|"When Duty Calls"|
|Number in season:||2|
|Original Airdate:|| October 16, 2019|
March 18, 2020
February 23, 2020
|Written by:||Matt Hoverman|
|Storyboard by:||Allan Jeffery|
"The Pea and the Princess"
In a story written by Fern and Ladonna, Vern helps her sister Lafawna prepare to explore the arctic. She tells the audience that “a new frontier isn’t so scary if you’re tied to something solid and familiar.” Just as Vern wants to fasten Lafawna’s safety rope, it slips from her hands and Lafawna drifts away on an ice floe.
The kids have their last Fiction Friday before summer vacation. Fern expects Ladonna to continue the story from the introduction, but Ladonna finishes it by having Lafawna drift away and Vern never seeing her again. Ladonna mentions casually that she will not be working on the story anymore, because her dad is being transferred to Oregon and the family will leave for good the next week. The others are shocked, especially because Ladonna does not seem to care.
Bud says an early goodbye in D.W.’s room because he does not want to forget anything. He confesses that he left the original Rapty in Guam and that the present Rapty is Rapty Two. After he has left, Mr. Read asks D.W. how she feels. She claims that she is fine, but quickly breaks down crying.
In the treehouse, Arthur, Buster, Muffy and Fern wonder why Ladonna does not seem to care about leaving. Ladonna arrives, apparently happy, and gives her friends back the things she borrowed from them. Buster remembers that he has experience in leaving his friends, because he once traveled with his dad for six months.
Buster and his friends visit the ice-cream shop. They want to give Buster his favorite ice-cream from the week before he left, hoping that it will make him remember how he felt then. Brain has recorded all of Buster’s favorite ice-creams in a book, but Arthur remembers by heart. He says he remembers the week very well because he was so upset. Buster tries the ice-cream and remembers that he was worried that his friends might forget him. Fern suggests recording all of their favorite Ladonna memories in a book. Muffy suggests a film instead.
Mr. Read has offered to write a letter to Bud. D.W. starts dictating but cannot think of a good beginning.
That evening, Mr. Read makes jambalaya as a parting gift for the Compsons. D.W. tries to puts some in an envelope, but it gets soggy. She then tries to trace her outline on a large sheet of paper, but it will not fit into the envelope.
Muffy films her friends as they remember Ladonna bringing an umbrella during a rainstorm, telling funny stories and scoring a winning goal. Muffy uses an onion to make Brain cry.
The kids throw a farewell party for Ladonna at the Crosswire mansion. They show the film, which Muffy has spiced up with some over-the-top effects. She has also added footage from a severe storm to Arthur’s umbrella story and edited the footage of Brain to make it look like he was crying over Ladonna. Most kids are embarrassed and Ladonna wants to leave. When Fern assures her that she will not be forgotten, Ladonna tells her that that is not what she is afraid of. Ladonna hurries away, followed by Fern.
Fern catches up with Ladonna at a bridge in the park. Fern calls Ladonna out on pretending not to care. She wants to know the reason, since they are good friends. Ladonna tells her that at her dad’s last posting, she had a good friend named Tony Arnoni. They promised to be pen pals for life, but after Ladonna moved to Elwood City, Tony never answered her letters. Ladonna expects that Fern and the others will be the same. Their film only showed what they did together, not what they were going to do. Ladonna leaves, reasoning that she will always have General Higgins with her. Fern shouts after her that she is not Tony Arnoni.
At night, Arthur and Buster telephone. Buster reasons that the difference between him and Ladonna is that he knew he would come back.
Meanwhile, Fern falls asleep looking at the last chapter Ladonna wrote. Fern dreams that Lafawna drifts away on the ice floe saying that it is okay. Vern replies “Not this time” and uses the zeppelin to save Lafawna before the ice floe falls down a waterfall. Fern wakes up and calls Arthur to tell him to get everyone together. Arthur is busy teaching D.W. to write a letter to Bud. Eventually, he tells her to just copy what he writes.
Later that day, the kids meet at the treehouse and Fern tells them that they will use technology to stay a part of Ladonna’s life.
Ladonna puts stickers on all the toys she wants to take with her. Since Bud has covered Rapty with stickers, she has to get more. She passes Arthur and Fern who are working in the Reads’ garden and Buster who is washing his mom’s car. The kids act as if Ladonna’s leaving was no big deal.
While Ladonna buys stickers, her friends hurry into a computer store. They take no notice of Ladonna, who believes that her friends are already starting to forget her.
When the Compsons are ready to leave Elwood City, the kids arrive in Crosswire limousine to see Ladonna off. They give her a box which contains a website, created by Brain, with which they can stay connected with Ladonna. They also give Ladonna a tablet computer, the money for which they earned by doing extra jobs. They share a group hug. D.W. gives Bud a self-written letter and they hug as well. After the Compsons drive off, D.W. realizes that Bud has left Rapty behind and hugs him. Bud tells Ladonna that he did that so that D.W. would have to write to him.
Several months later, Fern has a video chat with Ladonna. Ladonna has completed another chapter in their story and introduces Fern to her neighbor Laurie, thus connecting her old and new friends.
- Francine Frensky
- Cisely Compson
- Gussie Compson
- Madison Compson
- Sue Ellen Armstrong
- Maria Pappas
- Bitzi Baxter
- Binky Barnes
- Jane Read
- George Lundgren
- Ladonna's great aunt Olivia
- The Compson family moves to Oregon in this episode, and it's also revealed that this is the fourth time they have moved.
- It is revealed in this episode that the Rapty that Bud has is his second; the first one was left behind when he moved from Guam.
- The second Rapty is then left behind at the end of the episode; however Bud does that on purpose so that he and D.W. could keep writing to each other.
- The Compsons moved to Elwood City from Louisiana in "Based on a True Story."
- In “Fern and the Case of the Stolen Story”, Fern and Ladonna decide to write stories together. They also use characters based on each other (Ladella, Ladoona, Ferg, Ferm).
- Fern and Ladonna say that they were inspired to write their own book, like Arthur and Buster did in "Arthur's Faraway Friend" and "Buster's Back."
- Buster recalls leaving Elwood City for a time in "Arthur's Faraway Friend," and being afraid that his friends would forget about him.
- Pickles and Peppermints may be a reference to how, in the early seasons, the Powers served some highly unusual flavors like Rocky Trout.
- Arthur shows his diorama from "Arthur and the Whole Truth." That episode did show him carrying the diorama home, but there was no rainstorm.
- Muffy may have taken the footage of the flooded city from news reports on the storm in “Shelter from the Storm”.
- The selfie of Arthur, Buster, Muffy and Ladonna in Muffy's video was taken during "The Longest Eleven Minutes."
- Muffy spoiling a video with too many special effects also happened in “Sue Ellen and the Last Page”.
- Sue Ellen is at Ladonna’s farewell party, yet no one asks her about her having to leave all her friends behind when she moved to Elwood City in “Sue Ellen Moves In”.
- In “The Last Day”, Francine and Muffy use a blog to stay in touch over summer vacation.
- Laurie’s ferret is the ninth Arthur character named Chester after Mrs. MacGrady’s first husband (mentioned in “Arthur Accused”), Sue Ellen’s teddy bear (“Sue Ellen’s Little Sister”), the Glenbrook student (“The Return of the King”), Bailey’s former bully (mentioned in “Muffy’s Art Attack”), James’ uncle (“D.W. Unties the Knot”), Sir Chester Wimple (“Mr. Ratburn’s Secret Identity”), Arthur's imagined identical twin (mentioned in "Cereal"), and a peregrine falcon (“Muffy’s House Guests”).
- Bud gives D.W. Rapty. In "The Rhythm and Roots of Arthur", Rapty is seen again as D.W.'s toy.
- London, from the And Now a Word from Us Kids segment, is featured in a podcast from The Military Child Education Coalition.
- This is the first two-part episode to be written by someone other than Peter K. Hirsch since "Fifteen."
- The end credits refer to David Read as Mr. Read and to Rufus Compson as Rufus.