21 Jump Street rewatch: “A.W.O.L.”

Rewatching 21 Jump Street! This one’s got it all — comedy, melodrama, action, high school hijinks, and even obscenities. It’s season three, episode thirteen, “A.W.O.L.”

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Rewatching 21 Jump Street! This one’s got it all — comedy, melodrama, action, high school hijinks, and even obscenities. It’s season three, episode thirteen, “A.W.O.L.”

What’s goin’ down: A kid has gone missing from basic training. His drill sergeant is an old friend of Captain Fuller’s, and he asks Fuller and the Jump Street crew to find the kid and bring him back.

Action Depp!

Action Depp!

Here’s Hanson: While tracking down the runaway, who’s posing as a high schooler back at his old school, Hanson and Penhall find themselves in a week’s detention after a misunderstanding.

Penhall’s prerogatives: Penhall says he’d rather be sent off to Siberia than get his picture taken for the yearbook. Makes you wonder how many yearbooks these guys have ended up in.

Book ‘em: When Fuller’s military pal shows off his medals for the Jump Street cops, Booker responds with a “medal” he got at a Ramones concert. (RIP Tommy Ramone.)

Not the Ramones.

Not the Ramones.

Undercover blues: Once the troubled youth has been caught, it’s a road trip back to the military, where Hanson and Penhall befriend the kid and many confessions are made — until there’s another escape attempt into the woods, forcing our heroes to do the wilderness survival thing.

Goin’ to the chapel: Somebody’s calling Hoffs at the station with obscene phone calls. Thing is, it’s a woman doing the obscene calling!

"I'll just check my caller ID, and... Oh, right, it's still the '80s."

“I’ll just check my caller ID, and… Oh, right, it’s still the ’80s.”

Torn from today’s headlines: When meeting the A.W.O.L. kid, Hanson remarks, “At least he’s not an Ollie North wannabe.” This is a reference to the Iran-Contra Affair of the ‘80s, which made a celebrity out of the controversial Lt. Col. Oliver North.

Trivia time: This episode was co-written by Glen Morgan and James Wong, who became superstar writers for their stellar work on The X-Files. They then went on to create the Final Destination film franchise.

Everybody's bundled up in winter gear this episode. How big is their jurisdiction again?

Everybody’s bundled up in winter gear this episode. How big is their jurisdiction again?

Jumpin’ or not? This episode is a blast. There’s a lot of cheesy melodrama, but it’s buttressed by some great humor and a couple of cool “cop show” foot chases for some action. Nothing else to say except that this one’s great fun. It’s jumpin’!

Next week: It’s hot tonight and I’m ready tonight.

 ****

Want more? Check out my book, CINE HIGH, now available for the Kindle and the free Kindle app.

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About Mac McEntire

Author of CINE HIGH. amazon.com/dp/B00859NDJ8
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