Episode 67 - Send in the Clown
(We start todays episode at Ernie’s Gym and Juice Bar on a bright and sunny Friday afternoon. Kids everywhere were excited to be out of school though the teens of Angel Grove high had even more to look forward to than just the weekend. Inside, Zack, Trini, Billy, Kim and Robbie are inside seated in their usual table discussion some big news; Zack even has a flier in his hand.)
Zack: (reads) Angel Grove High presents: Sophomore prom! Enjoy the halfway mark of your high school career in style with great friends, fancy cuisine and all your favorite hits from a professional DJ.
Kimberly: Ooh; nice!
(Zack continues reading)
Zack: RSVP today – Bring a date!!
Billy: Guess I’m not going.
Trini: Aw… Don’t think that way Billy! I’m sure women are lining out the door to ask you out; they’re all just nervous.
Billy: Thanks mom.
Kimberly: Oh my God I am so excited! So Trini, who’s the lucky guy you’re gonna take?
Trini: (shrugs) Probably no one. I don’t mind going alone as long as I have my friends.
Robbie: Hey, my cousin Hector can take you; he’s always had a thing for you girls.
Trini: Didn’t he stab a guy once?
Robbie: In self-defense.
Trini: No thanks.
Zack: Well, while I do love you guys and all, there ain’t no way the Zack-man is stepping foot into that prom without a fine piece of arm candy. In fact, you can already bet money that I’m scouting for the next prom queen as we speak.
(He scans the room briefly before he finds his next target; a cute, yet brainy looking black girl sitting in a table by herself. He turns on the charm and struts over to her and boldly puts his arms around her chair as she reads a book.)
Zack: (seductively) Hey girl, whatcha reading?
(The girl jumps startlingly.)
Girl: Oh! …uhh… I’m just studying for my Spanish final.
Zack: Oh nice; I was thinking of learning a new language myself… English just isn’t cutting it for me.
(She returns to her book indifferently. Zack quickly starts to fumble.)
Zack: Oh… you might ask why. I-it’s cause u and I aren’t together. (Nervously smiles) He-he… you get it? You and I like the alphabet but y-you and…
Girl: (nods) I get it; very cute.
Zack: Oh… thank… you?
Girl: Now please get your arm off my chair, before I separate it from your body… just like U and I.
(She returns to the book casually, leaving a horrified Zack just standing there. Dejectedly, he heads back to his friends, but tries to keep a smile on his face.)
Robbie: How’d it go?
Zack: Picking her up at seven!
(Billy slaps him five.)
Zack: It’s a gift! Maybe I’ll show you some tricks sometime?
Kimberly: Wow; that was actually impressive Zack; you got a date before me?
Trini: What? You mean Tommy hasn’t asked you out yet?
(Kim just shakes her head as her expression turns more serious.)
Kimberly: We haven’t even spoken much the last couple weeks. He’s been more interested in his karate than anything else. Afterschool he just sort of heads to his dojo and he stays there till late at night. And now he’s gone for the weekend for this tournament in Texas. He actually just told me this today too… he’s been like this way since he… you know…
(There were too many people around to actually say ‘lost his powers’, but the others get the gist.)
Robbie: Well, maybe he’s just bummed about what happened? Maybe he’s just trying to use martial arts as a way to get his mind off things.
Billy: Yeah, give him some time. I’m sure he’ll be alright.
Kimberly: I hope; it’d be nice to just see him actually.
(A sudden rustling noise is heard from the front entrance which quickly gets her attention. However it turns out to just be Jason walking in. He looks stressed out about something as he holds some sheets of paper, though none of them look like prom fliers.)
Kimberly: Oh hey Jason.
Jason: Hey guys.
(He even seemed preoccupied in his response before taking his usual seat in the middle of the table.)
Billy: You alright Jason? You appear frazzled.
Jason: (sighs) I’m alright… I’ve just been in the library all day studying my butt off for these finals and I still not embedded into my brain yet.
Zack: Don’t stress finals so much yet dude; not with prom around the corner. You should be worrying about finding yourself a girl… you know, before I take them all.
Jason: (shakes head) I doubt I’m even going to the prom.
Zack: (shocked) What?! Why not?
Jason: My old man wants my priority to be getting straight A’s. He’s really starting to ride me about it too since my midterms weren’t that great. He wants me to follow this proud Scott tradition of getting into Ivy League and becoming doctors or lawyers.
Robbie: But he’s a mechanic.
Jason: Yeah. And believe me; a day doesn’t go by where he doesn’t remind me of this and his ‘wasted youth.’ He even wants me to find a job, so I doubt I’ll even be free for the prom anyway.
Kimberly: A job? You’re sixteen. Doesn’t he know that that can hurt your grades if anything?
Jason: (shrugs) He thinks it’ll teach me responsibility and he won’t take no for an answer.
Zack: Leading a team of vigilante superheroes isn’t enough responsibility for a 16 year old?
Kimberly: Totally; these should be the greatest years of your life Jason, you’re gonna waste them away with a mindset like that. You’ve got to do something; maybe talk to your mom?
Jason: (shakes head) She’ll just guilt trip me. That woman’s made police officers cry.
Trini: Well, if it’s a job you need, McDaniel’s is hiring. My cousin Samantha works there and she said they want a weekend person. It’s easy work and her boss loves her; so he’d give anyone who she referred an interview on the spot.
Jason: McDaniel’s…? Eh… I’m not sure. I don’t really care for fast food.
Zack: I LOVE McDaniel’s, I’ll apply if they want a person. Papa needs some new dreads.
Robbie: I’ll say; there’s more black in Zack’s closet than in Roots.
Robbie: You didn’t se… Never mind; sign me up too.
Jason: (sighs) Fine; me three. It’ll get my dad off my back at least.
Trini: Great! I’ll go give her a call.
(Later in the day, we find Jason, Zack and Robbie sitting inside the dingy looking, half empty burger joint close to the school. Of the three, Jason appears the most prepared with a nice slacks, a white collared shirt and a red tie. His hair neatly combed as he anxiously looks over his resume. In contrast, Robbie sits right across from him and looks as if he just rolled out of bed. He does appear less anxious though, but not as much as Zack who seems way more occupied reading the graffiti etched into the table.)
Zack: ‘Rate Kimberly Hart’s butt from one to ten.’
Zack: Someone wrote that on the table. All around it are all these different numbers.
Robbie: Let me see.
(Robbie leans over.)
Zack: 10, 8, 10…
Zack: (shakes head) White boys…
Robbie: I know…
(The boys hear a voice call to them as they stop what they’re doing.)
“ Hey fellas, glad you could make it!”
(They turn their heads to follow the gruff voice and find a heavy set man coming toward them with clipboard in hand. Jason wastes no time setting a good first impression as he gets up and extends his hand. The man wipes his sweaty palm on his shirt before he shakes.)
Stephen: Thank you! Before we begin let me introduce myself. My name is Stephen and I’ve been a proud McDaniel’s employee for over 15 years.
Zack: WOW! You’ve been here almost as long as we’ve been alive.
Stephen: That’s right. I love it that much; in fact, I was just a little older than you guys when I started as a simple cashier. I was just a kid on the streets up to no good before McDaniel’s took me in. And with a little hard work and dedication I moved up the totem pole and just last year got my very first store. Hopefully, this will be the start of your journey as well.
Robbie: Great. I’ve got 15 years to kill, let’s do it!
Stephen: Okay, who’s up first?
(Cut to Stephen sitting down with Jason first in a two seat table. Jason sits up straight with his hands folded.)
Stephen: So Jason, why do you want to work at McDaniel’s?
Jason: Well, I’ve always loved McDaniel’s since I was a little boy. And when I heard you guys were hiring I saw it as a great new opportunity I couldn’t pass up.
(He nods approvingly as we cut to Zack being asked the same question.)
Zack: I need money my dude. Plus it never hurts to dip my pen in the company ink. Feel me?
(Cut to Robbie being asked the same question.)
Robbie: To unionize the workers!
(Cut back to Jason as Stephen asks his next question.)
Stephen: So what would you say is your greatest strength?
Jason: That’s got to be my ability to stay calm under pressure as well as the ability to lead by example.
(Cut to Robbie.)
(Cut to Zack.)
Stephen: So Zackary, what would you say is your greatest strength?
(Without saying a word, Zack pulls out his chair and gets up from his seat to find an open space. A bemused manager wonders what’s going on before Zack breaks into dance.)
Stephen: I see.
(Cut back to Jason as Stephen begins his next question.)
Stephen: So tell me what your greatest weakness is.
(Jason strategically sighs and bows his head.)
Jason: Sometimes I tend to work too hard to accomplish a goal without seeing the big picture; I’m just such a perfectionist.
(Stephen nods sympathetically and puts his hand on his shoulder.)
Stephen: I’m the same way.
(Cut to Zack being asked the same question.)
Zack: Black girls.
(Cut to Robbie.)
Stephen: So tell me what your greatest weakness is.
Robbie: I sometimes tend to call things like I see them.
Stephen: Well you know what? I like employees who speak their minds.
Robbie: That’s stupid.
(Cut back to Jason as the interview is wrapping up.)
Stephen: Finally, where do you see yourself in five years?
Jason: Climbing the McDaniel’s ladder.
(Cut to Zack.)
Zack: Delivering my first child with my beautiful wife, Mrs. Janet Jackson-Taylor.
(Cut to Robbie who nods proudly.)
Robbie: Graduating high school.
(Cut back to Stephen sitting with Jason as he gathers his notes.)
Stephen: Alright, well everything checks out. You seem like a nice kid and your availability is just what I need. My last question would have to be… can you start tomorrow?
(Jason’s eyes suddenly light up.)
Jason: Yeah, absolutely!
Stephen: Great, then welcome aboard.
(A thrilled Jason leaps out of his seat and extends his hand to his new store manager. He wasn’t the only one trilled about it either; from her giant telescope on the moon, Rita Repulsa and her right hand man Goldar appear happy to see him get himself out of the way.)
Rita: So the red ranger’s joined the work force. Maybe we should go down and congratulate him!
Goldar: I worked at McDaniel’s once; not surprisingly I was the most civil person there.
Rita: Possibly the most attractive too.
Goldar: But we can take advantage of the red rangers’ new job and use it to destroy his weaker friends.
Rita: I’m listening…
Goldar: When I worked for them, I was always given these crazy hours and always got out late. If Jason’s too busy at work, he won’t be able to save the others should we attack them. They’re already short the green ranger and Jason is the backbone of the group; without him they’ll crumble just like those cheap cookies McDaniel’s sell.
Goldar: All we need to do is send down a monster that can outsmart the rest of them.
Rita: (scoffs) And you think Finster can do that? I’ve seen plates of spaghetti smarter than any of his creations.
Goldar: Then perhaps it is time we look elsewhere; this opportunity is too great to pass up! I promise you, this is fool proof.
Rita: Alright, but this better work Goldar!
Goldar: When have I ever let you down?
Rita: (groans) I’m gonna regret this…
(The following day, Jason returns to McDaniel’s in full uniform for his first day of work. He’s in the back office clipping on his nametag over his apron as Stephen goes over the rules.)
Stephen: So during each 8 hour shift, you’re allowed one ten minute rest period and a 30 minute lunch.
Stephen: You’ll start out as predominantly a cashier, although you’ll learn a little of everything during your development. Today, I’m going to have Samantha just walk you through everything. She’s one of my favorite little sparkplugs and she’s a great trainer. Just wished she’s stop wandering off the floor in the middle of rushes.
Jason: Uh… cool. Where is she by the wa…
(Jason jumps as a slender, excitable young girl sneaks up and pokes him unexpectedly.)
Stephen: Wandering off the floor in the middle of a rush.
(She playfully sticks her tongue out at Stephen.)
Samantha: Wrong again Stephen; there’s no one out there!
Stephen: Glad to see I’m making progress.
(She turns her head back to Jason and adjusts her glasses before sizing him up with a sly grin on her face.)
Samantha: Welcome newbie; ready to start our tour of the wonderful world of McDaniel’s?
(She grabs him by the arm before he can even answer and enthusiastically pulls him into the front lobby.)
Stephen: Have fun you two.
Samantha: So you’re cousin Trini’s friend she asked me to refer? She said there’d be more of you but I guess they weren’t hired.
Jason: I guess not.
Samantha: (smiles) But I bet you’re the cute one she told me about.
Jason: (laughs) Aww, I never knew Trini felt that way about me… Oh, I’m Jason by the way, pleasure to meet you Samantha.
Samantha: Please, call me Sammy.
Jason: Okay, Sammy. So are you this charming to all the new employees, or am I special?
(It takes her a while to realize that Jason’s flirting with her, but when it hit her, she grins, turned bright red and starts giggling like a school girl.)
Sammy: You’re silly!! Come on, let me show you around.
(He followed her around the front lobby as she began a spiel she was obviously trained to say by the company.)
Sammy: Okay so in order to optimize the customer experience, every thirty minutes one of us needs to do a complete bus of the lobby; that includes (but isn’t limited to), Sweeping and mopping the floors if necessary, wiping down all tables and clearing them of any garbage. The condiment station must also be restocked as well as the restrooms.
(Jason nods as Sammy tries to sand still despite looking ready to burst.)
Jason: Seems simple enough.
Sammy: Do you have a motorcycle?
(She slaps her forehead and nervously backtracks.)
Sammy: Oh, I’m sorry… was that random? It didn’t seem so in my head. You just seem like the type of guy to own one; you don’t have to answer any of my questions…
Jason: No it’s cool; and no, but my dad owns one and usually when my grades are up he lets me ride around the block on it.
Sammy: (Gushes) Oh my God; that is sooooo cool!
(Jason scratches his head.)
Jason: You’re not a lot like your cousin, are you?
Sammy: Is that bad? Cause cousin Trini is amazing; she’s so smart and mature…
Jason: I didn’t mean it like that; you seem pretty cool yourself. Maybe after finals I can take you for a spin?
(She tries very poorly to hide her excitement as she tries to move on.)
Sammy: Sure; that’s be good. Let’s go to the backline now.
(He follows her to the employee entrance to the backline in the very corner where they are in full view of all the registers, machinery and employees.)
Sammy: Okay so this is the back where all the work is done. I’ll show you how to work everything but today you’ll be focusing mostly on register.
(She points to the registers where they see a dark skinned, athletic looking male handling a small line by himself.)
Jason: Who’s he?
Sammy: That’s Kevin; he’s one of the supervisors here. I don’t really like him.
Sammy: Well, you’ll find out once you start working here; I don’t want to feel negatively about your job on the very first day.
Jason: Okay. I unders….
Sammy: (interrupts) He’s such a power hungry jerk though! I mean when the boss isn’t around he swears he runs the place and starts ordering people around like he isn’t making eight bucks an hour. He’s Stephen’s golden boy too so he thinks he’s God’s gift to McDaniel’s.
Jason: Well if he’s that good, I guess he’s earned the right to be a little confident.
Sammy: Doesn’t earn you the right to sleep with your employees.
Sammy: Yeah, he messed around with a new girl Stephanie as he was training her, but since that ended all they do is argue on the job. That didn’t stop him from nailing Ellie though; consider yourself lucky he’s not training you.
Jason: So he’s one of THOSE supervisors.
Sammy: Get used to it; they all abuse their power one way or another. Wait till you meet Sean who drinks on the job, or Rosalina Valdez who’s threatened by all male employees; I like her though.
(Jason just quietly shakes his head. Sammy realizes she’s being too negative and again backtracks.)
Sammy: Ugh I’m sorry… I’m making you hate this job am I?
Jason: No… no. I’m just here to work hard and go home; nothing else.
Sammy: Great; me too! Alright… let me show you the registers.
(She takes him by the hand and skips over to the leftmost till; furthest away from Kevin the supervisor. Almost on cue though a rush of people burst through the door and fill up the empty lobby. Sammy quickly gets antsy and nervously tries to rush Jason through the next step.)
Sammy: Uh oh… uhm well… here’s the register. Here’s where you… uh…. First you log in and…
Kevin: (urgently) Sammy, I need you on fries; line’s out the door.
(She sighs frustratingly and rolls her eyes at him; but begrudgingly follows.)
Sammy: (Sighs) I’m sorry Jason, I’ll be right back; Stephen thinks were slacking if we leave a line waiting for too long.
Jason: I understand. What do you want me to do in the meanwhile?
(Kevin steps in.)
Kevin: Ring up.
Jason: What?! I have no clue how this works!
Sammy: Uhm… it’s easy; just punch in your employee numbers to log in than take their orders. Everything has its own button so just look for it. Good luck.
Jason: Good luck?
Sammy: I know, but..
Kevin: (Sternly) Samantha; I won’t tell you again.
(She groans as she heads back to her station, leaving Jason completely in over his head. He fumbles to just log in a line of already impatient customers build in front of him. His voice shudders as he calls over his first customer.)
Jason: Uh… next customer, please step down.
(A burly construction worker with a thick Brooklyn accent steps down and starts his order in mid-sentence; appearing to order for the whole crew.)
Customer: …12 double cheesy hamburgers; 5 of them combos, two with pickles, 2 without pickles and one with extra pickles.
Jason: (nervously) Alright, j-just hang on one second…
Customer: (continues) …6 of them with large fries; 2 with nuggets and the rest with onion rings.
Jason: You gotta slow down…
Customer: And I also want 7 large colas, one ginger ale, 2 root beers and 2 bottled waters. To go please; I’m in a rush.
(Jason just stares blankly at the screen as if were in another language. He finally throws his arms up and turns to his supervisor.)
Jason: Hey Kev, where can I find… double cheesy hamburgers.
Customer: Are you kidding me? You didn’t get any of that!? What are you a friggen idiot?!
Jason: No… it’s just my first day.
Customer: Don’t they train you? I only have 30 minutes to get this order back and you’re gonna make me…
(Before the man can finish his rant an angry woman walks up to the register.)
Woman: Excuse me sir? There is a homeless man pleasuring himself next to me and my kids in the dining area. I asked him to stop and he just told me to ‘give him a minute.’
Customer: (belligerently) ARE YOU LISTENING TO ME?!
(Suddenly, customers in line behind the big man start speaking out.)
“What’s the hold up here?!”
“Is this guy new or something?’”
“Come on honey, let’s go to Patty King.”
Kevin: Let’s go Jason, lines out the door!
(The situation quickly gets out of hand as an unprepared Jason feels thrown to the wolves. Quickly he withdraws, breathes deeply and puts both his hands over his face as the screen fades to black. We fade into the next day at the Juice Bar, where the rangers are back in their usual table; all of them casually slurping on drinks. All except Jason, who still had his hands over his face.)
Kimberly: Did you have a good first day?
Zack: I meant to stop by and pay you a visit. The place was a madhouse though so I kept moving; figured you were busy.
Billy: Is everything alright?
Jason: It was awful… just awful.
Trini: Why? Was my cousin mean to you?
Jason: No… she was really nice to me. But everything else was terrible. The customers are savages, yet I was just abandoned on register. Nobody seemed to want to help me learn. Other than your cousin, everyone seemed so unapproachable; all they did was snicker and mutter stuff under their breath when I’d mess up.
Robbie: Well you smell really nice.
Jason: The funny thing is my dad was so proud of me when I got home. He even offered to take me out for a steak, but I was so drained, I fell asleep before I even could change out of my uniform.
Trini: Don’t worry Jason, everyone’s first day is rough, you’re a resilient guy though and I’m sure you’ll pick things up in no time. It’ll get easier.
Jason: Thanks. I work with Sammy tonight so I guess we’ll just have to study the registers some more.
Zack: Just don’t study yourself out; you have a big history test first thing in the morning.
(Jason slaps his forehead.)
Jason: Arrg I completely spaced!! And I slept through the whole day yesterday and I get out of work late tonight. Man one day and this stupid job’s taking over my life.
Robbie: That’s why I’m unemployed.
Jason: I know what to do; I’ll ask my boss if maybe I could leave a little early. He’s a nice guy, he’ll understand.
(Cut back to the McDaniel’s back office where Jason’s desperate plea is met with an eyebrow raise.)
Stephen: I don’t understand.
Jason: I have a big test in the morning, and I really need to study for it. Would it be at all possible to leave just a little early just this once? Just an hour or two; that’s all I need.
(He scratches his head and lets out a frustrated sigh.)
Stephen: Jason, when I hired you, I asked if these hours were okay and you told me they were.
Jason: They are… just not tonight.
Stephen: I’m really sorry Jason; I don’t think I can help you; this is too short a notice.
Jason: But you have to understand; I’m on the honor roll and my dad…
(He cuts Jason off with a more stern, authoritative voice.)
Stephen: I’m sorry, but there’s nothing I can do. It’s great that you’re an honor roll student; however when you’re in here, your school is McDaniel’s. Anything other than that is of no concern to me; do I make myself clear?
Stephen: Excellent; now go get ready, you start in ten minutes.
Jason: (sighs) I need some air…
(As Jason steps outside after his plan flopped, Rita is in the middle of putting her plan together.)
Rita: The red ranger is about to start work; now’s our time to attack. All I need is a monster.
(She reaches for her telescope and begins her search. She looks through various locations in Angel Grove for something that catches her eye from the dark woods to the local swamp. Eventually she finds herself in town where she settles back outside of Jason’s McDaniel’s. She spots him slouching underneath a statue of the company’s iconic mascot when her eyes shoot wide open.)
Rita: That! Who’s that clown outside of McDaniel’s?!
Scorpina: That’s Danny McDaniel my empress; the beloved clown of the company and brain dead children everywhere.
Baboo: I love Danny McDaniel!!!
Scorpina: Of course you do.
(Rita snaps her fingers.)
Rita: He’s perfect! Send down the putties and get me that clown!
(Back on Earth, a frustrated Jason remains slouched by the statue as he begins to worries about his future and what his father might say continue to swirl in his head.)
Jason: So much for thinking he cared about me… I feel so dehumanized right now; like what I care about doesn’t even matter so long as I’m fulfilling everyone’s wishes.
Jason: I’ve been feeling that way for a while actually.
(He grimaces at the realization like a punch in the face. He starts to wonder about the direction he’s going in his life and how he’s just allowing it. Unfortunately, he won’t have the time just now to solve anything.)
Jason: (springs up) Putties!!
(A horde of putties appear from the sky and quickly surround the red ranger and the statue.)
Jason: (groans) Great; just what I needed right now…
(He angrily slams his work hat on the floor and he gets in his fighting stance. The putties waste no time as they begin to charge at him. But Jason quickly lands a roundhouse kick to the first one to get near him before it’s able to even throw a punch. He nearly gets blindsided though from his right with a wild swing, but Jason’s able to catch it and swiftly answer back with a hard punch in the gut. He then twists his arm; causing him to roll to the floor and lands a second punch to the gut for good measure before the putty could even winch in pain.)
Jason: Supersized on the house!!
(Suddenly though he’s caught off guard by two putty patrollers who grab hold of his arms and start tossing him around like a ragdoll. He struggles to keep his balance though one the last overzealous pull and one on the right loses grip. Jason capitalizes with a spinning heel kick that nearly knocks the left one’s head off. The turns around and used both hands to grab the other and using all his strength, literally tosses him over his head as he lands with a loud thud on top of a parked car. He turns around to see the hacksaw wielding putty eye the Danny McDaniel statue for a bit before putting the blade to its feet to try and cut it down.)
Jason: Hey! Stop that!
(He makes a b-line to try and save the clown but barricades of other foot soldiers throw themselves in his way. He tries to break through them, but is quickly outnumbered and shoved backwards. Realizing he’s short on time, he leaps over the crowd and without turning backwards, lands a hard enough kick to one of them that it takes down the whole pack with him He makes a B line for the statue but he’s too little, too late. The putties are able to remove it from its mantle and quickly disappear before Jason reaches them. He turns his head to see that the others have vanished as well.)
Jason: (furiously) They got away! Man this day just keeps getting worse. What could they even want with that thing?
(He looks around helplessly before checking his watch and realizing he’s about to run late for work. He reaches for his hat before dusting it off and rushing back inside. Meanwhile, back on the moon, the castle is now pitch black; being lit only by a row of candles surrounding the cold metal bed in which the statue lies on. Rita appears before it and begins to summon the evil spirits from within her crystal ball.)
Rita: I call forth the evil spirits; Yoo yaaam shoooo… Shabo!!
(Thunder claps as Rita continues her spell.)
Rita: Bring my statue to life… bring the rangers fright… humsha nooooo Shambo!!
(Her crystal ball, which is shaped into a skull lights up from the eyes, when suddenly the entire castle quakes from the core of the moon.)
Rita: Make my clown sick and demented. Seek out and destroy the black, blue, brown, yellow and pink rangers as well as any civilian that it must to accomplish this goal. Yoo yaaam shoooo… Shabo!!
(Lightning strikes the outside of the castle, sending an electrical current charge through the walls that surges into the metal bed. The statue quivers violently as it slowly comes to life.)
Goldar: It’s working; excellent!
Rita: Now to destroy the other rangers…
Goldar: And make them cry the tears of a clown.
(A third laugh is heard, startling the two of them.)
“Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha,ha, ha…”
Rita: Woah! What was that?!
Goldar: I don’t know, but I think it’s coming from the bed.
(They both turn to the bed as the laugher grows louder and more forced.)
“…ha, ha, ha, ho, ho, ho, he, he, he.”
(The monster finally awakens; suddenly sitting itself up before staring coldly into the eyes of Goldar.)
Danny McDaniel: And I thought my jokes were bad.
(A little later in the day, we catch Robbie, Trini and Kim at the park, sitting under a tree to get some shade as they get some last minute studying done for their big test tomorrow. Kimberly stops momentarily to look up and see Zack and Billy several yards away by the tennis courts.)
Kimberly: What are those two up to?
Trini: Oh, Zack’s trying to help Billy… ‘Score a hotty for prom.’
Robbie: It’s like getting weight loss advice from a fat guy.
Kimberly: Hey at least they’re trying.
(She turns to Trini.)
Kimberly: I feel sorrier for Jason than anything. Poor guy doesn’t even have the time to find a girl.
(Robbie comments without even lifting his head from his textbook.)
Robbie: Really hard to make the time when you like men.
Trini: Well, he IS under a lot of pressure. I mean he’s got these absurd standards his father set for him with school, he’s started a new job just yesterday and on top of that he’s the leader of the power rangers.
Kimberly: Poor guy’s swamped. I really wish he’d just stand up to his dad and just tell him enough is enough. Jason’s more than responsible enough for his age; he doesn’t need to be pushed so hard.
Trini: I agree. He needs to start following his heart and do what he wants to do.
Kimberly: Yeah, that or ask Zordon for a raise.
Robbie: Careful now, we’re non-union.
Kimberly: Well, something needs to be done.
(Robbie finally picks his head up and turns to Trini.)
Robbie: Hey, I thought you weren’t taking anybody to the dance?
Trini: I’m not. But that’s cause I’ve just been doing my own thing for so long and have been so busy in my responsibility as a ranger, that I just sort of have no interest in anyone right now.
Robbie: How is that any different?
Trini: Cause I love being a ranger; no one pushed me into it. And I love being around you and the others so much that it just doesn’t matter to me.
Robbie: That’s really sweet.
Trini: I just wanna have a good time with my friends I don’t care if I have no chance to be prom queen.
Robbie: Well… I wouldn’t say you have no chance.
Trini: (smiles) Thanks, but it doesn’t matter to me. Though if someone nice asked me, I’d listen to my heart and go from there. Why, do you know a guy?
Robbie: Oh… well…
(Suddenly, Robbie’s eyes shoot wide open.)
Robbie: Look out!!!
(The girls instinctively dive to the floor as well as Robbie who at the last second saw something coming straight for their heads. They avoided harm, but the tree wasn’t as lucky as bark scatters everywhere.)
Robbie: You girls okay?
Trini: I’m fine; what was that?
(The commotion caught the attention of Zack and Billy who were in the middle of talking to a woman. They quickly excuse themselves and head over to check on their friends.)
Zack: What’s going on?
Robbie: I don’t know, but something nearly killed us.
(Zack notices the huge hole in the tree and examines it. He sees something very thin sticking out of it before pulling it out.)
Zack: Looks like a queen of spades…
Billy: A card?
“Darn, I missed.”
Trini: Huh? Who said that?
(The rangers turn their heads to where they heard the voice coming from and see this mysteriously tall and lanky figure staring back at them.)
Danny McDaniel: Can you be a sport and bring that back to me?
(The whole group suddenly becomes alarmed and gets up to face him in unison.)
Robbie: Who are you?
(Zack steps forward.)
Zack: Here, this might give us a clue.
(He flips the card over to reveal just what Zack described, a Queen of spades. Except, for one noticeable difference, where the queen would be, was a photo of Rita Repulsa.)
Trini: He’s one of Rita’s!
Danny McDaniel: I wanted a joker card, but it seems someone else took them all…
(As he limps closer to them, they make note of his stringy red hair that looks like it hadn’t met a comb in weeks as well as the faded white face paint on the face that had a cold cynical stare and the meanest of mugs. The weirdest part was it looked like somebody, perhaps even himself, had tried to carve a smile where his cheeks are, leaving grotesque looking scars.)
Danny McDaniel: Let me introduce myself… it is I; Danny Hubert McDaniel; king of McDaniel land and spreader of joy… (Cough) and diabetes
(cough), to the wonderful children of America!
Robbie: I hate these stupid attempts at avoiding copyright laws….
Zack: Come on guys, its morphin time!
Trini: Saber-Toothed Tiger!
(The five rangers leap into action and land directly across from the enemy ready to fight; although McDaniel doesn’t seem to care very much.)
Danny McDaniel: (gasp) The power rangers! Well if we aren’t all just a five year olds wet dream?!
Danny McDaniel: (continues) And speaking of five year olds, my son LOVES you guys! He even made me go out and buy every single one of your figures and your giant robots…
Kimberly: What’s this guy going on about?
Billy: I don’t know.
(He winces a little before pointing at Robbie.)
Danny McDaniel: I couldn’t find your toy however, not sure why.
Robbie: Alright, enough talk; down with this clown!
(They charge at him, but before the reach him he opens the left side of his jacket, revealing about a dozen live grenades all tied to a single string wrapped around his index finger. They stop dead in their tracks.)
Zack: Everyone stop!!
Danny McDaniel: (menacingly) I may be crazy, but I’m far, FAR from stupid. So if you like your precious park, I recommend you think twice about what you’re about to do…
(He looks at his wrist watch.)
Danny McDaniel: Well, I wish I could sit around and chat, but it’s getting late. But I’ve got some friends you guys can talk to in the mean while… now, send in the clowns!
(He claps his hand, summoning from far away a very small car that the rangers spot swerving clumsily there way, scaring off anyone in its way. Eventually it parks itself next to McDaniel and just before he runs off, the door swings open, revealing a massive hoard of clowns squeezing out of that tight space.)
Trini: More clowns? Great, how are we gonna handle this.
Billy: (shakes head) They seem to just be putties wearing makeup. Come on, we’ve got to get through them before the real one hurts somebody.
(The rangers try to push through but the clowns create a barricade that’s too great to pass through. They’re left with no choice but to fight and fight quickly.
Zack starts off by anxiously approaching two of them with his hands cautiously up. The first putty-clown takes a swing at him that he manages to dance away from. It takes another which leads Zack right into the arms of an enemy right behind him that tries to lock him in a full nelson. He impulsively jumps out of it though and drills him backwards with a kick to the chest. He turns around to see three more headed his way in three different directions. Without much time to waste, he leaps backwards and at the right second when they all nearly crash into each other, pulls out his blade blaster and sends one shot that takes all three of them out.
The yellow ranger on the other hand was a bit more aggressive, daringly remaining in one spot and letting her lighting fast chops take down anything that comes near her. One putty-clown does manage to grab her from behind and tries to toss her over his head, but she flips back on her feet and stomps its face down in the dirt before it could get up.
Putty-clowns surround the pink ranger, but she’s more than agile enough to back flip out of harm’s way as they struggle to chase her. She backs up into a tree however as they eventually manage to close in on her. She starts to panic quickly and starts looking around for someplace to go as she’s easily outnumbered. She takes a deep breath before back flipping all the way up the tree and onto a branch. From there she swiftly pulls out her power bow and takes out several of them left and right like ants under a magnifying glass. Then she soars down gracefully and takes out the last one; landing four consecutive kicks in midair.
Finally, Billy is being chased by two of them that he can’t seem to fight off. He tries to keep up with defensive kicks in order to push them off as he decides what to do, but has his leg caught and is flipped backwards and rolls next to his gym bag. Seeing it though gives him a great idea and he quickly rolls near it starts sifting through it, pulling out three apples.)
Billy: Wanna see a neat trick? This one’s called ‘Making the clown disappear.’
(The puzzled putties scratch their heads at one another as he starts to juggle. After a while, the brainless foot soldiers become distracted and start clapping cheerfully at such a neat trick.)
Billy: Robbie NOW!!
(Out of nowhere, the two clown-putties are blasted into a cloud of dust. In the background the black ranger can be seen holding her blade blaster.)
Robbie: TA DA!!!
Billy: Thanks Robbie.
Robbie: Don’t mention iiiii…..
(His words are cut short as two more grab him from behind and manage to wrestle him to the ground. Billy looks around helplessly as he notices that even more putty clowns are rushing out of the car to replace the one’s from before.)
Billy: More of them!
Robbie: Dude, am I tripping or did we just do this already?
(Trini desperately reaches for her communicator.)
Trini: Alpha, Zordon come in! We need help right now; please contact Jason.
Zordon: I am aware of your situation and am attempting to contact him as we speak but thus far I am unable to reach him.
Trini: Well keep trying; I’m afraid he’s gonna hurt someone while he has us occupied with putties.
Zordon: I’m on it.
(Zordon continues to try and reach Jason while the others struggle to get their situation under control. Unfortunately, back at McDaniel’s, their leader, as well as everyone on staff seem to be running around like a chicken with his heads cut off during a late afternoon rush and he doesn’t even seem to be wearing his communicator. )
Large woman: My husband and I want two Jumbo Macs with large fries…
(The large woman studies the menu as Jason impatiently watches the line get bigger.)
Large woman: You know what, can you supersize those fries?
Large woman: Is that the biggest size you’ve got?
Jason: Supersize? Yes.
Large woman: Are you sure? Can you ask your manager?
Jason: It’s the largest size miss.
Large woman: Alright, make it four then. Also give me two chicken fingers for me.
Jason: Got it. Is there anything else?
Large woman: Onion rings for him, large please. And he wanted me to ask if the apple pies are any good?
Jason: They’re okay.
Large woman: Just okay? Alright, we’ll try three. Oh and two large diet colas please.
Jason: We’re out of diet cola.
Large woman: YOU’RE WHAT?!
(Before he can explain, Rosalina the supervisor ferociously throws a bag of food in the counter in front of him.)
Rosalina: This was supposed to be a number 1 without cheese and a medium fries NOT small and…
(She reaches into the bag and pulls out the half unwrapped burger before opening it up.)
Rosalina: Tell me what’s in here?
Rosalina: Straight from the cow’s teat! Get it right newbie; you’re holding us back.
Jason: Geez, alright I’m sorry.
(An irritable customer standing in line in a business suit holding a cell phone speaks up.)
Business man: What’s the hold up here; I’m double parked!
Rosalina: (belligerently) NO ONE TOLD YOU TO DOUBLE PARK!!
Business man: …
(Sammy steps forward from the fry section with a concerned look on her face.)
Sammy: Is everything okay? What’s wrong Rosa?
Jason: It’s okay Sam…
Rosalina: The new guy keeps making mistakes and it’s getting on my last nerve; I’m getting sick of getting yelled at by customers for him.
Sammy: He won’t get any better if you keep shouting at him.
(A disgusted looking man steps in from the lobby.)
Man: Excuse me, but there’s a homeless man pleasuring himself in the lobby…
Sammy: (Dismissively) Just give him a minute sir…
(She turns back to Rosalina.)
Sammy: Want to cover fries for me while I help him out on register? At least until we kill the line.
(She marches away as Sammy assigns the register next to him and starts helping him through the line. A little later, once everything slows down and the rush has ended, Sammy finds time to talk to a defeated looking Jason.)
Sammy: How are you feeling Jason?
Jason: I’m okay. That rush beat the crap out of me though.
Sammy: Yeah, it did.
Jason: And it didn’t help that I just kept making one mistake after another. And every time I’d make a mistake, someone on staff has to make it a point to shove my nose in it.
Sammy: Sadly, that happens a lot in food service; you don’t always get the most mature people in the world. But Jason, you’ll get it. And I promise I’ll beat up anyone who’s mean to you.
Jason: (laughs) Thanks. That solves one problem. Now just to find some studying time and I’ll be set.
Sammy: You’re still in school?
Jason: Well, yeah. Isn’t everyone here?
(She shakes her head.)
Sammy: No. Well, I am and I’m barely allowed to work more than 20 hours per week, I’m barely a good student as it is, but everyone else either dropped out or graduated high school and just sort of wandered off after that. Rosalina tried college, but then got pregnant and took this job to pay for it.
Jason: Interesting. I’m on my school’s honor roll.
Sammy: Woah! You’re incredible; most of these guys couldn’t spell honor roll. That really leads me to ask again why you’re here? Work and school together is just way too much responsibility at once.
Jason: Well my dad sort of pushed me into this job. He says it builds character, but you’re right, it’s really hard to get any studying done when I’m here all day cleaning up after the homeless.
Sammy: Well then, why don’t you quit?
Sammy: (shrugs) Quit. You know what you need more than your dad does; and this place will only hold you back.
Jason: I guess, but my dad’s finally proud of me for something, I can’t let him down… and Stephen.
Jason: What’s so funny?
Sammy: You’re silly… this is a nothing job; don’t take it seriously. If you were a nobody who had nothing else going for him but to climb the McDaniel’s ladder that’s one thing, but you’re clearly a very nice, smart and talented guy who has the World in front of him; don’t do your future a disservice in this dump, talk to your dad and follow your heart.
Jason: (snickers) Trini, when did you get here?
Sammy: (giggles) Sorry… unsolicited advice runs in the family.
Jason: No, it’s great advice. Thanks so much Sammy; I think I will ‘follow my heart.’
Jason: Speaking of which... Sammy, if you don’t mind… may I ask you something… important?
Jason: Well, it’s just that there’s this… prom coming up in my school and well I’m supposed to look for someone to take.
(A smile comes to her face and her eyes light up as she can predict what he’s going to ask her.)
Jason: And well… I was just… wondering if…
(Just before Jason could finish his sentence, he is cut off by a loud, yet familiar cackle.)
Jason: Oh crap…
Skull: Hey Bulkie! Look, one of the dweebs work here!
(He turns his head to the front door to see just the people he was hoping would never show up here. Bulk continues in a condescending voice.)
Bulk: Well, well, well… what do we have here?
Jason: May I help you?
Bulk: May you? Boy, is that an understatement! Your existence is finally useful to us; why, we come here all the time.
Sammy: You know these two?
(Bulk and Skull step forward and eye his uniform.)
Bulk: Loving the hat and apron gig; it really suits a muscle head like you.
Jason: Look if you guys don’t mind, I’ve had a really long day. Can you guys just order your food and leave?
(The two look at one another and gasp with faux-shocked looks on their face.)
Skull: Why is that any way to talk to a customer?
Bulk: I don’t think so. And I just so happen to have this store manager’s number on speed dial so unless you want some trouble, I suggest you fix the attitude and serve us with the legendary McDaniel’s attitude.
Jason: Look I’m sorry, I’ve just…
Bulk: You’ve just nothing. You listen to me burger boy, we aren’t in school and you aren’t surrounded by your dweeb friends and that annoying principle. In this world, I’m the boss. You know why? Cause the customer’s always right. That means I can ask for whatever I want, whenever I want and talk to you any way I feel like and you can’t do a thing about it but smile and fetch me my burger. Now be a good boy and fetch me a burger.
(Bulk reaches over the counter to pat an irate Jason over the head, who’s just about had enough.)
Jason: ALRIGHT THAT’S IT! YOU’RE OUT OF HERE!!
Bulk: (stunned) Huh?
Skull: (stunned) What?
Jason: You heard me; get out! Both of you; I’m sick of being treated like I’m some walking mat. You treat me with respect and start acting like civilized people, or you get out!!!
(Everyone in the store looks shocked at Jason’s explosion; including Samantha who just kinda stands by awkwardly. Stephen hears the ruckus going on from the back and peaks his head on the floor.)
Stephen: Is everything alright?
Jason: These two clowns were being disrespectful towards me. But don’t worry, I’ve already told them they aren’t welcomed here anymore.
(Stephen takes a look at the two frozen behind the counter and realizes who they are. Suddenly his brow furrows as he turns to Jason.)
Stephen: Yes, they are Jason.
Jason: Wait, huh?
Stephen: (sternly) They are paying customers and have been for a very long time. You do not have the right to kick them out; I don’t care how they spoke to you.
Skull: You tell him Steve!!
Bulk: OOOOOH You’re in trouble!!!!
Sammy: No Stephen, you don’t understand, they were be…
Stephen: I’m not speaking to you Samantha. Jason, I’m very disappointed in you. Not just for this incident, but your performance to this point overall.
Jason: I don’t believe this…
Stephen: I don’t either. I’m sorry, but I’m just gonna have to let you go.
Jason: Are you… serious?
Stephen: I would never joke about something like this. Go get your belongings and clock out please.
Sammy: B-but… Stephen!!
Stephen: My mind is made up.
(Stephen marches back to his office as Sammy babyishly stamps her feet after him. Jason is left on the floor alone completely speechless and for a minute looks completely devastated. But after a while, he recalls how he’s felt since the first time he was thrown on register untrained and all the times he was yelled at or talked about behind his back because he didn’t know what he was doing. Finally he recalls the talk with Sammy he just had a minute ago, and he smiles. Meanwhile, back on the moon, Rita nods impressively at the early success of Goldar’s plan.)
Rita: I’ve got to hand it to you Goldar, this guy’s wicked; looks like you aren’t as stupid as I thought.
Goldar: Thank you my empress for such high praise; but my work is far from over.
Goldar: I’ve already instructed the clown to lead the other rangers to the edge of town; that is where Scorpina and I will make our moves and ambush those leaderless rangers.
Scorpina: That’s right!
Rita: I love it!
(Back in the park, the rangers are still caught up with the putties as Danny McDaniel storms through the park in search of some children. He wanders by a nearby playground and it isn’t long before some children recognize him.)
Small boy: Danny!!!!
Small girl: (gasp) Danny McDaniel!!! It’s Danny McDaniel!!
(Despite his grotesque appearance, the children only see his resemblance to their favorite clown.Weary parents aren’t bought that easily though and warn their children away from him. A few ignore their parent’s advice and try to hug him anyway. As soon as one gets close to him, he grabs him quickly and pulls out a blade; immediately scaring off everyone else and sending his parents into a panic.)
Danny McDaniel: Shh, shhhhh…. Everyone calm down! As long as I get exactly what I want, the little boy won’t get hurt.
Father: Let my son go now you creep!!
Danny McDaniel: Creep?! My no, you’ve got it all wrong… though I suppose the clown costume in the playground might not look good. I’m not here to ‘creep’ on anyone. I just want… to show you guys a trick.
(He waves his knife around the petrified boys face.)
Danny: I’m going to make this knife… disappear!
Zack: Like Hell you are!!
(Danny McDaniel groans as the rangers make their way through the crowd of putties and put themselves directly across from Rita’s monster.)
Zack: Let him go.
Danny McDaniel: You can hurt me all you’d like Power Rangers. You can out muscle me and beat the make-up off my face, but what would you do when killing me also means killing one of those you are sworn to protect?
(The rangers don’t respond for a while.)
Trini: What are your demands?
Danny McDaniel: Demands? HAHA!! You think this is about demands? You think I, one of Rita’s monsters, care about material possessions? All I want is what I’m about to do: make you look silly! Now, if you don’t mind, the boy and I have a car ride.
Mother: (shrieks) NOOOO!!!!
(McDaniel starts to turn around, but midway through, he stops and turns back; facing everyone. He then takes a second knife from his boot and tosses it to the father.)
Danny McDaniel: Actually, I do have a demand: Kill the power rangers and the boy lives.
(The whole playground gasps; including the rangers.)
Danny McDaniel: Let’s see which is most important to the people of Angel Grove; their love of justice for all or love of justice for themselves.
Kimberly: You’re a monster!
Danny McDaniel: And you’re pretty.
(The father hesitates and just stares at the knife for a bit before looking up and looking at the power rangers longingly. They look back at him as unsure as he is while Zack tries to reason with him.)
Zack: Look man, you don’t have to do this. We will save your son; you’ve just got to believe in us.
Father: But… what if you can’t?
Danny McDaniel: Time’s a wastin’.
Kimberly: You’ve got no guarantee from this guy that harming us will bring your son back in any way. He could just be trying to mess with you.
(He continues to stare at the knife.)
Danny McDaniel: That’s a risk I may have to take.
Robbie: Just teach your next kid to never hug strangers.
Trini: You aren’t helping.
(He looks at it a little more before finally sighing.)
Father: I can’t… do it.
(Robbie turns to Trini?)
Robbie: I’m not?
Father: No, I mean, I can’t do it…. this knife’s rubber.
(He bends the knife and tosses it on the floor. Once the ranger’s realize they’ve been had, they look up and realize something.)
Billy: He’s gone!!
Zack: After him!
(They chase after the evil clown back to where the clown car was last parked. He tosses the frantic boy in the driver seat and starts the engine.)
Danny McDaniel: Buckle up! Gyahahaha!!!!
(He drives off and away from the park just as the rangers reach him.)
Robbie: He’s getting away.
Kimberly: We’ll never catch him on foot.
Zack: We’ve got to save that kid; we just can’t give up.
Kimberly: Man, I wish Jason were here.
(She points at some nearby motorcycles parked by the park exit where the clown car just drove past.)
Trini: Those motorcycles; maybe we can chase him on that.
Billy: Bikes; do the power ranger steal bikes?
Robbie: We do now.
(He runs out ahead of everybody toward the bikes and notices that the engines are still running on a few of them. He hops on the one conveniently colored brown as the others follow suits. Some nearby bikers by a hot dog vendor spot them, but before they could so much as say a word, they were already gone.)
Zack: We’ll bring them back I promise!!
(The scattered bikers chased after the rangers, but after a few seconds were already out of sight as they began their hot pursuit of Danny McDaniel, who was speeding down the road at about 100 MPH and was swerving through PM traffic with a screaming child on board.)
Danny McDaniel: Alright kid… b-be quiet… just, j-just… shhhhh!!!
(But the boys shrieking persisted. It got even worse as the car nearly avoided hitting a car at the intersection.)
Danny McDaniel: Very hard to concentrate on the road with all your shouting little boy. You’re only making it worse for the both of us.
(He looks through his rearview mirror and spots the power rangers, led by Zack on his tail.)
Danny McDaniel: Little boy… please stop.
Danny McDaniel: STOP CRYING OR I SWEAR I WILL TURN THIS CAR AROUND!!!
(He enters a highway having to swerve sharply right and hit the brakes hard after a cab in front of him nearly cuts in his lane.)
Danny McDaniel: Learn to drive!!
(He pulls away from a sea of angry honking cars as he proceeds onto the bridge. The holdup allows the rangers to catch up as they pull up close to him.)
Zack: Pull over now!!
Danny McDaniel: What?
Zack: Pull over!!
(Danny McDaniel points at his ear while shaking his head gesturing that he cannot hear. He lowers the driver side window and sticks his head out.)
Danny McDaniel: What?!
Zack: Pull over!!!
Danny McDaniel: I can’t find a spot!
Robbie: There are plenty of spots. Pull over on the side.
Danny McDaniel: Not enough shade. But wait, how about here?
(Suddenly, he jerks his car to the left, forcing the rangers off balance and causing them to stop before crashing into a minivan filled with children. He speeds off cackling evilly to himself.)
Danny McDaniel: So long, suckers!
(He continues to laugh, but quickly slaps his head as he sees what’s in front of him.)
Danny McDaniel: Crap, a toll…. should’ve asked them for change. Oh well…
(He floors the gas pedal and starts driving at breakneck speed and bursts through the lowered toll block, inciting police attention nearby.)
Danny McDaniel: Oh come on…. (Turns to the boy) if anyone asks, the stash in the glove compartment is yours.
(The petrified boy just stares at him as he begins to swerve violently in order to lose the cops. He nearly kills himself and the boy several times in the process as cars try to shift lanes, not knowing of the psychotic clown on the same road as them. They manage to avoid being hit by him, but some can’t avoid the cop cars ramming them from behind. A single police cruiser manages to avoid any collisions and remains on his tail. McDaniel becomes nervous and fears failing his mission when on a last ditch effort he slams the brakes and makes a sudden U turn against traffic. Without hesitation, he hits the gas again and drives off, leaving the cruiser behind caught up in a cloud of black smog.)
Danny McDaniel: Hehehe that was awesome!
(While still driving against traffic and having not just every car in his way freak out, but the child next to him crying uncontrollably, he rolls down his window to look back at the cop car and stick his tongue out.)
Danny McDaniel: TAKE THAT PIG!!!
(He gazes into the windshield of the cruiser to see the expression on the cops’ face, but notices something odd before gravely sticking his head back in.)
Danny McDaniel: It’s empty…
(He continues driving with the boy screaming bloody murder as he gets off at a nearby exit and resumes heading for the edge of town on the side streets.)
Danny McDaniel: Hey, come on boy… stop crying.
Danny McDaniel: Please… I’m seriously… not in the mood right now.
Danny McDaniel: Look please stop… I’m not gonna hurt you. I just want to kill the power rangers.
(He sighs hopelessly as he thinks up one last idea.)
Danny McDaniel: Hey, shut up and I’ll tell you a story…
(The boy looks out the window and into his rear view mirror; he spots something that quiets him. McDaniel unwittingly continues)
Danny McDaniel: Oh thank God… well, let’s see… wanna know how I got these scars on my face?
“No, but I’ll tell you how you got these scars!”
Danny McDaniel: Huh?
(He hears a voice from out the window but when he turns his head, he’s met with a stiff punch in the face from none other than the red ranger who was hiding on top of the car and had on a cop hat.)
Danny McDaniel: OOOOOOFFFF!!!!
(The car swerves to the side and nearly crashes into a wall before Jason leaps into the vehicle and swerves the car back straight. He takes control of the steering wheel as he unbuckles the little boys seat belt.)
Jason: Okay kid, my friends should be here any second. When I say go I want you to leap out of the car and into their arms; they’ll get you back to safety; got it?
Boy: Can they take me to McDaniel’s first?
(Jason turns around and sees the others reappearing on their bikes behind him.)
Jason: Alright here they are.
(Zack pulls close to the passenger side window while Jason opens the door.)
Boy: I’m scared!
Jason: Don’t be; my friends are here to protect you. They would never let you get hurt.
Boy: B-but… I can’t.
Danny McDaniel: YOU’RE RUNING EVERYTHING!
(The clown regains consciousness and regains control of the steering wheel; nearly bowling over Zack at the approach the end of the road. Zack luckily avoids it and gets close the car again. This time, the boy gulps, yet without hesitation leaps into Zack’s arms just as he pulls away safely.)
Danny McDaniel: I’m gonna make you pay for that!
(He punches Jason in the face repeatedly while trying to wrestle for control of the steering wheel as they zoom past a sign that reads ‘Now leaving Angel Grove.’)
Jason: Hey stop man, we’re reaching a cliff.
Danny McDaniel: You’ve ruined my plan to kill your friends; now I will just have to kill you!!!
Jason: Pull over!!
(But the clown only laughs maniacally as he steps on the gas even harder. He ignores the one way turn and bursts through a barb wired metal gate. In front of the car from a distance, Goldar and Scorpina appear.)
Goldar: Here he comes; get ready!
Scorpina: (grins) This is gonna be good….
(Inside the car, Jason and Danny McDaniel still fight for control while they continue to exchange blows. The car starts to violently swerve as they approach the ledge of a deep rocky cliff that ends in shark infested water. Jason doesn’t see it ending well for either of them pleads with him.)
Jason: Come on man, you’re gonna kill the both of us; you’ve got to stop now.
Danny McDaniel: I’m driving you crazy aren’t I? Gyahahahaha!
Jason: Dude seriously, if you want a fight, we’ll fight, but pull over.
(But he continues to ignore him; showing no signs of stopping. Goldar even notices something’s up when he notices the other rangers aren’t following him he seems to not care that he’s coming right at them at upwards of 100 miles per hour. Goldar’s eyes open wide as he pushes Scorpina away and leaps to safety.)
Goldar: LOOK OUT!!!!
(The clown car zooms right by him, leaving them in a cloud of dust and hearing only the sound of McDaniel’s laughter. The two grow dangerously close to the edge and Jason begins to brace himself on the cars dashboard.)
Danny McDaniel: You’re one of us Jason you should be honored; getting the chance to die with your very own company mascot.
(However, just before they can see the bottom of the cliff, Jason lets go and grins.)
Jason: Haven’t you heard? I don’t work there anymore.
Danny McDaniel: Huh?
(Jason waves and reaches for his communicator and in a red flash, teleports away from the vehicle. The evil clown is suddenly stupefied.)
Danny: Oh… I forgot you could do that…
(And it was too late for him to stop the car as it goes soaring over the cliff leaving only a trail of dust. Goldar and Scorpina can only watch and listen in horror as the car vanishes from their sight and is heard crashing into every single surface below it as it tumbles into a ball of flame before finally hitting the water.)
Scorpina: Oh my…
Goldar: Arg…I have a headache.
(The two retreat before the rangers reappear. Back at the moon though, Rita isn’t done yet.)
Rita: Magic wand, make my monster……ah forget it.
(She drops her staff and dejectedly turns around with an angry scowl.)
Rita: Goldar, your monster sucks; what happened to trusting you?!
Goldar: I apologize my empress; I admit it didn’t quite go as planned but…
(She cuts him off.)
Rita: He drove himself off of a cliff. You THINK
(Finster butts in smarmily.)
Finster: Well maybe next time you should just go with one my monsters instead of counting on that oaf.
Rita: Do you have anything planned?
Finster: (bows) I’m in the middle of completing my latest, greatest creature: a tadpole with an attitude.
Rita: I swear to God I’m gonna fire you all…
(We rejoin our heroes a day later in the halls of Angel Grove high towards the end of class and the much anticipated exam. Once the bell rings, our heroes step out with drained looks in their eyes; none worse than Jason.)
Zack: Man, that exam busted our butts.
Trini: That was so difficult. I’ve never seen a history test so difficult.
Robbie: Maybe cause it was a science test; Ms. Appleby is starting to get her classes mixed up.
Billy: Seriously, they really need to start hiring more teachers.
Trini: How did you do Jason?
(Jason leans the back of his head against a locker and exhales.)
Jason: Alright I guess… I would have benefited from more time to go over the material. But what’s done is done.
Trini: Absolutely; the most important thing is you tried your best and you learned a valuable lesson about your limits.
Jason: Definitely; my dad was a little upset when I told him I got canned, but he surprisingly understood when I explained to him that I was already doing my best even without his pushing me. I want a bright future just as much as he does but a job is just too much for my plate. He promised to back off… as long as my grades stay up.
Kimberly: That’s great! Now you can focus on getting a prom date!
Jason: (shrugs) I don’t know… proms just a couple weeks away. I think it’s too late for me…
(Jason and the rest, turn around to see Sammy rushing down the stairs than merrily skipping towards them.)
Zack: Wait… this is Sammy? The girl you think is cute?
Robbie: I thought Sammy was a guy.
Kimberly: But she’s like, twelve.
Jason: Hey, I told you guys she’s a senior.
Kimberly: You didn't say in middle school!
Sammy: Jason, there you are!
Jason: Sammy, what are you doing in here?
Trini: Yeah Samantha, what are you doing in here?
(She cheerfully points at the sticker on her chest that says ‘visitor.’)
Sammy: Can’t you guys read?
Trini: But you should be in school. You’re school.
Sammy: No worries. I have a note from my parents excusing me for a couple classes.
Trini: And your parents signed this?
Sammy: Nope. But you will!
Trini: I don’t condone this. What is it that you want here?
(She turns to Jason with a smile.)
Sammy: I just wanted to say goodbye to my new friend.
Sammy: I didn’t get a chance to after Stephen let you go. You’re a really great guy and you didn’t deserve what you got. I’m sorry on behalf of everyone in that place. I mean it.
(Jason gently smiles at her.)
Jason: Don’t mention it. It was for the best anyway.
Sammy: I guess. But just so you know, I really let Stephen have it in back for you.
Sammy: He even wrote me up and sent me home. But whatever, it was a stupid move on his behalf and I don’t regret a single word I said.
(Jason stays quiet for a minute before he playfully punches her in the arm.)
Jason: Now I know you aren’t that charming to all the new guys.
(She blushes and cheerfully giggles.)
Sammy: You’re silly!
Trini: (to the others) I hope he knows that’s my cousin…
Sammy: Well, before Trini tells on me, I’m gonna go. But goodbye Jason. I know you’ll be something special someday.
(Sammy gives him a final longing stare before waving goodbye at the others and heading for the exit.)
Jason: I never got to finish my question to you the other day.
Sammy: Oh right…
(He humbly steps toward her.)
Jason: So uhm… there’s this prom coming up in a couple weeks and uhm… I was looking for a date.
Jason: And I was wondering, if... (Turns around to face Trini) if it’s alright with your big cousin of course…
(Trini smiles, then nods)
Jason: …would you do me the honor of going with me?
(Although Sammy half-expected it, she was still left dumbstruck when he asked her. She momentarily freezes before giving him a tight hug and flashing a huge smile.)
Sammy: Of course I will!
(Jason returns her hug and the episode ends with the two in a warm embrace.)
Kimberly: But she’s like, twelve!!!