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Arthur's New Year's Eve

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"Arthur's New Year's Eve"
Arthur's New Year's Eve Title Card.png
Season/Series: 1
Number in season: 30B
Original Airdate: United States November 15, 1996[1]
Canada February 14, 1997[2]
Written by: Joe Fallon
Storyboard by: Darren Brereton
"Arthur's First Sleepover"
"Arthur Meets Mister Rogers"
Read transcript
"Arthur's New Year's Eve" is the second half of the thirtieth episode in the first season of Arthur.


On New Year's Eve, Arthur and D.W. are determined to stay up until midnight to see what occurs.


Arthur has never stayed up until midnight on New Year's Eve, because his parents have always told him that he is too young. He has tried a couple of times on his own to stay up, but has fallen asleep before midnight each time he tried; therefore, this year he chooses not to even try to stay up until midnight.

Arthur's New Year's Eve

On New Year's Eve, Arthur is making his bed when Pal jumps on it, wanting to play. Jane comes in and tells him that she and David are going out for New Year's Eve, and that Grandma Thora will be babysitting. D.W. comes in and asks Jane if she can stay up until midnight and Jane tells her that she's too young but she gives Arthur the permission to stay up until midnight but he says that he is not going to.

Arthur and Pal then go outside to play in the snow and Prunella stops by and asks Arthur if he is going to stay up to see the green flash tonight on New Year's Eve and that if there's no green flash it has to stay the same year again.

After Prunella leaves, Arthur goes and tells Francine about the green flash, but Francine tells Arthur that there is no green flash, and that on midnight on New Year's Eve, everyone has to throw out last year's calendar, because it becomes officially illegal and that the New Year's Police will check on people and anyone who still has last year's calendar will be arrested. Arthur then imagines that the New Year's Eve police come to his house and find that Grandma Thora still has last year's calendar, and arrest her.

Arthur then goes to the Barnes' house and tells Binky about the New Year's Eve Police, but Binky says that there isn't any New Year's Eve Police. He says that on New Year's Eve at midnight there's this wrestling show that comes on T.V. where this baby (representing the new year) and this old man (representing the previous year) fight and if the baby wins the New Year begins but if the old guy wins the baby has to go and live with a groundhog and there's six more weeks of winter. (Binky obviously is mixing it up with Groundhog Day.)

Arthur then goes to Buster's condo and tells him about the wrestling show to which Buster says that's the silliest things that he's ever heard. Buster then says his theory on where all the parents go to on New Year's Eve. He says the parents talk out all the rotten things they did to their kids the past year, and plan new awful things to do to kids the next year. However, what Arthur's friends explained to him about New Year's Eve were just complete myths.

Back at home, D.W. develops a plan to stay up till midnight with pinching and ice cubes. Later that evening, their parents go out, leaving Grandma Thora in charge of Arthur and D.W. D.W. gets out her alarm clock and ice for her plan, and begins to hypnotize herself with her clock. Meanwhile, Grandma Thora and Arthur are thumb-wrestling when thew see D.W. getting a glass of water. Later, they are playing Go Fish when D.W. goes to get another drink of water. Back in bed, she's feeling tired, so she sends an ice cube down her back, which makes her jump around and yelp. Meanwhile, Grandma Thora and Arthur are using their noisemakers for a practice run when D.W. comes in, saying she had a nightmare. Arthur then falls asleep on Grandma Thora's shoulder at 11:30. Half an hour later, it reaches midnight, but without anything fancy happening, much to D.W's chagrin. However, she feels better when telling Arthur about it.

Arthur is sad he missed it, but he cheers up after Grandma Thora tells him that as long as he remembers all the things he did in the past year, he didn't miss a thing, because that is what New Year's Eve is really about. Arthur thinks about this, and feels better. He even wishes Pal a Happy New Year, and adds that maybe they will see all the cool stuff his friends mentioned (like the green flash, the wrestling and the New Year's Police).



  • Pal is seen nearly licking Arthur's hot chocolate, even though chocolate is poisonous to dogs (in large quantities).
  • To commemorate the new year and the end of the show’s first season, the ending features a montage of clips from several previous episodes as Arthur is implored by Grandma Thora to remember all his memories from the past year.
  • Beginning in spring 2024, as part of a partnership with Bridge Multimedia, as well as funding provided by the US Department of Education (US-DOE), this and a few other popular episodes of the Arthur series were rereleased with the addition of an American Sign Language interpreter on screen, allowing individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to fully immerse themselves in the program. Interpretation was also provided to a variety of other popular Arthur episodes, the full list can be viewed here.
  • 4th Wall Break:
    • D.W. mentioning a time warp is in reference to the fact that even though the Arthur characters celebrate birthdays, because of continuity errors, they are always referenced to being younger or the same age they were, even if they are actually one year older.
    • After Buster tells Arthur the story of parents' New Year's Eve meetings, a UFO pops out of a toaster as a transition to the next scene. Arthur and Buster react to the UFO as it pops out.
  • Moral: Don't brag about something you got to something the other person didn't get for your own benefits.

Production notes[edit]

  • PBS traditionally re-airs this episode (and "Arthur's First Sleepover") every December 31 (or the Friday prior if the 31st is a weekend), including during the 2010s/2020s decade, a period where Season 1 episodes very rarely appeared in reruns.
  • A repeat of this episode aired on December 31, 2010 on KCET Los Angeles, which made it the last Arthur episode to air on KCET Los Angeles due to the station dropping its affiliation with PBS after 40 years on January 1, 2011.
  • Some TV providers incorrectly list this episode's original air date as June 2, 1997.
    • This is the last episode to premiere on 1996.


  • During the "green flash" sequence, the crowd's reaction, "Ooh! Ahh! Green!" is misinterpreted in the closed captioning as, "Ooh! Ahh! Mmm!"
  • D.W.'s glass of ice would have melted into water by nighttime, unless her bedroom was freezing cold.
  • Although Arthur wakes up only seconds after midnight, the alarm clock reads 12:05 when he holds it up.

Episode connections[edit]

Home Video[edit]