Wednesday, March 05, 2014

The Monkees, Episode 13: "One Man Shy" aka "Peter and the Debutante"

It's the 13th episode of The Monkees, one of the few episodes known by two titles, "Peter and the Debutante" or "One Man Shy".  This episode was written by Gerald Gardner, Dee Caruso and Treva Silverman, directed by regular director James Frawley, and features the song "You May Just Be The One," written by Michael Nesmith (this original version wasn't released until the Missing Links CDs of rarities was issued by Rhino Records in the 1980s, and is featured on Volume 2. The reworked version of the song, which is probably better known, was featured on Headquarters, the first album the Monkees did without Don Kirschner's supervision (to put it nicely). Also featured in this episode is "I'm a Believer," written by Neil Diamond, which was the last track on the second album, More of the Monkees.

Guest-starring in this episode were:

George Furth, as Ronnie Farnsworth. He had previously appeared in two episodes of Batman, playing Galus in "Hizzoner the Penguin/Dizzoner the Penguin," Miklos in "The Carpathian Killer Affair" episode of the Man From UNCLE, would appear in a second Monkees episode, playing Henry in "A Coffin Too Frequent," appeared in "The Little Black Bag" episode of Rod Serling's Night Gallery, played Van Johnson in Blazing Saddles, as well as a number of other non-genre roles, both before and after. He passed away in 2008.

Lisa James as Valerie Cartwright. Lisa doesn't have any other genre roles, and only 11 screen credits, according to the IMDB. Roxanne Albee also appears in this episode as a party guest, and she had uncredited parts in eight other Monkees episodes (she was the blonde girl who seemed to appear in most every episode, with a very distinctive look. She dated Micky for a while, even before The Monkees started). John London also appears as a party guest, but he was better known for being Michael Nesmith's stand-in on the show in 55 episodes, also he can be seen on-camera in six other episodes. John was a friend of Michael's in Texas, and the two of them were part of a trio called Mike, John & Bill with Bill Sleeper. On several Monkees songs, John can be heard playing bass guitar, including "The Girl I Knew Somewhere."
monkees13-01The episode opens with the Monkees auditioning for Valerie Cartwright, a debutante who's going to be throwing a party. They're playing "You Just May Be The One," but are stopped by Ronnie Farnsworth, Valerie's boyfriend. While Valerie wants the Monkees to play at her party, Ronnie doesn't like them (he's a bit of a snob), calling them "dreadful." Valerie hires the band, and as she and Ronnie leave, Peter starts to follow until Ronnie turns around, causing Peter to bump into him. Ronnie tells Peter, "A gentleman does not stare at a lady," to which Peter replies, "A beggar can look at a queen." Ronnie tells the Monkees he found their music "primitive, grotesque and ugly," but Micky responds, "But it sure keeps your foot tappin', don't it?" and plays a rim shot on the drums. Ronnie leaves, and the other three Monkees remark on how they don't like him, while Peter has found a portrait of Valerie hanging on the wall, which he moons over. Outside, Mike, Micky and Davy are getting into the Monkeemobile when they find Peter sitting in the back, holding the portrait and talking to it about himself! The Monkees split before Peter's theft can be discovered!

monkees13-02After the opening credits, the Monkees are at their beach pad, and Peter's still mooning over Valerie's portrait. He's got it bad! His bandmates watch him, and finally, Mike goes to Peter and tells him that he should tell Valerie that he digs her, but Peter says he can't talk to girls. Micky steps in to teach Peter the ropes. He plans to pull a "Cyrano de Bergerac" with Peter, having Peter go outside of Valerie's window and moving his lips while the boys provide his dialogue. It starts out as planned, with Peter calling Valerie and her coming outside onto the balcony, but then Ronnie gets her to come back in because it's chilly outside (this despite Micky's "I love you twice as much on Friday, because I want the weekend off" quip!). They keep it up, not being aware that Valerie's not outside, and when the gardner comes up to Peter, he thinks Peter's talking to him, and punches him!

Back at the pad, Micky notes that it didn't work for Cyrano either as Pete nurses a sore jaw. Micky tells Peter that they've got to get Valerie's picture back before they're in trouble just as there's a knock on the door. It's Valerie, and the Monkees go into high speed as they look for a place to hide the picture, which they do by placing it against the wall, and Mike holding a mirror up over it. Micky lets Valerie and Ronnie in, and Valerie asks what music they're planning to play. Micky responds that they're going to start with "Last Train to Portrait." Ronnie looks at the pad and exclaims that it's a dump, that you'd have to call an interior decorator in to condemn it. He continues to insult the Monkees' pad, and when he goes up to Mike (who's combing his hair while looking in the mirror he's holding up), he says, "You really get a kick out of yourself, don't you?" Mike responds, "Yeah, but I'm all I have." The jig is up when the mirror slips, and Ronnie threatens to call the authorities, to which Micky responds, "You do and I'll be sorry!" Pete cops to taking the picture, and Valerie says it's all right, and he can return it at the party. Valerie and Ronnie leave, and Micky mimes beating Ronnie up.

monkees13-07Mike insists that Ronnie's got a lot of redeeming qualities, and suddenly Davy's dressed as Whistler's Mother, saying, "He's very nice to his mother," then Micky's with the stuffed monkey, saying, "He's probably very kind to dumb animals," and Pete (lying on a table getting a blood transfusion) says, "I know that he gives to the Red Cross. When Mike asks if there's anything else, we cut to the Monkees in Tarzan attire, surrounded by plants and lit in red, and they calling out, "We attack!" followed by a Tarzan yell and then coughing.

monkees13-04Later, at Jacques' Cafe, Ronnie and Valerie are having a meal outside, when Ronnie calls the waiter (Davy in disguise) for some champagne. Davy gets a bottle and hammers the cork in with a mallet before handing it over. When he tries to pull the cork out himself, Ronnie insists that only someone born to greatness knows the proper way to open champagne, and he takes the bottle, having great difficulty himself in opening it -- when the cork finally comes out, it causes a building to collapse (in what looks like footage from an old movie serial).

monkees13-05Then, at an art show in a park, Valerie and Ronnie are looking at paintings, but Ronnie's distracted by what appears to be a sculpture made up pipes, which he proclaims as magnificent. He starts going on about what it means as Mike (in disguise) is dusting it off, and Ronnie asks Mike who the artist is. Mike asks if he's a nut, and when Ronnie insists that he must have it, Mike says that all it does is turn on the fountain, as water sprays in Ronnie's face. Next, they're walking down a street when they encounter Micky (disguised as a toy salesman), and when Micky tries to get Ronnie to buy something, and Ronnie isn't interested, Micky says, "Oh, you don't like kids, do you?" This causes Ronnie to insist he likes children, and Micky shows him this doll that really wets and spits (thanks to a bulb of water that Micky squeezes, wetting Ronnie), as well as screams. When Ronnie starts to see through the disguise, Micky, Micky rushes away. Ronnie is beginning to smell a rat!

monkees13-06Later, Ronnie is drawing on a picture of the Monkees, showing how they were disguised. Ronnie insists that two can play at that game. That afternoon, the Monkees are invited to meet Valerie and Ronnie, where they're going to shoot skeet. Davy insists that he's an expert at skeet, and takes a rifle. Ronnie uses a mirror to shoot his clay pigeon while shooting over his shoulder. It's Davy's turn next, and he shoots the pigeon before it's even launched! Next, it's archery time, and after Ronnie shoots a bullseye, he invites Peter to shoot next, but Mike steps up to shoot in his place (saying that he used to shoot mountain lions). Mike takes the bow and arrow, and tries to take his own shot, but pulls the arrow away from his hand, so that it falls. Next, it's badminton time, and Micky steps in for Peter this time to play Ronnie. Ronnie serves, and Micky works hard to return the shots, while Ronnie hits back easily. Finally, the birdie goes into Micky's mouth, requiring his bandmates to help him remove it! Valerie get disgusted with Ronnie at this.

monkees13-08At the pad, they figure they've blown it, and apologize to Peter. At Valerie's place, she tells Ronnie that she humiliated him, and calls Peter to have him take her to the party. Peter's now worried that he doesn't know how to behave at a party, and so, accompanied by "I'm a Believer," the Monkees show Peter (with Valerie's help) how to act like a gentleman. First, Micky demonstrates how to take a lady's coat and pull a chair out for her. When Peter does it, he hangs the chair up! Then we see a few scenes of Peter and Valerie spending time with each other, gazing in each other's eyes. Next, Mike shows how to place one's coat over a puddle for a lady. Peter then takes Valerie's coat and puts it in the puddle! More shots of Pete and Valerie gazing at each other for the chorus, intercut with shots of Valerie from earlier in the episode. Next, Davy's showing Pete to open a car door for a lady, but Peter closes the door on Valerie's ankle! Despite all this, Valerie seems to be taken with Peter as they dance in the park. Ronnie shows up and throws a discus at them, but knocks himself down. Finally, Davy shows how to light a lady's cigarette, but when Pete tries, the wind blows the lighter out, so he tries to use a blowtorch -- fortunately Davy stops him! The music montage ends with Pete kissing Valerie.

monkees13-09After the song, Pete comes back to the pad, and his bandmates tell him that they'll figure out something. Davy asks Peter if he's ever had a crush before, and Pete says he did, and he took them to a cub scout meeting. Micky asks if anyone's ever had a crush on him, but Pete says he got a threatening valentine once. Mike asks if he's played spin the bottle before, but Pete says he's always lost. They decide to fix this, and they invite a girl over to play spin the bottle with them. Mike explains the game, and the girl spins the bottle, which points to Davy (Pete: "It always points to Davy.") Even when Peter tries to force the bottle to point to him, it forces its way to point to Davy. Finally, Davy's told to leave the room, and when the bottle is spun, it flies across the room to point at Davy!

monkees13-10Next, Micky is done up as a Freud, analyzing Peter. Pete says he used to be embarrased about kissing, and Micky analyzes it as a mother fixation. The phone rings and it's Micky's mother, who appears to be rather domineering! She tells Micky to put his galoshes on, which Micky does. Since that didn't work, Peter decides he can't go through with it, but Mike promises they'll be on the bandstand, giving him moral support. At the party, Pete's in a suit and tie with Valerie, while his bandmates are in their red eight-button shirts. Micky reminds Pete to talk music, books and politics, but when Pete tries it, he says to Valerie, "I read a music books about politics." Micky figures that Pete's going to blow it. Pete starts to tell Valerie about Hamlet, while his bandmates rush off to figure out a way to help Pete.

monkees13-11As Pete goes to refill Valerie's punch, Micky shows up, disguised as a stockbroker looking for Peter. He tells Valerie that Pete's very wealthy, so wealthy he smokes ten cigars a day, and lights them with hundred dollar bills! When Valerie notes that's expensive, Micky assures her that he gets his cigars wholesale. When Pete returns, he's confused at Micky's presence, but Micky doubletalks through Pete's confusion. Next, Davy shows up as Pete's tailor, to measure him for a new suit, but Davy obviously doesn't know the first thing about taking measurements. Valerie enjoys the farce, and says the next thing she expects to see is the captain of his yacht -- and enter Mike as the same! Mike asks if he'd like the yacht brought around, and if he'll be seating the customary 20 people that night. As this goes on, Ronnie shows up in vampire cape, and he shows up to expose the Monkees! They try to get away, but Ronnie stops them, calling them frauds and fifth rate musicians (Micky: "Third rate musicians!") Ronnie tells them they're being paid to play, so play. Peter confesses that it's true, they're just his friends, and they wanted to make him out to be something special. Valerie says he's fine being himself, which causes Ronnie to chew on his cape.

monkees13-12Mike introduces the band, and they start playing "You Just May Be the One." As the song begins, Ronnie tries to get the first dance, but Peter wants the first dance. They grip hands and Indian wrestle as the song starts, but Pete gets the best of him! Next, Pete beats Ronnie at hopscotch. Between battles with Ronnie, we see the band performing (with Pete next to them -- it's Monkee magic!). Next, Pete's lifting a weight that when Ronnie takes it, causes him to drop to the ground because of its weight. Next, it's a duel with pistols, and Pete's pistol pops out a flag saying "Bang" while Ronnie's says "Ow!" (this clip with Pete would be used in the second season opening credits). Next, Pete jumps down some steps, but when Ronnie tries to do the same, he reacts like a cartoon character, shaking. They box next, and Pete knocks Ronnie out with one blow! Fencing is next, with the duo wearing capes, followed by marbles, both of which Pete wins. Finally, they're back to Indian wresting, and Pete wins again.

monkees13-13After the song, back at the pad, Mike addresses the viewer: "Would you believe that the Peter that we all know and love turned into a wolf in sheep's clothing?" We cut to Micky on the steps with the stuffed monkey, saying, "Which just goes to prove you can make a silk purse out of a sow's ear... if you have enough good silk." We cut to Davy on the table getting a blood transfusion this time, and he says, "Which proves, more than ever, it's now how you play the game, it's whether you win or lose." We cut to Pete, playing spin the bottle with four girls, and of course, he points the bottle at him so all four girls can kiss him!

This was a fun episode, as most Peter-focused episodes are. Most episodes that focus on a particular Monkee can be uneven... Davy episodes always involve a girl, Micky episodes usually involve him either looking like someone else or having a problem that needs to be overcome that gets him into trouble, and Mike episodes come out the worst for him, as he's rarely takes charge of things (which is his usual mode in episodes that don't focus on him). The previous episode, "I've Got a Little Song Here," seems like it would've been more appropriate for a Peter episode than a Mike one, but on the other hand, I can't see this episode being written to be about one of the other Monkees!

Next: "Dance, Monkee, Dance," another episode focused on Peter!

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