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"Mork Goes Erk"
Season 1, Episode #18
(#18) in series (95 episodes)
Mork and Mindy 1x18 - Mork Goes Erk
Susan gets everyone to join ERK (a self-help program called Ellsworth Revitalization Konditioning) where they meet its tyrannical con artist of a motivational speaker, Ellsworth (David Letterman) in "Mork Goes ERK" in Season 1 (episode #18).
"Mork & Mindy" episode
Guest Star(s): David Letterman
Network: ABC-TV
Production code: 118 (1-18)
Writer(s) Lloyd Turner & Gordon Mitchell
Director Howard Storm
Original airdate February 8, 1979
IMDB IMDb logo Mork Goes Erk
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Mork Goes Erk was the 18th episode of Season 1 of Mork and Mindy, and also the 18th overall episode in the series. Co-written by Lloyd Turner and Gordon Mitchell, the episode, which was directed by Howard Storm, made its world premiere airing on ABC-TV on February 8, 1979.


Mork reveals that Orson has reassigned him to another planet. Meanwhile, Susan Taylor returns and is trying to get everyone to join ERK (a self-help program called Ellsworth Revitalization Konditioning).

Plot summaryEdit

After Mork receives the depressing news that he may be transferred, Susan Taylor gets him, Mindy, and Mr. Bickley to attend a seminar of ERK (short for Ellsworth Revitalization Konditioning), and the tyrannical Ellsworth meets his match in his alien patient.

Quotes/Scene excerptsEdit

  • Susan: ERK teaches you how to love yourself.
  • Mindy: I'll bet you got an "A".
  • Susan: A+!

  • Mindy: Mork, you've been acting awfully strange lately. I mean, more strange than usual.
  • Mork: Oh, you've noticed.
  • Mindy: Noticed! How could I help it? Like, yesterday you spent all day walking and talking backwards.
  • Mork: Well, that's all behind me now!


  • Mindy: Mork, why are you doing all these strange things?
  • Mork: To cheer you up.
  • Mindy: But I'm not sad.
  • Mork: Well, you will be after you hear the news that I have to tell you.
  • Mindy: What news?
  • Mork: That I've got orders from Orson. I've been transferred to another planet and I'll never ever see you again.
  • Mindy: (sitting down, in shock) What?
  • Mork: (bravely) Well. You've got to look at the good side. You're not losing an alien, you'll... you're gaining an empty room!

  • Susan: (to Mork, Mindy, and Bickley) This is Ellsworth!

(Mork and Mindy stand up to shake hands, but Ellsworth ignores them)

  • Susan: Oh, Ellsworth, you know, we're so lucky to have a man like you, so unselfish - it's a special gift for...
  • Ellsworth: (interrupting her with a huge smile) Yes, excuse me, excuse me. Could you hold that thought just a moment?
  • Susan: (almost swooning toward him) Ohh, yes.

(Ellsworth, with checkbook in hand, starts counting how many people are attending)

  • Ellsworth: 17...18... 19, 20. Twenty bodies, twenty checks! Okay, we're all set!

(He puts his checkbook in his pocket)

  • Ellsworth: Now, what were you saying?
  • Mork: She (Susan) was saying how nice it was that an unselfish man like you came all this way for a little thing like money!

Episode castEdit


Guest starring/Recurring castEdit


  • During the ERK meeting with Ellsworth, Mork raises his hand and mistakenly says, "Point of Ellsworth, order!" (instead of "Point of order, Ellsworth!") The phrase "point of order" is used in parliamentary proceedings when a member asks the leader whether a rule has been broken. In American history, the phrase is associated with Communist-hunter Senator Joseph McCarthy, who frequently used it during what are known as the Army-McCarthy Hearings (1954-1955). (See the documentary film Point of Order! (1964).) Notwithstanding Mork's unlikely knowledge of the phrase (he certainly doesn't know how to use it), the writers of the show use this as a way of of hinting that Ellsworth might be a tiny bit like McCarthy, who in the aftermath of the Hearings has generally been considered a villain. A further part of the joke is that David Letterman is a Democrat, and thus would have been considered a Communist by McCarthy.
  • This episode is one of David Letterman's first TV series appearances.