Earlier this week, a Vine started going around showing what was supposedly a very NSFW scene from Hey Arnold! in which a couple seen through a window behind Helga and Arnold appear to be, as one Twitter user put it, “eatin ass” in a very vigorous fashion. Once you know that’s what people think is happening, it really is quite hard to unsee it.
And yet, unsurprisingly, that’s totally not what’s going on in the scene, according to Hey Arnold! creator Craig Bartlett. In an e-mail exchange with The A.V. Club, Bartlett said he became aware of the scandalous clip earlier this week. Though he says he’s seen the Thanksgiving episode that the clip comes from “a hundred times,” he admits he’d “never noticed the weird tangent of the two characters,” saying he was “probably watching Arnold and Helga.”
Most importantly, there’s nothing sexual or nefarious going on in the clip, at least according to Bartlett. “The scene is from ‘Arnold’s Thanksgiving,’” Barlett says, “and the kids are leaving Mr. Simmons’ apartment, where his family is arguing at the table. That’s Uncle Chuck eating a turkey with his hands. I assure you it was never intended to be what the guy tweeted it was.” That’s it. Case closed. Despite what your dirty mind may have seen, there’s not sexual imagery buried in every children’s cartoon.
Bartlett is currently hard at work on the forthcoming Hey Arnold! movie, which is set in the jungle and due out sometime in the semi-near future.