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Rhinoceritis! Gallery Transcript
Season 3 Episode 3b
Rhinoceritis Title Card
Rhinoceritis!
Original Airdate October 10, 1993
DVD release Season 3
Previous Episode Tricycle Thief
Next Episode Grandpa Moves Out

Rhinoceritis! is a Season 3 episode of Rugrats.

Characters Present

Synopsis

Angelica, playing doctor with her "Binks Mcgee Doctor Kit ", tells Chuckie he has "Rhinoceritis", a disease that will turn him into a rhino. When Chuckie feels a bump beginning to grown on his head, he believes Angelica's diagnosis is true.

- Description from Klasky Csupo

Plot

One sunny day, Drew pays his brother Stu a visit to help him and his wife, Didi, prepare their tax returns; and tagging along is his daughter, Angelica. As Drew however comes up to the door and sounds the home’s trademarked door buzzer, we see that he is oddly covered from top to toe in bandages, looking a little like a Egyptian Mummy; Stu answers the door and asks his brother what happened. Drew replies as he lovingly pats his daughter (who we see is dressed like a doctor, wearing a toy stethoscope and carrying a toy doctor’s bag) on the head “Oh, nothing my little girl here couldn’t fix right up”; and he further explains to his brother, whispering under the tone of his voice, that his daughter had been watching a medical TV Series called “Binks McGill - Preteen Brain Surgeon” and it’s inspired her to become a doctor - Drew was apparently playing doctor with his daughter earlier. Angelica then interjects - as she holds up her beloved Cynthia Doll which is also coved from top to toe in bandages - “Cynthia had an accident, but I cured her”; they then all walk into the house and Drew adds in “You know, I think she’s got an aptitude for healing.” They take Angelica to the backyard where her baby cousin, Tommy, and their friends, Chuckie, Phil and Lil are playing on the lawn with a ball; and as Angelica walks over to join them, Drew removes the bandages and asks his brother where his wife is, pointing out that he had promised her he’d come over to help prepare their taxes. Stu doesn’t immediately reply and insists that he’s got it all under control; they both walk back into the house, and we shift focus to the kids.

Tommy asks Angelica what’s in her “purse”, and Angelica corrects him in a bit of a grumpy tone “This isn’t a purse you dummy; this is my ‘Binks McGill’ ‘mergency [emergency mispronounced] rescue kit”, and she sets it down on the lawn and opens it. The 4 babies bounce in slight surprise and Angelica asks them: “Haven’t you even seen a Brain ‘Sturgeon’ [Surgeon mispronounced] before?” Chuckie asks Tommy what a surgeon (pronouncing it correctly) is and Tommy replies “I don’t know Chuckie, but if Angelica’s one, I don’t think it’s anything good”; Angelica replies (as she slaps her right palm with a toy reflex hammer she’s holding with her other hand), again in a grumpy tone, “I said ‘Sturgeon’ [flasely correcting Chuckie] dummies! A ‘Sturgeon’ is a doctor.” Tommy adds in, “I thought you had to be a ‘grown up’ to be a doctor”, and Angelica replies that Binks McGill is a doctor and is only 10 years old; Tommy points out that Angelica is only three, and Angelica rebuttals “so Binks is a little slow; now trust me, I’M A DOCTOR! [the babies gulp nervously at this outburst]”. Angelica, wanting to play doctor some more, says out loud to no one in particular that she needs to find some patients and asks out loud “Where, oh where could I find some patients?” The 4 babies - none of them willing to play doctor with Angelica - each point to one another; promptly however, Tommy’s dog, Spike comes into the scene and sits down in front of the babies, yawns and then lies down to rest. But as Spike tries to fall asleep in the sun, Angelica comes over and grab’s Spike’s right foreleg by the wrist and holds it up as if one were taking one’s pulse; and after a brief pause, she says “Uh-Oh! Looks like a ‘mergency!”; Spike, who of course doesn’t understand Angelica just looks away with a calm look on his face.

Meanwhile back in the kitchen, we see Drew and Didi at the kitchen table whilst working on her and her husband’s taxes; Drew is reviewing the family’s bills and invoices to see which expenses are tax deductible and which ones are not - He pauses for a moment and says to Didi that organization is the key to proper tax preparation. Right on cue however, Spike - having been covered in bandages by Angelica - runs into the room in a panic and crashes into the table (the bandages on his head were apparently obscuring his vision), knocking it on its side and sending Drew onto the floor, an adding machine that was on the table onto his head, and all the papers all over the kitchen floor! As Spikes runs back outside and Drew gets himself together, he angrily shouts at his daughter from afar “ANGELICA!!!”, and Angelica shouts back “I didn’t do it!”; Stu comes into the kitchen and says to Drew (having not seen it was Spike) “Oh good! I was worried you were gonna mess up my system.” We cut back outside where a confident Angelica is laughing to herself at the “success” of her handiwork on Spike, she points out to the babies how fast Spike was running and brags that she’s “just about the best doctor in the whole world.” Chuckie expresses doubt and points out that Drew sounded mad, but Angelica just claims it’s because he’s “threatened by working women”. Angelica then walks closer to Chuckie and claims that he’s not looking too well; Chuckie gulps nervously and replies “I’m not?” Angelica tells Chuckie to open his mouth; Chuckie starts to reply “But Angelica…”, but before he can finish, Angelica grabs his jaws and slowly pulls his mouth open. She listens for a brief moment and then says “Uh-Oh!”; Chuckie closes his mouth and replies nervously “Uh-Oh!?” Angelica then checks a “medical book” (really, it’s just a children’s alphabet picture book) she has in her doctor’s bag; after a brief look, she turns to Chuckie and says “Just as I thought.” Chuckie asks what it is and Angelica replies “Chuckie, you’ve got… Rhinoceritis!”

The other babies gasp in shock and Tommy asks what “Rhinoceritis” is; Angelica claims that “Rhinoceritis” is “the worstest disease there is” where the victim slowly turns into a Rhinoceros (starting with one becoming grumpy and their skin turning gray and scaly, a few other transformations, and finally ending with a horn growing out of his/her forehead). Chuckie however claims he feels fine, but Angelica claims that, while he feels fine now, he’ll soon begin to change; she then claims that Chuckie is already sounding a little grumpy. Chuckie, sounding a bit annoyed, replies “I’m not!”; but Angelica replies “See?” Chuckie insists that there’s nothing wrong with him, but Angelica points out a brown blemish on his right forearm hear his elbow; Chuckie says it’s just a scab, but Angelica claims “Sure, that’s what they want you to think; but it’s not a scab, it’s Rhinoceros skin, and pretty soon it’s gonna cover your whole body!”. Phil and Lil interject “Neat!”; Chuckie then replies that what Angelica is saying isn’t true and that she’s making it up, but after a brief pause asks “Aren’t ya’?” Angelica claims that another baby who lived down the street also thought Angelica was making things up when she told him he had chicken pox and that he’s now “pecking around a barnyard somewhere”; Tommy asks Angelica why his parents aren’t helping him, and Angelica claims it’s because “they need the eggs”. Chuckie still correctly believes Angelica is making it all up, and Angelica frustratingly replies (as she closes her doctor’s bag and picks it up) “Fine! But don’t come crawling back to me when you start growing a horn” and she walks away to play doctor somewhere else in the yard. Tommy asks where Angelica is going, and Angelica replies “I’m gonna make my rounds and get in 9 holes of golf before sundown”.

Even though Angelica was of course making it all up, Chuckie is to little to know this for sure and he promptly begins to feel very doubtful and anxious, and he tells his friends he doesn’t feel good. Phil (who doesn’t understand that Chuckie is only feeling anxious) asks Chuckie is his feet are turning into hoofs, and Lil (who’s sharing her brother’s misunderstanding) asks if Chuckie is growing a horn in the middle of his head (whilst pointing to her own forehead); Chuckie, who also doesn’t understand that he’s just feeling anxious says to himself “I knew it, I’m a goner; I wonder how long I got left to be a normal kid.” Phil, trying to make Chuckie feel better, asks if he’d like to play ball or something, and Lil interjects “Careful, his horn might pop the ball.” Tommy insists that they all play with the star ball they were playing with earlier as it’s Chuckie’s favorite; Tommy rolls it over to Chuckie, but Chuckie (too depressed to feel excited) doesn’t pay much attention to the ball and only lets it bounce off his legs and over to Phil. Phil comments “Good one Chuckie!”; but a depressed Chuckie tells everyone that he doesn’t want to play anymore and plops down on the ground. Lil asks why and Chuckie says it’s because “when you know you’re about to become a ‘Rhinocerot’ [Rhinoceros mispronounced], playing with the ball just seems so… empty.” Chuckie goes on emotionally “You know, before I got ‘Rhinocerousis’, I never really noticed how blue the sky is, or how nice the flowers smell, or how good a brand new crayon tastes right out of the box”; he then tells the others he needs to be alone to think for a while and promptly walks away depressed.

Tommy says to the others that they need to help Chuckie; but not understanding what Chuckie really needs to feel better, Tommy has Phil and Lil follow him to get Angelica. We cut over to Angelica, who’s playing doctor with her doll Cynthia (she’s taken her bandaged doll apart and is snapping it back together); the babies arrive and Tommy asks Angelica is there’s anything she can do to help Chuckie, but a distraught Angelica replies “I wanted to help, I tried to help, but Chuckie wasn’t interested in hearing what I had to say. After all, I’m just a doctor, what do I know?” Tommy insists that she help says ‘please’; Angleica then agrees to help, but says she needs a hospital first - she spots Spike’s doghouse and feels it’s perfect. Angelica has Tommy go get Chuckie, and she assigns Phil to be her receptionist (which she mispronounces as “receptionary”) - Phil asks what a “receptionary” is, and Angelica explains “you make sure people don’t bother me; and before you let anybody in to see me, you gotta ask ‘How will you be paying you bill? Got that?’” Lil than asks what she gets to do, and Angelica assigns her to be her nurse and explains that she gets to help examine Chuckie. Angelica then digs though her doctor’s bag to get a few things - as she digs its contents out, we see that it’s filled with more kinds of toys than just pretend doctor’s instruments - and she says to Lil that she needs a box of cookies, about 100 Band-Aids®, some water and a helicopter. Lil asks where she’s supposed to get a box of cookies, and Angelica replies “That’s okay, sometimes Binks McGill doesn’t have everything he needs either; just keep your eyes open.” Lil holds both her eyes wide open by encircling them with the sides both her thumbs and index fingers, and she comments to herself “Boy, this is easier than I thought.”

Tommy then walks back with Chuckie in tow and they stop in front of Angelica, Phil and Lil; Phil (after a physical reminder from Angelica) asks Chuckie how he’ll be paying his bill, Chuckie replies “Uh, my bill?” and Angelica interjects “That’s all right, I think we can work something out.” She then tells Chuckie that they first need to run some tests, and Chuckie rebuttals “Tests? What kind of tests?” We then cut to a little later on and see Tommy pacing the ground outside the doghouse where Angelica and Lil are “examining” Chuckie; we cut to a view inside the doghouse where Chuckie is laying on his back and Angelica is shining a flashlight onto Chuckie’s face - Angelica however asks Lil instead of Chuckie is she can see it; Lil of course replies no and Angelica feels this is a bad sign. Tommy then comes over a peeks inside, and Angelica tells him “Hey! No visitors in the ‘examinating’ room!”; Tommy dashes away and Angelica and Lil continue. Angelica then asks Chuckie how many fingers she’s holding up, and Chuckie replies that he doesn’t know as he doesn’t know how to count; Angleica replies and she and Lil shake their heads “Neither do Rhinoceroses”. We briefly cut back outside where both Tommy and Phil are pacing the ground, and we then cut back inside where Angelica is “listening” to Chuckie’s insides with her toy stethoscope - she comments that it doesn’t sound good. We briefly cut back outside where we see that Spike has joined Tommy and Phil in pacing the ground; cutting back inside, we see Angelica produce the toy reflex hammer from earlier and Chuckie asks her what she’s gonna do with it - Angleica replies that she’s gonna test Chuckie’s “reflections”. She taps Chuckie’s left leg with the hammer and asks if it hurts, Chuckie replies “No”; she then taps it again and asks him again if it hurts, Chuckie again replies “No”. Then, Angelica plays a pulls a cruel joke on Chuckie by hitting his leg as hard as she can; Chuckie appropriately responds “OW! That hurts!”, and Angelica adds in “Of course it hurts, you’ve got a big bump on your leg.”

Cutting back outside again, Phil says to Tommy that he wishes there was something they could do for Chuckie; Tommy then recalls that, a long time ago, his mother was sick and his father brought her flowers and that made her feel better. Phil agrees that Chuckie will also feel better if they bring him flowers, and they proceed to get some. Meanwhile, back inside the kitchen, Didi is nervously watching at the table as Drew continues to help her and Stu; Drew is puzzled by the fact that his brother apparently kept shopping lists, candy wrappers, and a bag of moldy french fries (presumably among more of such odds and ends) as records, and Stu explains its so that he keeps track of everything he buys. A grieved Drew then tells his brother (starting with a sarcastic calmness before barking in a grieved and frustrated tone): “Oh, that’s nice; why didn’t you just KEEP THE SALES RECEIPTS!!?” We then shift focus back on the kids as Didi pours herself a cup of coffee; as Phil and Tommy pick flowers from the yard, Phil comments that Tommy’s idea is great and that the flowers will definitely make Chuckie feel better. Back inside the doghouse, Angelica draws on an Etch-A-Sketch she’s put on Chuckie’s torso to take an “x-ray” of his insides; Angelica holds up the Etch-A-Sketch and shows Chuckie his “insides" (of course, all she’s really draws is random scribbles). Chuckie comments “Ew!”, and Angleica adds in “Ew indeed!”; she then says “they have no choice” and puts a handkerchief over her mouth like a surgical mask and produces a toy saw and a toy corkscrew. A nervous Chuckie frantically asks what she’s gonna do, and Angelica tells him that they need to “operate”, and that she’s gonna start by “unscrewing” Chuckie’s head! Chuckie is immediately frightened and he runs away as fast as he can!

Just then, as Angelica and Lil walk outside, Tommy and Phil come over with their arms full of flowers for Chuckie, and they ask where he is. Angelica replies: “I hate to be the one to tell you this, but… We lost him.” Tommy rebuttals “You lost him!?” Lil adds in “Yeah, sorry Tommy”, and Angelica goes on “You know how it is: One minute he’s talking to ya’ and.. ‘Poof!’, he’s gone.”; Lil goes on “Maybe he’s in a better place”. Tommy replies “He can’t be gone!”; just then however, they all hear a noise coming from the bushes and Lil tells then all to listen. Phil walks over and asks if it’s Chuckie, and Angelica adds in “Careful, a rhinoceros is known to charge at random”; Tommy points out that he doesn’t feel Chuckie would do that, and Angelica rebuttals “Chuckie wouldn’t, but a rhinoceros would love to - they ‘specially like chasing babies.” The bushes then rattle violently and the babies scream in fright; but it turns out to only be spike, who jumps out and licks Tommy. We pan over behind the bush and we find that Chuckie is indeed hiding there as well; he says to himself that he’s not coming out as he likes his head. Tommy then asks everyone what they’re all gonna do as he feels Chuckie probably turned into a rhinoceros by now, and Angelica starts to giggle (finding it humorous that her made up story has gone this far); Phil suggests Chuckie could live in a zoo, but Tommy points out that Chuckie doesn’t like zoos. Lil suggests he join a circus, but Tommy points out that Chuckie is scarred of clowns; Phil then suggests Chuckie move to the jungle, and Tommy feel this might work.

Unable to contain herself any longer, Angelica laughs out loud and the babies ask her what’s so funny. Angelica replies “You babies are so dumb; you don’t really think Chuckie has a Rhinoceritis, do you?” Tommy replies that they do as Angelica said so; and Angelica confesses that she did infect make the whole thing up, claiming it was just for “practice” - adding that “all doctors gotta practice you know.” An cross Tommy then scolds Angelica for picking on Chuckie, pointing out how easily scarred he is; and he orders her to tell Chuckie he won’t turn into a rhinoceros. Angeilca tells Tommy to “keep [his] diaper on” and that she’ll tell him if she can find him; just then however, they all hear a strange noise coming form the bushes. Chuckie then emerges from the bushes, down on all fours and trying to eat the grass; the rest of the babies are happy to see him, and Phil asks him what he’s doing. Chuckie explains that he was trying to eat some grass, figuring that he should start now is he has to be a rhinoceros; he spits it out and points out that he figures that one needs to get used to it. Tommy says to Chuckie that Angelica has something to say and Chuckie asks what; Angelica explains that there isn’t such thing as Rhinoceritis and that she made the whole thing up. Chuckie however doesn’t believe them at first, feeling that they’re only saying it to make him feel better; Tommy assures Chuckie that it’s true, but Chuckie goes on to say that it’s ok and that he doesn’t mind becoming a rhinoceros and that he’s just rather not get his head unscrewed.

Angelica assures Chuckie that they’re all telling the truth, and Chuckie then asks “Then what about mine being grumpy?” Tommy points out that some people are always grumpy and points out how grumpy Angelica can be (she also gives an intimidating visual aid). Chuckie then asks about the skin on his arm that he pointed out earlier and also asks about his head, pointing out a red bump on his forehead where he feels a horn a growing in; Angelica points out some red on her face and explained it’s only from sunburn, and she also points out 2 scabs she has on her knees (pulling up her pants to show them). Just then however, Phil and Lil point out to Angelica that her scabs don’t look like Chuckie’s scab; a nervous Angelica asks what’s wrong with them, and Phil points out that they both look gray and Lil points out that they look hairy - Angelica jumps in shock. Tommy then points out a spot on Angelica’s head, and Angelica points out that she bumped it last night and that it’s nothing; but Phil and Lil chant “It’s a horn! It’s a horn!” Angelica gulps nervously and Chuckie says to her: “Angleica, you’re the one with ‘Rhinoplasty’ [meaning to say Rhinoceritis]!” Angelica, a in panic, examines her blemish closely with a pocket mirror, and she say to herself in denial: “It can’t be! It just can’t be!” While of course there’s nothing wrong with Angelica either, her newfound panic and anxiety serve her right for what she did to Chuckie.

Back in the kitchen, Drew is just finishing up and is adding the figures together on the adding machine; Stu, who’s not showing any worry about the money he owes asks, “Okay, a few dollars at the end of the year; how bad could it be?” Drew says Stu owes $320.00 in taxes; Stu, unprovoked in the least, rebuttals with a fake chuckle. Just then however, Drew double-checks and corrects himself as he had the decimal wrong, and that Stu really owes $32,000.00! Stu is shocked - “$32,000.00!!!?” - and Drew sarcastically tells him not to worry as “a smart kid like Tommy doesn’t need to go to college.” An upset Stu collapses on the table and begins to sob, wine and pull his hair; he’s just learned the hard way what happens when you’re not financially organized and don’t keep adequate financial records. Drew then walks outside to collect his daughter and head back home; the 4 babies are once again excitingly playing with the ball, but Angelica - feeling she’s come down with her made up disease - is down on all fours and munching on a tuft of grass. Drew asks her why she’s eating grass, and Angelica replies “Careful daddy, the rhinoceros is known to charge at random” and then goes back to munching as the episode fades out and ends.

Trivia

  • The ends credits contain a unique track with accompanying animal sound effects including an aggressive grunt from a large animal (presumably, a rhinoceros); and, in a very rare pre-season-4 occurrence, the animal sound effects briefly play as the Nickelodeon logo with accompanying copyright disclaimer appear at the very end of the program.
  • There are several instances when all the Rugrats mispronouce "Rhinoceritis" and in one such instance Chuckie says "Rhinoplasty" which is the proper medical term for any type of nose job. "Itis" is also the root word meaning inflammation so this would loosely translate to Inflammation Of The Rhinoceros.
  • When Angelica says that Drew is threatened by working women, she might have been copying Charlotte, who sometimes comments on sexism in the workplace.