Square One TV - Season 2

PBS (ended 1992)


No Editor

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Episode Guide

  • Episode 240
    Episode 240
    Episode 40
  • Episode 239
    Episode 239
    Episode 39
  • Episode 238
    Episode 238
    Episode 38
  • Episode 237
    Episode 237
    Episode 37
  • Episode 236
    Episode 236
    Episode 36
  • Episode 235
    Episode 235
    Episode 35
  • Episode 234
    Episode 234
    Episode 34
    "Dirk Niblick: Go West Young Mathematician, Part 1" Repeat of a sketch first aired in Episode 212. "Animation: Hexagons and Six-Pointed Stars" Repeat of a sketch first aired in Episode 115. "Dirk Niblick: Go West Young Mathematician, Part 2" Repeat of a sketch first aired in Episode 212. "Mathman Sabotaged" Repeat of a sketch first aired in Episode 149. "Stick Puzzle 1" Alison Smith asks, "How many squares do you see in this puzzle?" "Dggieweight Championship" Repeat of a sketch first aired in Episode 150. "Stick Puzzle 2" Alison Smith challenges viewers to move four sticks from the current arrangement and have three squares all the same size with none left over. "Mathnet: Case of the Willing Parrot Part 4" Repeat of a mystery first aired in Episode 204.moreless
  • Episode 233
    Episode 233
    Episode 33
  • Episode 232
    Episode 232
    Episode 32
  • Episode 231
    Episode 231
    Episode 31
  • Episode 230
    Episode 230
    Episode 30
  • Episode 229
    Episode 229
    Episode 29
  • Episode 228
    Episode 228
    Episode 28
  • Episode 227
    Episode 227
    Episode 27
  • Episode 226
    Episode 226
    Episode 26
  • Episode 225
    Episode 225
    Episode 25
  • Episode 224
    Episode 224
    Episode 24
  • Episode 223
    Episode 223
    Episode 23
    "Backstage With Blackstone" Six cards and dice provide a lesson in parity "Positives and Negatives Battle" The first battle in the war between the Positives and Negatives -3 +5 = 2. It's the only time the Positives win a battle. Repeat of a segment first shown in Episode 121. "Music Video: Triangle Song" A song about various types of triangles. "Triple Play" Matthew and Jamie compete in this Square One TV game show. "Person on the Street" A recycled segment asks people what a hypotenuse is. Mathnet: The Case of the Missing Air, Part 3moreless
  • Episode 222
    Episode 222
    Episode 22
  • Episode 221
    Episode 221
    Episode 21
  • Episode 220
    Episode 220
    Episode 20
  • Episode 219
    Episode 219
    Episode 19
  • Episode 218
    Episode 218
    Episode 18
    Skits include, but are not limited to: "Dirk Niblick caper" (presumed pilot) "2001" (repeat of a segment first aired in Episode 136) "Perpendicular Lines" (repeat of a segment first aired in Episode 151) "Mathnet: The View from the Rear Terrace, Part 3"
  • Episode 217
    Episode 217
    Episode 17
    Skits in this episode Include, But Are Not Limited To: "Dirk Niblick: Mall or Nothing At Mall, Part 1" "Close Call" "Mathnet: The View from the Rear Terrace, Part 2"
  • Episode 216
    Episode 216
    Episode 16
  • Episode 215
    Episode 215
    Episode 15
    The Mathnetters have visited the home of an elderly woman who is particpating in a television ratings service and found that the box that's supposed to record her viewing habits has been tampered with. They're involved in effort to find out what happened that caused the ratings of a program called The Mike Pliers Show to take a huge plummet. There was some sort of computer breakin and now households where people once watched The Mike Pliers Show are now recorded as watching The Vicious Vinnie Vermin Show. All of those people deny that they watch the program though. The Mathnetters return to the office, where George tells Kate that his wife Martha wants to invite her over for dinner. Kate doesn't sound too excited about the choice of cuisine, but says she'll come anyway. Kate and George discuss what's happening. They got back in contact with the eight sample families they talked with that were supposedly watching Vinnie's show and they all reported that someone claiming to be from the ratings service had come to do work on their ratings box. They decide to analyse the data and find 18 homes out the sample were supposed to be watching Vinnie. They talked to eight and none of them were watching it. George figures they can expect the rest of the 18 to say they weren't watching it either. Kate says that they actually can't be sure of that, but they do know that eight boxes were tampered with and that's pretty significant. They're getting a sketch of the man who apparently messed up the ratings right now. Mike Pliers brings them the sketch. They decide the person in the sketch looks harmless, but kind of familiar. Debbie Williams brings them one of the ratings boxes and explains that it had been altered to say that the television set was tuned to Vicious Vinnie. She's now going to head off to check out the other seven boxes. Kate notices something about the sketch. She draws a mustache on it. Now it looks like Wellworth Watching. She and George decide to head to Wellworth's home and have Mike Pliers come with them. They get to his house, but get no answer when they knock on the door. A nosy neighbor, a brain surgeon, comes by and tells them Wellworth Watching is never in at this time. She's also a fan of Mike's show. They return to the office and learn that in fact all the ratings boxings were tuned to Vicious Vinnie's show. They decide to go pay a visit to Vicious Vinnie, in person, while he's doing his show. They get to the studio and hide, while Vinnie spews his nonsense. Vinnie is busy teaching kids ridiculous stuff, such as that there are only two Great Lakes. He's been to all five and only two are anywhere near great. He also says that Chicago is the capital of Illinois. He then teaches that 0 times 7 is 7. This really outrages George, who knows full-well that 0 times any number is 0. Then, George seems to recognize something about Vicious Vinnie. George intercepts him as he's about to leave the set. He corrects Vinnie's misinformation and then removes phony glasses, nose and hairpiece. It turns out that he's actually Wellworth Watching. George asks him what the big idea is. Wellworth says that when they canceled his show, he swore he'd get back at the ratings service. He learned about computers and got himself a job at the ratings service. He figures he really showed them. He explains that he didn't even have to break into the office, he just hacked in from his home computer. He didn't even have to do anything with the numbers. He just altered the boxes. He's really proud of his scheme. He may be proud, but he's in trouble too. Backup help has just arrived and they're hauling him off. Mike Pliers then gets a call. He's back on the air. He thanks the Mathnetters, who exchange a high-five.moreless
  • Episode 214
    Episode 214
    Episode 14
    "Mathnet: The Case of the Deceptive Data Part 4" The Mathnetters get a call from Mr. Hoover asking them to meet him at the garage again. They bid farewell to Mike Pliers, who says that he enjoys watching them work. He's never seen a detective working before without a script. The Mathnetters go talk to Chief Thad Green and then head to the secret meeting place. Debbie, the head of the computer division, is already there, briefing Mr. Hoover. Debbie has been showing him a glitch which suggests that there's something wrong with the ratings system, although Mr. Hoover still isn't sure the system has been tampered with. Debbie points out something odd, about 20% of Vicious Vinnie's alleged audienc is 55 and above. Mr. Hoover suggests maybe he just appeals to old people. George asks again if the people who are in the sample know their viewing habits are being recorded. Mr. Hoover says that they do and the boxes that record their information are tamper-resistant. The boxes report what people are viewing to their computer system. The Mathnetters think that perhaps something is wrong with the sample. The Mathnetters ask for a list of his sample, but Mr. Hoover says it's secret. The Mathnetters finally get him to agree to give them a list of eight homes that are recorded as watching The Vicious Vinnie Show. They head to check them out. The first person they talk with, a young man, says that he watched it once, but now he's watching The Monotone News. He used to watch The Mike Pliers Show. He thought about writing a letter to his congressman, but he has trouble writing. And the congressman has trouble reading. They next interview an odd young lady with strong opinions. She, however, used to watch Mike Pliers as well and she and George share a program slogan. She now watches a nature show since Pliers was taken off. They interview several more Vinnie "viewers," but they all say they were watching something else. After they talk to seven people, they all have the same story. They visit the eighth person on the list, an elderly woman who at first thinks they're selling something. She seems to make a pass at George, but it was actually on behalf is a friend. George, in any case, is married. They ask her about Vinnie's show and she says she found it unwatchable. She too used to watch Mike Pliers, saying that he made Mister Rogers look like a "Cat-Bungler." She says that they should tell the Hoover people to leave her alone. She says they've been harassing her. A few weeks ago, somebody came by and fiddled with her TV set. She provides them with a description and says that he was wearing a three-piece uniform. Kate asks if he had a mustache, but the lady says he didn't have any facial hair at all. They go to check her television set and someone has broken the seal on her ratings box. That means someone could have altered the ratings.moreless
  • Episode 213
    Episode 213
    Episode 13
    Skits in this Episode Included: "Dirk Niblick Tease" "Music Video: Angle Dance" "Triple Play" "Mathman-Parallelograms" "Your Head" "Mathnet: The Case of the Deceptive Data, Part 3"
  • Episode 212
    Episode 212
    Episode 12
    "Dirk Niblick" Dirk is off on a Western adventure in Part One of "Go West Young Mathematician" "Bureau of Missing Numbers: 14" Repeat of a segment that first appeared in Episode 101 "Dirk Niblick 2" Continuation of "Go West Young Mathematician" "Time Check" Mathman gets involved in a time check: Since 3/8 of the show is behind us, how much is left? "Mathnet: The Case of the Deceptive Data Part 2" Arriving at the office in the morning, Kate says that she watched the Vicious Vinnie Show and that it was pretty bad. George calls it disgusting. George says he's not done yet with the fight to save The Mike Pliers Show. He's booked an appointment for them and the show's fan club President to visit the headquarters of the Hoover Rating Service to learn more about this ratings process that apparently got Mike's show cancelled. It's a very security-conscious company, but they've been permission to come over. He gets a call - they're due in at 10:30. They go to pick up the fan club president and then arrive at the ratings service. After signing in and receiving photo IDs with important personal information, they meet up with a company representative, Mr. Wellworth Watching. They introduce themselves as Mathnet and Mr. Watching wonders if they've been on television before. They say that they haven't, but Mr. Watching says that he has and that he was wonderful. They ask him what happened to The Mike Pliers Show. Geri Lynn introduces herself and Mr. Watching says that Mike's numbers went sour. He says that people got tired of him and that numbers don't lie. Even though the show may have been good, the ratings don't measure quality. He understands this himself because he feels that if they did measure quality, he would still be on the air. George remembers his program and doesn't seem to think much of it. Kate doesn't remember it at all. Mr. Watching says that it had a small but loyal audience. The Mathnetters ask him to explain how his sample works. He says that many people ask about it, so he's set up a demonstration. He's set up a bin full of flat green and yellow marbles. He has Geri don a blindfold so she can do a sampling experiment. He has her count out one thousand random marbles from the bin, explaining that the marbles are thoroughly mixed after every experiment. Geri draws 1,000 and then George counts the number of green marbles. There are a total of 284 green marbles that were drawn out of the 1,000. Therefore, the rest, 716, were yellow. Mr. Watching says to pretend that all the marbles in the bin represent people watching television and they have a choice of two shows which they can watch. Geri protests that she could possibly watch up to ten shows at any one time, but Mr. Watching says that it's just for simplification. Mr. Watching says that the rating for the green marbles is 28.4%. He shows them a chart that shows the last twenty people who did the experiment. He points out that everyone's results, although mostly different, almost all fall in a certain range, 270-300. There are rare execptions, but statistics show that the margin of error is generally no more than 3% in any direction and therefore it's quite accurate. As it turns out, 30% of the marbles in the container are green and sampling seems to give decent estimates. It's precisely how they measure TV ratings. The viewers live in what they call TV households and they sample them carefully, like the marbles to estimate what everyone is watching. There are 450 people in the sample and they can measure what people are watching with an average accuracy of about 3%. Still, Geri wants to know why the show was taken off. Then, a masked man shows up and says that he wants to talk with Mr. Watching. Seeing the Mathnetters and Geri, he gets ready to leave, but Mr. Watching calls him Mr. Hoover and tells him about how he was demonstrating the sampling process for the Mathnetters. Mr. Hoover says to carry on and leaves. They carry on, George wondering if the people in the sample know that they're a part of it. Mr. Watching says that they do and that they have tamper-proof computer boxes that record viewing information. Their system is very secure. He says that TV ratings isn't the only thing they can measure and dismisses himself, saying he has another meeting. He hands George some more information and says to turn their passes into the guard. Back at HQ, George is looking over the information, when Kate gets a phone call. After some conversation, she hangs up. She tells George that the call was Mr. Hoover. He wants to set up a secret meeting. Someone broke into his computer system.moreless
  • Episode 211
    Episode 211
    Episode 11
    "Mathnet: The Case of the Deceptive Data Part 1" Kate Monday arrives at the office and finds that George is outraged. He's so upset that he doesn't even seem to notice her, he's really more talking to himself instead. His favorite television program, The Mike Pliers Show has been canceled and he can't believe it. He's stood by in the past while some of his other favorite shows have been taken off the air, but this time, he vows that he's going to stand up and fight. This was a great program that was not only educational, but was quite popular as well. It was about a private eye who solve problems using his head and not his fist. George has made a "fan" call and the President of the Mike Pliers Fan Club and Mike Pliers himself are coming to the office. Kate thinks that there were probably good reasons for taking the show off the air, but George won't hear of it. Then, Mike Pliers and the fan club President show up. George greets Pliers at the door and can't stop shaking his hand. Kate says that George is a real fan of his. She introduces himself and they also both meet Geri Lynn, the fan club President. Once everyone's seated, they get down to business. Mike wonders why he's there and mentions that George said it had something to do with his ex-show. George says that he wants to know why the show was taken off the air and then he wants it put back. Geri Lynn is all with him. She wants it back on the air too and has been conducting a huge letter-writing campaign. It hasn't mattered though, the station says that the ratings are too low. George and Geri don't understand this, since the show is very popular. Geri doesn't even understand what ratings are. So they discuss the ratings and sampling process. Pliers says that he understands that if enough people aren't watching, then a show is taken off the air. That's just the way it works. George is still outraged though. Pilers says that the strange thing is that the ratings suddenly took a sharp drop. The station had told him he was doing beautifully, with a rating between 5 and 6. Then, suddenly, the ratings dropped in two weeks to 5/10 and they took him off the air. Sherry Lynn says that it shouldn't matter how many people watch. After all, she and the other fans were watching and they loved it. Kate explains the advertising process, saying that advertisers want to support shows that do well because then people see their product. If ratings go down, then advertisers look for another show that's more popular, such as the Vicious Vinnie Vermin Show, as Pliers mentions. Both George and Geri hate the show, but Kate has never seen it. As George describes it, it's basically a cheap, badly produced version of Double Dare or something. George calls it "totally mindless," saying that it teaches dumb, or downright wrong. Yet, oddly, it's gotten very popular quite recently. Kate explains the Hoover Rating Service, which samples the population. There are more than 13 million people in L.A., so they use a small group to represent them, asking them what shows they watch. It's a small sample, only about 1,000. George draws an analogy of just a doctor taking a small sample of blood to check it. Geri says it's unfair, as there are more than 5,000 kids in the fan club and nobody ever asked them. They get a phone call. It's for Mike Pliers. He had left their number with the answering service. The call is from Ding Dong Broadcasting, the station that played Mike's program. They think maybe he's back on the air, but it turns out he just has some maintenance to do. He left some things in his dressing room and they want them cleared out.moreless
  • Episode 210
    Episode 210
    Episode 10
    Skits in this episode: "Phoner" "Dirk's Mother's Number Pattern" "Backstage with Blackstone" "International House of Bologna" "Mathman" :Mathnet: The Case of the Great Car Robbery, Part 5"
  • Episode 209
    Episode 209
    Episode 9
    Skits in this episode included: "Dirk Niblick: The Lint Trap, Part 1" Fluff and Fold Noodleman have part time jobs at a laundromat. The owner tries to shortchange them at payday. "Count On It" Repeat of a music video first aired in Episode 103. "Dirk Niblick: The Lint Trap, Part 2" Dirk Niblick confronts the owner of the laundromat. It's not enough, Dirk says, to pay Fluff and Fold for just the full hours they put in, when the half-hours count just as much. "Animation: Spot the Hexagons" Where can you see the hexagons in this sequence? "Piece of the Pie" This time, Cris asks two teams to name something you do when you are bored. Contestants are to match the survey. "Cabot & Marshmallow" Repeat of a sketch first aired in Episode 119. "Mathnet: Case of the Great Car Robbery, Part 4" Nobody can find the stolen cars. Perhaps, Kate and George believe, they have been exported illegally. They ask the Chief Wharfinger, who insists no large shipments of cars have passed through Los Angeles Harbor.moreless
  • Episode 208
    Episode 208
    Episode 8
    Skits include: Triple Play" This Square One TV game show involving connecting numbers on a board pits Liz against Ryan. "Dirk Niblick" Dirk gets a call from his chatty mother about using Graphs. "Oops!: Fractions" A new installment shows how to properly add fractions, demonstrating a common mistake and then the right way to do it. "Common Multiple Man" Repeat of a segment first used in Episode 121. "Mathman" Mathman is ordered to eat only Pentagons. They could be concave as well as convex. Archimedes Beverly Mickens sings this Exclusive Music Video from the album Heads by Amber. Mathnet: "The Case of the Great Car Robbery, Part 3" The Mathnetters are deeply involved in this baffling case in the third installment. Debbie has classified that most of the stolen cars are Cadillacs and Lincolns. In addition, the majority of stolen cars were built earlier than 1975 and later than 1984. Kate and George consult with famed local car dealer Art Fraud. He, too, has felt the crunch of the Great Car Robbery, as more and more Angelinos have been buying cars to replace their stolen ones. Fraud tells Kate and George that cars were heavier before 1975 and after 1984.moreless
  • Episode 207
    Episode 207
    Episode 7
    Skits in this Episode: "Dirk Niblick Tease" "Backstage With Blackstone - Trail" "Square One Squares" "Mathman - Multiples of 5" "Dancing to Health and Back" "Mathnet: The Case of Great Car Robbery - Part 2"
  • Episode 206
    Episode 206
    Episode 6
    "The Lint Trap" The first part of a Dirk Niblick case. "Mathman" Mathman must eat fractions greater than 1, and wins a free game for succeeding. "To Heck and Back Part Two" The second part of a Dirk Niblick case. "Close Call" An installment of this Square One TV game show involving estimation. "Animation" 4 glasses are each filled 1/3 of the way. One by one a cup is poured into the succeeding cup, showing that 4/3 = 1 1/3, and that's more than one. "Prime Numbers" The Jets perform in this exclusive music video. "Animation - Prime Numbers" To reinforce this concept, an animation on prime numbers follows the music video. "Square One Puzzler" This segment asks viewers to figure out how many rectangles really are in a given grid. "Mathnet: The Case of the Great Car Robbery, Part One" Thousands of cars are being stolen off the L.A. streets, and very few are returning. The Mathnetters must get to the bottom of this puzzling case.moreless
  • Episode 205
    Episode 205
    Episode 5
    Dirk Niblick does an opening tease hinting of Blackstone's imminent appearance. Mathman must eat numbers that are two More Than a Multiple of five. Backstage with Blackstone: a trick with five envelopes Dweezil Zappa remembers how he learned of Combinatorics Exclusive Music Video: Tempestt Bledsoe sings Time Keeper Commercial: Pie Chart Mathnet: The Case of the Willing Parrot, Part 5moreless
  • Episode 204
    Episode 204
    Episode 4
    Skits in this episode included, but were not limited to: "Triple Play" A repeating game show on the series, in which the object is to gain three numbers on the board that form an equilateral triangle when the segments between them are connected. "Dirk Niblick - The Case of the Illegal Lawyer - Part 2" Siblings Fluff and Fold Noodleman are told by lawyer Morley Corrupt that their late uncle promised Fluff 1/2 of his estate and Fold 1/4 of the estate. Morley then informs them that he keeps the rest of the money and that Fluff and Fold will recieve 2/6, or 1/3 of the inheritance. Fluff and Fold suspect something and tell Dirk Niblick about it. The show announcer discusses the equeation 1/2 + 1/4 = 2/6 and asks viewers "what's wrong with this picture?" "Phone Call" Cast member Cynthia Darlow receives a call about a math problem-add five, multiply by two, subtract 8, divide by two, and the answer will always be one. "Dirk Niblick - The Case of the Illegal Lawyer - Part 2" Dirk points out that 1/2 + 1/4 does not equal 1/3, because 1/2 itself is larger than 1/3. Fluff and Fold's real share is 3/4. "Groaning Wall" (The full version of a sketch that appeared previously in 113) Cast members come through geometrically shaped doors in a wall and tell jokes, such as, "What has three feet but cannot walk? A Yard!" and "How do you make a seven even? You take off the s"moreless
  • Episode 203
    Episode 203
    Episode 3
    "Backstage with Blackstone" Famous magician Harry Blackstone demonstrates a trick with a number grid. "Dirk Niblick Quickie" Everyone's favorite animated math advocate reminds viewers that another epiosde of Mathnet will be on shortly. Piece of the Pie This recurring game show of Seasons 2 and 3 combines elements of Family Feud and old Jack Barry-Dan Enright game shows Hot Potato and Play the Percentages. Asked the question, "What do parents tell kids not to waste?", teams of three kids huddle to find answers that made the survey. "Combo Jombo" A new music video features Regina singing about combinatorics "Mathman" Mathman is instructed to eat only Square Numbers, in other words, numbers that can be made by multiplying two of the same number, such as 4 * 4 = 16. "Mathnet: The Case of the Willing Parrot, Part 3" George finds the missing parrot by uttering the numbers "1, 1, 2, 3," a fibonacci sequence the parrot has become familiar with. It's a link toward finding the treasure of Fatty Tissue.moreless
  • Episode 202
    Episode 202
    Episode 2
    Skits in this Episode: "Dirk Niblick Tease" "Exclusive Music Video: Estimation" "Close Call: Premiere" "Animation: Times 0" "Spot the Quadrilaterals" "Mathman: A New Season" "Mathnet: The Case of the Willing Parrot, Part 2"
  • Episode 201
    Episode 201
    Episode 1
    Skits in this Episode Included: "Square One Squares" An early form version of the game that would later be known on the show as "Square One Challenge." Contestants Michelle and Diana try to guess whether two of the show's regular cast members are telling the truth about something mathematical or bluffing. Unlike in later versions of the game, in any particular problem, one of them is bluffing and the other is telling the truth. (Whereas with the later versions, both could be bluffing or both could be telling the truth.) The contestants are awarded points based on their guesses and the one of the most points gets great Square One TV merchandise and bragging rights and the winner gets other Square One TV merchandise. "Dirk Niblick" A Dirk Niblick episode in which the theme is "You can fool most of the people most of the time." Season Two of Square One TV introduced lyrics for Dirk Niblick's theme song, lyrics that were only included in the Season Two episodes of Dirk. This segment finds Dirk's neighbor, Mr. Beasley, looking to buy a new car. He comes across a slick dealership who is offering a 30% off sale. What Mr. Beasley doesn't know, though, is that this dealership is doing some funny math by giving three 10% discounts only on particular features of the car and claiming that they add up to 30%. Dirk Niblick exposes the truth, that not only does 10% off + 10% off + 10% off not add up to 30% off, but that the discounts are even more worthless if they don't apply to the entire $10,000 price of the car. "One Billion is Big" The Fat Boys do another music video about one billion, which is a million times a thousand. They compare a million to a thousand. "Animation" A pattern of equations is shown: 3 * 37 = 111 6 * 37 = 222 9 * 37 = 333 12 * 37 = 444 ? * 37 = 555 What number times 37 equals 555? "Mathnet: The Case of the Willing Parrot Part 1" The first of five parts of the Mathnet series, "The Case of the Willing Parrot." In this segment, a boy calls George and Kate complaining of strange noises in his household. When George and Kate first come to investigate, they can't find anything wrong. But after hearing the strange noises themselves, they make a determination: they're simply the wind.moreless