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Full episode details for Shining Time Station Season 3 (1993)

Becky Makes a Wish

Production #42 (3.01) - First Aired: 1993-MAR-22 (US)
Written by Sean Kelly
Directed by Wayne Moss

Summary by J. Hunter

Episode Characters/Stars:

  • Stacy Jones (Didi Conn)

  • Billy Twofeathers (Tom Jackson)

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Mr. Conductor (George Carlin)

  • Becky (Danielle Marcot)

  • J.B. King, Esq. (Mart Hulswit)

  • Midge Smoot (Bobo Lewis)

  • Mayor Flopdinger (Jerome Dempsey)

  • The Jukebox Puppet Band

Episode Synopsis: It seems to be a boring day for Becky at Shining Time Station. But when Mr. Conductor’s Wishing Star gets loose, hilarity ensues; from Schemer and Stacy swapping places to Midge Smoot having her lips zipped! Will Becky be able to catch the elusive Star, or will the Station fail an important inspection?

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It’s a quiet day at Shining Time Station. Becky walks up to the ticket counter and tells Stacy that she’s bored. She asks if the two of them could play a game, but Stacy tells her that she can’t. Today is the day when J.B. King, superintendent of the Indian Valley Railroad, comes to the stations to inspect all the clocks, so as to make sure they are running to correct railroad time. At this, Becky walks sulkily away to the Jukebox, and then wishes that the whole day was over with.

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Meanwhile, the Jukebox Puppet Band is in their dressing room. When they hear Becky, they begin to feel sorry for her and Grace wishes that they could play her a song to make her feel better, to which Tito wishes that Becky had some nickels so that they COULD play her a song.

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Mr. Conductor then appears on top of the Jukebox, holding a bag and dressed in a wizard’s robe and cap. Becky exclaims that she wished that he would show up and wonders if he heard her wish. Mr. Conductor replies that he might, as he has just finished cleaning out the town’s Wishing Well. Becky wonders if all of the wishes will come true, but Mr. Conductor says only the ones in the blue bag will come true, because there’s a Wishing Star inside. He mentions that Duck the Great Western Engine’s wish isn’t in the bag. When Becky asks what he wished for, Mr. Conductor tells her the story of how Duck once wished that he could sail to faraway lands.

After Mr. Conductor finishes his story, Becky still wishes that something exciting would happen and asks if she could see the Wishing Star. Mr. Conductor tells her that it wouldn’t be a good idea, because this star is also a shooting star. But just as he’s about to explain further, Schemer approaches and he hastily disappears, leaving the bag with the Wishing Star behind. Schemer comes up to Becky and starts asking her what she’s doing in his arcade. While shooing her away, Schemer discovers Mr. Conductor’s bag and asks Becky about it. When she says it isn’t hers, Schemer immediately says “finders keepers, losers weepers”, and proceeds to open the bag hoping to find a nickel. Instead he releases the Wishing Star, which he takes to be a firefly.

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At that moment, Stacy comes up and begins asking Schemer if he has reset his watch for the inspection, to which Schemer starts making jokes and excuses. As Stacy tries to reason with him, Schemer wishes the two of them could switch places so that she could see how difficult things are for him. But no sooner is the wish made, the Wishing Star flies by. Schemer and Stacy literally switch places and have now adopted each other’s personalities, much to Becky’s bewilderment. Amid all this confusion, Mr. Conductor reappears, takes his now empty bag, and then disappears.

After that, Midge Smoot comes in looking for Stacy, but is instead greeted by Schemer, now acting as Stacy. She wants a new train schedule and Schemer immediately knows where they are, just as Stacy would. He even comments about Midge’s hat. A rather confused Midge then asks where Stacy is, just as Stacy, acting as Schemer, walks up and starts asking if she wants spend some nickels over at the arcade. Midge spots Becky and tells her she can’t wait to tell everyone about this strange turn of events. Becky pleads with Midge not to do so, but to no avail.

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While that is going on, Stacy is pounding and shaking the Jukebox, demanding that it either play her song or give back her nickel. Inside, the band is in their elevator trying to get to their performance room and get a bad shaking. As they hastily get into position so that they can play the song Stacy chose, “Celito Lindo,” they realize that Tito isn’t with them. They decide to start anyway, hoping Tito (who’s still in the basement) will pick up the cue. Tito does, and during the song, we see Schemer and Stacy have now swapped wardrobes in addition to their personalities as they continue doing what the other usually does throughout the day.

After the song, Mayor Flopdinger comes in, attempting to rehearse a speech. He asks for a ticket to Chubby Corners, at first not taking notice of “Schemer Jones.” As he continues to practice his speech, he’s interrupted by Stacy who asks him if he would like to “invest” in the arcade. The Mayor gets very confused as he looks back and forth between Schemer and Stacy, and finally asks Becky to explain to him what’s going on. Becky starts her explanation by asking the Mayor if he has ever wished for anything. As the Wishing Star flies by again, Mayor Flopdinger states that his wish has always been that he could “rise above” petty concerns, to fly so to speak. Sure enough, the Mayor rises off the ground and starts flying, which astonishes Becky, Schemer, Stacy, and Billy Twofeathers, who ducks at the last second as Mayor Flopdinger flies through the station entrance.

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At that moment, J.B. King walks in and announces that it’s time for the inspection. Billy notes that he’s early, but Mr. King decides to go on with it, since he’s already there. But when Stacy comes up, still acting like Schemer, Mr. King immediately begins to notice that all is not right and it infuriates him. Since he wasn’t due for another six minutes and 21 seconds, Mr. King decides to return when the time is right, with the expectation that when he does, everything will run like clockwork.

Mr. Conductor motions for Becky and Billy to meet him in the workshop so that they can figure out what to do. They finally decide that when they see the star, they’ll wish everything back to normal. Becky says she’ll never make another wish again, but Billy tells her that wishing can be a good thing, and how that some of the greatest things started off as a wish. Mr. Conductor agrees with Billy, and conjures a magic bubble which plays a song about wishes and making them come true. The song is so catchy Mr. Conductor starts singing along before quickly composing himself and disappearing to look for the star.

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The moment he leaves, Midge Smoot runs into the workshop and begins to tell Billy everything that has happened, from Mayor Flopdinger being able to fly to Schemer and Stacy changing places. After she leaves to do some more snooping, Billy comments that Midge has a good heart, but wishes that she would zip her lip. Realizing what he just said, he and Becky run back out to the station to find Midge attempting to talk to Stacy with a large zipper over her mouth.

Chaos begins to break out as Mayor Flopdinger comes floating back, still reciting his speech, and then Schemer comes running up, now worriedly counting down how much time they have left until Mr. King returns. Feeling rather flustered, Billy wishes he had just stayed in bed. But the Wishing Star flies by and Billy is now in a bed fast asleep.

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While Schemer is frantically trying to wake up Billy, Mr. Conductor manages to catch the star with a fishing net, and Becky quickly wishes everything back to the way it was, and it works! Stacy and Schemer are themselves again, Billy is awake, and Mayor Flopdinger has stopped flying, all of them of course having no memory of what has transpired. And just in time, too, because now Mr. King has returned for the inspection. After checking the clocks and watches (and having a friendly run-in with Mayor Flopdinger), Mr. King announces that everything is in order, as it always is at Shining Time.

Once Mr. King has left, Becky and Mr. Conductor release the star back into the sky. After Mr. Conductor disappears, Midge Smoot passes by, now without a zipper. She asks Becky why she and her friends always hang out at the station, especially when nothing seems to happen. Becky simply replies that sometimes a quiet day is everything she could wish for.

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Episode Morals:

  • Be careful what you wish for, because you might regret it later on.

  • Be content with what you have.

  • The best adventures are the ones we can only dream about.

 

Featured Jukebox Puppet Band Song:

  • Celito Lindo

Featured Magic Bubble Music Video:

  • Help Your Wish Along

Featured Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends Story:

  • All at Sea

Episode Notes:

  • This is the first and only episode where Becky appears without Dan or Kara.

  • This episode is the first where the Jukebox Puppet Band is seen in their dressing room and in the basement of the Jukebox.

  • The voice telephone conversation that Stacy hears before Mayor Flopdinger arrives at the station is actually sped-up audio from a scene with Stacy and Harry from Promises, Promises (see Season 1: Promises, Promises Episode Notes).

Schemer's Alone

Production #43 (3.02) - First Aired: 1993-MAR-23 (US)
Written by Wilson Coneybeare
Directed by John Ferraro

Summary by M. Cooper

Episode Characters/Stars:

  • Stacy Jones (Didi Conn)

  • Billy Twofeathers (Tom Jackson)

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Mr. Conductor (George Carlin)

  • Dan (Ari Madger)

  • Becky (Danielle Marcot)

  • Ginny (Barbara Hamilton

  • Midge Smoot (Bobo Lewis)

  • Barton Winslow (Gerry Parkes)

  • The Jukebox Puppet Band

  • Delivery Man #1 (Eric Fink)

  • Delivery Man #2 (uncredited non-speaking role)

Episode Synopsis: Schemer’s Mother is staying overnight in Snarlyville, leaving Schemer to take care of himself for the first time in his life. Instead of taking responsibility, Schemer tries getting everyone to do things for him, and pays his debts with IOU's.

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Becky and Dan are helping the adults with some chores around the station. Becky is helping Billy build a shelf, and Dan is helping Stacy change light-bulbs. Schemer is talking on the pay phone with his mother. She’s going to Snarlyville and staying overnight, meaning Schemer has to take care of himself. She makes him take ‘The Schemer Family Pledge’ that he will act responsibly and do a list of chores she’s left for him. But as soon as she hangs up, Schemer freaks out, complaining to Stacy that he doesn’t know how to do anything by himself. His mother has always been there to do things for him. Stacy thinks it’s a good opportunity for Schemer to learn about self-responsibility and recommends that Schemer ask for help if he needs it.

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That makes Schemer hit upon a “genius time” moment: He calls Becky and Dan over to play a game called “Do Stuff for Schemer,” where they do all his chores at home for payment. Despite their apprehension, the kids agree to help and head over to Schemer’s house.

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Later, Stacy and Billy wonder where the kids have gone. The answer is supplied by Mr. Conductor, who accidentally breaks the unfinished shelf when he sits on it. While Stacy thinks it is nice that the kids are helping Schemer, they should have told her where they were going.

Schemer has two delivery men bring in his furniture from home to the arcade. When they demand payment, Schemer tries slipping them an IOU, but through some “encouragement” from the larger of the two, Schemer pays them each a nickel as a tip. Stacy objects to the clutter and reminds Schemer that he should be taking responsibility for himself. Schemer replies it’s better to have people do things for him. For instance, Ginny has been asked to do his laundry. When she comes in with the clothes in a wheelbarrow, he orders her to do it again. When she demands payment, Schemer pays her an IOU, which she refuses until he pays her two nickels as tip.

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Schemer even tries to play a song on the Jukebox using an IOU, but the band refuses to play until he threatens to unplug the Jukebox. The Puppet Band responds by playing “Polly Wolly Doodle” as a charity gig.

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Back in the workshop, Mr. Conductor and Billy are finishing the shelf when Stacy comes in complaining about Schemer’s antics. Mr. Conductor calls the chores a dirty job that can only end up badly for everyone involved. This reminds him of what happened to James and Percy, and tells Stacy and Billy the Thomas story “Percy, James and the Fruitful Day” to explain. Billy agrees that Schemer’s bad plan could get him into a bigger jam than Percy’s accident.

Meanwhile, Schemer is ordering around Ginny and Midge Smoot in the arcade while he prepares to take a nap. He wants to hear a story, but Midge doesn’t read until he gives her an IOU. This version of The Three Little Pigs is limited to page eight, paragraph three, when the Pig with the Brick house charges the other two pigs a nickel apiece as “protection money” from the Wolf. Because the pigs don’t have any money, they are left outside to be eaten. A horrified Midge refuses to read another word.

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Becky and Dan return from Schemer’s house, also demanding payment. Schemer’s IOU, a “blinding agreement,” means he will pay them in sixty days (in other words whenever he wants to). Ginny asks Schemer if anyone has been paid for helping him. Schemer attempts to dodge the question, when just at that moment Barton Winslow appears on his motorcycle towing a covered dish on a dinner trolley. The dish has Crazy Crunchy Crisp Chips, a Pistachio Popsicle and a Double Whammy Triple Cheese Cowboy Beef Burger with relish. Schemer says he can’t eat all that, as he just finished eating 15 Chilly Willy bars. Barton doesn’t care if he eats it or not, so long as he gets paid. But when Midge tells him about the IOUs, an angry argument begins between all the swindled people about who will pay out Schemer first. In the confusion, Schemer slips away, inciting Barton, Ginny and Midge to chase after him.

Becky and Dan meet up with Mr. Conductor, who talks with them about Schemer’s irresponsibility and the importance of doing the things you promised to help with. To further cement the point, Mr. Conductor conjures a magic bubble that plays a music video about doing things on your own and asking for help only if you can’t do it alone. Mr. Conductor finishes the lesson by revealing the most important thing you can do on your own: admitting you made a mistake.

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The two kids realize that they owe Stacy and Billy an apology for not helping when they needed them and acting irresponsibly. Billy tells them the first step to becoming more responsible is learning to do better. Becky and Dan are responsible, because they realized when they were wrong and admitted it.

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Schemer, on the other hand, has figured out yet another way to get out of having to pay everyone for doing everything for him: A lifetime membership to Schemer’s Arcade, with a free machine use every ninth time they use one of the machines, once a week, every other month, leap year excluded. Paying everyone back this way amounts to 463 years by Schemer’s calculations. Stacy lectures him about how this will upset his employees.

At the window, Becky and Dan see Midge Smoot and Ginny talking to a woman who just got off the train: it’s Schemer’s mother, who came home early. Frantically, Schemer begs Stacy to help him straighten up the arcade, but Stacy refuses to help him, stating that this is one mess he’ll have to fix on his own. Midge comes in to tell Schemer she told his mother everything. His mother replied that one of these days, he’ll have to learn how to take care of himself and how to be kind to others even when she’s not there to take care of him. She’s waiting to see him at home so she can help him.

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Schemer thinks that means he doesn’t have to clean up at the arcade then, but trips over his own mess. The episode ends with him crying out “Mommy!”

Episode Morals:

  • Taking responsibility for yourself is important to growing up.

  • Admitting your mistakes is necessary in becoming more responsible.

 

Featured Jukebox Puppet Band Song:

  • Polly Wolly Doodle

Featured Magic Bubble Music Video:

  • I Can Do It: Music written and performed by Beverly Glenn-Copeland, produced by Vitale Productions.

Featured Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends Story:

  • Percy, James and the Fruitful Day

Episode Notes:

  • Schemer has a nickel-shaped rattle in his baby picture and has a nickel-decorated blanket.

  • The names and logo seen on their coveralls identify the movers as Mel (glasses) and Mack from Eggywegg Shipping.

  • In the episode's opening in the workshop where Becky helps Billy assemble a book case, it's very obvious that the shelf they are working on is severely off level where Billy puts the temporary nails.

  • When Barton Winslow wheels his motorcycle inside the station, you can tell that it's stuntman Cotton Mather from the exposed facial features.

  • The bright bank of studio lights' reflect off of Barton's motorcycle helmet.

  • Schemer’s Mother wears a hat with fake flowers and a plastic skunk on top.

  • The scene where Mr. Conductor is speaking to Billy and Stacy about Schemer tricking everyone into doing his chores was featured at the beginning of the 1995 Thomas the Tank Engine Man BBC Bookmark documentary.

Bully for Mr. Conductor

Production #44 (3.03) - First Aired: 1993-MAR-24 (US)
Written by Brian McConnachie
Directed by Wayne Moss

Summary by J. Gratton

Episode Characters/Stars:

  • Stacy Jones (Didi Conn)

  • Schemer (Brian O'Connor)

  • Mr. Conductor (George Carlin)

  • Dan (Ari Madger)

  • Becky (Danielle Marcot)

  • J.B. King, Esq. (Mart Hulswit)

  • The Jukebox Puppet Band

  • Buster (Ira Glasner)