|"Buster's Book Battle"|
|Number in season:||8a|
|Original Airdate:|| May 8th, 2013|
April 19, 2013
|Written by:||Jon Greenberg|
|Storyboard by:||Gerry Capelle|
"Brain's Biggest Blunder"
"On the Buster Scale"
Lakewood Elementary has just instituted IRP; a program where kids can earn points (and prizes!) for reading. Buster's thrilled and gets to work straight away! But will he earn enough points for a skateboard?
At the school carnival, Arthur, Francine, and Binky all try to knock down the bottles with balls, but they all fail. Buster then shows up, and asks what they're doing, and he knocks the bottles over and wins a giant panda plush just by crunching a pretzel. Buster comments that "you can win prizes for doing anything these days".
After the title card, a less-than-thrilled Mr. Ratburn tells the class that Lakewood Elementary is instituting the Independent Readers Project (IRP), a system which allows you to take optional computerized quizzes on books that you read. You can earn points, and at the end of two weeks, these points can be redeemed for prizes. Buster is especially intrigued at the prospect of prizes, and he gets to work right away.
After reading Goodnight Universe and sixteen other books the night before, Buster earns 23 IRP points the next day at school. However, Francine earns 35 points for reading a book series called Loki Benediktssen and the Teenage Aesir. Buster also learns that you can win a skateboard for earning 500 points. Wanting to earn more points, Buster decides to start reading the series.
After not being able to finish the book, Buster has a dream that night where he and Loki Benediktssen are about to be attacked by the Fenrir Wolf. Buster then decides he doesn't like the book, because "when it's not boring, it's terrifying!". Buster then wakes up from his dream and screams.
After getting fewer IRP points than Francine did for incorrect answers the next day at school, Buster decides to give up on IRP altogether.
That night, while Buster is playing video games instead of reading books, Buster's mom Bitzi gives him a manuscript of City of Droids, a book about a crime-fighting cyborg detective named Detective Kilgore that Bitzi's co-worker from the newspaper made. Buster is entranced by the story and reads it non-stop.
At school the next week, Buster asks Mr. Ratburn how many points he can get for reading City of Droids, but he is disappointed to learn that IRP has no quiz for it, or several other books for that matter. Later, at The Sugar Bowl, Buster ends up taking Francine's advice to read Loki again, despite the fact that he doesn't like that series.
That evening, Detective Kilgore and Loki themselves appear in Buster's room as a metaphorical dream sequence, attempting to convince Buster to read their books, but results in a battle with Kilgore getting the better of Loki and forcing him to retreat. Detective Kilgore then tells Buster that it's up to him to choose what to read, and Kilgore flies off into the distance.
The next day at school, having only received 38 IRP points, Buster chose City of Droids over Loki, and gets a crazy straw. Francine, who got 500 IRP points, gets the skateboard, but finds out that it is actually much smaller than advertised, irritating her. Francine then decides that she is sick of Loki, and never wants to read it again. Meanwhile, Buster gives Arthur his book to read, and Detective Kilgore gives Buster a thumbs-up. The episode then finishes.
- Big Kid 1
- Big Kid 2
- 3rd Grade Male Rabbit
- Unknown Female Cat (Number 4)
- Molly MacDonald
- George Lundgren
- Prunella Deegan
- Fern Walters
- Binky Barnes
- Jenna Morgan
- The Brain
- Sue Ellen Armstrong
- Maria Pappas
- Ladonna Compson
- Buster mentions to Arthur that he read sixteen other books besides Goodnight Universe. This is a reference to the season that this episode takes place in, season 16.
- There's no way Buster would have been able to take a quiz for City of Droids, because the book was never even published.
- A Woogle can be seen in the IRP prizes flyer.
- Loki Benediktssen and the Teenage Aesir is a parody of Percy Jackson & the Olympians.
- The Fenrir Wolf is a real creature from Norse mythology.
- Some books IRP doesn't conduct quizzes for include Treasure Island and Watership Down.
- One of the books Buster reads at the start of the IRP program is Goodnight Universe, a parody of Goodnight Moon.
- IRP is kind of like "AR" which stands for Accelerated Reader, which you can also take tests on.
- City of Droids may be similar to Caves of Steel, the first book in Isaac Asimov's robot trilogy.
- One of Kilgore's arm attachments resembles a lightsaber from Star Wars.
- The 9 Story logo appears at the top right of the screen when it zooms in on The Sugar Bowl.
- Main article: Buster's Book Battle/Gallery