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A Boy Named Sue
Season 3, Episode 6a
Air date March 29, 2002
Production number 305a

A Boy Named Sue is the first part of the 6th episode of the third season of Dexter's Laboratory. In this episode, Mandark reveals his backstory about his name Susan, living with his parents, and how he and Dexter met.

The episode name is a pun on the 1969 Johnny Cash song of the same name.


Mandark is in his laboratory meniachally laughing and basking in his pure evil. He is talking to himself about how evil he is and then he asks himself how he ever became so meliciously evil. Then, he tells himself the story about the time when he was first born. Mandark sits back, and begins to flash back to the day of his birth. Mandark tells his story and it takes place in the peaceful land of Flowertopia where his hippie parents Oceanbird and Windbear were in a lake giving birth to him. With Oceanbird's last breath of maternal exhalation, she had finally brought her new born lovechild into the world. They both wanted their son to be good and just like them, as soon as he was born, he was struck by a random bolt of lightning which made him truly evil on the inside.

Later, Oceanbird and Windbear were up on top of a hill where they thought about what they would name him. Oceanbird and Windbear named their child Susan because Oceanbird had requested a name without the preconcieved gender connitations. The moment the two of them named him Susan, he started crying. Oceanbird and Windbear started teaching him all about their hippie beliefs and made him do it with them. Their full intent was for him to be a good and pure flowerchild and for him to believe in peace just like them. Susan however, was still truly evil on the inside and didn't like this. Just then, Susan came across a metal gizmo on the ground. He loved everything about it and was mezmorized by how gret it was. He turned it on and it was a light bulb. Susan wanted to know everything about this and to be someone who is related to science. However, his plans for said thing would have to wait, because Oceanbird and Windbear had a different idea for his development.

Oceanbird and Windbear constantly kept doing hippie rituals with him. Activity after activity and he didn't like any of them and alsways tried to be evil. They tried making him hug trees, but he ate the trees. They tried painting beautiful murials, but he painted demonic horrors, and they tried balancing amethysts, which Mandark hated. Years after, on Susan's 8th birthday (which they ironically address to as his annual name day), Susan finally snapped because he couldn't take any more of this. He said he was done with this. He wanted meat, and he wanted science. Oceanbird and Windbear came to the realization that they were neglecting their son's needs and then had the idea to drop out. They tried traveling the world to try and cure his craving for evil and technology and Susan went along with this and did not deny it. Even though he wanted to become good, he still had the need to be evil.

Oceanbird and Windbear moved out of their town and into the neighborhood where Mandark lives now. He tried to make friends with Dexter but Dexter laughed at him for being dressed like a girl. Susan was so angry about being made fun of that he decided to become an evil genius named Mandark. Mandark became evil and wanted only to destroy Dexter and his laboratory too. He even went out and did so after he told the story but when Mandark was about to get to the door, Oceanbird and Windbear stopped him so he could put down the weaponry and do hippie rituals with them. Mandark said that even though he was here with Oceanbird and Windbear now, he would get his revenge on Dexter someday.


Major Roles

Minor Roles


Production Notes

  • This episode reveals deeper into Mandark's backstory.
  • This is the first physical appearance of Windbear.
  • Although this episode aired on 2002, it was actually made in 2001 according to the credits.

Cultural References

  • The Title of this episode shares the same name of a song called "A Boy Named Sue" It may be possible that this title is a pun or reference to that song.
  • Mandark's Parents seem to be a parody on the romantic pairing between John Lennon and Yoko Ono.
  • In this episode, Oceanbird and Windbear lived in a place called Flowertopia. Flowertopia is actually the name of a real town in Washington.

Episode Connections

  • The mirror and scissors Mandark used to cut his hair was seen again in the episode "A Mandark Cartoon".
  • In the beginning of Mandark's flashback, there is a boy flying a kite who looks exactly like Timothy from the episode "Rushmore Rumble". However, it is not likely that they are they same people because the boy was seen before Mandark was born, and in the episode Rushmore Rumble, Mandark was 13 years old while Timmy was the same age.


  • When Windbear was first holding Mandark up to the tree, his shirt was white and not orange.
  • When Windbear first started to think of a name for his baby, the white line on his hair went missing.
  • Mandark said that the first time he and Dexter met was in the neighborhood where Dexter made a huge machine and Mandark got made fun of by him for being a girly hippie named Susan. Although in the episode "Dexter's Rival" It showed that Dexter and Mandark first met in school where Mandark was a new student who was so much smarter than Dexter.
  • In this episode it showed when Mandark's lab was first built, it had the creepy gothic look but in the episode "Dexter's Rival" It showed the first time it was built, it had the futuristic look.
  • After Mandark finished the story, it showed him sitting in his chair wearing his normal clothes, but then in the next frame, he was out of his chair standing up and he was wearing an evil costume.


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