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Recess Wiki

"The Trial" is the eighteenth episode of the first season of Recess, which was first broadcast on November 8th, 1997.



In a dirt-clod war, Randall accuses Spinelli of throwing a rock at him, which is against the rules. Spinelli profusely denies the allegations, however, she will not tell the truth. King Bob decides to end this in court.

Main Story

The episode opens with a dirt-clod war. T.J., Vince, Gretchen, and Gus are having fun, when suddenly, they hear a scream. This scream belongs to Randall, who has a very large bruise on his head. When Spinelli asks what is going on, Randall accuses her of hitting him with a rock.

The very next day, most of the other kids start to turn on Spinelli, as throwing a rock in a dirt-clod war is one of the worst crimes a kid can commit. After a debate as to what to do to her, the kids decide to give Spinelli a swirly. Suddenly, King Bob stops them, insisting that they give Spinelli a fair trial, then give her the swirly.

During the trial, Gretchen acts as the prosecutor, with Spinelli's other friends as her defenders. T.J. insists that Spinelli tell the truth, but she refuses. Gretchen tells Randall to tell everyone exactly what happened. And Randall gives his viewpoint on the event. In his story, Randall is a one-man army who is Spinelli's moral and physical superior. According to Randall, Spinelli faked a surrender only to throw a large rock at him.

Afterwards, Mikey gives the kids his viewpoint. In his story, the dirt-clod war is particularly brutal, and Spinelli, who is tending to the fallen, calls a time-out, only for Randall to throw a dirt clod at her anyway. (This causes King Bob to treat Randall with disgust.) According to Mikey, he tried to stop Spinelli from doing something she might regret, but by the time he got to the gate, it was too late.

Finally, T.J. eventually talks Spinelli into telling the truth. It is then when Spinelli admits that she was about to cream Randall with a dirt clod, not a rock when she heard a cat meowing. She then saw that the cat was stuck up a tree, so she forgot about Randall and saved the cat. The other kids don't believe Spinelli, so she states that the cat in fact belonged to Miss Finster, who congratulated her.

It turns out that Randall hit himself in the head with a small rock in a fit of jealousy for Miss Finster's approval. When the kids thus realize the truth, they decide to give Randall the swirly instead!


  • Animation/continuity error: At the beginning of the episode, where the rest of the kids are huddling over Randall, T.J. is drawn with a chubbier-looking face and smaller eyes than usual.
  • Animation/consistency error: While King Bob is saying that Spinelli deserves a fair trial, his ears are visible under his crown. Throughout the rest of the episode, his ears are not visible.
  • Animation/timing error: While Gretchen is acting as the prosecutor in front of Randall, her right arm moves too fast. It is possible that some frames were skipped instead.
  • Animation/consistency error: After Gretchen calls Mikey to stand and before he starts to talk, King Bob is seen sitting in front of the slide with knees up and arm on an invisible armrest as if it were his throne.
  • Animation/consistency error: After Spinelli tells her point of view, Gretchen proceeds to question Randall. Following this moment, the artwork style of the animation changes considerably and continues for most consecutive scenes of the remaining of the episode, but it is skipped for some viewpoint flashbacks. The most noticeable change is the drawing outline thickness.



  • The episode is in the style of the film Roshomon, different points of view of the same event.
  • When Digger Dave appears in this episode, he is voiced by Klee Bragger. It could be possible that it was Digger Sam who appeared in the episode (as only one of the diggers appear), however, it was drawn as Dave.


  • This is one of the only episodes where Butch makes a cameo appearance.
  • This is the sixth speaking appearance of King Bob.
  • This is another episode that hints that T.J. has a crush on Spinelli. When he calls her to tell the truth, she is reluctant at first, though when she looks at him, she said, "Aw man T.J., why do I let you talk me into these things?"