American Dreams

Season 1 Episode 25

City on Fire

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM May 18, 2003 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
19 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

City on Fire
In the season finale, racial tensions begin to flare in North Philly sparking a massive riot, while an oblivious Meg makes final preparations for her sweet sixteen birthday party. Unaware of the violent situation building around her, Meg attempts to save her friendship with Sam, visiting him at the new store, and finds herself in the middle of the urban chaos. Elsewhere, an angry Nathan who helped incite the violence, urges the enraged rioters forward, while Pete and the rest of Philadelphia's finest race to quell the disturbance. Meanwhile, a defeated J.J. returns from Lehigh after being kicked off the football team and makes a surprising announcement to Jack and Helen about his future, while Michael Brooks reveals the possibility he might be leaving "Bandstand" for a new record-producing gig in California.moreless

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  • Watch this episode!!! It\'s amazing!

    I could not count the number of times I\'ve seen this episode. It would be impossible. This episode deals with riots in Philadelphia. And there are some very heart breaking moments that are amazing and need to be mentioned.

    Roxanne\'s scene with Michael Brooks is so sad, because she doesn\'t have any one to take her home. It really is a look into Roxanne\'s not so fun side of her, and makes you tear up.

    JJ joins the army! Everytime I watch the beginning of this episode, I always yell, \"No JJ!!! Take it back!!!\" It\'s so sad!

    Sam and Meg have many sweet scenes, especially when they\'re watching everything burn and he grabs her hand.

    At the end, when A Change is Gonna Come is playing, and they\'re watching the shop burn down, I always cry. It\'s so sad.

    \"They shot Willie Johnson!\"moreless
Kelly Rowland

Kelly Rowland

Martha Reeves

Guest Star

Stacie Orrico

Stacie Orrico


Guest Star

Joey Lawrence

Joey Lawrence

Michael Brooks

Recurring Role

Keith Robinson

Keith Robinson

Nathan Walker

Recurring Role

Matthew John Armstrong

Matthew John Armstrong

Pete Pryor

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels were a great band that did not begin to get national exposure until their debut album was released on the heels of their first hit, Jenny Take A Ride. That song has, as a basis for the middle section of it, taken several lines from C.C. Rider which is a completely different song (written by Chuck Willis). What makes this a huge goof is that Dick Clark intro'd the song on his Bandstand show as C.C Rider and the producers of American Dreams made it appear as if it happened during the time of the episode (Aug 1964). Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels did not hit the charts until Jan 1966 or well over 16 months later. Dick was wrong in his intro of the song title. Of course, he really didn't listen to his producer.

  • QUOTES (1)

    • Meg: Wait! My uncle's going to be here soon with a bunch of policemen!
      Willie Johnson: The policemen can't stop this, girl. (picks up TV and smashes it)

  • NOTES (2)

    • When Stacie Orrico sings "My Boyfriend's Back," although the back-up singers are different actresses, it's Meg and Roxanne singing backup.

    • Songs w/Artists (in tonight's episode)
      * Let It Be Me - The Everly Brothers - 7-2/22/60
      * Lonely Teardrops - Jackie Wilson - 7-2/09/59
      * My Boyfriend's Back - The Angels - 1-8/31/63 [Stacie Orrico cover]
      * [Simon & Garfunkel?]
      * Pride And Joy - Marvin Gaye -
      * When You Walk In The Room - Jackie de Shannon - 99-1/25/64
      * [unknown]
      * Jenny Take A Ride! - Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels - 10-1/29/66
      * Happy Birthday, Sweet Sixteen - Neil Sedaka - 6-1/06/62
      * Nowhere To Run - Martha & the Vandellas - 8-4/10/65 [Kelly Rowland cover]
      * [unknown]