Arthur (season 13)

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Arthur (season 13)
Country of origin
  • United States
  • Canada
No. of episodes 10 (20 segments)
Original network PBS
Original release October 12, 2009 (2009-10-12) – April 9, 2010 (2010-04-09)
Season chronology
← Previous
Season 12
Next →
Season 14

The 13th season of the television series Arthur was originally broadcast on PBS in the United States from October 12, 2009 to April 9, 2010 and contains 10 episodes. All episodes from this season aired on several countries outside the U.S., such as CBBC in United Kingdom and TVOKids in Canada, prior to their U.S. airdates.


Episodes from this season were produced together with season 12. As a result, the episodes from this season were aired on several countries such as Canada, United Kingdom, and Australia, prior to the U.S.

One of the most notable episodes, "The Great MacGrady" (co-sponsored by the Lance Armstrong Foundation) deals with the topic issue of cancer (a topic that had only been addressed once in an animated series). Executive producer Jacqui Deegan comments on the WGBH press release: "Cancer affects nearly everyone in some way. We hope that this two-part episode will empower kids, families and caregivers to talk about all the feelings that can come up when a loved one has cancer, and how they can work together and remain positive and hopeful through difficult times."[1] The episode premiered during the week-long programming block A Very Special Arthur. The episode's ending features a dedication to Leah Ryan, a former Arthur writer who died from leukemia on June 12, 2008. The character of Mrs. MacGrady was renamed Leah MacGrady in Ryan's honor.

"No Acting, Please / Prunella and the Disappointing Ending" is listed as the fifth episode of this season on PBS's official episode guide and "The Great MacGrady" as the first, although they are flipped in order according to original U.S. airdate.

Celebrity guests[edit]

Philip Seymour Hoffman guest starred as himself on the episode "No Acting, Please".

Lance Armstrong guest starred as himself — for the second time on the series — on the episode "The Great MacGrady".


A book version of the episode has been released on the PBS Kids website in English and Spanish before its airing date, along with information about cancer.[2]

The Lance Armstrong Foundation Headquarters and WGBH Boston Studios have shown pre-screenings of "The Great MacGrady" a week before its television premiere. In addition to viewing the episode, children had the opportunity to participate in activities in response to the contents of the episode. WITF Public Media Center also held a pre-screening event [3] along with several other public libraries.

A Very Special Arthur[edit]

"The Great MacGrady" was aired on October 19, 2009 at Arthur's regular time. This programming block was promoted as A Very Special Arthur. A promotional video[4] was shown the week before the programming block in between Arthur and other PBS Kids GO! television programs.

The decision for A Very Special Arthur was made by PBS and the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Their goal was to make the episode as accessible as possible to children, families, and educators so they would have the tools to discuss about the heavily impacting topic.[5]


No. in
Title Written by Storyboard by Original air date
156 1 "No Acting, Please / Prunella and the Disappointing Ending"[6] Cusi Cram
Jonathan Greenberg
Elie Klimos, Nadja Cozic & Élise Benoît
Robert Yap
October 12, 2009 (2009-10-12)
No Acting, Please: When Fern lands a role in the Elwood City community production of It Began With a Whistle, she fears that she isn't talented enough to be a star actress. But director Will Toffman, voiced by actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, teaches Fern how to have fun, be herself and truly shine.
Prunella and the Disappointing Ending: The final volume of the Henry Skreever series, The Knights of the Bouillabaisse, is released at last. Prunella and Marina compete to see who will be first to finish the book, but the two friends soon learn that speed reading does not always pay off.
157 2 "The Silent Treatment / Kung Fool"[7] Claudia Silver Robert Yap October 13, 2009 (2009-10-13)
The Silent Treatment: George wonders whether anyone would notice if he just disappeared, and so vows not to speak until someone notices him. Of course, his friends do notice, and they decide to cheer him up with a surprise party. This episode explores introversion. This episode is problematic because in older episodes "the treehouse" was in Arthur (not George's) backyard.
Kung Fool: Fern volunteers to help an elderly neighbour, Tony Wu, with his household chores, and then discovers his past life as a kung fu celebrity. Suddenly she imagines herself as his student, and she will soon be a kung fu master herself! But will Fern be disappointed to learn that dish cleaning and laundry folding are not really part of some special martial arts training? Or can she learn a valuable lesson in acceptance and friendship?
158 3 "Arthur's Number Nightmare / Brain Gets Hooked"[8] Peter K. Hirsch
Matt Steinglass
Elie Klimos & Élise Benoît
Aliaksei Kazakou & Michel Carbonneau
October 14, 2009 (2009-10-14)
Arthur's Number Nightmare: Buster finds a piece of paper with names of his classmates and numbers beside them. Arthur, Buster, and Francine believe it's a class ranking system based on behavior, and Francine tries to find ways to have a higher rank.
Brain Gets Hooked: Brain's addiction to a television show called Junior Island falls him behind his schoolwork.
159 4 "MacFrensky / The Good, the Bad, and the Binky"[9] Jonathan Greenberg
Claudia Silver
Michel Carbonneau & Stéphanie Gignac
Gerry Capelle
October 15, 2009 (2009-10-15)
MacFrensky: Francine and Brain are competing for Student of the Month. Brain is in the lead and Muffy wants Francine to win. Francine and Muffy frame Brain into doing a bad deed, so Francine becomes Student of the Month. The two girls continue to frame other students in fear of being caught from their first plan.
The Good, the Bad, and the Binky: Binky introduces Emily into wrestling when he babysits her. Emily's personality changes from being nice and polite to being loud and rough. Binky changes her back to her normal self when she begins to hurt other children in result of her behavior.
160 5 "The Great MacGrady"[10] Peter K. Hirsch & Leah Ryan Zhigang Wang October 19, 2009 (2009-10-19)
Mrs. MacGrady is diagnosed with cancer and the children react differently. Arthur and D.W. rush to her support, Francine is scared, and Muffy is initially unaware of Mrs. MacGrady's condition, but jumps to action when she realizes how to help. Lance Armstrong guest stars for the second time in the series.
161 6 "When Carl Met George / D.W. Swims with the Fishes"[11] Peter K. Hirsch
Cydne Clark & Steve Granat
Gerry Capelle & Nick Vallinakis
Robert Yap
April 5, 2010 (2010-04-05)
When Carl Met George: George meets a new friend named Carl, who has Asperger syndrome—a form of autism. George is unsure about how to act around his new friend, but Brain helps put autism in perspective for him so he can understand some of Carl's mannerisms. In some countries the episode was called "George and the Missing Puzzle Piece"
D.W. Swims with the Fishes: D.W. and James enter the preschool swim meet and recruit their older siblings to coach them. It all goes well until Arthur and Molly begin to get more competitive than D.W. and James.
162 7 "The Portrait of the Artist as a Young Tibble / The Secret Guardians"[12] Peter K. Hirsch
Guy Lancaster
Nick Vallinakis & Daniel Miodini
Daniel Decelles
April 6, 2010 (2010-04-06)
The Portrait of the Artist as a Young Tibble: The Tibbles sell their art works to raise money for a toy by using pity. But when they fail to sell a painting to Thora, the two discover that it takes more than crying to get money.
The Secret Guardians: Arthur, Binky, and Sue Ellen find a woodland oasis near their homes and vow to keep the area a secret. Soon they start to find evidence of human habitation and wonder if they've discovered an ancient civilization.
163 8 "Fernlets by Fern / Prunella and the Haunted Locker"[13] David Steven Cohen
Gentry Menzel
Zhigang Wang
Nick Vallinakis & Sylvie Lafrance
April 7, 2010 (2010-04-07)
Fernlets by Fern: Fern and Muffy start a greeting card business. Muffy paints the covers and Fern writes the poems. All the work makes Fern lose interest in writing, so she tries to figure out how to get make it interesting again.
Prunella and the Haunted Locker: Due to repairing Prunella's locker, she had to move to locker 237, which was rumored a haunted locker used by Jack Murphy.
164 9 "Paradise Lost / The Pride of Lakewood"[14] Jonathan Greenberg
Peter K. Hirsch
Nick Vallinakis & Daniel Miodini
Zhigang Wang, Jeremy O'Neill, Nick Vallinakis & Gerry Capelle
April 8, 2010 (2010-04-08)
Paradise Lost: Baby Kate begins to learn to talk, but starts to not be able to understand Pal anymore. They go to the Dolly Llama for an answer.
The Pride of Lakewood: To boost school pride, Arthur and his classmates form the Lakewood Pride Committee, which seems to pressure and brainwash students to have pride for their school. Sue Ellen and Brain don't join the group and are accused of not loving their school.
165 10 "Looking for Bonnie / The Secret Origin of Supernova"[15] David Steven Cohen
Jonathan Greenberg
Daniel Miodini & Jeremy O'Neill
Robert Yap
April 9, 2010 (2010-04-09)
Looking for Bonnie: Famous rock musician Dean Lomax visits Elwood City and asks George's dad to fix his guitar.
The Secret Origin of Supernova: Arthur is dismayed when he learns that the energy drink endorsed by Dark Bunny, his favorite super hero, is unhealthy. He goes in search for a new superhero who doesn't sell out from their principles, and ends up making his own superhero named Supernova.


  1. ^ "Arthur Season 13 Press Release: PDF" (PDF). WGBH. Retrieved February 13, 2011. 
  2. ^ "When Someone You Know Has Cancer". PBS. Retrieved February 13, 2011. 
  3. ^ Sara Wagner. "Free Pre-Screening of Arthur's "The Great MacGrady"". WITF. Archived from the original on April 1, 2010. Retrieved February 13, 2011. 
  4. ^ "A Very Special Arthur". PBS on YouTube. Retrieved February 13, 2011. 
  5. ^ "ARTHUR episode -- "The Great MacGrady"". OETA. Archived from the original on December 24, 2010. Retrieved February 13, 2011. 
  6. ^ "No Acting Please; Prunella Deegan and the Disappointing Ending". MSN TV. Retrieved February 5, 2010. 
  7. ^ "Silent Treatment; Kung Fool". MSN TV. Retrieved February 5, 2010. 
  8. ^ "Arthur's Numbers Nightmare; Brain Gets Hooked". MSN TV. Retrieved February 5, 2010. 
  9. ^ "MacFrensky; The Good the Bad and the Binky". MSN TV. Retrieved February 5, 2010. 
  10. ^ "The Great MacGrady". MSN TV. Retrieved February 5, 2010. 
  11. ^ "When Carl Met George/D.W. Swims With The Fishes". KLRU. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved March 12, 2010. 
  12. ^ "Portrait Of Artist As Young Tibble/The Secret Guar". KLRU. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved March 12, 2010. 
  13. ^ "Fernlets By Fern/Prunella And The Haunted Locker". KLRU. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved March 12, 2010. 
  14. ^ "Paradise Lost/The Pride Of Lakewood". KLRU. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved March 12, 2010. 
  15. ^ "Looking For Bonnie/The Secret Origin Of Supernova". KLRU. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved March 12, 2010. 
General references