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"Just Desserts"
Season/Series: 5
Number in season: 9A
Original Airdate: United States November 20, 2000[1][2]
Canada January 11, 2001[3]
Written by: Peter K. Hirsch
Idea by: Bruce Akiyama
Storyboard by: Stéphanie Gignac
"Bitzi's Beau"
"The Big Dig"
Read transcript

"Just Desserts" is the first half of the ninth episode in the fifth season of Arthur.


Overindulging in desserts leads to a night of very strange dreams for Arthur.


Arthur is shown reading a book called Fairy Tales. He tells the viewers that these [fairy tales] "are some of the weirdest, scariest, most exciting stories ever" and adds that they include "talking pigs" and "two-headed trolls" as examples before closing the book, stating that he didn't always like fairy tales and used to think they were really "babyish." Arthur then opens another book and begins: "Once upon a time, there was a boy named Arthur, whose dad was an amazing cook..."

David finishes decorating a cake. Arthur wants to have a taste, but his father tells him no because it's for a wedding that he and Jane are catering for. He then tells Arthur that Grandma Thora might make him some of her chocolate chip cookies, which Arthur fears. During school, in Mr. Ratburn's class, Arthur daydreams about the wedding cake. After school, Arthur tells Buster about the cake his father made and that Thora is cooking. Buster suggests that Arthur buy some candy so he doesn't have to eat Thora's meals.

Arthur buys some candy from Gula's Candy Emporium and eats them after he gets home. To his surprise, Grandma Thora prepares the food their father left. When D.W. comes in, Thora tells them that if they both clean their plates, she has a big surprise for them. After dinner, Arthur and D.W. speculate on what they think the surprise is. Grandma Thora reveals that the surprise is some slices from the wedding cake David made. Arthur feels his stomach gurgling, so he chooses to take a tiny bite from it.

Instead, he eats two whole slices of cake and gets an upset stomach. Thora then asks Arthur if he would like her to read a story to cheer him up: "That’s what I used to do when you had an upset stomach." D.W. agrees with that idea. Arthur doesn't want to hear fairy tales; in his opinion, they're boring. While he suggests that she read a Scare-Your-Pants-Off Club book, Thora plans to read from the book of fairy tales, saying the stories in the fairy tale genre are just as exciting and frightening as the Scare-Your-Pants-Off Club books. She then proceeds to tell the story of Hansel and Gretel.

Arthur then falls asleep and dreams of himself and D.W. as the main characters of the fairy tale. They are first lost in the woods, but then find a path that leads to a gingerbread house. They then meet the witch (played by Mr. Ratburn) who lives in there. Trapped in a cell, Arthur and D.W. yell for the witch to let them out, and the witch replies, "Oh, I will, as soon as the oven heats up." D.W. then notices that the bars are made of candy cane and says they can lick their way out. Arthur doesn't want to help because of his stomachache. However, they are saved by the seven dwarfs (played by the Tibble twins), who then take D.W. to give her her nap time. D.W. asks Arthur to get Thora.

On the way, Binky teases him, prompting Arthur to put on a red cloak. Once he reaches Thora's, he sees that she is now a living wedding cake. Thora throws herself into Arthur's mouth, fattening him up before D.W. arrives and scolds him.

Buster arrives as a woodcutter. Although Arthur tries to convince him that it's really him, Buster doesn't believe him. When Buster raises his ax, Arthur wakes up from his nightmare.

When Thora asks Arthur if he's feeling all right and if he had a nightmare, D.W. remarks, "It’s probably from all those fairy tales you were reading him" before turning to Arthur and adding "See? They are scary." Arthur comments that his stomach really hurts; Thora gives him a few pills to help his upset stomach.

Later that night, he has another dream where D.W. scolds him for selling her Mary Moo Cow for some beans. Arthur says that they are magic beans, but D.W. throws them into two holes in the ground, responding, "That’s what I think of your 'magic beans'!"

Much to their surprise, a giant beanstalk sprouts out of the ground. Arthur climbs it and sees a castle and a goose, which belongs to a giant formed out of everything Arthur has ever eaten. Arthur escapes from the giant, and Buster from Arthur's Little Red Riding Hood dream shows up; this time, he says that not only is he a woodcutter, he is a licensed beanstalk cutter (while showing ID to prove it). He chops down the beanstalk.

Arthur wakes up from his dream with a fairly large burp, saying that the last fairy tale helped his stomachache go away.

The scene shifts to the library where Arthur concludes the story and eats chocolate, thus finishing the episode.







  • This is the first episode to use the title card with D.W. dressed like a fairy and turning Arthur's head into that of a frog with her magic wand.
  • In this episode, D.W. is shown to calmly and openly state the meaning of her initials, unlike the other episodes where she is embarrassed by them. (This takes place, however, in Arthur's dream, not in "reality".)
  • After Arthur and D.W. finish their dinner, there's only three pieces of wedding cake for dessert but when Arthur gets full from eating some, D.W. says he had two pieces of cake and there were only three pieces, so D.W. or Grandma Thora wouldn't have had any cake if Arthur had two pieces of it because if he did then that just leaves only one piece left for one of them to have.

Cultural references

  • In the intro, the talking pig in the book boasts that he has been one "hundreds of years before Babe" — he references the titular pig of the 1995 film Babe, though he could be also referring to the original book.
  • Among the candy Arthur bought, a spoof of Tootsie Roll called Footsie Roll is shown.
  • Arthur's dreams are based on several fairy tales:
  • The witch crying “I’m melting!” refers to the Wicked Witch of the West from The Wizard of Oz.
  • The seven dwarves played by the Tibbles have names that parody Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: Pesky, Whiny, Grouchy, Angry, Noisy, Creepy and Stinky.
  • This episode is similar to the Rocko's Modern Life episode, "Yarnbenders".

Episode connections

  • D.W. finds a green chip at the gingerbread house in the mailbox and she eats it. This chip is likely Big Green from "The Chips are Down."
  • When David says Thora will bake Arthur and D.W. her chocolate chip cookies, Arthur imagines himself taking a bite out of one that's hard as a rock hurting his teeth; Arthur carelessly says "Terrific" as he comes out of the fantasy spot; he doesn't even look surprised because she made awful ones in "The Half-Baked Sale."

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Main article: Just Desserts/Gallery