When their mother accidentally brings home quality groceries instead of the bargain bin junk that they’re used to, Anais leads her brothers on an investigation in order to learn why they’re so poor and what their mother is hiding from them. However, they soon learn that someone doesn’t want the truth to be revealed and has set out to stop them.
Cartoon Network accidentally aired this episode on a Thursday morning, and while I don’t believe many kids in the target demographic had the opportunity to watch it due to school, I am confident that it will delight its audience in subsequent airings. I really enjoyed this episode. It gave us a glimpse into the past and explained the reason for the Wattersons’ financial situation, which had been poor despite the fact that Nicole works herself to exhaustion at the rainbow factory. Richard, at the dawn of the internet age, mistakenly spent the budding family’s savings on a star when he thought he was investing in property that would secure his children’s fortunes in the future. He spent the whole episode trying to prevent them from finding the truth, but unlike in “The Prank”, his efforts never put the children in danger. The danger they found was on their own. That’s a big step up for Richard, and at this point in the second season he easily receives the award for “most improved character”.
This was also a very amusing episode, with one joke in particular leaving me laughing for what seemed like minutes. While examining what they own to see how cheap it is, Gumball picks up a DVD for “How To Ratatwang Your Panda”. It’s a reference to Vídeo Brinquedo and their numerous knock-offs that they create in order to mimic the latest blockbusters. The show could have stopped there and it would have been great, but then they went and showed some of the movie and it was probably a step up from the real deal. As an animation fan, I’ll have been able to enjoy that joke more than people who aren’t aware of Vídeo Brinquedo, but it was easily the best part of the episode for me. There were many other funny moments, like Gumball’s string of dreams, and I also liked seeing Anais participate in the episode and employ some slapstick comedy. Nicole “stealing her thunder” at the end, much to her chagrin, was also welcome. I’d still like Anais to let her hair down more often, figuratively speaking, but I had no problems with her performance in this episode. The whole episode was very well done.