This is one of those shows that I am technically too young for but could not escape in syndication. The Facts of Life was a show about a group of girls at a boarding school. The entire series was basically a very special episode with every single show ending in some kind of big deal life lesson. I mean, they covered literally every single “ism” in the book and then some. So how have I managed to select a very special episode for this post? This episode has Jermaine Jackson.
In fact, I think this episode scripted more fans for Jermaine than he actually had in real life. Tootie (Kim Fields) is the president of the Jermaine Jackson fan club and she thinks that she and Jermaine know each other. I mean literally know each other–as in pen pals. She’s like fifteen years old but she cannot tell the difference between a rubber stamp and an actual signature. Please, I’ve known the difference ever since I received a packet of information form Gerald R. Ford for a project in the fifth grade.
But that is not the point. The point is that Tootie is delusional. Everyone is encouraging her not to be obsessed with Jermaine and so on and so forth, but no one has addressed the fact that she has essentially started the cult of Jermaine Jackson. She has a group of girls play records until midnight and then open the window and yell Jermaine’s name so that he will hear them hundreds of miles away in New York City. She is also working on a paper mache sculpture of his head that she won’t let any of the other club members touch.
Tootie gets hysterical when she cannot go to the Jermaine Jackson concert, and I mean literally hysterical. Mrs. Garret (who is basically a random woman in charge of all of these girls but like whatever do not question it) agrees to take her to the concert because she think that Tootie has had a psychotic break and she does not know what else to do to help her.
Is this not a school? Do they not have resources like a counselor? Or her parents? But no, it’s probably best to take her to the concert where the dude she stalks will be. Of course, she eventually gets to meet Jermaine Jackson, hang out with him, and learn a very important life lesson, but I’m getting ahead of myself.
Tootie arrives at the concert and is completely shocked when she gets to Jermaine’s dressing room and realizes that he has no idea who she is. He tells her that he is too busy with his music to deal with fans. (Hahaha give me a break) She also finds out that everything she has ever read about Jermaine is essentially a lie, and frankly that is kind of sad. Tootie lives in a pre-internet world, so I guess I cannot totally blame her for believing celebrity magazines. She ends up being all sad for Jermaine because she thinks it must be hard to be famous. She ends up crying at the end of the episode and saying that he said “thank you.” I think that it’s implied that this thank you is for talking to him like a normal human event though Jermaine does not seemed stressed out at all about being a celebrity. In fact, based upon my casual observation, I’d say he’s probably the Jackson most eager to be a celebrity. Oh well, I guess Tootie learned her lesson? I mean right? No one like wants to talk to her about why she got so crazy in the first place? Guess not.
Very Special Lesson: If you’re obsessed with a celebrity, become hysterical enough that the people who love you are scared of you and then they will take you to meet said celebrity.