Recap: Gravity Falls S 1 E 13 Boss Mabel

Mabel's in charge. God Help Us All...

Despite her buoyant and energetic optimism, can Mabel handle the pressure when Grunkle Stan challenges her to run the Shack for three days?

This Gravity Falls episode provides examples of:

  • An Aesop: You can't be a good boss without knowing when to be aggressive and tough (like Stan), but it doesn't hurt to be nice and polite at other times (like Mabel.)
  • Animal-Eared Headband: Dipper wears one as part of his Wolf Boy costume.
  • Awesome but Impractical: Questiony, the question mark, Soos's mascot's idea. The costume was very revealing and left him Exposed to the Elements. And no one suggested just a unitard underneath it in a contrasting color.
  • Benevolent Boss: Mabel starts as this until she snaps at Wendy's idleness and Soos's mediocrity at just 7 hours from the time limit.
  • The Bet: Stan and Mabel make a wager:
    • If Mabel earns more money running the Shack than Stan can in three days while on vacation, he'll let her be boss for the rest of the summer and sing an "apology song" that Mabel wrote.
    • If Stan returns from his three days vacation with more money than Mabel could earn, Mabel will have to wear a "Loser" t-shirt all summer.
    • After Mabel begins acting aggressive like Stan and Dipper using underhanded tactics, they got a net worth of $1 (having to deduct the damages done by the Gremloblin). However, Stan lost all the money he made in a 'double or nothing' segment on Cash Wheel. The word he failed to guess was please, the word he mocked that wouldn't earn money. Mabel and everyone else agree that Mabel will not run the Shack as she realizes the responsibility. Nevertheless, he still does the apology dance. Funnier still, he has to repeat it until he gets it right, taking at least 31 tries.
  • Break the Cutie: Mabel just does not get a break in this episode until she starts becoming Stan.
  • Brick Joke / Chekhov's Gun: "Please."
  • Comically Missing the Point: Mabel did not quite get Stan's joke about the complaint department.
  • The Chains of Commanding: Mabel learned in the hard way how tough is being the boss.
    • The cryptogram in the stinger even translates into "HEAVY IS THE HEAD THAT WEARS THE FEZ."
  • Eye Color Change: When people look into the Gremloblin's eyes, their eyes change to a bright yellow to match his.
  • Fatal Flaw: Stan mocked the idea of using the word "please" for anything, and that he'd never be able to get money using the word. His greed, and not knowing that word is why he lost the bet he so smugly made with Mabel.
  • Game Show Appearance: Grunkle Stan tries to win the bet by making an appearance on Cash Wheel.
  • Generation Xerox:
    • Mabel at the end got to start to be as demanding as Stan (and ended saying the same things as he and getting a backache) to get the Mystery Shack repaired at time.
    • Dipper got to dress as Stan and learn to be a Con Artist to get the tourists' money.
    • The Gremloblin's worst fear is apparently becoming like his father.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar:
    Stan: If you throw money at him, he dances.
  • A Glass in the Hand: Mabel snaps her troll-pen when she finally loses her temper with Wendy and Soos.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: The Gremloblin's eyes glow yellow when people look into them and see their worst nightmare.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Dipper defeated the Gremloblin using a mirror to make him project its own worst nightmare.
  • I Am Not My Father: The gremloblin's worst nightmare is that he becomes his father.
  • Ironic Echo: Stan can't see how knowing to say "please" will give you money. It turns out that was the winning word in the "double or nothing" segment on Cash Wheel and he ended losing everything.
  • Jerkass: Stan takes his jerkassery Up to Eleven in this episode. Heck, it's the reason he ended up on the game show in the first place.
    • Also Mabel has to become this in order to make any kind of profit.
    • Wendy Took a Level in Jerkass as well when she used Mabel's fear of being like Stan to have a paid day off, and Mabel just asked her politely to do her job.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: As Stan proceeds to get naked after managing to spin a "Cash Shower", the "Cash Wheel" host desperately runs to block out the camera's view while yelling to cut to commercial. While we don't do that, we do cut to the next scene.
    • Also, Stan's line "it's good to be back" was used in the trailer for the first episode after a long hiatus.
  • Mind Rape: Looking into the eyes of the Gremlobin will show you your greatest fear.
  • Naked People Are Funny: Grunkle Stan stripping down for his Cash Shower.
  • No Longer with Us: Soos makes this misunderstanding when he finds Mabel in Stan's office.
    Mabel: Stan is no longer with us...
    Soos: He's dead?! Oh, it should have been me!
  • No, You: After Stan and Mabel make their bet.
    Stan: You got yourself a deal, missy!
    Mabel: No, you got yourself a deal!
  • Purely Aesthetic Glasses: Mabel sports a really dorky pair when she first becomes boss.
  • Raised by Wolves: A wolf family has apparently invited Soos to join them.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: Dipper shows a pair of tourists the Gremgoblin. They think it's fake.
  • Sarcasm-Blind: Mabel, when Grunkle Stan says to "tell it to the complaints department" and then holds up a trash can.
    Mabel: I'm going to write them such a letter.
  • Taking Advantage of Generosity: Mabel offered Wendy a hand to improve her working situation, Wendy took the whole arm; even after seeing the shack ruined, she was about to flee out of work until Monday with the excuse of a headache instead of helping until Mabel snapped and turned all Stan on her butt.
  • The World Is Not Ready: When Dipper captured a real monster to show in the shack, tourists didn't buy it over the fake attractions; Dipper proves them wrong by letting the monster Mind Rape them, and they end up hospitalized.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: Played with when we briefly see the tourists from Stan's point of view. They're all walking, talking wallets, and one of them vomits coins.
  • What Have I Become?:
  • Who Writes This Crap?!: “When fighting a Gremloblin, use water... [turns page] ...only as a last resort, because water will make it much more scarier! AH! Who writes sentences like that?"
  • You Did What You Had To Do: Dipper tells Mabel this after her What Have I Become? moment.
  • You! Exclamation: Mabel confronts Grunkle Stan with one of these when she gets tired of his shabby treatment of his employees.