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Season 5 Special 
The Journal 


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The Journal
Arnold finds his father's journal, which tells the story of how his parents met, how they got Abner, Arnold's birth, why they went on their "last" trip...and one last surprise
Written by Craig Bartlett, MIchelle Lamoreaux, and Joseph Purdy
Directed by Raymie Muzquiz
Storyboard Supervisor: Tuck Tucker
Animation Director: Christine Kolosov
Storyboard Artists: Ron Brewer, Miyuki Hoshikawa, Tim Parsons, Stephen Sandoval, Dave Smith

Cast:
Arnold - Alex Linz
Miles (Arnold's father), Abner - Craig Bartlett
Stella (Arnold's mother) - Antoinette Stella
Helga - Francesca Smith
Gerald - Jamil Smith
Stinky - Christopher P. Walberg
Harold - Justin Shenkarow
Grandpa, local priest (at wedding) - Dan Castellaneta
Grandma, mother of boy in tram - Tress MacNeille
Eduardo - Carlos Alazraqui
Boy afraid to leave tram - Jeremy Suarez
A number of parts were uncredited: La Sombra, Eugene (baby Eugene spoke at the end), Sid (baby Sid cried after hitting Stinky with a rattle), Eugene's father, and the laughing boy and his father that appeared early in the episode

  • Things we learn in this episode: Arnold's parents' first names (Miles and Stella); Phil is Miles's father; Arnold is named after Stella's father; Abner was a wedding present.
  • When Stella gives Arnold his name, she says, "It was my father's name", which implies that Arnold's other grandfather had died before he was born (otherwise, she would have said "is" instead of "was"), so there's one explanation as to why Arnold's "other grandparents" are never mentioned in any episodes.
  • Arnold knows his parents left on October 5, but Grandpa didn't mention this in "Parents Day".  Then again, maybe he told Arnold the next day or something...
  • The journal was found in the attic - but Arnold lives in the attic, doesn't he?
  • Stella is the doctor, but in "Parents Day", Grandpa tells Arnold that Miles is the doctor.
  • For the record, "Stella" is Italian for "star".  For that matter, "La Corazon" is Spanish for "the heart", and "La Sombra" (the villain) is Spanish for "The Shadow".  (I had trouble figuring this out, as Grandpa definitely pronounces it "La Sambra".)
  • Miles telling Stella not to look at La Corazon sounds a lot like the ending to Raiders of the Lost Ark, when Indiana Jones says not to look at the Ark of the Covenant.  (There's another Indiana Jones reference later, when Miles uses his whip to catch the loose tram.)  Miles yelling "Stella!" as he dives for the runaway tram is almost certainly a reference to A Streetcar Named Desire.
  • Also for the record, Prince Charles was with his brother, Prince Andrew, when he entered St. Paul's for his wedding to Diana.  (The bride and groom never enter together; it's bad luck.  Speaking of Diana, I'm glad to see I'm not the only person who doesn't call her "Princess Diana", which she wasn't supposed to be called, as it is supposed to apply to daughters and granddaughters of kings and queens.)
  • If you're not going to mention Arnold's last name, don't do yet another "we'll tease telling you but it's interrupted" gag.  There's enough of that with "Where's Springfield?" on The Simpsons.
  • Where did Grandpa get a barbecue grill in the middle of the San Lorenzo jungle?
  • The only way Miles can get from a stationary tram onto one that's quickly falling away from him is to fly.
  • Grandpa's fortune cookie said "13 13 666", which hardly means "things are looking up".  (For those of you who don't know, 666 is the mark of the Anti-Christ mentioned in the Bible.)
  • When they go back to San Lorenzo from Rio, the written journal mentions "the Rio San Lorenzo" (the San Lorenzo River).
  • Most of the time, the journal just has written in it what Grandpa reads.  However, in the part right after the wedding, it says: "It was the hottest night the jungle had ever known, and I'm not talking Centigrade...  Stella was unbelieveably beautiful, wearing nothing but a smile.  Trembling, I took a step towards" (the page ends there).  To think it was rated "TV-Y" ("suitable for all ages, especially younger children")...  (However, Stella is wearing something besides a smile in the scene just before Grandpa slams the book closed.)  By the way, "Centigrade" is the old word for "Celsius" (the metric temperature scale); as a scientist, Miles uses metric measurements a lot (another place in the journal has a distance listed in kilometers).
  • When they went flying back and forth for the ingredients, I'm not sure about the second map, but the first and third ones have Tiyo Point and Shaler Plateau, which are both at the Grand Canyon.  (The line in the upper right corner of the third map is the Colorado River.)
  • At the "welcome home" celebration, Mr. Hyunh is playing trombone, Oskar trumpet, and Ernie...well, it's too small to be a Sousaphone but too big to be a Tuba or Euphonium (maybe we can call it a Langophone, after the show's music writer?).
  • Somebody at Nickelodeon must have been asleep: Stella said "pregnant".
  • Grandpa reads "Stella grows more and more pregnant with Arnold"; presumably, Grandpa threw "with Arnold" in, as they wouldn't know the baby would be a boy yet, much less have him named already.
  • Volcanoes don't really erupt like that; besides, if they did, the fiery ash that came out would have set pretty much the entire jungle on fire.
  • Arnold is born with pretty much a full head of hair.
  • The first thing Miles says to Arnold is "Hey Arnold".
  • In the park (in the scene where Arnold climbs the slide) are Gerald and his parents, Helga and her father, Phoebe and her mother (Big Bob is trying to tell Reba something), Rhonda with Sheena's Aunt Shelly (with Rhonda's parents sitting on a bench nearby - I guess Shelly was Rhonda's nanny back then), Eugene and his father, Harold (who's supposed to be four years old at that point if Arnold is one), Sid, and Stinky.
  • Revisionist History:
    • The story of how Miles first met Stella is slightly different (for example, they leave out the entire "schooner / clipper ship" bit)
    • Miles is seen giving Arnold his hat outdoors, but in "Arnold's Hat", he does it indoors.
  • Give credit where credit is due: when the episode first aired in the USA, Nickelodeon used its "split-screen" credits, one of which read: "ADR - Chris Jensen for Earthsalt Studios (This credit was request by Earthsalt.  Please advise me on the placement etc. of this credit)".
  • In the two-part version, part one ends when Grandpa has to go to the bathroom (and says "Never grow old, Arnold!") right before Miles and Stella go back to San Lorenzo, and part two has Grandpa giving a brief recap of part one at the beginning, although he leaves some parts out (for example, in the sky tram rescue, he says something like "I don't remember this part at all").
  • "Arnold found the map!  Now what happens?"  That's a long, and highly political, story...

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