Episode name reference to/pun on: The police term "Book 'em".
August 13, 1997
Greg Miller Genndy Tartakovsky
Book 'Em is the third part of the 5th episode in season 2 of Dexter's Laboratory. Like its sister episodes, it aired on August 13, 1997. The episode features Dexter and Dee Dee trying to return a library book that was illegally checked out.
Dexter is in the public library checking out books for his report. Dee Dee appears behind him talking loudly. At checkout, Dee Dee inadvertently takes a book that Dexter didn't check out, Dexter impatiently orders her to move. At the lab, Dexter sees that the book Dee Dee had was not checked out properly, and he organizes a plan to get the book back in its place.
That night, Dexter and Dee Dee head back to the public library to return the book. Dee Dee lowers Dexter into the library with a rope, but she gets distracted by a butterfly and lets the rope go, causing Dexter to slam into the floor. Meanwhile, Dexter heads toward the check-out counter to find that it's blocked by infrared lasers. Just as Dexter puts the book inside the slot, Dee Dee sticks her head out. Fed up with Dee Dee's antics, Dexter yells out in the library and causes the silent alarm to go off.
Ms. L, the librarian, busts into the library with two thugs behind her and orders them to go after Dexter and Dee Dee. The siblings send the thugs on a wild chase throughout the library. Later, Dee Dee gives up on running and tells Ms. L she quits. Ms. L congratulates Dee Dee for catching Dexter. As punishment, Dexter had to read to several children and Dee Dee at story time.
While Thug 2 looks at Dexter and Dee Dee sneak by while disguised as books, Dee Dee is seen in her everyday clothing. However, in the next scene, she is back in her black bodysuit.
Thug 1 & Thug 2 are a reference to the Dr. Seuss characters Thing 1 & Thing 2 from the popular children's story The Cat in the Hat.
Dee Dee gliding along the library floor with accompanying music is a reference to Steven Spielberg's 1975 film Jaws.
A soundalike of the Mission: Impossible theme music is heard when Dexter grabs his agent gear.
While Dexter falls through a nightmarish landscape, he falls into a book with a cover that reads Dante's Inferno, a poem by 14th-century poet Dante Alighieri.
The scene where the two Thugs chase Dexter and Dee Dee through the library is a reference to the chase sequences from Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!, most notably with the upbeat rock music accompanying the scene, the way Dexter and Dee Dee run off, the card catalog drawer gag, and how Dexter and Dee Dee hide from the Thugs behind newspapers and disguise as books.
While Thug 2 chases Dexter and Dee Dee through the library, the siblings are seen reading newspapers with "Post" and "Times" on the headers, referencing both The Washington Post and The New York Times.
The cover art for the Book 'Em episode credits the series crews' last names on the books starting from left to right: Renzetti, Miller, McCracken, Rote, Tartakovsky, Rudish, Castricone, and Desrochers.