Goober Takes a Car Apart
January 11, 1965
Andy Griffith as Sheriff Andy Taylor
Ron Howard as Opie Taylor
Goober assembles a car in the courthouse.
With Barney out of town, Andy finds himself in a bit of dilemma. He will have to be out of town for a Sheriff’s convention and his replacement has backed out on him. With no one to man the courthouse phones Andy scours the Mayberry phone book. Fortunately (or unfortunately depending on how you look at it) Goober is on hand and offers to fill in. After much consternation and a couple of flat out refusals, Goobers promises to be prompt and responsible work and Andy gives in and agrees to let Goober be his replacement.
The next morning Andy finds out that Goober never showed up (he was supposed to be there at 7:00 am sharp!). He finds Goober in the garage working on Gilly Walker’s car. Despite being up to his elbows in carberatour, Goober promises to get to the courthouse as quick as he can. A bit later, Andy calls the courthouse and there’s no answer. Instead, he finds Goober still working on Gilly Walker’s car on the street in front of the courthouse. Andy gives up and decides to ask Aunt Bee to stay. As he’s leaving for the capitol, Goober shows up, tells him Gilly’s car if fixed and promises to fulfill his obligation. Andy reluctantly agrees.
A day and a half later Andy returns to Mayberry to find a small crowd huddled around the courthouse doors. He walks in the courthouse and finds Gilly Walker’s car sitting in front of his desk. Unable to completely repair the car and unable to diagnose the problem, Goober explains that he began to bring parts the car into the courthouse to work on. That way, he could fix Gilly’s car and answer the phones at the same time. Before he knew it, he had taken Gilly’s car apart and put it back together in the courthouse!
Despite Andy’s rather angry demands that Goober "get this car outta here" Goober manages to get it partially taken apart (Floyd and Gilly keep distracting him). Later that day, Andy finds out that an old friend and the sheriff of a nearby county will be passing through. Desperate not to be the laughing stock of the Sheriff’s Associate, Andy races back to the courthouse to find that Goober has put the car back together inside the office. As Andy is desperately trying to disassemble the car, Sheriff Jackson and his deputy walk in. After a few tense moments, Sheriff Jackson concludes that the car in the courthouse is an object lesson, to remind drivers to be careful lest they lose their own car. Andy play’s along and saves his reputation.
A little while later Andy bids Sheriff Jackson goodbye. He leads Goober into the courthouse, takes a gun from the rack, sits down, aims at Goober and simply says "Get it outta here."
- I realize that the idea of taking a car apart and putting it together in the courthouse is preposterous to begin with, but wouldn't Goober need an engine lift, at least?
- So what safety "point" did Sheriff Jackson think the car in the courthouse was bringing across? That if you drive recklessly in Mayberry, your car gets impounded, disassembled, and reassembled in the courthouse for all to see? Hey, good enough.
- If Goober wasn't supposed to leave the courthouse, how did he get his tools to take the car apart?
- Very apparent in this episode is the practice of "covering" actor Howard McNear's footsteps due to his debilitating stroke. Floyd enters the courthouse and, after hearing him walk to Gilley Walker's car, he is shown sitting in the vehicle.
(Andy has come to Wally's Garage to get Goober)
Andy: It's Wednesday morning. You're supposed to be down at the courthouse.
Goober: I know it, Andy. I know it. I told you I'd be there. ‘Member I said I'd be there? Well, I'm goin' right down there soon as I finish workin' on Gilly Walker's carburetor.
Andy: You said you'd be there early.
Goober: Well, that's where you'll have to call me a liar on that early part. But I'll be there ‘cause I told you I'd be there and if I said I'll be there, I'll be there.
Andy: How soon?
Goober: Soon as I finish workin' on Gilly Walker's carburetor. Look at that carburetor – watch yourself, Andy, it's drippin'. It's off Gilly Walker's car. He's been troubled with the durndest noise in that car. First it was "cha-weet, cha-weet, cha-weet" and I fixed that. Then it was "pucka, pucka, pucka" like old banty rooster. I think it's all in the carburetor, so I'm takin' it all apart.
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