Author has written 21 stories for Hey Arnold.
Disclaimer: I do not own Hey Arnold! or its characters... just like everyone else on this site. Hey Arnold! is the property of Nickelodeon and Viacom Inc.
Hey there, football heads. Let me prattle on about myself and my uninteresting story with the series Hey Arnold!
I'm what you'd call a born-again fan of HA! I was a kid about Arnold's age when the show first debuted way back in 1996, and the show definitely had a presence in my life, but at the time I didn't recognize it as a major one. It wasn't until the release of The Jungle Movie that I subsequently rediscovered the series and realized how impactful the show had been all along without my realizing it.
One fateful day, I got some old Sesame Street song stuck in my head, so naturally I looked it up on the youtubes. When it ended, one of the suggestions to pop up next was the claymation short Arnold Uses His Imagination, and I remembered HA! partially got its start on Sesame Street. I hadn't given HA! much thought since it went off the air years earlier, but after watched the old short, suddenly all these suggestions for reviews of something called "Hey Arnold! The Jungle Movie" appeared. What's that? I wondered...
Curiosity is a dangerous thing.
And thus my memory was jogged, and suddenly my mind transported me back to childhood, watching "The Journal" from my grandmother's kitchen. As I said, HA! was only a passing interest of mine as a kid, and despite the cliffhanger ending I didn't give it much thought at the time, and then forgot about it altogether. I've since learned that Nickelodeon just quietly let the series die with no fanfare, so I had no idea that was the ending. Now curious to see how a few plot threads from the show would finally resolve (mostly, will Helga finally get her man?), I rewatched "The Journal" and then I at last watched the apparently long awaited Jungle Movie.
I thought it was pretty good. And then I was ready to move on with life.
No such luck. I found the movie satisfying but not worth dwelling on... but my brain didn't. In fact, I just couldn't get it out of my head. This led to me rewatching the entire series, and then watching the movie again and I just kept appreciating it more and more. Suffice to say, I sadly missed out on the entire HA! renaissance and short lived revival. It's all right. I've since become a walking textbook of HA! knowledge and I'm doing my penitence by living in a post HA! renaissance where interest in the series seems to be diminishing after TJM... a lonely feeling as bittersweet as the average episode of the friggin show...
I was perfectly satisfied with TJM serving as the finale to the series, and actually didn't want a sixth season at first. As I rewatched the entire series however, I realized that the show had kind of lost a lot of momentum by season 5 and got stuck in the status quo. TJM however has left the series with at least three huge changes to the status quo that open up the world to new and interesting stories. The kids are now at the top of the school food chain as sixth graders, Arnold's long lost parents have returned, and of course Helga and Arnold are at last an item. Considering that the entire series had more or less been building to Helga and Arnold confronting their feelings for one another, TJM does more or less feel like the end, but the end of the movie did cleverly hint at future developments. Arnold has his parents again, but everything they've been through has left them a little damaged and slightly kooky, all the pressures of growing up will be hitting the kids hard as they reach the verge of adolescence, and Arnold's relationship with Helga is going to be anything but easy.
These developments were all significant enough to spark my imagination, and after jotting down a few ideas of my own I wondered if anyone else had written HA! fanfics...
Oh. Why, yes they have. Kind of a lot.
I read a lot of wonderfully moving stories depicting life after TJM for the kids, which helped me to cope with the growing reality that... Hey Arnold! most likely is never coming back again. TJM was the miraculous final hurrah, and now it is over. I was really hopeful for a time, with Craig Bartlett fighting for a sixth season, an active fan petition nearing its goal, and some buzz on social media signs were looking good, but slowly it became sadly clear that Nickelodeon lost interest in a revival after TJM didn't get the ratings they'd hoped for. I now have this weird meta feeling that mirrors Arnold's thoughts about his parents; I hold out hope but ultimately realize I'm not going to get what I want... of course, that's not how it worked out for Arnold, so... never lose hope!
For a time I was content with reading other peoples' work and had no intention of ever finishing/sharing my own, but slowly the number of fanfics being released started to diminish, and that combined with the show sadly not getting a continuation, I will admit I got just a little depressed... then finally I decided that's not what Arnold would do.
Since the odds of Nickelodeon actually going forward with a continuation of Hey Arnold! are slim to none (never lose hope!), I decided screw it, I'll write my own sixth season. Of the ones I've published so far, I am very grateful to have gotten a warm response from readers, and I've made a few friends on this site as a result... which almost feels more gratifying than getting an actual new season. I've come up with several episodes already, but I am open to suggestions and encourage readers to send ideas of their own. I've already been sent several good ones that I've incorporated into some of these stories. I'm a believer in the collaborative process, so if you're dying for a sixth season and have ideas feel free to share.
I mean it. If you like what I've written, and have ideas you'd like to see come to life in a sixth season, send em my way and I'll take a stab at em.
ACTUALLY... (here are my thoughts a year later) writing is hard. I've got a lot of ideas for premises, but not so much for the stories themselves, so if you're reading one of my unused story ideas and decide YOU want to try writing it... message me. I'm a believer in collaboration so if one of these ideas speaks to you... write the story. Make it part of this imagined season 6 universe.
Below are the episodes I've thought up, all in chronological order if you need the reference. Only a few have been finished however, and have not been released in order. Most of these are still works in progress.
Episodes marked with * are not yet written, or in progress. Many of them are mere thoughts at the moment, so if you see a premise you find intriguing don't be shy about shooting me your ideas and I may steal- I mean, adapt them into my stories. Eheheheh...
HEY ARNOLD! SEASON 6
Happily Never After - The first episode establishes the new status quo following TJM. Arnold reflects on how much his world has changed since the summer, and is feeling strangely unhappy with how things aren’t living up to what he expected. The kids are facing the pressures of growing up, Arnold’s parents are proving to be clingy, weird and kooky, and his relationship with Helga is confusing and rocky at best. He and Gerald lament that everything is changing, and try to find a way to preserve what they had.
Retirement - With his son back to run the boarding house, Grandpa looks into finally retiring.
*Rhonda’s Vlog - Rhonda struggles with her increasing narcissism.
*Miles on the Job - Stella has taken on a few part time jobs, and now Miles tries to enter the working world and is completely hopeless at anything conventional. He ends up working at Big Bob’s Beepers at one point.
*Relationship Coaching - Coach Wittenberg and Tish get wind of Arnold and Helga's relationship, and the two of them thrust their unwarranted and unwanted advice on the unfortunate kids on how to build a happy healthy relationship. Annoyance and malapropism ensue as the two boneheaded adults threaten to ruin an already confusing relationship.
*Spleen of the Sea - Gerald recounts another urban legend, this time of the shipwreck of the HMS Ginormous that sank off the coast of Hillwood. One survivor was purported to have made it to elk island carrying a valuable jewel necklace called the Spleen of the Sea, and disappeared in the caves below. Driven by a desire to get her hands on it to get rich and save the family business, Helga convinces a few kids to go treasure hunting.
Hypno Helga Ago-go - Phoebe and Gerald become tired of Helga’s abuse, and devise a plan to hypnotize her into only being her nicer self. The hypnotism causes Helga to revert back to her three year old mind before she became the class bully. Helga as a result is a complete innocent, shy and sweet but can barely function in the sixth grade, and has lost all feelings for Arnold. After realizing how much they depended on Helga’s brasher side they desperately try to restore her back to normal.
*101 Piglets - Abner makes a lady friend and the next thing you know…
*Rockabilly Buddies - Stinky and Sid start a rockabilly band. Because that’s a fan art thing that Craig Bartlett really likes and has expressed interest into making that part of an actual season 6. Honestly I have no idea what to do with that premise but there it is...
Training of the Shrew - Previously called "Pataki Puberty." Now there’s a title that would never fly in the actual series… but I think it’s funny. The subject matter is probably right out too... but then again, there was that "Kids Next Door" episode that dealt with this pretty overtly so... Helga is struggling with one or two little changes and seeks out some big sisterly advice. Things go about as well as she expected they would (not terribly well).
*Fighting Fathers - Arnold once again runs afoul of Rex Smithe Higgins, and a multi generational feud between all three Rex Smythe Higginses and Phil, Miles and Arnold ensues. Now I just need some sort of amusing and creative venue for them fight... (Credit to EnvytheSkunk)
* Lower Deckers - Sheena, Nadine, Peapod, Park and other oft neglected characters (from the audience perspective) get their own story. What's that story? I dunno... maybe foreshadowing THE MITIGATORS.
*Hey, Arlene! - For reasons I haven’t yet decided, Arnold is forced to go incognito as a girl and Helga simultaneously disguises herself as a boy and… something out of a Shakespearean comedy happens. I still can't think of an exact premise in which they'd have to disguise themselves, I just know Curly and Lila will be smitten with the new boy and girl... tee hee.
*Fate of Phoebe - Phoebe feels insurmountable pressure to overachieve on a level she is beginning to act like almost like Olga, all because she sees only one path in life that she is meant for. Unsure of how to get through to her, Helga consults Arnold for help. Debates over fate, destiny, etc ensue.
*Bad Times Roll - Harold is approaching the age of sixteen and eager to get his drivers license, making him the only kid in grade school able to drive. (Credit to EnvytheSkunk)
Couples Only - Tired of her rebuking him in public, Arnold tells Helga off. She ends up seeking out Brainy’s advice on love. (Craig Bartlett wanted to do an episode exploring Brainy’s character but… I kind of prefer him as an enigma. This will give us just a little insight into his character without ruining his mystique)
*Date Night - With their secret finally out in the open, Helga and Arnold plan for their first actual date. Both of them mentally torture themselves over trying to make it a perfect romantic evening, so of course it'll all be one awkward disappointment after another, ending in disaster. Will their relationship survive? (Doi)
*Pigeon Man is Dead - I'll probably change the title... (it's a reference to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead), but I have a really neat idea for an episode with Pigeon Man that serves as a meta commentary on the internet rumors about his supposed suicide. Rumors circulate about Pigeon Man's death within the actual HA! universe, and Arnold can't convince anyone he's alive, leading to a very existential story delving into how information on the internet assumed to be true can take on a life of its own, even after being proven objectively false... or maybe this is getting in a little too deep... I'll work on it...
*Gerald and Phoebe - I realize I've been neglecting these two since Helga tends to eclipse everything in HA!, so I thought... why don't I have a kind of meta commentary on how Phoebe and Gerald feel kind of pushed to the wayside. Helga expresses her frustration over just how easy and natural Phoebe's relationship with Gerald is, and encourages her in some way to treat him more like she treats Arnold. Great advice, Helga.
*Wedding or Not - Arnold's parents have made more than a huge effort to bond with their son, but they are going perhaps just a little too far. Arnold always had his grandparents around when he needed them, but also now feels his parents are suffocating him just a bit, and he feels he's losing the independence he long enjoyed as a kid. Their attempts to spoil him silly eventually push him to a breaking point... meanwhile, Arnold and Helga are experiencing trouble with their relationship, and Arnold is further frustrated that his parents have such an easy relationship that they can't offer much advice. It all builds to Miles and Stella renewing their vows to begin anew, and Arnold analyzing his own feelings to see if he really does return Helga's feelings. (Credit HA!FanForever)
*Miriam Under the Table - Miriam’s drinking finally leads to some serious trouble.
Arnold Actually Visits Arnie For Real This Time - Stella insists on visiting her family in the country, including her nephew the infamous Arnie. What could possibly go wrong?
*Curly Finds a Gun - Just kidding. Not going THAT dark.
*Red Produce - Mr. Green is close to retiring and is considering selling his butcher shop. Harold and Arnold band together to try to reunite him with his estranged vegan son. (Credit to EnvytheSkunk)
*Short Man Syndrome - Feeling a growing need to compensate for his perceived lack of masculinity, Eugene starts exhibiting more self destructive behavior to the dismay of Sheena (short man syndrome is more or less what we now mostly refer to as "toxic masculinity," but how could I not call it "short man syndrome" in this particular universe?).
*Don Qui-Pooké- Grandma Gertie goes a little crazy(er than usual) and sets off on a quest to right all wrongs in Hillwood. With her faithful squire at her side they embark on a great misadventure.
*Le Nozze di Arnoldo - Helga fantasizes about her wedding in the form of an opera. Not sure how that's going to work in the written form... but I just have this great moment in mind of someone admonishing Big Bob singing to the tune of the finale of Don Giovanni only it's "Bob Pataaaaaaaaaaki..."
*Ronnie Ruined - In just two years, Ronnie Matthews' music and career have gone the way of the dinosaurs, only he isn't as fondly remembered. In fact it seems basically no one remembers the former "voice of a generation." With his career in ruins and having recklessly spent all his wealth, Ronnie finally goes to Phoebe and Helga, desperate for some kind of validation and attention, and later after hearing about how Arnold helped remake Dino Spumoni's career, he goes to the football headed humanitarian for help. Having to face the fact that he never had any musical talent, he might have to find a new passion in life.
*The Atonement of Iggy - It's been two years since Iggy's spitefulness drove Arnold to commit an act of humiliating himself before hundreds of jeering spectators. In that time Arnold still hasn't said a word to him in spite of his efforts to redeem himself. With his reputation in tatters, the boy at last goes to extremes to earn Arnold's forgiveness.
*Ruth's Day Out - This is a really dumb idea... it would only be good for an ironic laugh. We spend a day following Ruth, Arnold's former crush as she just has an average day, goes about her mundane life, does nothing of importance, and learns nothing. You know, cuz there's just nothing to her. Or who knows, maybe I'll have her realize way too long after the fact, "Wait... did that Arnold kid have a thing for me?"
*Monkey Feathers - Pigeon Man returns to Hillwood and teams up with Monkey Man as a sort of superhero duo. Curly is bent on becoming their ward, but even those weirdos are weirded out by him. Spurned by the heroes, Curly is determined to play the villain... uh oh.
Misses Sawyer - Lila learns through the grapevine about everyone’s summer adventures in the jungle and feels somewhat left out of the loop. Moreover, the return of Arnold’s long lost parents triggers some unhappy feelings she has buried about her own mother. Feeling confused and isolated, she suddenly finds herself strangely drawn to Arnold again now that he is with Helga. Uh oh, not this again.
Susie Come Home - Susie returns to the boarding house just to tie up loose ends with Oskar, but Oskar begs Arnold to help him win her back. As Helga observes, there may be far more unhealthy and unforgivable relationships than that of hers and her family.
*Legends of the Corazon - Gerald and Helga retell stories from San Lorenzo, with varying degrees of accuracy and a lot of artistic license taken.
*Bully and the Beast - After unexpectedly seeing a more mature and friendly side to Wolfgang previously, Arnold and Helga seek him out. Helga receives some insight into what a truly unforgivable parental figure is.
Miriam and Stella - Stella has taken Helga under her wing, and Helga is looking into getting emancipated from her family. Stella cares greatly for Helga, but also takes it upon herself to get through to Miriam, save her from herself, and get her to step up and be the mother Helga needs.
Revenge of the Shadow - Arnold is haunted by nightmares of never finding his parents and worse of being hunted by Lasombra. Helga suggests he see the school shrink, and Dr. Bliss tries to help him make sense of his recurring dreams.
The Beeper Princess - Arnold and Helga band together to help her family save their failing business by finding a new market for beepers.
The Big Pataki - The Patakis are visited by Grandpa Pataki, whom Helga hasn't seen since she was very young and has virtually no memory of. To her surprise, unlike Bob he appears to be a jovial and very soulful man who seems genuinely interested in her as a person. At first this makes her happy, but she slowly starts to notice that the way he forgets Bob's name and treats him is eerily familiar...
*Dark Arnold Rises - On the cusp of adolescence, Arnold finds his voice is beginning to change, and everyone starts giving him a hard time because his new voice sounds eerily similar to Wolfgang's. Annoyed by everyone, he starts to develop an occasionally dark and mischievous streak. Helga worries she’s corrupting him, and simultaneously finds herself acting more like Arnold usually does, balancing the equation.
*Guy Trouble - Olga meets another man and enters into a relationship with him. Helga is naturally wary, given her sister's previous poor taste and judgement when it comes to men. Similarly to both Doug and Che, the new boyfriend appears impossibly nice and charming, leading the suspicious Helga to the immediate conclusion that he's no good. Fearing for her sister's well-being, Helga tries to sabotage Olga's relationship, but may just discover that her instincts were a little hasty this time... uh oh. (Credit to sonicfighter21354)
*Curly on the Couch - Curly becomes very lazy and spends all his time on the couch. Nah, just kidding, maybe he'll get some much needed therapy. Makes sense. As the school shrink Dr. Bliss has to have more patients than Helga.
* Brace Yourself - Helga is already feeling annoyed that her parents are now paying a little TOO much attention to her. Things get worse when they decide she needs braces to fix her massive overbite. Because there aren't enough Helga stories... damn it, I swear I love the other Hey Arnold! characters too but... man does she cast a shadow... how ironic that she feels she lives in her sister's shadow... wasn't this an episode description when I started? Anyway, it turns into a story of Helga starting to really sympathize with how messed up Olga is from getting too much parental attention and pressure, or something.
Second Biennial Parents Day - Arnold is feeling super confident that his team will win the annual Parents Day Weekend competition. Things turn out considerably different.
The Mitigators - It's the first Monday of June, and some students are unhappy that Arnold's class passed on the traditional Trash Can Day last year. A merciless team of sixth graders seek to being back the tradition, abusing fourth and fifth graders alike in order to restore the social hierarchy the school once adhered to. Arnold and his friends band together into an 'Avengers' style team to end the cycle of violence. (This one is huge... so I'm calling it the next HA! movie in my head canon...)
HEY ARNOLD! SEASON 5.5
TJM picks up at the end of the kids' fifth grade year. I've always theorized that there are a few episodes in the series that are set a year later during their fifth grade year, but that's all just speculation. (I mean some of them would HAVE to be, since they depict holidays happening after events of pervious episodes... Arnold's Thanksgiving, April Fools and especially The Journal clearly take place after Arnold's Christmas and such). Regardless... we may have missed a lot in that time. I have a few little episode ideas for what could have happened between The Journal and TJM, depicting Arnold becoming obsessed with finding as much information on San Lorenzo as he can, trying and failing to get himself there... and becoming anti-social and obsessive about it for a time.
I've had a few requests to go on and write a seventh season as well but... I think if HA! went on with a sixth season I'd like it to just have a nice quiet ending that points to a brighter future... and then 'The Patakis' would happen...
To that end... I've decided in addition to this sixth season project I'm gonna go for it and try to write my own take on 'The Patakis,' AKA Hey Arnold! minus Arnold starring Helga and her wonderfully awful family.
I know there have been plenty other renditions and I've read a few, so I may be late to the party but... I'm gonna go for it. I've already mapped out a three season story arc with basically all the important story beats I want to hit... but no clear idea for any episodes just yet. This project may take a while, but if it sounds intriguing and you'd like to see it happen, lemme know.
ALSO I've started a deviantart account where I'll be posting the occasional fanart for the series. Just search for me by my name here.
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