The Little Theater is packed at Whit's End as Mandy Straussberg premieres two plays that she has written, each one starring the characters at Whit's End.
The first play begins as Nathaniel Graham rushes into the main room at Whit's End worried about how Whit ended up in the hospital. Suddenly, Mandy, Connie, Eugene and Bernard all think that somehow they had caused Whit to get hurt and explain what they thought had happened.
Connie explains that Whit ate a sandwich that may have had poisonous mayonnaise. Eugene theorizes that lifting a heavy box may have hurt his back. Mandy thinks that her hamster may have bitten Whit and Bernard thinks that Whit fell on his slippery floor that he just mopped.
Just then, Whit shows up and explains that he was actually at the hospital to visit a friend,who ate some bad mayo on a sandwich and got sick, then on her way to the bathroom she slipped on her freshly-waxed floor, knocking over a giant hamster cage! She tried to pick up the cage and threw out her back, and the hamster was so mad it bit her on the hand! though he's glad that the Whit's End patrons are starting to take their responsibilities seriously.
The second play begins as Whit is heading out of town for a day. He gives Connie instructions to make ice cream with the old ice cream maker, Eugene to fix a program in the Bible Room, Bernard to wash the windows, and Mandy to clean the Little Theatre.
However, the next day finds most of them doing anything but Whit's instructions. Bernard wants to put off doing the windows until tomorrow, Eugene is going to re-do the entire Bible Room program and Connie tries to use a new ice cream maker instead of the old one. While Eugene has opened up his computer in the Bible Room, Connie starts the new ice cream machine, but it doesn't work the way she thinks it will. It grabs her sweater and begins to pull it in. She yells for Eugene, who pulls the power cord and nearly gets electrocuted in the process. Just when it looks like it can't get worse, Bernard comes in to say he was hosing down the windows and accidentally sprayed in the Bible Room. Alarmed, Eugene runs to find his computer in ruins. Just then, Whit shows up and questions them why they weren't doing what they were supposed to do and sets them back to work.
- What were Bernard, Connie, Eugene and Mandy supposed to do while Whit was gone?
- Who actually did their job?
- Read the parable of the servants in Luke 24 that Whit mentioned. What do you think Jesus is telling us in this parable?
- Why did Bernard, Connie, Mandy and Eugene think they were each responsible for putting Whit in the hospital?
- What should they have done before they jumped to conclusions?
Heard in episode
|Bernard Walton||Dave Madden|
|Connie Kendall||Katie Leigh|
|Eugene Meltsner||Will Ryan|
|John Whittaker||Paul Herlinger|
|Mandy Straussberg||Aria Curzon|
|Nathaniel Graham||Blake Ewing|
|Mrs. Walton||Katie Leigh|
Mentioned in episode
|Rachel Straussberg||Mandy Straussberg|
|Stephen Straussberg||Mandy Straussberg|
|David Straussberg||Mandy Straussberg|
|Liz Horton||Mandy Straussberg|
|Joe Finneman||Bernard Walton|
VERSION DIFFERENCE: [view]
- In the original airing of the show, Chris called the show "It's All My Fault / I'll Do It My Way." However, in the album version and all subsequent airings, the episode is referred to by a single title, "Mandy's Debut."
- In the broadcast version intro, Chris still says, "Don't go away! The adventures begin, in just a moment!" as she does in the split episodes.
- This episode was originally intended to be a split episode, with two separate shows. However, to explain the live audience, Kathy Buchanan wrote the wrap-around scenes which were later recorded with Paul Herlinger and Aria Curzon on the phone. The splits were titled "It's All My Fault" and "I'll Do It My Way."
- This episode was recorded live at the National Religious Broadcasters Convention on February 7, 2000 in Anaheim, California. For a complete list of episodes that were recorded live, click here.
- This episode features a number of "lasts":
- This show was Phil Lollar's last as director (before his extended hiatus) and Al Janssen's last as executive producer.
- This episode marks Eugene's last appearance before the start of the Novacom saga and the last episode to feature newly-recorded dialogue by Will Ryan before his return from hiatus five years later.
- This is possibly the last mention of Joe Finneman.
- This episode features several allusions to previous episodes:
- The plot of the second segment, "I'll Do It My Way," is very similar to the plot for the earlier episode #62: “Let This Mind Be in You”, with various characters failing to follow Whit's instructions in his absence.
- Connie and Eugene's interchange in the kitchen, with Eugene crying out "I heard that!", is a riff on a similar exchange between the two characters (with roles reversed) in #443: “Changing Rodney”.
- This episode's sound of an ice cream maker gone awry was made with an old-fashioned typewriter.
- Both Whit and Chris say in this episode that the "parable of the servants" is found in Luke 24; it's actually in Matthew 24.
John Whittaker: She ate some bad mayo on a sandwich and got sick, then on her way to the bathroom she slipped on her freshly-waxed floor, knocking over a huge hamster cage! She tried to pick the cage up and threw out her back, and the hamster was so mad it bit her on the hand! Can you imagine all that happening to the same person... at the same time?
John Whittaker: <in Eugene's story> Oh, how nice! A small Eurasian rodent known as a hamster!
Nathaniel Graham: Wow, the hamster of death!