Dragons: Riders of Berk – “Gem Of A Different Color” Recap
The Riders of Berk are practicing hand-to-hand combat, as there may be instances where they aren’t able to rely solely on their dragons. Fishlegs, however, opts not to attend and instead heads to a nearby island with his dragon in order to relax. There, the two of them find a gem that rapidly changes colors and are told it’s a lucky gem when they take it back to Berk. The town goes wild over this news, clamoring to buy it from Fishlegs, so he decides to return it to where he found it so that he can have some peace. When he does so he and his friends learn that this was a good thing to do, as the “gems” are actually dragon eggs. But Snotlout – who was tailing them in order to take the “gem” for himself – doesn’t learn this news and takes several of the eggs to sell in Berk. When he does just that in town his friends confront him with the truth and the fact that their mothers would be lured to attack the town, but he shows no remorse and brags about being rich. The Riders of Berk, seeing that he will be no help, decide to gather up the other eggs. They find Ruffnut and Tuffnut, who had bought one of them, but are then attacked by the Changewing dragons – dragons that are capable of turning invisible as they blend in with their surroundings. The dragon takes its rightful egg from the duo, causing the Riders of Berk to report to Stoick. They ultimately decide to evacuate the town while the others gather the eggs that were sold, but after doing so they discover Snotlout kept one of the eggs for himself. Fishlegs, angry over constantly being mistreated by Snotlout and knowing how the dragons must feel to be separated from their children, goes berserk and intimidates Snotlout into giving up the egg. He then heads into Berk and pleads with the Changwings, who appear to understand him and take the egg while leaving him alone. Fishlegs faints afterwards, but is content that everything is back to normal. The next day, he works with Hiccup to record the Changewings in the Book of Dragons, and finally builds up the courage to face Snotlout in hand-to-hand combat. The episode comes to a close as the two of them charge one another.
Most people learn from their mistakes. Others repeat them over and over, not even realizing that mistakes are being made. I’m not sure what the writers were thinking when they wrote the first season of this show, but they had a tendency to re-use many of the same plot points without realizing how much this would wear down the audience. In the first half of the season this was the issue of dragons being banned in every other episode, while in the second half it’s been Snotlout’s awful behavior. In the movie, he was a self-absorbed jerk, but this show is turning him into a sociopath. In one episode he pushed Fishlegs into a deep hole for no reason, and here he knowingly keeps a dragon egg even after being told this would cause the village to get attacked. Then when the dragons do attack, he tries to hide the egg even as the town was being evacuated.
He isn’t supposed to be a character that we’re meant to hate. I didn’t hate him earlier on in the season, after all, and I didn’t hate him in the movie. So why do they think it’s just a great idea to make him to be more despicable than Alvin the Treacherous or Dagur the Deranged? When one of your “heroes” is worse than the designated villains, you have a problem. I thought I would at least take solace in the fact that Fishlegs was going to confront Snotlout about his behavior, and while he did to some extent, all he did was knock over a weapon cart and threaten him. Considering how the episode started with hand-to-hand combat training, I had hoped Fishlegs would have just beat the tar out of him. It’s implied he did in the ending, but they don’t show it. They should have shown this! Snotlout’s behavior ruined this episode for me, and while I liked the new dragons I can’t say that they were enough to save this episode. Snotlout needs to get fixed, and soon.