Retro Television Review: City Guys 4.18 “Who Da Man” and 4.19 “Get To Preppin”

Welcome to Retro Television Reviews, a feature where we review some of our favorite and least favorite shows of the past!  On Thursdays, I will be reviewing City Guys, which ran on NBC from 1997 to 2001.  The entire show is currently streaming on YouTube!

This week, the kids have another subway adventure and it’s time for midterms!

Episode 4.18 “Who Da Man”

(Dir by Frank Bonner, originally aired on November 18th, 2000)

This is a weird episode.

I guess because the producers didn’t want to waste their subway set, Al, Dawn, and Cassidy had yet another adventure on a train.  This time, the three of them were approached by two muggers who demanded Al’s jacket.  Despite all of his brave talk, Al meekly surrendered his jacket.  Fortunately, Dawn remembered her self-defense training and somehow managed to flip the main mugger to the ground.  Dawn saved Al’s life but, in his eyes, she also robbed him of his dignity.  Of course, those of us who have been watching this show from the beginning know that Al never had any dignity to begin with.

After Cassidy tells the editor of the school newspaper about what happened, everyone at the school knows that Al needed Dawn to save his jacket.  Al demands that Dawn start acting more “like a girl.”  Dawn reacts by acting so girly that Al has a mental breakdown and says he wishes that thing could go back to the way they were, with Dawn dressing like a Portland antique store owner and Al presumably getting mugged every time he rode the subway.

Meanwhile, Ms. Noble asks L-Train, Jamal, and Chris to hold a ladder steady while she attempts to hang a picture of her husband in her classroom.  Unfortunately, because she stupidly asked the three most easily distracted people in the school for help, she falls off the ladder.  The next time we see Ms. Noble, she’s in a wheelchair and L-Train is pushing her around New York.  (How this became L-Train’s job is never really explained.)  L-Train, however, suspects that Ms. Noble can really walk and, as such, he keeps trying to put her into situations designed to get her out of the chair.  He even rolls her up to the roof of the school so that she can watch a limbo contest.  To L-Train’s shock, she doesn’t take part in the contest.  L-Train leaves the roof to try to figure out how his life has come to center around pushing around Ms. Noble.  When he returns to the roof, he is shocked to discover that Ms. Noble can walk and is doing the limbo, albeit by herself.  Ms. Noble taunts L-Train with the fact that she can walk but, when Chris and Jamal step out on the roof, she sits back down.

Seriously, what the heck?  I mean, let’s ignore the fact that Dawn is suddenly a kick ass martial artist.  What’s going on with Ms. Noble!?  This episode actually proves my theory that Ms. Noble is essentially a cult leader who enjoys manipulating her followers.  After three years of her offering encouragement to L-Train, this episode finds her not only manipulating him but also going out of her way to make him look like a liar.  What a terrible principal!  That said, Ms. Noble’s action were just weird enough to make this episode entertaining.

Let’s move on!

Episode 4.19 “Get to Preppin'”

(Dir by Frank Bonner, originally aired on November 25th, 2000)

It’s mid-term time again!

When Chris gets a less than impressive grade on his first test, his father sends him back to prep school.  When Chris realizes that he doesn’t have to work hard in his classes because of his father’s influence, he gets upset because it makes him feel like a spoiled brat and apparently, that’s a bad thing.  Chris demands to go back to Manny High, where he’s actually held responsible for actions.

Ha!  Like that would happen.

Seriously, if I was told that I didn’t have to work at anything when I was 17, crying about it is the last thing I would ever do.

Anyway, Chris’s father returns him to Manny High because, if he didn’t, the name of the show would be changed to City Guy and Jamal would have to host the radio show alone.  As always, the important thing is maintaining the status quo.

One response to “Retro Television Review: City Guys 4.18 “Who Da Man” and 4.19 “Get To Preppin”

  1. Pingback: Lisa Marie’s Week In Review: 4/24/23 — 4/30/23 | Through the Shattered Lens

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