Amphibia S3, Episode 9 Review
A few months back, fans of Amphibia got word that the first half of Season 3 would feature a Christmas special. And despite the 10th episode being meant as the midseason finale, that got pushed back in favor of this special. It makes sense why; Disney wanted to get it out for Christmas. Fortunately, “A Froggy Little Christmas” ends up serving as a pretty good replacement/halfway point for Amphibia’s final season. It’s got all the trappings of the holiday and sets us up for the show’s final act all at once. Plus, it’s got an original song written and performed by Rebecca Sugar. Having the creator of Steven Universe write and perform in your show is pretty amazing, if you think about it.
Also, note how the intro was changed to reflect the holiday season.
The Plantar’s First Christmas
It’s Christmastime in L.A., and as it turns out, the Boonchuy’s are hardcore lovers of the holiday, going all out with the decorating. However, the festive mood gets taken down somewhat when Mrs. Boonchuy decides to turn down her dream of making a float for the annual Christmas parade. With Mr. X hunting the Plantar’s, and Andrias still after Anne, they don’t want to take any chances. Feeling bad, Anne decides to surprise her parents by making a float in secret, with help from the Thai community and people she’s met since coming back to LA.
It’s a classic scenario for Christmas specials: person X wants to do something special for person Y, so they go all out. Still, it’s a formula that works, and seeing Anne show just how much she’s grateful to her parents for everything they’ve done is touching to watch.
Meanwhile, the Plantar’s, being frogs out of water, struggle to understand the meaning of Christmas. As in, their froggy little Christmas is about trying to make sense of the centuries of traditions and concepts that go into the holiday. That’s actually a very interesting concept, when you think about it. Christmas makes sense to people on Earth because most people at least know the concept. From an outsider’s perspective, Christmas can seem kind of confusing. It’s a mix of Christian ideas and folklore from across the world and pre-Christian festivals, plus the pursuit of capitalism. It can mean different things for everyone; in Sprig’s case, he tries to make Anne the perfect Christmas gift, only to get frustrated by his failures.
Andrias is On Santa’s Naughty List
Back in Amphibia, King Andrias’ plans are progressing faster than he had hoped. His army is almost ready to invade Earth, but Anne still remains a thorn in his side. Thus, he uses a prototype drone that he remotely controls in order to try and off Anne once more. And, just to be a jerk, he uses said drone to take control of a Santa float in the parade, creating an evil, Santa robot that openly attacks the Boonchuy-Plantar family.
This moment is far more important than some might realize. When he first sent the Cloak-Bot, Andrias instructed it to not be seen, not wanting to alert the authorities. Now, he’s not even trying to be subtle, caring more about seeing Anne dead. Granted, he disguises his murderous intent behind a Santa robot, but the fact remains that this was seen by everyone in LA. While Anne and the others manage to defeat the robot and return home safe, the event’s reported on the news. In other words, people will notice this, and start asking questions.
However, it turns out that Andrias may no longer need to worry about keeping his plans a secret. It’s revealed that his advanced robotic army is already massive. My best guess, it numbers in the tens of thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands. If they invade Earth, there’s little humanity can do to stop Andrias.
So yeah, this is bad.
A Froggy Little Christmas to All
For the moment, though, all is right with Anne’s world, with the episode ending on the final verse to Rebecca Sugar’s song.
Throughout the episode, we’ve seen an animated version of Rebecca Sugar play a song on her ukulele about Christmas and all the different ways people celebrate it. It’s a very non-traditional song, with lyrics referencing Krampus and even the Japanese tradition of eating KFC on Christmas. The point behind the song, though, is that Christmas is different for everyone. What matters is sharing it with the ones you love.
With that, and a touching end credits that shows Anne giving her mom the butterfly she got in Newtopia, the first half of Season 3 comes to an end. Amphibia will likely return for its final act sometime in Spring 2022, which will be a very bittersweet event. Until then, though, whether or not you actually celebrate the holiday, have yourself a froggy little Christmas, everyone.
I Give “A Froggy Little Christmas” a 4.5/5
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- It’s revealed that Mr. and Mrs. Boonchuy emigrated from Bangok to LA, meaning that they went through similar problems to what Anne did when she ended up in Amphibia.
- Anne writes anonymous letters to Sasha and Marcy’s parents telling them what happened to their daughters. Hoping to see them in the final act of the series!