Randy starts a romantic correspondence with a woman in St. Louis on a computer bulletin board, presenting himself as a 32-year-old dermatologist rather than a 12-year-old, but his bluff is ... See full summary »



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Episode cast overview:
Tim Taylor
Wilson Wilson, Jr.
Mark Taylor
Randy Taylor
Brad Taylor
Al Borland
Heidi Keppert
Joanna Daniels ...
Molly Lauden
Richard O. Covey ...
Himself (as Colonel Richard O. Covey)
Ken Bowersox ...
Himself (as Lt. Commander Kenneth D. Bowersox)
Story Musgrave ...
Himself (as Dr. Story Musgrave)
Claude Nicollier ...
Himself (as Mr. Claude Nicollier)
Jeffrey Hoffman ...
Himself (as Dr. Jeffrey Hoffman)
Thomas D. Akers ...
Himself (as Lt. Colonel Thomas D. Akers)


Randy starts a romantic correspondence with a woman in St. Louis on a computer bulletin board, presenting himself as a 32-year-old dermatologist rather than a 12-year-old, but his bluff is endangered when she decides to come meet him. Meanwhile, Tim helps Mark with his science project, but has to fight the urge to do it all himself. Also, Tool Time gets a visit from the crew of the Space Shuttle Endeavor (STS-61). Written by scgary66

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Comedy | Family






Release Date:

18 May 1994 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Jill Taylor: We're parents. When our kids play doctor, we nail them for malpractice.
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References Reality Bites (1994) See more »

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User Reviews

Fiber Optic Miscommunication
8 January 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Tool Time isn't just about tools for guys, as Tim and Al shows off some fancy, light-weight tools for women...and none of them are painted pink, just to let you know. There's also an evening bag, proudly displayed by Heidi, that has tools to fix any little problem a gal could be having while on the go. And as an extra incentive: a Tool Man in a Tote. Yep, they even included a blow-up doll that looks like Tim. At home, Randy's managed to rope himself an older woman roughly fifteen years his senior. He met her on that newfangled contraption called the internet, posting on a bulletin board. This girl, Molly, thinks Randy is a 32-year-old dermatologist, and he's constantly posting her love letters, derived from the ones Tim used to write Jill. Oh, if Molly ever found out the truth, heads would certainly roll. But she lives in St. Louis and there's no chance or reason for her to ever come to Detroit, so I think he'll be fine. Mark meanwhile has found a much more productive project: building a solar system for science class. Wanting his son to get the full benefit out of this project by doing it himself, Tim attempts to stand back and let Mark do all the work...but found he just couldn't help himself. First he insisted on painting the Styrofoam planet balls, and then when Mark started making the wires, Tim stepped in to do that too.

Suddenly, the doorbell rang. When Tim goes to answer it, he meets an attractive young woman named Molly. She's looking for Randy. Uh oh. Heads are gonna ROLL. So Tim and Jill discover the whole ruse, how Randy was lying to this woman and even copied Tim's old love letters. I'm sure poor Molly felt very awkward. So Randy's grounded, right? Eventually, but first they decide to teach him a little lesson. It all comes into play when Randy sees a new message from Molly, saying she'll be in Detroit on business and wants to stop by the house. He starts to panic, while Brad suggests telling her when she arrives that Randy Taylor moved away and that they're the new owners. That should work...unless Tim and Jill get to the door first. As for Mark's science project, Tim has a talk with Wilson who helps him to realize that since it is Mark's project, Mark is the one who should be working on it. And then, back to Tool Time, with some special guest stars: the crew of the Space Shuttle Endeavor. Immediately, Tim gets into a battle of wits with Ken Bowersox, who has as much of a sense of humor as Al does. The astronauts show Tim a video of the first "grunt" in space, and then they show all the hi- tech tools used to work on the Hubble telescope. Tim tries unsuccessfully to pilfer a few of them too. Boy was there egg on his face. Speaking of which... Molly shows up at the Taylor house promptly when she said she would. Randy managed to get to the door first and tried to get rid of her, saying Dr. Taylor doesn't live there anymore. Not buying it, Molly barges into the house, noticing a lack of moving boxes. However, Jill lets the cat out of the bag that this boy IS Randy Taylor, but when Molly talks about the love letters she's been getting, Jill recognizes them as Tim's writing, so she concludes it's Tim who's been sending love letters to Molly. Tim comes home, and acts completely oblivious to what's going on. Jill is set to cast him out to move in with Molly, which Tim seems to be in favor of. Frantically, Randy comes clean and says he only did it to "have a little fun." However, I think Tim, Jill and Molly had more fun than him, and I'm guessing his computer privileges will be revoked until further notice. And what about Mark's solar system? He got an A. However, he wasn't allowed to use the little orbital adjustment Tim made, and for good reason: it makes the whole thing spin madly out of control, sending Styrofoam planets flying everywhere.

That little situation with Randy and Molly has since become a growing fad, thanks to the advent of the internet and social media sites. Though sometimes not all of those situations get resolved like they did here on the show. This just goes to prove that parents should monitor what their kids do on the internet a little more closely. It just gets harder and harder with all the new technology coming out now adays. Even kindergartens have iPhones. We would've never foreseen this back in 1994. So anyway, Reality Bytes was a very good episode. I liked the little ruse Tim and Jill pulled on Randy, though I think it would've been nice to see him apologize to Molly for getting her hopes up and playing with her emotions the way he did. So I definitely recommend this episode, as well as the rest of Season 3, which I have now fully critiqued. Reality Bytes...be careful out there in cyberspace, kids.

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