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Letter Late than Never

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Letter Late than Never
Lumpy has pride in his job, and
all he needs is a little inspiration.
Season: TV Season 1
Episode: 10.3
Title Reference/Pun: Better late than never
Aired: December 3, 2006
Writers: Kenn Navarro
Warren Graff
Ken Pontac
David Winn
Jeff Biancalana
Director: Kenn Navarro
Starring Roles
Featuring Roles
Toothy's Tortoise
Part 1
Happy Tree Friends - Letter Late than Never (Part 1)04:20

Happy Tree Friends - Letter Late than Never (Part 1)

Part 2
Happy Tree Friends - Letter Late than Never (Part 2)02:55

Happy Tree Friends - Letter Late than Never (Part 2)

Previous Episode Wipe Out!
Next Episode Wingin' It

Letter Late than Never is episode number 10.3 of the Happy Tree Friends television series.

HTF Episode Description

Neither rain, nor snow, nor heat, nor gloom of night shall keep mailman Lumpy from his appointed rounds. (DVD)


While sorting letters at the post office, mail carrier Lumpy begins rummaging through the mail. He begins eating the contents of a box of chocolates while reading a depressing letter. He gets chocolate all over the paper and blows his nose on it when the letter begins to make him break down into tears. He then takes and stretches out a sweater from a box, before picking up his mail bag and heading out on his route. Before he leaves the building, he looks at a painting of another mail-moose on the wall, saluting and taking pride in his duties.

As he walks up to his first house, he is frightened to see a doghouse with a skull over the doorway. He is relieved to find a turtle come out and begins rubbing its head with his finger. The turtle bites down hard on his finger, making him scream and flail wildly. He begins running back to his mail truck, but numerous obstacles slow him down as the turtle slowly chases after him. While trying to find the right key to open the door, he is attacked by the turtle. He barely manages to get into his truck and escape with his life.

He licks a stamp, puts it on one of his cuts, and sadly takes his mail carrier's hat off. When he looks at a small picture of the mail-moose, however, he gets a resurgence of pride and puts his cap back on. His next stop is Pop and Cub's house. Pop had previously taken out the garbage, including a cardboard box, which Cub, wanting to play, climbed into. Lumpy thinks the box is mail and tosses it into his truck. He turns around to see the turtle slowly walking up the road to attack him again. Lumpy looks through the mail for things to protect himself and eventually comes across a can of dog repellent. He has difficulty pointing the can forward and sprays himself in the eyes three times before getting attacked by the turtle again. Once more, he manages to escape into his truck and drives off.

Lumpy puts more stamps over his cuts and curses loudly as he throws off his mail carrier's cap. Upon looking at the picture of the mail-moose, however, Lumpy once more feels pride for his job and continues on his way. He now comes to Giggles' house and realizes that the sweater he is wearing is meant for her. He takes it off and puts it back in the box, but when Giggles puts it on, it is too big for her. Lumpy drives off and carelessly splashes Giggles with muddy water. The sun comes out, however, drying the water and causing the sweater to shrink to a perfect fit. Giggles laughs at her luck, but the sweater continues to shrink. Giggles struggles to pull it off, but it shrinks so much that she is unable to move her arms. The blood flow to her head eventually stops, causing her head to turn burgundy-colored, and her ears puff up. Her body eventually gets to point where her head just forces itself off. Her detached head deflates like a balloon, landing in her mailbox, where blood seeps out seconds later.


Anybody want a pepperoni and Cub pizza?

Next on Lumpy's route is Cuddles' house, where Lumpy, for some reason, thinks the box he picked up at Pop's house is supposed to go. Lumpy realizes that the box is too big for the mail slot, but decides to slide it through anyway. Cuddles hears Lumpy and walks to his door. He grabs the box, which now resembles a pizza box, from the slot. He opens the box and sees Cub's flattened body, resembling a bloody, bone- and organ-filled pizza. Cuddles drops the box and runs away, screaming.

Lumpy finally reaches the last house on his route, but upon trying to put a letter in the mailbox, it collapses. He sees that the house is up a tall mountain, so he begins his trek to do his duty. Neither rain, nor snow, nor heat, nor gloom of night keeps him from the completion of his appointed rounds. He makes it to the top of the mountain, only to find the turtle, whom has somehow reached the top, waiting for him. He backs away in fright and falls off the mountain, breaking numerous bones and dislodging part of his spine from his body when he hits the ground. The turtle appears before him and grabs Lumpy's foot in its mouth. It begins pulling Lumpy into its shell, eating him as it goes. Lumpy sees the dog repellent and tries to grab it to save himself, but his antlers touch the button and once again send the spray right into his eyes. As the turtle finishes eating Lumpy, it spits one of his antlers out of its shell. Before the story ends, the turtle belches loudly with Lumpy's blood.


"Good things come in small packages"


  1. Giggles is decapitated when a sweater she is wearing shrinks too much.
  2. Cub is flattened when Lumpy shoves a box he is in through a mail slot.
  3. Lumpy is eaten by a killer turtle.


  1. Lumpy's finger is bitten by the killer turtle.
  2. Lumpy falls on a bike.
  3. Lumpy slips on a roller skate and falls on his back.
  4. Lumpy steps on the hard end of a rake and is hit in the face.
  5. Lumpy is attacked by the killer turtle. (twice)
  6. Lumpy sprays mace in his eyes. (four times)
  7. Lumpy falls off a mountains and breaks his entire body on impact with the ground.
  8. The killer turtle breaks Lumpy's ankle before it starts eating him.


  1. Lumpy stretches out a sweater too much.
  2. Lumpy shoves a large box through a door's mail slot.
  3. An old mailbox post crumbles after Lumpy touches it.


  1. The directions of Lumpy's antlers change numerous times, sometimes during continuous shots.
  2. When Lumpy is eating the chocolate from the box at the beginning of the episode, he eats 7 of the 12 pieces, but after he finishes reading the sad letter, the 7 pieces he ate all reappear in the box.
  3. When Lumpy looks at the can of dog spray, his point of view is inconsistent with his position.
  4. The sweater Lumpy wears is torn in several places after he is attacked by the turtle the second time. When he gives the sweater to Giggles, however, the sweater has no tears in it. The creators probably did this to give Giggles a reason to be impressed.
  5. When Cuddles opens the box with Cub's body inside, he uses his left hand to open it. When he looks into the box containing Cub, his left hand is on the side of the box. Before he throws the box down and runs away, his left hand once again is holding the box open.
  6. Additionally, when Cuddles opens the box and throws it down in terror, one can see his fingers, but when he is looking into the box, he has mitten-hands.
  7. The mountain Lumpy climbs is at an incline, but it becomes a straight drop when he falls.
  8. The broken mailbox becomes much closer to the road after Lumpy falls off the cliff.
  9. The outline of the dog on the dog spray faces to the right the first time Lumpy uses it, but it faces to the left when Lumpy is being eaten.
  10. The cut on Lumpy's finger disappears after he gets into his mail truck.
  11. It would have been impossible for the turtle to get up and down the mountain before Lumpy did.
  12. After Lumpy uses the keys to open the door to his car, they suddenly disappear when he enters his car.
  13. Giggles clearly notices the sweater shrinking when exposed to sunlight, yet does not move away from the sunlight. (Though the sweater may have shrunk so much in such a short amount of time that she was unable to move her legs.)
  14. When Lumpy drives away from Giggles, he drives through a mud puddle, splashing mud all over her sweater. This changes the color of the sweater to a darker shade. However, in the next shot, the color of the sweater reverts to the way it was before it got covered in mud.
    1. However, the color might have changed back to normal to show that the sweater was drying.
  15. When Giggles is killed, her tongue can be seen sticking out of her mouth, even though her mouth is closed.


  • The title of this episode is a pun on the saying "better late than never", which means that doing something late is better than not doing it at all.
  • When this episode was aired along with A Sight for Sore Eyes and Wipe Out! on YouTube, the title for the mix of these segments was "Ten Speed" (originally called "Going Ten Crazy"). Lumpy and Cuddles appear in all three episodes. Lumpy dies twice while Cuddles dies once.
  • Nica Lorber has mentioned that she did Giggles' voice in this episode due to Ellen Connell being unavailable at the time. This happens again in A Bit of a Pickle, but with Petunia instead of Giggles.
  • Cuddles being horrified of Cub's crushed remains soon became an internet fad or meme, where users on YouTube put random images into the box, and Cuddles screams after the image insults him. The videos of this fad would usually be named "Dear, I found ________ in the pizza box".
  • This is one of the few TV episodes where Lumpy eats a random sandwich. The others are Home Is Where the Hurt Is and A Change of Heart.
  • Lumpy's climb up the mountain to the last house on his route is a reference to the alleged motto of the U.S. Postal Service (in actuality, the U.S. Postal Service has no motto. The words "Neither rain, nor snow, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds" are, however, inscribed over the entrance to the General Post Office in New York).
  • The group of featuring characters in this episode is the exact same group of featuring characters as in the episode From Hero to Eternity.
  • Nobody dies until 5 minutes have passed in this episode.
  • This episode holds the highest number of times one character is injured throughout the episode.
  • This is one of four times in the TV series where Lumpy is killed by animals (the other three being Doggone It, Take a Hike, and Mime to Five.
  • Lumpy's death is the second longest in the whole TV series, next to Sniffles' death in Tongue in Cheek.
  • This is one of the many episodes where a character makes "puppy eyes". The other instances are Russell and Lumpy in Get Whale Soon, Lumpy in Class Act, Toothy in Better Off Bread, Nutty in Icy You, Petunia, Giggles, Lumpy in Stealing the Spotlight, Flaky in Ski Ya, Wouldn't Wanna Be Ya!, Lumpy in In a Jam, Lifty in Easy For You to Sleigh, Fliqpy in Hear Today, Gone Tomorrow, Sniffles in Wrath of Con, and Lumpy in All In Vein and in Aw, Shucks!.
  • This was arguably Lumpy's longest and most torturous death until The Chokes on You, where he would suffer a shorter, but more torturous death.
  • Lumpy is shown to eat chocolates in a heart-shaped box, something he does previously in Blind Date.
  • The music used when Lumpy sees the killer turtle is also used in the HTF arcade game Hot Potato.
  • While Lumpy is attempting to escape from the killer tortoise, the music playing sounds similar to Jaws.
  • Giggles' death is similar to her own death in Pretty in Shrink.
  • Pop and Cuddles are the only survivors of this episode, just like in Sea What I Found and Doggone It (Debatable).
  • The opening music in this episode is called "Merrily We Walk", the full version of which can be heard here.

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