|"Arthur and Los Vecinos"|
|Number in season:||5B|
|Original Airdate:|| October 22, 2001|
January 9, 2002
|Written by:||Cusi Cram|
|Storyboard by:||Patricia Atchison|
"The Boy Who Cried Comet"
Mr. Sipple from next door is moving away and Arthur wonders—who will be the new neighbors? When Alberto and his family settle in, Arthur makes a new friend and learns about a different culture ... and about a comic book character named Conejo Bionico, which is Spanish for Bionic Bunny!
The episode starts with movers taking items out of Mr. Sipple's house as Arthur and D.W. watch. Mr. Sipple thanks Arthur and D.W. for being good neighbors, and he gives them Thelma, a singing fish on a plaque. D.W. says goodbye as Mr. Sipple gets in the moving truck, and Arthur explains that he didn't always like Mr. Sipple. He cooked fish late at night, and sang loudly in the shower, but at least they will have Thelma to remember him by. D.W. claims Thelma as her pet while Arthur rolls his eyes.
Arthur and D.W. are having a staring contest outside the house when Arthur sees Pal barking at a strange dog, who then licks D.W. A man walks down the street and explains that his dog, Amigo, is harmless, before introducing himself and his family as Arthur and D.W.'s new neighbors, the Molinas. He says that he has a 13-year-old son named Alberto and a 3-year-old daughter named Vicita, and tells Arthur and D.W. that they, along with their parents, are invited to dinner next weekend. D.W. is excited to meet someone younger than her, while Arthur is afraid that Alberto will have nothing in common with him.
Arthur and Buster spy on Alberto through binoculars, seeing that Alberto is practicing Kendo. Buster thinks that this is cool, although Arthur is afraid that Alberto will give him a wedgie. Meanwhile, D.W. decides that she wants to play Tower of Cows with Vicita. D.W. imagines teaching Vicita how to ride a bike, be a good younger sister (pinning her mistakes on her older brother), and play games.
The Read family go to the Molinas' house, with Arthur complaining about being forced to wear a suit and bow tie, and D.W. upset about not being able to bring Thelma. Ramón welcomes them in and serves them food. Vicita brings D.W. up to her room to play Pick-Up-Ticks, although she explains and wins the game so quickly that D.W. doesn't have time to react. Back downstairs, Ramón tells Alberto that he should show Arthur his room. When walking upstairs, Arthur imagines Alberto's room having pictures of bands, "or worse, girls!" Alberto's bedroom turns out to be full of Bionic Bunny merchandise, much to Arthur's delight.
Back downstairs, Jane and Mrs. Molina are talking about a glass bird, Arthur and Alberto are playing chess, David and Ramón are having a discussion, and Vicita and D.W. are playing Hot Tomato. Vicita wins again, and D.W. asks her mom if they can go home. When they leave, Alberto gives Arthur a Spanish Bionic Bunny comic. As he walks home, Arthur comments that Alberto is "so cool!"
The next day, D.W. is trying to teach Vicita to flip on a trampoline, although Vicita flips perfectly on her first try. Arthur gives Alberto one of his Bionic Bunny Walkie-Talkies. However, Arthur constantly calls to ask what the Spanish words in his Bionic Bunny comic mean in English, to Alberto's annoyance.
D.W. and Vicita are playing Tower of Cows at the Molinas' house. Vicita manages to stack the cows perfectly in less than eight seconds, before D.W. even teaches her how to play. D.W. gets mad and tells Vicita that she should have let her explain the game before perfecting it.
Arthur is walking Pal on the street when he notices the Molina family having a party in their backyard. Arthur goes to his house and announces the party, and says that he is going to attend it. Jane tells him that the party is probably private, and D.W. claims that he wasn't invited because he annoys Alberto. Arthur initially says, "I don’t bug Alberto!" but then wonders "Do I?" D.W. is angry at Vicita because "some people are so bossy!" David smells chicken cooking and wants to ask Ramón which seasoning he's using before Jane quickly distracts them from the party.
Arthur plays basketball in front of his house, and Alberto walks up to him, holding a bag. Alberto reveals that the party was a house-warming party with his grandparents and cousins, and he tells Arthur that the bag has some leftover chicken from the party. Alberto also has a gift for Arthur: a Spanish-English dictionary, so Arthur will learn to translate the Spanish words in the Bionic Bunny comic book into English and stop calling Alberto.
D.W. is taking Thelma for a walk by tying a rope around her, when she notices Vicita screaming and yelling during a meal. She is freaking out because her peas are in her mashed potatoes. D.W. quickly separates the food with a dinner knife from Mrs. Molina, claiming that green and white foods can never touch each other. This calms Vicita down, and she eats her food. D.W. explains to Vicita that she has had the same experience before, and Vicita excitedly asks D.W. to also teach her how to blow bubbles, and whistle, and tie her shoes...
The episode ends with Pal and Amigo barking at the moon — with Pal teaching Amigo to bark in English, and Amigo teaching Pal to bark in Spanish.
- This episode marks the first appearance of the Molina family.
- This is the first episode written by Cusi Cram.
- When fully translated to English, the title reads, "Arthur and the Neighbors."
- The Justin Bradley version of this episode story is available on the VHS and DVD editions of Arthur's Family Fun, and when listening with the SAP audio narration from PBS.
- In the introduction, D.W. sings a version of “Old MacDonald” while Mr. Sipple sings “Jack Was Every Inch a Sailor”.
- In the swimming title card, Arthur says "¡Hola!" which is Spanish for "Hello!"
- When first visiting the Molinas, Arthur remarks, “The only people who wear bow ties are nerds and waiters and that science guy on TV.” This is a reference to Bill Nye The Science Guy.
- Mr. Molina serves ceviche, a South American dish made of raw fish with spices.
- Mr. Molina’s café is named Café con Leche, after the Spanish/South American version of milk coffee.
- When Arthur goes up the stairs to Alberto's room, he speculates on what it would be like, assuming there would be posters of bands. In his fantasy, one of the posters reads “Mute Cheetah,” a parody of the band “Def Leppard.”
- The hot tomato is a parody of “Hot Potato.”
- Confuse the Goose and Tower of Cows from "Sue Ellen Gets Her Goose Cooked" are mentioned.
- D.W. wants to teach Vicita how to ride a bike. She learned how to ride her bike in "D.W. Rides Again."
- Vicita teaches D.W. how to play Pick-Up-Ticks, which returns again in "He Said, He Said."
- Mrs. Read mentions having a crystal bird like Mrs. Molina's. It appeared in “Arthur’s Perfect Christmas”.
- If one looks closely as the camera pans to the right while Vicita is bouncing on the trampoline, it can be seen that the ripple effect on the trampoline stops.
- The matte line of the background is clearly visible on the right when the Read family first arrive at the Molina residence.
- The Hot Tomato goes from 36 seconds to just three seconds when it is in a closeup.
- Just before the Hot Tomato scene, Arthur and Alberto are playing chess. Alberto's line "Checkmate!" is omitted in current PBS reruns (Mark Rendall redub), but you can still hear Arthur's sigh of defeat. If listening with the SAP audio narration, "Checkmate!" is retained.