In Harmony / The Evil Manta

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Flounder mistakes Triton for Ariel.
Flounder mistakes Triton for Ariel.

They promise not to get into any mischief.
They promise not to get into any mischief.

Ariel's good intentions.
Ariel's good intentions.

The Manta works his evil charms.
The Manta works his evil charms.

The Atlanticans are destroyed from within.
The Atlanticans are turned against each other.

According to this episode, Flounder's real name is Guppy Number 35.

Ariel and Flounder first met when Ariel was between 8 to 10 years old.

Ariel watches in horror as the Manta tries to re-educate Flounder.
Ariel watches as the Manta tries to re-educate Flounder.

Best friends forever.
Best friends forever.

How they first met.
How they first met.

In harmony!
In harmony!

The Manta overlooks Atlantica
The Manta overlooks Atlantica.

This episode features the song "In Harmony".

This episode was released on video with Charmed.

This is probably my favourite episode of the series, dealing with the simple things of friendship and harmony in the diversity of the underwater realm. Also, it introduces us to the Manta, whom is my favourite original villain of the animated series.

The episode starts with Ariel and Flounder seeing off Triton, Sebastian and Urchin as they leave to watch a turtle race elsewhere. Left to their own devices, Ariel immediately drags Flounder to explore a dormant volcano outside Atlantica. There, they suddenly hear a voice, small and helpless, asking for help from inside the volcano. Though Flounder thinks it's a bad idea, Ariel lets it out, only to find that the small creature was in fact a giant Manta, who thanks her with a wicked chuckle before heading for Atlantica.

There, the Manta uses his charms and hypnotic powers to turn the Atlanticans against each other. He exerts his strong influence on them one by one, teaching them to stick to their own kind, and soon enough the Atlanticans are forming exclusive "cliques" and refusing to mix around with anyone else. Fights, verbal and physical, break out all over Atlantica over the most petty of things.

Ariel and Flounder try to trap the Manta in a net, but he's too powerful and escapes easily. So they decide to use a different approach, and try to reason with the angry Atlanticans, and to help threm remember how wonderful their lives had all been when they were openly sharing their world. In particular Ariel tells them to believe in their hearts, and not to just blindly listen to what any outsider says about each other.

Quotable quotes

Flounder:So what do you want to do now? ( Later. ) I knew it! I knew it would be something scary!
Flounder:Don't you know, haven't you heard? The story, the horrible creature that the ancient merpeople locked in a mountain?
Ariel:Oh, you mean that story that says if the monster gets out all of Atlantica will be doomed?
Flounder:Uh, I don't know. I always plug my ears before my mom finishes telling it.
Ariel:Oh, Flounder, that's just a silly story grown-ups tell to scare little fishes.
Flounder:Well, it works.
Evil Manta:Foolish children!
Ariel:Deep down, Atlanticans really love each other. All they need is someone to remind them.
Flounder:If they love each other, I'm a barracuda.
Flounder:( Speaking to Ariel. ) You were my friend before I even knew what a friend was.
Swordfish:You're right, Ariel.
Octopus:We were happier when we were friends.
Ariel:You can still be friends.
Octopus:But the Manta said--
Ariel:The Manta can say whatever he wants. You don't have to listen.
Evil Manta:I hate singing! I hate it! I hate love, and friendship, and do I ever hate that little mermaid!

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