S2E17: “The Presidential Dilemma”

Synopsis: “The President of the United States invites Jem and The Holograms to Washington D.C. to perform for him. Since the security measures at the concert hall interfere with Synergy’s signal, the band has to take her apart and bring her along.”

Summary: Episode 43 (S2E17) is written by returning writer, Beth Bornstein.

We open at Starlight Mansion. The doorbell rings and we see Kimber answer the door, only to be greeted by two black suited agents from the Federal Government. They have a telegram that needs to be delivered to Jem, personally, according to the President’s orders. Jerrica overhears the conversation and changes into Jem and accepts the telegram (did they really need to send people to her home?). The letter reads:

Jem and the Holograms are cordially invited to perform a special concert for the President and First Lady at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.

The concert is the following week, however, the President invites them to meet with his entertainment coordinator the day after tomorrow, to make the necessary arrangements for the concert.

At the White House, Jem arrives and meets with Paul Davis, the entertainment coordinator. Men are seen doing strange hardware installations in the concert hall. Jem asks what it’s about, but Paul declines to comment as it’s a security measure. Jem heads back stage to check things out, but when the security team tests their equipment, Jem’s hologram is jammed and she changes back to Jerrica. Paul finds Jerrica behind the curtain and is startled and asks who she is. Jerrica introduces herself as the manager for Jem and the Holograms. Paul questions how she got back stage and why she was hiding behind the curtain. Jerrica’s excuse is that Jem had to run and left her in charge of the arrangements. Not pleased, Paul informs Jerrica that any future changes have to be cleared with him in advance.

Jerrica makes a phone call to her sister, Kimber, and explains that Synergy’s signal is being blocked, so the band will have to disassemble her and bring her to Washington, D.C.

The Misfits are watching TV when the announcer mentions a thief known as the “Washington Marauder” is back in the news again. Jetta demands the channel be changed, and of course they end up on Lin-Z’s channel where she announces Jem and the Holograms are playing a special concert for the President of the United States at the Kennedy Center. Pizzazz has had enough, turns off the TV, and tells the rest of the band they need to talk to Eric Raymond.

This time, Eric says there’s nothing he can do to help the Misfits, so the Misfits decide to take matters into their own hands.

A congressional hearing is being held in D.C., but the Misfits make an entrance and disrupt the event. They explain that they simply want an equal opportunity to host their own concert for the President.

Misfits music video: “Star Spangled Fantasy.”

The Misfits are promptly escorted out as everyone is thumbs down on the idea of the band having a concert.

Jem and the Holograms are seen by the Misfits, assembling the last pieces of Synergy. Whatever it is, it must be important, because they mention that without it, there can be no concert.

The Misfits head back to their room to spy on the band from across the street.

Pizzazz makes a call to Eric and describes the machine she witnessed the Holograms assembling in their hotel room. Eric mentions that it sounds similiar to the one his private investigator, Malone, discovered way back at the beginning of season one (in Starlight Drive-In).

In the hotel room of Jem and the Holograms, on TV, there’s an announcement that the Washington Marauder has made a video, boasting of his next crime.

Washington Marauder: This is a warning. For my finale, I intend to steal the country’s greatest national treasure. That will be the final piece in my collection (laughs evilly).

Lincoln Abbey calls Jem and invites her and the rest of the Holograms to dinner at the White House.

The final microchip is installed, but Synergy doesn’t boot up right away. There’s a moment of panic, but we eventually see Synergy’s face onscreen, who says it can take a while for her circuits to warm up. Jerrica and the rest of the Holograms transform and head to the White House for their evening dinner.

At the White House gates, security turns them away and explains the President was not expecting them for dinner. Confused at the miscommunication, Jem and the Holograms turn back.

Cut to inside the White House, where the President is engaged in a meeting and is watching the Washington Marauder’s video with the rest of his staff. The President asks his staff what the Marauder means by “the country’s greatest national treasure.” Unfortunately, no one has any idea, otherwise they would be able to stop him.

While driving back to their hotel, Jem receives a distress call from Synergy that an intruder has entered the room. The audience doesn’t see the assailant, but they unplug Synergy, which disables her holographic projection. The Holograms rush back to their hotel room and are greeted by an empty room–Synergy is gone. Raya notices outside their window, a group of men are loading Synergy into the back of a truck. The Holograms suspect the Misfits and chase after the thieves.

The Holograms follow the truck into the Pentagon. The band demands to know why their equipment was confiscated. The FBI received an anonymous tip that the Holograms had imported unauthorized equipment into Washington, D.C. The Pentagon’s experts will have to disassemble Synergy to do extensive exploratory work on it. If everything checks out, they should have it returned to them in a couple of weeks.

Jem and the Holograms music video: Time Is Runnin’ Out.

Using what little time they have left, Jem and the Holograms managed to get through most of the White House security, by engaging in a cat and mouse game with distracting holograms. The band is about to be placed under arrest, but the President interrupts and invites them into the Oval Office. Jerrica makes an attempt to explain that Synergy is really the backbone of their act, but she stumbles and hesitates to divulge the true secret of Synergy. Regrettably, the President is unable to call off the tests until he’s able to find out the truth about the computer.

At the Pentagon, computer experts are baffled at the advanced programming and circuitry of Synergy, which is light years ahead of anything currently available in the United States (they even claim it must have been designed by a foreign nation). The President drops by to order a temporary halt of the investigation of Synergy, at least until after the concert. The power goes off and the room is enveloped in complete blackness. The Washington Marauder has nabbed the President of the United States, the countries greatest national treasure! The van drives off and we see Jem hanging on.

The President asks the Marauder why he is being kidnapped. The Marauder says he plans on adding him to his historical collection, for preservation purposes. Back at the Pentagon, Kimber, Aja, Shana, and Raya scramble to reassemble Synergy. Unfortunately for Jerrica, her pleas to Synergy go unanswered.

The Marauder arrives in his secret, underground layer; 200 feet below ground, to be precise. There’s a massive collection of art and other priceless artifacts. The President enters his cage, which happens to be a very accurate replica of the oval office, where he is expected to be on exhibit for the rest of his life.

The Marauder’s goons end up discovering Jerrica and apprehend her, but before she is locked up, Jerrica grabs the priceless chalice once owned by Paul Revere. While the Marauder is distracted, the President manages to get loose and grab Lincoln’s cane.

Cut to the Pentagon, the Holograms are putting the finishing touches on reassembling Synergy. Kimber pleads with Aja to insert the final part necessary, even though Aja is unsure. She manages to do so before secret service agents stop them.

At the Marauder’s secret lair, Jerrica makes a final plea for Synergy’s help to create a distraction. Fortunately, Synergy is now back online and creates a hologram of George Washington. Startled and quite frankly, frightened, the Marauder is distracted by George Washington’s ghost. Suddenly, a second apparition materializes: Abraham Lincoln, then a third: Teddy Roosevelt. They all demand Jerrica and the President to be released, and then charge after the Marauder. The Marauder and his goons make their way to the jail cell, as it’s the only safe place. The keys are tossed to the President and he locks the cage. The President is confused at how Jerrica was able to conjure up George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and Teddy Roosevelt. On the drive back to the White House, she explains what Synergy really is and how the holographic technology works.

A press conference is held where the President is questioned by a member of the press about Jerrica Benton’s involvement in saving his life. The President explains that he also was responsible for taking control of the situation, but does not go into detail about what happened. The Presidential concert is announced and Jem and the Holograms take the stage, dedicating the song.

Jem and the Holograms music video: “Freedom.”

We end with the President bestowing the Presidential Medal of Honour, for courage above and beyond the call of duty, to Jerrica Benton, but Jerrica requests that Synergy receive the medal. Unfortunately, Synergy can’t have her own ceremony, but the President promises that she’ll be treated with the utmost respect, the next time she’s in Washington, D.C.

Duration: 1:00:21

Present: Alex Knight, Aleen Simms, K. Tempest Bradford.

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Download: JEMcast – Episode S2E17: “The Presidential Dilemma”

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