Binghamton informs Carpenter that war correspondent Whit Barrett is arriving at Taratupa the next day. He tells his aide to have everyone make sure the base is shipshape, and Carpenter wishes Binghamton luck. When Binghamton wonders what he means, Carpenter points out that everyone Barrett covers gets a promotion shortly thereafter. McHale comes in and already knows that Barrett is coming. Binghamton tells him to keep his crew confined to the island, particularly Parker. McHale says that Parker is picking up Binghamton's jeep… just as Parker drives the jeep into the office.
Binghamton, furious, orders them both out and threatens to transfer Parker out. When Parker says that Barrett has a great sense of humor, Binghamton wonders how he knows and Parker explains that the two of them used to be buddies back in their hometown. The commander immediately cheers up and helps Parker out of the jeep, and McHale reminds him about the transfer. Binghamton claims that he was just fooling around and puts Parker in charge of public relations. McHale suggests that Parker interest Barrett in doing a story about Binghamton, and Binghamton says that it'd be too embarrassing. However, he hastily contradicts Parker when Parker agrees. Parker quickly changes his mind and McHale gets him out.
Back on the island, McHale suggests that they come up with a nickname for Binghamton to increase his chances of getting Barrett's attention. Parker is working on a story and comes up with a nickname: "Jolly Wally" Binghamton. He runs it by Binghamton, who is less than thrilled. Parker manages to convince him that it will sweep the country, as long as Binghamton laughs and smiles and chuckles. Binghamton doesn't do well until Parker suggests that he think of his wife leaving him. Parker then slams a can down on Binghamton's food to see if he can laugh in the face of adversity, and Binghamton tries to keep laughing.
Barrett soon arrives at the base, and Parker and McHale greet him. The correspondent soon remembers "Little Chuckie" and tells them to take him to their leader. Carpenter drives Binghamton up and knocks him out of the jeep. When Barrett come over, Binghamton laughs off his fall and the ruin of his $25 hat. Barrett admits that he's never met anyone quite like Binghamton, just as a Zero attacks. Binghamton continues laughing hysterically and Parker gets Barrett to cover. McHale and Virgil open fire on the Zero while Parker gets Barrett into a building... and locks the door behind him, sealing Binghamton outside. The door is jammed, and Parker reminds Binghamton that he's "Jolly." Binghamton keeps laughing as bombs and bullets hit nearby.
Later, the crew is cleaning up the 73 when Binghamton comes over with Parker and Barrett. Binghamton is still laughing, even when he steps in Happy's bucket and Virgil burns him with a blowtorch. He finally checks himself into the infirmary with second-degree burns and McHale lets Parker take the 73 out to impress Barrett. He forgets to cast off the mooring line, pulling the dock--with Binghamton on it--into the lagoon. Despite the fact he's drowning, Binghamton keeps laughing.
Three weeks later, Parker and McHale burst into Binghamton's office and he reminds them that Barrett hasn't written anything about him. Parker shows him the paper with Binghamton's story, and Binghamton tells him to read it as Carpenter comes in with a dispatch for Binghamton. Binghamton tells him to shut up, and Parker reads how Barrett describes Binghamton and says that sailors shouldn’t be entrusted to a "laughing hyena" like "Jolly Wally." The CO is less than amused, and Carpenter shows him the dispatch about how the Navy is sending a fleet psychiatrist out to determine his fitness for combat command. Binghamton promises to demote Parker and chases him out of the office with a sword. Molly is outside and tells McHale that she saw the dispatch about the psychiatrist's visit. She suggests that Binghamton needs a tranquilizer, and McHale tells her to get a lot of them as he runs off after Binghamton.
Later, Molly brings Binghamton some hot milk and some tranquilizers. He refuses to take any, and Molly secretly puts two in his hot milk before she goes. Carpenter comes in and tells Binghamton that the psychiatrist's plane will be landing in 30 minutes. Binghamton yells at him to get out, and Carpenter sees the tray and puts two more tranquilizers in the milk. After he goes, Binghamton comes out and takes two tranquilizers with the milk... and immediately passes out.
McHale and Parker come to see Binghamton to tell him that Parker has radioed Barr to suggest he issue a retraction. They find Binghamton unconscious and get him onto the couch, and try to wake him up. When that doesn't work, they get him dressed and feed him some black coffee. The psychiatrist, Captain Saunders, knocks at the door. McHale tells Parker to stall Saunders while he gets him into the next room and tries to wake him up.
When Parker lets Saunders in, the psychiatrist sees Parker holding Binghamton's jacket and assumes that Parker is Binghamton. Parker stumbles through the first part of the interview, and McHale overhears and comes out. Binghamton staggers out and McHale shoves him into the next room, and claims he was Binghamton's orderly.
Barrett comes in and hails Parker, and admits that he might have been rough on Binghamton. Saunders demands to know what's going on, and orders McHale to stand away from the door that Binghamton is pounding on. McHale does so and Saunders opens the door just as Binghamton tries to knock it down. He goes flying through the room and out the outer door, ending up in a trash can.
Later, Binghamton calls McHale and Carpenter in and reads them Saunders' report. Saunders passed him with flying colors and McHale tries to give Parker the credit because he convinced Barrett to write a story on Saunders. Binghamton reluctantly admits that Parker has a head on his shoulders… just as Parker crashes through the wall with Binghamton's jeep again. Binghamton comes after Parker, who drives out the opposite wall.
Written by Gadfly on Jan 4, 2017