That '70s Show

Season 1 Episode 20

A New Hope

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Mar 14, 1999 on FOX

Episode Recap

A long time ago in Point Place, music resembling the theme from Star Wars, against a field of stars, the prologue scrolls by, reading, "That 70s Show Episode XXV, A New Hope. It's a time of upheaval for the Formans. Red's hours have been cut back at the auto parts plant, and his holiday job with "Bargain Bob" is long goine. Kitty struggles to make ends meet. And Eric is in the throes of adolescence...which sucks no matter what decade it is. Am I right? Anyway, right now Eric and his band of rebels are heading for a movie theater in Kenosha..."

In the Vista Cruiser, the guys are on their way to the theater; they're talking about the movie and how good it's supposed to be.

In the theater, they all sit, looking stunned and amazed by the space battle scenes.

[Scene change: flashing Vista Cruiser tail lights.]

In the Forman kitchen, Eric is excitedly telling Kitty and Laurie about Star Wars. Neither one seems particularly interested; Kitty tells him that it doesn't sound like a nice movie. Red comes in and tells Kitty that he's going back to work full-time; he saw Mr. Millbank, the plant owner, and got the news from him. Kitty is overjoyed, saying, "And to think how close we came to losing the house!" Eric is shocked by that news. Red tells Eric that he told David Millbank to come over and see Eric. Eric says he hates David; Red points out that he hates Mr. Millbank, but he still smiles every time he sees him.

In the Forman basement, the gang sits around talking about David Millbank. Donna reminds Eric that he beat up David in grade school. Jackie asks if David's the kid with scoliosis and asthma; Eric tells her, "Yep, and I kicked his ass." Kelso asks Jackie if she wants to see Star Wars; she suggests that they could do something else, hinting at having sex. Kelso tells her that they have their whole lives for that, but Star Wars is a limited engagement. She agrees to go, and they leave. David comes downstairs and both Donna and Eric are surprised at how he looks; he's tall, muscular and good-looking. David and Donna seem to be attracted to one another, leaving Eric feeling ignored. Eric immediately tells David that he and Donna are dating, which annoys Donna. David asks Donna if she's still writing stories; she says yes, which surprises Eric -- he didn't know this.

In the Forman kitchen, Kelso is going through the refrigerator; Laurie walks in and starts flirting with him. Kelso asks what she's doing; she tells him that she's bored. He points out that he and Jackie are back together now, but she continues to flirt with him and Kelso starts to lose his focus.

In the Pinciotti kitchen, David sits reading one of Donna's stories while she reads over his shoulder. He finishes and tells her it was great. As she goes to take it from him, she knocks over a glass of soda on him. Apologizing, she gets a towel and starts to dry him off just as Eric walks in and angrily asks what's going on. David leaves; Donna asks Eric what his problem is. When Eric tells her that David is hitting on her, Donna says that they're just friends and just because a guy pays attention to her doesn't mean that he wants to get her naked. Eric calls her naive; she asks if that's the reason that he paid attention to her. Eric says, "Of course!.......Not. Of course not," but it's too late; Donna is already angry with him.

In the Forman basement, in the circle. Eric tells the guys that Donna says that if Eric doesn't believe that she and David are just friends then she's going to think that Eric doesn't trust her. Fez suggests that Eric let David have Donna since they look so good together. Hyde suggests fighting David; Kelso points out that chicks like that stuff and then compares Eric's situation to Star Wars. They end up arguing over who Princess Leia liked: Han or Luke.

[Scene change: "That 70s Show" fades back from the front of the screen on a field of stars whlie Star Wars-like music plays.]

In the Forman basement, Eric is sleeping on the sofa, having a Star Wars dream, Red's voice tells Eric that a Jedi is his own master: Red, dressed at Obi-Wan Kenobi, gives instruction to young Eric Skywalker, who isn't listening. Red Kenobi calls him a Jedi Dumbass. Hyde Solo and Chewie come running in to tell Eric Skywalker that they just saw Princess Leia with Darth Vadar. Chewie takes off his costume head; it's Kelso, who argues that he should have been Han Solo. Kitty comes in, dressed in an orange flight=suit, vacuuming with an R2D2 vacuum. The doorbell rings, Kitty answers and it's Darth Vadar with two Storm Troopers, who turn out to be Jackie and Fez. They invite the others to the Dark Side, Fez telling them that there's free food. Eric Skywalker asks where Princess Leia is; just then, Donna, dressed as Leia comes in and puts her arm around Darth Vadar, telling Eric that they're just friends. As Darth starts to choke Eric with his mind, everyone begins to laugh. Eric wakes up.

In the Pinciotti kitchen, Jackie tells Donna that breaking up with Kelso was the best thing she ever did because it made him realize how much he missed her. Donna says that Eric is acting like a possessive macho jerk; Jackie is happy for her, but Donna says she liked Eric because he wasn't that way. Midge comes in; Jackie asks her to tell Donna that it's cool when men act like they own you. Midge agrees with her, until Donna points out that Midge took all those feminist classes; then she changes her mind.

In the Forman back yard, Red is clipping a tree while Bob stands by. Eric comes out and asks Red to show him some fighting moves; Red asks who he wants to fight; Eric admits that it's David Millbank. Red suggests that Eric beat up Kelso instead as he doesn't work for Kelso's father, but Eric tells them that he wants to fight David because he's hitting on Donna. Bob says that there's no way that Donna's going to be with "pretzel-boy" and Red agrees to show him a few moves, telling him that the bridge of the nose is very vulnerable. Bob suggests hitting him with a banjo.

In the Forman basement, Kelso and Jackie are talking about what to do tonight while Laurie puts her clothes in the dryer. Jackie tells Kelso that she doesn't want to see Star Wars again; he tries using the Jedi mind-trick on her which only makes her angry. She tells Kelso that he's weird and leaves. Laurie tells Kelso that she saw Star Wars and thought that it was the best movie ever made. She kisses him, and they begin to make out on the sofa.

In the Forman livingroom, Kitty and Red are watching tv. Kitty asks where Eric is; Red says he doesn't know, but Kitty doesn't believe him. He admits that Eric has gone out to have a fight, but it's no big deal. Kitty disagrees, calling men Neanderthals, then recalling a time when she and Red were at the beach and a lifeguard pinched her, and how Red stood over him, his bronzed body rippling with muscles....they both look at each other, then run upstairs.

At the park, Donna and David sit on the swings and talk. Eric shows up and challenges David to a fight. Donna stands between them, still insisting that David is only her friend and isn't hitting on her. David admits that he ~was~ hitting on her and asks what she thought he was doing, spending all that time with her, listening to her and sharing ideas with her. Donna is shocked, but Eric finds that he has a common bond with David over this. Donna tells Eric that he doesn't trust or respect her, and leaves. David tells Eric that it wouldn't have worked out between him and Donna because he's not going to be in town long anyway; his family is only staying until the plant closes down. Eric says that the plant is opening up full time; David tells him that it's only until they use up all the inventory, then the plant will shut down for good. Eric says his dad is depending on that job; David tells him that Red should have planned ahead the way his dad did. Eric, angry over this, punches David in the nose, breaking it. David stands up, holding his nose and breathing heavily -- like Darth Vadar -- and tells Eric that Donna will be his.

In the Forman kitchen, Red is putting on his jacket. Eric comes in and tells Red that he wants to talk to him about something, clearly intending to tell him about the plant closure. Kitty comes in and tells Eric that she's very disappointed in him for fighting, then tells him that it's ok, and goes out to the car. Eric asks where they're going; Red tells him that they're going out for dinner and a movie, and that sometimes life gives you a good bounce. Eric decides not to tell Red about the plant, and just tells him to have a good time instead.

In the Forman livingroom, Laurie sits reading a magazine. Eric comes in and she tells him that she made out with Kelso, then asks why he looks so down. He tells her about the plant and she comments that it's probably not a good time to tell Red that she's flunked out of college.

[End credits: Bob, Midge, Kitty and Red are at the movies, watching Star Wars. Midge asks if it's a true story; Kitty is trying to figure out who's doing the voice for Darth Vadar; Red says that Eric must be on dope if he likes this movie. Something on the screen blows up; Red looks impressed.]

Of note in this episode:

Fez's country has never fought a war.

Laurie tells Eric that she has flunked out of college; Red and Kitty still don't know.

While Eric liked Star Wars and was excited about it the morning after, it's really Kelso who goes overboard with it, wanting to see it over and over and even turning down sex with Jackie in favor of the movie. This is in contrast to later seasons, where Eric is the one who goes overboard on Star Wars.