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Recap / HTF - Helping Helps

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Splendid (almost) saved the day!
"Don't forget to stop and smell the roses!"
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Airdate: January 7, 2000

"Helping Helps" is the third episode of the first (internet) season of Happy Tree Friends.

An injured Giggles is walking through the forest with a pair of crutches when the nearby dam suddenly breaks, unleashing flood she cannot escape from. Her scream is heard by Splendid the Flying Squirrel who immediately flies over to help. Right before the flood hits her, the flying squirrel manages to snatch her, saving her life. Unfortunately, when carrying her away, he accidentally decapitates her by flying too close to a tree branch. To avoid trouble, he tries to find a way to cover it. He finds an acorn, then he brings her back home where her mother is sobbing, thinking she has lost her daughter. When he shows Giggles (the acorn with a crudely-drawn face replacing her head) to her mother, she is somehow overjoyed, oblivious to the fact that her daughter is dead. The flying squirrel gives a salute before flying away from the place. Giggles's mother waves goodbye when suddenly the acorn falls off from Giggles's body, squirting blood on her mother.

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"Helping Helps" contains the following:

  • Accidental Murder: Splendid beheads Giggles by mistake.
  • Ambidextrous Sprite: Giggles's bandages switch places between certain shots.
  • Big Dam Plot: The episode kicks off with the forest dam being destroyed.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Splendid saves Giggles just in time from a massive wave of water — only for Giggles's head to get sliced off by a tree branch.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Giggles's mom's first and only appearance.
  • Debut Queue: Splendid's first major appearance.
  • Downer Ending: Splendid kills Giggles by accident and tries to cover it up with a fake head.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: Regarding Splendid:
    • Splendid is introduced with a full title of "Splendid the Flying Squirrel". In a similar manner to Russell, this title is only used in his debut and is never used or referred to again in his later starring role appearances.
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    • Splendid does not hum his own superhero fanfare when he hears trouble in this episode. The only later episode to do this is the TV episode "See What Develops".
    • He has high-pitched, childlike voice in this episode, which can surprise new viewers who are used to his deep voice.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Splendid accidentally killing Giggles and trying to hide it.
  • Establishing Series Moment: With Giggles reappearing again despite being killed off in the first episode she appeared in, this introduces the viewers to the show's tendency of bringing dead main characters back to life in a later episode.
  • Furry Reminder: Splendid is shown biting into an acorn when he hears Giggles's scream.
  • Giant Wall of Watery Doom: Giggles is almost hit by this.
  • Off-Model:
    • Splendid's belly marking is missing when he notices an acorn to use as Giggles's fake head.
    • When he holds up Giggles to her mother, Splendid's skin flaps disappear.
    • Splendid is colored much darker in the DVD version.
  • Off with His Head!: How Giggles dies.
  • Single Tear: Giggles lets out this when she thinks the Giant Wall of Watery Doom is finally getting her.
  • Super Senses: Splendid's super hearing is what made him able to pull a Big Damn Heroes on Giggles.
  • They Killed Kenny Again: Giggles dies.
  • Updated Re-release: One of the early episodes to be part of "Classics Remastered" releases, which rereleases early HTF episodes in HD.
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