Recap: Gravity Falls S 1 E 8 Irrational Treasure

The eighth episode of Gravity Falls.

During the celebration of the town's founding, Pacifica gloats over being descended from the founder, and makes fun of Mabel for her silliness. But then Dipper and Mabel discover evidence that the town founder may have been a hoax, so they set out to expose the historical cover-up -unaware that the local cops are under orders from someone to stop them. Meanwhile, Uncle Stan, who hates the town's obsession of reenacting the foundation, gets puts on stocks for misbehaving.

This Gravity Falls episode provides examples of:

  • Absentee Actor: The only episode without Soos.
  • Bait and Switch: Stan's reaction to the wagons (especially in the promo) seems to be implying it's some kind of supernatural occurrence he wants to avoid, digging deeper into the "Stan knows more than he lets on" theory amongst the fandom (particularly on this site). Then we find out it's just a town holiday he dislikes.
  • Beethoven Was an Alien Spy: Ben Franklin was a woman. Thomas Jefferson was two kids in a overcoat standing on each other's shoulders. The current president is Santa Claus.
  • Big Stupid Doodoo Head: Stan insulting Pacifica Northwest by writing down "you stink."
  • Break the Haughty: When Dipper revealed to Pacifica his and Mabel's findings about the history of Gravity Falls.
  • Brick Joke/Continuity Nod: "Ben Franklin really WAS a woman!"
  • But Now I Must Go: Quentin Trembley leaves Gravity Falls because he's "needed elsewhere". Dipper thinks he's just going to fall off a cliff.
  • Caligula's Horse: President Trembley appointed babies to the Supreme Court. In The Stinger he is seen pleading his case to them.
  • Captain Obvious: Durland in the cave passes out with his back covered with darts.
    Bluds: He got hit with quite a few of those darts.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: President Trembley. He waged war on pancakes.
  • Determined Expression: Dipper, while he and Mabel are "breaking into" the museum.
  • Fake Ultimate Hero/Historical Badass Upgrade: Nathaniel Northwest, known as the founder of Gravity Falls, in reality a waste-shoveling village idiot who the government used to hide the existence of its 8th and a 1/2 president and the real founder of Gravity Falls, Quentin Trembley.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: The secret document about Nathaniel Northwest contains all sorts of weird secrets. The one about the Time Baby would be followed up on in the next episode.
  • Government Conspiracy: The government is trying to keep all evidence of history's silliest US president covered up.
  • Heh Heh, You Said X: "Hah! Booby traps."
  • He Knows Too Much: Dipper and Mabel think the cops were going to kill them for finding out about Trembley. They weren't, but still want to take them away to Washington for the rest of their lives (assuming the government wasn't just going to kill them eventually).
  • I'd Tell You, but Then I'd Have to Kill You: Subverted. The narrator of the government film says that President Trembley's term is so top secret that he is to be killed when the recording complete. The camera crew corrects him, much to his glee.
  • Jerkass: George Washington according to Trembly (see "Noodle Incident" below)
  • Landslide Election: Trembly won a literal one by default.
  • Loophole Abuse: President Trembley never signed his resignation letter and is technically still the President of the United States, which goes somewhere into Insane Troll Logic territory as his term ended more than 150 years ago anyway. Of course, it's not likely the dim-witted Blubs and Durland would realize that.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: The twins "breaking into" the museum.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Mabel's wrappers are what allows Blubs and Durland to track down the twins and Trembley's hiding spot.
  • Noodle Incident: At some point in his life Trembley was chased around by George Washington, who then spanked him with a paddle for three hours straight. We don't know why though, only that Washington was "a jerk".
  • Police Are Useless: Zig-zagged; Blubs and Durland make a tremendous number of incompetent mistakes, but still manage to capture Mabel and Dipper anyway.
  • Pre-emptive Declaration: Gideon does this twice when he's "dropping" tomatoes on Stan.
  • Selective Enforcement: Officer Blubs and Deputy Durland ignore a snatcher stealing an old lady's purse, but quickly react to Stan who causes a minor scuffle.
  • Skeleton Key: The President's Key can open any lock in America.
  • Skyward Scream: "PIONEER DAY!!!"
  • Stock Punishment: Stan spends most of the episode in the stocks.
  • Un-Person: Apparently, the US government was so ashamed of their real 9th president (who also founded Gravity Falls) that they completely erased him from history, officially calling William Henry Harrison 9th. This makes President Trembley 8th 1/2th.
    • Fridge Brilliance: In Real Life, William Henry Harrison died in 30 days. Of course, that's what a conspiracy that made him up would say to explain why they can't find evidence of anything significant that he actually did.
  • Wham Line: "This is Sheriff Blubs, we've got a Code Sepia!"
  • Zillion-Dollar Bill: Quentin Trembley gives Dipper the "less than worthless" $-12 bill.