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Recap / Arthur S 1 E 20 Arthurs Almost Boring Day The Half Baked Sale

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Airdate: November 1, 1996

To the frustration of the students, Mr. Ratburn assigns his class a report on how they spend their Saturday. The students discuss what they could possibly do, and all make plans on what they will spend their next day doing. Unfortunately, said day happens to very rainy. Arthur ends up confined in his house where he must succumb to D.W.'s demands that he play with her. Every attempt to do so goes awry in some way. When Mr. and Mrs. Read finally decide they've had enough, they send the two over to Grandma Thora's, further frustrating Arthur. She asks for help on cleaning her attic, which at first brings about complaints, but soon Arthur and D.W. find a treasure trove of old family memories, and a few old home videos of theirs. The next day at school, everyone gives their reports, but due to the stormy weather, nobody seems to report on anything interesting. That is, until Arthur presents his, where he brings Grandma Thora in and shows the class his old family memories. The kids all enjoy it, leaving Arthur satisfied on his report's turnout after all.


Arthur's Almost Boring Day contains examples of:

  • Ahem: D.W. gives several very loud ones in irritation when she wants Arthur to read to him.
  • Boredom Montage: Subverted. Instead of one character doing the same thing over and over, it's the entire class presenting practically identical reports about staying inside all day and watching wrestling. To quote Francine, "it's like living through the most boring day in history twice!"
  • Catch Your Death of Cold: Subverted. Mr. and Mrs. Read make Arthur and D.W. walk to Grandma Thora's in the rainstorm, but neither suffer any ill effects from it.
  • Genre Savvy: At least, for someone D.W.'s age, anyway.
    Arthur: 'Once upon a time-'
    D.W.: Let me guess. 'They live happily ever after,' right?
    Arthur: (turns to the end and nods to confirm it)
    D.W.: I knew it. BOOOOOOORING.
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  • Jaw Drop: When Arthur overhears the weatherman equating the rain storm to a monsoon.
  • Last-Second Word Swap: "I was just getting started on it when your dad begged me to- umm, when I decided to invite you over!"
  • Literal-Minded: D.W. complains that Arthur is playing Weasal Rally all wrong because he's "not having fun" like the kid on the box is.
  • Overly Long Gag: Brain's rendition of "Rain Rain, Go Away" is this.
    Brain: Rain, rain, go away...evaporate and recondense combining with vapor molecules in cumulonimbus clouds to return in a low pressure weather front, on a more appropriate occasion, hey hey!
  • Rain, Rain, Go Away: The cold opening has just about all of Arthur's classmates singing this exact song. Of course, it's the premise of the episode too.
  • Suddenly SHOUTING!: "A stick from the park where you PROMISED TO TAKE ME TODAY!"
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  • Tempting Fate: Buster rhetorically asks Arthur how long it could possibly rain for. Cue the weatherman likening the storm to a monsoon.

Arthur and D.W. love Grandma Thora; she's possibly the coolest grandmother you could ever hope for. Well, for the most part; there's only one thing you never want to hear her say, that she's prepared a meal for you. As it turns out, Thora is a terrible cook. That's a big problem, because soon is the PTA fundraiser, and worse yet, she's volunteered to help with the bake sale. Arthur and D.W. panic, wondering what to do; Buster suggests they tell the truth, but Arthur's hesitancy gets the better of him. Soon, it becomes apparent they won't be able to stop her from making cookies for the sale. Arthur conjures up a plan to pay for all the cookies with his own money and hide them in the janitor's closet. This backfires, as Mr. Morris slips on the cookies and falls. When Thora walks out of the nurse's office to see how Mr. Morris is doing, she asks how her cookies got in there; clearly cornered, Arthur and D.W. have no choice but to confess why they did it. While she is torn up over what she has been told, she also accepts that it was for the best, and the kids reassure her that she's great at many other things, and they still love her in spite of her flaw.

The Half-Baked Sale provides examples of:

  • Compressed Vice: Thora, in this episode. Her being a Lethal Chef was nowhere mentioned in any other episode, and in fact it sticks out quite badly because in other episodes such as "Arthur's Chicken Pox", she's shown to cook just fine and nobody bats an eye. It was clearly done for the sake of the episode's moral.
  • Didn't Think This Through: Arthur, on two accounts. First, he didn't think through that Thora might be suspicious of him when he reported the news that the cookies all sold so quickly. Second, he especially didn't think through that hiding the cookies in the dark closet may potentially lead to injury.
  • Lethal Chef: Thora, in this episode and only this one (see Compressed Vice).
  • Wham Line: "Sarah MacGrady, tell me the truth... am I a bad cook?"


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