Episode name reference to/pun on: The words "television" and "trauma".
February 22, 2002 (produced in 2001)
John McIntyre Chris Savino
Tele-Trauma is the third part of the fifth episode of the third season in Dexter's Laboratory that aired on February 22, 2002. In this episode, Dexter invents a helmet that will prevent him from missing his shows. However, he later has television-based outbursts, which caused him to lose the debate.
Since his studying is interrupting his favorite TV shows, Dexter creates a helmet to absorb the shows directly. However, the plan backfires when he randomly snaps into television-based outrages.
Dexter keeps on missing his favorite shows because of his studying, so he invents a helmet that will help him with that. However, problems arise when Dexter starts quoting off lines from his favorite TV shows.
Mr. Luzinsky: That's enough! I declare Herman the winner and Dexter go the principal's office.
Principal: Well, Dexter, your behavior in that auditorium was totally appalling, outrageous, shocking and horrifying. So just what on earth have you got to say for yourself young man?
Dexter: Well, sir. You see... All I can say is... This concludes our broadcast day, good night.
The episode name is a portmanteau of the words "television" and "trauma."
Dexter suffers from echolalia in this episode. He is also shown to exhibit common traits of Aspergers Syndrome.
Dexter made a bunch of references to various real-life TV shows and movies, while under he was absorbing all of the information from television and quoting it.
Dexter makes a Seinfeld reference when he starts doing some stand-up, starting with "What's the deal with ..." This is a common focuser, used by Jerry Seinfeld to open up his stand-up routines.
Dexter retells the events of a Jeopardy! episode, where he talks about a stupid contestant using up all of his lifelines, before he can even make $100. However, lifelines are only used by contestants in Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, not Jeopardy!.
Dexter shares a bit of Bewitched trivia, saying that there were two Darrins, both named Dick. This is a reference to the character, Darrin Stephens being played by Dick York for the first five seasons of the show before his actor was replaced by Dick Sargent for the rest of the season.
Dexter references to Looney Tunes and explains "Fat Elmer Fudd" to the other kids. This is a reference to Fat Elmer Fudd. A temporary redesign of the character of Elmer Fudd, which depicted him as being much bigger and fatter. As Dexter says, he only appeared in four cartoons before being changed back to his normal appearance.
Dexter references to The Brady Bunch, when he said "Marcia, Marcia, Marcia". This was a quote by Jan Brady, from the episode "In Her Sister's Shadow".
Dexter saying "Cheeseburger, Cheeseburger, Cheeseburger" may have been a reference to a Saturday Night Live sketch, called "The Olympia Restaurant".
There was a reference to The Powerpuff Girls in this episode. One of the quotes Dexter got from the TV was "Townsville's in trouble!"
There was another Seinfeld reference in this episode. When Phillips Luzinsky came up to Dexter, Dexter said "Newman".
Dexter references Wheel of Fortune when he says "I think I'm ready to buy a vowel, now."
Dexter also references Jeporady! again when he says "Alex, I'll take tv talk for $500."
Dexter references to Seinfeld once again when he does another stand-up joke during the debate.
Dexter telling Mr. Luzinsky "Sit on it, Fonz!" is a reference to Happy Days.
These episodes completed production on July 20, 2001.
This segment was the last to feature Christine Cavanaugh as the voice of Dexter; she retired from voice acting soon after, only to pass away from an undocumented illness in 2014. Her replacement for the rest of the series, Candi Milo, had already voiced Dexter in the previously-aired segments, "Poppa Wheely", "The Mock Side of the Moon", and "If Memory Serves". This most likely means that "Tele-Trauma" was produced before these other segments were, despite airing afterwards.