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"Arthur's Baby"
Season/Series: 1
Number in season: 11A
Original Airdate: United States October 21, 1996[1]
Canada January 20, 1997[2]
Germany December 21, 2001[3]
Credits
Written by: Marc Brown (original)
Joe Fallon (adapted)
Storyboard by: Gerry Capelle
Episodes
Previous
"Francine Frensky, Superstar"
Next
"D.W.'s Baby"
Read transcript

"Arthur's Baby" is the first half of the eleventh episode in the first season of Arthur. It is based on the book Arthur's Baby.

Summary

Arthur isn't too sure he wants a new baby in the house, but once Kate arrives, he decides that she is pretty cute after all.

Plot

This episode opens with the Reads celebrating Kate's first birthday as she messily eats her cake.

Arthur tells the viewers that babies do some dopey things, but then adds that “we were all babies once” before giving a few examples: his friend Buster who ate unpaid-for food in the grocery store, Mr. Ratburn who drew numbers on the wall at home, and even Jane and David; baby Jane orders someone to clean their room.

Arthur notes that even Kate is growing up, and he already misses the days when she was a cute little baby. However, D.W. argues that he actually doesn't. Arthur says he does, but D.W. points out that he didn't even like Kate when she was a newborn. “Did too!” Arthur insists. D.W. doesn't believe him, and says she remembers exactly what happened.

Arthur's Baby

Arthur and D.W. are playing a grape eating contest and fight over the last one. Arthur tries to catch the grape but D.W. manages to snag it in her mouth. David then arrives and reveals they have a surprise: Jane announces that they are going to have a baby. While D.W. is excited, Arthur is shocked. David tells Arthur that it will be six months before the baby comes.

Arthur gets nervous because of his friends all being mean and teasing him about what could happen after the baby is born.

  • At gym, Binky tells Arthur that he “better get some earplugs; babies never stop crying” before he starts laughing. Arthur then imagines the baby crying loudly while at the dinner table; Arthur then asks his parents to pass the salt. When Jane asks, “What?” Arthur repeats, “I said pass the salt!” A fire truck drives by; the sound of the baby's crying makes the firefighters cover their ears.
  • At the swimming pool, Muffy tells Arthur that in a few months, he would be changing all of the baby's dirty diapers. At that point, Muffy holds her nose and leaps right into the pool, briefly causing water to splash onto the entire screen.
  • Buster wraps a shoe around Arthur's face to "protect [him] from those smelly diapers", but when Arthur complains that he can't even breath, Buster tries to pull it off. The shoe falls with a crash in Arthur's living room.
  • Arthur wonders why babies are such a big deal despite them not doing anything. Buster suggests that he can teach the baby to earn money for him or do his homework. Arthur imagines making his baby brother do his homework while he reads comics. He sighs in despair because that wouldn't happen in real life.
  • Buster tells Arthur that he will forget about hanging out with his friends after school and will have to babysit.
  • Francine tells Arthur that he will start talking baby talk all the time. Arthur imagines that he is at football practice. He catches the pass, but is tackled by Binky. The coach compliments Arthur's catch and asks if he's okay; Arthur responds in a baby voice that he “got an ouchie boo boo.” The entire team and the coach start laughing at him except Buster presumably (with Binky also claiming he smells like diapers), causing Arthur to glare at them.

Arthur is having a nightmare. Jane comes into his room and asks him if he's all right, as he was tossing and turning. Arthur admits that he was having a dream, and his mother thinks he is as excited as her about the baby coming. The next day, Arthur and Buster are kite-flying in the park when Arthur tells Buster that the baby's due any day now. When the two see a mom with infant-triplets walking past them, Buster brings up the possibility of Arthur's mom giving birth to more than one baby this time around. Arthur then daydreams that there are ten babies at home with him, who all start crying, which makes him scream.

When Arthur gets home, D.W. and Jane are in the living room. D.W. wants to show him how to diaper a baby by practicing on her diapered dolls, including Arthur's Bionic Bunny. He scolds her for this. Jane shows her kids videos of them when they were babies. The first one is Arthur at age one and learning how to walk. Jane tells him that he was a cute baby. "What went wrong?" D.W. teases. Her baby video comes on and D.W. is initially surprised, asking “That’s me?” Then, D.W. exclaims how adorable she was, and tells Jane that she hopes the new baby will be just like her. Arthur replies that that's what he's afraid of.

Jane is packing her suitcase and tells Arthur that she is ready to go to the hospital for the baby's arrival. D.W. gives Jane a picture of herself so that her mother will have something to look at there and can "make another perfect kid."

The next day, Arthur and D.W. are racing to the bottom of the stairs. She claims she won; he insists it was a tie. They run into the kitchen and find Grandma Thora making blueberry pancakes. "Grandma Thora, you're in the wrong house," D.W. says. Arthur asks her where their parents are and Thora explains that they are at the hospital. She reveals the new baby is a girl, meaning that Arthur and D.W. now have a sister. D.W. is excited and does cartwheels. Arthur becomes even more anxious.

At the hospital, they meet their new sister, Kate. D.W. claims that she has Arthur's nose, while Arthur points out she has D.W's mouth when Kate begins to cry. The next day, Jane and David bring Kate home. Arthur is happy to meet her, but Kate cries every time he tries to hold or even gets near her. He's further despondent that Kate doesn't cry when D.W. holds her. After failing to get Kate to warm up to him, Arthur assumes she hates him, and he shares this thought with Francine and Buster. Francine thinks that Kate cries simply because that's what babies do, but Arthur points out that Kate only does so when she's with him.

One day, Jane leaves Arthur in charge of Kate. When he offers her her pacifier, D.W. yells that it is dirty, making Kate cry. D.W. cleans the pacifier and puts it in Kate's mouth, silencing her. Then the doorbell rings; it's Buster and Francine. D.W. lets them see Kate peacefully asleep, but all of a sudden, she spits out her pacifier and cries. D.W. tries to feed Kate her bottle, but she refuses. Francine asks Arthur if he’s going to help, but Arthur believes that he’ll only make things worse. D.W. then assumes Kate needs a clean diaper and leaves Arthur to take care of her while she gets one. Arthur gently pats Kate on the back until she burps, which turns out to be the problem; Kate calms down and bonds with Arthur. When Jane and D.W. arrive, Buster excitedly tells them how Arthur burped the baby. Kate messily kisses him on the cheek as her way of thanking him, which everyone happily watches.

Characters

Major

Minor

Cameo

Trivia

  • At the end of the 2000 rerun intro on PBS Kids before this episode, Arthur’s crashing sound changes to pots and pans.
  • In Arthur's imagination, Mr. Ratburn was called 'Emil' by his mom. This first name was seen in his family tree in "Background Blues" but his full name was later given as Nigel Charles Ratburn in "Bitzi's Beau." His name has consistently been Nigel ever since.
  • Even though the title was not read on the home video and DVD releases, Binky does say the name of this episode when it aired on television.
  • In the Audio Descriptive version, the Amazing Baby in Arthur’s imagination bears a striking resemblance to Kate.

Cultural references

  • Ferdinand Magellan was mentioned in Arthur's second imagination about having a smart baby do his homework for him.

Episode connections

  • Though this is her first proper introduction, Kate previously appeared in episodes prior.
  • "D.W.'s Baby" builds on the events of this episode, although it is taken from D.W.'s perspective.
  • Kate's crying is completely different in this episode (and "D.W.'s Baby") compared to the stock sound effects that are normally used for Kate and other babies. This is most likely because she was a newborn at the time.
  • This episode and its sister episode, along with "Arthur Goes Crosswire"/"Sue Ellen and the Brainasaurous", is one of only 2 known Arthur episode sets to focus on the same story from 2 alternate points of view.

Errors

  • When Jane asks Arthur to watch Kate, Kate is wearing blue pants. A few seconds later, they change back into her regular clothes.
  • In the flashback to DW as a baby, she appears to have very little hair, like a usually newborn. However, most future episodes with flashbacks of DW as a baby will have her with a head full of hair.
  • T-shirts should never be tucked into diapers; nonetheless, this mistake continues to be done. The only character to be properly seen with the shirt hanging out of the diaper was Arthur when he was a baby.

Differences from the book

  • Kate's bassinet is purple, although in the book, it was white (as well as on the cover illustration).
  • The videos of Arthur and D.W. as babies show Arthur as a toddler at the age of 1 and D.W. when she was just a baby with a lot of crying. In the book, it was a photo album that showed Arthur wearing a cowboy hat and crawling at nine months old and sitting in a high chair with a bowl of food on his head and eating at the age of 1, and D.W. when she was two months old and when she was 5 months old.
  • In the book, the Bionic Bunny action figure wasn't featured, and D.W. was only diapering her dolls.
  • Brain and Muffy came to Arthur's house in addition to Francine and Buster.
  • When asked if he'd like to hold Kate, rather than trying to hold her, Arthur said that he'd pass.

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