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AMX's Thoughts-Teacher of the Year by AMX-269 AMX's Thoughts-Teacher of the Year by AMX-269
I'm going to be blunt here: yes, Danny Phantom was a good show. But just like Butch Hartman's other famous Nicktoon, it wasn't immune to screwing up. "The Fright Before Christmas" has Danny being treated like he's in the wrong for not liking Christmas...because his parents fight every year over whether or not Santa exists. "Beauty Marked" has Danny naming Sam the winner of the beauty pageant...and then she completely dismisses the whole thing as stupid in front of all the other girls who actually wanted to win the pageant. Heck, "Mystery Meat," the very first episode, had a conflict because Sam was trying to be an "individual" by attempting to force her menu choice onto everyone else. And for some crazy reason, all the other students have the nerve to be angry about this!

And then there's this episode. To be fair, this episode isn't an Animated Atrocity. The 95 percent of this episode that doesn't enrage me is okay. The main plot of this episode is that Danny, Tucker, and Sam are fighting Technus inside a computer game. Okay, nothing wrong with that. Heck, Sam is actually tolerable in this episode, and her calling out Danny and Tucker for not wanting her help at first because "girls don't play computer games" is actually justified.

But then there's the B-plot. Because Danny's spent so much time fighting Technus, he ends up failing a test, which puts him into (more) hot water with Mr. Lancer and his parents. And that's where we get that scene. Now, I'm not saying parents shouldn't get concerned when their child's grades start suffering. But it's an entirely different thing for Danny's parents to expect academic perfection simply because "he's a Fenton." In my opinion, that is a big load of horse poo. A last name and a family legacy does not guarantee that you're going to excel in a certain area, I don't care who you are. And trying to put that kind of pressure on a teenager (who is already an emotional mess, never mind that Danny has the added pressure of his parents potentially dissecting him if they found out his secret) is just going to make things worse. You know there's something wrong with the situation when your normally serious bookworm sister thinks your parents are being too strict. I had to deal with these kinds of expectations growing up, and I know for a fact that it didn't help me work harder; it just made me freak out whenever I got a grade lower than an A.

Like I said, I'm not saying parents shouldn't be concerned about their child's grades. But for Danny's parents to demand he pass a retake test "with flying colors" simply because "Fentons get A's" is not only completely unreasonable, but could potentially do more bad than good in the long run.

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January 20, 2016
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