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1990 - The Year Santa Died


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Don't mess
with the bull.

The Hey Arnold Episode The Creator Hated

Of all the Nicktoons that aired on the Nickelodeon channel in the late 1990s there wasn't quite a gem in the lineup as Hey Arnold. A series that gave viewers a look at characters dealing with personal issues, learning to cope with others, and resolving problems that are put upon them. But what if I told you there was an episode that was so mean spirited that the creator, Craig Bartlett even wanted to pretend doesn't exist? Today I'll be looking at a rather dark episode of the show coming off the third season, "Arnold betrays Iggy".

The episode starts off simple enough, Arnold walks home from school with two friends, Sid and Stinky as they talk about how they look up to Iggy, a fellow student at their school that's gotten away with a lot of things like making a crude drawing of the Principal. Arnold decides to pay a visit to Iggy, finding out a rather personal secret about him.

Arnold finds out that he wears bunny pajamas in his home, trying not to laugh at what he witnessed. Iggy warns him not to tell everyone at the school about it but it ends up backfiring on him the next day as Arnold tries to hold back some mild laughter as Sid and Stinky are hanging with him again, saying to themselves that there can't possibly be something as silly as bunny pajamas that would be embarrassing enough for him, Arnold says nothing, pauses, and the two friends immediately have it figured out.

Not holding the secret between them, Sid and Stinky straight up tell their friends at the school playground about Iggy's secret and scarring him for what seems like several months, as seen represented with seasons changing in a different scene as Arnold tries to find ways for Iggy to forgive him, even going as far as doing his chores for a week, but to no avail. After finally snapping, Arnold asks him what he needs to do to gain that forgiveness, and he hatches a plan, digging out the same bunny pajamas from his closet.

Arnold sees before him what looks like the entire neighborhood around a walkway. His grandpa stands right next to him but doesn't offer much on handling the situation but rather trying not to laugh at the result. After a long wait, he decides to put on the pajamas, but before he walks out, Iggy eavesdrops over Sid and Stinky saying that it really wasn't Arnold's fault and it was really them who found out about it themselves through guessing.

Immediately understanding the situation Arnold was in, Iggy quickly shouts to him that he doesn't need to come out, but it's already too late, almost the entire neighborhood laughs at him, except for Iggy himself, and Sid and Stinky who also put their camera down noticing his embarrassment and regret. Arnold walks back inside, and the scene ends.

Going to a shot of the outside of Arnold's place, Iggy waits for him to answer the door but Arnold shows coldness toward him while Iggy just repeats trying the attempts that Arnold was doing for forgiveness, and the episode ends.

The aftermath of this episode caused quite a stir as you could see, not only did Craig Bartlett hate this particular episode, he wanted to prevent future airings of it on the network. While other episodes I mentioned do delve into the understanding of characters and their own situations in life, "Arnold betrays Iggy" took things too far, even what seemed like Arnold being slightly written out of character when he's usually the one to resolve things and not being negative.

Have you ever gotten to see "Arnold betrays Iggy"? Leave a comment, and I'll see you next article!

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Benjanime Posted on Jun 17, 2022 at 07:22 PM

@Mr Magic

it's definitely an episode i wasn't expecting compared to the other memorable ones we're used to seeing with actual good morals to them, oh well.


i suppose it's inevitable that anyone will get bullied throughout their years of school, sadly we must endure, but i'm glad you got through it as i did, my love ❤

Julie Posted on Jun 17, 2022 at 05:17 PM

I didn't watch the episode (my Sega Genesis fault LOL) but I can imagine the embarrassment. Reminded me of my decades of being a bullying victim in all the schools I tried to study. Good article, my sweetheart. ❤

Mr Magic Posted on Jun 15, 2022 at 05:01 PM

Can't say this my fave episode either.

Not only was Iggy such a total jerk, but Sid and Stinky blabbed about the bunny pajamas, even when they promised not to. And look at the mess they got Arnold into!

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