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"Prunella Packs It In"
Season/Series: 11
Number in season: 3b
Original Airdate: United States June 27, 2007[1]
Canada September 19, 2007[3]
United Kingdom December 10, 2007[2]
Germany May 12, 2008[4]
Written by: Susan Kim
Storyboard by: Elie Klimos
Elise Benoît
Jean Lajeunesse
"Buenas Noches, Vicita"
"Phony Fern"

"Prunella Packs It In" is the second half of the third episode in the eleventh season of Arthur.


Prunella takes on more extracurricular activities.


The episode begins in an imaginary sequence where Prunella (as Griselda the Fearless) is seeking a magic chalice within a dark castle. However, she accidentally awakens the Three Headed Dog of Doogenkirk, and it gives chase. Griselda runs up a spiral staircase and reaches a large door. She frantically bangs on it, calling out to Lady Discord to let her in.

Rubella opens the door and the scene flashes back to reality, revealing that Prunella is playing pretend Henry Skreever in a costume and the Three Headed Dog is actually a small dog plushie. Prunella is still role-playing, but Rubella tells her off as she is studying for an exam. When Prunella disregards the importance of the test, Rubella becomes annoyed and explains that it is the college exam before telling her to keep quiet and closing the door. Prunella picks up the dog plushie and walks off.

Prunella Packs It In

After the title card, Prunella enters the Ice Cream Shop and finds Brain and Muffy. She orders a "Magical Mystery Sundae" and invites Muffy to play pretend Henry Skreever. Muffy declines as she has tap class and points out that Prunella usually does this with Rubella. Prunella explains that Rubella is busy studying for her college exam. Brain then emphasizes the importance of both the exam results and school grades in getting considered for college admission. Muffy points out that her dad graduated from Ivy University, a prestigious school. When Prunella grows concerned about her college prospects, Muffy assures her that she will get admitted into at least one of the many colleges out there. Prunella then leaves without her sundae.

That night, while thinking over Muffy's words, Prunella has a nightmare about graduating from clown college with everyone laughing at her.

The next day, Prunella goes to the library and is about to check out a large stack of textbooks on various academic subjects. Muffy arrives with Bailey and Prunella explains her situation. Muffy advises that Prunella should also try to be well-rounded - participate in a variety of extracurricular activities - as getting into college is more than just good grades. Muffy explains that she dances, plays the ocarina, and reads to little children at the library every week. Bailey then begins reading to the children while Muffy reads one of her own books. After some thinking, Prunella leaves without checking out the textbooks.

Back at home, Prunella is in her room with Marina, picking classes to take at the Elwood City Cultural Center. Marina points out that Prunella is too young to be worrying about college, to which Prunella counters that it's easier for Marina since she gets straight A's. Marina then advises Prunella to at least choose activities that match her interests. However, Prunella states that there are no classes in fortune-telling and initially signs up for kendo, VA engine assembly, useful Czech, and artisanal cheese-making.

Prunella leaves kendo class when she discovers that the students will not be using swords for another five weeks. She runs into Bailey, who is taking a baking class (apparently also along with with Muffy), and he helps her find her Czech classroom. Prunella opens the door to find that there is only one other student, and promptly leaves.

At the park, Prunella tells Marina that cheese-making made her feel sick, so she replaced those classes with three new ones, including yodeling. Marina suggests that she do volunteer work instead, citing her dad, who volunteers at the Elwood City Wildlife Center. Prunella likens to the idea and declines Marina's request to play soccer, as she is late to SCUBA class.

Later on a sidewalk, Prunella is wearing a bird costume and trying to sell bumper stickers for donations to save the pied-billed grebes. However, none of the passersby are interested. Prunella is then attacked by a bird as she is retrieving a plastic water bottle she accidentally threw in the trash.

At school, Mr. Ratburn wakes Prunella as she is napping against her locker. Prunella quickly begins dancing until realizing she isn't in flamenco class. Mr. Ratburn asks if Prunella would like to help paint the sets for the upcoming school play, as she did a wonderful job last year. Prunella wants to, but sadly declines, explaining that she cannot fit it into her schedule. Mr. Ratburn assures her that there is still time to think it over. Prunella despondently opens her locker, only for all the materials for her various classes to fall out, much to her frustration.

Back home, Prunella reviews her schedule and sees that she has 20 minutes free, so she decides to take a nap. Prunella dreams that she is carrying a very large amount of supplies for her various appointments and runs into her former instructors, who try to give her more things to carry. She flees to the cultural center, only to find that everyone is taking the college exam. Rubella hands Prunella a copy, saying that she had better do well on it since she failed at all of her extracurricular activities. As she gets stuck on the first question, Dean Pickles reassures Prunella that the clown college will always have a spot for her, causing her to scream in denial. Prunella then wakes up the next morning to find that she had slept through yesterday's appointments.

At the Sugar Bowl, Prunella tells Marina that she has dropped out of all of her extracurricular courses and is resigned to settle for clown college. Marina reminds her that now she has time again to do activities she is interested in and offers to play pretend Henry Skreever. Prunella agrees, but remembers something, so she postpones the play date and leaves.

At school, Prunella is among those painting the sets for the school play, with Mr. Ratburn praising her work. Prunella thanks him, but doesn't believe it will let her be considered for college. However, Mr. Ratburn reveals that set design is a well-respected profession with entire schools devoted to the art. Muffy attempts to invalidate this assertion and asks her father to support her claim when comes to pick her up. Mr. Crosswire reveals that he actually never went to college and thus would not know; his diploma from Ivy University is just an honorary degree for donating the school's library, much to Muffy's shock. When he leaves, Prunella retorts with Muffy's original advice, reassuring her that she will be accepted into at least one college out there. Muffy storms off and Prunella enthusiastically instructs Binky, Fern, George, and Sue Ellen on painting the sets.






  • Arthur doesn't appear in this episode.
  • D.W. is not seen with her preschool friends at the library.
  • Despite being named Pickles, Dean Pickles looks like Fishface.

Cultural references

  • The sign over Lady Discord (Rubella)’s door reads “Beati pauperes spiritu” which is Latin for “Blessed are the poor in spirit”, a quote from the Sermon on the Mount.
  • Unlike the green-tailed grebe, the pied-billed grebe is a real bird. However, it is not endangered, as the episode implies.
  • In the Czech teacher's room is a poster of "The Good Soldier Švejk".
  • The Czech teacher writes in English phonetic spelling rather than actual Czech.
  • Prunella helps to prepare the set for “The Cherry Orchard” by Anton Chekov.


  • When Prunella asks her kendo classmate, "Where are the swords?", her mouth does not move.
  • After Mr. Ratburn says, "You did such a wonderful job last year", the background behind him shifts to the right for a split second before the camera changes to Prunella.
  • At the Sugar Bowl, there's a menu showing a list of ice cream flavors and the word "Vanilla" is misspelled "Vanila".

Production notes

  • Closed captions of the TVOKids broadcast give Prunella's name as "Prunella Neville" during Dean Pickles's dialogue,[5] although the audio gives the correct name of "Prunella Deegan". PBS closed captions do not contain this error.[6]

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