Food, Lies and Videotape is the seventeenth episode of the third season in this television sitcom on Family Matters, which was aired from ABC on February 7, 1992. It was directed by John Tracy and written by Stephen Langford.
Urkel enrolls in a home economics course (just because Laura is in the same class), but he soon learns that he's simply not cut out to be a cook. However, Waldo discovers he might just have a hidden culinary talent. Meanwhile, Richie accidentally breaks Carl's video camera.
Steve, Laura and Waldo are three of the students that have enrolled in the Home Economics classroom. The teacher in the classroom, Miss Steuben, freaks out upon seeing Urkel because she had been his teacher in another class and he had promised her that he would not enroll into a class she taught in. Meanwhile, Carl has purchased a camcorder for him to record his family. Richie gets his hand on it and with Judy, they catch Eddie kissing his girlfriend, Vonda, in the living room, when he's supposed to study. When they are caught, he asks the two about what they're doing. Richie intends to send the tape to America's Yuckiest Home Videos. Humiliated, Vonda leaves Eddie as he tries to chase after her. Soon Richie accidentally breaks the camera. The first assignment is to bake a loaf of bread. Laura learns from the teacher that she has to time things and set the oven at the right temperature. Waldo surprises the teacher with a baked Turkey and she asked him about the loaf of bread she assigned him to do. He then uncovers it and since he was done, he decided to make the turkey. She is so amazed at how good a cook he is. Over the next few days the teacher even has Waldo cater a special party at her house. Urkel is so upset at how he did not do well he tries the next day to make up by introducing a new invention of his called Urk-Yeast and when he tries to bake a loaf of bread the oven blows open with all the bread dough pouring out of the oven and making a big mess all over the floor. Cassie Lynn refuses to accept that she can't rely on her looks and be a cover girl all the time. Miss Steuben notices this attitude and admonishes her for not trying at all. Steuban tells her off that if she wants a passing grade in Home Ec., Cassie Lynn must learn to cook like everyone else by getting her hands dirty. She proves her point by taking off Cassie Lynn's gloves and putting an uncooked dough in her hands, much to the latter's disgust. Miss Steuban mentions that if she keeps her current behavior, she will flunk Cassie Lynn. With Rachel's help, Richie confesses to the whole thing. Though he is pleased that Richie has confessed, Carl must also deal with Eddie's studying skills (or lack thereof) after he watches a recording of him kissing his girlfriend, Vonda. Urkel comes in the messy classroom and apologizes to Miss Steuban for stressing her out. He informs her that the janitor isn't coming to clean the classroom and opted for early retirement due to his awareness of the nerd's clumsiness and his inventions going haywire. When Miss Steuben claims she deserves an F and plans to quit teaching, Steve snaps her out of it. He points out it was because of her that he, Laura and Waldo learned valuable life lessons. Urkel admits to Miss Steuben that whilst he accepted that he's not cut out to be a chef and cook meals, it also didn't stop him from trying new things. Laura learned how to properly make her meals and not rush through them like she's in a hurry. Waldo learned he has an ability as a chef and not only he has honed in on it, he also has respect for himself and others through Miss Steuben. This brings some comfort to her knowing that Steve and a few of her class members have learned life lessons from her.
- Reginald VelJohnson as Carl Winslow
- Jo Marie Payton as Harriette Winslow
- Rosetta LeNoire as Estelle Winslow
- Darius McCrary as Eddie Winslow
- Kellie Shanygne Williams as Laura Winslow
- Jaimee Foxworth as Judy Winslow
- Bryton James as Richie Crawford (credited as Bryton McClure)
- Jaleel White as Steve Urkel
- Telma Hopkins as Rachel Crawford
- Shawn Harrison as Waldo Geraldo Faldo
- Danielle Nicolet as Vonda Mahoney
- Kim Valentine as Cassie Lynn
- Susan Krebs as Ms. Steuben
- In perhaps one of the longest-running subplots on the series (second only to the romantic triangle between Steve, his alter egos, Laura, and Myra), Waldo starts down the path to becoming a chef. His culinary aspirations would become a recurring subplot, transforming his character from a wannabe thug to a more likeable character with career ambition.
- This is the only time Steve gets a grade that’s lower than an A.
- Urkel: Come on, yeast! Rise! You can do it!
- Ms. Steuben: Steve, it's not a good sign when you have to give your bread a pep talk.
- [On the phone]
- Laura: Steve, I can't talk now. I'm cooking breakfast. No, you're not invited. It's just for the family... Steve... stop begging.
- Carl: This baby has a remote. I'll be in all the videos.
- Estelle "Mother": Then, you'll need a wide-angle lenses.
- [watching the tape recording of Eddie and Vonda kissing.]
- Carl: And we also have to talk to Eddie about his study habits.