Boston Public

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Boston Public (2000–2004) was a television series, created by David E. Kelley, about the personal and professional lives of teachers working at a public high school in Boston.


Season 1[edit]

Chapter One [1.1][edit]

Scott Guber: Where's Ms. Hendricks?
Student: We think she's dead, sir.
Scott Guber: And why do you think that, Ms. Washington?
[Student points to words on a chalkboard: GONE TO KILL MYSELF, HOPE YOU'RE HAPPY!!!]

Steven Harper: We do not help kids one by one here. Too many of them, too few of us. We serve masses, hoping more of them make it than don't. And our best results, like it or not, come with policy.

Student: Jefferson used to sleep with his slaves. The book don't say nothin' about that. They don't even say how he even had slaves. Washington neither. So I don't see why I should bust my black ass reading about a bunch of lies.
Harvey Lipschultz: Well, you see Mr. Jackson, my job is to see that you get your black ass into college. And whether these things in these books be lies or not, your achievement tests that you will be taking are standardized. And you'll have to know all these untruths in order for you to pass them, and how many slaves Jefferson had sex with will not be on the test. And if you fail American History, Mr. Jackson, you'll be sitting here again next year. And you'll have to listen all over again to what my shriveled, white, Jewish ass has to say.

Mr. Harrelson: You told my son that giving him the ball is not the answer. Best he learn that now. Best he learn that in eighth grade, or seventh grade, or even sooner, don't you think, Ms. Davis? Now maybe I failed some things as his dad, but this school failed him, too. These teachers here kept promoting him, didn't they? This school never got him the message. And now you're trying to send it? Now when college scouts are coming, now when football is about to deliver him an education at the University, now you people want to rise up and deliver him the message that athletics ain't everything?

Chapter Two [1.2][edit]

Harvey Lipschultz: All through history, when men look at women, they want to have sex. Now, God did this on purpose to ensure the survival of the human species. And he also gave women lumps, known as breasts, to inspire in man the penile urge to procreate. Now, this was very good for mankind, but not for womankind. Now, how could she succeed in this world, and how could she be respected for all her values, when men just want to mount her? Research eventually showed that it was those dangling bouncing breasts that cause special excitement to the man's blood flow. It was determined that the brassiere could stop this dangling, bouncing motion. The man would be less likely to objectify the woman and she would have a fighting chance at equality. You must harness your bosoms in order to squash the discrimination by the male gonads. This country can never maximize its potential until you can achieve equality. That's why I must make a rule, right here, and right now: wear a bra, for the good of the country.

Dana Poole: I'm not getting expelled. Guber decided to give me a three-day suspension... Did you have anything to do with it?
Harry: Listen to me. Whether or not I did, here's how it's gonna be. You come to me ever again, ever, and try to extort me for anything, I don't care if it's even a hall pass, I'm going to Harper and Guber myself and I'm going to tell them everything. You got that?
Dana Poole: Why would you do that?
Harry: Because I made a mistake with you, Dana, and I'm not going to make another one.

Superintendant Marsha Shinn: "Dragon Lady"? Is that what they call me?
Steven Harper: Only when you're in the room.

Harvey Lipschultz: My granddaughter Karen, who I thought was you for a second, is just as mischievous with her computer. You two would probably get along.
Cheryl Holt: Does she go here?
Harvey Lipschultz: No. She lives in Weymouth. Hardly ever leaves the house. Always with her computer. Knows how to make those virus things that make the websites crash. I know very little about those things. But she wouldn't stop at anything.

Lauren Davis: Three siblings. Two are doctors, the other's an investment banker. And to my parents, I'm the one who didn't make anything of herself. I can still hear my father's words: "What a waste, Lauren. You are so smart. You could actually be somebody." Something we battle every day is disrespect. We get it from the kids because it comes from the parents. And look at what we make!
Steven Harper: You know what your problem is, Lauren? You don't have any idea how powerful you are. Things you say in that classroom some of those kids are going to remember fifty years from now, even if you've forgotten by the sound of the next bell. Do you like being a teacher?
Lauren Davis: I love it.
Steven Harper: Then what are you complaining about?

Chapter Three [1.3][edit]

Harvey Lipschultz: [to Marla] The kids are already afraid of you because they think you have mental problems. I mean that as a compliment.

Harry Senate: The assignment was the read the book. Did anybody read the book?
Harry Senate: Jamal, what do you want to be when you grow up?
Jamal: Not a teacher.
Harry Senate: You know, as a teacher, it would be inappropriate for me to tell you that you're a total screw-up. So what I want you to do is go home and ask your father, as a favor to me, to tell you that you're a total screw-up. I bet you can't wait to get out into the real world because you're all going to be rich. Companies are going to pay you a ton of money to sit there like lumps and do nothing all day. I want all my books back. Just leave them right here on my desk on your way out because, well, unlike a mind, a book is a terrible thing to waste.

Kevin Riley: Think before you speak, Harvey.
Marla Hendricks: Then he'd be mute.

Harvey Lipschultz: [to the football players] When I was a young boy, there was this baseball player. And the players didn't want him to play because he was different. But when he finally did make it into the game, they found that he could hit and run and catch better than all of them. His name was Jackie Robinson. And he paved the way for the black man to get into the game of baseball, making it a better game. What if it were to turn out that this homosexual could run faster, hit harder and throw that football straighter? We won't know that. We won't know that unless that first team of courage invites him to join the game. And I would like to think that that team of courage lives right here at Winslow High. Gentlemen, there is nothing more American than football. Be proud. Welcome the gay linebacker into your shower.

Marla Hendricks: [to the school board] Let me tell you something, let me tell all of you something. The reason I've had it is because I have to go into a room day after day after damn day and try to break through to a bunch of damn kids who don't want to listen, don't want to learn, and don't want to give me the decency of being quiet. Mr. Senate shot off a gun? I woulda rolled in a big cannon if I knew where to get one. I'd have tried anything. And you show me a teacher who doesn't almost lose his or her mind sometimes, and I'll show you a teacher who's not trying. I can show you some parents who aren't. You send them off to school thinking: job's done. It's up to the teachers now. Well, it doesn't work that way. You got to get in on this, too. Kids coming in every day singing that jingle: those who can't do, teach. They get that from their parents! Well, let me tell you, we're in there doing every damn day, and a lot of the doing we do is parenting! You want to compare failures? Step right up! Who's first?

Chapter Four [1.4][edit]

Kevin Riley: [discussing Louisa Fenn's inviting Buttle out on a date] But do you want to go out with her?
Milton Buttle: She's female. She's breathing. I'm going through a non-picky phase.

Juan Figgis: These history books don't talk about Puerto Rico. Why is that?
Harry Senate: Cause we have you to talk about it.

Chapter Five [1.5][edit]

Lauren Davis: [on counseling freshmen on birth control] I started preaching abstinence. I'm telling you I felt the habit growing on my head as the words left my mouth.

Marla Hendricks: I have four cheeks, Harry. Pick one and bite it.

Marla Hendricks: Are you gonna say grace?
Harry Senate: Yep. I'm going to thank God that I'm not you.

Chapter Six [1.6][edit]

Harry Senate: Lauren, you and I are a disaster.
Lauren Davis: I know.
Harry Senate: As disasters go, it'd probably be one of the better ones.
[They kiss.]
Harry Senate: I mean, it's really not a good idea.
Lauren Davis: I know.
[They kiss again.]

Chapter Seven [1.7][edit]

Harry Senate: You know, I doubt this is the first time that one teacher has kissed another.
student: No, it's just... You know, with you...
other student: You're usually kissing students.

Harry Senate: Anyone I suppose could contribute to a shelter or help the needy, but it takes a true American to dedicate himself to firearms. And you know what? We need people like you. Our country's getting a bad rep just because we kill each other. Well, that's manly... shooting people. United States, this is were men live. Australia — all their stupid bragging about how tough they are in the outback. They get about... 15 gun homicides a year. What the hell is that? We get ten thousand. The Japanese are even more pathetic. In 1999, for kids between 15 and 19, they didn't have one handgun murder, not one! We had over five thousand! Our teenagers are tough, but it can't happen unless we get the guns out there into their hands. And for that we need committed, good people like all of you. Look at these idiots in Washington who think it's wrong for teenagers to have assault rifles. And the stupid Democrats think we should have ten-day waiting periods. What happens if you need to kill somebody today? Next thing the government will try to crack down on incest and we won't be able to breed future NRA members. I mean, we are talking about the toothless illiterates that make this country great. This is America. Get a gun!

Chapter Eight [1.8][edit]

Steven: Last day of school before vacation. What's the word for it?
Scott: Halleluia.

Lisa: Is this just about sex with you?
Milton: Honestly, no. I can see you as a potential ex-wife.

Milton: Kevin, you know me. I'm not an impulsive person. I pencil in trips to the bathroom on my day planner.

Marla: Harvey, are you all right?
Harvey: Ooh, I think I'm gonna die. I feel so warm and fuzzy. What can do that to a person besides death?

Lisa: I don't go to Harvard University. I go to Winslow High. I'm a senior.

Chapter Nine [1.9][edit]

Lauren Davis: I wanna go dancing. Women have sex with men to go dancing.
Harry Senate: Men go dancing with women to have sex and we've already done that. So why do we need to go dancing?

Scott Guber: Mr. Senate, your class started ten minutes ago.
Harry Senate: Excellent. Usually they wait 'til I get here.

Scott Guber: Mr. Senate, is there anything you do not find humoring?
Harry Senate: Your tie?

Steven Harper: Why are you here?
Harvey Lipschultz: Because vice-president "Hitler" has ordered me to stay here.

Chapter Ten [1.10][edit]

Steven: It doesn't offend you when he says it's his job to get your black ass into college?
Student: Not really.
Steven: Why not?
Student: Because he will. That man will get my black ass into college.

Marla: (about Harvey) Is he a nut? A big one. A racist? Probably. But he doesn't come from hate and the kids know that.
Steven: Well, a lot of bigotry here does come from hate, Marla, and his behavior helps foster it, even if it's unintentional. There's no such thing as a benign bigot.

Harvey: I know I'm old-fashioned, but am I a racist?
Marla: Yes, Harvey, you are an old-fashioned racist.

Mr. Pierce: I don't know whether to hire a lawyer to sue you or leap across that desk and break your neck.
Mr. Lick: You'd have more success with a lawyer.

Chapter Eleven [1.11][edit]

Jamaal: You know, Mr. Senate? I'm gonna tell you this because I feel like we have a relationship and we can be honest and stuff.
Harry: Okay.
Jamaal: You really shouldn't try to tell jokes. You're not funny.
Harry: All right.

Steven: Did you talk to Tina?
Scott: No, I thought I should perhaps bring you in on it since they think of me as a conservative fascist prude.

Harvey: Don't sell yourself short, Marla. You've got a lot to offer. If I were 40 years younger myself... and blind.
Marla: Oh, if that's not the pot calling the kettle black.
Harvey: Why do you have to make everything about race?

Harry (to Lauren): You do realize you'll officially be a grown-up.
Lauren: Yes. I plan to eventually drag you into adult-hood too.

Joey: (to Lauren) You know, I suddenly remember why I left you. I was always afraid that one day you'd fall off that soapbox of yours and land on me.

Chapter Twelve [1.12][edit]

Christine: I don't want to wrestle!
Kevin: Why?
Christine: Look, I enjoyed it at first, but after awhile, rolling around the floor with a 200-pound sweating grunting pig who's trying to physically hurt me? The fun wears off.

Chapter Thirteen [1.13][edit]

Harry (to Lauren): It's just not like you to clam up.
Lauren: Well, if you think I'm clam now, wait until we get into bed.

Lauren: Do you really think that it is appropriate to motivate your students with the message that the smart kids get the pretty girls?
Jenna: I never said that.
Lauren: Oh.
Jenna: What I said is, the smart kids get the girls with the good asses.
Lauren: Oh.

Steven: I understand you've had a tragedy with one of your partners and these aren't the happiest of times, but if you think you can intimidate me, not gonna happen.
Ellenor: You project nicely. You don't need to be in my face, but while you're here, look into my eyes. Do I look scared? And by the way, you're not better looking up close.
Susan: All right, enough with the chest thumping.

Marilyn: Marla's circulating a petition.
Kevin: Great. It's nice to know I have the voice of insanity on my side.

Chapter Fourteen [1.14][edit]

Scott: Teaching is my calling, Steven, but it's never been my dream. Dreams are made of sterner stuff.
Steven: That's ambition.
Scott: Up there, that's a dream. And this experience, I think, will only make conspicuous how... how my life is utterly without song, I guess.

Lauren: Steven, have you lost your mind?
Steven: Why does that question keep popping up?

Harvey: Steven.
Steven: What?
Harvey: I resign.
Steven: Why?
Harvey: I'm a fossil.
Harry: You're just figuring that out?
Steven: Harry!

Chapter Fifteen [1.15][edit]

Marilyn: We can win this competition without Tyronn. You guys are awesome. So, we'll get right back into it, and we'll be great, and nobody will get gum disease from bitin' anybody's ass.

Steven: I'm not taking her side.
Tina: Then what are you doing?
Steven: I'm covering my gigantic ass.

Lisa: Don't tell me what to do, Harry.
Harry: It's Mr. Senate to you.
Lisa: No, I think it's Harry.
Harry: You're a student!
Lisa: Which gives me an excuse for all the stuff I pull. What's yours... Harry?

Louisa: (to Scott) Would you like me to make a list of all the people who don't like you?

Chapter Sixteen [1.16][edit]

Marla: I got to bed at night thinking of some prince who's gonna swoop in and take me to some exotic island and lick champagne off my naked self. It's my romanticized version, I guess, of wonder and magic. In the real world, my prince, my magic, it's you kids. And some days, when I see your faces go dead, all the wonder just drains out of me. That's all that was happening. I'm better now.

Harvey: It's Harry.
Lauren: Harvey!
Harvey: You two are at odds.
Lauren: We are not at odds.
Harvey: Call me crazy then.
Lauren: Well, gee, I'd be the first to do that, wouldn't I?
Harvey: That was hurtful.

Chapter Seventeen [1.17][edit]

Scott Guber: You're suspended, Mr. Connelly.
Student: Look, please! If I get suspended, my parents will kill me.
Scott Guber: Then perhaps this is Goodbye as well. Retrieve your books. Be gone in one hour.

Scott: Do I look like I'm stupid, Ms. Holt?
Sheryl: Mr. Guber, if you keep asking those rhetorical questions, one day, somebody will respond, and the answer won't please you.

Harvey: The only reason people study Shakespeare is so they know Shakespeare, so they can walk around pretending that they're smarter then everybody else. It's arrogant. You want to be arrogant snobs, move to England, they love Shakespeare there. It's a nation full of arrogant sex-depraved perverts.

Lauren: You okay?
Harry: Oh, well, between us splitting up and me not owning a computer, I don't get to see you naked anymore.

Steven: I can't do it. I got a mother wantin' me to fumigate buses. I got one teacher keepin' secrets that should get him fired, and another teacher who's an old senile bigot who definitely should be fired. I got a student teaching a course for which I'm going to get my ass dragged in front of the school committee, and another teacher appearing naked on a student web site. And I hear you're walkin' around suspending everybody in your path. Is that true?
Scott: It is. It's been a good day.

Chapter Eighteen [1.18][edit]

Harry: Can we discuss your hair?
Patron: Hey, I'm not ashamed to be bald for your information. I just wear a disguise when I come to these places.
Harry: Excellent. I bet in real life your teeth are straight too.

Scott: What did you call me?
Darren: I called you a lot of things, but I finished up with "autocratic hack."

Chapter Nineteen [1.19][edit]

Daniel: (to Lauren) Do you ever fantasize about your students fantasizing about you?

Scott: Mr. Senate, I need a favor.
Harry: Is it sexual?
Scott: Why must you be depraved at every turn, Mr. Senate?
Harry: It's in my character.

Chapter Twenty [1.20][edit]

Scott: (to Kevin Jackson) What does it say about how you think of yourself if you were to conclude the only reason I want you on the team is because of the color of your skin? Is that how you view yourself, Mr. Jackson? Are you going to assume the role of black victim every opportunity that comes your way? Every gain, every loss, will simply be the by-product of your ethnicity? Why don't you hustle off to your favorite tattoo parlor and have "woe" stamped onto your forehead. Let me tell you, Mr. Jackson, I have no use for victims on my team, no matter what they come in. You have a talent. It's that talent I'm trying to avail myself of. Forgive me for trying to recognize it in the face of your dogged determination not to.

Marla: I know teachers are not supposed to have fun, but it is not against the law for us to smile every so often.

Louisa: (about Steven Harper) He's in love.
Marilyn: Really?
Louisa: Marie Ronning's mother. She came in to complain about her daughter sniffing bus fumes, now she's sniffing him.

Chapter Twenty-One [1.21][edit]

Scott (to Harvey): Did you bury me?
Harvey: Why would I do that, Scott?
Scott: You buried me.
Harvey: Scott, I don't get many chances to get you the hell out of Winslow High. I didn't waste the opportunity.

Chapter Twenty-Two [1.22][edit]

Kevin: (reciting his graduation speech) The truth is, I don't have any big message. I don't even have any dreams. A lot of my classmates, the same thing, no dreams. I think one reason for that, the idea of becoming adults, it isn't something we look forward to. We look around, we see our parents, our coaches, our teachers.... Who'd want to be them? Our parents mainly think about money, our coaches mainly think about winning, and our teachers... most of you look half-dead every day. Don't get me wrong, I admire anybody who can go to a place day after day after day tryin' to teach a bunch of us. But a lot of you are disillusioned, you don't get enough respect. Your days are too long, your checks are too small, and you get a little more dead with each passing day. And we see that, making us just a little more afraid day by day. Afraid of the future. And we got no dreams. The truth is, today's kids are disadvantaged. We didn't get to grow up with any Martin Luther Kings or Bobby Kennedys. They didn't make any Jackie Robinsons in our generation. Today's heroes, they're not presidents. Proud parents today say any kid might grow up to be Alan Greenspan. And we got no dreams. Despite all this, I'm standing up here to say there are heroes among us. Sometimes they're parents, sometimes they're classmates, like Christine Banks or Lisa Grier. Sometimes they're teachers. With me, Harvey Lipschultz. He's a bigot, but he never let me forget every day that I could be something. He took an interest in me. And Mr. Senate? He doesn't know it but he saved my life. There's been a few times I thought about just driving over that center line, but then he started the suicide club and I was too proud to join it. But just knowin' that there were other kids out there struggling with some of the same stuff I was... it helped me get by. Mr. Harper, who's here fightin' for us every day, with eyes that never go dead. When I look at him, I want to be a principal. I guess my big message for today is, heroes are in the grass sometimes. They're not always on billboards and magazine covers. You've gotta look for 'em, even when they stand right in front of you. So, do that. Let's live our lives tryin' to do that. Spot 'em, point 'em out to your kids. Maybe there's dreams out there too. And now, I'll ask all of you to applaud because I'm finished.

Isaac: I admit I was wrong.
Scott: In home-schooling your son?
Isaac: In thinking you couldn't possibly become a bigger ass. It seems I've never been more mistaken.
Scott: Your son does not attend Winslow High. Accordingly, he may not participate in Friday's commencement proceedings.
Isaac: I'll try not leave a footprint as I go over your head. I know how you are about your hair.

Season 2[edit]

Chapter Twenty-Three [2.1][edit]

Chapter Twenty-Four [2.2][edit]

Scott Guber: Do you know who Dimitri Schostakovich is?
Steven Harper: Scott, I've told you. I like Basketball. I don't really follow Hockey.
Danny Hanson: You're sick? Huh? You don't look sick to me.
Debbie: So? You don't look nuts, but we both know better.

Chapter Twenty-Five [2.3][edit]

Chapter Twenty-Six [2.4][edit]

Chapter Twenty-Seven [2.5][edit]

Chapter Twenty-Eight [2.6][edit]

Chapter Twenty-Nine [2.7][edit]

Chapter Thirty [2.8][edit]

Chapter Thirty-One [2.9][edit]

Chapter Thirty-Two [2.10][edit]

Chapter Thirty-Three [2.11][edit]

Chapter Thirty-Four [2.12][edit]

Chapter Thirty-Five [2.13][edit]

Chapter Thirty-Six [2.14][edit]

Chapter Thirty-Seven [2.15][edit]

Chapter Thirty-Eight [2.16][edit]

Chapter Thirty-Nine [2.17][edit]

Chapter Forty [2.18][edit]

Marla Hendricks: Harvey, Helen is dead. And as for your reputation... it's in worse shape than Helen.

Chapter Forty-One [2.19][edit]

Chapter Forty-Two [2.20][edit]

Chapter Forty-Three [2.21][edit]

Chapter Forty-Four [2.22][edit]

Season 3[edit]

Chapter Forty-Five [3.1][edit]

Chapter Forty-Six [3.2][edit]

Chapter Forty-Seven [3.3][edit]

Danny Hanson: Not for nothing, but Title 9 says we can hit them now.

Chapter Forty-Eight [3.4][edit]

Chapter Forty-Nine [3.5][edit]

Mr. Johnson: You wanna know why I got no money? [plays a piano solo] I get music, and I get how seductive it can be. It's like your guts are telling you "This is what I was meant to do." It's almost spiritual. What could be better then that?

Chapter Fifty [3.6][edit]

Chapter Fifty-One [3.7][edit]

Chapter Fifty-Two [3.8][edit]

Chapter Fifty-Three [3.9][edit]

Chapter Fifty-Four [3.10][edit]

Chapter Fifty-Five [3.11][edit]

Chapter Fifty-Six [3.12][edit]

Chapter Fifty-Seven [3.13][edit]

Kimberly Woods: [on the phone with Ronnie] Sheila broke into my apartment.
Ronnie Cooke: You're sure someone was in your apartment?
[Kimberly looks at obscene graffiti on the wall.]
Kimberly Woods: Yes, I'm sure.

Chapter Fifty-Eight [3.14][edit]

Chapter Fifty-Nine [3.15][edit]

Chapter Sixty [3.16][edit]

Chapter Sixty-One [3.17][edit]

Chapter Sixty-Two [3.18][edit]

Scott Guber: The little man has been spotted on school grounds. I've got out an all-points bulletin.
Steven Harper: How'd he get past security?
Scott Guber: Went right under them!

Chapter Sixty-Three [3.19][edit]

Chapter Sixty-Four [3.20][edit]

Chapter Sixty-Five [3.21][edit]

Chapter Sixty-Six [3.22][edit]

Season 4[edit]

Chapter Sixty-Seven [4.1][edit]

Chapter Sixty-Eight [4.2][edit]

Chapter Sixty-Nine [4.3][edit]

Harvey Lipschultz: I should have asked him to bless me.
Danny Hanson: You're Jewish, Harvey. You don't believe in Christ.
Harvey Lipschultz: I've been wrong before! Why not hedge my bets?

Marla Hendricks: Just because a white boy can sing doesn’t make him Jesus.

Ronnie Cooke: [referring to Mike]] I need to get his parents in here tomorrow first thing.
Mike: My father is God and my mother is the Virgin Mary. I don’t think they are available.

Chapter Seventy [4.4][edit]

Chapter Seventy-One [4.5][edit]

Chapter Seventy-Two [4.6][edit]

Chapter Seventy-Three [4.7][edit]

Chapter Seventy-Four [4.8][edit]

Chapter Seventy-Five [4.9][edit]

Chapter Seventy-Six [4.10][edit]

Chapter Seventy-Seven [4.11][edit]

Chapter Seventy-Eight [4.12][edit]

Chapter Seventy-Nine [4.13][edit]

Chapter Eighty [4.14][edit]

Chapter Eighty-One [4.15][edit]

Henry (after being caught hugging a female student): What's the big deal? The kid was crying. Some boy named Tristan or Clayton or whatever, he blew her off and dumped her.
Steven: And you felt the appropriate response was to put your arms around her?
Henry: Yeah.
Ronnie: You do realize how this could look, don't you?
Henry: What, that I hugged a girl who was crying? I'm a nice guy?
Ronnie: You had your arms around a 17-year-old girl, the door was closed, and she was wearing a mini-skirt.
Henry: Well, I didn't pick out her clothes this morning.


External links[edit]

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