(We see Buster's apartment, then we see a sign that says "Buster Baxter, Private Eye" with an eyeball on the bottom. The door slowly opens and we see Buster in his room wearing a trenchcoat and a hat drinking a soda.)
Buster (to the viewers): Buster Baxter, Private Eye. I'm going to tell you about my very first case. It involved my Pal Arthur, some missing quarters, and a WHOLE lot of trouble.
(We now see Arthur sitting in detention in Mr. Ratburn's classroom all by himself feeling very disappointed)
Arthur: (sighs) Detention......
(Shortly after, we hear loud chatter from the kids outside the hallway)
Arthur: (gasps) Sounds like a mob!
Kids: Arthur? (chants): Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur!
Arthur: OH NO! (hides behind his desk)
(The doorknob slowly turns)
Buster: But I'm getting ahead of myself! Let's go back to the beginning.
Buster: It all started two days ago. It was a Wednesday, just like any other.
(Arthur is volunteering at a fundraising booth in the school hallway so the Elwood City Fire Department can get a new puppy)
Binky: What's with the dopey table, Arthur?!
Arthur: I'm collecting quarters for Mrs. MacGrady's fundraising drive. We're going to buy a puppy for the fire department. Can you give a quarter?
Binky: Ummm....... well....... (thinks about it for a moment and finally gives him the quarter). Here!
Buster: Hey Arthur, my Mom's taking me to the arcade! You wanna come?
Buster: My mom's waiting in the car! Hurry!
Arthur: Just let me take these quarters to Mrs. MacGrady. (puts the quarters in a paper bag, then notices his private eye costume) What's with the goofy hat?
Buster: It's part of my new detective kit! I've been snooping, looking for crimes!
Arthur: Did you find one?
Buster: No, but I did pick up some secret information. (looks around) Third grade picnic this Friday!
Arthur: (sighs) I know that, Buster. There have been signs up for two weeks!
Buster: Oh well, I'm not giving up. I'll find a crime! Hurry up, I'll tell my Mom that I'll wait for you!
(In the cafeteria kitchen, Mrs. MacGrady is talking on the phone with the fire chief)
Mrs. MacGrady: What's that, chief? Yes, Smokey is a nice name for a dog! But how about Edgar or Winston?
Arthur: Mrs. MacGrady?
Mrs. MacGrady: Yes, it does have a nice kind of ring now that you mentioned it. And it certainly is appropriate!
Arthur: Excuse me, Mrs. MacGrady?!
Mrs. MacGrady: Smoke is pretty much your business, isn't it? Where there's Smokey, there's a fireman you might say.
Arthur: I gotta get going!
Mrs. MacGrady: But I don't want to see the dog getting some kind of complex, Chief. Dogs are sensitive, you know, and if you name a fire dog Smokey, well, who's he gonna root for?
Arthur: (tries to grab Mrs. MacGrady's attention)
Mrs. MacGrady: Now Chester, there's a fine name for a dog, don't you think?
Arthur: (puts the bag of quarters on the table and leaves)
Mrs. MacGrady: It's a real canine name for a dog! My first husband was named Chester.
(At the arcade....)
Buster: That afternoon, I still hadn't found a mystery. But there are always shifty characters at the arcade. I thought it'd be a good place to look.
(Buster has a magnifying glass in his hands looking for subjects)
Mrs. Baxter: Watch where you're going, Buster! That magnifying glass is going to give you eye strain!
Buster: My mom wasn't exactly helping.
Buster: Huh? (rushes over to where the sirens came from)
(Arthur hit the high score on the pinball machine)
Buster: Arthur, you did it! You hit the high score! WAY TO GO! That's my best friend! My best friend hit the high score!
(At school the next day....)
Buster: Boy, you rocked last night! Step aside, everyone! Pinball wizard comin' through!
Principal Haney: Arthur, don't forget to give Mrs. MacGrady the quarters you collected from the fundraising drive.
Arthur: I already did, Mr. Haney.
Principal Haney: Hmmm, she told me she never got them.
Buster: Maybe they were stolen!
Principal Haney: Buster, please! Now, is it possible that you brought them home by mistake?
Buster: No, he came straight to the arcade with me. In fact, he got the high score in pinball! I did that once, took all my birthday money! Like 100 quarters! Boy, did I blow a lot of quart....
Ms. Tingley: This doesn't look good, Mr. Haney....
Principal Haney: It certainly doesn't, Ms. Tingley.
Arthur: You mean, you think I STOLE THE QUARTERS?!
(Buster overhears a conversation between Arthur, Ms. Tingley, and Principal Haney in the Principal's Office)
Principal Haney: YOU WERE RESPONSIBLE FOR THEM, ARTHUR!
Ms. Tingley: You certainly were!
Principal Haney: If that money doesn't turn up, I'm afraid that you'll have to serve a day....
Ms. Tingley: Week!
Principal Haney: .... a week of after school detention starting today!
Ms. Tingley: AND NO PICNIC FOR YOU TOMORROW!
(At the cafeteria....)
Arthur: My first important job, and everyone thinks I'm a thief! I'M INNOCENT! I need a lawyer!
Buster: (spits out his soda) Are you kidding?! You can't afford a lawyer! You need a detective! Like... say.... ME!
Arthur: I don't know. You think you can really find out who stole all of the quarters?
Buster: No problem! Buster Baxter is on the case! You're going to that picnic tomorrow Arthur. Trust me! But right now, I gotta do some snooping.
Arthur: Just try not to get me in deeper trouble, okay?
(Back in the cafeteria kitchen....)
Buster (voiceover): The first person to question was the dame in the pink smock, named Mrs. MacGrady. Occupation: Cafeteria Lady.
Buster (to Mrs. MacGrady): Can you tell me your whereabouts yesterday afternoon?
Mrs. MacGrady: I was here in the cafeteria.... (Buster attempts to taste the brownie mix) STOP THAT! Baking brownies.
Buster: AHA! Maybe I better taste one of those brownies.
Mrs. MacGrady: Nice try, but nobody touches them until the picnic! But you can help me with the desserts for the 4th graders. I didn't see anyone come in here all afternoon! Oh, I forgot, Mr. Morris was in here. He came in to mop up when the brownie mix overflowed. Maybe you should talk to him.
Buster (with his mouth full): Thank you very much!
Mrs. MacGrady: (gasps because she notices that Buster ate one of the pies) Hmmmmmm......
(Mr. Morris is whistling while pushing a cart back to the Janitor's Closet)
Buster (voiceover): Mr. Morris, the school janitor. A guy with access to every part of the school!
(Buster is disguised in the mop)
Mr. Morris: BUSTER?!
Buster: Can I ask you a couple of questions, Mr. Morris? (trips over a broomstick and falls)
(Now they go outside where Mr. Morris is washing windows)
Mr. Morris: Sure, I went into the kitchen yesterday afternoon.
Buster: AHA! And what were you doing there?
Mr. Morris: Cleaning the floor around the blender. Mrs. MacGrady spilled something. Brownie mix, I think.
Buster: Do you ALWAYS clean up after Mrs. MacGrady?
Mr. Morris: Not often. She's usually pretty tidy. Anything else, Buster?
Buster: That's all for now. But, don't leave town! Just one more thing, Mr. Morris! That jingling sounds an awful lot like quarters! ALOT OF QUARTERS!
(It turns out to be his keys)
Buster: (gasps) Oh, never mind.
Buster (voiceover): A couple of hours on the job, and I need less from what I started. There was only one place left to go. It was time to visit the suspect's home!
(Buster goes to Arthur's house and asks D.W. questions)
Buster: Did he bring home any big jingling bags? You know, absent-mindedly?
D.W.: BUSTER! YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT MY BROTHER! HE WOULD NEVER TAKE OTHER PEOPLE'S MONEY HOME!
Buster: Now calm down, D.W., I'm just checking out every possible....
D.W.: Hide it some place! But where? I say we dig up the lawn!
Buster: Thanks anyway, D.W. I'll know where to find you when I need you.
(Buster runs into Arthur)
Arthur: Oh hey, how's the investigation going?
Buster: Um, okay, I guess. Well, see you tomorrow!
Arthur: BUSTER, IF YOU DON'T FIND OUT WHO DID IT BY TOMORROW, I'LL MISS THE PICNIC!
D.W.: Excuse me, coming through! (has a shovel in her hands)
Buster (voiceover): The situation did not look good. Everything pointed to just one person.
Buster: ARTHUR! Suppose he was a criminal mastermind, and I never noticed.
(In a fantasy sequence, Arthur is swimming in a pool of quarters, laughing evilly)
(Back at Buster's apartment, Buster is feeling down, not paying attention to his dessert)
Mrs. Baxter: Only two helpings of dessert? Are you sure you're feeling okay?
Buster: I'll be in my room, Mom.
(Later that night, Buster investigates the scene even more on his desk)
Buster (voiceover): There was nothing to do but consider all the suspects. Was it Mrs. MacGrady? Mr. Morris? Or was it, ARTHUR?
Mrs. Baxter: Buster, what are you doing still up? It's 10:00 at night!
Buster: I gotta crack the case!
Mrs. Baxter: You need your sleep! You're not a robot!
Buster: Robot? THAT'S IT! MOM, I LOVE YOU! (hugs)
(The next day at Arthur's house....)
Buster: I figured it out! The quarters were stolen by an army of evil robots! They eat metal for fuel and nobody noticed that they can, can, transform into, into, ummmm, any shape. Oh gosh, it made so much sense last night. I know you're gonna miss the picnic today, and I know it's because I'm a bad detective. But I wanted to tell you that I think you're innocent, even if no one else does.
Arthur: Thanks anyway Buster.
Buster: Sorry I let you down. If I just had one more day!
Arthur: Forget it! You might be a lousy detective, but you're still a good friend!
(At school, all the kids line up next to the bus, but Arthur is sent by Mr. Ratburn into the school)
Brain: Poor Arthur.
Mr. Haney (on a megaphone): Uh, hello? Is this on? (feedback) Um, children, please proceed onto the school bus.
Buster: I just know the answer's somewhere! But I just can't think straight anymore!
Brain: I know how you feel. Sometimes when I'm working on a tough math problem, I feel like my brain's overflowing with data.
Buster: Overflowing? OVERFLOWING! THAT'S IT!
Brain: What's it?
Buster: Mr. Haney! I solved the crime! Come on!
(Buster and Mr. Haney rush back into the cafeteria kitchen)
Mrs. MacGrady: Buster, Mr. Haney, what are you doing here?!
Buster: Mrs. MacGrady, your brownie mix overflowed when you put it in the blender. Has that ever happened before?
Mrs. MacGrady: No, I guess I made too much.
Buster: There was too much because there was one extra ingredient... QUARTERS! (opens one of the brownies and quarters fly out)
Mrs. MacGrady: OH MY HEAVENS! I must've accidentally mixed in the bag of quarters along with the bag of flour! (opens another brownie and quarters fly out)
Principal Haney: Why, this means that.....
Buster (to all the students on the bus): HE'S INNOCENT! AND IT WAS ALL TO THE GREAT DETECTIVE WORK OF BUSTER BAX....
(Principal Haney takes the megaphone while all the kids cheer and run back inside the school to celebrate. Meanwhile, Arthur, back in the classroom, hears the mob just like in the beginning of the episode)
Kids: (chants): Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur!
Arthur: OH NO! (hides behind his desk)
(The doorknob slowly turns)
Kids: (chants): Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! Arthur! (cheer)
(The door opens and Buster comes out while the other kids rush in)
Buster: Arthur, I DID IT!
Arthur: Buster, you're the best detective I know!
(All the students carry Arthur & Buster out on their shoulders in celebration to the bus. Then, the bus leaves for the picnic as Principal Haney and Mrs. MacGrady wave goodbye.)
(Back in Buster's room....)
Buster: So, that's the story of my first case. It was tough, but I cracked it in the end. And as for Mrs. MacGrady, well, she's a little bit more careful these days.
(Mrs. MacGrady takes a cake out of the oven. Mr. Morris has a detector to see if anything is in it. There is nothing inside and Mr. Morris gives her a thumbs up.)
Mrs. MacGrady: COME AND GET IT! (winks)