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Recap / The Amazing World of Gumball S3E27 "The Butterfly"

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During recess, Gumball and Darwin watch a butterfly emerge from his chrysalis and decide to set him free, which causes a chain of disastrous events through Elmore.


Tropes:

  • Accidental Marriage: Rocky falls down on one leg with a bagel in his hand in front of Alison, which she mistakes as proposing and accepts.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Rocky tries to run from Alison by jumping over a fence, but comes back with his arm torn off, apparently by a dog.
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  • Beast with a Human Face: The butterfly's face is a series of cut-outs from photographs of a human face (specifically the show's storyboard supervisor, Chuck Klein).
  • Behind the Black: Rocky tries to get away from Alison by hiding when a bus covers the screen.
    Kid, I'm on the same side of the road as you, I saw you hide behind the trash can.
  • Bolivian Army Ending: The episode ends just as a tornado is created in the middle of Elmore and heading toward Elmore Junior High.
  • Bowdlerization: The Turkish version of this episode pixelates all of the butts Darwin sees after he's tricked into seeing Banana Joe's butt underneath a microscope (including the one on Miss Simian's face, which Darwin thinks is an improvement over how she normally looks). In contrast, the Cartoon Network Arabia version removes the entire part with Banana Joe tricking Darwin into looking at his butt under the microscope (with Darwin's vision being plagued by butts as a result) and starts the episode with Miss Simian explaining what the butterfly effect is.
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  • Brick Joke: Hank mentioned that patting his son Bobby on the head sent him into the ground until he came out in China, but Bobby was on the first flight home. As Hank’s detached head bounces off a plane's wing, he sees Bobby in the window and asks him to tell his wife he'll be late.
  • By Wall That Is Holey: Hector falls over onto Sussie's dad, but he isn't crushed because Hector's nostril fell around him.
  • Call-and-Response Song: The Elmore Help Desk song begins with a call and response between Karen who is the desk worker and a series of callers, but then the callers start talking faster than Karen can respond.
    "Good morning, Elmore Help Desk. How can I assist you?"
    "I've just been abandoned by my brand new fiance."
    "I'm gonna need his details. So I can assist you."
    "I know it seems unlikely, but I never got his name..."
    (phone rings)
    "Sorry caller, hold the line!
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  • Creator Cameo: The live-action face pasted on the butterfly is Chuck Klein, the show's storyboard supervisor and a storyboard artist for numerous episodes.
  • Cute Is Evil: Gumball thinks the butterfly is cute (audience members are unlikely to agree given he has a changing photograph of a man's face for his face) and it seems he caused all of this destruction on purpose. No one ever suspects the butterfly, indeed.
  • Disaster Dominoes: The whole episode is based on the butterfly effect being caused by an actual butterfly (though not the trope Butterfly of Doom, because it doesn't involve time travel), causing all sorts of havoc, including people falling over like actual dominoes, and eventually creating a tornado.
  • Does Not Know His Own Strength: Hank and the gray construction worker accidentally crush their coffee mugs when they toast each other. When the butterfly lands on Hank's head, the gray one trying to swat him away results in Hank tearing off the gray man's arms and in turn getting his head torn off and throw into the sky.
  • Funny Background Event: After Penny puts Tobias down for the dance moves he calls "the butterfly effect", he can be seen trying to impress Carmen with it in the background.
  • I Am Not Weasel: Alison angrily corrects Rocky when he calls her an alligator.
  • Insistent Terminology: When Rocky calls Alison "crazy", she insists "I'm eccentric, I'm not mad!"
  • Literal-Minded: Gumball thinks baby-boomers are "babies going 'boom'".
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: 65 characters appear in this episode, beating out other episodes that had a lot of characters in it (whether or not the main or supporting cast was featured) like "The Shell," "The Finale," "The World," "The Extras," and "Christmas."
  • Major Injury Underreaction: Hank is decapitated, but only seems somewhat annoyed. All he tells a help desk is that "An accident has left me very widely spread." and that his face itches.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: Several people fighting for a $20 bill floating in the wind is shown in slow motion set to gentle music.
  • Orifice Invasion: As Richard eats a hotdog, strong winds end up shoving it entirely up his nose.
  • Rage Quit: Karen gets too many complaints at once while working a help desk, so she hangs up, quits work for that day, and throws her desk out the window.
  • Reality Changing Miniature: When Charlie bumps into a weather map on a television, the cloud symbol flips over and turns into a tornado symbol, causing an actual tornado.
  • Reduced to Ratburgers: Alison is seen feeding crows so she can eat them, and said she'd been living in a van and subsisting on "squirrels and rust".
  • Screaming at Squick: Once Darwin finds out the thing he'd been staring at in the microscope is Banana Joe's asscrack, he starts screaming uncontrollably and seeing butts everywhere, though he finds the sight of Miss Simian's face replaced with a butt an improvement over how she normally looks.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: The butterfly was kept in his jar to keep him from causing a disaster. Judging by his pleased reaction at the episode's end, the thing meant to do all of this.
  • Something Completely Different: In a similar vein to "The Extras," this episode focuses more on the people of Elmore more than it does Gumball and Darwin. Unlike "The Extras", the events depicted are loosely connected and Gumball and Darwin actually had a hand in causing them.
  • Split-Screen Phone Call: The Elmore help desk starts as a split screen call between two people, but all the people who'd experienced misfortune in the episode keep calling in until it ends up as a six-way conversation.
  • Traitor Shot: As the butterfly comes back to Gumball at episode's end and he questions why anyone thinks he could cause anything bad, the butterfly gets a smug grin and starts darting his eyes back and forth.

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