My So-Called Life

Season 1 Episode 7

Why Jordan Can't Read

Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Oct 06, 1994 on ABC
out of 10
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Episode Summary

Angela makes a real connection with Jordan when she discovers that he has difficulty reading.

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  • Ahhh, young love.

    Jordan can't read, not that well anyway, and when Angela finds out, she believes she has this real deep connection with him because she is the only one who knows. Except i wouldn't go that far, i know Mr Racine knew Jordan couldn't read, but i guess that's different, because he was his teacher and all. Anyway, even though Jordan can't read, he is talented enough to be in a band playing guitar. Which is so cliched, why are all the bad boys in bands? Especially the ones the girl is always in love with? Anyway, Angela gets invited to see his band rehearse and Jordan starts singing this song to Angela and Rickie called, "Red". Red?? Hey Angela's hair is red!(i mean, crimson glow).The song is about her! Right?

    Meanwhile, Angela's parents are going postal, are we pregnant or just old? And her little sister is being so little sister-ish, crushing on the boy across the road, Brian, in a fashion so obvious it's not little sister-y at all. (i should know i'm a little sister). Angela asks if she can date, and her parents say she can, only if he doesn't drink and drive, only if they know where they are going, and only if they meet him first. The last one kills her on the spot, but you have got to give Ang kudo's for actually asking Jordan out to the movies, telling him he has to meet her parents beforehand. I think, she should of just spared everyone the pain and gone out with him in secret or something.

    Anyway, Jordan... doesn't show. But before that Brian tells Angela what he thinks of Jordan. And i cannot believe that Angela doesn't see that Brian is totally and completely in love with her... is she THAT blind? The next day, Angela avoids Jordan, and Rickie finds out that the song "red" is about his car. It wasnt about her after all. And then the episode ends with Brian and Angela playing catch in her front yard, with Angela telling Brian that she cannot wait for him to fall in love, because then he will understand how she feels about Jordan... but if she just opened her eyes, she wouldn't have to wait.

    This ep was great. It captured the tortured teen love thing PERFECTLY. And i believed every single heart wrenching moment of it. I seriously could not watch Angela rehearsing how she was going to say "Hi" to Jordan the next day... it was so real.moreless
Michael Lowry

Michael Lowry


Guest Star

Shannon Leto

Shannon Leto


Guest Star

May Quigley

May Quigley

Mrs. Learner

Guest Star

Johnny Green

Johnny Green


Recurring Role

Mary Kay Place

Mary Kay Place

Camille Cherski

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (4)

    • Angela: Love is when you look into someone's eyes and suddenly you go all the way inside, to their soul, and you both know instantly. I always imagined I'd fall in love nursing a blind soldier who was wounded in battle. Or maybe while rescuing someone in the middle of a blizzard, seconds before the avalanche hits. I thought at least by the age of fifteen I'd have a love life. But I don't even have a like life.

    • Ricky: Well, it's obvious what your song was about.
      Jordan: Ya, my car...

    • Jordan (singing): I was going nowhere, Going nowhere fast,
      Drowning in my memories, Living in the past,
      Everything looked black till I found her.
      She's all I need and that's what I said,
      I call her Red...
      She's my shelter from the storm,
      She's a place to rest my head,
      Late at night she keeps me safe and warm,
      I call her Red...

    • Rickie (to Angela): Oh, my god! Red! That's you!

  • NOTES (5)


    • Brian: You're bringing Jordan Catalano to The Bicycle Thief?

      The Bicycle Thief, also known as Ladri di biciclette, is a 1948 Italian film about a poor man searching the streets of Rome for his stolen bicycle.

    • Patty: Exactly when did I turn into Auntie Em?

      Auntie Em, a fictional character from the Oz books by L. Frank Baum, looks after her niece Dorothy.

    • Patty: The night we watched The Nutty Professor on cable?

      The Nutty Professor, a 1962 film starring Jerry Lewis, is about a nerd who invents a serum that makes him cool.

    • Camille: I plan on looking like Tina Turner when I'm fifty.

      Tina Turner, one of the world's best-selling singers of all time, is known for her energy and long legs.

    • Patty: We end up looking like Germaine Greer on the back of that book.

      Germaine Greer is an Australian writer and feminist. Her most famous book The Female Eunuch focuses on how women are taught to hate themselves.

    • Brian: So Chase, you still have my Malcolm X, right?

      Brian was referring to his book, The Autobiography of Malcolm X written by Alex Haley, that he lent to Angela.

    • Angela: I mean, what if Amelia Earhart had stayed with the group?
      Rickie: Or Diana Ross.

      Amelia Earhart, an American pilot, author, and women's rights activist, was the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. However she disappeared while flying over the Pacific Ocean and was never found.
      Diana Ross became famous while headlining the female singing group The Supremes. After a decade Diana left the group and established an even more successful solo career.

    • When Jordan is humming, Angela assumes it is a Crowded House song. Crowded House is an Australian rock group formed in Melbourne.