"Zippleback Down" is the ninth episode of Dragons: Defenders of Berk. It aired on Cartoon Network on November 21, 2013. It is preceded by "Appetite for Destruction" and is succeeded by the two-part episode, "A View to a Skrill, Part 1".
|“||Barf and Belch are Tuffnut's only guard when he gets caught in an old dragon trap in the forest. Things go from bad to worse when Tuffnut is faced with not only a large Typhoomerang, but a deadly forest fire that soon threatens him and both the dragons.||”|
|— Official website|
At the Academy, Gobber teaches and demonstrates how to deactivate deadly dragon traps once used before the peace with dragons came out, the Twins aren't doing well in paying attention. When Gobber lets them deactivate themselves, Hiccup, Astrid, and Fishlegs successfully deactivate their traps. When Snotlout tries to deactivate a Netter trap without full knowledge of the mechanism, he suddenly activates it and gets caught, he is later freed by Hiccup and Astrid. When the Twins try to deactivate a Snapper, they just proceed ahead while having a staring contest and activates it, nearly losing their heads. Gobber then instructs the Riders that there are still dozens of working dragon traps still left out on the island and their mission is to decommission them.
Hiccup asks the Twins if they've paid attention and can handle it, they obviously did not. Hiccup repeats their mission but Hiccup suddenly doubts their actions and is reluctant right now to have them involved. The Twins took it harsh and felt it was an insult and they leave to do their mission trying to prove to Hiccup that they are not useless. Hiccup is left with guilt.
Moments later, the Twins arrive in the middle of the forest in search for hidden traps. Tuffnut finds a Netter Trap, but without full logic on how to disarm it, he justly approaches the trap and is caught. Ruffnut tries to watch in humor, but when Tuffnut tries to whine, Ruffnut seeks help from Hiccup. However, Ruffnut realizes she needs Tuffnut to ride their dragon in order to fly properly, Tuffnut suggests hand signals will do it, but it only worked in a short amount of time when Tuffnut suddenly exclaims in expression, to Belch to return and save him and he does so resulting Barf and Belch crashing. Ruffnut then suggests that she walks back while their dragon stands guard with Tuffnut. Ruffnut, however, explores the forest by guessing which direction must she take.
Meanwhile, Hiccup and Toothless are doing well-disarming traps, but when Hiccup feels the dry hot wind and recalling no rain has dropped for two months, he discovers it's Fire Weather and heads back to the village. Meanwhile, Tuffnut thinks he can use his dragon training abilities to get him freed, he orders Barf and Belch to untrap him, but it results of him being head bumped by the dragon and he dangles highly causing him to smack into the tree, but Tuffnut loved it and allows Barf and Belch to do it one more time.
On Berk, Hiccup discovers that his father, Stoick is already well aware of Fire Weather after learning Gobber's skin has gone dry. Stoick assigns Hiccup to make sure that no dragon will breathe fire as it will ultimately result in Berk being set ablaze, especially the Twins' dragon.
Meanwhile, Ruffnut finds hard to navigate her way and she is knocked unconscious by a Terrible Terror throwing an apple to her painfully. Tuffnut is trying to keep himself busy by talking to Barf and Belch, he then tries to think so hard of a way to free himself but to no avail and admits he is useless. Suddenly, something big is nearing him and shockingly discovers a huge Typhoomerang approaching him and tries to shout out for help.
Barf and Belch try their best to fend off the Typhoomerang but is overpowered and thrown back, when Tuffnut tells them to fight again, Barf and Belch set foot to a trap called the Roper and is pinned down by the bolas it threw. As the Typhoomerang approaches, Barf and Belch try to elude it with a fiery blast but it shields itself with its huge wings causing a small flame to fly away halfway across the forest. When it lands, the fire weather feeds it, causing it to grow into a massive blaze of fire now burning everything it touches.
Meanwhile, the Typhoomerang confronts Tuffnut, before it does something, Tuffnut gets it involved with a staring contest and the dragon loses. He then takes a close inspection of the dragon and begins to feel that the Typhoomerang is very familiar to him and tries to recall when was the first time he met the dragon. When the dragon roars, the two begin to roar at each other to see who is the loudest. After that, they begin to do fun things together as the dragon begins to take a liking with Tuffnut.
Back on Berk, all the Riders have done their task of disarming traps in their assigned area except for the Twins, Hiccup begins to worry and sets out to find them alone as he is their responsibility of letting them do their mission in the first place.
Still unaware of the massive fire erupting behind them, Tuffnut and the Typhoomerang continue their bonding. Tuffnut teaches the Typhoomerang commands such as raising the dragons' wings and making him do a spin, and Tuffnut is impressed that it's successful. Meanwhile, Ruffnut stumbles upon a close location of the massive fire erupting and fears Tuffnut is in danger and decides to return to him instead by retracing her steps.
The massive fire is eating everything it can occupies and continues to grow bigger and travel faster throughout the forest. Meanwhile, Hiccup and Toothless arrive at the forest and quickly spot the uncontrollable inferno, he claims that the fire is near wherever the Twins are and heads through it.
Ruffnut returns to Tuffnut and discovers that he trained the Typhoomerang, Ruffnut then bums out Tuffnut by informing him that the huge fire is heading his way and is very close. Tuffnut at first seems not surprised, but when Ruffnut begins to leave, he quickly requests her help. Hiccup and Toothless also near the Twins and shockingly spot the Typhoomerang. Due to intense heat, Toothless' prosthetic tail begins to burn but luckily makes it to the clearing near the Twins.
The Typhoomerang quickly seems to see them as a threat, but Hiccup suddenly realizes that he knows the dragon. Just then, the Typhoomerang covers them with its wings, the Twins presumed they have been eaten, but when it unfolds its wings Hiccup and Toothless are seen unharmed. Hiccup then confronts the dragon and touches his face for a close inspection, he recalls the dragon is actually Torch, who is now an adult Typhoomerang. But Toothless isn't fed up with Torch's return, the two quickly recall their old rivalry as Torch wacks Toothless with its tail and begins a dispute, but Hiccup tells them to get a hold of themselves as the inferno is dangerously close. Unable to free Tuffnut due a tighten lock and not enough time, Torch grabs the trap holding Tuffnut while the rest all gets a lift with Torch.
As they fly over, Hiccup discovers the fire is near the village and if the fire travels through the forest, Berk will be devoured by the fire before the Riders can prevent it. Torch is ordered by Hiccup sets down ahead of the fire for an attempt to repel the fire's crusade. However, when they land they discover the fire is already near them it Hiccup sees it as too late to do anything to stop it. But Tuffnut says that Torch can help by letting him spin around causing the wind to expand the fire, but Hiccup tells him that they need water instead. But Tuffnut says that the only way to stop the fire is to fight it with fire.
Hiccup sees it as a brilliant idea from the Twins, as he claims that if they can repel the fire from traveling through by clearing the trees ahead of it, there will be nothing left to burn thus weakening the blaze. Hiccup orders the dragons to blast the fire with their own dragon firepower. Then, they have to keep the fire's direction backward, the dragons use their wings to create repelling winds and when Torch flaps his wings, the plan's progress quickly begins to prove efficient. Torch is then commanded by Hiccup to do a spin, in which it enraptures the fire until it is weakened enough to disappear.
Finally, though the loss of many acres of trees, the fire is finally gone. Back on Berk, Torch gives a lift to the Riders with Tuffnut still in the trap. Fishlegs, Astrid, and Snotlout are surprised to see Torch again and even more as Tuffnut tells them he trained Torch himself, though Snotlout doesn't believe him but when Tuffnut proves it to him by raising Torch's wings, Snotlout gets smack in the face and falls onto a wheelbarrow causing him to roll away through the village.
Torch then hears his family is looking for him and needs to leave, Torch gives Tuffnut one more embrace as he gestures farewell, Tuffnut is disappointed but is thankful for him of being the only one who ever listened to him. Tuffnut gives him one more roar for goodbye, as Torch roars too in goodbye and Torch makes his way home. Tuffnut then requests that he wants to be freed from the trap, but Gobber tells him he still has to do it himself.
Nightfall dawns at the Academy and Tuffnut still isn't freed, as Ruffnut tries to disarm it she gets caught in the trap herself too causing her to be stuck next to Tuffnut. Barf and Belch ditch them, and the Twins are stuck for the rest of the night arguing to each other.
- When Hiccup asks Toothless to make wind, his tail isn't burned up.
- For some reason, the Twins are trapped in the Academy's trap and not the one where Tuffnut was trapped in.
- Torch made a return in this episode, now as a full grown Typhoomerang.
- This is the third episode to have a flashback in it. It is also the first not to have a flashback in the beginning, and it being from a previous episode.
- The way Tuffnut and Torch roared at each other was similar to the way he did with Hiccup in "The Terrible Twos".
- It seems the Ruffnut and Tuffnut have discovered the phrase, "fight fire with fire".
- Apparently, Gobber can tell it's "fire weather" by checking his chin, specifically if it's dry.
- Tuffnut makes a comment about Hiccup being the "Dragon Conqueror", which is what the Outcasts first called him in "Alvin and the Outcasts".
- Despite the belief that Typhoomerangs can't be ridden due to the fire they emit from their bodies, Hiccup, Ruffnut, Tuffnut, and their dragons were able to ride on Torch's back without getting burned. This may mean that like Monstrous Nightmares, the Typhoomerang can control its body fire depending on the situation.
- The title comes from film Black Hawk Down.
- The Twins can supposedly get in trouble anywhere, including an empty room.
- At the time of the episode, it hadn't rained for two months.
- Jay Baruchel as Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III
- America Ferrera as Astrid Hofferson
- Nolan North as Stoick the Vast
- Chris Edgerly as Gobber the Belch
- Christopher Mintz-Plasse as Fishlegs Ingerman
- T.J. Miller as Tuffnut Thorston
- Andrée Vermeulen as Ruffnut Thorston
- Zack Pearlman as Snotlout Jorgenson
- Night Fury
- Deadly Nadder
- Monstrous Nightmare
- Hideous Zippleback
- Terrible Terror
- Astrid's kransen
- Dragon traps
- Hiccup's prosthetic leg
- Hiccup's shield
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