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Recap / HTF - Shard at Work

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"The glass is always half full!"

Airdate: May 4, 2003

"Shard at Work" is the fourteenth episode of the second (internet) season of Happy Tree Friends.

Handy is trying to change his light bulb despite having no hands. Frustrated at the fact, he tries to grab it with his teeth, but he ends up kicking off his ladder in the process of unscrewing the light bulb, sending his box of spare light bulbs crashing down to the floor. The beaver is still holding on to the light bulb until it cracks, causing its shards to cut his mouth and sending him back down to the floor where his backside lands right at the shards of broken light bulbs. Thankfully, the first-aid kit is close by, but unfortunately, his first step impales his foot right on a glass shard, causing him to hop backwards in pain until he bumps into a table. The fishbowl on it gets launched and falls onto Handy's head, adding another problem. He begins to desperately try to remove it, breaking his cupboard in the process. He bumps into a wall, and with that he finally has an idea of breaking the fishbowl by headbutting the wall several times. Despite various objects falling onto his head and shattering them, the fishbowl remains intact. That was until Handy fully suffocates and a feather gently lands on the fishbowl, comically shattering it. His pet fish remains fine, though, now swimming in a pool of blood in his mouth.


"Shard at Work" contains examples of:

  • Added Alliterative Appeal: "Fun Fish Fact" from the BlurB!.
  • Agony of the Feet: At one point, Handy ends up stepping on a glass shard that points upwards.
  • Ambidextrous Sprite: Handy's tool belt and the cuts on his mouth.
  • Artistic License – Physics:
    • Considering Handy's weight, the light bulb (or socket and part of the ceiling) should have fallen down sooner.
    • No water from the fishbowl gets spilled/leaked out even when it gets launched upside-down.
  • Blood from the Mouth: After getting cuts from the light bulb shards.
  • Blood Is Squicker in Water: Handy's fishbowl water turns red soon after it gets stuck on his head thanks to his mouth injury.
  • Caption Humor: One of the episodes with a BlurB! version.
  • Delayed Reaction: Handy must have a really slow foot reaction if he ends up impaling his foot on a glass shard so easily.
  • Advertisement:
  • Don't Explain the Joke: Courtesy of the BlurB!.
    Never noticed the glove on the ladder
    The glove is funny because it's a Handy episode.
    For the humour impaired: Let me point out, he has no hands!
  • Hope Spot: The first-aid kit. In the process of reaching it, Handy ends up stepping on a glass shard that makes his situation worse. Not that he can actually use the first-aid kit anyway... well, unless it happens Behind the Black.
  • Hurt Foot Hop: Handy ends up hopping backwards after impaling his foot on a glass shard.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: The BlurB!, regarding Handy's first injury:
    talk about a glass jaw! HAHAHAHA
  • Irony: A glove can be seen on the ladder, despite... you know. Lampshaded by the BlurB!.
  • Lightbulb Joke: One of the BlurB! captions.
  • Now That's Using Your Teeth!: Handy attempts this. It works for a bit until the light bulb breaks.
  • Off-Model:
    • Handy has a much smaller tail in this episode.
    • One of Handy's eyes is missing when he is falling.
    • The cuts on his mouth are never consistent in placement and appearance. See Ambidextrous Sprite above.
  • Pun-Based Title: "Hard at work"
  • Recycled Soundtrack: The jingle at the end of the episode is reused from "Snow What? That's What!".
  • Running Gag: Broken glass shards, and the fact that the fishbowl is way tougher than the other glass items. At least, until a random feather lands on it.
    • For the usual Handy Running Gag, he shows his frustrated face after failing to reach the light bulb with his hands.
  • Sincerity Mode: One of the BlurB! captions explains that Warren Graff (Handy's voice actor) nearly destroyed the sound recording equipment when he was recording for the "headbutting Handy" scene.
  • They Killed Kenny Again: Handy dies.
  • The Tooth Hurts: Some of the light bulb shards end up stuck in his teeth.
  • Trauma Conga Line: Handy suffers from horrific glass-related injuries for most of the episode. Made worse by the fishbowl stuck on his head.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Probably because the animators forgot, Handy's injured foot becomes fine again once he starts stumbling around after getting the fishbowl stuck in his head.
  • Updated Re-release: One of the early episodes to be part of "Classics Remastered" releases, which rereleases early HTF episodes in HD.
  • Use Your Head: Handy tries to break the fishbowl on his head by repeatedly slamming his head into the wall. It does not work.
  • invokedWhat Could Have Been: Played for Laughs. According to the BlurB!, Handy's pet fish was supposed to have lines, but it was cut because his accent is too thick. That apparently also includes his own take on the Lightbulb Joke, which is not only ruined by his accent, but also his poor timing.
  • Your Size May Vary: The fishbowl appears to be too small to fit on Handy's head. It ends up being drawn bigger just so it fits.

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