Season 12 Episode 4

For the Birds / Ungifted

Aired Daily 4:00 PM Oct 27, 2008 on PBS



  • Trivia

    • Goof: When Arthur and Mr. Ratburn are talking in the museum, Mr. Ratburn refers to Brain as Brain when he usually refers to him as Alan.

    • Postcards from You: The first postcard comes from New York, New York. Pascale, a nine-year-old girl says that the town has a huge population. There's many places that have a lot of litter, but she knows a place just down the street with very little litter-- Central Park. She points out areas that have just nature and animals, and encourages viewers to throw away any litter they see. The second postcard comes from Carli of Sebusco Estates, Maine. She goes out on a boat with her friends and lobster fisher. He pulls up lobster traps and throws one back that's no good because it's too small. Later, they go to the beach and find sea creatures such as moon snails and periwinkles. The postcard concludes with Carli eating lobster, stating "The best part about catching lobster is eating it."

    • Binky reads the title card for "For the Birds." It's the one where a giant egg cracks open containing Buster, Francine, Arthur, Muffy and the Brain and then they flee as a giant bird shows up. Binky also reads the title card for "Ungifted." It's the one where Buster neighs like a horse, and Arthur pats him on the shoulder and laughs.

    • The title of the second story originally appeared in schedule listings as "I Owe You One" and the plot information given referred to Buster paying back Arthur for various favors by doing favors for others. In "Ungifted," however, Arthur upsets Buster by giving away something that Buster gifted to him.

    • Muffy has a new digital camera in "For the Birds" called The Imp. She has evidently upgraded since "The Law of the Jungle Gym," in which she was excited about her new Zubeeza XQ-360.

    • Sue Ellen, Fern and Prunella are on the list of names for Mr. Ratburn's bird-watching club. Fern and Prunella are not seen until later on, however, and Sue Ellen is never seen as part of the bird-watching group, even though her name was at the top of the list.

    • In "For the Birds," Brain searches for a rare bird called the green-tailed grebe. This bird was first mentioned in the seventh season story "Elwood City Turns 100!"-- Brain was reading about this species of bird in a book and added it to a play about Elwood City's centennial. At one time, Elwood City was a swampland and many more of this bird existed.

  • Quotes

    • Arthur: Are you sure you don't mind spending half your allowance on a new model?
      Buster: Are you kidding? We can build something really cool together. It'll be fun.
      Arthur: Hey, how about this one?! It's the Dark Bunny mobile!
      Buster: I was thinking more of this combine. Look-- it even has a haylift attachment!

    • Buster: You gave my thresher to Binky?
      Arthur: Um, yeah. But technically it was my thresher, right?
      Buster: But I gave it to you. It was a present. Do you know how many hours I spent making it?
      Arthur: You said it only took you one hour.
      Buster: That's not the point! How about all of those other presents I've given you over the years? Have you given those away, too?

    • Arthur: What's that?
      Buster: A thresher called The Grain Reaper. It's a model of a machine from the 1960s that separated grain from stalks of wheat.

    • Brain: Buster, what are you doing here? Oh, wait, you must be trying to get footage of the "Skunkamunkah."
      Buster: Actually, no. I, uh, heard he left this area. I guess you're still looking for the green-tailed grebe. Mind if I tag along?
      Brain: Well, if it's just you, sure. I can use the company.

    • Buster: Hey, Brain, what do you think? Is it a woodpecker?
      Brain: Is it pecking at the wood?
      Buster: Yeah...
      Brain: Then it's a woodpecker. Now keep it down...

    • Brain: Since when are you interested in bird-watching?
      Muffy: Oh, I'm not. I just wanted an excuse to try out my new camera. The Imp! It has 6,000 megapixels-- the biggest zoom lens ever. See? A perfect shot of your nose hairs.

    • Mr. Ratburn: Were you looking for a particular bird?
      Brain: Well, actually, I was looking for... (He enters into a fantasy sequence.)
      Mr. Ratburn: I would have liked to share this award with my student, Alan Powers. Without him, I wouldn't have even looked for the green-tailed grebe. But since they can't cut it in half, I guess I'll have to keep the whole thing myself. Whoo-hoo!

    • Mr. Ratburn: You know, I once saw a bald eagle on this very spot. September 12, 1998. It's right here on my life list.
      Brain: What's a life list?
      Mr. Ratburn: A record of every different species of bird I've ever seen.

    • Dale Drowzman: (speaking on radio program) Today, we'll be talking about the green-tailed grebe. Long thought to be extinct, this rare bird may have recently been sighted in the woods around Elwood City.
      Brain: What?!

    • Brain: I'm looking for something very rare. In fact, it's so rare, I shouldn't even be talking about it.

  • Notes

  • Allusions

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