The 43rd episode of the first season of Tiny Toon Adventures and the 43rd episode overall. "Best O' Plucky Duck Day" is, as the name implies, an episode all about Plucky Duck. Come on, it was in his contract.
First Short: "One Minute 'Til Three"
It's almost three o'clock on Friday, and Plucky dreads being called on by the teacher to answer a ridiculously difficult question, Granny, and hopes that the clock will strike three before she does, lest his weekend be ruined by homework assignments. However, the one minute to three begin to feel like hours....
Second Short: "Sticky Fingers Duck"
After hanging out at the arcade, Plucky and Hamton are fresh out of cash and are hungry. Plucky gets the idea to steal a ACME Super-Duper Munch-n-Crunch candy bar (with almonds) from the nearby convenience store. Hamton reluctantly joins Plucky in doing it...but will they actually get away with it?
Third Short: "Duck in the Dark"
While spending the night at Buster's place, Plucky brings a bunch of horror movies he rented with him and spends the better part of the night watching them. Buster insists that watching all of these movies will give Plucky nightmares, but Plucky brushes him off. Plucky goes to bed, and...
This episode provides examples of:
- A Day in the Limelight: For Plucky.
- Credits Gag: Moral of the Story: Plucky's a Jerk
- Deleted Scene: The episode has an alternate title card◊ with the credits replaced by, strangely, a hulk-like monster resembling Plucky.
- Take That!: The opening wraparound throws a small one at DuckTales (1987):Buster: Welcome, toonatics! Today we're presenting three hysterical duck tales!
Plucky: Don't use that word!
Buster: Um, three duck stories? Uh, duck cartoons! That's right, three hysterical duck cartoons!
- Three Shorts
One Minute 'Til Three:
- Animation Bump: This short's animation, mostly done by Glen Kennedy, has a very high amount of drawings used, which is rare in television animation. It's also quite fluid and bouncy.
- Comedic Sociopathy: The students who can't get an answer correctly get assigned ridiculously long papers to write over the weekend. Poor Little Beeper can't even form an intelligible answer.
- One Dialogue, Two Conversations: Plucky inadvertently gives the correct answer to the question Granny asks him when he tells Granny that "It's 2:59! (on the clock)", escaping Granny's brutal homework assignments.
- Sadist Teacher: It's very obviously Played for Laughs, though for an otherwise sweet old lady, Granny sure doesn't mess around when her students don't know the answers to her questions. She immediately pegs them with increasingly long essays each time one of them gets a question wrong, adding to the sense of urgency in Plucky escaping class.
- Throw the Dog a Bone: When Plucky ultimately gets called on and asked a question by Granny with one minute on the clock left, in a panic, Plucky yells "It's 2:59!!!". As it turns out, this was the right answer, and Plucky is free to go home without any papers to write.
Sticky Fingers Duck:
- Acting Unnatural: Hamton and Plucky as they steal the candy bar. It's a wonder that the employee at the store didn't catch them before they leave.
- Broken Aesop: Subverted; see Reality Ensues below.
- Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: Hamton is scared of this happening to he and Plucky when they steal the candy bar. Eventually, Plucky worries about this as well, driving their collective Imagine Spot/Nightmare Sequence and leading to them returning the candy bar to the store.
- Metaphorically True: Hamton and Plucky describing their shoplifting and subsequent guilt-trip as "a nightmare" to the store employee.
- Nightmare Sequence: When neither of them can bring themselves to eat the stolen candy bar, the candy bar suddenly comes to life insisting that Plucky and Hamton eat it. Eventually, it turns into a huge candy bar monster and begins chasing the boys around telling them how they're going to live their lives now that they're criminals. Eventually, the monster just eats them himself, and Hamton and Plucky wake up/snap out of it and make a beeline to the store with the (no longer sentient) candy bar.
- Reality Ensues: You may notice how some kid's shows may show the main character stealing something, only for them to be allowed to keep the stolen object when they return the object to where they stole it from and confess their deed as a reward for their honesty. When he and Hamton return the candy bar to the store, Plucky says that he's expecting this to happen. Not so, the employee present at the store tells the boys that, while he's happy that they were honest enough to return the candy bar, he will still call the police if they come back again.
- Recursive Canon: The arcade game Plucky is shown playing in the arcade features him as the main character.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Shirley is initially with Hamton and Plucky as they walk to the store, but leaves in disgust when Plucky puts shoplifting the ACME Super Super Munch-n-Crunch Candy Bar (with almonds) on the table.
- What Have I Done: By the time Plucky and Hamton leave the store with their ill-gotten candy bar, neither of them can bring themselves to eat it, ultimately leading to them coming clean.
Duck in the Dark:
- Angrish: A peeved Buster can only communicate in angry grunting as he kicks Plucky out at the end of the episode.
- Beware the Nice Ones: The ending of the short has the normally cool-headed Buster going into a near-feral rage over Plucky's Ignored Epiphany and literally throwing Plucky and his movies out of his rabbit hole. It's implied that he is very sleep-deprived from being up so late the night before, so it kind of makes sense.
- Big "NO!": Plucky lets out two consecutive ones just before waking up from his first nightmare.
- Catapult Nightmare: Plucky the first time he wakes up (still in the dream). Averted when he wakes up for real, where Buster simply shakes Plucky awake.
- Deadpan Snarker: Buster gets a good moment when he initially tells Plucky that he'll get nightmares from watching the horror movies:Plucky: Nightmares? Moi? Come on, Buster! Only a total idiot would be scared of these movies!
Buster: I rest my case.
- Dream Within a Dream: At the end of his first nightmare, Plucky wakes up screaming, then wearily goes to Buster's bed for comfort. He's greeted by a giant monster version of Buster that roars at him in rage. Plucky wakes up for real later.
- Everything Explodes Ending: How Plucky's final nightmare ends, by way of Eddie lighting a barrel of gun powder in Buster's basement.
- Eddie Cougar, one of the movie monsters in Plucky's horror movies and the one who torments Plucky in his nightmares, is a clear parody of Freddy Krueger from the A Nightmare on Elm Street movies.
- There's also the Bambi look-a-like who (presumably) becomes one of Eddie's victims in the movie Plucky was watching at the beginning of the short.
- Eye Scream: One of Nightmare!Buster's eyes falls out of its socket as he roars at Plucky.
- Five-Second Foreshadowing: An observant viewer might realize that Plucky is not yet awake the first time he wakes up because Plucky's bed is suddenly no longer in the same room as Buster's like it was when he and Buster were first going to bed.
- Ignored Epiphany: After his terrible nightmares, Plucky is woken up by Buster, who tells Plucky that the horror movies were giving him nightmares...and Plucky goes right back to watching his horror movies, seeming to have learned absolutely nothing. At this point, Buster is so frustrated with Plucky that he kicks Plucky and his movies right out of his rabbit hole.
- Latex Perfection: A shark flawlessly disguised as a human boy in Plucky's nightmares.
- Nightmare Face: Numerous throughout the episode, most notably that of Nightmare!Buster.
- Nightmare Sequence: Needless to say, the horror movies do wind up giving Plucky nightmares. The first one involves Eddie Cougar throwing Plucky into the TV and trapping Plucky in his own horror movies. The second involves Plucky waking up to find Buster turned into a monster and being blown up by Eddie.
- Rage Breaking Point: Buster is already agitated with having to tolerate Plucky watching his horror movies until 3am, but then he absolutely loses it when he discovers that Plucky learned nothing from the nightmares Plucky got from watching them.
- Threatening Shark: During the first nightmare, Plucky finds himself swiming in an unidentified body of water as he floats there, a shark fin begins swimming around him. Plucky recoils in horror as the shark surfaces...but it's not a shark, it's a kid with a pointy hair-do. Plucky is apparently a rubber duck in the kid's bathtub. Plucky sighs in relief....then the kid pulls down a zipper on his head and reveals himself to actually be a hungry shark in disguise that eats Plucky anyway."WAAAAAAAAAAUGH!!!" (CRUNCH!!)
- Trapped in TV Land: The first nightmare opens with Plucky getting trapped in his horror movies by Eddie.
- Voice of the Legion: Eddie Cougar speaks in this sort of voice. (Incidentally, Eddie's voice is the same exact one Charlie Adler uses for Babs' dad in "Dating, Acme Acres Style".)