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Girl Meets STEM/Transcript

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The following is the transcript for Girl Meets STEM:

Interior. John Quincy Adams Middle School, science laboratory. Maya and Riley enter.
Maya: (resentfully) Boo this class.
Riley: Do you even know which one it is?
Maya: I'm going to need a clue. (picks up a beaker)
Farkle: (jumps through doorway of science laboratory, enthusiastically dancing by pointing in random directions) Doo dah, doo, dah, doo doo dah, da da da da da dah!
Maya: Science.
(Farkle walks toward the far end of the classroom, where Mr. Norton is standing.)
Mr. Norton: Morning, Farkle! What's new?
Farkle: I'm reading this great book on anti-gravity. I can't put it down!
Mr. Norton: (pointing at Farkle) Hah!
Farkle: (pointing back at Mr. Norton) Hah!
Maya: (walking to her seat at one of the lab stations) I hate this class.
(The rest of the class enters the laboratory and takes their seats. Farkle joins Riley at her station, while Lucas joins Maya at hers.)
Mr. Norton: (wheeling a portable podium) Ladies and gentlemen, I invite you to join me on a journey of discovery. Your midterm experiment.
(The whole class groans.)


(happily) Yay.


(turning to Lucas, eyes closed) Do I look sleepy to you?

Mr. Norton:

In front of you, each team will find a beaker of a clear liquid solution.
Maya: (eyes still closed, swaying slightly) Oh, boy, he's like a sleep machine.
Mr. Norton: And next to that, and here's where it gets exciting - a mystery marble! (holds up an example of the marble)


(Maya falls forward. Lucas catches her chin in his hand before she hits the table.)

Mr. Norton:

Right after school, precisely at 3:15, one member of each team will drop the marble into the beaker. The elements in the marble will break down overnight and turn into sludge. Then the other team member will discover what that sludge is and what it takes to turn the beaker back to clear.
Riley: Who's supposed to do what?
Mr. Norton: Well, that's up to you! You're a team! Divide the responsibilities as you see fit. I've been conducting this experiment for thirty-five years. (waving a journal in the air) I've kept thorough notes. Very few have cracked it.
Farkle: Well, you can add my name to your journal right now, sir.
Mr. Norton: I hope so, Farkle. (to the rest of the class at large) Let the games begin!


(still holding Maya's chin in his hand) Okay, you get that?
Maya: (sleepily, discontentedly) I have to do something? (slowly returns to an upright sitting position)
Lucas: All you have to do is come in this afternoon and drop a marble.


(still discontent) I have to drop a marble?
Lucas: (picking up the marble and holding it in front of Maya) I will pick it up and hand it to you.
Maya: (in a slightly horrified voice) I have to take it from you?
Lucas: That's it.
Maya: (still discontent) But how's my hand supposed to get to the beaker?


(moves the beaker to the edge of the desk) You know what? Let's just move the beaker to the very edge of the desk so you don't even have to lean forward.
Maya: But I have to put this (indicates marble) in that? (indicates beaker)
Lucas: That's it.
Maya: (looking like she's about to cry) It's too much.


Okay, Riley. You drop the marble, I'll figure out the sludge and earn us yet another A.
Riley: (in some confusion) Okay, that's all I have to do?
Farkle: Well, I am the scientist around here.


(shaking her head) Farkle, I don't understand why I can't -
Farkle: You do want an A, don't you?
(Riley looks at him, then looks back at the marble, holding it up.)
Interior. John Quincy Adams Middle School, hallway, after school has ended for the day. Riley and Maya walk down the hallway towards the science laboratory together.
Riley: (frowning) I don't like this.
Maya: (also frowning) I don't like this either.
Riley: Something's wrong. Why do we have to drop the marble while Farkle and Lucas do the science?
Maya: (angrily) Why is school over and I don't got a chimichanga?
Riley: Maya, something's wrong. I feel like there's a real problem here but I just can't see what it is yet.
(Riley pushes the door to the science laboratory open and both girls walk in. Various close-ups show that there are only girls present in the laboratory.)
Riley: (narrowing her eyes) Now I see it.
Maya: I see nothing unusual.
Riley: (walking towards her station and proclaiming loudly) Social injustice.
Maya: (following behind her) Drop your marble and go.
Riley: (to all the girls) If you drop these marbles, you are buying into a system where the women, what? Buy shoes? While the men learn the science.
Yindra: (enthusiastically) Shoes. Let's go.
Haley: The system works.
(Every girl except Riley and Maya drop their marbles into their respective beakers and head towards the exit.
Riley: (indignantly, turning to look at the girls leaving) No.
(The rest of the girls run out anyway.)
Riley: Maya, I am very disappointed in our sisters. They don't believe we can do what the boys can do?
Maya: (insistently motioning towards her mouth) Chi, mi, chan, ga!
(Riley glares at Maya. Maya glares back for a moment, then starts to move past Riley towards her station. Riley stops her.)
Riley: You are not going to drop your marble.
Maya: (nodding) Oh, I'm going to drop my marble.
Riley: (shakes her head)
Maya: But, to make you feel better, I'm gonna drop it like a dude.
(Maya moves backwards, to Riley's confusion.)
Maya: Maya! (jumping, as if catching the marble from a fellow teammate) Takes the bounce pass! (dribbling the marble around another station back towards Riley) She dribbles down the court, three seconds left on the clock! Her opponents are tall, useless goofs! Maya fakes left, (turns right) turns right -
Riley: (covering her ears desperately) Just stop, tell me which way you're going!
Maya: (throws the marble towards her beaker) She shoots - (the marble lands in the beaker) scores! Nothing but beaker.
(Riley cautiously lowers her arms from her ears. Maya motions towards Riley's beaker.)
Maya: Your turn, goose.
(Riley walks towards her station, holding her marble up and examining it thoughtfully.)

Title plays. Then: Interior. John Quincy Adams Middle School, science laboratory. Most of the class has assembled at their respective stations. Farkle dances enthusiastically through the doorway.

Farkle: Doo dah, doo dah doo dah da da (points enthusiastically at the beaker of sludge on Sarah and Zay's station) dah da da dah da da dah da da dah dah -
(Farkle turns around at his and Riley's station and spots the clear beaker on their station. He looks in confusion at Riley. Riley holds up the marble in one hand with an apologetic expression.)
Riley: I -
Farkle: (looks in disbelief at the marble, at Riley, and back again. His eyes roll back in his head and he collapses onto the floor.)
(Riley looks concerned, but Farkle immediately jumps back on his feet.)
Farkle: (in confusion) What happened?
(Riley looks delighted and relieved.)
Farkle: I don't get it. Science is my favourite time of day. What happened? I'm gonna retrace my steps.
(Farkle backs out of the classroom, while Riley and the rest of the class look on in trepidation.)
Farkle: (repeating his dance from his first entry, slower this time) Doo dah, (thoughtfully) doo dah, doo dah doo dah doo, (points enthusiastically at the beaker of sludge on Sarah and Zay's station) doo dah doo (spots the clear beaker on his and Riley's station) dah -
Riley: (holding up the marble in one hand with an apologetic expression) I -
Farkle: (realisation dawning on him as he looks from the marble in Riley's hand to the clear beaker on their station) Oh. That's the reason right there. (his eyes roll back in his head and he collapses onto the floor again)
(Still on the floor, Farkle gains back his consciousness and frowns in confusion. A high-pitched, sped-up version of Riley's voice plays. A blurry Riley slowly comes into focus.)
Riley: (high-pitched, sped-up version of her voice) It all started with Eve. Women have been treated as second-class citizens ever since. Thank goodness for strong women like Queen Elizabeth - (her voice returns to normal) - and then Susan B. Anthony helped get women the vote, and then Betty Friedan wrote The Feminine Mystique, and then Riley Matthews refused to drop the marble and then here we are.
Farkle: (from the floor, exasperatedly) You had one job to do.
Riley: (in disgust) You mean take care of the babies, Farkle?
Farkle: (immediately back on his feet, staring at her, wide-eyed) What? (turning frantically to Zay) How long have I been out?
Riley: (heading back to her seat at their station) I'm taking a stand.
Farkle: (to Maya) How could you let her do this?
Maya: She's on a mission, Farkle. Have you met her?


Riley, you don't actually think Farkle had you drop the marble because you're a girl, do you?
Riley: We were all girls, Lucas. Every single set of lab partners sent the girl.
Mr. Norton: Yes, that's interesting, isn't it?
Riley: Why is that?
Farkle: (frantically, to Mr. Norton) I'll tell you what it is. It's a redo. She failed. I didn't fail. (growing panicky) I want a redo. (falling to his knees and grabbing Mr. Norton's leg) I want a redo, man!
Mr. Norton: (trying to walk across the classroom with Farkle still clinging to his leg) No redo! Equal responsibility, one shared grade. (Farkle lets go of his leg and stands up.)
Riley: That's right. We should be equal. Why do you guys think we're the ones who should drop the marble while you figure out the science?
Zay: Hey, it's not like you guys begged us to do it. (to Sarah) Did you want to do the science?
Sarah: (shrugging) I was okay with you doing it.
Riley: (exasperatedly) Sarah, how is that going to help us? (addressing the whole class) How are we going to become scientists if we don't learn this stuff?
Hayley: So I won't be a scientist.
Riley: Why not? Nobody wants to be the first girl on Mars?
(At the back of the class, Brenda turns around, clutching a test tube in hand, and waves excitedly.)
Riley: (pointing at Brenda) Represent, Brenda! But one's not enough. Bay window. (fiercely) Bay window all of ya!
Interior. Riley's bedroom. All the girls from Riley's science class are seated around and on her bay window. Riley stands in the centre, and Topanga stands in the doorway to Riley's bedroom.
Riley: (angrily) Tell 'em, mommy, get 'em! Tell them they're a disgrace to our entire whatever.
Topanga: (smiling) Welcome to our home.
Riley: (indignantly) No nice; go for the kill!
Topanga: Unfortunately, Riley, this is a serious problem. Other girls your age start to drift away from STEM subjects. Science, technology, engineering, math - the research shows we tend to play the roles we think we're supposed to.
Maya: Hey, I'm me.
Topanga: (proudly) Yes you are, you Amazon warrior. Have I told you how fond I am of you?
Maya: (smiling) Tell me.
Topanga: (also smiling) I am.
Riley: She dropped her marble.
Topanga: (shocked) Maya!
Maya: What? I'm not trying to hurt the girl thing, I'm just lazy.
Topanga: (walking to sit in the bay window between Riley and Maya) You can't be lazy! And you cannot think that it is more important to be liked than it is to be leaders. Don't talk yourself out of pursuing something because you're afraid of how it's gonna make you look. What you need to know is: don't let anybody get in the way of pursuing your growth and your curiosity, no matter what you want to do!
Sarah: I wanna be the best I can, and I want everybody to like me, and I dropped the marble and I want your shoes.
Topanga: (frowns)
Sarah: (slowly) I wanna work at the company that makes your shoes.
Topanga: (gives her an encouraging smile)
Sarah: I wanna run the company that makes your shoes.
Topanga: (claps her hands together, smiling) Yes.
Riley: Well, if we want it all, we can't let other people do the work for us.
Maya: Then I'm out.
Riley: You're in.
Maya: I'm in! (hesitantly) It's not going to take long, is it?
Riley: The rest of our lives.
Topanga: (pats Riley's knee proudly) That's my girl.
Maya: (frustratedly, under her breath) Why's it always gotta be the rest of our lives?
Topanga: That's my other girl.

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