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D.W. Read
DW S8E06
Age 4 (s2,[1] s3,[2] s10,[3] s17,[4] "Perfect Christmas"[5])

5 (s3,[6][7] "Beastly Birthday"[8])

Grade Preschool
Kindergarten ("First Day")
Gender Female
Animal Aardvark[9]
Birthday Six months after Arthur's birthday[10]
March 1st[11]
Eye color Blue (books only)[12] Black (TV show and Living Books games)
Hair color Moderate orange (books, TV show and Arthur's Birthday)
Light brilliant orange (Arthur's Teacher Trouble)
Moderate gamboge (Arthur's Nose)
Complexion Light gamboge (books and TV show)
Moderate orange (Arthur's Teacher Trouble)
Light orange (Arthur's Birthday)
Moderate gamboge (Arthur's Nose)
Favorite color Pink[13]
Residence Arthur's House (Elwood City)
Family Jane Read (mother)
David Read (father)
Arthur Read (older brother)
Kate Read (younger sister)

Thora Read (paternal grandmother)
Dave (maternal grandfather)
Gustav (maternal great-great-grandfather)
Bonnie (paternal aunt)
Sean (paternal uncle)
George (paternal cousin)
Ryder Read (cousin)
Bud (paternal uncle)
Loretta (paternal aunt)
Monique (paternal cousin)
Ricky (paternal cousin)
Loretta's daughter (paternal cousin)
Jessica (maternal aunt)
Richard (maternal uncle)
Cora (maternal cousin)
Lucy (maternal aunt)
Lucy's husband (maternal uncle-in-law)
Fred (maternal uncle)
David's brother (paternal uncle)
Claudia (aunt)
Hilary (aunt)
Ruthie (aunt)
Theodore Read (great-granduncle)
Jane's great-grandfather (maternal great-great-grandfather)
Jane's great-grandmother (maternal great-great-grandmother)
Matthew (maternal great-great-granduncle)
Thora's brother 1 (paternal granduncle)
Thora's brother 2 (paternal granduncle)
Thora's brother 3 (paternal granduncle)
Thora's father (paternal great-grandfather)
Thora's mother (paternal great-grandmother)
Thora's mother's great-uncle (paternal great-great-great-granduncle)
Job Police officer ("All Grown Up")
Book debut Arthur's Nose
Cartoon debut "Arthur's Eyes"
Voiced by Michael Caloz (s1 - s3)
Oliver Grainger (s4 - s6; "APC")
Jason Szwimer (s7 - s10; "A-IORnR"; Postcards from Buster Season 1)
Robert Naylor (s11 - s15; PfB s2 - s3)
Jake Beale (s16 - s17)
Andrew Dayton (s18 - s19)
Christian Distefano (s20 - s21)
Ethan Pugiotto (s22 - s25)
Nissae Isen (All Grown Up)
Kelly Greenley (LB: ATT; AB)
Mariella Miller (LB (UK dub): AB)
Elizabeth Telefus (LB: ARR; ACoA; AB (activities); DTPE)
Mary Kay Bergman (AMC, ATG, ARG)
Shoshana Bush (ACaA; AP, A1G, A2G, ASCC, APC)
Luciano Rauso (AMP)
Billy Ibbott (TAP)

Dora Winifred "D.W." Read is a preschooler who is the younger sister of Arthur and the older sister of Kate. She is the middle child in the Read family.

Physical appearance

Like the rest of her family, D.W. is an anthropomorphic aardvark. She has short, light brown slightly curled/waved hair in the form of a bob cut, which is up to her cheeks; plus, she has bangs. She wears a white long-sleeved blouse, a frilly sleeveless knee-length magenta jumper dress, light pink (in the TV show) or white (in the books and promotional images for the TV show) pantyhose and blue-and-cyan strapped Mary Jane shoes. In the earlier books, her Mary Jane shoes are black instead, and in the Living Books games, brown.

In the very first Arthur book, Arthur's Nose, D.W., along with Arthur and their parents, looked much more like a real aardvark, with a long snout, pointy ears, claws and a long tail. She also wore a checkered pink dress with short and puffy sleeves, and didn't have any legwear or footwear.

Alternate outfits

D.W. has many alternate outfits: Her footsie pajamas, pink frilly swimsuit, red polka dot dress (usually worn to formal occasions), her Arthur outfit, gymnastics suit, and much more. In some of the books, she wore pink overalls. In "D.W. Thinks Big," she wears solid pink dress to Lucy's wedding. In "Double Tibble Trouble," she wears dark green overalls. In the summer, she either wears a light-brown jumper and a white short sleeved T-shirt, or shorts and a blue T-shirt, like in "D.W.'s Deer Friend" when she goes camping and in "Best Enemies." She also wears her blue T-shirt with gray jeans. In the episode "D.W. All Fired Up," she wears an orange long-sleeved shirt under purple overalls, with light green pockets. In "D.W. Swims with the Fishes," she wears a one-piece ordinary pink swimsuit instead of her typical pink frilly swimsuit. In the TV movie special "Arthur's First Day," she is seen wearing the same outfit, but it is completely blue.

Pink stripes

In the books, her white blouse and pantyhose typically feature pink stripes not seen on the television show, likely due to the budget/time constraints of television animation. The pink stripes are also present in the CGI film "Arthur's Missing Pal." They are also often seen in promotional images, as well as most merchandise, such as stickers or plush toys.


Main personality

Despite her superficial appearance, D.W. is often annoying to Arthur, who often seems to dislike her (he considers her a pest and once warned Sue Ellen that her initials stand for "Disaster Warning"; D.W. later adopts DisasterWarning99 as her username for Virtual Goose). Sometimes, she takes pleasure in getting Arthur in trouble. Also, she holds Arthur accountable during the Virtual Goose episodes, and in "Arthur's Almost Boring Day." But occasionally, she seems to show that she truly loves her brother, and gladly works with Arthur whenever their family is in trouble.

Regardless of this, D.W. can often be downright cruel to her brother, such as: insensitively telling him that his family can get "a good dog" to replace Pal, who gets sick in "Sick as a Dog"; destroying a model plane Arthur worked on for weeks and blaming him for building it wrong instead of apologizing or showing remorse for it in "Arthur's Big Hit,"; telling their dad that he should "Put [Arthur] on the street first" because she thinks Arthur ruined his catering business in "Dad's Dessert Dilemma"; asking if only Arthur would be taken away in a scenario Jane presented in "D.W.'s Deer Friend". She also has no qualms about taking advantage of him for her own benefit. So it's unclear how genuine her love for her brother truly is in the end.

In the original books, D.W., while bratty and annoying, does not seem to exhibit any downright cruel behavior towards her brother like she does in the TV show. D.W. gets along well with most of her friends but often becomes very dramatic when things don't go her way, and has a tendency of being very bossy. She is known for her many short-lived obsessions and temper tantrums, two of her longest-lived obsessions being Mary Moo Cow and the song "Crazy Bus", both of which annoy Arthur to no end. She also has an imaginary friend named Nadine, whom she plays with and confides her problems to when no one else is around.

She hates her full name and prefers to have everyone call her "D.W." instead. However, after learning the family history behind her name in "The Rhythm and Roots of Arthur," she comes around to liking it, and in "D.W. and the Beastly Birthday" it is implied in Arthur's futuristic dream that she eventually goes by her first name "Dora" as she grows older. She is a drama queen and also seems to be very protective of Kate. She is also somewhat egotistical, as she has a tendency to self-identify as "[Arthur's] cute / adorable little sister" such as in "D.W.'s Blankie".

Being a preschooler, she often doesn't understand the definition of words and when she tries to use complex words for her age, such as "taxpaying" or "orphans", she accidentally turns them into words like "taxipaying"[14] or "organs".[15]. She also does not grasp important topics like where babies come from; at one time, she thinks that they come from a large baby store[16] despite her parents telling her. She has believed that teachers live in schools and that librarians live in libraries and is rather stunned when Mr. Ratburn, temporarily staying at the Read household, tells her that he has a home of his own. She expresses that the world seemed simple until she found out this fact.[17] Despite all this, she's been shown to be pretty smart for a kid her age, such as in "Arthur's Spelling Trubble" when she catches on that her mom is bribing her with ice cream to leave Arthur alone to study. Other examples include observing Arthur's gullibility about Ted Glass sending goons[18].

Despite not being able to adequately read, she is able to exaggerate her skills, and entertain the Tibble twins in "I'd Rather Read It Myself." She does the same thing in "Prove It."

D.W. has cephalophobia[19] (the fear of octopods and squids), and once endures a short-lived fear of fire drills (and anything else related to fire).[20] She is a picky eater, and once, she has a profound hatred of spinach.[21] She also does not like tomatoes and in preschool, they are allowed as her one thing she doesn't have to eat when offered.[22] She has a snowball in "D.W.'s Snow Mystery," which is stolen from the fridge (apparently by Nadine) and she frequently blames Arthur for its disappearance, which is a running gag. She does this continually until Arthur tries to make her feel better by giving her what looks like her snowball, at which point D.W. admits he couldn't have taken it from her[23]. Ironically, Nadine took the snowball out of fear that Arthur would eventually take it.

While she is pretty smart for a kid her age, D.W. can also be rather gullible and fairly easy to fool:

  • She believes that anything she sees on TV[24] that is enhanced to look good, is good. This is suggested in "D.W. Goes to Washington," where Arthur brings up the story about the family going to "Santa's Igloo", where you apparently share a sundae with "Santa", but in reality, you have to buy a sundae so you can share it with the guy in the Santa costume.
  • She is frequently tricked by the Tibble twins into doing silly things that get her in trouble[25], even though she has acknowledged many times that the Tibbles always lie.
  • Arthur and Buster are able to fool D.W. into thinking that green potato chips are fatally poisonous (though she eventually discovers the truth).[26]

She possesses a fondness for unicorns. She has a toy winged unicorn named Uni from the My Fluffy Unicorn franchise[27] and decorates her portion of the family Christmas tree with toy unicorns and troll dolls.[28] She would like to one day have a real unicorn and has a display of troll dolls in her room which appears throughout the series despite the fad peaking in the 1990s.[29] D.W., like many children her age, also has a fondness for plush toys in general. In "Arthur's Perfect Christmas", she wants the toy Tina the Talking Tabby for Christmas, but ends up receiving Quackers the duck instead. She also owns a teddy bear and a plush rabbit,[30] among other stuffed animals.

She is also known to host at least six episodes:

And, despite being gullible, there are many episodes where she gets exactly what she wants at the end of the episode, usually by tricking people such as Arthur:

There is some continuity with specific methods of this running gag. One example is the bowling ball that is used in an attempt to form the third-grade-only Parade Float Club which easily falls apart so she can take over. D.W. has kept the bowling ball and places it on her floor to keep Arthur from sneaking in after dark.[31]

Additionally, to make sure she can get a library book she wants, she pesters Ms. Turner. She asks in person, through emails, telephone calls, and even waits for her at night. D.W. even makes Arthur breakfast so they can get to the library before it opens.

Being a small preschool child, as well the middle child, she feels oppressed, and will stand up for herself as best she knows how. Her friends, such as the sophisticated Emily and the very rough Tibble Twins, exacerbate the situation. She often cites what she remembers about civil liberties when she wants to tell on Arthur or when Arthur gets something that she initially did not get to be a part of. ("Dad's Dessert Dilemma" and "The Chips are Down") She is also upset when Arthur and Cora are considered qualified to participate in a wedding simply for being an appropriate age. It turns out that neither are qualified to do so after all. D.W. says out loud that when she has a wedding of her own, she will not turn away people who want to help.[32]

D.W. is very brave. She eventually copes with her poison ivy from "Buster's Breathless." She also is very calm when she has to get stitches[33] and when she needs surgery on her ears.[34] She insists that Arthur go to the doctor after he receives a very large injury from a lima beans can.[35]

D.W. can be very creative and imaginative, as seen by her fabulous stories and dreams. Most notably is her imaginary friend, Nadine, who she speaks to from time to time to express her thoughts and come up with ideas. She imagines Arthur as a type of warlock or wizard in "D.W.'s Name Game." D.W. can tell stories that other people like to listen to.[36][37] D.W. expresses endless possibilities about what has happened to her Blankie[38]. She can write melodies such as in "Arthur and the Crunch Cereal Contest." D.W. wants to be a super hero (Super Sister, B.W. and Super Eargirl).

Past life

Baby D.W. in Mr

Baby D.W. wearing Mr. Read's cowboy hat

When D.W. was a baby, she originally had just clumps of hair, but in later seasons, she is depicted with a similar, but shorter, hairstyle. While D.W. was a baby, she wore a pink shirt, white disposable diapers, and pink socks. She had the crib that eventually become Kate's crib.

Future life

You Show Up Late and Then You Eat Potato Chips

An imagined older D.W. eating potato chips at Arthur's concert

Not much is shown about her future life, though in "D.W.'s Time Trouble," she and Nadine look older in one scene during D.W.'s dream where she wishes that she was older than Arthur. A fantasy sequence in "D.W.'s Name Game" depicts an older version of her attending a concert of Arthur's and disrupting it by loudly eating potato chips. Her appearance is a taller version of her present self.


Nine-year-old D.W. in Arthur's dream, "D.W. and the Beastly Birthday"

In Arthur's dream in "D.W. and the Beastly Birthday," he is transported four years into the future. D.W. is now nine and has been going by "Dora" since she was six. She wears a yellow sweater with a purple jacket, blue jeans and purple sneakers. "Dora" is written in Japanese across her sweater. She also wears a maroon headband and orange framed glasses, which she fiddles when she is telling a fib, just like Arthur does. Dora is friendly with Arthur, with whom she now shares many interests. Five-year-old Kate, however, seems downright afraid of her, despite being much easier to get along with than D.W. was at that age. Dora mentions that she skipped a grade.

In "All Grown Up", it is revealed that D.W. will be a police officer in the future. She will also remain friends with Bud.

Other media

In the Living Books computer games, she has a brown complexion and orange hair in Arthur's Teacher Trouble and a pale complexion and dark brown hair in Arthur's Birthday, and she wears a purple shirt instead of a white one while wearing a jumper dress with white pantyhose or overalls. This is likely because of color and tone restrictions during the 16-bit era of computers and software. In these two games, she is voiced by Kelly Greenley, who has been one of only three women to voice D.W. in any form over the course of the Arthur franchise. The other three are Elizabeth Telefus and the late Mary Kay Bergman, who voiced D.W. in the later games during the 32-bit era of computers and software (such as Arthur's Thinking Games), and Shoshana Bush in the educational games.

Over the course of the long-running TV series, D.W. has had eight different voice actors, all of whom have been boys:

In a 2021 interview, casting director Debra Toffan explained the decision to always use male voice actors for the character, stating that the "husky" sound of young boys' voices helped capture the essence of a "rough-and-tumble little girl" and that while female voices were auditioned for the character, they were found to be "too sweet." In looking back on the role, Michael Caloz stated that he had asked his mother that surely he must have thought it was weird at the time to play the role. She, however, told him that he had just taken it as another role to play and was really excited be on a television series based on a book that kids love.[39]

She has only been voiced by one female during the course of the TV series and that was by Nissae Isen, as the grown-up D.W. in the series finale.



D.W. lives with her family which consists of her father (David Read), her mother (Jane Read), her older and only brother (Arthur Read), and her baby sister (Kate).

  • Arthur Read: Usually, Arthur and D.W. are seen fighting with each other,[40] especially over their television time and when she annoys him, and Arthur often dislikes her because of her bratty behavior. Despite this, Arthur truly loves and cares for her; D.W. occasionally shows signs of caring for Arthur as well ("Grandpa Dave's Old Country Farm," "Arthur's Mystery Envelope," "Arthur's Knee," "Grandma Thora Appreciation Day," "Dad's Dessert Dilemma," "Mom and Dad Have a Great Big Fight," "Clarissa is Cracked," "Just Desserts," "The Big Dig," "Arthur's Family Feud," "Is There a Doctor in the House?"), but due to how mean-spirited and cruel D.W. often is towards him and how she has no problem taking advantage of him for selfish reasons, it's questionable whether it can be taken at face value. In the episode "Lost!," D.W. is very concerned over Arthur's well-being after she learned he was lost, and crawls in his bed at night to make sure he will not get lost again, although this could be considered out-of-character for her when compared to her usual behavior towards Arthur. A usual theme with Arthur and D.W. is that Arthur usually forgets to play with D.W. the games he promised her. It was noted that Arthur used to play with D.W. all the time until Arthur thought she liked "baby stuff." In "D.W. the Copycat," D.W. attempts to act exactly like Arthur so he will play with her more. She is naturally better than Arthur in many activities such as fishing,[41] storytelling,[42] and coming up with a tune for music,[43] which makes him quite jealous of her for her talent at such a young age. Conversely, D.W. has taken jealousy of Arthur at times such as him being a better finger painter in preschool[44], knowing more words than her[45], being able to confront the Tibble Twins[46], and even catching the chicken pox[47]. In most of her brother's fantasies, D.W. is often cast as an antagonist. Arthur angrily punches her in the arm for breaking his model plane in "Arthur's Big Hit." Sometimes, D.W. casts Arthur as an antagonist in her fantasies, such as in the story she told to the Tibbles in "I'd Rather Read It Myself."
  • Kate Read: Baby Kate is D.W.'s younger sister who looks up to D.W. and does favors for her regularly with Pal, e.g. finding her lost sock.[48] At the time Kate was born, D.W. was displeased when she had to share her room with her baby sister, and was planning various ways to get rid of her, and then she wanted to move away.[49] At one time, D.W. threatens to pinch Kate for taking away her toys and is sent to her room for ten minutes as a punishment.[50] Despite her initial disfavor of Kate, D.W. has come to deeply love and care for her little sister, and takes an active interest in her development.[51]
  • Pal: Arthur's dog Pal likes D.W., but D.W. regularly dislikes him and thinks he is dumb.[52] However, she sometimes treats him nicely, as they can be seen playing together in the theme song.
  • Spanky: Spanky is a pet parakeet that is briefly owned by D.W. She is deeply attached to him and holds a funeral following his death in "So Long, Spanky."
  • David Read: D.W. has a great relationship with her father. At times, David seems to favor D.W. more than Arthur; for example, in "Cast Away," he brings D.W. on a trip that is supposed to be for him and Arthur (this was, however, to make up for the fact that he wouldn't be able to take her on a trip that had been planned for the following week), and in "The Pageant Pickle," he takes Arthur to see D.W.'s play despite them both knowing that it will be boring.
  • Jane Read: D.W. has a good relationship with her mother, but it seems as though she is a bit more strict than her father. When D.W. misbehaves at a restaurant ("D.W., the Picky Eater"), is mean to Kate ("Go to Your Room, D.W."), or demands other people, especially her mom, to give her more allowance ("More!"), this can lead D.W. into trouble with her mom.
  • Thora Read: Grandma Thora is D.W.'s favorite relative. Compared to Arthur, D.W. visits Grandma Thora more often to spend time with her ("Arthur's Lucky Pencil"). Grandma Thora really adores her granddaughter, seeing her as a near carbon copy of herself when she was her age. D.W. enjoys a lot of things that Grandma Thora gives to her, such as Clarissa ("Clarissa is Cracked").
  • Theodore Read: D.W.'s great-grand uncle whom she is shown to get well along with in "The Rhythm and Roots of Arthur," playing horseshoe toss with him and beating him at it by a landslide. He is also the one who reveals to D.W. that she is named after her deceased great-grand aunt and that she had a lot in common with D.W.
  • Cora: In "D.W. Thinks Big," Cora kicks D.W. out of her own bed and at the same time scolds D.W. for having an ugly bedroom. She blames D.W. for making her break her own locket. D.W. is considered to be too young and therefore unqualified to participate in Lucy's wedding. As the ring bearer, Arthur is distracted and loses his grip. The ring flies into the organ, where it gets stuck. Cora backs out of retrieving the ring upon seeing how dirty the inside of the organ is, and D.W. crawls inside instead and rescues the ring. After doing this, she officially replaces Cora as the flower girl. Arthur gives D.W. the wedding ring and Lucy gives D.W. the flower girl crown, but Cora objects. D.W. and Cora have not appeared to have reconciled.


  • Emily Leduc: Emily is D.W.'s best friend, but at times Emily is very impolite. D.W. is often trying to compete with her. D.W. is willing to ruin Emily's plans for her own benefit, such as in "D.W. on Ice" and "All About D.W.." They are rivals in "Sue Ellen Gets Her Goose Cooked." In "Never, Never, Never", D.W. makes an announcement about giving her toys away but Emily refuses to play that game and thinks D.W. is being weird; after Timmy and Tommy destroy D.W.'s toys, she becomes hurt and Emily finds her crying and asks her what happened. D.W. replies with "Like you care!", which Emily finds really offensive. D.W. initially doesn't take it back, but later does apologize to Emily. In "More!", D.W. becomes jealous over kids having more money than her, including Emily, and feels it's not fair that she doesn't have a French Nanny, like Emily does. D.W. doesn't realize at first that she's causing trouble over trying to collect more allowance than anyone else- even when she's lying to her friends in class about being a rich princess, while using play money as a part of her deception. After being caught lying, she complains that just because she's short on money and doesn't get the same allowance, doesn't mean she's not as good as Emily is. She begins crying. Emily feels kind of bad for D.W. and doesn't want her feeling sad, but is worried that D.W. doesn't want to play with her anymore; she suggests that she make it up to D.W. by sharing her allowance with her so that they have the same amount, but only if D.W. considers to continue playing with Emily and being friends. D.W. immediately cheers up and is happy with what she's got, but decides on them just keeping their own allowances; D.W. admits that she shouldn't have been so aggressive with money and agrees to never do something like that again. In "The Secret About Secrets", D.W. has a secret about James splitting his pants. Emily wants D.W. to tell her her secret. D.W. becomes stressed, because Emily wants to know her secret, and James doesn't want anyone knowing about his embarrassing accident. D.W. tries to fight the nightmare out of her head. She stays home from school, claiming she has a dramatic sickness ("Secretitis"), and, with Grandma Thora's help, learns a way to deal with keeping a secret. Emily still wants to know D.W.'s secret, so she tells Emily the secret about Grandma Thora's way of getting rid of a secret. She hopes Emily won't tell anyone, and Emily promises she won't.
  • Tommy Tibble and Timmy Tibble: The Tibbles are D.W's friends, but they often try to compete with her and pester her. They are also known to lie to D.W., often misleading her into doing foolish things for their own amusement. D.W. often finds herself at odds with them, but they usually make up later. However, in "Prove It," D.W. shows that she is not above lying to them, either, as she sells them and other kids a false museum in an attempt to trick Arthur to take her to the real science museum. In "Never, Never, Never," after D.W. gives the twins all of her toys, they rough play and destroy them, so she begs them to give her toys back but they keep refusing to, even when she asks them nicely. In "Attack of the Turbo Tibbles," the Tibbles profile her as a villain. They strike her really hard in the face with a swing and make her cry really loudly, causing her to require stitches. They visit her in the hospital later and are horrified while D.W. is brave and they immediately apologize to her feeling extremely bad for their mistake and what they did. In "The Secret About Secrets," the Tibbles trick D.W. into thinking that they're actually calling their grandma by pretending that their toy is a cellphone, but they make her fall down and scrape her arm after she tries telling them that there's no secret, but when she checks her arm, they ask her if she's okay. They have significant roles in "Kiss and Tell." They are afraid of D.W. in "Buster's Breathless", when they mistake the calamine lotion she has on her face to treat poison ivy as a sign she has chicken pox. In "To Tibble the Truth", the Tibbles insult D.W. by saying she's too bossy and listens to Crazy Bus too much, which makes her mad. In "My Fair Tommy", D.W. receives a cupcake for the Good Behavior Award and Timmy and Tommy ruin it for her and make her mad. D.W. attempts to teach Tommy how to behave so he can win a cupcake for himself. Tommy begins to act nice and polite to everyone, and, when the time comes for the Good Behavior Award, Tommy is the winner and finally receives a cupcake like he wanted. The only problem is that he gets a vanilla cupcake when he had wanted a chocolate one; he gets mad about this, and, due to his attitude, gets no cupcake. In "Mind Your Manners", the Tibbles want to learn etiquette so they can go out to restaurants with their grandma. D.W. mentions that she's done teaching the Tibbles, but they learn how to control themselves without fighting.
  • James MacDonald: James is a friend of D.W.'s who is rather shy at times. D.W. tries to get him to kiss her in "Kiss and Tell," thinking she would become a princess. He eventually does kiss her, but not much comes of it, other than D.W. being slightly shocked. In "D.W. Unties the Knot," D.W. chooses James to be her imaginary groom on a whim. James splits his pants at school in "The Secret About Secrets" and only D.W. knows. He is highly embarrassed by this, and wants D.W. not to tell anyone about it. Emily wants D.W. to tell her secret to her since she's her best friend; keeping James's secret causes D.W. a lot of stress. She doesn't tell any of their classmates, but does tell her mother and, with Grandma Thora's help, lets it out in a conch shell. In "Night of the Tibble," D.W. is worried about James when he's invited to a sleepover with the Tibbles. When she's led to falsely believe that he died during the sleepover, she gets very upset and misses him, and is relieved to find out that he's actually alive.
  • Vicita Molina: Vicita and D.W. are next-door neighbors and occasionally play together. They are able to relate to each other easily because Vicita is only a few months younger than D.W. (She is "3 and 7/8" years old.) They generally get along, and Vicita often looks up to D.W., but D.W. can occasionally be bossy and dislikes it when Vicita excels at games.[53] In "Tales from the Crib," D.W. helps Vicita cope with moving out of her crib. In "Bleep," D.W. talks to Vicita over the phone about the swear word she learned from the teenager, but D.W. is actually trying to get Vicita in trouble for saying the word in front of her family; she spies from Arthur's window, and wants to watch her get caught herself, but the Molinas immediately catch D.W. trying to get Vicita in trouble after letting out the swear word and know all along how it all began with D.W. having something to do with it and that it was her idea. Though D.W. even said it to her mom herself anyway after being annoyed getting called down for dinner several times, so Vicita wouldn't have been the only one getting trouble anyway.
  • Binky Barnes: They become friends after D.W. eats a green potato chip and gets tricked by Arthur into thinking that green chips are poisoned in "The Chips are Down," and they continue being friends in "Revenge of the Chip."[54] She tells Binky about green chips being poisonous, and he is concerned because he himself had also recently eaten a green chip. They become friends after they decide to spend the last of their days together, only to learn later that their poisoning was nothing more than a prank. They remain friends and they have even done ballet together in "D.W., Dancing Queen," and have remained on good terms since. In "Arthur's Big Hit," Binky is in complete shock after hearing that Arthur hit her. In "Big Brother Binky," she gives Binky a unicorn for his recently adopted baby sister's Bai Jia Bei.
  • Nadine Flumberghast: D.W.'s imaginary friend. They talk to each other a lot and go on adventures with each other.
  • Francine Frensky: D.W. takes Francine's side in "Locked in the Library!" and gets invited to Francine's party after Lisa doesn't invite D.W. to her party in "D.W.'s Very Bad Mood." In "Arthur's Big Hit," Francine feels sorry for D.W. after Arthur punches her in the arm.
  • Bud Compson: The two often spent time together, such as plotting to try to find a way to ride a roller coaster together that they are told they're not tall enough to ride on in "D.W. & Bud's Higher Purpose." In "The Lost Dinosaur," D.W. gives Bud advice on where to find Rapty. Despite their friendship, however, D.W. is initially willing to have Bud take the blame for her accidentally breaking her father's old toy frog in "The Tattletale Frog," although she eventually feels bad about it and confesses her guilt. Bud moves to Oregon in "When Duty Calls," and D.W. is very upset. To assure D.W. sends him lots of letters, he leaves Rapty with her. In "The Rhythm and Roots of Arthur," D.W. says that she thinks of Bud as family.
  • Muffy Crosswire: D.W. and Muffy don't really interact, but Muffy is well known for her passion of gourmet meals. She tries to get D.W. to eat spinach in "D.W., the Picky Eater" When D.W. climbs a tree in "D.W. Blows the Whistle," Muffy finds help getting her down. In "D.W. Unties the Knot," Muffy helps D.W. plan her wedding even though she lies to her saying it's someone she made up's wedding. In " The Friend Who Wasn't There," Muffy walks up to D.W. and asks her who she's talking to; D.W. was talking to her imaginary friend, Nadine. Muffy considers D.W. as a replacement for Francine in "Muffy's New Best Friend," but they do argue over the Mutant Muck Monster and act bossy to each other. D.W. tries to bargain with Muffy on how much money she wants from her in order to get the Mutant Muck Monster in "Arthur's Toy Trouble." Muffy calls D.W. "an adorable little girl" and also tells her that she's doing great and that she can wear whatever she wants during George's movie in "The Director's Cut." In "The Great MacGrady," D.W., Muffy, and Arthur all work together in helping Mrs. MacGrady get well by cleaning her house up a little since she's sick. D.W. Bantam and Mary Alice Miller (who are actually D.W. and Muffy) live together, because Muffy is D.W.'s housemaid, and D.W. gets bossy with her, in "Fountain Abbey."
  • Sue Ellen Armstrong: D.W. teams up with Sue Ellen in "Sue Ellen Gets Her Goose Cooked." In "The Shore Thing," Sue Ellen explains what kelp is to D.W. when she gets her leg caught in some and helps her calm down. Sue Ellen reaches out to her in "Sue Ellen's Little Sister," but D.W. tortures her mercilessly. In "Sue Ellen Moves In," during an alien invasion imagination sequence by Buster, a flying saucer lands on a farm with three aliens disguised as Sue Ellen, 3rd Grade Male Rat, and D.W., exiting the flying saucer on an escalator laughing crazily, which kind of looks like D.W. and Sue Ellen bonding a little.
  • Cheikh Diouf: D.W. and Cheikh are good friends. D.W. meets Cheikh when he moves from Africa to Elwood City in the episode "In My Africa." D.W continues her friendship with Cheikh after he becomes a citizen in "Citizen Cheikh."
  • Alan Powers: Brain reads her a story in "The Perfect Brother," and she is shown to enjoy his company much more than she does Arthur's. They sing "In My Africa" in the episode of the same name together. They bond in the episode "Prove It" since they have a mutual love of science.
  • Ladonna Compson: When D.W. accidentally loses Larry in "Bunny Trouble," Ladonna helps her look for him. D.W. offers Ladonna one of her mom's sweaters after she takes off her Halloween spider costume. She also blends in with D.W. and Bud on the Halloween pranks in "Arthur and the Haunted Tree House." They first meet in "Based on a True Story" and Ladonna leaves again for Oregon in "When Duty Calls."
  • W.D. Merkle: D.W. and W.D. are good friends. They attempt to trick their parents into going home and think they do not like each other in "Best Enemies," only to become friends in the process. They both don't like to be called by their full name.
  • Buster Baxter: D.W. spends lots of time with Buster since he goes to Arthur's house often. Buster asks D.W. a few questions in "Arthur Accused!". D.W. sometimes mispronounces Buster's name as "Bus Stop", and he calls her "P.W." in "Buster's Back." He's also nice to her in "D.W., the Picky Eater" by letting her have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, even though it had spinach (which she hates) in it, making her throw up. Arthur and Buster trick D.W. into thinking the green chip she ate is poisonous in "The Chips are Down." In "The Rhythm and Roots of Arthur," Buster joins D.W. and Arthur on their vacation visiting family in Ohio. D.W. and Buster also sleep in the same room and she gets bossy with him, making up a dramatic password on her side and forcing him to look around the bedroom for lizards, which she's scared of. D.W., Arthur and Buster all go down to the beach in "Swept Away," but all complain together about the water being all crazy with the undertow, current and riptide washing away their sandcastles that they worked very hard on.
  • Hana: Hana and D.W. are good friends, even if Hana is older; Hana considers D.W. her "best little friend." They are both fans of Princess Platoon. In "D.W.'s New Best Friend", D.W. chooses Hana over Bud as her "new best friend", leaving him as her "middle friend", which hurts his feelings. D.W. kindly informs Hana of a concert featuring Hana's favorite pop star, and thinks Hana is going to get her a ticket for the concert. D.W.'s feelings are hurt when Hana tells her that she can't go, and only has tickets for her other friends because the concert is only for teenagers and not for kids.

D.W. books

In addition to the Arthur Adventure titles, D.W. has appeared in a number of titles in her own series, including:

Many of these titles were adapted for the television series, while some were initially aired as television stories and later adapted as books.

Disguises and aliases






Postcards from Buster

The Arthur Podcast


  • She is modeled after author Marc Brown's younger sisters,[55] Bonnie, Colleen, and especially Kim Brown.[56] Due to this, Brown has called her "triply lethal" and also hoped that kids watching the show wouldn't imitate her trick of dressing like her sibling and copying all his actions in "D.W. the Copycat."[57]
  • D.W. is unable to read and claims to not know the time even though she knows when Mary Moo Cow comes on TV and whenever New Year's starts, but it is possible she has gained a built-in clock to these skills or she is reminded. She has also been shown in some episodes to be able to read a little bit, such as the "Moo" in Mary Moo Cow, and in the book release Arthur's Reading Trick, she is able to read the book Green Eggs and Ham.
  • She can only write her own name.[58]
  • It is clearly known that D.W hates Bionic Bunny, but in the episodes "D.W. the Copycat" and "Arthur and the Crunch Cereal Contest," D.W. is watching and laughing. Though, in the former, she was most likely faking interest in the show as she was acting like Arthur in the episode. In the book Arthur's Promise, D.W. wears a Bionic Bunny costume and joins Arthur's Bionic Bunny Fan Club, though this possibly had more to do with wanting to spend time with her brother and his friends rather than an actual interest in Bionic Bunny.
  • In "Clarissa is Cracked," it is revealed that she closely resembles Grandma Thora as a young girl.
  • In the episode, "Postcards from Buster," it is revealed that she used to have an imaginary friend who was a winged pig named Snooter.
  • When Arthur says that D.W. doesn't like anything in "D.W., the Picky Eater," D.W. defiantly states that she likes: peanut butter and jelly, strawberries, chocolate (without nuts), birthday cakes, and chocolate ice cream.
    • D.W. also likes spinach (or at least claims to after unwittingly eating it in a pot pie), and yaprak dolmasi, a Turkish dish.
    • D.W. also ate without complaint both the turkey dinner served by Mr. Read in "Arthur's Perfect Christmas," as well as the "truly traditional" Christmas dinner that included such dishes as halva, puls, unleavened bread and roast lamb with turmeric.
    • In "That's MY Grandma!," she is delighted by Grandma Thora's kale cauliflower tart.
  • She knows how to whistle, as seen in "So Long, Spanky", and "Postcards from Buster".
  • She has the first speaking role in the Arthur series: the line "come with me" in "Arthur's Eyes."
  • According to the lyrics of her performance of "The First Noel," she cannot count any higher than four. However, in "D.W. Aims High," she says that she can count to ten, and in "You Are Arthur" and "Arthur Weighs In," it is implied she can count up to twenty. In the book D.W.'s Guide to Preschool, she states that she can count to seven.
  • Michael Caloz is D.W.'s voice actor in the opening theme song.
  • D.W. is named after Theodore's deceased sister and her great-grand-aunt Dora Winifred Read, as revealed in "The Rhythm and Roots of Arthur."
  • A default pose D.W. often takes is to have her her hands folded behind her back, which is also is one of the poses included on her pose modelsheet.[59]
  • She wears the same type of shoes as Muffy and Amanda, but with a different color.
  • She attends a Catholic church with her family.
  • Throughout the vast majority of the series, she is 4 years old;[60] however, online trading cards used to specify her age as 4¾.[13] Her fifth birthday is featured in "D.W.'s Perfect Wish" and "D.W. and the Beastly Birthday."
  • Beside during flashbacks, in some countries such as South Korea, she is called and known as Dora, as in the first part of her first name.

Show Quotes

- "Who's this weird guy with mom...Maybe mom's divorced! I'm waking her up right now, and demanding an explanation!"(Arthur's Eyes)

- "Francine, may I ask you a question...Why don't you go back to your own house, and stop bothering us!" (D.W.'s Very Bad Mood)

- "Well, at least my head doesn't look like a football with glasses!" (D.W.'s Name Game)

- "Everyone knows that my brother stinks---like a piece of yellow cheese. Me, I say that he's okay, as long as there's a breeze." (Arthur and the Crunch Cereal Contest)

- "You’re Bad!" (Arthur's Big Hit)

- "Being right is so cool." (Prove It).

- "I'm sick of sunshine---sun, sun! All the time sun! How about some rain around here? Is that to much to ask? Is it?!(Double Dare)

- "Big head kid, this is serious! You've ever heard of death? (The Chips are Down)

- "Hi, I'm D.W., Arthur's smarter sister." (The Rat Who Came to Dinner)

- "Hi! I'm D.W. You're lucky. Your mom lets you draw on your arms." (Arthur's Family Vacation)

- "This french fry is under-fried." (Muffy's New Best Friend)

- "...your goofy dog escaped." (Arthur's Lost Dog)

-"... I don't care if I'm 21 and i'm one giant scab, I'm going to learn to do this." (D.W. Rides Again)

- "Dead? When will he stop being dead? (So Long, Spanky)

-"Don't worry. If you lose, I bet mom and dad will let you live in the garage." (Arthur's Spelling Trubble)


  1. "What does D.W. have to be upset about? She's only four years old!" — Arthur to Francine, "D.W.'s Very Bad Mood"
  2. "I'm almost four and a half. I can take care of myself." — D.W. to Jane, "D.W. All Fired Up"
  3. "I'm only four, and I can already count to ten." — D.W. to Arthur and David, "D.W. Aims High"
  4. "I can't believe it takes a four-year-old girl to suggest picking straws." — D.W. to Arthur and his friends, "Just the Ticket"
  5. "I've only had four Christmases in my whole life." — D.W. to Arthur, "Arthur's Perfect Christmas"
  6. "You know, turning five is a very big step." — Emily to D.W., "D.W.'s Perfect Wish"
  7. Arthur reads "five-year-old Dora Winifred Read eagerly gobbled up a green chip one afternoon, only to be informed by her practical joker brother, Arthur, that green chips were deadly." in the Elwood City Times referring back to the events of the third season episode "Revenge of the Chip"
  8. "On a girl's fifth birthday, it should be super sunny with big puffy clouds." — D.W., referring to the weather on the morning of her birthday, "D.W. and the Beastly Birthday"
  9. "the Read family appear at the front of the animal dictionary. They're aardvarks"
  10. "Your birthday's not for six months!" — Arthur to D.W., "Arthur's Birthday."
  11. "D.W.'s Perfect Wish"
  12. See File:D.W.'s Guide to Preschool 3.JPG, for example.
  13. 13.0 13.1 Trading Cards
  14. "More!"
  15. "Mom and Dad Have a Great Big Fight"
  16. "D.W.'s Time Trouble"
  17. "The Rat Who Came to Dinner"
  18. "Arthur vs. the Very Mean Crossing Guard"
  19. "D.W. All Wet"
  20. "D.W., All Fired Up"
  21. "D.W., the Picky Eater"
  22. D.W.'s Guide to Preschool
  23. "Return of the Snowball"
  24. "D.W. Unties the Knot"
  25. "Never, Never, Never"
  26. "The Chips are Down"
  27. "D.W. Tricks the Tooth Fairy"
  28. "Arthur's Perfect Christmas"
  29. "Staycation"
  30. D.W. The Big Boss
  31. "D.W. Tricks the Tooth Fairy"
  32. D.W. Thinks Big .
  33. Attack of the Turbo Tibbles
  34. Operation: D.W.!
  35. Arthur's Knee.
  36. D.W. Tale Spins.
  37. I'd Rather Read It Myself.
  38. D.W.'s Blankie
  39. White, Abbey (July 7, 2021). 'Arthur' Casting Director Reveals Why D.W. Read Has Only Ever Been Voiced by Young Boys. Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved on July 8, 2021.
  40. "Arthur's Family Feud"
  41. "Cast Away"
  42. "D.W. Tale Spins"
  43. "Arthur and the Crunch Cereal Contest"
  44. D.W.'s Time Trouble
  45. D.W.'s Name Game
  46. Arthur Babysits (episode)
  47. Arthur's Chicken Pox (episode)
  48. "The Great Sock Mystery"
  49. "D.W.'s Baby"
  50. "Go to Your Room, D.W."
  51. "Baby Steps"
  52. "Arthur's Lost Dog"
  53. "Arthur and Los Vecinos"
  54. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named The Chips are Down
  58. "D.W.'s Library Card"
  59. D.W. Modelsheet.JPG - second model from the top left.
  60. "Arthur is eight years old and D.W is four."