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Literature / Franklin

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Franklin, his friends, and their two teachers.note 

Hey, it's Franklin!
Coming over to play.
Growing a little
Every day.
Here he comes with all his friends.
They've got stories, got time to spend with you!
Hey, it's Franklin!
Coming to your house.
Hey, it's Franklin!
Coming to my house.
Hey, it's Franklin!
Franklin theme song

Franklin (Franklin the Turtle) is a Canadian series of children's books written by Paulette Bourgeois and illustrated by Brenda Clark, featuring the adventures of an anthropomorphic young turtle and his group of friends. The first book in the series, Franklin in the Dark, was released in 1986 by Kids Can Press and its popularity led to over twenty books in the original series.

In 1997, the Canadian animation studio Nelvana adapted the characters for an animated children's series with the same name that appeared on Nick Jr. and CBS in the United States, Family Channel and Treehouse TV in Canada, and has since been seen around the world. In each story, Franklin explores themes and values of importance to kids, including the first day of school, a first sleepover and the importance of perseverance and being true to one's friends. The animated series is often deemed as among the best shows created by Nelvana, as well as one of the true icons of Canadian television animation.

In 2010, Nelvana announced the production of a new CGI series, Franklin and Friends, ordered for 26 episodes, featuring familiar favorites and a new character, Aunt T. The series was previewed on Treehouse TV on February 14, 2011 and began regular broadcasts in March. In the United States, it began airing in Nickelodeon's morning block on February 13, 2012, nearly a year after it was first seen in Canada. In September 2013 it also premiered in the UK.

Franklin celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2011. There were a total of four films released for the original Franklin series: Franklin and the Green Knight: The Movie, Franklin's Magic Christmas, Back to School with Franklin and Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure. Franklin and Friends has two to date: Polar Explorer and Deep Sea Voyage. Both were made with the participation of the theme park SeaWorld, which also hosts a Franklin attraction at its park in Orlando, Florida.

Two Franklin CD releases are known to be available. The first, Hey, It's Franklin!, was released in 2000 and includes music from the film Franklin and the Green Knight, as well as two different stage shows. The second is called Franklin & the Adventures of the Noble Knights and features the music from a 2010 stage show by that name.

Nelvana has also made every episode of both the original series and Franklin and Friends available on YouTube through both the show's official channel and Treehouse Direct.

The various adaptations of Franklin provide examples of the following:

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    Tropes # to M 
  • 2D Visuals, 3D Effects: The entire series and pretty much all of the movies were done entirely in traditional animation, though with obvious computer assistance in some places. For example, the turtle talisman in Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure was pretty obviously CGed.
  • Acrophobic Bird: Mr. Sparrow in "Franklin in the Dark" is afraid of heights, so sometimes, when nobody is looking, he puts on his parachute.
  • Actually Pretty Funny: In "Franklin and the Mooseratops," Mr. Fox can't help but chuckle at one point at Franklin and Bear's antics as mooseratops (wearing branches on their heads as antlers), even though everyone's getting a bit annoyed with him and neither he nor Mr. Owl really want to encourage them.
  • Adaptation Distillation: The animated episodes contain a reasonable number of liberties from the books, the most egregious example being Franklin in the Dark, in which Franklin’s journey to find someone to help him overcome his fears is retold by Mrs. Turtle about a “Little Turtle” who went through the same predicament as Franklin. This was likely because the duck, the lion, the sparrow and the polar bear were not used again in any of the later books.
  • Adaptational Early Appearance: Mr. Turtle was introduced in Hurry Up, Franklin!, which was the second book in the series. He appears in the animated adaptation of Franklin in the Dark.
  • Adaptation Expansion:
    • When Paulette Bourgeois first wrote Franklin in the Dark, she neglected to mention exactly how and where Franklin got his nightlight from. The Nelvana adaptation rectifies this by having Mr. Turtle, who was absent in the original story, giving Franklin a jar of fireflies, which he places next to his shell.
    • The stage show adaptation of Franklin's Class Trip, "Franklin's Big Adventure," adds the character of Miss Carbunkel the museum guide and a dinosaur that Franklin and Snail sing a song with. (When asked if he eats trees, he replies "Just the leaves— I'm a ve-ge-tar-i-an!") In the book, Franklin and Snail are worried about the possibility of meeting real, scary dinosaurs at the museum, only to learn that dinosaurs are extinct and the museum only has fossils/skeletons.
    • The first season was based almost entirely on material from the original books, but the show then went on to air five seasons of original material, as well as a CGI sequel. The first two movies were also based loosely on elements from the books, the first more so than the second.
  • Adapted Out: Franklin’s friends Hawk and Duck (not the one in Franklin in the Dark) from the earlier books are absent from the cartoon.
  • An Aesop: Most of the stories are based on teaching one of some sort. In-universe, Mrs. Turtle summarizes the aesop of the story The Quest of the Green Knight as being "Sometimes it's not enough just to do the right thing, if you're doing it for the wrong reasons."
  • Anthropomorphic Shift: The earlier books had Franklin’s parents, and some of the other animals like Rabbit and Fox, depicted as quadrupeds. In the later books following 'Franklin Wants a Pet” and the TV series, they became bipedal.
  • Aesop Amnesia: In Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure, Aunt Lucy mentions a "mystic" who lives at Turtle Lake and Mr. Turtle comments "Can't say I believe in hocus pocus myself." Apparently he has forgotten witnessing his son and daughter traveling on the back of a flying reindeer in Franklin's Magic Christmas. Could also be considered a case of Arbitrary Skepticism.
  • All-CGI Cartoon: Franklin and Friends
  • Alliterative Name: Beatrice "Bea" Bear.
  • Always Know a Pilot: "Franklin and Snail's Dream". Snail's dream is to fly, but many different attempts by Franklin prove futile, that is until Mr. Turtle calls on a pilot friend of his, who just happens to also be a snail, and flies around in her own snail-sized plane, to make Snail's dream come true.
  • Always Late: One story establishes that Franklin is "slow, even for a turtle", i.e. he dawdles a lot. Thus, he often shows up late to his friends' activities, to the point where they get bored and leave.
  • Amusing Injuries: In Franklin and the Green Knight, Bear and Goose are excited about the idea of Franklin getting a sibling, but Beaver comments that babies aren't fun all the time. Goose replies that babies aren't that bad. Bear agrees and he and Goose start singing the song "Brothers and Sisters" about their own experience with younger siblings, but Beaver decides to make her point physically..
    Bear: Hey, Franklin, I've got a sister, I hug her when she cries...
    Beaver: Then when she's feeling better, she hits him in the eye!
    Bear: Beaver!
    Goose: Hey, Franklin, I've got a sister, we like to play hide-and-seek...
    Beaver: And if you're not too careful, he bonks you on the beak!
    Goose: Ow! Beaver!
  • Anachronic Order: This is evident in both Franklin and Franklin and Friends. The former did not follow the order of the book series before it overtook it, while the latter shows the origin of the Bumpy Buggy several episodes in.
  • Anatomy Anomaly: Averted in the original Franklin books and TV show when Franklin can't get a visit from the tooth fairy because turtles don't have teeth. Yet oddly, in "Franklin and the Super Sleepover" in Franklin and Friends, Franklin complains about the Beavers taking much longer to brush their teeth than turtles and the Turtle family is clearly indicated to be waiting to use the bathroom to brush their teeth. Furthermore, in "Franklin's Campout," Mr. Turtle tells Franklin that he'll have to brush his teeth after eating a marshmallow snack, so apparently turtles have teeth on Franklin and Friends. And yet, in the third season story "Franklin and the Lost Lost Tooth," Franklin says quite clearly that "Turtles don't have teeth." (Somebody make up their mind!)
  • Animals Not to Scale: The woodland animals are more or less their respective sizes and we have the accurately tiny Snail, but then comes Franklin, a turtle, who is as tall as a beaver and more than half the size of a bear. Moose is another one that is a bit more accurate, and his family is even bigger, though he's only seen in one installment of the television series and a smattering of the books. Then there's Eagle from the Franklin and the Green Knight film, who is massive and able to carry Franklin and Snail for a ride on her back.
  • Animated Adaptation: Like most of Nelvana's shows. Many of the first season stories are based directly on the original books. This was dropped after the first season, though some stories still occasionally incorporated story elements that first appeared in the books. In particular, Franklin and the Green Knight adapted some material from Franklin's Baby Sister, while Franklin's Magic Christmas gives Franklin a line that was used as the ending of the narration of Franklin and Harriet.
  • Animation Bump: There were four movies and each have their own distinctive visual style. Fans vary on which was their favorite. In pure technical terms, however, the final film Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure had the best animation, thanks to a number of former Disney animators being hired on to work on the film. This film also contains a fair amount of Scenery Porn.
  • Anthropomorphic Shift:
    • From the earlier books to the television series. In the earlier books, the animals looked more realistic, right down to their sizes - Bear, Fox, and Otter were much bigger than Franklin. Also, many of the characters (including Franklin's parents) walked on all fours. Starting in Franklin Plays the Game, the seventh book in the series, all of the characters are the same size and the designs are more cartoony.
    • Rabbit and Fox frequently walked on all fours in the first season of the television series, but in later seasons they always walked on their hind legs.
  • Are We There Yet?:
    • Harriet gives an exasperated one in the Franklin's Magic Christmas special when she gets bored of the especially long car-ride to her and Franklin's grandparents on Faraway Farm. Later, a "We there yet?" is her way of revealing that she sneaked along on Franklin's secret attempt to ride a horse to Woodland.
    • In Franklin and the Green Knight, Snail sighs and asks this after he and Franklin go on a long journey to find a magic cherry tree supposedly contains blossoms that can bring spring. Fortunately, the answer is yes.
  • Argument of Contradictions:
    • Beaver and Fox have one throughout "Franklin's Halloween" over whether or not there are real ghosts. Later, they get into one about whether or not Mr. Owl's ghost disguise trick (he fooled them because they originally thought he was Bear, only to later to discover that Bear wasn't at the Halloween party) scared her, which is ended when Goose admits that it did scare her and Franklin says that it scared them all, but it was fun.
    • In "Franklin and the Adventure on the Planet Zorb" from Franklin and Friends, Franklin, Bear, Fox and Rabbit have one with Beaver and Goose over whether they should all play astronauts (the boys' chosen game) or pixies (the girls' chosen game.) They go back and forth several times until Snail declares a "red alert," saying that they're making his ears hurt. Franklin agrees that yelling at each other won't solve everything and they're forced to actually come up with a constructive solution to their problem.
  • Art Evolution: Thumb through the first Franklin book, then go through each season of the TV series, then the movies, and finally the CGI television series. Yep, they've come a long way.
  • Association Football: There are episodes that are entirely dedicated to football/soccer and they enjoy playing it from time to time. Perhaps most notably, the A plot of the special Back to School With Franklin is about Franklin and his friends preparing for a big soccer game.
  • Baby Talk: Earlier episodes and specials have Harriet talk like that, however she does grow out of it when the spinoff Franklin and Friends rolls around. Beaver also speaks in baby talk to both her pet hamster Henry (or "Chubby Cheeks, yes, he is a widdle Chubby Cheeks...") on Franklin and to the gecko Gordon on Franklin and Friends.
  • Bait-and-Switch Comment: In "Franklin the Engineer" from Franklin and Friends, after Franklin and the others accidentally break Mr. Mole's toy locomotive, Mr. Mole, sounding devastated comments "I've had this locomotive since I was seven..." only to then say "...and it's not the first time that it's broke."
  • Beach Episode: Franklin at the Seashore comes into mind. However, there's no Fanservice in this episode due to the show being about anthropomorphic animals.
  • Bedsheet Ghost: In the book Franklin's Halloween and the associated television story, it's said that Franklin and his friends know that Bear always wears this as his Halloween costume, so when Franklin gets to the Halloween party, he doesn't have to worry about trying to figure out who Bear is, even underneath all the disguises. He and his friends get tricked, however, because while there is one of these at the party, it's not Bear, who is home sick with a cold. It turns to be their teacher, Mr. Owl, who heard that Bear was at home and decided to play a trick on all of them.
  • Be Yourself: "Franklin and His Night Friend," probably other stories as well.
  • Big Blackout: This is what kickstarts the climax in Franklin's Magic Christmas. A massive icestorm causes a blackout to Faraway Farm and the surrounding area, causing Franklin and Harriet's parents to leave and go check on the Collies. Grandpa Turtle slips and falls on the ice and with no way to call for help, Franklin decides to try to set off for Woodland on his own to get the help of Dr. Bear, with Harriet secretly playing the Tagalong Kid.
  • Big Damn Movie: Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure. Complete with a Darker and Edgier plot about Franklin and friends going on a quest to find his Granny's lost time capsule, containing a Talisman that will prevent her from dying of illness. Granny even has a Troubled Backstory Flashback of her parents dying in a fire, shortly after she buried her time capsule. Also featuring not one, but two Award Bait songs in both the Opening and Closing credits, as well as higher quality animation.
  • Big Game: The big soccer match at the end of Back to School with Franklin. Unlike most instances of the trope, it ends in a tie.
  • Bigger Is Better: In "Franklin and the Woodland Fuzzies," when everyone stops playing with their Woodland Fuzzies, Franklin thinks that they don't like them anymore and so he creates a mega-sized one, figuring exactly this. As it turned out, his friends liked the Woodland Fuzzies because they were cute and small, they just didn't want to play with them all the time.
  • Bill... Bill... Junk... Bill...:
    • In "Franklin the Spy," Mr. Turtle does this with several pieces of mail, then gets excited when he finds the new issue of his Gardener's Monthly magazine.
    • Franklin also goes through a variant of this when he goes through the baby shower gifts in the Green Knight movie:
    For Baby Turtle... To Baby Turtle... Baby Turtle... Beat
  • Bindle Stick: The cover artwork of Kaboom! Back to School compilation DVD (which also features installments of George Shrinks, Elliot Moose, Timothy Goes to School and Pippi Longstocking) has an image of Franklin holding one of these in one hand and a book in the other. Additionally, the Franklin TV storybook Adaptation Distillation of "Franklin Runs Away" has Franklin carrying a bindle stick loaded with cookies in one hand and his stuffed dog Sam in the other.
  • Birthday Episode:
    • "Hurry Up, Franklin!" for Bear
    • "Franklin's Birthday Party" for the title character
  • Boring Return Journey: In Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure, the characters face various dangers and trials as they search for the talisman that will help them save Franklin's Granny. The return trip is depicted as a cheery canoe ride and a brief walk that is presented in about one minute of screentime, just long enough to play a triumphant instrumental version of one of the film's songs, "Getting There is Half the Fun." Averted in Franklin and the Green Knight: The Movie. Franklin and Snail do encounter some difficulty on their way back and end up calling for their newly friend, Eagle, who flies them to their friend Bear's place, where their friends and family are.
  • Borrowed Without Permission: In one episode, Franklin takes his school's toy schoolbus and tries to justify it by claiming he "borrowed it without asking".
  • Breakfast in Bed: In the Franklin Says I Love You book, Franklin is searching for something to do for his mother or something to give her for her birthday. He goes to his friends for ideas and they tell them what they've done before for their own mothers, but various reasons he rejects each idea. Bear tells him that he always brings his mother breakfast in bed, but Mrs. Turtle had told Franklin that she didn't like crumbs in bed. In the end, Franklin decides to combine all of his friends' ideas and serves her breakfast in bed anyway, with her being careful to brush away the crumbs.
  • Breakout Character: Mr. Groundhog in Franklin and Friends. This character never appeared in the books and only showed up late in the original Franklin TV series, appearing in just a couple of episodes. The writers of Franklin and Friends, however, seem to have taken a shine to him and have included him in many episodes, often in an at least somewhat central role.
  • Broken Treasure: While not exactly a treasure, a variation of this trope is used at the start of "Franklin and the Broken Globe." Franklin and Bear goof around in the one-room schoolhouse during recess as part of their "blackboard duty," and they start spinning the globe on Mr. Owl's desk, but end up accidentally knocking it off the desk and breaking it. They quickly set about to try and fix it before anyone finds out. They are able to simply piece the large broken chunks of the globe back together again, but recess ends before they can use tape to bond the pieces together. At first nobody notices the visible cracks on the globe, but just as Franklin and Bear prepare to tell the truth, Goose accidentally bumps into the damaged globe when going to sharpen her pencil, revealing to Mr. Owl and the others that it's broken, leading Goose to think she broke it and start thinking she is The Klutz, much to Franklin and Bear's relief... for a while.
  • Brutal Honesty: The subject of "Franklin's Homemade Cookies" - Franklin is unflinchingly critically honest of Bear's craft project that he gives to him and then has to deal with the same thing when it turns out his cookies have way too much ginger in them.
  • Buffy Speak:
    • In both the book and television versions of Franklin's Bad Day, Franklin declares it to be the "worstest day ever." Beaver says that there's no such word, but he replies that there is for him.
    • In "Super Cluepers' Case of the Missing School Bell" from Franklin and Friends, the Super Cluepers discover that the part of the bell that actually causes it to ring is missing. However, even after being told by Mr. Owl that this is called the "clapper," it ends up being referred to several times as the "ringy thingy."
  • Call-Back: Franklin's knight costume is seen in a treasure chest in Back to School With Franklin and that film also references Franklin's distaste for brussels sprouts from "Franklin's Blanket." The sixth season story "Sir Franklin's Squire" also heavily references Franklin and the Green Knight.
  • Canada, Eh?: Franklin is a Canadian production, and Mr. Marmot invoked the trope in Franklin Plays It Safe. To be specific, Mr. Marmot punctuates the end of every other sentence with an "Eh".
  • Canon Discontinuity:
    • Beaver got a pet hamster in the third season of the original show, but in "Franklin in the Gecko Games," on Franklin and Friends, it's said that one of the reasons she's excited about the idea of taking home the class gecko for the summer is that she doesn't have any pets of her own. Unless, of course, "doesn't have any pets" is just code for Henry having died and the characters not wanting to talk about it directly, but Franklin has never been afraid to tackle to tough issues before.
    • In "Who's Who in Woodland, Franklin?", Franklin and Bear are entirely unaware that Mr. Groundhog is the town weather forecaster and has many interesting weather gadgets. But Franklin learned all about the weather from Mr. Groundhog, as well as his gadgets, in the original show.
    • In Back to School with Franklin, Harriet was upset that she was losing her daily playmate because Beatrice was a year older than her and was starting preschool. In "Franklin's School" on Franklin and Friends, however, it's indicated that both are the same age and neither has ever been to school before, but both will soon be starting school with Mr. Owl.
    • Despite Skunk not being a regular character in Franklin and Friends, a skunk character was a seen a few times in earlier episodes. Then, the 2014 book Franklin and the Case of the New Friend, revealed that the kids were under the impression that there were no skunk families in Woodland and surprised when they found a photo of a skunk family. They dressed up as the Super Cluepers and discovered a shy skunk girl named, well, Skunk, and invited her to play with them and join the Super Cluepers.
  • The Case of...: On Franklin and Friends, many of the stories involving the Super Cluepers are titled this way.
  • Character in the Logo: Both the logo displayed at the end of the opening sequence and the logo that was typically used in merchandising had Franklin himself in them.
  • Character Title, or Character Name and the Noun Phrase for Franklin and Friends
  • Cheaters Never Prosper: Franklin cheats on a spelling test by having one of the words inside his cap and looking at it, so he could get a fancy pen. When Bear, the only one who didn't get a pen, realizes this, he calls Franklin out for cheating, with makes Franklin realize that getting the pen wasn't worth cheating on the test, so he returns the pen and admits to Mr. Owl what he did.
  • Chekhov's Gun: In "Franklin's Allergy," after Franklin and Bear get covered in mud after playing in a mud patch, Bear tells Franklin not to worry, that he'll just have a bath with his new bubble bath. It seems like a throwaway line - just something that would be mentioned in passing in a Slice of Life show. It turns out later that an ingredient in the bubble bath is the cause of the allergy mentioned in the story's title that keeps making Franklin sneeze throughout.
  • Cherry Blossoms: Cherry blossoms play an important role in Franklin and the Green Knight. In the story told in the film, the Green Knight finds a magic cherry tree, whose blossoms he uses to bring spring to a village that has been blanketed for far loo long under a deep winter snow. Then, later in the film, Franklin goes on a journey with Snail to find a cherry tree in order to bring spring to their home village, Woodland.
  • Christmas Episode: "Franklin's Christmas Gift" and the movie Franklin's Magic Christmas
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Moose, a character first seen in the original books. He showed up in some future books, but not so for the TV series. Instead, they did an entire story in the first season about how Moose moved to town, joined Franklin's class and the two became friends. He was then never seen again, the most likely explanation being that he was just too awkward to draw, given his large size and antlers. There are any of a number of other characters that have simply come and gone with no explanation. Franklin and Friends has been better about this, at least so far, anyway. Badger is nowhere to be seen in this new series, but otherwise they seem to have pretty much picked a stable cast of characters to stick with.
    • Porcupine (of Franklin’s generation), also only had one appearance on the show (around the same time, ironically enough). Unlike Moose, though, she was a case of Remember the New Guy?.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Franklin's response upon learning that his family is going to have a baby shower in Franklin and the Green Knight: The Movie. "How can you wash the baby if it isn't even here yet?"
  • Cool Teacher: Miss Koala, the replacement teacher in Back to School With Franklin. She rides around a motor-scooter and is decidedly pretty hip.
  • Covers Always Lie:
    • The cover artwork of Kaboom! Presents Christmas Carols, a compilation volume featuring Franklin and other shows, depicts Franklin holding his little sister Harriet, who is placing a hat on top of a snowman. It's a cute picture, but of the four Franklin stories featured on the release, only one of them is post Franklin and the Green Knight, "Franklin's First Star." It's a story focused on Franklin and his friends and Harriet barely appears in it, if at all.
    • The cover artwork of the Franklin and Friends release "Sharing is Caring" shows Franklin presenting a drawing of a heart to Harriet. Again, it's a deliberately cute picture, but there's no scene like this in any of the stories on the DVD and Harriet only appears in one of them. Seems whoever did the DVD covers for Kaboom liked the little tike or at least thought she's quite marketable.
    • "Family Day," another of the compilation releases, is even worse by having Harriet prominently on both the front and the back, despite all of the Franklin stories on the DVD being from before the fifth season.
  • Crash-Into Hello: In Polar Explorer, Franklin meets the penguin Pip after Pip crashes into him while sledding. Right before this, Franklin had been told that he wouldn't be seeing any penguins on his journey because they all live at the South Pole, not the North Pole.
  • Darker and Edgier: Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure. Tale of a grandmother's parents who died in a fire? Check. A grandmother who is sick and may be dying? Check. An epic quest with at least one character placed in real physical danger? Check.
  • Dead Pet Sketch: The "pet goes missing" variant in Franklin and the Two Henrys
  • Death Glare: In "Franklin and Beaver's Show-and-Tell" from Franklin and Friends, Beaver has a magnificent one for Franklin after he asks why she didn't tell him a bee was chasing her, even though she had been trying unsuccessfully to communicate this through charades because she lost her voice.
    Franklin: Oh, a bee was chasing you?! ... Why didn't you say so?
    Beaver: gives Death Glare
    Franklin: That was just a joke.
  • Decided by One Vote: In "Franklin and the Gecko Games," the vote to decide who gets to pet-sit the gecko Gordon for the summer, either Franklin or Beaver, is decided by one vote... or would be, except that Goose actually votes for both Franklin and Beaver and is told she can make her choice the next day. Still unable to decide, she holds the Gecko Games to decide which one will get this last deciding vote.
  • Distinction Without a Difference: In "Franklin's Maple Syrup," when Bear and Franklin lose a sledding race to Rabbit and Fox, they cheer about being first and Bear cheers "We're second!" Franklin asks what's great about being second when there's nobody to be third. Bear argues that it's better than saying that they lost.
  • Diurnal Nocturnal Animal: Owl and Badger, though badgers can sometimes be diurnal in certain seasons. Averted, however, with Bat.
  • A Dog Named "Dog": Nearly everyone but Franklin and his sister Harriet. Justified as Franklin was originally a one-shot book with Franklin being the only character and when the series was being made, she wanted to make Franklin stand out as the most important character by giving him a unique name and not the other characters. Adult characters are generally named using the rule of Species Surname, i.e. Mr. and Mrs. Turtle, Mr. and Mrs. Beaver, etc. If a character is given a sibling, a Punny Name is generally used fitting the animal theme, i.e. Bear's little sister Beatrice "Bea" Bear, or Beaver's little brother Kit.
    • This trope is Played With in Back to School with Franklin, when substitute teacher Miss Koala can easily guess everyone's names, but gets Franklin's name wrong when she calls him "Turtle".
  • Domestic Appliance Disaster: In "Franklin in Charge," Franklin tries to help his mother do the laundry. It doesn't go well, to say the least, and he ends up filling the basement with bubbles and on the ground stuck on his back/shell. He learns An Aesop about not having to take everything on his own shoulders and asking for help when necessary.
  • Doomy Dooms of Doom: Invoked by Beaver in Sir Franklin's Squire with The Obstacle Course Of Doom!
  • The Dreaded Pretend Tea-Party: Franklin's little sister Harriet loves hosting tea parties with her plush, and sometimes bringing in her best friend Beatrice as well. Franklin often ends up getting roped in, but he's generally actually pretty supportive.
  • Dreaming of Things to Come: In "Franklin Plays it Safe," Franklin has a nightmare about the treehouse being blown down by a stiff gust of wind with him and his friends in it. He manages to stop it by convincing everyone to stop playing in the treehouse, at least temporarily. When they decide to disregard him, the treehouse blows down exactly as in the dream, but it happens before they're able to climb into it.
  • Dream Within a Dream: In "Franklin the Fearless," Franklin has a nightmare about trying to reprise a daring stunt he only managed before by accident in which he falls and falls. He seems to wake up before he hits the ground, then heads off to perform the trick. He chickens out, then wakes up to find out that was just a nightmare as well. He then performs a Dream Reality Check by pinching himself and the pain proves he really is awake.
  • Duct Tape for Everything: "Franklin's Promise" has a notable subversion. Throughout most of the story, Mr. Turtle tries to fix a malfunctioning sprinkler, becoming increasingly desperate. He finally tries to solve the problem by just slapping a whole bunch of duct tape over the thing, only for the water to burst through and ruin this latest slap-job fix. He finally admits defeat and joins a picnic with Mrs. Turtle, Franklin and his friends.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness:
    • In the earliest books, Franklin had two friends named Duck and Hawk, neither of whom appeared in later installments.
    • In the first book, Franklin in the Dark, Franklin used to be afraid of going into his shell and dragged it around with him everywhere. He wears it for the remainder of the series. In addition, Franklin's parents used to be quadrupedal, and so did some of Franklin's friends, who were all much bigger than Franklin until they were all reduced to nearly the same height.
    • In the book version of Franklin is Bossy, Mr. Mole is referred to as simply "Mole."
    • In the book version of Franklin is Messy, Franklin's friends are okay with Franklin using a stick in place of a toy sword. In the television series, their reaction, indicated to be copied from their parents, is that he'll poke someone's eye out.
  • Ear Worm: In "Franklin and the Super Sleepover" from Franklin and Friends, the Turtle family learns at dinner that the Beaver family has their "Beaver Tooth Song," a catchy little tune about their strong beaver teeth that they sing before every meal. When they almost start breakfast that morning without it, Franklin reminds his family about it. Beaver thanks him for remembering, and he comments "Remember? How could we forget it?"
  • Episode Tagline: One episode involves Franklin and Harriet learning that saying the word "stupid" is impolite— apparently, even when not talking about people (e.g. "Stupid pencil!").
  • "Everybody Laughs" Ending: Common.
  • Everyone Went to School Together: Almost inevitable, given the limited number of characters
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Most of the episode titles.
  • Eye Pop: "Franklin is Messy" has a blink-and-you'll-miss-it visual gag in which while Franklin is digging through the stuff in his room he accidentally chucks a play block inside his fish Goldie's fishbowl, causing her eyes to bug out really wide, then dart behind her castle.
  • Face Palm:
    • Franklin does this in "Franklin and the Snoring Situation" on Franklin and Friends after Bear falls asleep again for what seems like the fifty millionth time.
    • He's done it in the past too; such as in the movie, Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure.
    • Beaver does one in Back to School with Franklin after Goose handles the ball with her wings in the game against the Bayside Bandits. (This was the reason Goose had become a goalie in the very first episode of the show, but in this story she was determine to try playing out for a change.)
  • Fantastic Racism: Franklin seemingly gets a bit of this from Goose's grandpa in "Franklin Migrates." "Hmph, turtle humour."
  • Fantasy Helmet Enforcement: There's at least one character whose ears stick straight up through their helmet. There's no story about someone getting in trouble because they don't think helmets are cool. There is, however, one entirely focused around Franklin getting a fancy new helmet with a flashing light on top because he's outgrown his old one and some of the other kids find the new helmet goofy. When he hears the kids making fun of that type of helmet, he hides it and tries to borrow his friend Bear's to use for a bike safety rally, only to be told that you should never wear a helmet that hasn't been specifically fitted for you. In the end, another friend helps him to see that it doesn't matter if the other kids think the helmet is dorky and the bike safety officer suggests that the flashing light could be a useful safety feature. He is seen wearing this helmet throughout the rest of the series. Fridge Logic; Franklin being a turtle, wouldn't his head be at more risk since the helmet would prevent him from fully retracting his head into his shell? Oh, and Franklin and Harriet are seen wearing seatbelts (and Harriet in an appropriate child safety seat) the few times that they're shown in a car.
  • Fear of Thunder: "Franklin and the Thunderstorm" deals with this. Franklin is helped by imagining the thunder as "cloud giants."
  • Feather Fingers: Goose, Mrs. Goose and Mr. Owl.
  • Feigning Healthiness: In "Franklin Gives Advice", Snail cracks his shell during a game of soccer, but fears that if he confesses, he'll be banned from soccer. So, he tries to lie that his pain is only a cramp and covers up the wound with a bandanna, band-aids, and a glove.
  • Feud Episode: The episode "Franklin's Favourite Card" in which Franklin and Bear argue over whether Bear lost Franklin's favourite soccer card, thus causing a rift in their friendship.
  • Fictional Holiday: In "Franklin Migrates" from Franklin, Goose invites Franklin to a Migration Eve party. He doesn't know what that is and she explains that although her own family doesn't migrate, each year they celebrate at their home with other geese that do. Franklin accepts her invitation, but begins to worry that he won't fit in. When he actually gets to the party, his worries seem to come true to him when it seems like Goose's grandfather doesn't like his jokes and then Goose's grandmother asks him to lead them in the Migration Eve dance. He runs away, and Goose says he's probably looking for the bathroom. She then finds him and he admits his worries. She tells him that nobody expected to actually know, that her grandma only wanted to teach him the dance, and that her grandfather's just grumpy because Franklin's jokes are funnier than his. Hearing this, Franklin finally relaxes and is able to enjoy the rest of the party, which is really just a friendly evening of dancing, eating good food and sharing stories.
  • Flashback... Back... Back...: Sort of happens to Franklin in "Franklin and the Copycat" after he regrets calling Rabbit one. "Look! I can do storm clouds too... clouds too... clouds too... clouds too!" "Rabbit, you're a copycat... copycat... copycat... copycat!" He doesn't slip into an actual flashback, though.
  • Forgiveness:
    • The episode "Franklin Forgives" in which Franklin's sister Harriet accidentally knocks the bowl of Franklin's goldfish, Goldie, into the water. Franklin is devastated and angry with Harriet. She tries various ways to make it up to him, but he eventually realizes how he would feel if he lost her when she tries to go search for the fish on her own.
    • The episode "Franklin Says Sorry" also deals with this (but more directly, the importance of apologizing for something.) Bear makes a flag for the group's make believe ship, and reluctantly shows Franklin when he notices him sneaking it there. Bear entrusts Franklin with keeping it a secret. Fox bugs Franklin to tell him the secret, promising not to tell, and Franklin does so. But when he and Bear return, we find Fox showing the flag to the others. The flag ends up getting ripped, leaving Bear furious with Franklin. After a few unsuccessful attempts to make things right, he finally lures Bear to the treehouse, and learns that the word "sorry" is more important than you think.
  • Free Prize at the Bottom: In "Franklin's Fossil," Franklin and Bear have been collecting a series of a colored spinning tops that they're using as models of the solar system. The last one that they need is a purple one that's supposed to represent Pluto (this being back when it was still a planet) and when Mr. Mole sees them playing with them, he mentions having found the purple one in his cereal box. Later, when Mr. Mole gives it to them, Bear is thrilled that they can finally start eating some different cereal.
  • Friendly Tickle Torture
    • Bear does this to Franklin at the end of "Franklin Goes to Day Camp," to get Franklin to give him his friendship bracelet.
    • This happens in the stage show Franklin's Big Adventure with "The Dinosaur Song," which is also available on the music album "Hey, It's Franklin!"
    "Doing the dinosaur dance and dinosaur wiggle! To make a dinosaur laugh, you gotta go tickle, tickle!"
  • Furry Confusion:
    • On one side of the scale, we have Franklin, Beaver, Goose, Bear, Eagle, etc, which are all semi-anthropomorphic: they almost look like their real world counterparts but are capable of speaking a common language and often the four legged animals walk on two. On the other hand, we have the Henry (a hamster - two hamsters actually, both named Henry), Goldie (Franklin's pet goldfish) and a baby duckling, and many other birds who are purely zoomorphic.
    • In "Franklin Migrates" (also available in book form as "Franklin Celebrates"), Franklin meets Goose's extended family, who all behave much more like regular geese by migrating to the south in the winter. The book version even goes so far as to suggest that Goose doesn't agree with her parents' practice of staying put. As the other geese fly away, Goose whispers "One day I will be with them, Franklin."
    • Then there was the story of Franklin wanting a pet dog. (His realization that a pet dog didn't suit him was how he ended up getting Goldie instead.)
    • The "Wake Up, Spring" song in Franklin and the Green Knight has Rabbit getting pelted by nuts after pestering a squirrel resting a tree while searching for signs of spring. Which is odd, because this series does have fully anthropomorphic squirrels. Non-anthro squirrels were also seen in some installments of the original television show. Franklin and the Green Knight also has what appear to be non-anthro deer, seen in the reprise of that song, performed by the characters.
    • In Franklin's Magic Christmas, Franklin's grandparents own a non-anthro cat named Whsikers, but also receive a visit from their anthro-doggy neighbors, Mr. and Mrs. Collie. Also, the reindeer are non-anthro, but nevertheless possessed of magic flying powers.
  • Furry Reminder: They're animals that walk and talk like humans, however:
    • Franklin eats flies, crickets, and is an herbivore. His sister Harriet has a fondness for eating caterpillars.
    • Bear loves honey, blueberries, takes many naps, and can climb tall trees.
    • Beaver loves to chew wood and build dams out of trees.
    • Rabbit loves to hop, play leapfrog, and is very quick.
    • Fox, especially in earlier installments, is often known to be tricky, and is shown walking on all fours in "Franklin is Lost".
    • Otter is a natural in the water.
    • Mr. Owl: Another Fall molt, where does the time go?
    • In the books, some characters (such as Beaver and Mrs. Turtle) occasionally walk quadrupedally.
  • Gilligan Cut:
    • In "Franklin's Bad Day":
    Mom: Hmm, some fresh air. What a good idea.
    Franklin: Mom, I don't want to go outside.
    Franklin: (suddenly dressed up and ready to go out to the snow) Okay, but I'm not going to play.
    • In "Franklin's Granny," Franklin and his friends plan a fun water balloon fight.
    Franklin: I wouldn't miss it for anything. (flipping scene changer to Franklin at home) But, Mom, I can't go to Granny's tomorrow!
  • Going in Circles: In "Franklin is Lost," (originally a book, adapted as a television story) Franklin and Fox get lost in a forest. They try to get out, only to end up circling right back to where they started. They then decide it's best to stay right where they are until someone comes looking for them.
  • Go to Your Room!: In both the book and television versions of Franklin's Bad Day, Franklin is sent to his room for a time-out after he arrives home cranky, throws his dirty and wet skates and mittens on the floor, and refuses to pick them up. He gets so mad once inside his room that he kicks down his block castle and Mr. Turtle discovers him in his room crying. At that, Franklin reveals that he made the castle with Otter, who's just moved away, and Mr. Turtle comforts him.
  • Grandfather Clause: The franchise seems to take place in a bizarre universe where certain old-fashioned things (such as Franklin and his friends going to an old-style one-room schoolhouse, older-style automobiles frequently in use, the characters using rotary phones, etc.) co-exist alongside certain modern things (such as 90s-style desktop computers, and Franklin and his friends going to said "li'l schoolhouse" on a modern school bus).
  • Green Aesop: "Franklin Plants a Tree," in which Franklin loses a small sapling and doesn't think that it's a big deal, until he learns that a tree is a living creature. It's actually probably one of the least Anvilicious examples of this trope that there is.
  • Halloween Episode: The book and original series episode "Franklin's Halloween", and the Franklin and Friends episode, "It's Halloween, Franklin!".
  • Happy Dance: Bear does a happy dance in Franklin Has a Sleepover after learning that Franklin has invited him for a sleepover. Franklin does one at the end after his parents agree that he can go over to Bear's place for a sleepover next time.
  • Have a Gay Old Time: During the song Deck The Halls at the opening of Franklin's Magic Christmas (Don we now our gay apparel). Justified in that the movie was aiming to use the traditional, unaltered lyrics of the featured songs.
  • Hello!: One of the songs from the Franklin's Big Adventure stage show is titled "Hello" and is about the museum guide, Carbunkel, wanting Franklin's class to give her a big happy "hello" in response whenever she says hello.
  • Hiccup Hijinks: "Franklin Has The Hiccups" is about Franklin getting hiccups the day before a big chess match. As it turns out, he got hiccups due to being too nervous. Once he calms down, he's cured.
  • Homoerotic Subtext:
    • Like you wouldn't believe. “Franklin Goes to Day Camp” absolutely reeks with romantic subtext. Franklin and Bear are shown to be inseparable like a couple. At the day camp, they meet Possum and Franklin invites him to join them. (This is the only episode Possum has appeared in, he is never mentioned again.) They all get along until Franklin realizes Possum only wants to play with Bear. He gets angry and jealous because Possum is stealing Bear away from him and he felt cheated on by Bear. Franklin throws a pinecone at Bear to get his attention but he doesn't blame Franklin even though he is an Honor Before Reason fellow. Franklin cries over losing Bear and how he left him for Possum, like someone after a break-up. The coach tells Franklin that even though he let Bear play with Possum, "Bear will always be your best friend." After they all make “friendship bracelets”, Franklin sees the two exchange bracelets and that was the end of his relationship, until Bear appears and says that his bracelet was actually for Franklin. Then, Bear tackles Franklin and begins to tickle him for Franklin's bracelet. Bear also likes to periodically tickle Franklin from behind and while on top of him.]Not even subtle.
    Bear: Hi Franklin. I made this for you.
    Franklin: But I saw you and Possum trading your bracelets.
    Bear: We were just showing them to each other. He's giving his to his best friend, Squirrel.
    Franklin: You sure played with Possum an awful lot.
    Bear: I thought you wanted us to be friends with him. It was your idea.
    Franklin: Yeah, but he just wanted to play with you.
    • "Franklin and the Pinecone Pass" has more thinly veiled subtext. Franklin wants to play with Bear, but runs into Rabbit and Bear enjoying Rabbit's game. Franklin immediately gets jealous and intervenes by trying to get Bear to play his game but they're having too much fun together. Franklin fears and laments that Bear has left him for a a new "best friend". The show likes to have close pairs like Franklin/Bear, Beaver/Goose, Fox/Rabbit, and then Franklin tells Fox his predicament. Fox thinks it's silly because even though Rabbit is playing with Bear, they are still best friends with Fox and Franklin, respectively. Franklin learns that you can still be "best friends" with someone even if they hang out or play with other people or someone else's "best friend". note 
    • "Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure" has Franklin meet Sam, his Aunt Lucy's goddaughter. After starting off on the wrong foot, Franklin is encouraged to be nice to Sam. Over the course of the film, he spends more time with Sam than his friends. While Beaver and Snail don't seem to mind, Bear grows more and more jealous and resentful of Sam. The final straw comes when Sam suggests they spilt into teams to find the treasure and Franklin decides to spilt up with Sam and doesn't include him. Bear storms off and when Franklin goes to talk to him, Bear rants at him for forgetting about them and says it's like Sam is his girlfriend, coming off like a jealous boyfriend. He feels better once Franklin reassures him that they'll always be best friends and that his behavior towards Sam is because his parents made him. At the party at the end of the movie, he also shares a hug with Franklin.
  • Honesty Aesop: In the book "Franklin Fibs", Franklin lies that he can eat 76 flies at once, but then has to admit he lied after his friends ask him to do it.
  • Human Ladder: Franklin, Bear, Beaver and Rabbit do this in the "Wake Up, Spring" song in Franklin and the Green Knight' while searching for signs of spring.
  • Hurt Foot Hop:
    • In "Franklin's Mom," Mr. Turtle drops a heavy frying pan on his foot and does this. His injury is what results in the story's plot of Mrs. Turtle leading Franklin and Bear's camping trip instead of him.
    • In "Franklin and the Pinecone Pass" on Franklin and Friends, Franklin gets so frustrated and upset that Bear wants to play Rabbit's new game (Pinecone Pass) instead of playing with him that he kicks a rock, hard. (Too bad he doesn't wear the shoes described in the books' traditional opening.) He hops up and down, clutching his foot, and a just-arriving Beaver reminds him that it's balls that are good for kicking, not rocks.
  • Hypocritical Humor: In "Franklin Migrates," Bear and Franklin get a little too loud and excited while in the library, so Mrs. Goose comes to to tell them to use their library voices. She then says that Goose told her that Franklin agreed to come to their Migration Eve Party and tells him in her loud, musical voice, "Bring your dancing shoes!"
  • I Ate WHAT?!: At one moment, Franklin's mother offers cookies. Franklin and his friends get one. Franklin's mother says that they are fly cookies. Franklin is the only one who does not return his (and the cookies that came back already had a bite). Franklin's mother decides to make chocolate-chip cookies, instead.
  • I Can See My House from Here: Rabbit does this from inside a barrel in "Franklin the Planner" on Franklin and Friends.
  • I Have This Friend: Franklin uses this in Back to School With Franklin, telling his parents that Bear has reservations about Miss Koala as the replacement teacher for Mr. Owl, when he's really the one who isn't so sure about her.
  • I Have to Go Iron My Dog:
    • In "Franklin's Advice," Snail uses the excuse that he has to help his father to push a pinecone to get out of sitting on Franklin's shoulder as he jumps rope, so that he won't have to reveal that he cracked his shell and is in pain.
    • All of Franklin's friends make an excuse of this type when Franklin suggests that they go play baseball in "Franklin is Bossy." (It was a very hot day and all they really wanted to do was go swimming.)
    • In "Franklin's Big Game," Franklin and his friends are excited about playing a game against the Churchill Bears, a visiting team, until they see how good they really are. When of the Bears invites them to join their practice, they start making various excuses, Goose's being that she has to go wash her feathers.
  • I'll Be Your Best Friend: In "Franklin and the Trading Cards," both Fox and Beaver behave in this manner to try to get Franklin to give them the coveted card, offering favors and such.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: In "Franklin Sees the Big Picture," upon seeing Franklin and Bear dressed as superheroes, the librarian Mrs. Goose suggests that maybe they'll have to help her rescue somebody who's "lost in a book."
  • Inevitable Waterfall: Franklin rescues Snail from going over the edge of one just in the nick of time following the "I Wonder" song in Franklin and the Green Knight.
  • Innocent Swearing: Used at one point, with the "swear word" stupid. Harriet learns the word from Franklin when he lets it slip by an accident. When Harriet says the word during dinner, Franklin was forced to fess up and said that he if he kept Harriet busy all day, it would get her to stop saying her new word.
  • Instantly Proven Wrong: In the opening of "Franklin in Charge," Mr. Turtle is leaving for a trip to Uncle Snapper's and Mrs. Turtle is trying to make sure he has everything he needs. He tells her that he's only going for a couple days and didn't forget anything.
    Harriet: (jiggling a pair of keys) Daddy keys!
    Mr. Turtle: Oh. I won't get too far without those, will I?
    • Again in "Franklin's Word", when Franklin thinks his little sister Harriet has forgotten the word "stupid"… only for her to say it immediately after.
  • It's Always Spring: There was enough seasonal material to well avert this. Particularly noteworthy was the fact that there were four films and of them, only one seems like it might have been set in spring, Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure. The first film, Franklin and the Green Knight, was set almost entirely in winter and featured a Spring Is Late situation. The second film, Franklin's Magic Christmas, was a Christmas holiday special. The third film, Back to School with Franklin, opened with a summer sequence and the rest of the film was set in... well, still summer most likely technically, since it was the start of a school year, and summer doesn't end until later in September.
  • It's the Best Whatever, Ever!:
    • In "Franklin Has a Sleepover," both Franklin and Bear declare it to be the "best sleepover ever".
    • Happens every now and then in Franklin and Friends as well.
  • I've Heard of That — What Is It?:
    • In "Franklin in the Stars" from Franklin and Friends, Aunt T suggests that she, Franklin and Harriet might be able to see Saturn using the telescope that she brought. Franklin comments "Wow, Saturn!", then asks her what that is.
    • In "Franklin the Dinosaur Hunter," also from Franklin and Friends, Mrs. Turtle tells Franklin, Bear and Rabbit that they found the time capsule she buried. They all get excited, saying that it's "sweet" and "awesome," then Franklin asks what a time capsule is.
  • Jerkass Realization:
    • In "Franklin's Favorite Card", Franklin has one of these after the Plot-Mandated Friendship Failure moment below.
    • In "Franklin Forgives," Franklin forgives Harriet for accidentally knocking his pet fish Goldie into the pond after realizing how awful he's been to her and how horrifying it would be if she were the one who were missing. In returns, she forgives him for having been like this.
  • Kids Prefer Boxes: In "Franklin's Big Box" from Franklin and Friends, Franklin's Aunt T tries to invoke this by sending Franklin a large decorated box in the mail with nothing in it. At first, Franklin and his friends think maybe she just forgot to put in a gift and decide to go visit her place to ask her about it. Along the way, however, they have fun with the box, and by the time they've reached Aunt T's, Franklin's decided to thank her for just sending the empty box.
  • Kids Shouldn't Watch Horror Films: "Franklin and the Creepy Clock" from Franklin and Friends has Franklin reading his little sister Harriet the scary story, Tobias Turtle and the Mysterious Clock after she begs him to do so. She is badly spooked by it and becomes frightened of Aunt T's grandfather clock until they all paint it together with soothing designs and ladybugs to make it not be scary.
  • Know-Nothing Know-It-All: Beaver. In fairness, she is smart as a whip, but she's just as often wrong as she is right.
  • Laborious Laziness: "Franklin's Day Off" has An Aesop of sorts about this. Franklin spends most of the episode dealing with problems he wouldn't have had if he had just done the work was supposed to do instead of putting it off, such as needing a rake that was holding up the Blanket Fort he didn't take down in order to rake up leaves which have buried a bicycle pump that he wouldn't have had trouble finding if he had put it away properly in the first place.
  • Large Ham:
    • In the TV version of "Franklin's Valentines," Beaver's Valentine box is plastered with massive photos of herself. Bear jokingly asks her which box is hers.
    • Beaver herself is very much this throughout the original TV series. She is considerably less hammy in Franklin and Friends.
  • Last-Minute Baby Naming: In Franklin and the Green Knight, when Franklin's baby sister is brought home, Granny Turtle asks if they have a name for her, resulting in a sort of embarrassed mutter from Mr. Turtle about how they "have some ideas." Franklin then brightly says that they should call her Harriet, because Great Aunt Harriet always gives the best presents and the baby is sort of like the perfect present. Everyone agrees.
  • Licensed Games: Two Game Boy Advance games, one Nintendo DS game, and one PlayStation 2 game. All of them by The Game Factory.
    • Edutainment Games: A few PC edutainment titles from Vivendi Universal also exists, as does a few educational electronic LCD hand-held games from Tiger Electronics.
  • Little Sister Is Watching: In "Franklin's Word," Franklin's thoughtless use of the word "stupid" causes his little sister, Harriet, to start doing it as well. This causes him to realize that his little sister really does see him as a role model and he resolves to start being more thoughtful in his words and behavior when she's around.
    Franklin: I'm sorry, mom. I tried my best not to say the word, but it slipped out by accident. It only happenend once, but I guess Harriet is a fast learner. I thought if I kept her busy all day, she'd forget it.
    Mr. Turtle: Well, Franklin. Young children like Harriet are very interested in new words, especially words that get a big reaction from their big brother.
    Harriet: Stupid blue bird.
    Mrs. Turtle: The best thing to do is to ignore it. Eventually, she'll get bored with her new word. All she really wanted to do was spend time with her big brother.
  • Long-Running Book Series: The first book in the series was released in 1986, and had new releases every so often until 2001. The TV series didn't first appear until 1996 and continued releasing new content as late as 2006. With the advent of Franklin and Friends, new books have been released. While at first released only in Canada, they later found their way to the United States.
  • Loose Tooth Episode: In "Franklin and the Tooth Fairy", Bear loses a tooth. Franklin is confused because he doesn't have any teeth (being a turtle and all) until the others explain the concept of the tooth fairy. When Franklin hears that losing teeth means you're growing up, he feels left out, so he puts a white rock under his pillow to fool the tooth fairy. This doesn't fool her at all, much to his disappointment, but his parents say he's still growing up with or without teeth.
  • Magic Feather: In one of the stories, Bear believes he's having bad luck, so his friends try to find him a Four-Leaf Clover. Not able to find one, they just give him a fake four-leaf clover that is really a regular clover with an extra-leaf taped on. Bear gains confidence and does stuff well until he finds out that it's not a real four-leaf clover— but then his friends remind him that since it wasn't real, that means he did everything on his own.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane:
    • Was Granny saved by the power of the Turtle Talisman in Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure, or simply by the return of her old keepsake? Perhaps not so mundane, though, as Franklin feels that maybe what healed her was "something stronger than magic."
    • In Franklin and the Green Knight, did Franklin and Snail really bring spring to Woodland Valley with the magic cherry blossoms? It was already about time for spring anyway and it appeared as though the signs of early growth were already there. On the other hand, if there was no magic, then how was there a cherry tree in full blossom so close to Woodland Valley?
  • Meaningful Name: In Franklin and Friends, the pilot Miss Periwinkle is given the first name Amelia, which is presumably a reference to famed pilot Amelia Earhart.
  • Merit Badges for Everything: In "Franklin Wants a Badge," Franklin desperately tries to earn merit badges, but ends up continuously stopping to help out his little sister, Harriet. He eventually earns the "Caring Brother Badge."
  • Minimalist Cast: It is rather rare to see any characters other than the main cast of kids, their parents and Mr. Owl and the characters who run the shops like Mr. Mole, even though there should be way more people in order for those shops to actually reasonably remain in business. Franklin and his friends are almost never shown playing with anyone other than each other and although characters other than Franklin and Bear are said to have siblings, they are only ever seen once or a few times at most.
  • Mistakes Are Not the End of the World: This is the basic Aesop of "Franklin's Soccer Field Folly." During a soccer match, Franklin accidentally gets his shell turned around backwards and unable to see properly, ends up scoring on his own goal. Everyone laughs about it, but he personally doesn't find it funny. What really gets his goat, though, is that throughout the day his best friend Bear continues to make light of the incident. He eventually snaps at him in a way that shocks him and all of his friends. When he gets home, he explains what happened to his parents. Mr. Turtle then shares a story of a time when he belched in the middle of a recital of "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" at school. After a brief moment of shocked embarrassment, there was nothing else for it but for him to laugh it off himself. Mrs. Turtle then shares her own story of being out shopping with Harriet that morning. She grabbed an orange from a precariously placed stack and the entire pile toppled onto the floor. Harriet got a good laugh out of it and Mrs. Muskrat, who happened to be there shopping also, quipped that the forgot to put oranges on her shopping list and stopped to help pick them up. Hearing these stories helps Franklin to see that he was too hard on Bear and he ends up inviting him to dinner to apologize. During the dinner, Bear has trouble squirting the mustard for his hot dog and ends up getting it all over his shirt. Franklin busts out giggling and after a brief moment, Bear looks down at his shirt and quips "Mustard, anyone?" resulting in an "Everybody Laughs" Ending.
  • Monster Is a Mommy: In Franklin and the Green Knight, Franklin and Snail find the "magic cherry tree" and then start getting pecked like crazy by a seemingly vicious warbler bird. It turns out that she's just protecting her eggs, though once Franklin and Snail state that they don't want her eggs, she becomes positively pleasant. The same is also true of Eagle beforehand, which Franklin equates with the monster from the Green Knight story and draws his paper sword as if to fight her. She tells him that she has no interest in fighting him, gives both him and Snail a ride, and later says she has to go because she needs to take care of her eaglets. This also happens with a bird dubbed the Wily Winged Beast in the stage show Franklin and the Adventures of the Noble Knights, who is Not Evil, Just Misunderstood and gets her own song about it titled "Misunderstood."
  • The Movie:
    • Even popular series of this sort are usually lucky to get even one movie. Franklin got four of them— Franklin and the Green Knight: The Movie (the only one to include the phrase "The Movie" in the title), Franklin's Magic Christmas, Back to School With Franklin and Franklin in the Turtle Lake Treasure. The final one was the only one released to theaters. It was seen theatrically in France, as Franklin et le tresor du lac.
    • Franklin and the Green Knight received theatrical releases in certain markets, most notably in its home country of Canada.
  • Moving Angst: In "Franklin's Bad Day", Franklin is very upset after Otter moves away, to the point where everything he tries to do goes bad. After Franklin bursts into tears and tells his father how he feels about his friend's departure, he finds out that he can still keep in touch with Otter and sends him a puzzle through the mail.
  • The Moving Experience: In "Franklin's Party Plans," Franklin gets the idea that Skunk is moving away to another town, but she's just moving to another street.
  • Mundane Ghost Story: In "Franklin's Campout" from Franklin and Friends, Mr. Turtle tells Franklin a story, of which we only hear the ending: "And that is why you always have to brush your teeth before you to go to bed!" Franklin complains that it wasn't scary, nor even a ghost story. He says he'll save himself for next time. Notably, the series itself is inconsistent on whether or not turtles, anthropomorphic ones anyway, even have teeth.

    Tropes N to Z 
  • The Narrator: Used Once per Episode at the beginning of each episode to give viewers a brief description of what's about to happen in the story, a format adapted from the original books. The original narrator was replaced later in the series, though both were female. The only time the Narrator got any narration outside of the opening was in the Franklin and the Green Knight: The Movie, but all three of the films that followed didn't contain any narration at all, even at the start. The Narrator has also been done away with in Franklin and Friends.
  • Never Say "Die": In "Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure," Franklin, Beaver, Bear, His Aunt Lucy, and her Goddaughter Sam go on a quest to find a Talisman to cure Franklin's Granny because she's "very, very sick," although you can tell it's not only that, she's about to die.
    Franklin: Maybe we should just camp here, and head home in the morning, so I can say goodbye to Granny before she-
    Aunt Lucy: Oh, Franklin...
  • New Baby Episode:
    • In the Franklin and the Green Knight movie, Franklin learns that his mother is pregnant and that he'll have a new baby sister when spring arrives. However, winter is lasting longer than usual, so Franklin decides to become a knight to seek spring (while also worrying about not getting enough attention). At the end, his baby sister Harriet is born.
    • In "Franklin's Baby Sister" (this is the book version of Franklin and the Green Knight), Franklin's mother gets pregnant and is due to give birth in spring. Franklin is excited, but he gets dismayed that he has to wait until winter is over. His baby sister Harriet is born at the end, and he's happy to see her.
    • In "Franklin and the Baby", Bear's mom is pregnant. Bear is initially excited, until his baby sister Beatrice is born and he doesn't get as much attention as he used to. His mother tells him that his parents still love him and since Beatrice is still little, she needs to be looked after.
  • Newhart Phone Call: In "Franklin Has a Sleepover," Franklin places a call to Bear after his parents agree to allow him to invite Bear over for a sleepover. After Mrs. Bear picks up, Franklin asks to speak to Bear. We hear Bear's side of the conversation, which consists of "You did? ... They did? ... We can? I'll ask. (stops to asks his parents if it's okay) Franklin, I can! Okay, see you later."
  • No Antagonist: Well, no real ones, only imaginary ones and the obstacles that Franklin has to face, or on occasion perceived ones that turn out to be misunderstood. The only example that could really be said to be straight is the dragon within the storybook The Quest of the Green Knight.
  • No Ending: In "Franklin Has the Hiccups," we never find out the outcome of the chess match. It just ends with Franklin and Marmot agreeing to each play their best and have fun, then heading inside to have the match.
  • Noodle Incident: Fox says in "Franklin is Lost" that he's going to be in big trouble as his parents told him "a million times" to stay out of the woods, implying that he's been lost in the woods at least once before.
  • Not Me This Time: In "The Missing Monarch Mystery" from Franklin and Friends, Franklin and his friends, as the mystery-solving team The Super Cluepers, don't have much luck finding monarchs. At one point, they and particularly Giggler (Rabbit), blow around a bunch of milkweed seeds to try to attract monarchs, only to learn that monarchs just lay their eggs on the plants and aren't attracted by the seeds. Later, they do tai-chi on Aunt T's advice to try to relax and notice things. Franklin, which his eyes closed, gets tickled by some milkweed blown by the wind. He tells Rabbit to stop blowing it, but Rabbit says the trope word-for-word. Franklin opens his eyes, sees the wind is blowing it, and realizes they can follow the wind to where the milkweed plants and therefore the monarchs are.
  • Not My Lucky Day: In "Franklin and the Fortune Teller," Beaver's fortune-teller tells Franklin that he's going to have a bad day the next day. This ends up becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy, as Franklin stays home the next day, stating the mantra that the safest place to be on a bad day as at home. However, this causes him to miss out on all of the fun things that happen to his friends, such as getting free ice cream at Mr. Skunk's ice cream shop when he has to change out his freezer. He finally decides to join his friends outside, rationalizing that things can't get any worse than they've already been by his choosing to spend the day at home, and finally breaks out of the funk.
  • Not-So-Innocent Whistle: Franklin tries this in "Franklin's Crystal" when he cheats the spin to determine whether he or Beaver will get to have custody of the crystal they found together first. Beaver isn't fooled for one second.
  • Odd Name Out: Let's see, you got Beaver the beaver, Fox the fox, Bear the bear, Rabbit the rabbit, and Franklin...the turtle. Paulette Bourgeois says that "Franklin in the Dark" was intended to be a one-shot story with Franklin being the only character. But when she made more stories, she wanted to emphasize the importance of Franklin and that he is the main character by not giving the other characters names, thus making Franklin unique and important.
  • Once an Episode: Each book begins the same way: "Franklin could count by twos and tie his shoes."
  • One-Shot Character: The four animals that Franklin meets in “Franklin in the Dark” (Duck, Lion, Sparrow and Polar Bear) Moose (in the TV series), Possum, Bat, Kit, Aunt Lucy, Sam, the Crabs from "Franklin at the Seashore," Franklin's maternal grandparents and the Collies. Ms. Periwinkle, the snail pilot from "Franklin and Snail's Dream" was one until she got more appearances in Franklin and Friends.
  • One, Two, Skip a Few: In "The Dinosaur Song" from the stage show Franklin's Class Trip, the Dinosaur tells Franklin that he is 100 million years old.
    Snail: One hundred million? Is that a very big number, Franklin?
    Franklin: I'm not sure. Let me see... one, two, three, four, five, six, seven... one hundred million! Yep, it's big.
  • The One Who Wears Shoes: "Franklin could count by twos and tie his shoes..." except he doesn't wear shoes, most of the time. The cast are generally Barefoot Cartoon Animals and Franklin is usually no exception. Several of the books, however, do depict him sometimes wearing shoes and Franklin is the only character ever seen wearing boots on a cold winter's day.
  • Opposing Sports Team: The Bayside Bandits in Back to School with Franklin. Curiously, it's a team of all raccoons, so it's not surprising that Raccoon is nowhere to be seen in this film.
  • Orphan's Plot Trinket: Granny's time capsule, the titular treasure in Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure, along with the talisman and photograph within it.
  • Our Goblins Are Different: The goblin in the The Quest of the Green Knight story from Franklin and the Green Knight is called a goblin but really doesn't look or behave much like a traditional goblin at all, other than being somewhat on the small side. He is rescued from a traditional-looking griffin by the Green Knight, after which he gives him advice on how to find the object of his search: cherry blossoms that can bring spring. Appearance-wise, if anything, he looks like some sort of buck-toothed, long-tailed anthropomorphic rodent.
  • Out-of-Context Eavesdropping: This is the basis of "Franklin Snoops." After Franklin and Bear get spy kits, they start spying on their friends. They overhear Beaver and Goose plotting something and tape them saying that something is going to happen when one of them says "It looks like rain," but because the tape cuts off, they don't hear the rest. They assume it's a prank that involves spraying them with a hose and decide to turn the prank on them, but actually, "It looks like rain," is just a stage direction for a puppet show.
  • Perfect Health: Averted with Bear. On the day of Halloween, Bear came down with a cold with a stuffy nose and sneezes. He couldn’t make it to the Halloween party that night. Considering that his mother is a doctor and some episodes focus on doctors and health care, the show averts Perfect Health by having the doctor treat characters’ illnesses.
  • Pet Baby Wild Animal: In "Franklin and the Duckling," Franklin tries to adopt a duckling as a pet. He doesn't get to keep it for very long, though, as he's quickly caught by his parents.
  • Picky Eater: One of the shows' stories is focused on Franklin and his entire group of friends behaving like picky eaters and not wanting to try any of the new food that each of them is bringing to a picnic. The stalemate ends when Franklin and Bear unwittingly eat some pizza made with spinach and say that they like it.
  • Playground Song: Franklin and his friends sing "Down By the Bay" in "Franklin Goes to Day Camp."
  • Playing a Tree: Bear plays a tree in the play in "Franklin and the Snow Princess" from Franklin and Friends. Goose plays the glistening snow, Rabbit is the whooshing wind.
  • Plot-Mandated Friendship Failure: This occurs between Franklin and Bear in "Franklin's Favourite Card".
  • Potty Emergency: In "Franklin Goes to School," while everyone rides the bus to school, Goose asks Franklin if he thinks there's a bathroom at school, saying that her mother told her to use the bathroom before she left. Although she doesn't say so directly, she rather looks like she needs to go.
  • Pregnant Reptile: Franklin is eventually given a little sister, but the mother was depicted as going through a normal pregnancy with her instead of laying an egg.
  • Prima Donna Director: Beaver in "Franklin and the Puppet Play." Asked to direct a puppet play of Little Red Riding Hood, she assigns herself the starring role and doesn't let anyone else have any input. Things come to a head when Beaver catches the others mocking her bossiness. See also Tyrant Takes the Helm for when Beaver is asked to coach the soccer team.
  • Primal Fear: The first book of the series, Franklin in the Dark, dealt with Franklin's fear of darkness. It was later adapted as one of the TV stories. Creator Paulette Bourgeois was inspired to create the story by the events of an episode of M*A*S*H.
  • Protagonist Title: Only the original TV adaptation was simply named Franklin where the books became the TV episodes and the book titles were the episode titles. Averted with the movies and the CGI series Franklin and Friends, though that one is Protagonist and Friends.
  • Puppy Love: In-universe example - In "Franklin and Betty," Franklin's friends try to suggest this about Franklin and Beaver's cousin Betty. They manage to get Franklin's goat for a little while, but Bear helps him to see that if he enjoys hanging out with Betty, that's all right, and he shouldn't let it get to him.
  • "Reading Is Cool" Aesop: At least a couple of different installments have promoted reading and literacy.
  • Removable Shell: Franklin and all of his family members have shells that are removable. Played with in a fire safety story in which Mr. Turtle found that he could not evacuate his house by the window unless he first removed his shell. This doesn't seem to be the case in Franklin and Friends, though, in which Franklin is never seen removing his shell, nor hiding in it. Additionally, he mentions that it grows with him, and it can also get itchy, both of which suggest that it's an integrated part of his body.
  • Retcon:
    • A number of the TV Storybooks insert Franklin's sister Harriet into stories in which she didn't appear in the TV version because she wasn't born until after the fourth season of the program.
    • In "It's Father's Day, Franklin!" in the Franklin and Friends series, Goose reveals that her parents are divorced, which is definitely at least a "Wait, what?!" for long time viewers and possibly a retcon, as this was never mentioned in any of the books, nor six seasons and four movies of the original television show. Mr. Goose was seen before in the original television program (he's Woodland's pharmacist) and Franklin once visited Gooses's house for a party, but this never came up. It's as good an explanation as any though for why Mr. Goose is so rarely seen.
    • Alternatively, this can be seen as a revision of sorts, as it is heavily implied that the Franklin and Friends series takes place a while after the original Franklin show; with the fact that Goose's parents filed for divorce in between this time frame.
    • Season 3's "Franklin and the Copycat" has Mr. Mole teaching Mr. Turtle to play golf for the first time, while Season 5's "Franklin Plays Golf" at the very least heavily implies that Mr. Turtle is an accomplished golfer with his own set of clubs who eagerly anticipates each new golf season. No matter how you slice the timeline, or lack of one, on this series, something about that just doesn't quite tally.
    • In one of the stories from Franklin and Friends, Franklin tries to teach Goose to fly, with it eventually being decided that it's okay for her to wait until she's a bit older. But in Franklin and the Green Knight, Goose flew twice in the "Wake Up, Spring" song (one of these flights is actually shown in the intro when you load the DVD), and there were possibly other instances of flight in the original series as well.
  • Ret-Gone: Kit is nowhere to be seen in Franklin and Friends. One of the stories has what is said to be the entire Beaver family staying over at the Turtles and Kit is nowhere to be seen, so it seems safe to say he doesn't exist in this series.
  • Retro Universe: The stories and the animated TV shows take place in a universe where certain old-fashioned things co-exist alongside modern ones. The kids attend an old-style one-room school house that they get to and from on a contemporary-looking school bus, the adults drive cars and trucks straight out of The '40s, rotary phones are used alongside contemporary desktop computers, and more.
  • Riding into the Sunset: Franklin does this with Rabbit's scooter at the end of "Franklin and the Red Scooter" after they agree to a trade.
  • Right Behind Me: Happens to Franklin, Bear and Goose in "Franklin in the Puppet Play" when they make fun of Beaver's bossiness and then realize that she's standing right behind them.
  • Rule #1: In Franklin's Big Adventure, one of the stage shows, Franklin is seriously weirded out by the seeming oddness of the museum-guide, Carbunkel, who presents herself as a "highly respected professional guide person" and among other things presents a list of rules for the museum visit with the help of a group of singers, in the middle of a song she's singing herself.
    Miss Carbunkel: But before we make our way beyond those doors, there are a few things we must all be aware of.
    Vocalists: Rrrule number one!
    Miss Carbunkel: Stay together. We can't have you youngsters running all over the place.
    Vocalists: Rrrule number two!
    Miss Carbunkel: Don't touch anything! The museum is filled with old and very delicate objects that haven't felt the warmth of a human hand in thousands of years. And...
    Vocalists: Rrrule number three!
    Miss Carbunkel: When I say "Hello!," I want you to say hello right back at me!
  • The Runaway: In "Franklin Runs Away," Franklin and Snail briefly become runaways after a bad day: being scolded by Mr. Owl at school for talking during reading time, chastised for supposedly not playing fair at sports, Bear getting angry at Franklin for having a library book that's almost overdue, and Mrs. Turtle getting upset at them for making a mess after they decide to make their own snack because she was too busy painting the shed to make them one. Their refuge is the treefort, but it doesn't last very long at all, as Snail quickly points out the flaws in the idea. Then, when they go back to Franklin's' place to get some supplies, they get found hiding in the closet after hiding there because Bear knocked on the door. He brought the book back, having renewed it. When Mrs. Turtle finds them in the closet, they blurt out their whole "living in the treefort" plan.
  • Running Gag: A bit of a running gag in the original television series and films is that Franklin is unable to self-right if we falls over backwards on his shell. In Franklin and Friends, however, he is able to do so. Also, he and Harriet both have no problem self-righting after falling over on their own to make snow-angels in Franklin's Magic Christmas, suggesting it runs in part on Rule of Funny.
  • Russian Reversal: In "Franklin's Backwards Day" from Franklin and Friends, Rabbit puts a chair on his back, saying that in honor of Backwards Day, he thought that his chair should sit on him.
  • Safety Worst:
    • Subverted in "Franklin Plays it Safe." After the village safety inspector, Mr. Marmot, tells them that it's "better to be safe than sorry," Franklin and Bear start becoming militant about safety and, among other things, stop their friends from playing in the treehouse when one of the branches develops a crack. Though their fears are dismissed as silly, they turn out to be justified. When the other kids get tired of being told what to do, they decide to go play in the treehouse, but right before they enter, it gets blown down by a stiff wind. Everyone is immediately repentant to Bear & Franklin and everyone pitches in (with adult help) to build a new treehouse.
    • Played a bit more straight in the fire-safety story "Franklin and the Fire," in which Franklin tries to remove anything from the Turtle family household that he thinks could be a potential fire hazard, including candles and a toaster.
  • The Scapegoat: Goose becomes this in "Franklin and the Broken Globe." Bear and Franklin have done a shoddy attempt at trying to fix Owl's broken globe during recess before anyone notices, and when Goose goes to sharpen her pencil she accidentally hits the damaged globe with her wing, revealing it's broken. But Goose thinks she broke it and accepts the blame, and at first Bear and Franklin are relieved, but Goose goes onto think she is The Klutz and not want to do anything with her friends anymore, and Bear and Franklin soon start to feel guilty and eventually confess to Mr. Owl that they were the ones that broke the globe in the first place.
  • Schmuck Bait: Franklin and Rabbit fall for an obvious prank involving chocolate tied to a rope in "Franklin's Funny Business." To be fair, the prankers used Reverse Psychology on the duo, after being pranked by them.
  • School Play: The first came in the first season story "Franklin's School Play" (based on the book by the same name) and featured The Nutcracker as the play. In the story, Franklin was the Nutcracker Prince, but had to overcome stage fright to perform the role. The second play was in the third season story "Franklin's Starring Role," a performance of Sleeping Beauty. In this story, Franklin doesn't have stage fright anymore, and is upset when he is assigned the role of stage manager, thinking his teacher Mr. Owl doesn't think he's good enough to have a part. In the end, he learns that Mr. Owl gave him the role of stage manager because he felt he was responsible and he wanted to give others a chance to play roles after Franklin had the lead in the last play. The third play was in the film Franklin and the Green Knight, a performance of a fairy tale picture book popular in Woodland: The Quest of the Green Knight. Franklin again takes the lead role this time, as the Green Knight, though the film is also about him thinking that he could truly become the Green Knight and bring Spring, as the Green Knight in the story does. The Franklin and Friends story "Franklin Switches it Up" has the final play, a swashbuckling adventure written by Rabbit and Snail called Pirates from Space.
  • Scout-Out: The Woodland Trailblazers in "Franklin Wants a Badge."
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: Franklin has this reaction in the stage Franklin's Class Trip when he and his class visit the science museum and are greeted in song by their "highly respected and professional" but nevertheless somewhat eccentric guideperson, Miss Carbunkel. He's already scared because of an incorrect belief that they're going to see a real live dinosaur there and Miss Carbunkel's oddness doesn't do anything to help. He tries to rope Snail into his plan to leave as well, but Snail is actually the voice of reason who puts the kibosh on the plan, noting that the bus back doesn't come until well after lunchtime and they need to just have courage and "do this."
  • Security Blanket: Franklin has a favorite blanket that he can't sleep without, though by the third film, he decides his sister's need is greater than his own and gives it to her to comfort her when she's upset. He still hangs on to his stuffed puppy, Sam, though.
  • Series Continuity Error: Otter participates in Franklin's hide and seek game in "Franklin Is Lost" despite having moved away in "Franklin's Bad Day", the episode prior.
  • Shock-and-Switch Ending: One episode is about Franklin trying to get his toddler sister Harriet not to call everything stupid. It seems like she's going to do it again at the end, but she instead says, "This dinner is... yummy".
  • Shout-Out:
    • In Franklin in the Dark, the monsters that come out of Franklin's shell are generic looking, but in the TV series adaptation of the story, Franklin imagines different monsters emerging from his shell. The monsters are Viras, Jiger, Barugon, and Gyaos, all of which come from another series that "coincidentally" involves a Turtle Protagonist...
    • The film title Franklin and the Green Knight may be a reference to the Arthurian legend Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. That story also features a test of character.
    • Little Red Riding Hood is the play that Franklin, Bear, Beaver and Goose perform in "Franklin and the Puppet Play."
    • In Franklin the Photographer, Franklin says d'oh! after being distracted by Bear from photographing a butterfly.
  • Shown Their Work - Again, in Franklin's Magic Christmas. Not only did they used the original, unaltered lyrics for the songs (of which most have already been heavily "sanitized" due to the abovementioned Have a Gay Old Time trope), they even performed the complete 5-stanza version of "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star." (Which is very rare - in most works that feature this song, you'll get up to the second "How I wonder what you are," but no more.)
  • Show Within a Show: The Quest of the Green Knight
  • Sick Episode: Combines this with Halloween Episode where Bear suddenly has a cold and is sneezing on the day of Halloween. Unfortunately, he thought he could make it to the party and the haunted house that night, but he was feeling too sick to go.
  • Single Tear: In Franklin and the Green Knight, Franklin cries a single tear after agreeing when Snail asks him if he was really worried about his parents not having enough time for him once the baby comes.
  • Slice of Life: The basic format, save the films Franklin's Magic Christmas and Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure. Franklin and Friends retains this, the general feel of the show is the original, just done in high-definition CGI.
  • Sliding Scale of Anthropomorphism: The characters on the show generally fall somewhere between Civilized Animal and Funny Animal. They exhibit a lot of human behaviors and in Franklin and the Green Knight, Mrs. Turtle was shown pregnant, rather than Harriet hatching from an egg. However, they also still exhibit a fair few animal behaviors, such as Goose being able to fly (though only in the first film) and the Beaver family building dams. They've also undergone a bit of Anthropomorphic Shift in that they looked much more like animals in the earlier books. Snail is a special case in that he is much smaller than the other characters, whereas most of the characters are pretty much human-sized. Oh, and Franklin has a pet fish and Beaver and Bear both have pet hamsters.
  • The Snack Is More Interesting: A non-food variant. In "Franklin Plays the Game," Skunk, the goalie of the team competing against Franklin's, sits to the side of the goal reading a book. The book is more interesting because goal-keeping isn't needed - Franklin's team never keeps control of the ball long enough for it to matter. "Bear's team ten! Franklin's team zero! Game over!"
  • Snow Means Cold: Heavily employed in Franklin and the Green Knight - one of the characters even says that she wouldn't mind seeing some rain because that at least would be a sign of spring.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: The show's instrumental soundtrack is often surprisingly melancholic-sounding, compared with the show's generally cheery nature.
  • Species Surname: Except in the case of most of the children, it's not just their surname, it's their only name. It's Lamp Shaded in Back to School With Franklin. Miss Koala, calling roll, gets through several of the character names and then refers to Franklin as "Turtle" and Beaver laughs. He tells her that she's Franklin, not "Turtle." She apologizes and asks if there are any other surprises. Everyone just sort of shakes their heads. Once the kids started getting siblings, though, they had to start coming up with other names. Franklin's sister was Harriet, but the other character's siblings still fit the theme, such as Beatrice (Bear's sister) and Kit (Beaver's brother.)
  • Spelling Bee: Miss Koala, the replacement teacher in Back to School with Franklin, decides to hold one on the first day. Beaver wins by remembering that there's an apostrophe in the word "don't," as she had been studying the new year's speller.
  • Spring Is Late:
    • The biggest theme of Franklin and the Green Knight, other than that Franklin's family is expecting a new member. "Wake up, Spring where are you? Wake up! Come on Spring, let's have some fun! ... Spring, come out, now don't be shy. Oh, Springtime, can't you even try?"
    • "Franklin and the Four Seasons" from Franklin and Friends opens with the main characters bemoaning how it's snowy out, the sun hasn't been seen in days and it feels like spring will never come.
  • Start My Own:
    • Franklin's "Turtle Trackers" group in "Franklin Wants a Badge," the various characters' secret clubs in "Franklin's Secret Club" and Franklin's "Turtle Point" in "Franklin's Birthday Party"
    • In "Franklin, the Planner" on Franklin and Friends, the kids all end up doing this, pairing off and starting their own floor plans for a new treefort when it doesn't seem like there's enough room to fit each of their own ideas in the original floor plan. The problem, of course, being that only one treefort can be built and they need something that satisfies everyone. It's Franklin who comes up with the idea for compromise, they can't all have everything they want in the treefort, but each of them can use their best idea and they'll put it all together.
  • Stealth Pun: Two gargoyles named "Gar" and "Goyle" respectively in the Franklin and the Adventures of the Noble Knights stage show.
  • Stock Animal Name: Franklin's pet goldfish is, unsurprisingly, called Goldie.
  • Stock Ness Monster: Michiochi in Franklin's Pond Phantom.
  • Sure, Let's Go with That: In "Franklin and the Thunderstorm," Franklin is nervously staring out the window of the library, which he and his friends have taken refuge in, worried that there's going to be a thunderstorm. Bear asks him if he's sad because their game got rained out and he quickly agrees with this.
  • Surprise Party:
    • Franklin and his friends throw Skunk a party because of a The Moving Experience situation - they think she's moving out of town and want to give her a good-bye party. It turns out she's only moving out of her old home in Woodland, but she appreciates the party nevertheless, as she was truly sad about moving, despite the fact that she wasn't leaving town.
    • The entire plot of the game Franklin: A Birthday Surprise is based around the player helping the cast to plan a surprise party for Franklin's best friend, Bear.
    • In "Franklin's All Ears," Franklin and Snail both become convinced that Franklin's friends are planning one of these after Snail overhears a snippet of conversation and the two come to an incorrect conclusion. (They only wanted to give Franklin his lost soccer ball that they had found.) In the end, they end up having a party anyway because Franklin and Snail gathered up party supplies.
    • "Hurry Up, Franklin!" has Franklin making his way to Bear's surprise party, but he gets distracted by his friends and various things he collects on the way. He helps Snail and him make it to the surprise just in time and gives all of the things he found, including Bear's missing blue cap, to Bear as a birthday gift.
  • Tagalong Kid: Harriet is this if she plays with Franklin and his friends, much to Franklin's annoyance.
  • Talking in Your Sleep:
    • In "Franklin and the Snoring Situation" from Franklin and Friends, the reason Bear keeps falling asleep is because he's been having to share his room with his little sister, Beatrice, while her room is being painted. Apparently Beatrice not only tosses and turns, but once she does fall asleep, she actually sings in her sleep, loudly.
    • In "Franklin and the Snow Dragon," Bear mutters "honey sandwiches" just after falling asleep.
  • Tear-Apart Tug-of-War: The book/episode "Franklin Says Sorry" is where Bear makes a flag for the group's make believe ship, and reluctantly shows Franklin when he notices him sneaking it there. Bear entrusts Franklin with keeping it a secret. Fox bugs Franklin to tell him the secret, promising not to tell, and Franklin does so. But when he and Bear return, we find Fox showing the flag to the others. Bear storms off wanting to take the flag with him but Franklin holds onto it wanting it to stay. It ends up getting ripped, leaving Bear furious with Franklin. After a few unsuccessful attempts to make things right, he finally lures Bear to the treehouse, and learns that the word "sorry" is more important than you think.
  • Tempting Fate: Franklin's Word has Franklin promising to spend time with Harriet because his bike is broken. Then his bike gets repaired. Then he decides that it's okay as long as he doesn't have to play with Messy Squeakalot, Harriet's doll. Guess what happens next.
  • Tertiary Sexual Characteristics: It's sometimes hard to tell Harriet apart from Franklin when she's not wearing her purple bow. Additionally, Mrs. Turtle is usually seen wearing a purple neckband with a jewel at the center. Beaver's cousin Betty is also hard to tell apart from Beaver (though there are some definite physical differences, such as that she has no facial whiskers), so Franklin lends her his scarf so that everyone can recognize the two different beavers on the soccer field.
  • That Cloud Looks Like...:
    • In "Franklin's Cellar," when Franklin realizes that his imagination allows him to see shapes in clouds, he realizes that it can also help him to conquer imaginary monsters in the cellar.
    • "Franklin and Snail's Dream" opens with Franklin and Snail doing this. Snail sees a cloud that looks like a bird and then seeing a real bird flying inspires him to share his dream with Franklin, that he wants to fly.
    • Some of Franklin's friends also do this in "Franklin's All Ears" on Franklin and Friends.
  • That Makes Me Feel Angry: Not as noticeably, or as heavily used as a show like Ni Hao, Kai-Lan, but it is a children's show, so...
  • That Reminds Me Ofa Song: Franklin's Aunt T. likes to make up songs to sing while she's doing her chores and teaches them to Franklin.
  • These Questions Three...: The "Riddle For You All" song in the "Adventures of the Noble Knights" stage show, with Beaver and the Gargoyles
  • Third-Person Person: Little Crow from Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure is this.
  • Time Skip: From the original Franklin animation, to Franklin and Friends. It retains the lighthearted humor, and moral values of the original, but a variable amount of time has passed in between the two series.
  • Title Montage: The original series used this.
    • Series 1's intro exclusively uses footage from both segments of episode 1: "Franklin Plays the Game" and "Franklin Wants a Pet", and the first segment of Episode 2: "Hurry Up Franklin!".
    • Because Otter moved away a couple of episodes in, the opening was edited for the second season with a different set of clips from other Series 1 episodes. The footage is taken from both segments from episode 4-6 ("Franklin Has a Sleepover", "Franklin's Halloween", "Franklin Rides a Bike", "Franklin is Messy", "Franklin Fibs" and "Franklin's Blanket") and the first segments from Episodes 7, 9, and 11 ("Franklin is Bossy", "Franklin's School Play" and "Franklin and the Tooth Fairy"). The same set continued to be used for the remainder of the show's six-season run, despite significant changes that included the addition of Franklin's sister Harriet.
  • Title Theme Tune: "Hey, it's Franklin, coming to your house. Hey, it's Franklin, coming to my house." Franklin and Friends features a version of the original tune with new lyrics, written by the original composer, Bruce Cockburn.
  • Toilet Humor: "Franklin And The Duckling" has Franklin step in the titular duckling's (offscreen) mess.
  • Totally Radical: "Coolio" in Franklin and Friends. Most if not all of the kids use it, and even some of the adults. It seems to be an all-purpose replacement for "cool," at least one character even says "coolio-est."
  • Treasure Map: In Franklin and the Turtle Lake Treasure, Franklin's Aunt Lucy has one that's supposed to indicate the location of the time capsule that Franklin's Granny buried when she was a kid. Aunt Lucy has been searching for the treasure with no success for years— it turns out it was dug up a long time ago and kept by a packrat who didn't realize its significance.
  • Troll: Although she has her issues, Beaver isn't usually overtly mean or trollish. However, she does this to Bear in "Franklin's Party Plans." When Bear sees a plate of muffins and cookies that have been set out in preparation for the party, he asks "Can't I try just one?" She replies "May I try just one?," making him think she's just correcting his grammar, and he smiles sheepishly and asks "May I?" "No way!" she replies. "They're for the party."
  • Two Lines, No Waiting: Usually avoided, but done fairly successfully in Back to School With Franklin. The A story involves Franklin's class and their substitute teacher Miss Koala, while the B story focuses on Franklin's sister Harriet developing a friendship with Beaver's little brother, Kit.
  • T-Word Euphemism: In "Franklin and the Grump," Mr. Groundhog invites Franklin into his home for cocoa after Franklin returns his container of cocoa mix that he had left behind while fleeing from folks that wanted him to either tell him that there's either going to be an early spring or more winter. Franklin promises not to Talk About the Weather, but then notices Mr. Beaver's various meteorological instruments and comments that he "must know a lot about the weather," then covers his mouth and says that he forgot he wasn't supposed to talk about "the W-word." Mr. Beaver, however, says that he loves talking about the weather, it's just that he doesn't like everyone pestering him about Groundhog Day because there are always going to be those who don't like the answer they hear.
  • Two-Timer Date: Happens when Franklin accidentally agrees to attend Bear's baseball game and then Beaver's art show, which are both happening at the same time. He does such a good job of being in two places at once that Bear and Beaver are A.) impressed at how well he did and B.) pleased that he cared enough about them to honor his commitment to both.
  • Truck Driver's Gear Change: Beginning with the second part of the "Brothers and Sisters" song in Franklin and the Green Knight, it shifts up from B-flat major to C major.
  • Tyrant Takes the Helm: In "Franklin the Coach," Beaver becomes the tyranical new coach after Franklin surrenders his substitute coaching role because he's considered to be too wishy-washy and offers the job to Beaver instead. She gets Drill Sergeant Nasty, among other things telling Bear that he can't eat marshmallows because "You are what you eat and I won't have any marshmallows on my team!" The characters all decide Screw This, I'm Outta Here, but Franklin and Beaver eventually resolve the situation by agreeing to share coaching duties, balancing each other's personalities and skills.
  • Unexpectedly Dark Episode: The episode "Franklin and the Fire" is about fire safety. A hardware store is burned down and fire is played very seriously. Franklin's friends talk about how their houses could burn down and all their stuff burning up.
  • Unmanly Secret: Franklin once tried to hide the fact that he was still sleeping with his stuffed dog, Sam, when having a campout with his friends.
  • Unusual Euphemism: Beaver uses "Oh, woodchips!" in "Franklin and the Amazing Stupendous Circus Trick" from Franklin and Friends. Additionally, in "Franklin Changes the Rules," also from Franklin and Friends, Rabbit bursts out with "Oh, carrot sticks!" after Beaver comes up with another burdensome rule for her pirate treasure game that nobody is really inclined to follow.
  • Unwanted Assistance: Snail's not too fond of people helping him out too much, as he is capable of doing a plethora of things all on his own.
  • Vacation Episode: With a twist. Franklin and his family visit a pioneer village and Franklin is not pleased at first. The spry young turtle then finds that he likes pioneer life, while his parents struggle to keep up with the hard work routine. Franklin's Magic Christmas might also count, as the Turtle family goes on a trip to Franklin and Harriets' maternal grandparents' farm.
  • Visual Pun: The "Brothers and Sisters" song has the lyrics "Hey, Franklin, if you get a sister, she'll do the things you do / But when you teach her painting, she'll end up painting you!" and Franklin being covered by the imagined sister in paint. She painted him.
  • The Voiceless: In "Franklin the Hero," Franklin and snail meet their favorite superhero, Dynaroo, though it's unclear if she's the real Dynaroo or just someone who plays a character. In any case, she doesn't say a word.
  • Wasn't That Fun?: In "Big Brother Franklin," when Franklin, Fox and Raccoon are spun off the merry-go-round, Squirrel manages to hang on and his comment is "Let's do that again!"
  • Water Is Dry: After everyone gets caught out in the rain without umbrellas in "Franklin and the Thunderstorm," none of them show even the slightest sign of getting wet. They weren't out in it long, but it was pouring heavily enough that they all should have gotten a good soaking, particularly Franklin and Snail. In fact, when Franklin suggests that maybe he should go home because his mom will be worrying about him, Mrs. Goose says that she'll call everyone's parents to let them know that they're "safe and dry." And, indeed, the next shot shows that they certainly are, and so is the library's floor.
  • We'll See About That: Beaver, in "Franklin and the Trading Cards," regarding an argument over whether Franklin is going to give his Martian Muskrat card to her or Fox
    Beaver: We'll just see about that!
    Fox: Yeah, I guess we will!
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: In Franklin and the Green Knight, while on the quest as the Green Knight and his Squire, Franklin and Snail respond to a cry for help from Mr. Gopher, who has gotten his head stuck in the window opening of his home. They manage to rescue him. As they head back off on the quest, Mr. Gopher shouts after Franklin that he likes his costume, sticking his head through the opening again to do so, and then realizing he's stuck once again. If he shouts again for help, Franklin and Snail do not hear it and for all the viewers know, he could still be stuck that way by the end of the film.
  • When I Was Your Age...: Mr. Turtle had to walk two and a half miles to school and back, even in the rain and the snow. It wasn't uphill both ways, though.
  • Whole-Plot Reference: The stage show Franklin and the Adventures of the Noble Knights seems to be more-or-less a full-plot reference of "Sir Franklin's Squire" from the original Franklin show.
  • Wholesome Crossdresser: On Franklin and Friends, Franklin has no problem with dressing up as his favorite superhero, Dynaroo, despite Dynaroo being a female superhero.
  • Woodland Creatures: The entire cast. The village they live in is even called Woodland.
  • World of Funny Animals: Humans are never seen nor mentioned in the show. That said, it's apparently an Earth populated by funny animals - both Back to School with Franklin and Polar Explorer depict globes that clearly match the Earth's layout.
  • Worthless Treasure Twist: The Franklin and Friends special Polar Explorer features Great Aunt Harriet's special treasure in the Antarctic, which turns out to be an extremely sparkly and picturesque lake that she discovered.
  • Xtreme Kool Letterz: The third season of Franklin and Friends has Aunt T's Karate Klub.
  • You Are Grounded!: Franklin and Bear decide to ground themselves after they get poison ivy rashes after taking a disallowed shortcut and then are caught trying to hide them.
  • You Didn't Ask: In "Franklin and Sam," Franklin tries to hide the fact that he still sleeps with his stuffed dog Sam after his friends and particularly Fox comment that only babies sleep with stuffed toys after Bear's little sister Beatrice gets upset over missing her teddy bear. Finally, while sneaking Sam into their sleepover tent, he finds them all sleeping with stuffed toys. When he asks why they didn't just tell him, Fox's sheepish excuse is "You didn't ask."

Alternative Title(s): Franklin And Friends


Franklin Does Laundry

Source of the page image. In "Franklin in Charge," when Mr. Turtle goes on a trip, Franklin wants to do all the household chores to prove he can be just as responsible as his father. Unfortunately, he accidentally adds in too much washing powder when doing laundry and ends up upside-down on his shell in overflowing soap bubbles.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (2 votes)

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Main / DomesticApplianceDisaster

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