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Meek for a Week

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"Meek for a Week"

1x17a

Meek for a Week Title Card

Season/Series: 1
Number in season: 17A
Original Airdate: Flag of the United States October 29, 1996[1]
Flag of Canada January 28, 1997[2]
Flag of Germany January 4, 2002[3]
Credits
Written by: Joe Fallon
Storyboard by: Jean Charles Fink
Episodes
Previous
"D.W. Flips"
Next
"Arthur, World's Greatest Gleeper"
Read transcript
"Meek for a Week" is the first half of the seventeenth episode in the first season of Arthur. It was later adapted into the book Francine, Believe It or Not.

Summary

Muffy dares Francine to be nice to everyone for a whole week and she can not tell anyone why she is being nice. Arthur and his friends are worried when Francine starts acting nice for no apparent reason and are worried she may "pop" if she continues bottling up her anger. They try fruitlessly to diffuse her.

Plot

The episode opens up to Arthur climbing up to the treehouse, explaining how Francine has done some weird things in the past, including trying to break the world's longest hand-walking record by walking on her hands everywhere, practicing the drums on the roof at the crack of dawn (and waking up her neighbors while doing so), and making a life-sized painting of an elephant on her bedroom wall, shocking her parents.

Meek for a Week

Arthur and his friends are playing hockey against Binky's team and Francine has the puck; however, Francine isn't playing like a good sport. She even steals the puck from Arthur, who is on her team. Even though she scores a goal, this infuriates Muffy, since Francine is doing all the work and never letting anyone score. Francine says that she would give the puck if they want to lose, shocking everyone. Muffy is not happy about this.

The game continues and the puck is passed to Muffy. Arthur tells Muffy to score, but Francine says to pass it to her. Muffy, while attempting to score, gets distracted and has the puck stolen from Binky's team. This causes the team to score and Francine's team to lose.

While walking home, Francine blames Arthur for losing since he told Muffy to score and Francine thinks Muffy is the worst player on the team. Muffy, upset after hearing this, turns back and walks in the opposite direction. Francine follows her and asks what's wrong. Muffy says that she would play better if Francine actually let her play, but she doesn't. Francine says that she is one of the nicest people in the whole school. Muffy bets Francine her Princess Peach watch, which Francine always liked, if Francine could be nice for an entire week. Francine thinks she can do this, and the bet is made. However, Muffy says that she can't tell anyone about it.

After the weekend, Arthur is shown in school wearing a different sweater than his usual yellow one. Everyone, including Buster, thinks it looks weird. Arthur says that his usual sweater is dirty so he has to wear this one. Muffy and Sue Ellen laugh. However, as Francine approaches, Arthur expects to get teased. Francine looks at Arthur, trying not to laugh and remarks that Arthur is wearing that sweater, but Muffy looks at her, reminding her about the bet. Francine says that it is nice and walks away, surprising Arthur and Buster.

The next day, Tuesday, the gang are playing baseball and it's Buster's turn to bat. Francine is surprised at this and decides to bat for Buster, but changes her mind and lets Buster bat since she has to be nice. Francine asks if Buster is okay. Buster says yes, confused at Francine's behavior, and asks her if she is okay. Francine says yes and thanks Buster for asking.

On Wednesday, Arthur, Buster, Brain, and Sue Ellen are watching Francine and Muffy practicing hockey. Muffy makes a mistake and falls on Francine. Francine, frustrated, attempts to scold Muffy at first, but stops herself and compliments Muffy afterwards. Arthur and his friends are starting to notice that Francine is not acting like her usual self, but nicer than usual. Brain says that Francine replaced his football that she accidentally threw down the sewer a week prior. However, Sue Ellen reveals something even more unusual; Francine replaced Sue Ellen's glass of juice that she drank last summer. In the middle of all this, Francine's pants get ripped as a result of Muffy falling on her. Muffy apologizes, and asks if she is still invited over for dinner. Francine hesitates because she is still angry but tries not to express it for fear of saying something mean, and eventually says yes. Muffy walks off, and Francine starts kicking the wall in frustration because her pants are ripped. Muffy walks back, and Francine stops. After that, Muffy comes back again after Francine tries to kick the wall, still frustrated. Muffy offers to call off the bet, but Francine decides not to. After Muffy walks off again, Francine sits down, still not happy about her pants being ripped.

On Thursday, Francine is with her family and Muffy at dinner. Francine offers to help her dad. Oliver is surprised at this behavior. Catherine sees that Francine is wearing her ripped pants and snarks about it. Francine remarks that Catherine's clothes are great and agrees with Catherine to go shopping with her on Saturday. Francine walks away, disgusted about Catherine's taste.

On Friday, Arthur, Brain, Buster, and Sue Ellen are at lunch and they realize that Francine has been acting much politer than her usual self and her behaviour is almost too good to be true. Buster says he is scared, and Arthur says that they are all scared. Brain explains that Francine's behavior is not good for her, as she is holding her anger in. He explains it by shaking a bottle of soda until it explodes. They all agree that they need to make Francine lose her temper in order to make her act like her old self again.

At baseball, Arthur and Buster deliberately miss catching the ball in order to make Francine get mad. Francine is clearly frustrated by this but holds it back saying that the sun was probably in their eyes. Arthur and Buster are disappointed that Francine is still acting unusually nice.

At the Sugar Bowl, Arthur offers Francine a cherry soda. Francine gets frustrated by this since all her friends know that she doesn't like cherry. Muffy walks over, and Francine decides to try the soda anyway. She drinks it quickly but doesn't enjoy it, however, she doesn't say or do anything besides nearly slamming the glass on the table. Arthur is frustrated that Francine is still acting uncharacteristically nice after this.

Later on, Buster tells Francine that Binky said that he could beat Francine at any sport. Arthur and Brain ask her if that makes her angry. Francine shrugs this off and makes some remarks, none of which are rude, and walks away. Arthur and his friends worry that Francine could "pop" at any time and imagine that Francine's head literally popping off, hitting the school roof (as in she "hit the roof") and flying away.

At Muffy's house, Arthur and Buster ask Muffy if anything is wrong with Francine. However, Muffy remarks that Francine will be back to normal tomorrow afternoon. However, Arthur fears this since it is right after the playoff hockey game. Muffy is equally as shocked after Arthur mentions this.

At the hockey game, Binky scores a goal even though Francine could have stolen the puck. Arthur is frustrated that Francine didn't steal the puck, but Francine says that it would have been rude. Muffy is also frustrated. Francine is not playing in order to be nice, even getting out of Binky's way. Arthur tells Francine to distract the goalie, but Francine refuses. Sue Ellen scores and Francine even lets an opposing team member score against her own team, shocking Buster.

Muffy declares Francine the winner of the bet and gives her the watch, even though there are thirty-seven minutes left before the bet is over. However, Binky accidentally runs into her and causes her to drop the watch and break it. This is the final straw for Francine and she finally loses her temper. She takes it on the hockey game but lets others, including Muffy, score. The team scores over and over until the game ends.

Francine is finally back to her old self, much to the relief of her friends. But Buster is kind of disappointed that he didn't get to see her head pop off. Even Muffy has had enough and says that Francine was becoming boring. Francine starts to scold Muffy for calling her boring, but Muffy stops her. Francine decides to tell Binky to buy her a new watch, and the two walk off.

Characters

Major characters

Minor characters

Background characters

Trivia

Episode Connections

  • Arthur mentions this episode in the later episode Francine Goes to War.
  • During the quick montage of Francine getting angry after Binky breaks her watch, a clip of the building being demolished from D.W.'s Baby can be seen.

Cultural references

  • "They very soon came upon a gryphon..." is a line from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland: Chapter IX: The Mock Turtle's Story by Lewis Carroll.
  • Muffy and Francine bet on a Princess Peach watch. Princess Peach is the name of a character from the Super Mario Bros. video games, but it is unknown if this was an intentional reference.

Errors

  • When Francine approaches Muffy and screeches her bike to a stop, the tires on her bike are shown white in that scene, although her bike has gray to black tires in its other appearances.
  • When the Brain is wearing his helmet, his ears are not shown; although the helmet has openings for the ears to be shown for top-eared species like aardvarks, bears, cats, rabbits, and etc.
  • Arthur and Buster were not wearing their baseball caps during the second baseball game.
  • Right before Muffy tells Francine she's "So rude" the helmet hole showing her hair flashes yellow, the same color as the helmet for a second.
  • At the Sugar Bowl, when Francine sits next to Arthur and is offered a cherry soda which she rejects but tries it anyway, she is sitting next to the outside, and Arthur is sitting next to the wall; but after Francine finishes off the soda, she and Arthur are sitting on the opposite side of the booth, and Arthur is sitting next to the outside while Francine is sitting next to the wall.

Production notes

  • In an earlier version of the title card for this episode, the name of the episode is not read by an Arthur character, and Arthur does not yelp when Francine hits the gong. In a later version of this, however, Binky says the name of the episode, and Arthur DOES yelp when Francine hits the gong.
  • There was also a song based on this episode, which can be found on Arthur and Friends: The First Almost Real Not Live CD (or Tape).

Home video

VHS:

DVD:

Gallery

Main article: Meek for a Week/Gallery

References


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