| Esther... The Girl|
Who Became Queen
September 20, 2000
Esther... The Girl Who Became Queen is the 14th episode of VeggieTales.
It is based on the story of Esther from the Old Testament, with elements from The Godfather and Casablanca.
The story opens at 3:00 A.M. at a palace in Persia where Haman, King Xerxes' (Mr. Nezzer) right-hand-man (Mr. Lunt), is throwing Queen Vashti out for insubordination (as she refused to make Xerxes a sandwich at the hour). A search is then initiated to find a new Queen.
The following day, Esther and her cousin Mordecai (Pa Grape) are talking. Esther is asking for Mordecai's advice, but his advice reveals that Esther knows what to do but that she lacks the courage to do it. He tells her that she should not be afraid to do what is right: to confront her friend who stole an apple. When Haman drives up in a favorite car-wagon to collect the eligible maidens, he spots Mordecai and orders him to bow in his presence, but Mordecai refuses as he bows down to no one except God and Xerxes. Haman then spots Esther and has her taken to the place with the other maidens (though the relationship between Mordecai and Esther is kept secret).
At the palace, Xerxes and Haman audition the maidens to be the new Queen. When Esther takes the stage and sings, Xerxes is left in awe and the decision is made. However, Esther does not wish to be the Queen, but regardless she is crowned and ensconced in her new life against her will. One day in the throne room of the Perisan palace, Xerxes is visited by Bigthan Peaoni, one of the two Peaoni brothers (Jean-Claude Pea), who has brought him a large cake. Unannounced visitors are not permitted, but Xerxes allows him to be heard. Peaoni convinces him to come look closely at the cake, while Peaoni's brother Teresh Peaoni (Phillipe Pea) hangs onto a rope, the other end of which supports a grand piano from 1750 A.D. suspended above the cake. Mordecai, who is hiding in a corner to avoid Haman, observes the plot and informs Esther. Esther warns Xerxes in time and Teresh and the piano crash harmlessly onto the cake. Xerxes thanks her for saving his life, but she indicates Mordecai, saying that the credit should be his.
Haman banishes the Peaoni Brothers to the Island of Perpetual Tickling for their crimes of attempting to crush Xerxes and for entering the throne room uninvited. Though Xerxes believes he is safe, Haman convinces him that a greater threat awaits. There is a family that cannot be trusted, he claims, and pose an imminent danger to Xerxes. Unaware that Haman is talking about Mordecai, Xerxes unwittingly authorizes an edict to have him and his family banished to the Island of Perpetual Tickling. Mordecai finds the edict posted among other posters and visits Esther on her balcony at the palace. He appeals to his cousin to reveal Haman's evil plans to Xerxes, but Esther is afraid as she lacks the courage to confront Xerxes and struggles with what to do.
While Mordecai reminds her that she need not fear to do what's right, action does not come easy for Esther. Twice, she attempts to inform Xerxes, and both times she fails, lamely inviting Xerxes and Haman to dinner instead. Meanwhile, Haman attempts to get Mordecai to bow to him again and threatens to have his banishment carried out immediately when he refuses. His attempt is foiled when Xerxes declares his plan to throw a parade in Mordecai's honor for saving his life, utterly humiliating Haman. On her third attempt, Esther is finally able to muster up the courage to face Xerxes. She reveals that Mordecai is her cousin and that Haman has been plotting to destroy him and his family, which includes her. Xerxes, who respects Mordecai and loves Esther, believes her and banishes Haman to the Island of Perpetual Tickling. Mordecai ends up filling Haman's former position as Xerxes' right-hand-man as Esther, having saved her people, gazes out the side of the palace with a smile.
- Scallion One
- Mr. Nezzer
- Percy Pea
- Miss Achmetha
- Grim Tickler
- Bob (picture cameo)
- Junior Asparagus (picture cameo)
- Laura Carrot (picture cameo)
- Larry-Boy (picture cameo)
- "Hey... Aren’t you the Peaoni brothers? The most wanted peas in Persia?"
- "That’s right we are!"
- "And we could have taken over the kingdom, if it wasn’t for that meddling Queen!"
- The Peanoi Bros exploiting their plan to Haman.
- On the poster for public transportation, it states "Why wait 'till A.D.?". This is because the story of Esther takes place before Jesus' birth, which happened at the beginning of the A.D. era.
- A gnat is a type of insect.
- An edict is a order or decree by a person in authority.
- The episode was originally planned to be released for Spring 2001. However, it got finished early.
- This was the first episode for several things:
- The first episode since Where's God When I'm S-Scared? where someone that's not from the cast narrates the story.
- This is the first non-holiday or Larry-Boy episode not to have the countertop or a Silly Song. Mike states that they originally planned a countertop, but it was going to make the runtime almost an hour (Keep in mind, this was before the company was about to move to Franklin).
- The first episode Percy is seen without Junior or any of the other kid veggie characters.
- The first time Pa Grape smiles since his debut episode.
- The first episode where Larry appears without a major role as well as he barely speaks. This would happen again in The Little Drummer Boy.
- The first episode Tim Hodge worked on.
- The first non-holiday episode that features no bible verse.
- In some airings of this episode on Smile of a Child, some scenes were removed, including who the youngest Jackson is. This is possibly due to time.
- There were a few differences between pre-production and the final version:
- The narrator was going to be in a South Chicago accent. This was later changed to a New York-esqe accent.
- Archibald was the host instead of Scallion 1. It might be possible his model wasn't rebuilt until the next episode.
- When Mike was planning out which story to do next, it was this or Ruth, and they went with Esther. They would eventually do an adaption on Ruth later.
- Haman holding the cards was storyboarded by Luis Contreras. Mike originally didn't want Haman to hold the cards in the scene, but they decided to keep it in.
- Before Esther tells Xerxes what Haman did, you'll notice the pizza box hides the front of him. Mike states this was done because he was intersecting with the sofa while sitting, so in reality, Xerxes is actually standing.
- The episode was made out of VeggieTales fans demanding an episode that's all about a girl.
- Andy Arnett, Tom Bancroft, Tom Danen, Robert Ellis, Thom Falter, Joe Gorski, Joe McFadden, Nathan Tungseth and Marc Vulcano had a nightmare of Joseph Sapulich's daughter being a vegetable.
- On the DVD and Netflix versions, the audio is only in mono. If you compare this with the original VHS, there's some sound effects that were missing in the DVD (eg. a rooster crowing in the beginning)
- Vashti is thrown out just because she refused to make Xerxes a sandwich at 3:00 A.M. Unless Haman was enforcing Xerxes' rules, there must be unreasonably strict rules set before the Queen (as they're crowned AND during their term in the palace).
- It'd be very unlikely all the maidens could fit in Haman's wagon at it's size.
- Esther was successfully able to audition for the role of and be crowned as the new Queen, but, aside from one maiden onscreen, where were the other maidens? Had they already auditioned and not been crowned or were they just plain ignored during the audition? Unless there were elimination rounds before the final rounds of the audition, it's hard to believe the host doesn't discriminate against certain maidens.
- The host says "Ladies and gentlemen..." even though only Haman and Xerxes are in the audience. That is, until the room suddenly fills up in just a split-second with unseen characters taking pictures.
- One of Esther's dresses has shoulder pads... however, she doesn't have shoulders.
- The Peaoni Brothers had ample time to set their whole trap up without anyone noticing indicating the palace guards aren't doing their job correctly.
- What does I.P.T. (Infant Potty Training) have to do with banishment to the Island of Perpetual Tickling?
- After Haman is banished to the Island of Perpetual Tickling, Mordecai fills his former position, which is apparently "the No. 2 guy in the whole kingdom," which in turn would make the Queen's spot No. 3. Shouldn't the No. 2 spot go to the Queen (since they both share the rule of Persia, unless that's no longer how royalty works)?
- In the first shot of Persia, the sunglasses on the Pea train phase through their bodies.
- When Mordecai shushes Esther the second time, he gains teeth. However, he doesn't have any when he shushes her the first and third times.
- There's some buzzing in the textures.
- Towards the end of The Battle Is Not Ours, when Esther is gazing at the sunrise, she appears to phase into the edge of the palace.
- In the overshot of the palace entrance during the sunrise/sunset, you can see black on the left.
- One shots shows a wall render too late.
- Reginald, the camel from Jonah: A VeggieTales Movie can be seen as a picture on the flyer on the bulletin board.
- A flyer for King George and the Ducky, as well as an ad for the Stuff-Mart can be seen on the bulletin board.
- Mordecai's "Have I ever steered you wrong?" may be a reference to Cleo's catchphrase from Clifford the Big Red Dog, which came out the same time as this episode.
- Phillipe's line is a quote used from the Scooby-Doo series, where the gang would capture the bad guy and revealed his/her plan was and would state " And I've would gotten away with it if wasn't for you meddling kids!"
- The Jacksons Haman and Xerxes are refering to while they're playing is a family of singers, including Michael, Tito, and Janet.