Editor’s note: I’d originally had this post scheduled for Friday, I figured once a week was a posting schedule I could handle for sure, but then I got my first comment and decided to celebrate with an early post. I am nothing if not a sucker for approval from strangers.
In today’s episode we learn an important lesson about interdependence. It turns out that the water the Gorgs use to take their baths is the same water the Fraggles swim in, which is supplied by the water system in Doc’s workshop. When Doc turns off the water to do some repairs, the Fraggles and the Gorgs are both out of water. Also, Red planned a “swimming extravaganza” to show off how awesome she is, and hurts her friends’ feelings when she rejects their help setting it up, until Gobo shows her that she really can’t do everything all on her own. Sometimes you have to rely on your friends and then take credit for their accomplishments.
We also learn an important lesson in being a passive-aggressive jerk in order to teach your friends a lesson! When Doc turns off the water, the Gorgs end up draining all the water out of the Fraggles’ pond, and Red can’t have her swimming show, so she goes to Outer Space to steal Doc’s umbrella because Traveling Matt reported that umbrellas cause rain, after he saw humans opening umbrellas just as rain began to fall. I guess between this and the pipe bangers thinking that they bring back the water even though they have nothing to do with it, there’s also a lesson here about superstition and the post hoc ergo propter hoc logical fallacy, but I’m trying to keep these short ok. I mean I’m three episodes in and I haven’t even touched Traveling Matt’s messages as an exercise in defamiliarization and the value that can have to small children. Anyway, Red wants the umbrella but she’s too afraid to actually go out and get it. Gobo, totally predicting this state of affairs, just casually shows up because he wanted to “stretch his legs” and then hangs around oh-so-innocently until Red, humiliated, admits that she can’t do it. Then he’s all “oh, whatevs” and makes to leave until Red finally swallows her pride and asks for his help. Then Gobo is totally smug about how that’s all he was waiting for, and goes out and gets the umbrella for her.
Man, aren’t friends supposed to like, understand and support each other and help them save face, instead of being passive-aggressive and manipulative and making them humiliate themselves in front of you? If the other Fraggles are upset by Red’s actions, maybe they should…tell her? And explain why? But it’s all good because Red totally gets the message and doesn’t mind the sneaky way it played out. Also she lets everyone be impressed that she brought back the umbrella even though she actually wimped out. Gobo, being the show’s excellent and well-rounded Everyman we all sympathize with (also master of passive-aggressive manipulation), naturally doesn’t mind.
And all’s well that ends well in Fraggle Rock, even when your only water supply is threatened by mysterious forced entirely beyond your control, and you are sort of crappy to your friends.