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"Buster Hits the Books"
Season/Series: 2
Number in season: 11B
Original Airdate: United States April 6, 1998[1]
Canada September 7, 1998[3]
United Kingdom July 20, 1999[2]
Germany February 7, 2002[4]
Written by: Joe Fallon
Storyboard by: J. O'Neill &
I. Tankushev
"D.W.'s Deer Friend"
"Arthur's Faraway Friend"
Read transcript

"Buster Hits the Books" is the second half of the eleventh episode in the second season of Arthur.


For the first time in his school career, Buster has to actually read a book—and he has one week.


Arthur shows the viewers many different kinds of books, from fiction to non-fiction books and from picture books to chapter books. He soon runs into Buster, who asks, "Who cares about books?," making Arthur gasp in horror.

Buster Hits the Books

Arthur, Buster, Brain and Fern are discussing what books they are each reading for their book reports that are due the next day. However, while everyone else is doing their reports, Buster just watches TV.

The next day, Arthur asks Buster what he did his book report on. Buster explains that his report was on Pa-Kanong: Creature with the Big Face. When Binky passes by and explains that he saw the movie, Arthur is shocked, realizing that Buster did his book report on a movie. Buster dismisses Arthur's concern, believing that all movies come from books. When he realizes that they don't, he panics.

After Ms. Turner confirms there is no book version of the movie, Buster briefly considers running away instead of facing Mr. Ratburn. Buster does choose to talk to Mr. Ratburn, who allows Buster to turn in his report at the end of the week so that he won't get penalized.

At lunchtime, Buster confesses that he has never actually read a book before. His friends try to get him to read a few books, such as "The Jolly Jollisters", "Sam and the Sandwich Company", and "I Don't Want to Go to Afkaphazoom" but Buster gives up, finding each book boring.

Arthur eventually gives him two books, one about the color blue and the other book about Robin Hood. Buster starts to read the book about blue but finds it too tedious for his liking. However, he takes interest in reading Robin Hood and reads that instead.

The next day at school, he tells Arthur that he didn't finish his book report because he spent most of the night before reading Robin Hood, because he found it to be really exciting. Buster turns in his report (albeit with a cliffhanger ending), and he and Arthur read more of Robin Hood.







  • D.W. is absent from this episode, although she appears in the title card.

Cultural references[]

Episode connections[]

  • Buster mentions that his dad is a pilot. In the following episode, Arthur's Faraway Friend, Buster leaves for a couple of months to travel with his dad.
  • There is apparently a Scare-Your-Pants-Off Club TV show now. Buster mentions that instead of reading the SYPOC books, he watched the TV episodes.
  • Buster has to study in Buster Makes the Grade.
  • Arthur mentions he had to pay for a broken window out of his allowance (he is probably talking about the window in the front door to his house that he broke during the introduction of Arthur the Wrecker).


  • At the start, Mr. Ratburn can be seen writing on the blackboard with his left hand, although he is normally right-handed.
  • The equation Mr. Ratburn is writing on the blackboard at first doesn't equal zero (36÷3x24-13+20÷14+3-20x10=40.71428), but when he talks about the book reports being due tomorrow morning, the numbers and signs have changed, and it does equal zero (14-3-10+20-14+3-20+10).
  • When Buster watches TV at night, the chair he sits in is purple, but when Buster is shown again during the day watching TV in the same room the chair is now a different color and plaid. Not to mention it's the same chair he was sitting in playing his video game when he was traveling with his dad in "Arthur and the Square Dance".
  • In "I Don't Want to Go to Afkaphazoom", the narration mentions "a piece of the moon" joining the main characters on the car ride, but there are actually two crescent-shaped pieces of the moon instead of a single piece.
  • When Arthur says “Oh no, he [Buster] gave up again!”, Arthur’s eyes turn into dots when he looks at Francine.

Production Notes[]

  • This is the first episode to use the Stampede as a title card.

Home Video[]




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