Welcome Back, Kotter

Trivia, Quotes, Notes and Allusions

Quotes (298)

  • Alex: (to Kotter) In your socks with a pound of lox!

  • Freddie: This coat was worn at the famous Lincoln-Douglas debate. Kotter: This coat was worn at the famous Lincoln-Douglas debate? Freddie: I wore this coat when my father, Lincoln, beat the daylights out of my brother, Douglas!

  • Kotter: Just think of a debate as sort of a, um, rumble with words. Vinnie: You mean like, 'Up your nose with a garden hose?'

  • Kotter: (seeing the mural)What do you call this anyway, Moonlight Over Garbage?

  • Vinnie: (to Todd) Off my case, potato face!

  • Vinnie: You scratch my back, I scratch yours. Kotter: I can't do that. You see, my wife has an exclusive on my entire body. She'd be disturbed if I came home with a pre-scratched back.

  • Kotter: Do I look like Miss Fishbeck, the art teacher? Epstein: Only around the moustache.

  • Gabe: I'm too young to be making my father's noise!

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Notes (35)

  • As with most pilots, there are things in this episode that would be re-adjusted later. The classroom is arranged differently, and the Sweathogs are a bit one-dimensional. Arnold only speaks when Vinnie tells him to speak. The cast is older than the characters they are portraying, and that's aparant, but highly forgettable.

  • Original Australian airdate: Tuesday, October 12th, 1976 7.30pm

  • Vinnie names Bonzo Meretti; this was actually an old classmate of Gabe's, who he sometimes refers to on the show.

  • The play the class performs is entitled "Come Back, Little Arnold"...this is also the title of episode 92 of the series.

  • Miles Oliver is played by Jerry Rannow, a frequent writer for the show.

  • Guest star Pat Morita appears as Taro "Mr. T" Takahashi in this episode to attract the attention of viewers for his series, Mr. T and Tina.

  • Star Robert Hegyes has stated this is his favorite episode.

  • Guest star Dinah Manoff would work with John Travolta again in 1978 when they both appeared in the movie version of Grease.

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Trivia (7)

  • The school shown is New Urecht High School, where Gabe Kaplan was a student.

  • Washington mentions Moo Goo Gai grits.  This same joke is in "The Best Policy" episode of Mama's Family.

  • If all students voted in the election, the total numbers of students at Buchanan must be 381 as Mr. Kotter breaks the numbers down.

  • In the first scene, Juan mentions a chicken he rescued. However, among the animals that he gives to the Kotters, there's no sign of a chicken.

  • Jerry Rannow's character is listed as Miles Oliver in the closing credits, but he calls himself Oliver Miles in the episode.

  • This episode reveals Murray's first name to be Wilbur.

  • With this episode, Horshack is the first Sweathog to get married.

Allusions (14)

  • The episode title is a play on the title of Ken Kesey's 1962 novel, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, adapted into a 1975 movie of the same name.

  • The episode title is a play on the musical West Side Story.

  • The episode title is a play on James Hilton's 1933 novel Goodbye, Mr. Chips, since adapted for the screen multiple times.

  • Horshack explains one of Baba Bebe's sayings is, "when it's right, you know it," which Mr. Kotter immediately recognizes as being from TV. It was a phrase used in advertisements for Schlitz beer.

  • The episode title is a play on Fyodor Dostoevsky's 1866 novel Crime and Punishment.

  • The episode title and plot elements refer to Sidney Lumet's 1976 movie Network.

  • When Carvelli brings out his term papers, he says "Your category was social studies for $20. Hmmm, that sounds like a game show, don't it?" Juan later replies, "Sure! I'll take Paul Lynde to block!" This refers to the orignal version of The Hollywood Squares, which aired on NBC from 1966–81. This version included Paul Lynde in the center square, and contestants often used him to block.

  • The episode title is a play on James Hilton's 1934 novel Goodbye, Mr. Chips, since adapted for the screen several times.

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