Sunday, December 28, 2008

Adventures in Care-a-lot Episode 21

Belly Blanked 
For whatever reason, the episode starts off with four of the core five meeting up with Funshine in that park that isn't Rainshine Meadows and is apparently above Care Square, as they take a cloud (courtesy of Grumpy's belly badge) to get there.  Funshine uses his belly badge to create all kinds of fun, from beachballs and spinny discs to a waterslide.  Grumpy balks at the slide, so Funshine takes it upon himself to prove its safety.  He slides right into the river, whereupon he is hit (unbeknownst to him) by a ray from a mysterious (and apparently waterproof) machine.  He emerges without his badge, which Grumpy blames on the slide.  It's Oopsy who spots Funshine's badge floating down the river, but all their attempts to grab it fall flat.  Although Grumpy and Share are awfully cute as they fail at paddling a canoe together (and Grumpy even tells Share, "You're doing it wrong!").  Funshine understandably freaks out as his badge goes over the waterfall, and he considers it gone for good.  Grumpy, however, is adamant that belly badges "don't just slide off like that" and while he, Share, and Oopsy head offscreen, UR-2 and
 Rocketbottom rise up from the lake, holding the mysterious machine, a Peeler Beam, and report to Grizzle (at the bottom of the waterfall), who takes Funshine's badge for his own.
Back in his lair, Grizzle reveals his plan to his minions, who are recovering from their time at the bottom of the river: instead of taking all the Care Bears' belly badges, he just needs one.  So he sticks it to himself with glue, and predictably gets stuck to the floor.  So predictably, in fact, that UR-2 is able to finish Grizzle's sentences as he calls for a crowbar.
Meanwhile, the other Care Bears are worried about Funshine, who has spent all his time since losing his badge just moping around.  Share figures someone should tell Funshine that he's still the same with or without his badge, but doesn't think of the obvious candidate, although Cheer does.  So they get Oopsy and Wingnut to go cheer up Funshine, since neither of them have belly badges to speak of.  Funshine, however, is having none of it, stuck in an existential quandary of who he is without his badge.  Oopsy tries to lead Funshine to the right conclusion for this episode by prompting him, "You don't use your belly badge all the time, do you?" to which Funshine replies, "Well, no, not every minute." (Hey, I liked it.)  Eventually Funshine starts to come around, and the three of them engage in a montage of the kinds of physical activities that can be achieved without use of a belly badge.
Shortly after that, Grizzle has his minions lower him into Care-a-lot while he uses a snazzy new headset to communicate with them.  Unfortunately, he gets dropped too soon, losing his headset in the process.  And while he lands on his feet, he once again regrets ever installing nerve sensors in his suit.  He happens to land in front of Funshine and Oopsy, and he demands the Care Bears fear him, although Oopsy cutely points out a bad wording choice on his part.  Funshine soon notices Grizzle has his badge, and demands it back.  Grizzle, of course, does not comply with his request, but instead announces his intention to use the badge for evil, not fun, and demands the badge give him rays of light to fry all of Care-a-lot.  Instead, the badge gives him rays of light that brighten everyone's day.  Suitably confused, Grizzle tries again, but his demand for "sunbeams of power" only ends up with him tied up in powerful beams.  Not so powerful that he can't break out of them, though.
Funshine, tired of seeing his badge being abused, demands to know how Grizzle got it in the first place, and Grizzle all too readily reveals the Peeler Beam, brought down by Sargent Rocketbottom.  Funshine also demands, for like the third time, that Grizzle give his badge back, but Grizzle simply tells him that it's stuck onto his suit with 50 different kinds of glue.  So Funshine reminds him that belly badges can only be used for good, and Grizzle uses this to his advantage by using the badge to create a barrage of balls for a 'game.'  
The Care Bears take cover, but Funshine knows he has to stop Grizzle somehow.  Oopsy gives him a quick pep talk, and then Funshine enters the fray, challenging Grizzle to a game of Targetball.  At first, Grizzle doesn't take the bait, but after Funshine pulls the old "if you don't think you can win..." line on him, he goes at it with gusto.  While Grizzle is distracted, Funshine sneaks behind him and snatches the Peeler Beam away from Rocketbottom and uses it on the stolen badge.  It melts off Grizzle's midsection and Funshine quickly returns it to its proper place.  Since he wasn't paying attention, Grizzle needs a recap of what just happened, and is chagrinned when he realizes his mistake.  Rather than take direct revenge, Funshine startles Rocketbottom, resulting in the robot getting stuck to Grizzle's still-sticky middle.  Grizzle retreats to get some glue solvent.
The others congratulate Funshine for saving the day, and Oopsy points out that Funshine did it all without his badge.  Funshine has learned his lesson, and they end the episode by playing a round of Targetball with all the excess balls left behind by Grizzle.

What I want to know is 1. why didn't Oopsy comfort Funshine both sooner and without being asked by someone?  Maybe he felt awkward bringing it up?  And 2. why didn't any of the other bears with badges help defeat Grizzle this time around.  Yes, I know that it was so that Funshine could save the day without using his badge, but realistically (as realistic as a cartoon gets, anyway), there are myriads of other Care Bears who could have lent a hand, at least, even if Funshine was the one who got to be the big hero.

All Give and No Take
One fine day in Care-a-lot, Love-a-lot unveils her new fountain in her backyard.  Cheer and Share express a desire to see it all the time, which gives Love-a-lot an IDEA.  She gets Grumpy to move the fountain, and he in turn gets Wingnut to do the actual moving, and it lands with a splash in Care Square (but there's already a fountain in Care Square...).  McKenna shows up out of nowhere, and she just can't wrap her mind around the idea that Love-a-lot would rather have the fountain out where everyone can share it rather than keep it to herself.  
She would never give up anything of hers, she says, like her new favorite heart-shaped ring.  Share explains that it's better to give than to have sometimes, which inspires Cheer to put that principle into practice by organizing a Care-a-lot-wide giving spree.  Everyone is enthusiastic about this idea except McKenna, who eyes her ring worriedly, as if she knows that one way or another, she's not leaving Care-a-lot without giving it up.
Later, Grumpy attempts to wedge a part into his latest invention, but with no success, so he's in no mood to see Share.  Until she whips out the bumbleberry pie that she made, that is.  Seriously, he's all over that pie.  As Share leaves Grumpy's garage, she runs into McKenna, who still can't quite get why anyone would want to go to all the trouble of making something for someone else.  So Share takes her along to witness more selfless giving.  They come across Funshine playing with his "favorite" ball, which he gives to the two cubs (whose names are finally revealed to be Hugs and Tugs in canon) to stop them fighting over another toy.  Again, McKenna is stumped on why anyone would give away their favorite thing, but Funshine just tells her he knows the ball is in good hands.
Meanwhile, Grizzle has been watching the whole thing, and he is sick of all the 'giving and love stuff' (as is Mr. Beaks).  But he decides to use the Care Bears' giving to trap them by giving them something himself, and then luring them back to his lair.  Back in Care-a-lot, Cheer rewards all the Care Bears for going along with her idea by conjuring up a slide, which McKenna rushes to use first, despite her not doing any giving, nor even understanding why the bears were doing what they did.  Perhaps it is fitting, then, that her ride is cut short by Grizzle (literally, he sticks is foot out to stop her).  The Care Bears are suspicious, but Grizzle feigns innocence and hands Funshine a dripping package, which he announces is for everyone.  Funshine opens the package to reveal a dripping pipe with macaroni glued on it (nice touch).  Grizzle tells them it's part of a bigger gift, which they can pick up at a special party at his lair.  While not entirely sure, Cheer and the others decide to give Grizzle another chance, and go to his party, despite McKenna and Grumpy's hestitation.
While the Care Bears make their way to his lair, Grizzle has UR-2 test his plan to capture the bears once and for all.  That plan involves a lever that activates the fake package and grabs whatever is in its immediate vicinity.  And the codeword for pulling the lever is "Surprise."  With the plan all set, the Care Bears arrive and Grizzle ushers them into his lair.  Cheer spots the present and is impressed by its size; Grizzle fakes niceness and tells her that it's to make up for all his plots in the previous episodes.  As his guests head to the present, McKenna notices Mr. Beaks.  Grizzle tries to stop her from getting too close, but McKenna tells him how Mr. Beaks reminds her of a bird she used to have as a pet.  Touched by the resemblance(?), McKenna asks Grizzle if she can give Mr. Beaks something.  Grizzle agrees, and she gives him the ring as a little crown, getting that plot point out of the way.  The other Care Bears are pleased that McKenna finally gets it, and Mr. Beaks is so pleased by the gift that Grizzle is touched and starts to cry, which Cheer calls him out on.  Grizzle tries to deny it, but the sincerity of McKenna's caring for Mr. Beaks took him by surprise, and he tells Cheer so.  Which is the codeword, UR-2 rationalizes, and throws the switch.
The package grabs them all, even Grizzle, and traps them inside the box.  The other bears accuse Grizzle, but McKenna interprets their situation as Grizzle giving them "the gift of togetherness."  Grizzle, seeing an easy out, is quick to agree with her, and tells UR-2 to open the 'present' so they can get the party started.  UR-2 shrugs and does as he is told.  At the actual party, Grizzle busts out some funky dance moves, and even hops out of his suit so the two of them can dance together (I love it!).  UR-2 comments that Grizzle will probably regret it in the morning, but for the time being, everyone just has a good time.

This was actually a pretty decent episode, all things considered.  There were tons of crazy expressions, though (just check out the screenshots below).  I'm just wondering how Grizzle was going to take over Care-a-lot when the only bears who showed up where Funshine, Cheer, Share, Grumpy, and Love-a-lot.



TuffAZnailzs said...

In the episode ‘All Give and No Take’ the part wear “Share” gives “Grumpy” that bumble berry pie (his favorite) that she baked for him TOTALLY PROVES that she has a crush on him; she COULD have giving it to some one else but she picked HIM instead.
You all know that old saying “A way to a man’s heart is through his stomach”. = D

TuffAZnailzs said...

Oh; and as for ‘McKenna’…. *scowls and sticks tongue out* >: P