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The Wonder Years

Season 3 Episode 20


Aired Unknown Apr 24, 1990 on ABC
out of 10
User Rating
103 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

When Kevin thinks the best he can do in math is a B, his teacher Mr. Collins sets him the task of getting an A and even offers him private lessons. When Mr. Collins suddenly pulls out of the lessons shortly before the exams, Kevin feels betrayed and fills his exam with nonsensical answers.moreless

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  • Fantastic

    My favorite episode of the series. The ending was fantastic and very emotional.
  • Sometimes even TV characters can be the key to success.

    I first saw this episode back in Summer 1999 (had just gotten out of 10th grade, now going into 11th), and at the time math was not going well for me. I had managed to get a D+ average (but fell each MP), prior to me getting a 69F average in 9th grade (where I went to summer school and got a B+).

    Mr. Collins was very enthusing, and pushed Kevin lightly. From C to B, then from B to A. For two weeks Kevin and the old teacher bonded perfectly, preparing for the mid-term.

    But then one day, Mr. Collins has a sudden apointment which greatly upsets Kevin. (Of course, Kevin could have tried going to another math teacher or maybe Paul). But instead on the day of the mid-term, Kevin writes smart aleck answers like

    "Factor this?!?"

    "I don't know"



    Guilt gets to him late that evening, and he tries contacting Mr. Collins only to later find out he died. Kevin truly let the old man down, as well as himself. Later, the new teacher takes over and tells Kevin that obviously his mid-term got misplaced, luckily giving Kevin a second chance.

    Overall, I found that Mr. Collins had a wonderful impression on me, as his theory was to take it a little bit more at a time.

    This might have been one key factor that influenced me to do better in my Senior\Junior year (in fact I only got 3 Ds in the following 8 marking periods (compared to my two other years where I got more each year (sometimes each MP)).moreless
  • My favorite episode. This episode is priceless. If anyone ever wanted to see the impact a teacher can have on a student they need to watch this episode. Warning- you will probably cry at the end.moreless

    My favorite episode. This episode is priceless. If anyone ever wanted to see the impact a teacher can have on a student they need to watch this episode. Warning- you will probably cry at the end. This show represents so much for me as Kevin is the same age that I was in the same years that he is experiencing them. I find myself sometimes answering questions out loud and they are usually the same answer that Kevin gives. I guess because I have already been there and heard the question when I was that age. I wish that they would release the entire series to DVD.moreless
  • Farwell Mr. Collins

    Most of my teachers from Elementry School to Collage I'll never forget. From the ones I liked we've always carried a special kind of bond because they have taught me not just the requied educations but myself and how far I can truely go.

    This episode is another one of my favorates because it is the most emotional, I really did love the bond that both Mr. Collins and Kevin shared from the interplay going on you really felt it.

    It was sad when we discover that Mr. Collins passed away which makes Kevin feel guilty because he didn't do the test both of them have studied hard for. We know Kevin couldn't of known this he wanted proof the Mr. Collins and Kevin had some bond and Kevin doing what he did he feels he's betrayed him.

    But we discover in the end that bond has always existed Mr. Collins just doesn't show it is all which is sometime a same truth with some other teachers I've had. And the ending I though was bittersweet when we see Kevin has aced that test which leads to an emotional moment when we see the ghost of Mr. Collins congragulating Kevin and then disapearing. That put tears in my eyes.

    One of the most unforgetable people are teachers because they didn't just leave an impression on our heads but in our hearts.moreless
Steven Gilborn

Steven Gilborn

Mr. Collins

Guest Star

Phyllis Flax

Phyllis Flax


Guest Star

Sean Baca

Sean Baca

Craig Hobson

Recurring Role

Raye Birk

Raye Birk

Mr. Diperna

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

  • QUOTES (1)

    • Narrator: Teachers never die. They live in your memory forever. They were there when you arrived, they were there when you left. Like fixtures. Once in a while they taught you something. But not that often. And, you never really knew them, any more than they knew you. Still, for awhile, you believed in them. And, if you were lucky, maybe there was one who believed in you.

  • NOTES (3)

    • This episode won 2 Emmy Awards in the categories of Outstanding Directing in a Comedy Series and Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series at the 1990 Primetime Emmy Awards. It was also nominated for Outstanding Editing for a Series - Single Camera Production.

    • Linda Ronstadt's Goodbye My Friend is heard at the end of this episode as Kevin looks at Mr.Collins' desk.

    • This episode marks the finale of a three episode arc featuring math teacher Mr. Collins. The story began in episode 25, Math Class and continued in episode 32, Math Class Squared.