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"I'd Rather Read It Myself"
Season/Series: 3
Number in season: 2b
Original Airdate: United States November 17, 1998[1]
Canada September 7, 1999[2]
Germany February 22, 2002[3]
Written by: Joe Fallon
Storyboard by: Robert Yap
"D.W. All Fired Up"
"Arthur Goes Crosswire"
Read transcript

"I'd Rather Read It Myself" is the second half of the second episode in the third season of Arthur.


Tired of the Tibble twins always being ahead of her, D.W. tries to convince them that she's already learned how to read.


The episode starts with Arthur telling the audience about how Timmy and Tommy Tibble drive D.W. crazy. He explains about how they want to prove they're better at everything. The Tibbles said to D.W. that they can scream louder than D.W. D.W. said she did not care, but the Tibbles ignored her and started their screaming contest with each other. Plus, they could ride two-wheeler bicycles before D.W. could, and they claimed they could even tell time (though in reality, they were just making it up). If only D.W. could be the first to do something before the Tibbles...

I'd Rather Read It Myself

The Tibble Twins build a Burmese tiger trap (or, as they call it, a "Burma-ese tiger trap"), in their front yard. using a peanut butter cup as bait. It manages to successfully capture Mr. Haney, although the twins are disappointed that he "broke" their trap, and Grandma Tibble is not that pleased that the Tibbles dug such a deep pit in her yard. Now she will have to go and buy sod, while the Tibble Twins stay at the Read family's house for the afternoon.

D.W. plans to keep the twins distracted with playing soccer, but just as she says this, a thunderstorm begins, rendering playing outside out of the question. D.W. will have to find some way of peacefully entertaining them inside. She suggests they color, but the Tibbles just ruin her favorite coloring book by scribbling in it really fast, which upsets her. Arthur is up in his room, doing 207,000 math problems for homework, and D.W. goes to beg him for advice, since he has had experience dealing with the twins as a babysitter. Arthur says the last time he babysat them, he found something that worked: telling them a story. That could work for D.W., except for the fact that she can not read anything. But then, neither can the Tibbles.

D.W. returns to the den, where the Tibbles are tracking mud on the ceiling. She announces to the Tibbles that she will read to them, but the Tibbles say that that is impossible. Anything D.W. can do, they can do; they cannot read, and neither can she. The Tibbles find something for her to read, to prove (or better yet, disprove) her claim. They point to the nameplate on the television in the den. The manufacturer of this television is "Elbozonic" according to the nameplate. D.W. claims that it just says "television," but the Tibbles cannot prove she is right, since they cannot read either. However, they are still not completely convinced. They call her bluff and find a book in the den for her to read to them: "Little Red Riding Hood," with lots of illustrations, so they will know if she's reading it right. D.W. sounds uncomfortable with that, and digs a deeper hole by picking a book that has all words in and no pictures. The Tibbles are unsure, but D.W. tells them not to worry. They sit down, and D.W. starts reading. She flips to a random place in the book's middle, and starts to "read".

The Story of B.W.[]

This is the story of... B.W.! (The Tibbles are suspicious at first, as it is close to "D.W.," but remain quiet so D.W. can "read" the rest.)

B.W. was a "smart, great, perfect girl", who was a princess, a genius, and a cool person. She was too polite to brag, however, and she had her own pony as well; it would sleep in her room with her, and her parents were cool with that. Just one thing keeps B.W.'s life from being perfect: her big brother (Arthur), whom is also a "mega transformalizer". He can turn into a robot form, an airplane, a helicopter, even a bean can! He also has an awful, evil partner: Bust-trantor, a large robot (Buster) who is always hungry and loves eating. Their most recent crime: stealing the world's most valuable snowball! B.W. is also an agent with a transporting car, and enlists in the aid of her deer friend Walter, who zaps her to her brother's hideout. Once there, she manages to escape her brother and Bust-trantor by doing flips on a balance beam. She begins to escape on her two-wheeler bicycle, and surprises the two robots that she can also ride a "no-wheeler," by jettisoning the wheels from her bike and flying off on it, successfully making it over the octopus-infested lake.

That night, B.W. goes to a fancy restaurant with her parents, avoiding eating the poisoned spinach as it turns everyone, even her parents, into "spinach heads!" To cure them, she must use the Power Ring of Power, which is being used at her Aunt Lucy's wedding. B.W. manages to retrieve the ring from a pipe organ before it ends up falling inside the center of the Earth. Without her magic blankie, however, the ring is powerless, so she enlists the help of Secret Agent Nadine, who is so secret, she can turn invisible. They trace the blankie into the super-confusing All In One Mart, which is built like a maze, and are initially lost, but B.W. finds what appears to be her lost snowball, which can show the way out. They locate the blankie in what looks like Crazy Bus, with Pickles the Clown in the driver's seat. B.W. is sure things are all worked out, but the "Crazy Bus" turns out to be her transforming robot brother, and Pickles is Bust-Trantor in disguise! B.W. is captured. Her brother admits that he put the snowball in the freezer section of All-in-One Mart. They have successfully tricked B.W., but luckily, her faithful eagle Spanky comes to the rescue, pushing the big brother's red button, which makes him turn into a big cage that traps the bad guys and makes B.W.'s brother cry in defeat. In doing this, Spanky sacrificed himself, and he dies. In Washington D.C., B.W. and her good friend the President of the United States hold a big military funeral for the brave eagle.

Back in reality, just after D.W. "reads" that, the doorbell rings, and Grandma Tibble is back to pick up the twins. When D.W. leaves the room, the twins tell Arthur how D.W. read to them from one of his books, and asks if they can borrow it. Arthur says sure, and they do so, telling D.W. that Arthur gave them permission. Once they leave, Arthur tells D.W. they will find out the truth, but D.W. doesn't mind, saying for one day, she could do something they couldn't do. At the Tibble's house that night, Grandma Tibble begins to read to the twins where D.W. left off, but the book is actually about Leonardo da Vinci! The Tibble twins figure that the book is magic, and that every time you read it, it tells a different story!






  • Arthur says he has 207,000 math problems for homework from Mr. Ratburn; this is an insane amount of work even for Mr. Ratburn to pass out. It is impossible to complete them by the next morning. This is most likely an exaggeration.
  • Spanky as D.W.'s pet bird appears in the story she's telling, except he's not a parakeet as he was in "So Long, Spanky;" he's an eagle.
  • In the wedding scene that is based upon D.W. Thinks Big, the bride who may or may not resemble Lucy isn't shown at the wedding and only the look-alike of Lucy's husband was shown there; and the Cora-like girl was being the ring-bearer instead of any male, although being a ring-bearer is a job for males.
  • In the scene where the Crazy Bus is actually the evil Arthur-like mega-transforbalizer, the Blankie is shown to be blue, although it is pink in all of its other appearances.
  • D.W. states in the story she made up that the lake had 7,000 octopuses in it, but it was a giant sea creature with eleven tentacle legs, which is three more legs than an actual octopus has. However, it might be likely that she cannot precisely determine multiple quantity due to her young age.

Episode connections[]

Cultural references[]



  • The book is about Leonardo da Vinci.
  • This episode contains numerous references to Japanese anime and action cartoon shows:
    • Arthur's ability to transform into whatever he pleases in D.W.'s story may be a parody of Transformers.
    • "Bustrantor" is based on Gigantor, the American adaptation of the Japanese anime Tetsujin 28-gō, with similar suit and theme music.
    • Walter in this episode has the role of 7-Zark-7, who is a dispatcher on outpost which controls the Transformations by speaking "3, 2, 1, Transmute!" This saying is identical to Battle of the Planets, a 1978 TV series which is inspired from a 1972 - 1974 and 1977 - 1978 series called Gatchaman. "3, 2, 1, Transmute!" was originally spoken as "Bird, Go!" and "Bird, Out!" to activate and deactivate the transformations, respectively. The phrases were spoken in English in the Japanese audio and in the 2005 - 2006 dub.
    • Battle of the Planets would itself inspire Captain Planet and the Planeteers, which "The Power Ring of Power" is inspired from. The rings are able to control parts of the Earth. The name "Power Ring of Power" itself is derived from Captain Planet's phrase "The power is yours!".
    • The phrase 3-2-1 would also subsequently be used for 3-2-1 Contact.
  • The brand name Elbozonic on Arthur's family's TV is likely a play on the electronics brand name and manufacturer Panasonic.


  • When D.W. says that she can read before the Tibbles, there is no table. But when she says that she has read books since last Thursday, a table full of books appears beside her.
  • In the beginning when D.W. and the Tibble Twins were telling time, the Tibble Twins' color of the skin kept changing in different scenes.

Production notes[]

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

Home Video[]



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