Amphibia: Froggy Little Christmas
November 27, 2021 5:03 AM - Season 3, Episode 9 - Subscribe

Mrs. Boonchuy has wanted a float for her restaurant in the city's Christmas Parade for years, and finally gets the opportunity, but turns it down due to the danger to the Plantars being discovered. So, Anne, the Plantars and their friends make one in secret. Meanwhile, the Plantars try to make sense of Christmas... and Andrias sends another robot assassin.

Froggy Little Christmas, written by Adam Colás and Jenava Mie, storyboarded by Silver Paul, Alex Swanson, Drew Applegate and Eddie West, and directed by Jenn Strickland, Roxann Cole and Kyler Spears.
  • Right off the bat we have some neat bits, they redid the Season 3 opening with Christmas trappings all around, including a border of lights around the screen and some festive changes to the theme song, but also a couple of re-animated elements. It's a pretty common gimmick these days (witness the Halloween episode of Season 2), but still, nice. Note especially: Anne's hair glows green in the last part. Christmassy!
  • From the first shot, it's evident that the Boonchuys celebrate Christmas in grand fashion. Domino, in their Santa suit, doesn't seem to be a happy kitty. Mrs. Boonchuy got a froggy angel for the top of the tree, which could not have been easy to find.
  • Last year's Christmas card theme: ungulates, with the Boonchuys in moose, giraffe and deer costumes. I think everyone should just pick a random theme to go with Christmas each year, it certainly beats the annual game show simulation visible around these parts.
  • Premise: the family restaurant has an opportunity to get a float in the city Christmas Parade, but although Anne's mom has dreamed of this opportunity she thinks it's too dangerous what with interdimensional frogs on the premises. Anne decides to secretly build the float anyway.
  • When Anne and the Plantars march out of the house determined to build the float, they've forgotten their disguises! It's seen from a distance so maybe they thought they wouldn't read well at that size.
  • MEANWHILE... on Amphibia... despite a frog robot making a snowbot, King Andrias' flying castle of doom soars above the landscape. Inside, three newts report to Andrias on the construction of their robot army. Andrias calls them "Triple B." We've seen them before: they were the newts Marcy was with in her introduction episode, Marcy at the Gates (206). Their names are Barley, Blair and Branson. They seem to have been put in charge of Andrias' warmaking apparatus after Lady Olivia and General Yunan tried to save Marcy a few stories back. (They are presumably in the dungeon.) Anyway, the three are in a festive mood, wearing Christmas elf costumes. Marcy seems to have told them about Christmas, and so they got Andrias a gift: a dragonfly drone soldier prototype, with VR stuff to control it with. Ah, using a human holiday as an excuse to produce military hardware in order to invade the human world. Not really keeping in the spirit, is it Triple B? Anyway, Andrias decides to use it to attack Anne on Earth, so I guess its radio controls can operate interdimensionally.
  • Back on Earth, a familiar-seeming human street-corner musician sings a song: "I'm sure you feel it coming/There's something on the breeze/It might be slightly snowing/or seventy degrees. Regardless of your hemisphere/The holidays are here/And with them come the tidings/Of this special time of year." It's the voice of Rebecca Sugar, creator of Steven Universe!
  • The Plantars are in their disguises while Anne tells them the float plans. Whew! Polly calls in the IT Gals, who apparently teach or attend at Palm Tree Community College. A sign is up reading "HAPPY HOLIDAYS #BYOD_PARTY." Other signs: "But first, COFFEE," "Use duct tape!", "DO's and DON'Ts," and there's a bulletin board tear-off flyer for a "Robot Babysitting Service." Pandabot is DJ'ing, and other robots are dancing.
  • Anne goes near a dancing catbot, who produces a cookie... that emerges out of a rear access port. Are you ready for the food-pooping robot future?
  • The Plantars, still trying to figure out this Christmas biz, find out getting presents is a big part of it, and Sprig realizes he has to get Anne a gift. He panics. Hop Pop remarks, wisely, "This is one of those stressful holidays, isn't it?"
  • Second stop: the museum where Dr. Jan works, to find decorations. Dr. Jan is still doing the ambush curator thing, scaring patrons with the history of mistletoe. "It's a not-so-jolly tale of monarchic betrayals and bloodshed originating in the 13th century!" Dr. Jan tells us it's called the Christmapalooza Parade.
  • The frogs ask Dr. Jan for info on Christmas, but they get too wide a scope on the holiday to get much practical information. Meanwhile, Anne is borrowing exhibits and diorama pieces for the float.
  • Jan's lectures nearly paralyze the Plantars, but fortunately L.A. is overloaded with unruly children, and they're stealing teeth from a dinosaur skeleton, distracting her. Hop Pop: "I think I'm startin' to get it. It sounds like Swamphollow Eve--but without the ritual sacrifices."
  • Back to the song. "A bucket of fried chicken/A costume for your dad/A demon who will stuff you/in a sack if you've been bad." Haaaa! "A reindeer who gets promoted/An old man confronts his fear/Of karma and mortality/This special time of year."
  • Suddenly appearing in the sky, it's Andrias' flying drone! He's not good at controlling it yet though. One of the Bs hands him a can of "Zap-o-rade," evidently an energy drink made from the Zap-a-pedes from way back in Season 1.
  • December 22. They get construction help from the temple. They buy lights from a mall store called "Bob's Bulbs." Sprig sneaks away to find a gift, including a creepy clown painting from Sad Clown Fine Art And Sundries. "Garbage! It's all garbage!"
  • December 23. The parents are making cookies! Mrs. Boonchuy makes the dough; Polly adds the grasshopper legs.
  • Frobo's eyes provide light for Anne's work on the parade float as she welds the star. (Welds? She's thirteen. She can't be properly certified for this kind of work.)
  • December 24: A single snowflake falls from the sky, lands on the Boonchuy mailbox, and is annihilated by flame. It's Los Angeles, after all.
  • A view of the city skyline has a billboard for "an original TV movie," "A Hunky Lumberjack for Christmas," from the "Wallmark Channel." Construct-A-Carnivore has a float in the parade, and Monday Cat is present in balloon form.
  • We get some backstory on Anne's parents, they're immigrants from Bangkok, and wanted to be part of the parade to better join the community. Awwww.
  • Andrias plays the pooper on this party; apparently the droid can robotify parade floats. The display on Andrias' VR display seems to read, in the frog language, "READY TO ROCK."
  • Float destroyed by Santa-Bot: Ted's Electronics. The IT Gals are ecstatic about the giant robot, but sadly it's trying to kill them. We discover their names are Ally and Jess! They have a paw print on their vehicle's gas pedal.
  • The robot has present-shaped rocket launchers. That flying drone thing is pretty amazing. Those three newts must be robotics geniuses!
  • Sprig: "Anne! Does Santa have a weakness?" Mr. B: "Should we throw him milk and cookies?" Santa-Bot tromps by an empty office with words strung up reading "YOU BETTER WATCH OUT."
  • They launch the tree at the bot, which apparently is planted in a big firecracker. Not asking questions.
  • Child watching Santa's implosion: "Daddy, is Santa gonna be okay?" Father: "Ha ha, no Timmy, I don't think so!" The ash from the robot resembles snow, which is kinda Christmassy if you don't examine it too closely.
  • Back on Amphibia, Andrias destroys the VR equipment in rage. We do get our first real appearance by Darcy, who, watching, says: "Pathetic. And you call yourself a king" while holding a 20-sided die, implying that she still has some of Marcy's tendencies. Andrias vows no one will stand before his army.
  • Anne's mother is laughing about how dangerous everything was. I hope the city doesn't blame them for the giant killer Santa-Bot that destroyed a float and crushed a car.
  • The Plantars finally get their explanation of Christmas, about spending time with the people you love, and exchanging expressions of that love. But Sprig still gives Anne a present: a little model of her. "Because--you're my hero!" Even Polly is moved.
  • "Whatever makes you happy/Whatever gets you through/Whatever lets you know/That I'm feeling this with you. If you believe it's special/Then that's what makes it special/It's a special, it's a special/It's our special time of year."
  • Anne, writing a letter: "I can't imagine spending the holidays without your family. I know how hard it is to be apart and not know if you'll ever see each other again. So I'm writing to let you know that your daughter is alive. She's trapped in another world, but I promise: I'm going to bring her back home safe. Signed, a friend." Envelopes addressed to: The Wu Family, Mr. Waybright and Mrs. Waybright. Evidently the Waybrights are separated.
  • Closing credits are Christmas themed, with illustrated cards along the line of those of the previous season enders. One of the cards has Sprig opening an action figure toy, Polly with a machine gun, although labeled NARF ("Oh Brain, it's perfect!") and Hop Pop with a book titled "How To DIRECT." Another has Domino sleeping on Frobo's head.
This is the last episode that we currently have a description for. Past seasons have tended to change the status quo significantly at the mid-season mark. With Andrias' robot army nearly finished, and a statement from creator Matt Braly that Season 3 is the final one, we're approaching the end of the show and major events coming up.
posted by JHarris (2 comments total)
 
"I'm a dino dentist!"

Was hoping for a Futurama easter egg, what with killer santa and all (Santa Claus is gunning you down)
posted by Marticus at 8:36 PM on November 28, 2021 [1 favorite]


Loved the Rebecca Sugar song! Such a fun episode.
posted by sleeping bear at 8:17 PM on November 29, 2021 [2 favorites]


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