The 7th and 8th episodes of Season 2 of VeggieTales in the House, now available on Netflix! In “Ready for Action,” Bob and Larry try to be police officers, and in “Sickabeezer,” Bob takes care of a sick Ichabeezer.
“Ready for Action”
First things first: I really like this title pic. It’s hilariously adorable.
Secondly, I really like that Bob and Larry actually connect together on something. At the start of this episode, they’re watching Tom Celeriac’s newest TV show about being a cop, and both Bob and Larry begin mimicking the mustachioed actor’s antics and both decide that they want to be police officers. That’s not to say that the two never agree or work together on anything, but Bob’s preferred activities are usually more . . . low-key, we’ll say. And Larry likes lobsters, ’nuff said.
Bob and Larry set out to find the only police officer they know (possibly the only one in town), Officer Wedge (Mike Nawrocki doing a voice much closer to his natural tone and what must be a nice change of pace). He tells them that to be a cop, you must have integrity – or, to be able to do the right thing even when no one is looking. That’s rather a simplistic way of putting it, but I suppose it makes it easier for kids to understand. Mr Lunt then comes out of nowhere and decides he also wants to be a cop. Wedge says only one Veggie can become his new partner, so they’ll have to undergo a series of tests to determine who it will be. Their first task: paperwork.
The trio go back to Bob and Larry’s house to fill out the mounds of reports, and after awhile, they all get bored. Bob is actually the first to quit, using the papers to pretend he’s a “tomato-bird.” (Mr Lunt: “I’m a bird plus whatever vegetable I am!”) Wedge then arrives with Grandma Asparagus. Her cat has gone missing (and by this point in the episode, it’s been almost two days). Without her glasses, Grandma Asapargus isn’t much help, so Wedge sends the three out to find Mr Fuzzyface, much to their disappointment since they want more action-oriented cases.
Predictably, Bob, Larry, and Mr Lunt get bored and decide to go back home to watch Tom Celeriac. Bob feels a little guilty for skipping out on the job and suggest they go try again, but Mr Lunt suddenly has an idea after trying to eat Larry’s pet lobster as a snack and takes off. The next day, he tells Wedge that he found Mr Fuzzyface, much to the officer’s delight. Then Wedge sets them to work doing training exercises while he sings a song about it. When they’ve finished, he announces that they all worked hard, but since Mr Lunt found the cat, he gets to be Wedge’s new partner (complete with sunglasses and mustache).
Grandma Asparagus, with the reluctant help of Madame Blueberry, has discovered that the lobster Mr Lunt gave her is not Mr Fuzzyface, and she tackles Mr Lunt and Wedge in their police car as they’re cruising through the town. Bob and Larry have found the actual cat and return him to Grandma Asparagus. Mr Lunt admits that he cheated and lied (“I did the wrong thing when no one was looking.”), so Wedge takes away his partner privileges and decides to let both Bob and Larry be police officers. (Mr Lunt: “I guess I’ll have to go back to my day job of having a different job every episode!”)
This episode starts off kind of in the middle of the action, so to speak. We open on Ichabeezer “sniccuping” (sneezing and hiccuping – why do cartoons always have to have weird illnesses??), and Bob there at his house to take care of him. There’s no explanation given for why he’s doing this, like if he was asked or somehow found out about it or what, but regardless, there’s Bob! (And Ichabeezer seems confused by this too.)
Bacon Bill and Petunia arrive and are surprised to see Bob, even though they seem to be looking for him, not Ichabeezer. (Very confusing.) They tell him that they’re off to go on their annual fishing trip to catch the mega-guppy, which Bob has been obsessed with since he was “tiny cherry tomato” (aw). Bob doesn’t even debate much about it; he expresses his regret that he can’t go, and goes back to taking care of Ichabeezer. Bacon Bill asks where Rooney is, and Bob tells him that Larry is taking care of him (Bacon Bill: “Poor Rooney.”) After they leave, Ichabeezer expresses his incredulity that Bob turned down the fishing trip and somehow inadvertently talks Bob into going anyway. Since Bob can’t leave Ichabeezer alone, he tosses him into a wagon and tows him down to the lake.
Surprisingly, Petunia is happy to see Bob and doesn’t seem to care at all that he’s technically shirking his duties. All she notes is that Ichabeezer’s added weight makes the boat heavy and hard to steer.
Meanwhile, Larry is doing a terrible job at taking care of Rooney, misinterpreting what the dog wants to do. Instead, they play checkers (Rooney wins) and video games (Rooney wins) before Rooney finally locks Larry out of the house until he finally gets it and takes him on a walk. Of course, that’s also a terrible idea since Larry can’t control Rooney in any way, and when they get back, Larry is exhausted. In a nice bit of continuity, Larry gets out the ice cream cart he drives for Pa, and tries to get ice cream for himself and Rooney, but the dog sees a cat and – having unwisely been tied to the cart – takes off after it, with Larry and the cart in tow. They careen through town and end up crashing into Pa’s store. They knock over a dozen shelves, and Pa angrily (and hilariously) knocks one over too.
That’s about it for the B plot, so we return to Bob and the others. Ichabeezer is delirious with . . . sniccup fever, I guess, and mistakes Bacon Bill for his grandfather (and Bill is all too happy with the idea of Ichabeezer being his grandson). Now suddenly Petunia regains some sanity and asks Bob, “Are you sure you’re putting his needs before your obsession with the mega-guppy?” Which is all fine and good, but where was that concern earlier?
The mega-guppy then appears, and Bob tries to hurry after it, but the boat is too heavy to row quickly. He looks around, trying to figure out how to lighten the load. The only thing that would make a difference is Ichabeezer, and so he actually lifts him up in an attempt to toss him overboard, but Petunia stops him. (Bacon Bill: “This just got dark.”) Bob knows it’s a terrible thing to do, and he puts Ichabeezer down and sadly watches the mega-guppy swim away.
When they leave, Bob apologizes for ruining their trip, and Petunia says it’s okay because he learned to put his own needs aside for others. If we’re being honest, though, no, he didn’t. He still took Ichabeezer away from the comfort of his home, did a pretty bad job of taking care of him, and if he had actually caught the mega-guppy, he would have felt fully justified in doing all that. So kind of a broken Aesop, there. In any case, Bob sings a song about pleasing God by going second, aka putting others’ needs before yours.
(Not sure why random Veggies were chosen as backup, but whatever.)
Bob takes Ichabeezer back home and cares for him properly. Ichabeezer makes a remarkably fast recovery and accepts Bob’s apology for trying to go fishing earlier. He even suggests that they go back out to the lake and try again (even though it’s night), but of course, Bob suddenly “sniccups” – and now it’s Ichabeezer’s turn to take care of a sick Bob.
Overall, neither of these episodes really did anything for me. “Ready for Action” was a little convoluted, though the pacing wasn’t too bad and it was nice to see Bob and Larry on the same side for once. “Sickabeezer,” I think, just really missed the mark with the lesson and suffers for it.
What did you think? How do you help your children understand integrity and putting others’ needs first? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Images: VeggieTales in the House from Big Idea Entertainment, DreamWorks Animation Television, and Bardel Entertainment