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Western Animation / Dragon Tales

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"Let's all go to Dragon Land!"note 

"I wish, I wish, with all my heart,
To fly with dragons, in a land apart!"

Dragon Tales was an animated Sesame Workshop and Columbia TriStar/Sony Pictures show on PBS Kids. Its original run lasted from 1999 to 2005. Repeats were also seen on PBSKids Sprout, but are no longer being broadcast (it was taken off the air on August 31, 2010), though a number of DVD releases remain available. In early August 2022, the first two seasons of the program were added on Amazon Prime. Notably, the premiere episode appears to be sourced from a PBS master and includes promos and the Dragon Tunes segment. Additionally, the second episode, despite being listed as "To Kingdom Come & Goodbye Little Caterpoozle" is actually a 70 minute copy of the Adventures in Dragon Land DVD. Later in the month, the third season was added as well.

Max and Emmy find a magical dragon scale upon moving into their new home. By reciting an engraved rhyme, the magic sends them to Dragon Land, where they meet and play with their new magical dragon friends: Ord, Cassie, Zak and Wheezie (the latter two are a two-headed dragon). They are also often accompanied by the Cool Old Guy dragon Quetzal, and in later seasons, they are joined by their friend Enrique, a boy of Emmy's age who moves next door from Colombia.

Not to be confused with Dragon Tails, although coincidentally both were released in the same year (and both ended/stopped reruns in the same year - 2010)

Dragon Tales provides examples of:

  • Actually Pretty Funny: In "Emmy's Dream House," Emmy is bossing everyone around when it comes to building the treehouse. Zak and Wheezie try to theme the steps in black and white like a piano, but she dumps red paint on them and it also gets on Zak and Wheezie's toes. Wheezie tells her that they didn't like the way she re-painted their steps. "Or our toenails!" comments Zak, lifting his foot, though Wheezie comments "Actually, I thought the toenails were kinda pretty."
  • Aesop Amnesia: Despite having learned that being short has advantages in "A Tall Tale", Max is back to being tired of his small size in "One Big Wish". After growing to gigantic size, he learns again that being big isn't everything and wishes to return to his normal height.
  • Amazing Technicolor Wildlife: The dragons come in all colors of the rainbow.
  • "Anger Is Healthy" Aesop: In "No Hitter", Max punches Emmy in the arm when she won't let him pitch and later kicks Ord's tail out of rage when he accidentally catches a ball he wanted to catch himself. Quetzal tells him that he can be angry, but he must always use his words rather than his fists to deal with a problem.
  • Animation Bump: Some episodes such as "The Fury is Out on this One" and "Bully for You" have much more expressive and less stiff animation than most of the others, which makes it even more glaring when the Stock Footage mentioned below is used.
  • Annoying Laugh: Mr. Pop's laugh in "Wheezie's Last Laugh", which is clearly played to emphasize his character's taunting tendencies, hoo hoo huff, hoo hoo huff!
  • Anti-Sneeze Finger: The group stops Ord from sneezing as they fly through the Dandelion Forest by plugging his nose. In a rare subversion of the trope, they are successful.
  • Anthropomorphic Personification: The Grudge in "The Grudge Won't Budge" and the Fury in "The Fury is Out on this One".
  • Anything but That!: One of the very few things Wheezie h-a-a-tes; "No no no! Anything but the...Alone Cone!. For context, the Alone Cone is a special cone that a two-headed dragon uses when one head (Zak) doesn't want to listen to the other (Wheezie).
  • Arbitrary Skepticism:** In one episode, Ord is reminded that "monsters aren't real" to stop him from being afraid of the dark. This despite the show's setting having many creatures that could easily be described as monsters—not the least of which are the titular dragons themselves!
    • In "My Way or Snow Way," when Max tells Emmy that he met a talking snowman, Chilly, she immediately tells him to stop exaggerating. This is despite the fact of talking dragons and more generally them having met any number of other sentient talking fantastical creatures in Dragon Land.
  • Are We There Yet?:
    • In "Making It Fun," Zak gripes "Are we there yet?" after the gang spends a really long time painting a path for a race and starts to get bored. Cassie gets the group back on track by having them all take a "fun break" playing on bouncy mushrooms.
    • In "The Forest of Darkness," Ord, scared of the dark, asks if the question as the group searches the Forest of Darkness for Half-Moon Rock. Zak asks him if he sees it yet and he admits that he doesn't, so Zak replies that they aren't there yet.
  • Argument of Contradictions
    • In "Tails You Lose," Zak is conducting a game of freeze dance with the song "The Wings on the Dragon," a variation of "The Wheels on the Bus." He conducts and sings the song very slowly, leading Wheezie complain that fast music is better for the game. Zak responds "Is not," she says "Is too!" and they're off, until Wheezie snatches the baton and conducts the game to a fast version of the song.
    • In "No Hitter", Max and Emmy have one when Emmy is pitching instead of Max, which he clearly asked her before leaving for Dragon Land, leading him to hit her in anger.
    • In "Remember the Pillow Fort," Max and Ord have one over whether red or purple is a better color, descending into "Is not!" Is too!" territory. Zak and Wheezie make into a song.
  • Art Evolution:
    • While the first season was animated with hand-painted cels, the second season switched to digital ink-and-paint.
    • The animation of Season Three is noticeably higher quality than the second due to the three year gap in production.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: In "One Big Wish," Max is tired of being smaller than Emmy and his dragon friends and unable to do certain things. He makes a wish on a wishing well to grow bigger, but doesn't specify a limit. This is what eventually results. He ends up even taller than the parents of the dragon friends, which is quite something, as those characters are so tall they're normally shown on-screen from about the middle of the belly down because they just wouldn't fit in a normal frame.
  • Awakening the Sleeping Giant: "The Giant of Nod" centers around this. Then it turns out the giant is hardly giant to the main cast. "Staying Within The Lines" also has a sleeping giant, that the group accidentally wakes when trying to re-color Dragon Land.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning: Princess Kadoodle.
  • Bad Mood as an Excuse: In "Itching for a Cure," Zak, Wheezie and Enrique are searching for honey as part of a cure for Mungus the giant's itchy rash. They encounter a bee who doesn't want to share his honey. When they try to get him to change his mind, he tells them he's in a bad mood. They finally get the honey by putting him in a good mood by telling a joke that gets him to laugh.
  • Bait-and-Switch: The ending of "The Fury Is Out On This One" has this. As the gang play another game of Dragon Tag, Max is it and trips over a log which causes him to start complaining again. As he counts down, he reveals that he was fooling everyone and able to tag Emmy because she got too close to him. She jokingly pretends to get mad before running to tag the others.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For:
    • In "To Kingdom Come", Ord finds a wish shell and uses it to wish for a new hat that look just like Max's after Max shares his hat with him. This gets the attention of his friends, who find out about the wish shell and want to use it to wish for things of their own.note  Not wanting to share the wish shell, Ord wishes that he was somewhere where he wouldn't have to share it with anyone, causing the wish shell to take him to Kingdom Come. Inside Kindgom Come, Monsieur Marmadune tells Ord that he can do whatever he wants, but he can never leave. This is bad news for Ord, who wants to be back at the beach party, so he wishes his friends were with him, resulting in the wish shell taking them to Kingdom Come. Zak calls Ord out for this, saying he could have wished himself back home instead of wishing them all to Kingdom Come. When Ord tries to wish him and his friends back home, the shell breaks. Cassie tells him this is because he only gets three wishes from a wish shell, and he used them all up.
    • Along with "Size doesn't matter", this is the aesop for "One Big Wish". Tired of being smaller than Emmy and the dragon friends, Max makes a wish on a wishing well to grow bigger. It works, but because he didn't specify a size limit, he keeps growing bigger... and bigger... and bigger... and bigger...
    • Emmy's wish for Max to act more like her summons the CopyCat, Meow, whose licks cause Max to mimic Emmy's personality and idolize her. She finds his acting this way to be extremely annoying and immediately comes to regret wishing for it.
  • Be Yourself
  • Big Eater: Ord has a lot of snacks in his pouch.
  • Big Storm Episode: The episode "Stormy Weather" deals with the group helping Ord get over his fear of thunder.
  • Bilingual Bonus: Because everything is better bilingual.
  • Birthday Episode: "Ord's Unhappy Birthday" in the first season and "Feliz Cumpleanos, Enrique" in the third season.
  • Blanket Fort: The pillow fort variant is actually key to the plot in "Remember the Pillow Fort." Max and Ord agree to build one together, but then get into an argument over what color the pillows should be.
  • Blind Without 'Em: While the point-of-view shots show fuzzy nearsightedness, Eunice the unicorn (a flying unicorn, or alicorn, actually) is apparently so blind without her glasses that when Max and Emmy arrive, she addresses dragonberry bushes before turning to them. Then, when she actually sees Max, she thinks at first that he's a dragon and not a human. Later on, when Max asks her to describe her glasses, Eunice, who is looking at Zak & Wheezie, describes what they look like to her!
  • Bookends: Each episode starts and ends in Emmy and Max's playroom. There are, however, a few episodes where they don't return home ("The Fury Is Out On This One", "Eggs Over Easy" and "It Happened One Nightmare", to be examples).
  • Borrowed Catch Phrase: Max and Emmy borrow Wheezie's "LOoOoOoOve it!" at the end of the first episode when asked their opinion on their new house.
  • Breath Weapon: Fire breath is sometimes used as a weapon, but more often like a tool in the series.
  • Broken Aesop: One episode features Cassie showing off her new anthropomorphic crayon that is capable of bringing anything you draw with it to life. She has to learn to share it with everyone else, even if it means she gets no time with it. The problem is that it never once occurs to her to draw more crayons. That's not what makes it this trope though; what does is that the episode very clearly demonstrates this as being a possible solution when the crayon draws clones of himself to help clean a mess.
  • The Bully: Spike is one in "Bully for You," until the problem is solved. Also, "Teasing is Not Pleasing" is about a dragon-basketball team that teases Emmy.
  • Butt-Monkey: Zak. It's very subtle, but watch the series carefully and you'll catch all sorts of little abuses happening to him.
    • The Doodle Fairy winds up on the receiving end of Ord's antics in "A Picture's Worth a Thousand Words". First Ord accidentally inhales her and then sneezes her out. Then he blows her away with another sneeze. Finally, he nearly drops a piece of paper on her.
    • Sometimes the Doodle Fairy becomes the butt of the entire group's antics.
  • Camera Abuse: In "Pigment Of Your Imagination", when the dandelions Max gets out cause Ord to sneeze once more, he spills all the paint all over the camera screen.
    • At the end of "Staying Within the Lines", Max scribbles all over the screen after saying that he's the "scribbliest sribbler around".
  • Casting Gag: In the Japanese dub, Cassie is voiced by Rie Tanaka, who already voiced girls associated with the color pink (and still is). The same goes as well with her English voice actress as well, albeit only related with Lacus.
  • Catchphrase: "Definitely!" for Emmy, "LOoOoOoOve it!" for Wheezie, among others. Alternatively for Wheezie: "Ooh, I just love X. It's so... X-y!"
  • Character Development: Ord was at first shown to be a coward, but later became braver. This included him getting over his fear of thunder.
  • Childish Pillow Fight: There's one in "The Big Sleepover," though it doesn't last long at first because Cassie is missing her family too much to get into it. After the solution is devised of her staying for a "half sleepover," she initiates a new one, surprising everyone.
  • Circling Birdies: Zak gets spinning stars around his head around the beginning of "Calling Dr. Zak" after he and Wheezie shoot out of their knuckerhole really fast and land right on their bottom.
  • The Clan: Cassie. She's got a bigger family than me and you. Her brothers and sisters total seventy-two.
  • Clueless Aesop: Occasionally. See Inspirationally Disadvantaged immediately below. There was also a very odd episode where Wheezie must learn patience and to wait her turn for a roller coaster. Thing is, one of the reasons humans enjoy and built roller coasters is because they are lacking in the wings department.
  • Compressed Vice: Usually, the show can get away with averting this (generally the morals are assigned to characters it would fit the best on, and when it won't, they typically introduce a side character to take care of it), but when it happens, it shows. Probably the worst example is "Tails You Lose" — Emmy, clean out of nowhere, gains a Sore Loser trait with no buildup or explanation at the beginning of the episode. She had never shown any signs of this in any previous episode, even when she did lose a game.
  • "Could Have Avoided This!" Plot:
    • One episode sees Zak empty everything out of Wheezy's messy half of the room, including her personal treasures that he just sees as more of her usual junk. She takes it about as well as you'd expect, and everybody must go to the Dragon Dump to retrieve her belongings, which Zak takes about as well as you'd expect.
    • The gang agrees to help Quetzal by taking his twin brother Fernando's jumping beans back home to him. The very alive, very energetic jumping beans get loose and the gang must resort to all manner of trickery to get them back. In the end we find out what their favorite thing is: Dragonberry cupcakes, something Quetzal neglected to mention earlier on.
    • Emmy lampshades in one episode that Ord's refusal to share a magic wishing shell got everyone trapped in Kingdom Come.
    Emmy: If you'd shared the Wish Shell in the first place, Ord, we definitely wouldn't be in this mess!
    • For that matter, Zak reminds Ord that he could have just wished to leave Kingdom Come instead of wishing for everyone to be there with him.
  • Cross-Referenced Titles: The first episode is called "To Fly with Dragons;" Lorca and Enrique debut in "A New Friend" and "To Fly with a New Friend," respectively.
  • Crying a River: In "The Forest of Darkness" Ord turns invisible and starts to cry Tears of Fear when he decides he can't make it through the forest. Emmy then sees a river flowing in front of them and realize it's coming from Ord's tears. She tells Ord he needs to stop before he washes all of Dragon Land away.
  • Cuddle Bug: Ord often tends to give Max and Emmy a big hug when they arrive in Dragon Land, much to their chagrin, as he's much bigger than them and tends to squish them a bit.
  • Cute Giant:
    • Pooky, an adorable giant who just wants to play with her friends.
  • Delightful Dragon: The main dragons seem to be the size of adults compared to the kids, and are all super friendly to the kids who visit them.
  • Diegetic Soundtrack Usage: In "Le Dia Del Maestro," Enrique sings a portion of the "Clap" song from the "Dragon Tunes," the melody of which is used for the song for Quetzal's Teacher Day (Le Dia Del Maestro.)
  • Didn't Think This Through: In one episode, the gang unwisely enters an unusually moist cave in search of their ball while playing Dragon Ball, not raising any alarm at its unusual nature. Only Cassie has enough sense not to enter, after which her friends are revealed to have been swallowed by a sleeping dragonocerous. Unsure of how to escape, they try numerous tactics to try to force him to open his mouth, even ordering Cassie to try several hair-brained schemes to coax him into opening up. The last of which is ordering her to drop a rock on his foot to make him scream. Cassie immediately points out that this would only provoke him into running away, to which they order her again to do it. Luckily for everyone, Cassie chooses to listen to her own instinct and tickles the creature into opening his mouth, rescuing everybody and preventing a worse outcome.
  • Dinosaurs Are Dragons: The book release Dinosaurs and Dragons takes this and plays it for all that it's worth. Max gets a dinosaur book and takes it to Dragon Land to show Ord, saying that he wishes he could find a dinosaur, but there aren't any back home. Then, while searching for Ord's ball, he and Ord find an egg and Max wonders if it could be a dinosaur egg, though Ord says it looks like a dragon egg to him. Then, the egg hatches and Max says that the creature that emerged from it is a dinosaur, saying that the bumps on its back look just like the ones on the Stegosaurus in his book. He then sees that Ord has ones just like that and realizes that Ord also looks kind of like a Stegosaurus. They find other similar features and Max begins to wonder if there's a way to test whether or not it's really a dinosaur. He thinks that if it's a dragon, it should be able to breathe fire, but when it only burps bubbles, Ord points out that he couldn't breathe fire when he was a baby either. Finally, the creature's mother shows it up. It is indeed, a dragon, and as she gives her son a hug, Max sees the wings on the baby's back and realizes that this is how you can tell a dragon from a dinosaur. When the mother mentions that she doesn't yet have a name for a baby, Max suggests naming him "Rex" after the Tyrannosaurus rex in his book, and the mother agrees. Max giggles "So he is a little bit of a dinosaur after all."
  • Dog Walks You: Zak and Wheezie go through this with their pet "boinger," Slurpy, in "Wheezie's Hairball." The thing is basically a big puppy bundle of energy that they haven't quite learned how to control yet.
  • Dragon Rider:
    • Emmy and Max get to ride on the dragons at least Once an Episode.
    • Zak and Wheezie usually don't have anybody to ride them, at least until Enrique comes around. Played for laughs when he is introduced — he thinks that he's about to ride Zak and Wheezie like a horse, not realizing they're about to get airborne.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: Most of the main dragon characters go through different voices in the season 1 episode "The Forest of Darkness" (which was paired with the pilot "To Fly with Dragons"), except for Wheezie who sounded just about the same as she always has. Apart from this, Cassie's voice was much more natural and less squeaky, Ord's voice was much lighter and less heavy, Quetzal sounded much deeper, and Zak's voice was higher and rather wimpy-sounding.
  • Eating Contest: Ord enters a pie-eating one in "Dragon Drop", but he practices so much he's too bloated when it's time to compete.
  • Edutainment Show: Generally of the pro-social values or personal growth type, i.e. learning to be a good sport, overcoming a fear of the dark, etc. However, the show also taught a lot about things like colors, counting, music and shapes.
  • Emotion Eater: The Fury in "The Fury Is Out On This One" seems to feed on the anger of whoever releases him. He gets bigger every time he sees said person angry, and shrinks only when they calm down.
  • Establishing Shot: Almost every episode begins with a street view of Max and Emmy's house. It appears to be in the southern United States, with a Mexican architectural design and palm trees. This outside view and the interior of the kids' playroom is all we ever see of the human world, save for a few small peeks of the hallway when somebody opens the door to the playroom.
  • Everyone Meets Everyone: The first episode has Emmy and Max moving to their new house, discovering the magic dragon scale, traveling to Dragon Land for the first time, and meeting their dragon friends.
  • Evil Egg Eater: Cyrus the Slinky Serpent is the only recurring antagonist in the show, and both times he appears, he tries to steal eggs to eat.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin:
    • Kingdom Come. Once you come to Kingdom Come, you can never leave again, unless you can bargain with the owner to share the key to the front gate.
    • The "lost forever hole." If something falls into this hole, it really is lost forever. Gone, finito, kaput, no hope of recovery. Unfortunately for Ord he accidentally drops his favorite blanket into it.
    • The Forest of Darkness is a deep forest and it is, well, very dark. Somehow, the latter part comes as a shock to Ord, even though he's told that he's going into the Forest of Darkness.
    • Meow, the Copy Cat, can cause someone to copy another person.
  • Exact Words:
  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!:"Small Time" Emmy and Max are shrunken by Shrinking Violets (as in, literal violets that shrink anything they touch when in bloom) just before the dragons arrive. The dragons are confused about only finding the kids' backpacks right by the flowerbeds. They realize what happened when Wheezie finds Emmy's kickball that also shrunk.
    Cassie: It's kinda funny Emmy and Max aren't here yet. They always come when we call for them.
    Ord: That's weird. You wouldn't think they'd only send her backpack. (holds up Emmy's backpack)
    Zak: Huh? How come Emmy's backpack is here?
    Wheezie: And Emmy isn't?
    Cassie: Where'd you find that, Ord?
    Ord: Right beside these flowers.
    Cassie: Careful, Ord, those are shrinking violets. When they bloom, they shrink anything they touch!
    Ord: (pulling his finger away) Oh!
    Wheezie: Hey, what's this? (picks up the shrunken kickball) I found a marble that looks like a dragon ball.
    Cassie: Say, that looks just like Emmy's kickball. It must've shrunk. [gasps] What if Max and Emmy touched the Shrinking Violets?
    Zak: Well, then they'd shrink down to teeny, tiny... OH, NO! They shrunk!
  • Expressive Hair: Scales, actually, but the principal is still there. The dragons' "hair" which are actually longer and larger flexible scales on their heads sometimes acts like this. For example, when Zak steps on a Spiny Pine, his head scales perk up in response to the pain.
  • The Faceless: The dragon parents, such as those of Ord and Cassie, make appearances in some episodes; however, their faces are never shown and they are only viewed from the neck down.
  • Face Palm: Zak does this in "Knot a Problem" when Wheezie asks who she can be with when they go to search for the missing pony, Winnie, and Zak indicates himself, then Wheezie acts like she got a brainwave and says she can be with him.
  • Faeries Don't Believe in Humans, Either: Before meeting Emmy and Max, Ord and Cassie had only seen kids in fairy tales. Later, Spike didn't know what Emmy and Max were until Cassie told him they're children.
  • Fantastic Flora: All of the characters loved the dragonberries, though Ord was definitely the biggest fan. Also, Dragon Land is loaded with unusual plants in general— the third season story "A Small Victory" features all of the main characters (and guest Lorca) searching for unusual flowers.
  • Fear of Thunder: Poor Ord...overcoming this was part of his Character Development.
  • Feud Episode:
    • Max and Ord begin fighting with each other about which color to use for the castles they were making whilst pretending to be kings of their pillow forts. Eventually, they lament about how they're going to stop fighting. In the end, they solve the problem by combining their preferred colors to make one big castle.
    • Also, in "Tails You Lose," Emmy actually wishes herself back home for a while after getting into an argument.
  • First Snow: Having lived in Colombia, Enrique has never seen snow before except in books or on television. Super Snow Day is about Max and Emmy taking him to Dragon Land to experience snow for the first time at Snowy Summit.
  • Flight: The dragons can fly - what makes it this power is that their wings are tiny in proportion to their bodies and obviously couldn't propel them on their own. A glimmer and sound effect are used whenever they're flying to indicate that the flight is also being powered by magic.
  • Floating in a Bubble: Ord in one episode, after he overshoots his use of bubble soap. In order to get him out, the others have to freeze the bubble by heading to the coldest part of Dragon Land.
    Ord: (shivering) It's freezing!
    Everyone else: Good!
  • Forgot I Could Fly: Whenever the gang is in a situation where they are secluded somewhere, one of them usually remembers that they can simply fly out, which is why the writers create some obstacle that prevents them from this, such as heavy rock-like clouds "To Kingdom Come" and thick tree branches in "Puzzle Wood".
  • Forgotten Birthday: "Ord's Unhappy Birthday". Jaw Drop when his friends surprise him.
  • Forgiveness: In the episode "The Grudge Won't Budge", Zak is mad at Wheezie for breaking his snoot flute. His anger and unwillingness to forgive is represented by a furry Grudge that actually clings on to him and won't go away until he can bring himself to forgive Wheezie. The Grudge talks to him in a wheedling voice, encouraging him to hold on to his anger and feelings of having been wronged.
  • Four-Fingered Hands: On the dragons. The humans each have five fingers on their hands.
  • Freakiness Shame: In one episode, the gang meets Priscilla, a dragon who is embarrassed by her wings, which are several times the size of the others'.
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: In "Flip Flop", a statue causes Zak and Wheezie to switch personalities.
  • Free-Range Children: Subverted, averted, and played straight, with even frequency.
  • Friendship Song: The show two of these for its "Dragon Tunes" interstitial segments. Both were created for the show's third season and second music album, More Dragon Tunes. The first is "Friends," which is a fairly standard friendship song, advocating the joys of friendship and making a friend. "Your sister or your brother, and so you'll discover, anybody can be your friend!" The second is called "When You Make a New Friend" and is in celebration of Enrique, the new human co-lead added for the third season. "When you make a new friend / It's like starting over again / To the rainbow's end, oh what a joy friends can be!"
  • Game Show Tropes: "Do Not Pass Gnome" featured several of these, as the premise was a game of Simon Says hosted by Simon the gnome, who stylized himself as a game show host. This being a kids show, a lot of this was Lighter and Softer stuff compared to traditional game showsnote .
    • All or Nothing: Several times, the group is booted back to start for doing something when "Simon Says" wasn't used.
    • Big Win Sirens / Losing Horns: Less dramatic versions of both are used whenever the group either follows a "Simon Says" instruction properly, or messing up by doing something when Simon didn't say "Simon Says."
    • Bonus Round: The game starts off slow, but Simon eventually starts mixing in stuff like an elevated level in which the more the group does right, the further they get to slide at the end, the end of the bonus round happening when one of them messes up.
    • Game Show Host: Simon has down both the voice and the patter. He also has a snappy suit, bowtie and nice hat.
      • Carried by the Host: At its core, it's really just a game of Simon Says, but boy does Simon sell it.
  • Gentle Giant:
    • Mungus, fortunately for the True Companions.
    • There's also that unnamed troll like Giant who is also quite gentle.
    • The Giant of Nod also counts, as he is only trying to protect his little people.
    • A subtle example: Cassie has a massive number of siblings—72 siblings, actually! Exactly how often were Cassie's parents, um, madly in love with each other that they had that many babies?
  • Giant's Droplet, Human's Shower: There is one straight example and one downplayed example.
    • Played straight in "One Big Wish", Max is tired of being small and makes a wish in a wishing well to become big. Unfortunately, the wish works too well and Max eventually grows to twice Sid Sycamore's height. When Max accidentally breaks the baseball bats, he cries in frustration. Ord opens an umbrella to shield himself and the dragons from Max's tears.
    • Downplayed with Ord. He's not a giant per se (though his parents definitely are), but he's the biggest of his friends. In "The Forest of Darkness", he's too nervous to get through the titular forest and turns invisible while crying Tears of Fear. He's quickly found when the others find a river. Then it's revealed the "river" is actually Ord's tears. Emmy even comments that Ord's going to flood Dragon Land if he keeps this up.
  • Gigantic Adults, Tiny Babies: Most of the dragons sizes range from small to medium, to quite large. Ord's mother and father are huge. If that's any indication of how big Ord will become when he grows up...
  • Go-to-Sleep Ending: After Max, Emmy, Zak, Weezie, and Cassie help Ord overcome his fear of sleeping due to a nightmare he had before, he falls asleep in the field where they all were....and the others join him.
  • Gratuitous Spanish:
    • Quetzal and Enrique. And sometimes, the original kids too.
    • At one point they decided to sing "Are You Sleeping?" in Spanish, despite it being a French song.
  • Great Big Book of Everything: Dragon Land is loaded with strange magical creatures and other latent magic such as a cat that makes you copy someone to a weather-vane that when spun makes everyone and everything go backwards. Fortunately, Max, Emmy and the dragons can always consult Quetzal and his "big storybook," which is a full reference to these sort of phenomena, along with the recommended ways of dealing with them.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: In "Cassie the Green-Eyed Dragon," Cassie takes her cute little baby brother Finn to school and gets jealous when everyone pays him attention and doesn't notice her achievements. As this is one of those shows that teaches kids how to handle their emotions, Quetzal helps her by explaining how we all feel jealous sometimes and gives her some help to feel better.
  • Hammerspace: The dragons have marsupial like pouches that they can store just about anything in.
  • Handy Feet: In one episode, Zak scratches his head with his foot, then picks up a rock with his toes.
  • Harmless Villain: Cyrus the Slinky Serpent, included to function as a "bad guy". The worst things he does are done almost exclusively to find food. For example, he takes Emmy's detective kit to find Dragongull eggs to eat, which is seen by the cast as more of an immoral act than the actual theft itself. Not only that, he gives up very easily, mostly stalking off in a huff.
  • A Head at Each End: Meow the CopyCat.
  • Here We Go Again!: At the end of "Roller Coaster Dragon" after helping Wheezie wait her turn to ride the Roller Coaster Dragon, Emmy and Max return home to hear their mom going out to get dinner and ice cream and will return in fifteen minutes. They draw a picture to pass the time, but they end up drawing an ice cream cone which causes them to really want the ice cream and scream for Mom, only to realize they have to wait.
  • Height Angst:
    • In "A Tall Tale", Max is annoyed at being too short to do anything until he helps Eunice the Unicorn find her missing glasses.
    • In "One Big Wish," Max is upset because he can't do certain things because he's always smaller than Emmy and the dragon friends. As for what happens next, see Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever above.
  • Hey, That's My Line!: The Grudge in "The Grudge Won't Budge" when Wheezie says that she and Zak are pals forever.
  • Holding Hands: Max and Emmy do this to go home together.
  • Hold Your Hippogriffs: "More fun than a barrel full of dragonmonkeys."
  • Hollywood California: It's never stated specifically where the kids live, but what we see of their house sure gives off this vibe.
  • Hurt Foot Hop: Zak in "Calling Dr. Zak" after stepping on the spinypine thorn, though it's Wheezie's foot that hops up and down while his foot, with the thorn in it, stays off the ground.
  • I Have This Friend: Used in one episode by Emmy when she breaks Wheezie's trumpet. She tells a story about a little mouse with a red ribbon in her hair who broke something that belonged to a two-headed turtle. Quetzal catches on to what Emmy is doing very quickly and tells her that she should tell Wheezie what she did.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends:
  • Impact Silhouette: Ord likes to do this a lot in the show.
    • In "Forest of Darkness" he leaves a nice clean outline in the ground when a gigantic gum bubble pops.
    • Ord does this through several clouds in "Stormy Weather".
    • "On Thin Ice" sends Ord sliding into a wall of snow when he slips.
    • Max and Eunice the Unicorn do this with a tree in "A Tall Tale".
    • Max does this a second time with Enrique when they crash their sled in "Super Snow Day".
    • Mondo Mouse sees it fit to send the entire gang doing this through rainbow in "Max's Comic Adventure".
  • Injured Limb Episode:
    • In "The Greatest Show in Dragon Land", Wheezie has a broken wing meaning the gang cannot fly to Wonderworld.
    • In "Give Zak A Hand", Zak sprains his wrist after slipping on Wheezie's roller skate.
  • Inspirationally Disadvantaged: Lorca. We get what they were trying to do with him, but it's still a little jarring to see a dragon in a wheelchair—especially since his wings look like they're in fine shape.
  • Inevitable Waterfall: Subverted, Ord is upset when the group's boat has to be refitted for him. He gets a chance to shine when the waterfall comes, blocking the water long enough for the others to fly away.
  • Instantly Proven Wrong: In "A Picture's Worth a Thousand Words," the group is getting assistance from a doodle fairy to help Ord find giggle flowers. The doodle fairy draws a picture that they finally identify as a knuckerhole.
    Zak: I know every knuckerhole in Dragon Land and I can tell you positively, absolutely, there isn't another knuckerhole anywhere near herrrrrrrrre! (He and Wheezie fall into the hole.)
  • Irony: In "No Hitter", Max is practicing kickball and asks Emmy if he could pitch. She agrees, but when they go to Dragon Land to participate in the dragon ball game, Emmy is pitching instead, which the two argue over. This was because Emmy didn't hear Max ask to pitch.
  • I Should Write a Book About This: At the end of the last episode, Max, Emmy, and Enrique decide to write a book about their adventures in Dragon Land, and Emmy suggests naming it Dragon Tales.
  • Jerkass Realization: In "Follow the Leader," Emmy is the leader, but keeps having everyone play stuff that Max is too old to do until he gets irritated and says he's going to play on his own. Then, a giant grabs Emmy and starts trying to do stuff like make her going down a tall slide, leading her to complain that it's too hard and she's to little. Then she realizes that she sounds like Max.
  • Jump Rope Blunders: In "Rope Trick", Emmy is trying to teach Zak and Wheezie to jump rope, but they keep making mistakes such as forgetting to jump when they twirl the rope,* almost tripping over it, and pratfalling. They end up improving by the end of the episode, but they end up tripping again when they grab hold of a sentient jump rope.
  • Leitmotif: The Grudge in "The Grudge Won't Budge" has one that plays each time he speaks to Zak, wheedling him to hang on to him, along with his feelings of anger and resentment towards Wheezie.
  • Licensed Games: Two for the Game Boy Color, one for the Game Boy Advance, one for the Playstation...
  • Limited Wardrobe:
    • Like Arthur, this show makes a direct connection between wardrobe and setting. The kids each have helmets, pajamas, winter clothes, and swimsuits. That said, their standard and recognizable wardrobes are as follows:
      • Max - Green t-shirt with yellow frige on the sleeves and collar, olive pants, white/brownish-orange shoes
      • Emmy - Sky-blue button-down blouse with a red undershirt, red and white shoes
      • Enrique - Yellow t-shirt with a lighter yellow collar, blue jeans, blue and gray shoes with white bottoms. (In "Head Over Heels", Emmy wears an almost identical outfit.)
  • Literal-Minded:
    • In "Zak's Song," Ord's idea of a birdcall is "Calling all birds! Calling all birds!"
    • In "Dragon Drop," when Emmy is teaching Zak and Wheezie catching and tells Wheezie that you have to keep your eye on the ball, she literally puts her eye on the ball. When Emmy tells her that she has to watch the ball, she says that she is and nothing is happening.
  • Loophole Abuse: The dragons pull this when Emmy must perform a cartwheel over a bridge guarded by a troll in order to get to Quetzal's sick brother. Being the only one still struggling to do one, they choose to help her finish the move as the troll never told them this was against the rules.
  • Magic Carpet: "Max and the Magic Carpet", natch.
  • Magical Incantation: How Emmy and Max activate the Dragon Scale and transfer worlds:
    • "I wish, I wish, with all my heart, to fly with dragons in a land apart." (Teleports them to Dragon Land)
    • "I wish, I wish, to use this rhyme, to go back home until next time." (Returns them to the playroom)
    • "Mefirst, Mefirst, go away. That's not the way friends play." (Gets rid of the Mefirst Wizard, but must be said two words a time taking turns to work.)
    • "Alakazoo, split in two." (Splits Zak and Wheezie into two separate dragons. Its counteract is "Alakazoo, stick like glue.")
  • Make a Wish:
    • Wyattnote , a wishing well in the shape of a walrus who grants wishes when coins are thrown in.
    • When a dragon loses a baby tooth, they get to make a wish. Ord's wish after losing his first in "To Fly With Dragons" is that Max and Emmy will keep coming back to Dragon Land to play. Fortunately, this is easy, since they have the scale to wish themselves back there, and Quetzal has another scale that allows them to get back home.
  • Massive Numbered Siblings: Cassie's family, numbering at seventy-two and counting. Unsurprisingly, only three of them actually receive names and character development over the course of the series.
  • It's Okay to Cry: In "Feliz Cumpleaños, Enrique," Quetzal says that Enrique should cry and let out his sad feelings. Enrique says was told that boys couldn't cry and Quetzal essentially calls it out as bull. Enrique then finally cries it out and feels better.
  • Messy Hair: Both Max and Emmy have bedhead throughout "Zak's Song" due to have been woken up at the crack of dawn by a call to Dragon Land well before they would normally get up in the morning.
  • Mistakes Are Not the End of the World: This is a specifically stated show philosophy. According to the show's parent FAQ, one of the program's three primary educational goals was "to help children understand that to try and not succeed fully is a valuable and natural part of learning." Installments of the program frequently showed this philosophy in action, such as in "Knot a Problem" when it takes many tries before Max finally gets the hang of tying knots.
  • Moby Schtick: One episode has the group helping an air pirate capture a whale.
  • Mundane Utility: Fire breath is often used as a substitute oven or microwave.
  • Narnia Time: Can get confusing at times. It may be sunny outside when they leave for Dragon Land, and then when they get back, it'll be pouring rain. Also, it seems possible that the reason their parents don't notice they're missing is that the magic of Dragon Land / the dragon scale has a sort of Invisible to Normals effect, so that any time anyone starts to wonder where they are, they find themselves thinking about something else instead.
  • Never Say "Die": Averted in "Goodbye Little Caterpoozle" where Cassie outright thinks Poozie is dead.
  • The Nicknamer: The Grudge in "The Grudge Won't Budge." "Zakarooni, Zakmeister," pretty much a different one each time it addresses Zak.
  • "No" Means "Yes": The Grudge in "The Grudge Won't Budge" to Zak, the first time he tries to tell him to leave. "Your lips say 'Yes, yes,' but there's a 'No, no' in your eyes." A rare justified variation of this trope, however: the Grudge is a magical creature and will not leave unless Zak actually loses his grudge against Wheezie. The first time Zak tells the Grudge to leave, he's only doing it because he's told to, and the Grudge senses Zak's insincerity since Zak is still mad at Wheezie.
  • Nose Shove: Subverted in the episode "A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words" when Ord is smelling a bouquet of flowers and inadvertantly inhales a Doodle Fairy.
  • Not Where They Thought: In "To Do Or Not to Do", the dragons, Emmy, and Max wander inside a dragonoceros's mouth, mistaking it for the inside of a cave. They realize their mistake once they meet a firefly named Glimmer, who tells them where they really are.
  • Oblivious Astronomers: In "Ord And The Shining Star", Ord throws a Star Seed into the sky and it becomes a star, which Max and Emmy can also see from their own house (despite Dragon Land being in Another Dimension). Why no astronomer ever commented on the sudden presence of a new star is a mystery.
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You
    • Only Zak can choose to get rid of the Grudge in "The Grudge Won't Budge." If anyone else tries to remove it by force, it just clings on all the tighter.
    • In "The Fury is Out On This One" from the first season, only Max can defeat the Fury. It feeds off his anger and grows larger, but if Max calms down, it shrinks until it's small enough that he can stuff it back in the shell he accidentally released it from.
    • Another one involving Zak and Wheezie in "Rope Trick": Emmy tries to teach them to jump rope, but they accidentally toss the rope upwards, sending it through the open window of the school, where it hits a cabinet, causing Quetzel's special mixture to pour onto it—bringing the rope to life! Quetzal states that the only way to change the jump rope back to normal is that the ones who caused the rope to come alive (Zak and Wheezie) must jump over the alive rope three times in row. Lucky for Zak and Wheezie, Quetzal has another rope that they can use for practice, while Max, Cassie and Ord try to chase and get the live jump rope back.
  • On the Next: "Coming up next on Dragon Tales...!" This was dropped in later airings as PBS Kids kept adding in more of their own interstitial programming.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business:
    Ord: Can we eat later? *friends gasp* What. What?
  • Other World of Adventure: Dragon Land itself, of course.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: One with the stomach of a bottomless pit, a little shy one from a extremely reproductive family, a two headed one, one in a wheelchair, a few Hispanic ones, one that is essentially an organic roller coaster... enough variety for you?
  • Personal Raincloud: Ord gets one in "Big Funky Cloud" when he's really sad about having lost his favorite blanket down the "lost forever hole." It rains on him whenever he cries and won't go away unless he feels better. It's also said that this always happens to a dragon who's really sad about something, though it's never seen with a sad dragon in any other story on the show.
  • Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Cassie and Ord, respectively. Zak and Wheezie sort of count too as a green boy/purple girl.
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse: The Giant of Nod, who is only giant to the nodlings but miniature to the dragons and humans. Despite this, he's capable all of the three main dragons and the siblings up at the same time and chucking them into a tree off in the distance.
  • Player Elimination: In "Tails You Lose," the characters play freeze dance and when the music stops, they all have to freeze. The first person to move is out for the rest of the game until a winner is declared. This upsets Emmy, who hates losing and hates being out.
  • Please Keep Your Hat On: In "Musical Scales," Enrique spends most of the story wearing a bright, multicolored hat, trying to hide a bad haircut that his abuelita (grandmother) gave him. "I don't think she's cut hair in a long time." In the end, because Zak and Wheezie have been embarrassed by their appearance due to shedding, he takes it off in a gesture of empathy. As it turns out, the males of the Doodle Fairy kingdom that Zak, Wheezie and Enrique are performing a song number for all sport the same hairstyle, which they show Enrqiue by removing their ceremonial hats. So, ultimately, more or less subverted.
  • Poor Communication Kills: What kicks off the plot of No Hitter. When Max and Emmy are preparing to leave for Dragon Land to partipate in game of Dragon Ball (which is literally just kickball), Max, after demonstrating his pitching skills to Emmy asks her if he can pitch in the game while she is fetching the scale. She does not hear him and says "Okay, Max", meaning "Okay Max, we're all ready to go" which Max misinterprets as "Okay Max, that's fine." This incident is what leads Max to hit Emmy when she insists on having him in the outfield instead of pitching.
    • In "Get Offa my Cloud", Max gets stuck in the cloud because Emmy doesn't even bother to tell Max to not water the plants when she leaves for a snack break with the others, and even earlier when she gets mad at Max about him pulling the plant markers, despite the fact he wasn't in range to hear her when she told the dragons about the markers.
  • Power Glows: The dragons' badges glow when they do a good deed integral to their personalities.
  • Pre Cap: Very unusually for a show this recent. Every segment would be preceded with a short 30-second trailer of the episode you were about to watch, with an announcer saying "Coming up next on Dragon Tales." Very often these spoiled exactly what the main conflict of the episode was about to be, which almost made every episode a case of How We Got Here. Starting with the third season, these were axed entirely, and reruns of all the older episodes had them retroactively sliced as well, making them somewhat valued to VHS traders.
  • Primal Fear: Ord and his fear of darkness.
  • Pun-Based Title: There are a fair few of these. "Knot a Problem" is about Max having trouble tying knots. "The Fury is Out On This One" is wordplay on the phrase "the jury is out on this one." "Bully for You" is about a literal bully, but the phrase is a British phrase that means "good for you," usually used sarcastically.
  • Pungeon Master: Sid Sycamore. His schtick is very specific — all of his puns use terms related to trees — i.e. "leaf / leave," "bark," etc.
  • Punny Name:
    • In "Small Time," Max and Emmy are sprayed by flowers called "shrinking violets" which shrink them to an insect-like size. "Shrinking violet" is a term for an especially shy person.
    • In "Make No Mistake," Ord encounters an anthropomorphic mushroom named "Mama Mia" who talks with an Italian accent.
  • Read the Map Upside Down: in the episode "Pigment of Your Imagination" the group goes on a treasure hunt to find paint at Rainbow Canyon. They have a treasure map that Max tries to read but he is holding it upside down. After an incident, the map breaks.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Wheezy and Zak, respectively.
  • Remembered I Could Fly: In "A Liking to Biking," Ord bicycles off the edge of a cliff and is left dangling from a tire swing, scared out of his mind that he's going to fall, until Cassie reminds him, "Ord! You're a dragon! Use your wings!"
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Mostly averted in the show itself, for obvious reasons. But Cyrus, arguably the most reptilian character in the series, is portrayed as a thief and a liar.
  • Ridiculously Small Wings: All of the eponymous dragons have small, fairy-like wings, far too small to plausibly get them off the ground (magic is expressly involved in their flight). This is called attention to by a single-episode dragon whose wings are of a much more realistic size relative to her body, who has body-image issues as a consequence.
  • Rock–Paper–Scissors:
    • "Prince for a Day" opens with Max and Emmy arguing over which of them has to clean the playroom, Max trying to wheedle out of his regularly scheduled duty because he helped their mother wash the dishes the night before. Enrique shows up and asks how they're going to settle it. They play rock, paper, scissors, but after they stalemate twice, Enrique laments that they're not going to solve anything that way. They go to Dragon Land and after they get back, they tie again, so Enrique decides that they should 'all'' clean up together.
  • Rummage Fail: This happened with Ord when reaching for items in his tummy pouch. Sometimes he will even scarf he things he accidentally pulls out of his pocket (if it's food anyway).
  • Running Gag:
    • Max and Emmy return home, and Max promptly falls asleep.
    • Max and Emmy come home full, and immediately are told to come into the kitchen and eat.
    • Max and Emmy arrive in Dragon Land with Ord present; Ord immediately squishes them in a massive hug.
  • Scout-Out: Cassie invites Emmy to her Dragon Scouts meeting as a guest.
  • Screen Tap: At the end of "Staying Within the Lines," Max ends the show by scribbling black across the screen.
  • Shameful Shrinking: Cassie had a tendency to shrink when she felt upset or ashamed about something.
  • Shaped Like Itself: Wheezie's standard "I just love X. It's so... X-ing!"
  • Short Screentime for Reality: Dragon Land is an expansive and magical land of mythical creatures like... Well... Dragons. Whereas the only part of the real world we see is Max and Emmy's playroom.
  • Shorter Means Smarter: Cassie is the Smart Girl, and she becomes even smaller when frightened.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Sibling Seniority Squabble:
    Wheezie: I'm older! My head hatched out of the egg first!
    Zak: Only by three little seconds!
  • Signature Laugh: Wheezie's "Hee-he-he-ha-ha-ha! (snort-snort-snort)".
  • Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer: Despite being added on equal status with Max and Emmy, Enrique wasn't put in the show intro. Though he was added to the Dragon Tunes segment, oddly enough.
  • Slumber Party: Max and Emmy need to get home, and Cassie is nervous about her first one. They agree to leave together at bedtime.
  • Sore Loser: The theme of "Tails You Lose," which centers around Emmy's inability to tolerate losing.
  • The Speechless: The doodle fairies can only communicate by drawing.
  • Spoonerism: In one episode, Max refers to a pomegranite as a "granipomate".
  • Standard Snippet: The characters play the opening of "Beethoven's Fifth" in "Stormy Weather" when pretending that the thunder is a concert.
  • Start My Own: Boy, oh boy. Fun house, puppet show, treehouse...
  • Stealth Pun: Cassie is shy and tends to shrink when sad or ashamed. She's a semi-literal Shrinking Violet.
  • Stock Audio Clip: Max and Emmy reciting the rhymes to go to and leave Dragon Land almost never changes. In fact, the only times it really does are when it needs to be subverted, such as when they interrupt it.
  • Stock Footage: The dragons flying off the wall and circling around Max and Emmy has the same animation in almost every episode, especially the early ones. Some later episodes did change it up a bit though.
  • Sugar Bowl: Dragon Land fits this trope perfectly.
    • The number one rule in Dragon Land is: "You can never hit anyone." This makes it possible for Dragon Land to be a place with no violence. (We first learn about the rule in "No Hitter" when Max hits Emmy out of frustration when she breaks her promise to let him pitch: Dragon Land is enough of a sugar bowl that this is treated in-universe as something heinous.)
  • Swiper, No Swiping!: The titular wizard of "The Mefirst Wizard" is a selfish wizard who doesn't know how to take turns and therefore takes over whatever you're trying to play on and won't let anyone else have a turn. He can be banished, however, with the rhyme "Mefirst, Mefirst, go away. That's not the way friends play." Though it has to be said two words at a time, with the people saying it taking turns.
  • Tears of Fear: Ord, particularly in the earlier episodes. Later one as he learns to cope with his fears, they happen less often.
  • Teleportation: Max and Emmy use the dragon scale to perform this.
  • That Cloud Looks Like...: In "Roller Coaster Dragon," Wheezie tries this as a way to distract herself from her impatience to get on the roller coaster dragon, but all she can manage to see in the clouds is the roller coaster dragon.
  • That Makes Me Feel Angry: Personified by characters such as the Grudge in "The Grudge Won't Budge." Used frequently in other instances as well.
  • Theme Tune Roll Call: For the first two seasons. Emmy and Max are mentioned first, then each of the main dragon Characters (Ord, Cassie, Zak and Wheezie). Not that the theme changes for the third season, it's just it's no longer a proper roll call because Enrique isn't mentioned.
  • Thought-Aversion Failure: In "Roller Coaster Dragon," Wheezie is impatient at the ten-minute wait for the roller coaster dragon and starts driving everyone nuts with her constant questioning of if it's time yet and otherwise chattering about how she can't stand the wait. Eventually, she declares that she just won't think about it and starts chanting "I will not think about the roller coaster dragon," before admitting that thinking about not thinking about it isn't working.
  • Three Shorts: Dragon Tunes is the B in an ABA format. However, this segment wasn't shown in Netflix prints or in Sprout airings.
  • Title Drop:
    • Emmy with the title of the episode in "The Grudge Won't Budge."
    • At the end of the last episode: A Storybook Ending. Emmy, Max, and Enrique decide to sit down to write a book of their adventures in Dragon Land. Emmy suggests that they call it Dragon Tales.
  • Title Theme Tune: "Dragon Tales, Dragon Tales! / It's almost time for Dragon Tales...!"
  • Toilet Humor: Notably one of two PBS Kids shows for preschoolers to avert this note . The episode "Snow Dragons" features a character called the Burping Rock.
  • Token Human: Emmy and Max are the only human characters to visit Dragon Land, until Enrique's introduction. Unless you count Captain Scallywag, who's an adult that still comes to visit from time to time, having also found a magic dragon scale in his youth.
  • Token Minority: Lorca, the dragon in the wheelchair.
  • Too Dumb to Live: The gang had their moments of this. Most noteworthy was when they chased a ball right into the mouth of a giant dragonocerous, ignoring Cassie's fears that something was terribly wrong about the "cave" they were running in to. Naturally, she's the only one to avoid being inadvertently swallowed by the beast. After several failed attempts to get him to open his mouth, they suggest Cassie drop a rock on his leg. Even though Cassie says this would only scare him away, they insist she try it anyway. Cassie wisely ignores them and trusts her own instincts by tickling the creature, sparing the gang an even worse situation.
  • Towering Flower: Among the many unusual plants found in Dragon Land are dande-lions, otherwise normal dandelions the height of a person — and which also roar like real lions.
  • T-Word Euphemism: In "Roller Coaster Dragon," after Wheezie finally finds a method that works for her to be patient, she comments that while she was doing it, she wasn't thinking about the roller coaster. Zak, shocked, comments that she "said the R word," but Wheezie brushes it off, saying that she just thought of another way to distract herself.
  • Uncanceled: Sort of. There was a four year gap between the second and third seasons, due to the September 11th attacks.note  Many people thought the show was gone for good, until Sesame Workshop announced the third season as a sort of Retool, featuring Enrique and an emphasis on Hispanic culture and folk songs.
  • Vacuum Mouth: Subverted with Ord in the episode "A Picture is Wirth a Thousand Words" when he (inadvertently) inhales a Doodle Fairy with a vacuum nose as he is smelling some flowers.
  • Vertebrate with Extra Limbs: In "Roller Coaster Dragon," the dragon operating the concession stand has six arms. When Wheezie tells to hurry up because they need to get back in line to get on the roller coaster dragon, he asks if he looks like an octopus, saying that he only has six arms.
  • Visual Pun: More than you can count. For example, we have a CopyCat that causes one person to be exactly like another, there are Shrinking Violets that shrink whatever they touch when they bloom, a Grudge who literally clings onto someone holding a grudge...
  • The Voice: Max and Emmy's parents always call to them from elsewhere in the house but we never see them, or the rest of the house besides the playroom. (This includes their bedrooms.) Their mom is heard more often.
  • Vocal Evolution: Max's voice has noticeably gotten deeper in season 3, due to Danny McKinnon having gotten older and going through puberty.
  • Walk Into Camera Obstruction:
    • "Not Separated At Birth" with Zak and Wheezie as they're flying around after being back together again then fades to Max and Emmy's room.
    • "The Talent Pool" with Ord as he runs over to Max and Emmy to hug them.
  • Water Is Dry: Whenever Max or Emmy fall in water.
  • "Where? Where?": In "Zak and the Beanstalk," Mungus the giant asks Max, Emmy, Zak and Wheezie why they're in his castle. Zak, panicked, claims that they're there to sell him dragonberry cookies. Wheezie, however, tells him that they're there to rescue the do re mi birds and Max agrees "Yeah! From the big mean giant." This causes him to panic, asking "Big mean giant? Uhhhh... where?" Emmy tells him that "He means you!" He replies that he's the littlest one in his family, that he's not mean.
  • Widely-Spaced Jail Bars: In "Max's Comic Adventure," the gaps between the bars of Mondo Mouse's cage are clearly big enough for him to just walk through, but nevertheless, Max, Emmy and the dragons have to rescue him by figuring out a code to raise up the bars, making it a serious example.
  • Wild Card Excuse: Several occur in "Ord's Unhappy Birthday", such as this one:
    Max: We can't, we have to go meet Cassie to set up for the par-
    Emmy: Picnic! (Beat) Uhh...Max and I are having a picnic with Cassie, so uhh... Happy Birthday Ord...bye!
  • Winged Unicorn: Eunice in A Tall Tale. She even has a golden horn. And, was voiced by G3 Pinkie Pie (Janyse Jaud). There's also a bunch of young unicorns in "Making it Fun" and they're all winged too, so maybe all unicorns in Dragon Land have wings.
  • Worthless Treasure Twist: Captain Scaliwag's treasure in "Sky Pirates" turns out to be pictures he drew as a little boy.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Max punches Emmy in "No Hitter" after she takes the pitcher's mound, despite her telling him before they arrived that he could pitch (to be fair though, Emmy was too preoccupied with preparing their trip to Dragon Land to give Max's request much notice), though he does learn he shouldn't do so.
  • Written-In Absence: Emmy, Cassie, Zak and Wheezie are each absent for at least one episode.
  • You Can Talk?:
    • In "To Fly With Dragons," when Cassie and Ord first fly down to Max and Emmy and Emmy hears Ord whisper Cassie's name, her reaction is "Wow, you talk!" Cassie replies "So do you!"
    • In "Knot a Problem," Max and Emmy meet a magical merry-go-round and are surprised that the ponies on it can walk and talk.
    • In "Emmy's Dream House," Max is surprised when the tree Sid Sycamore, whom Emmy wants to build the treehouse in, talks. Sid asks him if he thought that he could only bark.
    • When Enrique first arrives in Dragon Land in "To Fly With a New Friend," he bolts upon seeing Ord and ends up hiding behind Sid Sycamore, shouting to himself (or so he thinks) "Dragones! Dragons!" Sid tells him "They're really very nice, you know," and he runs off again, shouting "A talking tree!" Then, a bit later, he bumps into Cassie and she asks him if he's okay and he reacts with "T-talking dragon!" Emmy tells him not to be afraid, that Ord and Cassie are friends.
  • You Mean "Xmas":
    • Dragon Land's version of Valentine's day is called "Dragontine's Day".
    • "Pigment of Your Imagination" also has "I Love Mommy Day," which is just Mother's Day by another name.

"I wish, I wish, to use this rhyme,
To go back home, until next time."


Video Example(s):


Dragon Tales - Bee's Bad Mood

In "Itchy Situation" from "Dragon Tales," honey is needed to make up a cure for Mungus the Giant's itchy back. Enrique, Zak and Wheezie try to get a bee to share some, but he doesn't want to. Why? No reason other than that he's in a bad mood.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (2 votes)

Example of:

Main / BadMoodAsAnExcuse

Media sources: