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Recap / Star vs. the Forces of Evil S1 E1 "Star Comes to Earth"

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In the magical kingdom of Mewni, crown princess Star Butterfly has just turned fourteen and, as tradition dictates, receives the royal magic wand from her mother. Given that Star is a hyperactive and reckless young girl whose idea of fun includes fighting monsters and taming wild unicorns, they're more than a little worried... and rightly so when Star nearly burns down the kingdom not long after receiving the wand.
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The good news is, Star isn't getting sent to St. Olga's Reform School for Wayward Princesses for this. The bad news is, King and Queen Butterfly are still sending her away until she can learn to be more responsible with her new powers. Where are they sending her, you ask? To the most mundane dimension they can think of... Earth. Meanwhile, a sinister frog-like figure watches Star depart...

With a little encouragement (and a hefty bribe to the principal), Star is enrolled at Echo Creek Academy as a foreign exchange student. Understandably worried about the sort of chaos Star can cause in her new home, the King and Queen request a guide for Star. Principal Skeeves has the perfect person for the job: Marco Diaz, the school's resident "Safe Kid".

Principal Skeeves: I need a responsible, never-take-chances type to keep an eye on her, and who better than you, the Safe Kid?
Marco: WHAT?! No, no, no, I am completely wrong for this! I'm a misunderstood bad-boy!
Principal Skeeves: [pinches Marco's cheek] You're adorable! Now, I'm off to the ice-cream shop. Daddy's getting all 52 flavors!
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With reluctance, Marco shows Star around the school, all the while ranting about (and inadvertently showing off) his reputation as "the Safe Kid". He expresses his desire for more excitement and danger in his life... and Star obliges by turning a butterfly into a giant monster that flies off with a hapless bystander.

Marco: What the heck was that?!
Star: Oops... heh! I thought you wanted a little... "dan-jaaa"!
[beat]
Marco: ...Who are you?
Star: ♪I'm a maaagical princess from another dimension!♪ [summons a rainbow and a horde of cute critters... who flee when the rainbow bursts into flame]
Marco: [stunned] ...Welp, that brings us to the end of our tour! I'm going home now! [walks away awkwardly, then breaks into a run]
Star: [Waves enthusiastically] Bye, new friend! See ya tomorrow! Bye! Bye, new friend! See ya later!
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Marco flees from the crazy girl who insists on calling him "new friend" (and who has just accidentally set the school on fire)... only to find her chatting up his parents when he gets home; it seems the Diaz family will be hosting Star during her stay on Earth.

Mrs. Diaz: Won't it be nice to have Star's upbeat, lively energy around the house?
Marco: ...We could have gotten that from a litter of puppies...
Star: [gasp] I love puppies! [summons a litter of adorable puppies... with destructive laser eyes]

As Marco escorts Star to her room, the sinister figure that's been spying on her reports to his master, the evil (and diminutive) Ludo, who wants to conquer the universe with the power of Star's wand. Knowing that the princess is unguarded on Earth, he prepares his men to strike...

Back on Earth, Star continues to make herself at home by conjuring up some roomier living quarters. Unfortunately, when she tries the same on Marco's bedroom she botches the spell and instead creates a vortex that wrecks Marco's room! Star's attempts to cheer up Marco only lead to her summoning a perpetual rain-cloud, and Marco finally snaps and threatens to move out, falling out a window in the process ("Luckily the cactuses broke my fall...").

Later that night, Star finds Marco squatting outside the local Stop & Slurp, bugging passers-by to get him a refill on his drink ("They won't let me back inside because I'm sooooooggyyy!") She banishes the rain-cloud and apologizes for the havoc she's caused, saying she knows what it's like to have your life unexpectedly change. She's about to leave to find a new home... when Ludo and his minions show up!

Star is ready for a fight... and as it turns out, so is Marco, who happens to know more than a little karate. Between Marco's fighting moves and Star's magic wand, Ludo's minions are savagely beaten and sent into an ignoble retreat. Their friendship rekindled, Marco accepts Star's apology and the two head home, looking forward to more action and excitement together.

Marco: Are there gonna be monsters attacking us all the time?
Star: Yeah, probably.
Marco: Alright! Sounds so dangerous... [stops Star] Woah! Let's cross at the light...
Star: Okay, "wild man"...


Tropes:

  • Ancient Tradition: Why Star's given her magic wand on her fourteenth birthday, even though her parents are painfully aware that she can't control its powers yet.
  • Animals Lack Attributes: The laser puppies have little hearts on their butts beneath their tails.
  • Anything but That!: Star begged her parents to not take her to St. Olga's Reform School for Wayward Princesses.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For:
    • Marco resents being known as the "Safe Kid" and wishes there to be more danger and excitement in his life. When that danger and excitement comes in the guise of Star, he's at first freaked out by all the magic craziness and annoyed with her antics. By the end of the episode, however, he's accepted Star and embraced the excitement that comes with her.
    • More directly, when Marco voices his wish for danger and excitement, Star takes him at his word and mutates the nearest butterfly into a monster which carries off a student.
  • Big "NO!": Star screams one as King and Queen Butterfly are sending her away.
  • Chair Reveal: Evil Overlord Ludo is introduced this way, turning his imposing throne around... and revealing in the process that he's comically short, perched atop a big pile of pillows.
  • Cute Monster Girl: The female monsters in Ludo's Fantasy Sequence are pretty cute, despite having green scales and a third eye.
  • Didn't Think This Through: Star decides to remake Marco's room, but for reasons unknown even to her, includes the word "suck" in her spell. Cue a black hole cleaning his room out.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Marco's behavior in front of the Stop & Slurp comes off as that of a drug addict trying to beg money for another "fix", even though he's just begging for a refill on his drink. It also comes across as an underage person paying people of drinking age to get alcohol for them.
  • Establishing Character Moment: The episode starts with Star sliding down the stair rails, fighting a bunch of monsters barehanded, and then riding into her parents' throne room on a wild unicorn she just tamed.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: The episode title.
  • Foreshadowing: When Marco is first guiding Star through the school, you can see a poster that reads "SPIRIT WEEK! PEP RALLY".
  • Gilligan Cut:
    Star: Don't worry, Mom! I can handle it.
    [Cut to Star slowly backing away as people flee the burning rainbow over their village in the background]
    King and Queen Butterfly: She can't handle it...
  • The Hero's Birthday: Not dwelt upon, but the series starts on Star's fourteenth birthday.
  • I Resemble That Remark!: Marco complains about being stereotyped as "The Safe Kid" as he shows Star around the school, all the while steering her away from minor hazards like a loose tile and a small pile of broken glass.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: After his minions get trounced by Star and Marco, Ludo decides to retreat.
    Star: Want some of this, Ludo?
    Ludo: [sigh] No...
  • Mundane Object Amazement: Star is fascinated by a light switch, thinking it's operated by magic. Later she examines a water fountain, considers it a menace, and tries to maul it to death.
    Star: [to her mother] And you said there was no magic on Earth!
  • Mushroom Samba: Star distracts Ludo's lackey Buff-Frog with a "Jellybean Hallucination Mist".
    Buff-Frog: Woah... what is happening?
  • Never Live It Down: In-universe, how Marco got labeled as the Safe Kid.
    "You wear a helmet in the gym shower one time, and you're labeled for life!"
  • Orcus on His Throne: Averted, when told that Star is unguarded on Earth, Ludo joins his men on the attack.
  • Passing the Torch: As Star points out near the beginning, Queen Moon passes the royal magic wand to her once she turns 14.
  • Personal Raincloud: Trying to cheer Marco up, Star conjures up a miniature sun over his head — and it immediately turns into a raincloud that follows him around.
  • Powers in the First Episode: Star receives her wand and its powers, but is unable to control them.
  • Precious Puppy: Star uses her wand to summon a litter of adorable puppies... that fire Eye Beams everywhere.
  • Rhetorical Question Blunder:
    Star: Ludo! How did you know I was here?
    Ludo: Hee hee hee, wouldn't you like to know?
    Star: [totally serious] Yes, that's why I asked.
    Ludo: Well, Buff-Frog... Hey! I don't have to tell you anything!
  • Sanity Slippage: Marco undergoes this after Star wrecks his bedroom and he moves out, only to end up loitering outside a convenience store.
    Marco: They won't let me back inside because I'm soooooggyyy!
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: Star's parents "enroll" her into Marco's school by giving the Principal a chest full of gold and jewels.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Marco tries to ditch Star twice in the episode. The first time, she ends up at his house anyway. The second time, she tracks him down to apologize.
  • Shamu Fu: Star finishes off the last of Ludo's minions with a "Mega Narwhal Blast".
  • Today, X. Tomorrow, the World!: Ludo wants to conquer Mewni, and then the universe. "And then... actually, the universe should do it".
  • Undead Tax Exemption: Star's parents bribe the principal not to worry about things like documentation.
  • Unrealistic Black Hole: When trying to expand his room like she did her own, Star ends up creating a black hole in the middle of Marco's room instead (and it sucks up one of the eight puppies she summoned earlier, too).
  • We Will Meet Again: Ludo sneers "I'll get you, Star Butter—" but is cut off by the portal closing.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: We never saw what happened with the giant mutant butterfly Star created, or the guy it carried off into the distance.
  • Wingding Eyes: When King and Queen Butterfly offer a chest of jewels in exchange for enrolling Star into Echo Creek Academy, Principal Skeeves gets dollar-bill signs in his eyes.

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