The Secret Life of Dogs & Babies
"Prunella's Special Edition" / "The Secret Life of Dogs & Babies"
Synopsis by: George4Browne - It's bacon! -- no wait, no...
Comments by: George4Browne and KorraIsBack
Some slightly upbeat music is playing, but there's something not quite right about it. A group of four Rugrats-esque babies are playing in a playpen, making a tower out of alphabet blocks. Suddenly, a girl with yellow hair that has blue ribbons tied in it approaches them. One of the babies asks, "Veronica, what are you doing in Daddy's clothes?"
Veronica: Daddy went to the food co-op and he left me in charge! You babies look a little hungry. I'd better feed you your favorite food, mashed lima beans!
What torture! They've got to escape. The block structure! One by one, the climb up it and hop onto the back of a strange-esque Naga dog. A red-headed, glasses-wearing one (who looks like Chuckie Finster, although another of them was identified as "Bucky") comments, "Why not just use the door?" He picks up an oversized, yellow key, and does so.
Zoom out, from the TV to the Read's stripey couch, where Arthur, D.W., Pal, and Kate are sitting. A voice speaks out, but it's not Arthur or D.W. It's Kate!
Kate: I can't believe this show! It's so unrealistic! If my playpen was that easy to escape from, I'd be in Paris by now! And where are the parents?!
Well, if I remember correctly, Dad's at a food co-op. And of course, the Mom is conveniently missing.
Of course, she is only a baby... and she's right, you don't go leaving a four year old in charge of a group of babies,of course we understand that Carpet Rodentz is a parody and rendition of NICK's 'Rugrats'. Well, the same parody gig as on 'Arthur'
Kate comments that "Vidiboobies" was a show with some substance -- it's too bad D.W. doesn't still like it. Another new voice speaks out. It's Pal! In a rather high-class British sounding voice he suggests that maybe D.W. still does... He changes the channel using the remote control.
Po-Coloured Vidiboobie: ...And like some insubstantial pageant faded. Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff as dreams are made of. And our little life is rounded with a sleep. Stinky Pinky, I am vex'd.
Well, that there is the dialogue of 'Vidiboobies.' What a hoot! 'Vidiboobies' is a 'Teletubbies' parody that's even more 'babyish' than 'Love Ducks.' The characters have the same general look and color as Teletubbies, but their antenna are a dollar sign, a cent sign, a pound sign, and a yen sign. Also present is the 'baby-sun' from the 'Teletubbies,' although this one is aardvarky.
The Po-coloured Vidiboobie is recalling Shakespeare's "The Tempest", Act 4, Scene 1, 155-158. Then again, it might not be -- it just might be that Baby Kate can understand the Vidiboobies whereas she can't understand grown-up language. To Arthur and D.W., the Vidiboobies might not be making sense.
D.W. and Arthur start arguing. Arthur says that he can't believe D.W. watches this. D.W. says that she didn't change the channel, and figures that Arthur must have, as after all, 'Vidiboobies' is just like 'Love Ducks.' As the camera focuses in on Kate and Pal, the bickering continues. Except now it's nothing but so much babbling.
Kate: Sometimes I'm very happy I don't understand a word they say.
|* * * The Secret Life of Dogs & Babies * * *
Pal howls upon finding that the title card is empty.
|Written by: Peter K. Hirsch
Storyboard by: Patricia Atchison, Elie Klimos
For some unexplained reason, Mom is pushing Kate down the sidewalk in a stroller, and Arthur is with her, taking Pal for a walk. Kate's trying to explain the concept of the baby's face inside the sun on Vidiboobies to Pal.
Baby Kate: You see Pal, the smiling baby in the sun represents essential unity with nature...
Pal says that's fascinating, and bends down and consumes a partially-eaten chocolate dip doughnut that was lying on a sewer grate. Yet another new voice speaks out. This time, it's Francine's cat, Nemo (last seen in #50702- "Pet Peeved").
Nemo: Ahhhh... If it isn't the walking trash can! Tell me Pal, does Arthur never give you a bath? Or did you roll in something dead this morning?
Pal asks Nemo if he wants a piece of him and starts clawing and growling. "Heel, boy, heel!" yells Arthur. Francine says that Arthur should take Pal to a shrink because he's wacko. Nemo jumps into Francine's hands.
Pal: You're lucky your master's here to protect you!
Nemo: Cats don't have masters, just good friends.
With that, Pal gives Francine a lick.
The donut from the sewer grate slides across the screen, taking us to a scene in the Read kitchen. Arthur's Dad is catering a wedding for the niece of Ed Crosswire. However, a special decoration that's supposed to go on top of the wedding cake is missing.
Baby Kate, holding a Mary Moocow toy, has been placed on the floor, and overhears this turmoil.
Kate: Something is wrong with Daddy.
Pal: Do you think he has fleas?
Dad unfurls a photo, which was a picture of the bride and groom that he used to base the decoration on. Baby Kate can see the finished decoration, or "statue" as she calls it, lying on the floor amongst some of D.W.'s toys. Kate believes that it's what's missing from the white tower (the wedding cake.) Pal notes that the smell of the photo doesn't match that of the smell of the decoration.
For Pal's calculation, this is conclusive, as dogs rely heavily on their sense of smell. I'm just explaining this for any pure 'cat-people' out there.
Baby Kate's not so convinced though. As she crawls towards the decoration, Dad comments that he can't afford to have this order go wrong, as the Crosswire's are half his business. He races off to check the den. Kate continues towards the decoration to rescue it for Dad, but just before she reaches it, Mom grabs her, and carries her out of the kitchen. Kate's indignant.
Kate: What? What's going on!? Mother, now is not the time for a nap!
Pal: Goodbye, dearest Kate! I know it shall only be for an hour, but it will feel like seven hours to me!
Poor Pal, living in the ol' dog years.
Baby Kate tells Pal that he's the only hope now. She doesn't know why, but he has to retrieve the statue.
Meanwhile, D.W. has been ordered to clean up her toys, which are scattered around the kitchen. She's wasn't happy about this.
D.W.:It's not fair! I do all the work in this house! Some of these things aren't even mine!
Nevertheless, she places the stuff, including the decoration, into her 'Fluffy Unicorn Barn,' and begins to take it upstairs.
As she walks up the stairs, Pal grabs onto the 'unicorn barn' with his teeth, trying to pull the door open. D.W. pulls back, yelling at Arthur that his 'crazy dog' is trying to steal her toys. Arthur dislodges Pal, figuring that he must be hungry because he hasn't gotten his breakfast yet.
Arthur directs Pal into the kitchen. He pulls out Pal's food, which today just so happens out of a carton marked "Chicken Feast". It's tempting, but Pal stands firm. He must resist!
Upstairs, Kate imagines what will happen when the "statue" is placed atop the "white tower." Streaks of bright light shoot out, turning a group of grown-ups in a field into babies.
Kate: ...And when all the grown-ups are babies again, the wolf shall dwell with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, and there shall be peace on earth.
Baby Kate's noting from Isaiah 11:6. Even though this a Bible referrence to this episode, Arthur, of all others, had mentioned it.....
Meanwhile, D.W.'s busy grumbling about how Pal gets "five breakfasts a day."
Kate sees that D.W.'s got the cake decoration in the barn. She must get it. She notes that her playpen is "too high to climb, and there's no plastic, yellow key" like on TV. Kate decides to try crying, a it's always worked before. At first, D.W.'s not sure what Kate wants. Is she hungry? Does she need her diaper changed? She soon catches on though.
D.W.: You want to see my toys?
She hands Kate a stuffed lemon, with a smiling face and white, red-striped pajamas.
Kate: Larry the Lemon?! I don't want Larry the Lemon!
Okay, is it just me, or is this potentially dangerous? Kate's lucky she only got Larry the Lemon. Couldn't some of D.W.'s toys possibly present a choking hazard to Kate? Or was this threat meticulously eliminated when Kate moved in back in #11102- "D.W.'s Baby?"
Larry the Lemon looks like he's one of the "Bananas in Pajamas".
Back downstairs, Pal's made a valiant effort in rejecting his "Chicken Feast" food. He's in trouble now because Arthur pulls out the coup de grace -- bacon! This begins a fantasy sequence for Pal. It's a musical number. Pal's in a black suit with black top-hat and red bowtie, singing and dancing with a gorgeous female strip of bacon.
Pal: Heaven! I'm in heaven!
And my heart beats so, that I can hardly speak!
And I seem to find the happiness I seek
When I have that bacon in between my cheeks.
The technology that shows fantasy sequences for dogs has apparently been perfected since #11401 - "Arthur the Wrecker". There are no fuzzy edges or 'shizz-shizz' noises, or anything like that in this musical number.
Pal hears a cry from Kate, and gets his priorities straight. He races upstairs, where D.W. is fighting with Kate for the decoration.
D.W. doesn't want Kate to play with it, as it's too delicate. Kate tells Pal to give her a hand. Pal looks at his paws and says he doesn't have hands. Kate tells him to just do something. Pal tugs on D.W.'s dress.
The ornament goes flying, and Pal grabs it in his mouth in midair.
Kate: Nice catch Pal!
Pal puts the decoration down.
Pal: Oh, that was nothing! You know, I took second place at the Elwood City Fetching Competition... of course, it was in the lapdog catagory...
Arthur comes into D.W.'s and starts yelling at Pal, but he can't comprehend a word of it. He races off with the decoration.
Downstairs, Pal starts yipping at Dad, who's still searching for the decoration, under the couch. However, Dad just brushes him off with a "Not now, Pal!"
Pal grumbles, "That's what you get for being man's best friend," and gives up, taking the decoration with him into the kitchen. When Arthur comes back downstairs, he observes Pal eating a piece of bacon, and ends up thinking that he swallowed the cake decoration. He tells Dad the bad news.
Dad: I'm doomed!
Mom: You'll just have to tell Ed the truth, dear. I'll come with you.
D.W. berates Pal. Pal only understands parts of what she's saying.
The time comes for the Reads to leave for the wedding in Dad's delivery van, which has a banged up front bumper.
Arthur puts Pal's leash on, saying that the walk they're going on might be their last.
Mom comes out with Kate in her arms. Kate asks if Pal tried to give the statue to Dad. Pal says he tried, and even waited for ten whole seconds. She explains to Pal that grown-ups are a bit slow sometimes. Pal says he'll try again, and retrieves the decoration from his full food dish. He rushes out with it, but Dad isn't paying Pal any attention. He shuts the doors on the van and heads out. Kate calls out to him that she heard 'Muffy' a few times. She thinks that they might be headed to her place.
Pal starts racing with the decoration in his mouth., so that he can get to the wedding and get the decoration on the cake. He's managing to keep up with the van, which still has some minor damage to the rear doors, as it did in #50302 - "The Shore Thing". However, Pal ends up getting his leash trapped on a fence. And just who happens to be sitting on top of the fence? It's Nemo!
Nemo: Well, well, well, what do we have here? Poor Pal. All dressed up and no place to go.
Pal: You have to help me! I'll do anything!
Nemo: You could be my scratching post for a week... No wait, I'd catch your mange...
We can hear the van driving further away, and we see Pal pawing the ground, impatient. Nemo's taking his time though.
Pal: Quickly, Nemo!
Nemo: Ah, I've got it. Beg!
Pal: gulps... You're a cruel beast.
Pal proceeds to beg, to Nemo's great amusement.
Nemo: Oh ho ho oh oh! Oh that's rich! I love it!
Pal: How do I get to Muffy's?!
Nemo: Make a left at the bakery smell, a right at the laundry smell, and straight until you hit the strong scent of new money!
At the wedding, Arthur's Dad's doing a lot fancy talking, trying to avoid telling Ed that he lost the decoration.
Dad: You see, Ed, at the last minute I thought we'd try something a little more, uh, minimal.
Pal makes it to Muffy's, and gets in the van via the backdoor, which is open. He passes off the decoration to Kate, sitting in a carseat, who notes that she only has one shot at getting the decoration on top of the white tower. She's facing the opposite way to the cake, but she's able to see it using the rear-view mirror. She hurls the decoration backwards towards the cake. The decoration flips through the air.
Arthur's Dad and Mom are now directing Ed towards the van, rambling on about how he knows that the cake isn't what he expected. Ed sees the cake, with the decoration atop it, and comments that it isn't what he expected.
Ed: No, it isn't what I expected... It's much better!
So everything's worked out, and everyone's happy, right? Pal certainly seems to be. He says that he's glad Kate's Mom decided to stay awhile. He and Kate have been left on their own at the vacant dinner table. Pal's hungry, not having had his full breakfast.
Pal: This gristle is divine!
Then he notices Kate, who's spinning her bottle, a little glum.
Pal: Kate? You haven't touched your formula. What's wrong?
At first, Kate tries to pass it off as nothing. Then she explains her fantasy in which everyone turned into babies.
Kate: Silly of me really...
Pal's not upset though. He has a different view of things.
Pal: You know Kate, they may not look like babies, but they are behaving like babies...
As Pal says this, we see Ed Crosswire, dancing around in a tophat and waving rattles. Pal goes on.
Pal: ...They're playing with their toys, they're acting silly, they're even sharing their food!
At this last line, we see the groom eating part of the decoration that the bride handed to him. He comments: "Kinda tastes like... chicken."
Which could be expected, it having sat in Pal's breakfast
Kate: You're right, they are different! I don't know how they'd survive without us!
As the music beats to a close, Pal licks Baby Kate's face.
Well, this is another one of those "different" episodes. Personally, I quite liked this episode. It's a lot like #11202 - "Arthur's Lost Dog," but this one seemed to be a lot better, at least to me. I guess the storyline was rather shaky, but I liked the fantasy sequences and the parodies, and I thought many of the character's lines were rather amusing.
DarthJedi500 of the Yahoo club noted that Pal and Nemo are very mean towards each other in this episode, whereas they seemed to be friends back in #31302 - "Francine and the Feline." One suggestion is that perhaps it's the type of friendship that's based in rivalry. It seemed like some of their insults were quite harsh though.
I'm glad we finally got a Baby Kate/Pal episode. We've known that they had somewhat of a bond for a while now, or at least suspected it... see #12002 - "The Half-Baked Sale" and#40501 - "The Blizzard". Hooray for Baby Kate.