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"Prunella Gets it Twice"

Prunella Gets it Twice

Prunella Future

Season/Series: 4
Number in season: 6B
Original Airdate: October 12, 1999
Credits
Written by: Joe Fallon
Storyboard by: Michel Magnan
Peter Huggan
Episodes
Previous
"D.W. Tale Spins"
Next
"Binky Barnes, Wingman"
"Prunella Gets it Twice" is the second half of the sixth episode in the fourth season of Arthur.

Summary

Prunella's birthday party (not her half birthday) is almost ruined by getting two Polly Locket dolls. Worse, Francine isn't in the mood to sing the Happy Birthday song! Is there a connection between the two complications? The Ghost of Presents Past appears to show Prunella things about friendship and gratitude in her dreams.

Plot

The introduction takes place in a medieval setting with two peasants (Arthur and Buster) hauling a large crate up a long winding staircase leading to a castle. They are bringing the Queen (Prunella) a birthday gift, which they reveal to be a wooden bicycle. However, Prunella is displeased that the one gift is from both of them, so she pulls a lever that flattens the staircase into a giant slide. As Arthur and Buster continue to slide down, another peasant (Francine) arrives with a small box to present as her gift. As Prunella begins to unwrap the box, the guards (Sue Ellen and Binky) laugh insidiously, telling Francine that the Queen does not like anything. Francine is shown with a nervous grin as the screen blacks out to the title card.




The episode begins on Prunella's birthday, with Prunella trying on the new dress her mother bought for her. Rubella then presents her gift as a Polly Locket doll, as Prunella excitedly exclaims that she really wanted one. At the party, Prunella starts opening presents. The first present turns out to be another Polly Locket, which she immediately tosses aside, saying that she already has one. Francine noticeably becomes saddened by this as Prunella continues to open the other presents.

At bedtime, Prunella tells Rubella that the party was great aside from Francine, who did not wish her happy birthday or partake in the festivities. She dismisses it as Francine's jealousy for not being the center of attention and goes to sleep.

In the middle of the night, Prunella is visited by the Ghost of Presents Past and the Ghost of Lunch Tomorrow. She initially dismisses the ghosts, but they forcefully transport her away in ghost form to show her some important events leading up to her birthday party.

The first flashback takes places in Mr. Ratburn's class, where Francine is shown to have gotten an A+ on the history exam. Prunella mistakes that the ghosts were supposed to haunt Francine for being rude at her party, at which they take her to the next flashback.

Prunella observes her past self staring at some Polly Locket dolls on display at a toy store when Francine and Arthur are walking by. Francine thanks Prunella for helping her study for the history exam and asks about Polly Locket. Prunella says that she really wants one, but cannot afford it and walks off. Francine remembers that Prunella's birthday is next week. She initially settles on a buying her a pack of gum, but then resolves to do whatever it takes to get the money to buy her a Polly Locket.

The next scene shows Francine at the Crosswire Estate asking Muffy for a loan. Muffy is reluctant as she tries to scare Francine away with outrageous terms, but Francine agrees to all of them despite not knowing their meaning. However, Muffy cannot bring herself to do it, so Francine leaves.

The Ghosts of Presents Past explains that Francine started doing extra chores for money, including mowing Mrs. Tibble's lawn, cleaning out the family shed, and washing her dad's garbage truck and car. Prunella is also shown the sacrifices that Francine made, including not playing soccer in order to do the extra chores.

Francine finally makes enough money to afford a Polly Locket and returns to the toy store. She discovers that Polly's sweater can be personalized for a few dollars more. She gets the extra money from Catherine, but only after agreeing to clean their entire room for a month. Francine returns to the store and buys a Polly Locket with "YOU ARE GREAT" sewn into the sweater. Prunella exclaims that she did not even look at it close enough to see that it was personalized.

The last flashback takes Prunella and the ghosts back to the day of the party, with Prunella observing her past self opening Francine's present and ungratefully tossing it aside as before. Prunella finally comes to realize that her unappreciativeness was the reason Francine was so miserable. The Ghost of Presents Past confirms that it was indeed Prunella's fault, and sends her back to the present. Prunella wakes up and runs over to examine Francine's Polly Locket, and verifies that the sweater is indeed personalized with "YOU ARE GREAT."

The next morning, Francine is shown practicing hockey by herself. Catherine calls out the window to remind Francine to clean their room. Prunella arrives and apologizes for being initially ungrateful for the gift, and shows Francine that she has put a photo of her inside of her Polly Locket. Prunella also gifts Francine the Polly Locket she originally got from Rubella, which she had gotten personalized to say "#1 COOL FRIEND." Francine is shocked at how Prunella knows about the work she did to afford it, so Prunella changes the subject to demonstrate how storing things in the doll works. She gives Francine a photo of herself to put inside hers, but Francine declines it, saying that she'll put in a picture of her cat instead.

Oliver then invites the girls in for lunch. The Ghost of Lunch Tomorrow tells Prunella what it will be, and she again surprises Francine with this knowledge. The episode ends with the ghost laughing mischievously.

Characters

Major

Minor

Cameo

Trivia

  • Oliver Frensky's car is seen here, but has never been shown again since, and he drives a garbage truck since he's a sanitation engineer.
  • The Ghost of Presents Past is just the Polly Locket doll.

Cultural references

  • Polly Locket is a parody of the Polly Pocket doll.
  • The event where the ghosts show Prunella the past is similar to what happens to Ebenezer Scrooge in Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol.

Episode connections

  • In "Misfortune Teller", Prunella celebrated her 9-1/2 birthday. This story takes place six months after "Misfortune Teller" and is when Prunella turns 10 years old, even though she is still referred to as a 9-year-old in many other episodes, but her birthday has never been revealed. However, both of these episodes take place in her fourth grade year.
  • The outfit Francine wears to the party is the same one she wore in Francine Frensky, Superstar, where she portrayed Thomas Edison in the school play.

Errors

  • In the beginning, the dress Prunella wears for formal events is seen brand new with a tag; although she already wore that dress during Season 1 during formal events that took place long before this episode's timeframe, and even wore that same dress when she was in third grade in "Arthur's Birthday".

Production Notes

  • This is the first episode to use Prunella Seeing The Future as a title card.

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References

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