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"The Short, Quick Summer"
Season/Series: 2
Number in season: 9B
Original Airdate: United States October 30, 1997[1]
Canada December 4, 1997[2]
Germany February 5, 2002[3]
Written by: Joe Fallon
Storyboard by: Denis Banville
"D.W. Goes to Washington"
Read transcript

"The Short, Quick Summer" is the second half of the ninth episode in the second season of Arthur.


As summer vacation draws to a close, Arthur wonders where the time went.


The introduction shows the last minutes of the school year. While Mr. Ratburn does one more math problem and Mrs. Fink’s class sings a song, Arthur shows a list of the things he plans to do that summer, like playing with Buster, going to the beach and looking at clouds. Finally, the bell rings.

The Short, Quick Summer

When his mom reminds him that school starts in a week, Arthur is shocked. He searches for his list, because he feels he has not done enough, but he cannot find it.

When Arthur complains to Buster about not having done anything all summer, Buster reminds him that both of them saved the carousel at the park. After learning from the operator that Mr. Crosswire had bought the carousel and wanted to rip it down, Buster organized a protest. Grandma Thora showed Mr. Crosswire an old photo of him riding the carousel as a toddler with his daddy, and Mr. Crosswire decided to keep the carousel running. Arthur feels that this was something Buster did- not him.

Binky tells Arthur how he took his bike apart to clean it, though he did not manage to put it back together. He also invented the "mud sled", which did not quite work, but he enjoyed the mud.

At home, D.W. reminds Arthur that Kate said her first word that summer. D.W. called for the excited parents, only to tell them that the word was “bloodge agwa”.

Arthur meets his friends at the Sugar Bowl. Fern went to poetry camp and is now unable to stop rhyming. Sue Ellen spent the summer learning a difficult card trick from Mr. Ratburn.

On the way home, Arthur meets Francine and Prunella, who have been digging a hole all summer to look for minerals that can tell the future.

Arthur talks to Brain who spent the summer teaching science and soccer at summer school.

When Arthur passes Prunella's house again, the girls have filled up the hole, but still feel they had a lot of fun. Arthur thinks that everybody had a great time except him.

Arthur returns to his room and finds the list stuck to the back of the door, only to realize it is too late as summer is over. D.W. later shows and makes him read it. He “had adventures” by reading adventure books and imagining himself as part of the action. He “explored space” by playing astronauts with Buster. He “learned to fly” by riding his bike over a ramp. Happily, he realizes that he was all wrong, because he did everything on the list. Feeling much better, he thanks D.W. for asking him to read the list and throws it away, much to her dismay.

On the last evening of summer vacation, Arthur, Buster, and Francine toast marshmallows in the Reads’ yard. They imagine being cowboys around a campfire and Arthur remarks that school will be relaxing after all the adventures he had.







  • Morals:
    • Summer breaks do not last long. Always appreciate the fun times.
    • Reading can bring you many adventures, even during boring rainy days.

Cultural references

Episode connections

  • "The Long, Dull Winter"'s title is a reference to this episode's title. Not only that, both episodes have their title card read out by Binky.
  • Fern cannot stop rhyming. In "Rhyme for Your Life", Binky has exactly the same problem.
  • Brain is shown preparing a rocket for launch. This would later become an interest of Buster's during summer break in "Buster Spaces Out"
  • The episode ends on the night before the first day of 4th grade. The events of the first day of school would be shown in the special "Arthur's First Day", 24 years after this episode aired.


  • D.W. said that Kate said her first word, even though it technically wasn't a word. However, D.W. also states that Kate had already said her first word in "The Perfect Brother".
  • The deck of cards Mr. Ratburn uses has three black aces, when it should only have two.
  • Arthur's list is not visible hanging on the back of his door until the very end of the episode.

Home Video




Main article: The Short, Quick Summer/Gallery