Lucy is hot on the trail of a great story for The Odyssey Owl. Apparently, the Calvin Bloom Company, a maker of fine skin and hair products, has been putting a harmful green dye in their Accu-Gel shampoo, despite the Food and Drug Administration’s ban on it. Lucy talks with Calvin Bloom’s public relations director, Jim Norton. Norton tells her that the company has fully complied with government regulations.
But Lucy has already come across a former Calvin Bloom employee who disagrees. This informant has told Lucy that Calvin Bloom continues to use the green dye. The person also informs Lucy about ‘a lot of other things going on out there that people need to be warned about.’
Lucy is excited about her scoop. She writes a defaming article about Calvin Bloom’s alleged cover-up. She is proud of her work, until Mr. Norton informs Lucy that her informant was fired for cheating on her time cards. The woman used Lucy to get back at the company. Lucy is stunned and upset. She writes a retraction, which the Owl prints, and learns a difficult lesson about the power of the printed word and the importance of wielding that power responsibly.
- This plot section is too short and should be expanded. »
- Why was Lucy so eager to uncover a story about the Calvin Bloom company?
- How should Lucy have handled what Miss Sadler told her?
- Why is the written word such a powerful thing?
- The events of this episode are mentioned later in #157: “Last in a Long Line” and #181: “It Takes Integrity”.
- It is mentioned in this episode that Whit takes skydiving lessons.
Dale Jacobs: Marjorie Sadler? Oh, no.
John Whittaker: What's wrong?
Dale Jacobs: Marjorie Sadler has visited my office a number of times. Every week she has a new complaint against somebody. The guys in the newsroom call her "the crank lady". Two weeks ago she said that the Nazis were putting drugs in the city water supply to make us all move to Germany.
Connie Kendall: Uh-oh.
Lucy Cunningham-Schultz: I may be little, but I'm not a little reporter!
Chris Anthony: Sometimes I look at things differently from our engineers.
The Daily Mudslinger interviewer: Oh, you mean they're difficult to work with!
Chris Anthony: Oh no, I didn't say that.
The Daily Mudslinger interviewer: Then you're difficult to work with!
Connie Kendall: Sometimes I forget what someone said two minutes ago!