Ben surprises Jen with his pirate costume at the annual Royal Knights Faire in Crystal Cove. Despite his enthusiasm, she points out that pirates don’t fit the theme of a renaissance fair. Ben responds by saying that the renaissance is boring and pirates are more fun. When he steps into an alley to adjust his costume, he is attacked by a Gnome with glowing hands and eyes. Jen comes looking for him and screams as she sees the Gnome acrobatically jump to the top of a nearby building and disappear. Ben’s skin rapidly turns blue as he lays paralyzed with a look of terror frozen on his face.
Later that day, Lord Barry welcomes people to the Royal Knights Faire but antagonizes anyone dressed as a pirate. Gil Littlefoot, court jester and one of the fair’s operators, complains that Barry antagonizes pirates after being told not to. Gil's wife and Queen of the Faire, Amanda Littlefoot, hits him over the head with her scepter and insists that the fair be kept historically accurate. Scooby-Doo and Shaggy walk through the fair dressed as pirates and discuss food. Velma, dressed in her regular attire, tries to go for a walk with Shaggy but he insists that she needs to be in costume, something that she refuses to do. Meanwhile, Fred and Daphne walk through the fair dressed as a knight in shining armor and a fair maiden, respectively. Velma sees someone being placed into an ambulance and alerts the rest of the gang. Jen tells Mayor Jones and Sheriff Stone about the gnome attack, but they are of little help: the mayor hopes to capitalize on the Gnome and the sheriff writes that she is a “nut” in his notebook. When the gang ask what is going on, the sheriff and mayor discourage them from becoming involved.
The gang interview Jen and learn about the attack, but Velma doubts that it is consistent with gnome mythology. Fred asserts that solving the mystery will be up to them, which causes a lovestruck Daphne to compliment him. Velma suggests that they visit her mom’s souvenir booth at the fair to ask her about gnomes. When she tries to get Shaggy to go with her, he and Scooby become more excited about visiting the nearby ice cream moat. At the booth, Velma talks about her frustration with Shaggy and Angie Dinkley jokingly offers to poison him. Angie encourages Velma and suggests that she consider how she can be the cause of relationship difficulties because she tries to be smarter than everyone else. Angie also gives Velma a copy of I'm Okay, You're a Scary Gnome and advises her to be cautious. In the parking lot, two more fair-goers dressed as pirates are attacked and paralyzed by the Gnome.
As the two latest victims are loaded into an ambulance, Gil worries that the attacks will ruin business but Amanda dismisses his concerns. After Fred tries to convince his dad that the Gnome needs to be investigated, the mayor surprises him by agreeing... but he is only interested in learning how to maximize the Gnome's commercial potential. While Fred and his dad talk, Daphne recovers a pink earring from the hand of one of the paralyzed pirates. As the gang compare notes, Velma reveals that the information from her mom offers no comparable scenario involving a gnome. Daphne shows everyone the earring and Fred concludes the owner is likely the person responsible for the attacks. After Shaggy makes a joke using the fake parrot on his pirate costume, Velma expresses her concern that Shaggy and Scooby could end up as the Gnome's targets.
People in pirate costumes continue to be attacked and the hospital becomes unable to take more victims. The gang go to the Mermaid Theatre, where the sheriff and medics are taking additional victims. The gang try to investigate but are momentarily blocked by Sheriff Stone, who decided it was a thoughtful gesture to play a cheesy movie for the paralyzed pirates. After he leaves, Fred, Daphne, and Velma examine the victims and Shaggy and Scooby elect to “guard the concession stand.” While Fred examines a victim, Velma reacts to a scene in the cheesy movie about a man who dumps his girlfriend to spend more time with his dog. Daphne asks her what is wrong and Velma confesses that she and Shaggy have been seeing each other. As she explains her frustration with Shaggy’s behavior, Daphne likens it to what she’s gone through with Fred. When Fred returns, he is told of Velma and Shaggy’s relationship and advises her to avoid unnecessarily complicating things and remember that she has plenty of time to work it out. Fred also reveals their latest clue: a purple glowing liquid. It is implied that Fred has obtained this sample by using a hole saw on one of the victims. In the Mystery Machine, Velma analyzes the liquid and finds it is a jellyfish toxin that causes short-term paralysis. Shaggy points out that the victims will recover not long after the Royal Knights Faire ends.
The gang return to the fair to search for more clues. Shaggy and Scooby witness an argument between Lord Barry and Gil Littlefoot. Barry is furious at Gil’s acceptance of pirates, but Gil points out that he’s in charge because Barry almost financially ruined the fair by barring people in inaccurate costumes. Shaggy and Scooby follow Barry and discover that he is secretly obsessed with pirates and fantasizes about being one. While spying on Barry, the Gnome attacks Shaggy and Scooby and chases them into the woods. Scooby runs ahead to get the gang, but Shaggy accidentally crashes into a tree and the Gnome finds him on the ground, unconscious.
With Shaggy gone, the gang sit at a picnic table to try and plan their next move. Scooby sobs uncontrollably, and Daphne finds that even food won’t console him. Velma sits across from Scooby and holds the fake parrot from Shaggy’s costume, which he found in the woods. Still upset at Velma for her prom date with Shaggy, Scooby unsuccessfully tries to take the parrot from her and it tears in two. As Velma admits that she misses Shaggy, Mr. E calls Fred’s cell phone. Velma demands to know where Shaggy is, but he only offers them a clue: “begin your search at the end.” Velma realizes that they must search where Shaggy was last seen and makes peace with Scooby to get his help.
Scooby identifies where Shaggy was and they begin their search. Daphne accidentally falls through a hidden door in a tree, revealing it to be hollowed out with a ladder inside. Climbing up, the gang discover a series of catwalks in the trees all over the fair grounds and determine that the Gnome has used them to travel around the fair undetected. They dig a pit in the woods and cover it with sod as a way to trap the Gnome. Scooby, still dressed as a pirate, agrees to act as bait. Fred and Velma wait for Daphne, who arrives after running an unspecified errand involving bracelets. The Gnome tries to attack Scooby, but spots Fred, Daphne, and Velma before the trap can be sprung and escapes to the catwalks above. The gang go up the ladder and Fred, Daphne, and Velma chase the Gnome. Scooby finds Shaggy tied up high in a tree and frees him, but a section of catwalks collapses and they fall down into the pit meant for the Gnome. Fred, Daphne, and Velma corner the Gnome on the catwalks and it grabs Daphne by the wrists. Stunned that she doesn’t become paralyzed, it jumps down to the forest floor. Daphne reveals that her errand was for steel bracelets that would block the toxin from reaching her skin. Back on the ground, the Gnome is chased by the gang but it eventually crashes into Lord Barry and falls into the pit.
Fred ties the Gnome up and unmasks it to reveal Gil Littlefoot. Amanda arrives and demands an explanation, hitting him with her scepter. Gil explains that he sought to frame her for the Gnome attacks so he could become solely in charge and get control of her fortune. Velma notes that he is far too tall to be the Gnome, forcing Gil to reveal that he has abnormally short legs and has always used special stilts to appear very tall. He points out that his presumed height gave him the perfect alibi for the Gnome attacks and reveals he planted one of Amanda's earrings on a paralyzed pirate in order to shift blame to her. Amanda gets the last laugh by pointing out that she is actually taller than Gil and hitting him again. Sheriff Stone, tickled by Gil’s true height, repeatedly insults him by calling him “baby legs,” “little footy,” and “shrimpo.” Mayor Jones expresses his frustration over the gang ruining another potential tourist attraction.
With the mystery solved, the gang plan to enjoy the final evening of the fair. Fred, Shaggy, and Scooby become excited by bizarre attractions and concessions and run off. Daphne offers encouragement to Velma before chasing Fred, and Velma genuinely relaxes and smiles. Velma is suddenly bumped into by a fair attendee dressed as an executioner who seems to accidentally drop something. Oblivious the to the fact that the executioner has loitered near the gang throughout the fair, Velma tries to tell him that he dropped something but finds he is already gone. Picking up the small box, she discovers that it bears the seal of Mr. E and finds a mysterious note inside that reads, “Don’t give up: this has all happened before.” Clueless as to what could have happened before, Velma pulls one more item from the box: an old photo of the missing Mystery Incorporated with Professor Pericles circled in red pen.
- Lord Barry (single appearance)
- Amanda Littlefoot (single appearance)
- Mayor Fred Jones, Sr.
- Sheriff Bronson Stone
- Angie Dinkley
- Ben (single appearance)
- Jen (single appearance)
- Skipper Shelton
- Mr. E (voice only)
- Larry (single appearance)(no lines)(TV or computer screen)
- Executioner (single appearance)(no lines)
- Nerd pirate 1 (single appearance)
- Nerd pirate 2 (single appearance)
- Belly dancer (single appearance)(no lines)
|Lord Barry||He had a aversion to people in pirate costume.|
|Amanda Littlefoot||She had a strong aversion to people in pirate costume. One of the victims had her earring.|
|Gill Littlefoot as the Gnome||To frame his wife so he could control her fortune.|
|Frank Welker|| Scooby-Doo|
Fred Jones, Jr.
|Matthew Lillard|| Shaggy Rogers|
Nerd pirate 2
|Grey DeLisle|| Daphne Blake|
|Mindy Cohn||Velma Dinkley|
|Lewis Black||Mr. E|
|Gary Cole|| Mayor Fred Jones, Sr.|
|Frances Conroy||Angie Dinkley|
|David Markus|| Young man|
|John O'Hurley|| Skipper Shelton|
Male pirate of a couple
|Lloyd Sherr|| Lord Barry|
Nerd pirate 1
|Jeffrey Tambor||Gill Littlefoot|
|Patrick Warburton||Sheriff Bronson Stone|
|Audrey Wasilewski|| Queen Amanda|
Female pirate of a couple
- There is animosity between Scooby and Velma because of her and Shaggy secretly going to the prom in The Legend of Alice May.
- Sheriff Stone's notebook with Jen's report clearly reads "NUTS!!" on the top.
- Velma not wanting to dress in a fair costume is similar to standard continuity Velma not wanting to do the same in What's New, Scooby-Doo? episode Large Dragon at Large. Although the latter was forced, where as the former got off easy.
- Angie Dinkley's book, I'm Okay, You're a Scary Gnome parodies the famous psychological self-help book, I'm Okay, You're Okay.
- Two paramedics taking the frozen pirates to the theatre look suspiciously like Randolph Mantooth and Kevin Tighe from the popular 70s TV show Emergency, where they played paramedics.
- Some of the men coming into the Royal Knights Fair seem to be dressed as Dirk the Daring from the game Dragon's Lair.
- In the background, there is a pirate suit very similar to Jack Sparrow of Pirates of the Caribbean.
Inconsistencies/continuity errors and/or goofs/oddities
- Mr. E calls the gang, Mystery Incorporated, which they didn't take until the next episode.
- After Scooby frees Shaggy and they fall into the hole, Shaggy's pirate hat clearly falls near it, but not in it. However, when Shaggy and Scooby climb out of it, Shaggy has it on his head.
- Although unrevealed, the executioner would presumably be either Ed Machine (if not Mr. E).
In other languages
|Spanish (Latin America)||El Ataque del Gnomo||Attack of the Gnome|
|Spanish (Spain)||El Abrazo del Gnomo||The Hug of the Gnome|
|Italy||Il Ghigno Dello Gnomo||The Grin Of The Gnome|
|Portuguese||Nas Garras do Gnomo||In the Clutches of the Gnome|
|Hungarian||Lovagi karnevál||Knight Carnival|
|French||Le Gnome Sombre||The Shadow Gnome|
|Greek||Το Άγγιγμα του Νάνου||The Touch of the Elf|
- Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated: Season One, Volume 2 DVD released by Warner Home Video on May 10, 2011.
- Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated: The Complete Season 1 DVD set released by Warner Home Video on October 8, 2013.
- Scooby-Doo! Mystères associés: L'intégrale de la saison 1 (Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated: The entirety of season 1) DVD set released by Warner Home Video on October 3, 2012.
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