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Yuri and the Bear Gallery Transcript
This is a transcribed copy of the episode "Yuri and the Bear".

Feel free to add to this page as long as the information comes directly from the episode.

Previous: "Baby Bears on a Plane" Next: "Icy Nights"
"Where is it?"
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Setting: a snowy landscape. Baby Ice Bear pops out of the snow. He sees a grey seagull flying through the air and licks his lips. The bird lands some distance from him. When he tries to pounce on it, it flies off. He hears dogs barking and dives back into the snow. As he burrows through it, he bumps into the pole of a big tent. He sniffs the air and smells something delicious - a trail of steam from the tent. He enters cautiously.

Inside, he finds many things, including a crude world map, which shows a large amount of ice covering the Arctic, and the source of the smell (a pot). He opens it to see a brown stew. Without warning, he hears footsteps outside and sees a shadow at the base of the tent's entrance. He dashes under the bed to hide. He sees grey boots, and then an axe strikes the floor in front of him. An old man with an ushanka and a thick beard bends down to look at him.

Man, in a Russian accent: Rat!

He lifts the bed, but Ice Bear leaps into a nearby armchair. The chase continues, but comes to an end as the man trips over a stool and hurts his ankle.

Man: (mumbles in Russian)

Ice Bear hands him a roll of bandages.

Man: Unbelievable. (sighs)

He looks at Ice Bear, who has an innocent look on his face.

Man: Yuri wants large snow rat to leave. Don't you have place to be?

Ice Bear looks at him blankly. The sound of dogs barking interrupts them, and Yuri pulls back the tent entrance to see 3 hunters passing by on dog sleds loaded with equipment.

Lead Hunter: Hyah! Come on!

He makes eye contact with Yuri. His face is scarred, and he is wearing a polar bear pelt as a cape. Yuri looks back at Ice Bear, who is hiding behind a bookshelf.

Yuri: (stern look) Hmph.

He closes the flap and sits in an armchair.  

Yuri: Ah. Yuri needs hot tea.

Ice Bear: (quizzical look)

Yuri: Aah. Fetch Yuri tea! (points to cabinet) Go!

Ice Bear: (picks up a can of beans)

Yuri: Nyet! It’s, uh, box. (forms shape with hands)

Ice Bear picks up the right box.

Yuri: Yes. Bring to Yuri.

While Yuri puts the kettle on the stove, Ice Bear spots a fancy wooden chest with a golden lock. He opens it, but before he can see anything, Yuri slams it shut.

Yuri: Yuri’s business. Not for bear. (pushes him)

As his ankle gives out, he collapses, but Ice Bear slides his chair underneath him just in time.

Yuri: Yuri will let you stay if you work. Yuri will give you chores. Yuri will make bear earn keep and food. (holds out hand) Yuri wants deal. (They shake.)  

An upbeat Russian song begins playing.

Yuri demonstrates how to chop wood. Ice Bear cannot lift the axe, so he receives a smaller one. Yuri then teaches more survival skills: cutting fish, reading/writing the Russian alphabet, fixing the snowmobile, and knitting. Soon, Ice Bear masters the skills: he writes calculus equations, prepares fish with a fancy sauce, and fixes the snowmobile himself. Over this period, Yuri’s sprain heals, and he and Ice Bear bond by looking at the map and riding the snowmobile together in addition to their other activities.

Song stops.

While Ice Bear is alone in the tent, cleaning the furniture, he opens the chest. Inside are books, a telescope, a circular object on a chain, letters, and a framed photo of a younger Yuri with a woman and a girl. All look happy, and the girl is holding a wooden horse. Ice Bear hears Yuri coming and closes the chest. When Yuri walks in, he is sweeping the floor and whistling innocently. The scene skips to later that night, when Ice Bear is sleeping at the foot of Yuri’s bed.

The next day, Ice Bear is chopping wood.

Yuri: Yuri is going out. Be back later.

Ice Bear picks up a piece of wood and walks away.

Later, Yuri and he are playing cards. After Ice Bear wins, Yuri laughs and ruffles his head. Ice Bear then comes to Yuri with a box, which is held shut with string tied in a bow.

Yuri: For Yuri? (opens box to see wooden horse and gasps) Yuri… Yuri wants to know how you know this.

Ice Bear: (shows him the photo from the chest, smiling)

Yuri: (looks at the open chest and grunts angrily) Yuri told you not bear’s business! Give to Yuri!

Ice Bear accidentally drops the photo, shattering the glass. Yuri picks it up and looks angrily at Ice Bear, who backs away.

Yuri: (breaks a table and throws a chair across the tent) Get out!

Ice Bear runs out. As he looks back, a tear escapes from his eye. He takes a step and a metal bear trap closes on his left paw. As he struggles, the sound of the chain alerts the hunting dogs in the distance. The hunters, who are sitting around a campfire, hear them whining.

Lead Hunter: (laughs, sheaths knife) Let’s move!

Yuri, staring sadly at the photo, hears barking. Ice Bear sees the hunting party approaching on the sleds. As he continues pulling at the chain, he sees Yuri standing over him with an axe, which comes down and breaks the chain. Yuri picks up Ice Bear and speeds away in the snowmobile.

Lead Hunter: (points) Over there! Mush! Mush! Come on!

Ice Bear looks back to see the hunters falling behind. Just as he sighs in relief, smoke starts coming from the snowmobile. Yuri dismounts, taking the axe and Ice Bear to the water’s edge. When he puts his foot down, hairline cracks appear. The hunters, who have caught up, get off their sleds and approach.

Yuri: (puts down Ice Bear) Idti! (“Go!” in Russian)

His axe crashes into the ice, breaking off the piece that Ice Bear is standing on and sending it drifting into the ocean.

Lead Hunter: No! (dives toward Ice Bear, but is too late)

Ice Bear looks back at Yuri with a deeply sad expression. Yuri walks away.

Ice Bear sniffs and rubs the axe, which Yuri had left stuck in the piece of ice. Yuri’s name is carved into the handle. Back in the tent, Yuri places the broken picture and the wooden horse on top of his dresser. Ice Bear’s expression changes from tearful to serious as he picks up the axe and swirls it like Yuri did.

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