The New Archies, Segment 22 – Gunk for Gold

TNA-22-Gunk-for-Gold-01-title
Writers: Eleanor Burian-Mohr & Jack Hanrahan
Director: Jim Simon
Original Air Date: Saturday, November 21, 1987 (assumed)
Length: 11:21

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The segment opens with a soccer game. A player kicks the ball to Moose and tells him to go for the goal.

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Moose is initially confused but then thanks the kid, whose name is Biff. He makes a goal.

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The coach asks Eugene for a stat update. It seems this is the twelfth goal that Moose has scored for the other team. Oopsie.

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Ms. Grundy is trying to support the team, but Mr. Weatherbee laments this is Riverdale’s tenth year in a row losing to the Bainbridge Bongoes. Ms. Grundy says Veronica still has a chance to win this game.

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Unfortunately, that asshole Biff appeals to Veronica’s vanity, takes the ball, and then makes some trash talk at Archie.

Biff then scores the winning goal, ending the game. Ms. Grundy tries to kinda-sorta console Mr. Weatherbee.

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In the boys’ locker room, the coach tries to look on the bright side: they’ve played only three games. However, Jughead is all negative, pointing out that they’ve lost three. Holy shit, look at that huge stash of burgers. Jughead has a mountain of hamburgers in his fucking gym locker. That’s fucking nasty!

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The coach continues to try to be optimistic, but Biff shows up to insult them.

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Moose wants to beat the shit out of Biff, but Archie and Eugene somehow restrain him. Yeah, I don’t think so. Anyway, Archie’s still optimistic about their team, but the others aren’t and leave.

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Later, Archie’s hanging out at Eugene’s, and he’s frustrated that the team’s so down on themselves.

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Eugene feels the same but suggests Archie help him with a science project, claiming it’ll get their minds off soccer. How many science projects do these kids do per year? I seem to remember it being only a once-per-year thing, and I never enjoyed having to do it. Of course, knowing Eugene, he might be doing this just for fun.

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Archie agrees and then asks what this shit is.

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As Eugene explains, some of the pizza that Archie’s eating drops into an Erlenmeyer flask, contaminating the contents and turning them green.

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Eugene immediately notices and runs off with the contaminated substance. Please note the pizza has turned all of Eugene’s compound green, despite the fact that the pizza was dropped into only the one flask.

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Eugene dumps the compound in a trash can, which gets all cartoony and barfs it back out.

The gunk bounces around the room. Archie tries to grab it with a net but fails. Finally, he jumps on it…

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…and promptly bounces out the window.

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Archie’s having a great time.

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Show-off.

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Eugene comes outside and throws a football for Archie to catch. I find this very unbelievable. Why would Eugene have a football? For that matter, why does he have a basketball hoop?

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So Archie kicks the ball while spinning in the air and then just lands. I think Eugene might like his ball back.

Anyway, Archie loves the gunk. Eugene, the intelligent one, wonders what they can use it for.

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Fortunately(?), Reggie, who just happens to be hanging out near Eugene’s house, has an idea.

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Reggie’s plan is to smear the gunk on the soles of their gym shoes. Okay, so they’re ripping off Son of Flubber.

Archie asks if this is cheating, and Eugene asks if it’s the misuse of science, but Reggie rationalizes both of their concerns away.

They hear people coming, so Eugene puts the gunk in a locker to keep it safe. Um, take it home with you, you dumbass!

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They make a pact to keep this top secret.

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Before a game, Archie and Reggie give a pep talk about “magic feet” that even their teammates find lame.

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Veronica and Betty share a laugh over Jughead’s bouncing around while thinking nothing odd about it. They also bounce around themselves like it’s perfectly normal.

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So Riverdale does really well while also breaking the rules of soccer and the laws of physics.

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Not to worry, though: all authority figures are too jazzed up to care.

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The team takes its success on the road.

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They’ve even come up with a cheer: “We got the beat! We got the magic feet!” It makes the Walmart Cheer sound almost tolerable by comparison.

No, it doesn’t.

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Archie and Eugene are tired.

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“What the fuck’s wrong with you guys? We won the last three games! Yay, us!”

Archie says he thought winning would feel better.

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At another game, Jughead’s listening to Michael Jackson and moonwalks into the soccer ball.

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“Hold my burger, asshole. I gotta score a goal now.”

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Do school principals and random teachers regularly accompany school sports teams on away games? I’m guessing no.

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Riverdale continues to kick ass in the world of junior high school soccer.

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After the commercial break, Archie’s helping out in the school garden for whatever reason. Ms. Grundy praises the team. She says they’re only one game away from the championship. I smell conflict.

Ms. Grundy realizes Archie’s planting his gloves and asks what’s wrong. Archie tries to speak of “someone” having a hypothetical moral dilemma, and Ms. Grundy suggests “someone” look into his heart.

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Eugene comes by and catches the end of the conversation.

TNA-22-Gunk-for-Gold-53-Archie-Eugene-shoes
Later, Archie and Eugene are spreading the gunk on the soles of their shoes. Eugene asks Archie if he’s looked into his heart yet. Archie says yes and asks Eugene the same question. Eugene says he thought they could look later. Well, aren’t you a badass?

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They’re startled by the rest of the team entering the locker room, but I guess they don’t get caught, because it moves on to the next scene.

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During the game, Ethel kicks the ball to Moose, but she does it in such a way as to show off. Apparently, as we’re led to believe, the gunk allows the team to perform weird tricks, like bouncing the soccer ball off all of the players (while not hurting them in the slightest).

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The stupid “magic feet” cheer has caught on.

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Riverdale wins another game and is now in the championship game.

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That night (I guess), at Archie’s house, Archie and Eugene look into their hearts. Archie calls up the newspaper to tell “the newspaper guy” (Reggie’s dad?) the truth. After Archie explains, he’s just laughed at. Archie shakes his head in sadness. Eugene tries to comfort him.

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The next day (I guess), at Pop’s, Archie explains everything to the gang (minus Ethel, because she’s not a main character). Veronica is in disbelief.

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To prove it, Archie gunks Jughead’s stupid hat. It bounces around for a bit and then lands right back on Jughead’s head, because of course it does. The gang is awestruck.

Archie says they’re going to the championship tomorrow. He brings up Biff. Wow, I’d forgotten about that asshole. Anyway, Archie asks if they should gunk or not.

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Ha.

Reggie protests. Archie gives a half-assed line about winning.

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That’s all that it took, apparently.

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The next night, at the championship game, the team is depressed.

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Well, except for Jughead. He doesn’t give a shit.

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So the team sucks without the gunk.

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Biff makes fun of their “magic feet”.

TNA-22-Gunk-for-Gold-77-Ethel-surprisedTNA-22-Gunk-for-Gold-78-Grundy-Weatherbee-disappointed
Riverdale’s audience is disappointed.

So Riverdale continues sucking, and the Bongoes keep racking up points.

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Veronica says they’re no good without gunk. Reggie says he knew they should have used it.

Archie tries to give a pep talk, saying they still have half of the game left to go, but the others won’t have it and tell him to shut the fuck up. Archie lies his ass off, claiming they played the last two games without gunk. He gets Eugene to go along with it.

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This really shouldn’t fool anyone, but it does, because everyone on this show is a fucking idiot. They do the “magic feet” chant, even though they’re not wearing the gunk, because fuck this show.

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Ms. Grundy and Mr. Weatherbee join in, somehow hearing the team from way up in the bleachers.

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So the team suddenly plays unusually well. Jughead even jumps really high, as if he’s wearing the gunk, but he blends into the crowd, so I can’t really get a good screencap of it. The point is Riverdale suddenly rocks for no apparent reason except “morale”.

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I’m pretty sure this is illegal in any soccer game, but it’s too late in the story for the adults to start enforcing the rules. Let’s just get this over with.

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So the score’s tied 6-6. The coach informs them that they have 30 seconds to win or lose this game. Either way, they’re proud and all rooting for them.

The crowd keeps doing the “magic feet” chant.

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The Bongoes, led by Biff, try to get past the “losers”.

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Amani gets the ball and heads for the goal, uttering her first clear line of the episode.

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Bullshit!

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Ms. Grundy loses her shit over the victory.

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Why isn’t Amani on top? She scored the winning goal!

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It’s nice that Betty hugs her, though.

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Jughead asks Archie if they really did it without gunk. Does he mean the previous two games or this game? Because the visuals in the second half seem to indicate they’re gunked up (not that Archie would have been able to gunk them up without their realizing it). Archie just winks.

The team has its picture taken.

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Then we get this odd ending where Ms. Grundy is looking at the (black-and-white) photo in an album and saying “And that was the year Riverdale won the championship…fair and square.” Why is this segment suddenly turned into a massive flashback? Who is Ms. Grundy telling this story to? And why is she fucking lying? Even if the team didn’t use gunk in the championship game (which I’m still not sure about), they still cheated to get there. So, no, Geraldine, Riverdale did not win the championship “fair and square”.

This segment was pretty bad. Everyone was an idiot. No one questioned the powers gained from the gunk. No adults enforced the rules. Just…let’s move on from this. There are only four segments left.

Tune in next Wednesday!

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Author: markmooreauthor

I love watching anime and superhero movies, and I love playing video games. I also write fan fiction and original fiction.

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