Lizzie McGuire

Season 1 Episode 20

Educating Ethan

0
Aired Unknown Aug 24, 2001 on Disney Channel
7.8
out of 10
User Rating
36 votes
3

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Episode Summary

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Educating Ethan
AIRED:
Gordo wants to raise money for a new stereo, so Miranda and Lizzie suggest he tutor students who need help in math. His first student is Ethan Craft, much to the girls' delight. When Gordo is working with Ethan at the Digital Bean, Lizzie and Miranda keep trying to horn in on the action and end up spilling drinks all over the guys' papers. Gordo gets mad at them and suggests that they aren't smart enough to help him tutor anyway. The girls get angry right back at him and leave. Meanwhile, Matt and his friend Oscar are looking for something exciting to do. They decide to become "super heroes" Matt Man and the Incredible Oscar. They go around the neighborhood in costume trying to do good deeds, but all they do is annoy the neighbors. At lunch the next day, Gordo is having trouble explaining fractions to Ethan. As a peace offering, Lizzie tries to help. Gordo is not too happy about it, especially when Lizzie's explanation is clearer than his own. Ethan asks Lizzie to tutor him instead. Lizzie doesn't want to hurt her friendship with Gordo and reluctantly turns Ethan down. Miranda thinks she's crazy to have done that, but Lizzie is determined to be the bigger person. But then Gordo tells the girls they owe him an apology, which gets them mad at him all over again. Back at home, Mr. and Mrs. McGuire put a stop to Matt and Oscar's "do-gooding" outside of the house. At school, Lizzie gets an "A" on the math quiz but Ethan fails, despite Gordo's tutoring. Ethan again asks Lizzie to help tutor him and this time she can't resist. But when she gets ready to leave home to meet Ethan, she can't find any shoes! Matt and Oscar say the "Evil Shoe Baron" got them all. Mom says the super-heroes better find them right away. They do, then she puts an end to the do-gooding business once and for all. At the Digital Bean, Lizzie uses a visual aid to help explain fractions to Ethan--cheerleaders! At school, Gordo apologizes to the girls for the way he acted. Ethan "aces" the make-up test with a 72 and gives Lizzie a big hug as a reward.moreless

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Oooh! Tutoring Ethan Craft!

    9.6
    That's right. Gordo is tutoring Ethan Craft in math, so that he can earn enough cash to buy a new stereo. Ethan does not understand how to multiply and divide fractions, so Gordo is helping to prepare him for a test. Unfortunately Ethan does not do so well. He does a much better job when Lizzie tutors him. She's more patient with him, and she also lays the math problem on the table, using objects or even people. Gordo's angry with Lizzie and Miranda though for taking his tutoring job from him, but he takes his anger too far and ends up hurting his friends. In the end, he realises he was wrong.moreless
  • 7.8
    Gordo wants to raise money for a new stereo, so Miranda and Lizzie suggest he tutor students who need help in math. His first student is Ethan Craft, much to the girls' delight. When Gordo is working with Ethan at the Digital Bean, Lizzie and Miranda keep trying to horn in on the action and end up spilling drinks all over the guys' papers. Gordo gets mad at them and suggests that they aren't smart enough to help him tutor anyway. The girls get angry right back at him and leave. Meanwhile, Matt and his friend Oscar are looking for something exciting to do. They decide to become "super heroes" Matt Man and the Incredible Oscar. They go around the neighborhood in costume trying to do good deeds, but all they do is annoy the neighbors.



    At lunch the next day, Gordo is having trouble explaining fractions to Ethan. As a peace offering, Lizzie tries to help. Gordo is not too happy about it, especially when Lizzie's explanation is clearer than his own. Ethan asks Lizzie to tutor him instead. Lizzie doesn't want to hurt her friendship with Gordo and reluctantly turns Ethan down. Miranda thinks she's crazy to have done that, but Lizzie is determined to be the bigger person. But then Gordo tells the girls they owe him an apology, which gets them mad at him all over again.



    Back at home, Mr. and Mrs. McGuire put a stop to Matt and Oscar's "do-gooding" outside of the house. At school, Lizzie gets an "A" on the math quiz but Ethan fails, despite Gordo's tutoring. Ethan again asks Lizzie to help tutor him and this time she can't resist. But when she gets ready to leave home to meet Ethan, she can't find any shoes! Matt and Oscar say the "Evil Shoe Baron" got them all. Mom says the super-heroes better find them right away. They do, then she puts an end to the do-gooding business once and for all.



    At the Digital Bean, Lizzie uses a visual aid to help explain fractions to Ethan--cheerleaders! At school, Gordo apologizes to the girls for the way he acted. Ethan "aces" the make-up test with a 72 and gives Lizzie a big hug as a reward.moreless
  • Superheroes & Smarts.

    4.8
    Gordo wants to make some extra money to buy a new stereo. To facilitate this end he advertises his skills as a tutor for any students that need help. But due to his poor penmanship the only person to respond to his flyer is Ethan. He (unsurprisingly) needs help with his grades, specifically math.



    Lizzie and Miranda, seeing Gordo’s tutoring as an ‘in’ with Ethan, crowd Gordo while he’s trying to earn his money. But instead of helping him they’re just in it to get Ethan to notice them, thus raising Gordo’s ire. In fact, they serve to distract Ethan from the task at hand.



    Further getting Gordo’s dander up is Ethan’s inability to grasp what he’s trying to be taught. Ethan’s utter incomprehension gets the better of Gordo’s good nature; he becomes frustrated with his ‘student’.



    But the topper comes when *Lizzie* is able to satisfactory explain the concepts to Ethan—thus leading him to asking *her* to tutor him instead.



    It’s too much for Gordo to handle. He vents his anger on the girls, and in the process questions their intelligence. And in this we learn a couple of things about Gordo.



    One: that he doesn’t suffer fools gladly. His patience is short.



    Two: that Gordo doesn’t like to be upstaged. We saw this ‘competitive streak’ in action against Tudgeman in “Obsession” and we see it again here. It eats Gordo up that Lizzie can do something he’s unable to. Namely, make Ethan understand math.



    Also cropping up is Gordo’s subconscious belief that he is smarter than those around him. We saw this subtle belief in “Jack of all Trades” when he dismissed Lizzie’s ability to create the project he himself made. In this episode we see Gordo refer to Lizzie and Miranda as being mere ‘B’ students, not up to his level of intellectual prowess.



    This conceit on Gordo’s part rarely comes up, but it is there, and as such makes his character even more ‘human’.



    And, as in “The Untitled Stan Jansen Project”, Gordo must once again prostrate himself and ask forgiveness from the girls (and in the process endure Miranda’s biting remarks).



    By the end all is well that ends well.



    As for the subplot, Matt and Oscar embark upon a neighborhood wide crusade to fight crime in the guises of ‘Matt-Man’ and ‘The Incredible Oscar’. Matt’s superhero outfit is obviously a knockoff of Superman, whereas Oscar’s is that of ‘The Incredible Hulk’ (a nice symmetry, seeing how each is the resident ‘powerhouse’ of their respective comicbook universes).



    Unfortunately for the duo, their efforts to help end up as more of a hindrance.



    Not much of a side story, but the visuals of Matt and Oscar in their hero getup is almost worth it.



    This isn’t one of the better episodes. Gordo comes off seeming impatient and petty. And to top it off he has to come back to Lizzie and Miranda groveling. Also, the subplot isn’t much of a subplot at all.



    But while Gordo’s behavior may be disappointing, it is a good opportunity for character study, so that makes the episode worthwhile at least from one standpoint.moreless
Norma Michaels

Norma Michaels

Elderly Woman

Guest Star

Sebastian Jude

Sebastian Jude

Oscar

Guest Star

Amanda Oshita

Amanda Oshita

Girl

Guest Star

Jeremy J. Bargiel

Jeremy J. Bargiel

 

Recurring Role

Clayton Snyder

Clayton Snyder

Ethan Craft

Recurring Role

Arvie Lowe

Arvie Lowe

Mr. Dig

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (14)

  • NOTES (10)

    • This episode can be found in the paperback novelization book, Lizzie Loves Ethan.

    • Minor change to the set of the McGuire's home: Peach colored paint is added to the bookshelves near the family room.

    • Arvie Lowe, Jr. makes his first appearance as recurring character Mr. Dig, the substitute teacher that is always seen in Lizzie's classes.

    • Character with no lines: Rhonda, the one cheerleader Ethan mentions by name.

    • It would be likely that, in reality, Gordo's handwriting would be quite messy. There's a theory that the most intelligent people have the messiest handwriting.

    • Ethan scores an 11 on his first math test!

    • Sam McGuire makes a reference to a neighbor, "old Mrs. Lippen," using the last name of the show's casting director, Robin Lippen.

    • Filming dates: March 9-13, 2001. The clapboard on the blooper reel at the end of the show is dated March 12, 2001.

    • Songs played include "ABC" by the Jackson Five (heard during the cheerleader/fractions scene) and "(Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman" by the Kinks (heard when Matt and Oscar are "fighting evil"). "ABC" was the second hit and second #1 record for the Jackson Five, featuring 12-year-old lead singer Michael Jackson. (At the time his management tried to claim he was only 10!) It hit the top of the charts in 1970, replacing the Beatles' "Let It Be." "(Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman" was a minor hit (#41) in 1979 for the British rock group the Kinks, who had a long career from 1963 to 1995. Their biggest hits include "You Really Got Me" and "Lola."

    • The telephone number on the "flyer" given out by Gordo is 555-0199. That same number is used on a flyer given out by the Stevens family in the episode "Where in the World Is Pookie Stevens?" of the Even Stevens TV series.

  • ALLUSIONS (3)

    • The title of the episode may be taken from the film Educating Rita (1983).

    • Matt: If you need us we'll be patrolling the neighborhood or in our Fortress of Solitude.
      According to the comic books, the Fortress of Solitude was the secret retreat and laboratory that Superman built in the Arctic 130 miles south of the North Pole.

    • Miranda: "It's against the Braniac code."
      Brainiac was originally the name of an evil super-intelligent villain with green skin in Superman comics, but in recent years it has come to be used to describe a super-smart person, one who makes high grades in school, etc.

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