Synopsis for
"The Little Mermaid" Urchin (1992)

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In this episode we are introduced to Urchin, a brand new character that will become part of the series' central cast. This episode showcases a different view on friendship, and how even something as simple as the desire to have a friend can be harmful. To be true, pick your friends wisely.

Lobster Mobster and Da Shrimp are a pair of undersea crooks who are out to "take over" something before an even more notorious crook named Crab Louie arrives in Atlantica. They encounter Urchin, an orphan merboy who pretends to be independent and tough as nails, but actually craves friendship. Lobster Mobster pretends to offer friendship in the guise of joining his "gang", which Urchin eagerly accepts. First task as part of the gang is to steal some food. When Urchin hears that the Neptune Ball is underway at the royal palace, he sabotages the dance and makes off with a sack of food during the commotion. However, his actions are witnessed by none other than Triton, Ariel and Flounder.

When Urchin swims away, Ariel and Flounder chase after him. Ariel, curious and not at all angry, confronts Urchin about the stolen food. Ariel offers a hand of friendship to Urchin that is different from that offered by Lobster Mobster, but Urchin is reluctant to take it. Even so, Ariel has never been one to give up easily, so she tries again... Only to be captured by Lobster Mobster, who wants to use her as a hostage to get Triton's treasure.

From here, Urchin surprises even Ariel when he shows his true colours: he's actually a nice kid, and a clever one, at that. Thinking on the flick of his tail, he comes up with a plan to save Ariel, and then later to remove Crab Louie, impressing even Triton himself.

All in all, it's an excellent introduction to a lovable character who's flawed in places but has a heart of gold something he shares in common with Ariel herself.
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