Dodge wants to attend Chaz Dalton’s Space Academy, but like all future astronauts, he must first do the dishes. This reminds Earl of one of his happiest childhood memories, attending the space camp created by former astronaut Chaz Dalton (Matthew Glave). But Chaz is also on Earl’s list — Earl stole Chaz’s treasured spacesuit, played around in it, washed it and shrunk it to infant size. Earl goes to visit Chaz’s academy, and sees that Chaz still loves teaching kids about space. Chaz forgives Earl, but Earl is determined to get him a new spacesuit, so he goes to the local NASA office (doesn’t every town have one of those?).
At the NASA office, Earl and Randy spot a photo of Chaz on the wall, only it’s not the Chaz they know. Earl finds out that the real Chaz (Curtis “Booger” Armstrong) is a bitter drunk living in a shack. Earl tells Chaz that there’s an imposter making money off his name, so they go to expose him. The fake Chaz is really Wayne, who used to work with Chaz at NASA. Wayne wanted to be an astronaut but kept getting passed over because he had female-sized lungs. Wayne used to pretend to be Chaz at public appearances (Chaz isn’t a people person), and he loved being a hero. So he stuck with it.
The real Chaz takes over the space academy, but he’s horrible with the kids. Earl then finds out that the real Chaz is kind of a fraud, too. His father was a senator who funded NASA, and his dad’s office got him the astronaut job despite his being dangerously unqualified. Chaz says he’s going to shut the camp down, but Earl locks him in a closet so he doesn’t ruin the kids’ dreams.
While in the closet, Chaz discovers thank-you letters from kids who went to the camp, and he’s moved by all the kids his myth has inspired over the years. Chaz and Wayne end up working together to run the camp, and Chaz uses his connections to get a new spacesuit.
What We Learned:
Spacesuits are no match for a large, energy-inefficient ’70s-era dryer.
Even if you don’t have to go potty, try.
The space shuttle is fueled by dreams. And probably some hydrazine.
Nobody likes a black nerd.
You only need two friends: a fat one to make you look skinny and a poor one to make you look rich.
It’s not a joke if you really have syphilis.
Wisdom From Randy: Hey, look! There’s grandma!
Crab Man Chronicles: The Crab Man and Margaret Thatcher are no longer a thing.