patrick Maloney, originally aired on October 29th, 1994)

The Dreams have left California for Colorado!  It’s on temporary, however.  They’ve been hired to play at the ski resort that’s owned by Lorena’s father, Mr. Costas (Abraham Alvarez).  Lorena is looking forward to skiing and showing off her new outfit.  Her father wants her to work the front desk.  “I’m allergic to work,” Lorena says, which leads to everyone saying that Lorena is spoiled.

Which is not true at all!  Listen, Lorena is on vacation.  You don’t work when you’re on vacation.  At no point does Lorena’s father say that he’ll pay for Lorena to work the front desk.  Instead, he just says, “I need you to work the front desk tonight.”  Nah, old man.  It doesn’t work like that.  I, myself, have been called spoiled enough time to know that everyone is being way too hard on Lorena.  Lorena has every right to expect a chance to ski while on a SKI VACATION!

Anyway, Mr. Costas wants to expand his resort but there’s an old man (Sandy Ward) who lives in a cabin and he refuses to move off his property.  If the stubborn old man wasn’t bad enough, there’s also a Yeti running around the forest.  But what if that Yeti is just a man dressed in a costume?  Who would have the motive?  Mr. Costas?  No, he would be costing himself money by doing that.  How about the Old Man?  Other than the Dreams, he’s the only other person in this episode.

After Tony gets scared by the Yeti, he runs into the forest.  The rest of the Dreams follow him and come across the Old Man’s cabin and his yeti costume.  When Mr. Costas finds out, he wants to press charges but the Dreams are like, “He’s just an nice old man!”  Yeah, and you’re a bunch of high school kids from California.  Your opinion really isn’t that important.

The Dreams get mad at Lorena for not telling her father that the Old Man deserves to stay in his cabin.  (Again, I’m not sure how it’s any of their business.)  Miffed, Lorena goes skiing alone and injures her knee.  The Old Man saves her life and Lorena offers to help pay off whatever money the Old Man is costing her father by working the front desk and not taking an allowance for a year.  Mr. Costas agrees and everything works out …. except, of course, Lorena lives in California so how is she going work the front desk of a Colorado resort?

Also, I don’t care how nice the Old Man is.  He still dressed up like a Yeti and did a lot of property damage to Mr. Costas’s business.  Drag his his ass to jail!

This episode mostly serves to remind us that the California Dreams belong in California and on the beach.  It just doesn’t seem right whenever they appear in a different location.  It’s like one of those weird episodes of Saved By The Bell: The New Class where the gang all ended up working at a ranch.  As much of a misfire as this episode was, I did laugh at the scene where Jake had to wear Lorena’s pink snow jacket while searching for Tony.  A few years ago, in the middle of a torrential rain storm, Jeff informed me that he would rather get soaked and risk pneumonia than borrow my hot pink umbrella.  What do men have against the color pink?

Anyway, let’s move on!

Episode 3.9 “Winkle/Wicks World”

(Dir by Patrick Maloney, originally aired on November 12th, 1994)

Tony and Sly get a show on public access TV!  What was the deal with people in Peter Engel-produced shows always ending up on Public Access Television?  Anyway, The Goo-Ga-Moo Guys becomes a big hit, despite being just a lame Wayne’s World rip-off.  (To the show’s credit, Jake refers to show as being a “Wayne’s World rip-off.”)  Unfortunately, this means that Tony no longer has time to play drums and Sly no longer has time to manage the band.  Lorena takes over as manager and teaches the band how to be classy so that they can play an upper class gig that is, for some reason, being held at Sharky’s.

Anyway, fame goes to Tony and Sly’s heads.  In the end, though, they decide that friendship is more important than fame.  *Yawn*  This is a plot that was used and reused by so many Peter Engel-produced shows that, at times, it seems as if the entire Englverse was an autopilot.

Hopefully, next week’s episodes will encourage us to seek good vibrations and feel mellow.

One response to “Retro Television Reviews: California Dreams 3.8 “The Princess and the Yeti” and 3.9 “Winkle/Wicks World”

  1. Pingback: Lisa Marie’s Week In Review: 1/9/23 — 1/15/23 | Through the Shattered Lens

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