Phoebe Breaks a Leg is an episode in the Hey Arnold! TV Series.
At P.S. 118, Phoebe is sharpening pencils for Helga, but Helga says they are too dull and need more sharpening, despite being incredibly sharp (Phoebe then stabs her finger touching one). In the cafeteria, Helga makes Phoebe get her lunch for her while she reads magazines. At home time, Helga then makes Phoebe carry all her overdue books, as well as Phoebe's own books, back to the library. Phoebe asks her to hold the bus, but Helga doesn't even bother. It then starts to rain, and Phoebe miserably returns her book to the library (she already returned Helga's books) and walks home.
At home, Phoebe is asleep in bed, and has a nightmare where she is held prisoner by Helga (and is almost blinded by a bright light, which was really lightning coming from outside) and forced to do many chores for her as she is a Queen, bearing a lot of resemblance to Queen Elizabeth I, the daughter of Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII. She asks Helga to do a favor for her but Helga refuses, and then laughs wickedly. Phoebe then wakes up, startled, and hears her mobile phone/cell phone ringing. She then answers it, and discovers it is Helga, who is lying lazily in bed, telling her to pick up her dry cleaning and get her a dozen doughnuts. Phoebe then miserably agrees to do so.
Phoebe then is seen walking to school, carrying all of Helga's stuff, and talking about whether her dream had any meaning to her real relationship with Helga, or whether it was just a crazy fantasy. While talking and carrying Helga's supplies, she walks onto the road, unable to see where she is going. Arnold and Gerald walk past her almost oblivious to the situation, with Phoebe not hearing the sound of a horn. Arnold and Gerald then notice her, and Arnold tells her to look out and get off the road, as a bus is coming. However, by the time Phoebe notices, it is too late and after a brief scream, the bus knocks her down, injuring her and knocking her unconscious.
Helga walks down the road, wanting to know what was happening. She spots an ambulance, with her friends surrounding it, but thinks it's just Principal Wartz having a minor mishap. She then discovers her dry cleaning and doughnuts all over the road, and finds Phoebe's shattered glasses. Helga is now horrified that her best friend was knocked down by a bus. She hears Stinky, Gerald and Arnold talking about the accident, and how she got injured while doing too many errands for Helga. Phoebe is then taken to hospital. Helga is now so upset by her actions that she decides to go to the hospital to make amends to Phoebe, but not without eating a doughnut off the footpath.
Helga then arrives at the hospital, and finds a man covered in bandages. Thinking it's Phoebe, she apologizes to him for causing her to get injured doing errands for her, while he remains very confused. Phoebe then comes in in a wheelchair and Helga is surprised that she is OK, and just has a fractured leg. Helga is delighted, but also guilty that she caused Phoebe to get hurt, despite Phoebe telling her it was only an accident. Helga then tells Phoebe she will be incredibly nice to her and treat her like a Queen until her leg heels completely. Phoebe then returns to school and Helga is incredibly nice to her, re-arranging her desk neatly for her by sneaking into the school at night, making her a massive lunch (with many courses) and allowing her to sit with her on the left side front seat on the school bus, reserving it just for her and Phoebe. Phoebe soon starts to enjoy the attention she is getting.
Phoebe then goes to the hospital, and asks the doctor how long she will have to wear the cast for. But the doctor tells her that her leg is completely healed and she is going to get her cast off. Phoebe is shocked that she's healed, and the doctor tells her she was very lucky to only get a broken leg. Phoebe is not happy about having to return to her 'normal life' - before she was knocked down and when Helga was always very mean towards her - and she hears previously mentioned things said by Helga in her head. She asks the doctor if she can keep her cast as a souvenir, which he presumably agrees to.
At home, Phoebe puts on an eye mask and welds hinges on her cast, then puts her foot into the cast, hoping Helga will notice, very cheekily. At school, Phoebe then is seen in her wheelchair, and opens her classroom door to find Arnold, who asks her how things are. She tells them things are good, but she has to keep her cast on for a few more weeks. Helga then appears and trips over carrying many books. She then tells Phoebe she will be nice to her throughout the day. At lunchtime, Helga makes her another massive lunch, with Phoebe asking her to change the pudding. After lunch, Helga nicely reorganizes her locker, putting all her books neatly in, with Helga doing everything Phoebe says. On the bus, Phoebe asks Helga if she can sit in the 'reserved seat' and if Helga could sit next to Brainy, which she agrees to despite reluctance. Arnold, Gerald and Stinky are suspicious of Helga's actions to Phoebe, and of Helga sitting next to Brainy. At the library, Helga is reading and Phoebe is writing, and Phoebe pretends to scratch her 'itchy' leg. She asks Helga if she can do some exercise, and rides off around the library, with Helga more suspicious. She then sneakily takes her cast off to pretend to scratch her leg, but Arnold notices her doing it, and asks her what she is doing. She tells him she was doing nothing, but Arnold tells her her cast isn't real, as he saw her take it off and put it back on again, which she disagrees with. Arnold tells her why she is faking a broken leg, and she tells him it's a free country and she is allowed to fake an injury. Arnold agrees with her, but still doesn't understand why she'd want to do so. He tells her if it has something to do with Helga, but she argues with him that Helga isn't the reason why she faked an injury, and he tells her that faking an injury won't solve anything, but she goes away telling him she agrees with what he says but argues that her guilty conscience will give her a taste of her own medicine. Arnold is more shocked than ever.
In the class, Phoebe asks Helga for a pillow adjustment, which Arnold sees her doing, but continues writing as Helga gets out of her seat to tell her what she really wants. At lunch, Helga tells her she was up all night thinking of her nutritional needs, and gives her avocado rolls, right after throwing a tray of food at a student, which Lila and Sheena see her do. Phoebe enjoys the attention Helga gives her, but tells her she is not hungry. Phoebe then gets her hair washed in the water fountain by Helga, but Phoebe decides not to have her hair washed and leaves. Phoebe, now ashamed, decides that she's gone too far and decides she has to accept reality and can't fake her injury for ever. Helga then gives her her books and runs across the road to phone a cab to take her to the Swedish Massage Therapist. Helga then drops some coins into the sewer and decides to retrieve them. Phoebe decides that Arnold was right about her faking her injury to get attention from Helga. Helga is then seen retrieving coins from the sewer, but Phoebe spots a large truck coming down the road, about to hit her, and Phoebe then takes her cast off and runs across the road to save Helga. Phoebe then saves Helga just in time and they fall onto the footpath. Helga notices her leg is heeled and tells Phoebe to call an ambulance. At the hospital, Helga then ends up in a wheelchair with a fractured leg and Phoebe tells the truth to Helga that she faked her injury just to get attention, and apologizes to her. Helga tells Phoebe she felt she was being made to do too much for her and not enough for Phoebe, and decides that they will both do things for each other. The episode then ends with them going up in the hospital lift together.
- The doctor saying it was quite miraculous that Phoebe only got a broken leg, which is correct, as many people have died or been very severely injured from getting hit by buses.
- Nocturnal Ned's dayjob seems to be a doctor and more importantly, Phoebe's doctor. He also seems to shave after his medical duties or before his radio show.
- This episode shows that Phoebe walks around barefoot in her shoes (without wearing socks).
- The hospital is named Drymon Medical Center, after director Derek Drymon.
- Phoebe is seen using a blowtorch despite being only 9 years old. She shouldn't be anywhere near a blowtorch. If she used one in real life, she could potentially be killed or severely burned.
- Why didn't Mr. Simmons notice Helga and Phoebe were out of their seats?
- In real life, Phoebe would have been killed or severely injured.
- When Phoebe opens her cast to scratch her leg, Arnold states "I just saw you take it off and put it back on", however Phoebe is still sat in her wheel chair with the cast open and never put it back on until later in the conversation.
- It is very unlikely that Phoebe would be at the hospital on her own without her parents.
- This was the second time a character mistook another character in a full body cast, the first being Sid in "Sid's revenge" thinking a man in a full body cast was Principal Wartz.