Amphibia: Hollywood Hop Pop/If You Give a Frog a Cookie
November 20, 2021 3:43 AM - Season 3, Episode 8 - Subscribe

Hollywood Hop Pop: Hop Pop, a failed actor in Amphibia, gets an audition for a Hollywood commercial and nails it, and it gets him an audition for a big movie role, but his face being everywhere makes it easy for Mr. X to track him down. If You Give a Frog a Cookie: the Plantars are homesick, resulting in Anne seeking the help of crazy Dr. Frakes, who's been working on a portal machine, to try to get them back home.

Hollywood Hop Pop, written by Michele Cavin, storyboarded by Eleisiya Arocha and Danny Ducker, and directed by Roxanne Cole and Kyler Spears.
  • The opening has changed slightly, showing Core-possessed Marcy ("Darcy") in the opening instead of Marcy in the rejuvination tank.
  • After seeing Anne and the frogs touring Newtopia via tour bus last season, we get to see them doing the same thing in Hollywood!
  • We continue along Hop Pop's personal journey as a failed actor, which turned up in earlier episodes A Caravan Named Desire (203b) and Temple Frogs (304b). Hollywood is rather a bigger pond for a poor Amphibia frog to swim in though.
  • Hop Pop wonders if he'd have a chance in Hollywood. Anne: "Possibly. But Mr. X is after us, and he's seen you, so we need to keep a low profile." Sprig & Polly: "He's gone." Anne starts to chase, but stops. "You know what? I do not have the energy for this."
  • The sidewalk Elmo-like creature breakdancing has a sign reading TIPS OR ELSE.
  • Hop Pop runs into an "old fogey" audition and befriends a nice, short elderly man with a familiar voice (Wallace Shawn!) named Humphrey Westwood.
  • Humphrey Westwood's resume. Occupation: Hopefully working for you!!!!! Experience: 68 years alive!!!!! Education: Born hard and raised to the ryhthm rhythm of Burbank's beating heart, I learned two fundamentals--(remainder is off-screen)
  • Hop Pop's catchphrase is: "Say WHAT??" (echoes) He gets the part which is... not ideal, from a laying low standpoint. Anne: "Are you KIDDING?"
  • I like the variety of the commercial's production staff.
  • Hop Pop is sad that he took Humphrey's place in the audition line and got the part, even if it was at Humphrey's urging.
  • When Anne says "But as long as it's for something small that no one sees, maybe it'll be harmless," you can just imagine the next story beat.
  • Hop Pop: "How did I get inside the picture box? And why am I saying lines from that play I did yesterday?"
  • Anne's parents are not helping. "Oh! Do we live with someone famous?"
  • What has Mr. X been doing all this time? Feeding the frogs from the theater. We also get to see inside his house! Cereal (closed with a clip) "Fiber O's." He has alien salt-and-pepper shakers (Peridot would love him), a couple of pictures of who seems to be RuPaul on the refrigerator (one glamour, one carrying a checkered flag), and what seems to be magnets of a Space Invader and a Galaxian ship.
  • He sees Hop Pop's commercial! His computer is able to tell where something is filmed just from the footage, which is factually inaccurate, but does move the story along. "And they said I was a fool to not pay for ad-free streaming!"
  • Hop Pop's face is on billboards, car toppers, the side of a skyscraper, and on T-shirts and mugs. At the T-shirt shop: "We accept Wenmo." Anne is pretty overwhelmed. "You have a catchphrase?"
  • Uh-oh. The background lore stuff is surfacing a bit. Mitch Harbor, director of Fumigators I, II and IV. (I am getting reminded of the Ator and Deathstalker movies from the gap in the numbering there.)
  • Hop Pop's "SAY WHAT?" zooms out to reveal: they're on the Walk of Fame, an ad for "Ghoul Tours," a theater marquee for the El Capitan, and a pair of banners reading out the name "KIMY JIMEL." I see what you did there storyboarders. Sadly for their attempts at laying low, Hop Pop's catchphrase is super distinctive and very loud.
  • Hop Pop is struck by the opportunity and runs to the audition, but Mr. X is on his trail. Polly outright hijacks a cart on the studio lot to pursue.
  • It looks like they're filming a new Tarantula-lad movie. And is that a Suspicion Island episode? Sprig: "Wait. Suspicion Island's not real?" Polly: "Doy." Anne: "Don't be so gullible dude." Also Primthistle Manor!
  • Humphrey works at the studio as a janitor, and Hop Pop, in a gesture of extreme kindness, gives his audition to him... which also means Mr. X catches the wrong person again.
  • Mr. X: "Jenny, I'm gonna need some ice cream, girl. A lot of ice cream." Gender confirmation!
  • Hop Pop admits afterward that now, he'd rather be a director. Anne pushes him out of the cart.
If You Give a Frog a Cookie", written by Todd McClintock, storyboarded by Cheyenne Curtis and Cassie Zwart, and directed by Joe Johnston.
  • The Plantars are flooding the lawn to be reminded of home, but it doesn't help. Anne made them cookies, but Anne's mom convinces her to go talk to them--and then steals a cookie. "How did she get them so crunchy?" Anne: "Oh, that's the cicadas!"
  • They've also made a miniature recreation of Wartwood with recreations of several town characters. I like pseudo-Loggle. Sylvia is a clothespin.
  • They get a call from Dr. Jan! She knows a "Dr. Frakes" who might be able to get them home, but wants to vet her first. Anne is so upset by how sad the Plantars are though that she tells them that they'll go right over.
  • "Doctor Frakes' BRAiNASium" It's a kids' science museum! It's seems a bit like the old Double Dare set. Polly: "Woah! So this is where they keep all the dark Earth magic!"
  • The lady who meets them at the door, Terri, is voiced by Kate MiCucci, Sadie from Steven Universe!
  • Dr. Frakes seems... off, but claims to have a portal to another dimension! Anne and the Plantars claim to be reporters, and Frakes can't resist showing it off, the unveiling accompanied by "Dr. Frakes Super-Mega Cool Playlist 2003."
  • Frakes seems to be a disgraced scientist upset with her position running a kids' science museum. Frakes' experiments in the back room are: "Frakes Ferrofluid," a blobby spiky ball in liquid that looks like an artistic interpretation of YouTube ferrofluid videos, a "Frakes Fractal," a lumpy folded blob-thing, and her "Frakes Field," which we don't see.
  • We get a close-up look, for a split-second, at the ID card they used to get through the security door. It reads, "BRAINASIUM STAFF Terri," and has a picture of Terri that looks like she was surprised by the camera flash.
  • "Volia! The Frakes Portal Chamber! It all began a few months ago...."
  • "When the city was hit with a wave a very strange energy..." flashback shows Anne opening the Calamity Box. We see that, when it was opened, there was a bright flash in L.A. that caused electrical disturbances, and a portal to open in Frakes' lab. A portable CD player was sucked into the portal, the one that they got from The Curator's museum back in Amphibia!
  • They open the portal, but it's not Amphibia. It's some other weird alien world with a big ringed planet in the sky! It does cause an electrical disturbance in the Brainasium though.
  • The disturbance knocks off the frog's disguises. Frakes uses her Frakes Field, which turns out to be a force field capture device, to capture them. Well that's great. She wants to dissect them because she's insane.
  • Anne is determined to save them, and Terri wants to help because, as previously noted, Frakes is insane.
  • Frakes takes the Plantars right through the Brainasium, right by a lot of surprised-looking parents and kids, to the Dissection Lab. Sheesh lady.
  • Terri is cornered by a horde of hungry kids, pointing at her granola bar and moaning SNACKS. Terri to Anne: "Go! I'll be fine!"
  • Frakes has a weird dissection machine like out of a James Bond movie, with spikes and saw blades (the "FRAKES SLICE-O-TRON"), and Anne can't get into the room through the ID lock. For a sec I was worried that Anne would have go Calamity to get them out (something that's she's only had to use against Andrias and his minions so far), but Terri comes through with her ID card.
  • Frakes threatens Terri with a bad reputation, but I get the sense that not a lot of sensible scientists really care what Dr. Frakes says about anything.
  • Anne saves the Plantars by blocking the Slice-O-Tron with a giant plaster ear. If that's an injoke, it's over my head. She, the Plantars and Terri run out of the Brainasium, but Dr. Frakes has broken out of the lab and is chasing them with the Slice-O-Tron's spinning saw blade... through a building full of now-traumatized little kids.
  • Anne halts Frakes by throwing her cicada cookies into her hands and shouting "Hey kids! Snack time!" Aah, it all comes together!
  • Anne tells the frogs they have got to stop guilting her. Hop Pop: "The Plantars always had powerful guilting skills!" In the end, while Terry lost her job, she still wants to help the Plantars get back to Amphibia, and thinks may be able to build a portal. We have plot progress, and Anne didn't have to go all scary-glowy to save the Plantars.
  • It's the fun closing again! Next episode is the Christmas episode, with a song by Rebecca Sugar!
posted by JHarris (2 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Well, those two episodes were more enjoyable than some of the others this season. I wonder if Dr Frakes is a reference to Jonathan Frakes, or I am a bigger fan of Riker than the show writers.

Also, do Dogs in Space!
posted by Marticus at 6:46 PM on November 21, 2021 [1 favorite]

One of those Frakes portal pictures was 100% The Owl House. I’m sure of it.
posted by sleeping bear at 10:03 AM on November 23, 2021 [2 favorites]

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