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The Recess Gang deciding to use the fortune telling device; right before Butch sees them.

"Gus' Fortune" is the fifth episode of the fourth season of Recess, which was first broadcast on September 19th, 1999.



After reading a fortune-telling device that found its way to Third Street, Gus is told to "eat, drink, and be merry for tomorrow is your final day".

Main Story

After witnessing Gelman terrorize another kid for his lunch money, Gus tells the gang that he wants to put an end to his terror by building a trap he calls the 'Gelimanator 6000'. Although the others see this as a device that could work, Gus notes that he would not have the courage to use this. At that moment, a fortune-telling device lands in the playground. The others are eager to use it but are warned by Butch about the consequences of using a fortune-teller they have not made. Spinelli ignores Butch's warning and uses the device; it tells her to expect “great riches." She persuades the others to give the fortune teller a try. T.J. takes it and the device predicts that he will pass a test "with flying colors". Gretchen takes it next and is told that she will go on a trip. Gus then takes it and is told that the next day will be his last. The others reassure Gus telling him that they believe any of the fortunes coming true is unlikely.

Some of the fortunes, however, seem to come true: T.J. gets 101% in a test, Spinelli finds a $50 bill on the bottom of her boot, and an annoyed Principal Prickly gives Gretchen a telegram that was sent to his office which confirmed that she was to go on a trip to the Galápagos Islands for scientific study. This worries Gus and he begins to take precautions by dressing up in protective clothing and refusing to eat his food in case it is poisoned. Gus even begins worrying over small things such as paper cuts, worried that he would bleed to death. He then realizes he should calm down and accepts his destiny. He gives his friends a list of his possessions that they can have when he dies.

Stinky Peterson choosing the wrong fortune.

Gus seeks advice from the Guru Kid who tells him to fill his remaining time by achieving something great. Gus walks away wondering what he could do before noticing Gelman bullying a younger kid and soon realizing that he should build his trap.

The rest of the gang find him the next day building the 'Gelmanator 6000'; he misses class to keep building it. During which, Miss Grotke informs T.J. that a mistake was made when his test was marked and he actually got 10.1% (though he notes that is better than his usual grade). Spinelli then finds out that the fifty-dollar bill she found actually belongs to Ashley A., who can prove it because she knows its serial number, and has to give it back to her. Gretchen finds out from Principal Prickly through another telegram that she will not be going to the Galápagos Islands due to the fact that she is too young and legally cannot consent. The gang realizes that none of their fortunes actually came true, hence Gus' probably would not either. At recess, they try and tell Gus not to deploy his trap but they are too late. Gus sees Gelman and lures him into his trap, however, at the last moment Miss Finster comes between them, accidentally triggering the trap and getting caught in the process. Gelman is traumatized by the fact he was nearly caught in the trap and runs off while Finster demands to be freed.

The gang destroy the fortune teller and tell Gus that they are glad it was not his last day, however, Gus mentions that it is his last day--of going home on time, since he got detention from Miss Finster that will last until he is in the sixth grade. Meanwhile, Gelman is shown shaken that he stops bullying people and his previous victims now scare him.


  • Before "The Girl Was Trouble", because Principal Prickly mentions that Gretchen is only nine years old.


  • Animation/continuity/consistency error: During the opening scene, the letters that form the name of the ship vary in size and positioning while the scene is zooming in.
  • Animation/continuity/consistency error: While Gus exclaims that Gelman makes him mad, his watch is drawn sideways. This is visible right before Gus shows the blueprint.



  • Here are the following revealed fortunes in this episode.
    • 1. You will take a trip to an exotic land.
      4. You will pass your greatest test with flying colors.
      5. Eat drink and be merry, for tomorrow is your final day.
      7. Great riches will soon be yours.
  • According to this episode, T.J. is supposedly failing in class. When Miss Grotke gives him his test back with a 10.1% score (out of 100%), he mentions that it is one of his better grades, hinting that he does even worse. Vince also says to everyone that it is impossible for T.J. to ace a test.
  • Mikey and Vince never got their turn with the fortune teller.
  • The fortune teller came from a boat called 'Strange Destiny'.
  • The serial number on the fifty-dollar bill Spinelli finds is [[1]].
  • Moral: Be careful about what you wish or dream for because the grass is not always greener where you think it is; that does not mean that you should not have any dreams and passions at all.


  • This is the second episode where Stinky Peterson was mentioned; the first being "My Fair Gretchen".
  • This is the second episode where "Eat the Camera" happens during one of the scenes (even though it is downplayed, meaning that the camera does not zoom into the throat this time); the first being "Mama's Girl", and the last being "The Biggest Trouble Ever".
    • This is also the only episode where a guy does "Eat the Camera".

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