The episode opens with Gumball and Penny talking via Elmore Plus, discussing if they would still date each other if they had gross conditions. Penny then asks for Gumball's help in resolving a personal family issue and asks him to come over to her house, which he agrees to.
That night, Gumball brings a cake with him to Penny's house, but nobody answers the door. He then overhears the Fitzgeralds undergoing an argument. Gumball decides to enter their house from the back door, leading him to climbing over the fence. On the other side he finds active sprinklers, so he strips down to his underwear to pass them. Gumball spots several lawn gnomes, and realizes he has entered the neighbor's yard. The neighbor turns on their back lights, and Gumball frantically throws the cake and his clothes into the Fitzgeralds' backyard. Unfortunately, his clothes are shredded by Patrick's wood chipper, and his underwear snags on the fence and gets launched away, leaving him completely naked. He attempts to cross the yard to get some towels hanging on the clothesline, but the lights turn on and all of Penny's family sees him, much to their surprise.
Gumball, now wearing a Santa outfit, joins the family at the table. Patrick reveals that he is unhappy with Penny deciding to stay out of her shell. Penny quickly says that her shell caused her nothing but grief, evidenced by students making fun of her for it. Patrick argues that seeing his daughter naked all the time is embarrassing, but Penny says that most of the citizens of Elmore already wear little to no clothing. Judith calmly tries to tell Penny that her decision is going against their family's older traditions, but Penny believes said traditions are outdated.
Patrick then tells a story where a peanut girl like Penny came out of her shell and died eighty years later since her shell did not protect her from a common cold. Penny tells a story where a father bird was so backwards that he forced his family into staying in their eggs for the rest of their lives and they died from boredom. Gumball thinks the environment is too intense and that the family needs outside help, but instead they decide to force Gumball into deciding whether they should remain in their shells or abandon them.
While Gumball ponders his choice, he gets threatening vibes from each family member. Patrick uses his axe to create a flute with a distressing melody, Judith makes a cookie of Gumball's body getting torn in half, and Penny gives him a thumbs up emoji in a text only to say it was the closest to making a hand with missing fingers. Polly eases some of the tension by showing Gumball her drawing of a crocoduck.
At the table, the family intensely awaits Gumball's choice. Gumball claims he has made a decision but decides to illustrate it with a story. In a faraway kingdom in medieval times, a king became so afraid of the outside world that he shut the castle doors and made every citizen wear a suit of armor. One day the princess discarded the armor and got into an argument with her father, so they invited a handsome prince to make the decision. The prince decides to tell them a story of a family of cocoons on a tree branch. One of them broke open and became a beautiful butterfly much to the family's dismay, so they invited a handsome ladybug to settle the dispute, but the ladybug tells them a story of a family of seeds planted in the ground. One of the seeds decided to grow out of the soil into a flower and the family disapproved, so they invited a handsome gardener who begins to tell yet another story.
Penny is exasperated of hearing the same story and tells Gumball that he cannot expect people to change after telling them the same thing over and over. Patrick agrees and finds that repeating the same stories just makes them angrier. The family realizes that what Gumball is doing is what they have been doing to each other. They peacefully decide to agree to disagree on their stances. Before the Fitzgeralds can compliment Gumball on his "strategy," they find he has already run out of the house in fear.
[Episode begins with Gumball at his computer talking to Penny through via webcam]
Gumball: [Chuckles] Okay, next one, would you still love me if I had an amazing six-pack, but each ab had an udder?
Penny: Mmm, yep. But what kind of swimsuit would you wear at the beach?
Gumball: Oh you know, just my usual trunks. And three bikini tops.
Penny: How about you? Would you still love me, if every time we kissed, I shouted... MAMA LOVES HER RAVIOLI!
Gumball: I'd say "What a coincidence! That's what I always say under my breath after we kiss." Okay, what if I had a medical condition that meant I produced ten thousand times more sweat than the average person?
Penny: I'd say you float my boat! A little too literally.
Gumball: What if I had a soul patch?
Penny: Oof... tough one.
Gumball: [Inhales deeply] On my tush!
Penny: I'd say that's where it belongs. Soul patches are obscene. Okay, what'd be the deal breaker with me? Mm, what if I started wearing a dumb ponytail on the side like this? [Shape-shifts a pony tail on the left side of her head while making a derpy face]
Gumball: Eh, not so bad.
Penny: What about this? [Shape-shifts a ponytail at the top of her head instead, making a derpy face]
Gumball: Eh, still manageable.
Penny: How about now? [A ponytail is seen covering part of her face, she makes a derpy face]
Gumball: Oh, I can already see us driving away, you at the wheel, cans rattling behind the car, under the "just married" sign, as we disappear into the sunset... over the edge of a cliff.
Penny: [Laughs, then looks nervous as she speaks] What if I asked you to come to mine and help me resolve a sensitive issue with my parents?
Gumball: I would say I agree. The time has come for an intervention regarding your dad's addiction to socks and sandals.
Penny: Ha-ha. It's a little more serious than that.
Gumball: Ah don't worry. Leave your parents to me. I'll just use my TOOT technique.
Penny: Your what now?
Gumball: It's an acronym for the four steps needed to resolve any argument.
Penny: Oh, we'll just stick with the acronym. [Scratches head] So, what are you doing tonight?
An Awkward Entry
[Gumball reaches the Fitzgerald's house while holding a cake and whistling. He dances to the front door. Suddenly he hears noises inside and rings the doorbell]
Gumball: Penny! [No answer] Uh... hello?
[Gumball presses his ear against the door. Shouting is heard, and the sound of glass breaking can also be heard. He tries opening the door but it is locked. He sighs and heads for the backyard]
Gumball: [Shouting to the nearest window] I'll just go around the back and let myself in, okay?! [The shouting continues] Okay.
[He climbs over a fence while still holding the cake. As he reaches the top, he sees sprinklers at the other side and groans. Scene cuts to Gumball wearing only underwear while holding his clothes and the cake walking past the sprinklers]
Gumball: Wait a minute.
[Gumball notices several garden gnomes and a sign reading "WELCOME TO GNOME TOWN!"]
Gumball: Wrong backyard!
Woman: [Light turns on from the neighboring house] Who's there?
Gumball: Ohhhh no!
[Gumball tosses the cake and his clothes over the fence leading to the Fitzgerald's backyard and then starts climbing over it. He screams as he sees his clothes get destroyed by Patrick's wood chipper]
Gumball: Man, my clothes! What the- AH! [Falls forwards, his underwear getting caught on the fence before getting launched into the distance] Aah! Oh no!
[Gumball looks at the Fitzgerald's house. Penny is having an argument with her parents while Polly looks at them nervously. Gumball then spots some towels at the other side of the backyard. He gulps and tries to sneak past the backyard while holding the grass-filled cake]
Patrick: [Voice muffled through the glass door] We've been in our shell for three hundred years! Do I think that's our perspective? You think we're all wrong and you're right? You're just a kid!
[Gumball accidentally triggers a light which shines right at him in the middle of the backyard. The Fitzgeralds stop arguing and stare]
Gumball: [Inhales deeply] Patrick. Judith. Good evening.
[They continue to stare in surprise. Judith covers Polly's eyes]
Gumball: [Holds up grass-filled cake] I... brought dessert. [Smiles awkwardly]
To Shell or Not to Shell
[Gumball, now wearing a Santa outfit, is seen with the Fitzgeralds at the table]
Gumball: So, uh, [Laughs nervously] thanks for the clothes, Patrick.
Patrick: Sorry, that's all we had. As you can see, most of us only wear shells, as we have done for generations since the dawn of time!
Penny: But some of us are happy being their true selves and don't feel the need to follow this family's backward rules! I mean, do you realize what it was like to wear that at school?! All the kids used to call me "peanut butt-head!"
Gumball: [Gasps] That is ridiculous!
Penny: I know. Thank you.
[Shot cuts to a photo of shelled Penny with a blank expression on the wall]
Gumball: It was more like someone carved a blank emoji face into a dried spud. [Chuckles]
[Penny shape-shifts into her gorgon form and hisses at Gumball]
Patrick: That's not the point! Do you realize what it's like for us to see you walking around basically naked?!
Penny: In my defense, [Points to Phillip outside] that bear is just wearing a T-shirt, [To Anton] the piece of toast is only wearing shoes and gloves, [And then to Tina] and that dinosaur is wearing nothing at all. Let's be honest, it's pretty hard to know where the line is in terms of public decency in this town.
Patrick: Your mother knows! Can't you see how distraught she is?
[Camera zooms in on Judith's expressionless face]
Gumball: She looks fine to me.
Patrick: It all happens on the inside, Gumball.
[Patrick grabs a bucket from under the table, and puts it in front of Judith. Judith holds it, bends her head downwards, and water starts pouring from the eye-holes of her shell. Gumball stares]
Penny: Pfft, if you think that's weird, imagine what it's like going to the bathroom.
[Gumball does. A thought bubble appears above him, showing Judith in front of their toilet. She then does a handstand on top of it]
Penny: [Quickly pops the bubble] Yeah, or maybe don't.
Judith: Penny, your shell is part of your heritage; it comes from your ancestors.
Penny: [Smugly] If we follow that logic, the ancestors before those ancestors were primates, and yet I've never seen you guys eating each other's lice.
Patrick: Oh, you think this is funny? Then let me tell you a story [Sinisterly] Once upon a time, there was a young peanut girl who came out of her shell in a dangerous, modern world.
Gumball: [Whispers] And what happened?
Patrick: [Slams his hands on the table]SHE DIED!
[Everyone but Patrick and Polly gasps]
Patrick: Eighty years later.
Gumball: Eh, could have been worse.
Patrick: OF A COMMON COLD, BECAUSE SHE [Slams his fist on the table] WASN'T WEARING HER SHELL!
Penny: Oh, please, I'll tell you a story. Once upon a time, there was a bird who was so backwards, that when his computer had a virus, he poured chicken soup into the DVD tray. He was so backwards that he still watched movies on VHS, in rewind! He was so backwards that when his tablet asked if he wanted to update, he chiseled the word "no" into it!
Patrick: Ha! I like that bird. Sounds like me.
Penny: Well, that bird forced his whole family to stay in their eggs and you know what happened? [Slams her hands on table]THEY DIED!
[Everyone but Penny and Polly gasps]
Penny: Of boredom, for the rest of their lives.
Patrick: Oh, yeah. I think I get the moral of your story.
Penny: Exactly, he should have let go of tradition and just let them be themselves.
Patrick: No, should have made them wear two shells.
Penny: [Growls angrily and her head begins to pulse grotesquely. She then sighs] Don't you get it? That bird is you and you're oppressing this family.
Patrick: I am not oppressing anyone!
Penny: You're oppressing me!
Patrick: I am not oppressing you! I'm just exercising my authority to force you to do something you don't want to do!
Penny: That's the exact [Shape-shifts into a dragon and now has a demonic voice]definition of oppression!
Polly: I have a story.
[Penny returns to her original form]
Polly: Once upon a time, there was a little peanut who found a magical hat, which was also a puppy who could play the flute the end.
[Short pause; everyone stares at her]
Penny: I am not going back in my shell!
Patrick: And we are not getting out of ours!
Penny: [To Gumball] Come on, back me up.
Gumball: I don't know... The atmosphere is getting kind of icy, wouldn't you say?
[Cuts to the other Fitzgeralds. The entire area is cold, they are all covered in icicles, and the water Judith is pouring in her cup is frozen. Gumball uses an ice scraper to remove ice from his eyes]
Gumball: This argument is just not my cup of tea. Mainly because I don't like my tea laced with face-melting poison. [To the other Fitzgeralds] Uh, I-I think maybe you guys need outside help.
Patrick: [Stands up] I agree. Gumball, you decide. Shell or no shell?
Gumball: [Nervous] Uh, I meant, more like professional help.
Penny: You mean like a counselor?
Gumball: Yeah, or like a cage-fighting referee or something.
Patrick: Nonsense, I trust you'll make the right decision. For the good of everyone. [Sinisterly] Including you.
[Gumball suddenly deflates onto the floor]
Penny: Gumball, what are you doing?
Gumball: [Strained] Feeling the weight of this decision.
The Fitzgeralds Threaten Gumball
[Gumball is shown sitting outside the glass door, nervously trying to think. He sighs shortly after. Suddenly grinding can be heard. Patrick is in the tool shed sharpening his axe while casting a threatening look at Gumball. Gumball gasps. Patrick is then shown using the axe to cut a piece of log, with the same face. Gumball gasps again. Patrick is then shown making part of the log into a flute, with the same face. Gumball is confused. Patrick then plays the Funeral March on it]
Gumball: Maybe you should have stopped at the axe.
Patrick: Yeah, I got a bit carried away and lost the plot a little.
Gumball: [Cheerfully] It's okay. I got the message.
Patrick: [Walks out of the shed towards Gumball, with a sinister voice] Good. [Walks into the house]
[Gumball sighs. Judith then comes out wearing an apron and holding a tray]
Judith: Oh, try not to worry too much. Just follow your heart and say what you want to say. I know you will make the right decision.
Gumball: Oh, thank you Mrs. Fitzgerald.
Judith: [Lowers the tray to Gumball] Here, have a cookie. It'll help clear your mind.
Gumball: Ah, thank- WHAT THE WHAT?!
[The cookie is revealed to be a dead Gumball cut into half, with pinkish icing spread around it]
Gumball: Wh-What happened?!
Judith: [Speaking in a sinister tone and a creepy face] Oh, just a little accident in the kitchen.
Gumball: [Takes a piece] O-kay. [Eats it nervously]
Judith: Good boy. Bye now. [Turns around slowly and walks away]
Gumball: [Smiles nervously, then turns back and starts panicking] Oh, no no no!
[Gumball stands up and walks around while mumbling. Suddenly, his phone chimes]
Gumball: Huh? Ah! Message from Penny. "I know you'll say the right thing." Aw, then she added a little thumbs-up emoji to cheer me on. [The phone chimes again] "That was the closest I could find to a hand with missing fingers. Just to clarify, it was a threat."
[Gumball holds his hand sideways while doing a thumbs-up and looks. He becomes nervous]
[Gumball hears blinds shuffling. Polly is seen at the second floor window. She holds up a piece of paper with a green duck-like creature with a crocodile mouth and one leg. Gumball squints his eyes]
Gumball: Uh... What is that?
Polly: [Cheerfully] A crocoduck.
Gumball: A... Uh... Okay, cool. [Walks back in]
Once Upon a Time...
[Back at the dining table, Patrick and Penny are looking at Gumball menacingly, Judith is creepily grinning, and Polly is smiling]
Gumball: [Stares at all of them nervously, then exhales deeply] I have made my decision, and to illustrate my point, I'm going to tell you a story.
[Suddenly, clouds flow across the screen and the animation changes to low poly]
Gumball: [Voice-over] Once upon a time, a long, long time ago, in a castle far, far away lived a king, who was irrationally scared of the world outside.
[The king rides on his horse across a hill when a colorful worm walks by]
Worm: [Voiced by Gumball with a goofy voice] Hi, do you know where I can get my parking ticket validated?
[The king and his horse scream and trash around, running back into the castle afterwards]
Gumball: [Voice-over] So he decided to close the doors of their castle.
[The castle door closes]
Gumball: [Voice-over] Forever.
Worm: Uh, it's cool man. I just realized that actually we're in medieval times and there's so such things as cars.
[People inside the castle scream and the screen zooms out to show the entire castle trashing around]
Gumball: [Voice-over] But closing the doors was not enough. The king made everyone wear a suit of armor. It was impractical.
[A sunbathing person melts inside their armor]
Gumball: [Voice-over] But they got used to it.
[And another person breaks the diving board and falls into the pool]
Gumball: [Voice-over] Apart from one person. The Princess, who one day, came out of her armor, and she was beautiful.
[The low poly Penny turns around with several warts shown on her face]
Low Poly Penny: Ah!
Penny: [Off-screen] I think the Princess could look a bit better than that.
Gumball: [Off-screen] Right. Sorry.
[Penny's face switches through several weird designs]
Gumball: [Off-screen] Oh, s-sorry that's not what I was trying to do.
Penny: [Off-screen] Come on, I look as if I could lick my own forehead!
Gumball: [Off-screen] Uh, sorry. Let me just, um...
Penny: [Off-screen] Okay, okay, whatever. Just get on with the story please!
[It stops at a weird cloudy head design that keeps on changing shapes. This continues throughout the rest of this story]
Gumball: [Voice-over] The king was upset she ditched her armor, but the Princess wanted everyone else to ditch theirs, too, and be themselves. So she invited an impossibly handsome prince to solve the problem.
[An extremely handsome prince with blue skin representing Gumball comes through the door]
Low Poly Penny: [Gumball voices her with a lisp] Oh, prince that I love, please help us reach a decision!
Gumball: [Voice-over] But the king warned him-
King: [Also voiced by Gumball] May this decision be right, or I will take your hand and it won't be in marriage!
Gumball: [Voice-over] And the Princess replied...
Low Poly Penny: Mwarfurludrup!
Gumball: [Voice-over] Which was either a threat or an angry burp and neither was good news. So the Prince gave his answer... in the form of a story.
[Clouds flow across the screen again and now a forest is shown]
Gumball: [Voice-over] Once upon a time, there was a family of cocoons living happily on a tree branch. Then one day, one of the cocoons broke open, and from within emerged... a beautiful butterfly!
Butterfly Penny: [Gumball voices her with a weird accent] Come out of your cocoons, guys, and be gorgeous too!
Gumball: [Voice-over] The cocoon family was fuming, you could see it on their faces.
[Camera cuts to the faceless cocoons; A long pause]
Gumball: [Voice-over] The situation was tense, so they called a handsome ladybug boy to help them resolve the problem. And you know what the ladybug said?
Ladybug Boy: [British robotic voice] Once upon a time...
[The Fitzgeralds groan off-screen as the clouds cover the screen again. Now the underground of a field is shown]
Ladybug Boy: [Voice-over] There was a family of seeds who lived deep underground. They loved it.
Purple Seed: There's no air!
Penny Seed: Or light!
Pink Seed: Or sound!
All Seeds: We love it!
Ladybug Boy: [Voice-over] But one day, one of the seeds decided to grow, and she became a beautiful flower. The other seeds didn't like it, so they called a handsome gardener to solve the problem.
[A large pair of blue feet appears behind Flower Penny]
Ladybug Boy: [Voice-over] Hey, I said handsome!
[Each toe on the right foot becomes a handsome blue head]
Ladybug Boy: [Voice-over] Uh, anyway, you know what the gardener said?
Blue heads: [High-pitched british robotic voices]Once upon a time-!
[The shot suddenly cuts back to reality]
Penny: [Sighs] Oh, Gumball, you can't just keep saying the same thing over and over and expect people to change their minds. Trust me, I've tried that with my parents enough times to [Sticks out her tongue, which has abs on it] grow new muscles on my tongue.
Patrick: Exactly. Repeating the same point to someone who disagrees with you doesn't change their mind, IT JUST MAKES THEM ANGRIER! Your inane stories are doing exactly what we're do- [Short pause] What we're...
Penny: What we're doing to each other.
Judith: Maybe we just need to agree to disagree.
Patrick: Yeah. It's like riding a three-legged horse. It won't be a smooth ride, and it will definitely hurt your butt, but at least it still goes somewhere.
[The three hug each other. Polly smiles]
Penny: Wow. That was really smart, Gumball. Using those stories to show us how-
[The Fitzgeralds look and see Gumball run out of the house and jump over the fence. The episode ends]