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|“||We're not bullies. We're kids who have a hard time expressing our emotions in a constructive manner.||„|
|~ Rattles Ciccone|
The Tough Customers are a group of bullies in Lakewood Elementary and major antagonists in the picture book series and TV show Arthur. All the members are in 4th grade, with the exception of Binky, who is a third-grader due to being held back. Like most bully groups, they seem to bully others just because they are bigger and stronger than them. They are usually shown bullying Arthur and his friends, although Binky typically only does so when he is with the group. As of the episode "The Last Tough Customer", they have all semi-redeemed and are no longer bullies.
- Shelley "Binky" Barnes: Although he was originally a bully, he later became one of Arthur's friends. He is still in third grade due to being held back. Oddly enough, he likes butterflies and he takes ballet. Binky is shown to be more sensitive than the other members. Though he is now Arthur's friend, he is still a bit of a bully and enjoys maintaining his strong personality.
- Molly MacDonald: Molly is one of the main members of the Tough Customers. She is a huge tomboy. She listens to heavy metal and is particularly fond of a band named Mutacrude - a parody of Motorhead. Like Binky, she also shows a gentler side, as evidenced by the fact that she is protective of her little brother James and occasionally hangs out with the third graders. She becomes friends with Arthur in Season 11. She enjoys making fun of Arthur's friends, especially Muffy, whom she calls "money bags". She and her brother are of Scottish descent. The reason she became a bully is because some older kids made fun of her hairdo when she was in preschool. She stops being a bully when she discovered she was imitated by her younger brother James. Although she is good at giving advice, she dislikes the fact that everybody comes to her for it. Molly has long maroon hair that almost always covers her eyes and she often wears sleeveless shirts. Arthur's sister D.W. is implied to have a crush on her brother.
- Rattles: A member of unidentified species who seems to be one of the toughest and meanest of the Tough Customers. He also has a sensitive side, but very rarely shows it. He often steps in as leader of the group when Binky isn't around. He doesn't seem to be very smart due to the fact that he can't seem to be as good at bullying as Binky. He enjoys fighting with others. He also enjoys extreme sports and has been prone to attempt to perform dangerous stunts (only to be stopped by someone with more common sense).
- Slink: A tall, lanky rabbit who is another recurring member. He originally went to Mighty Mountain but now goes to Lakewood. He enjoys making fun of Arthur and Buster. His attitude is cocky and a bit ditzy. He is a skateboarder and is first shown in the episode "Buster and the Daredevils", where he and Toby mock Buster and Arthur for still acting like kids. He has a sister named Nancy who sometimes hangs out with D.W.
- Billy: A member who is a bear. He was first named in the episode "Buster Makes the Grade". Although a member of the Tough Customers, he is only occasionally seen being with them. Despite being a bully, he appears to be friends with Buster.
- Fletcher: A cat member who is usually seen with the other Tough Customers at lunch. In the episode "Arthur Goes to Camp", it is shown that before she became a member of the group, she was part of a group with other kids at Camp Horsewater who were the rivals of the Camp Meadowcroak kids.
- Unnamed male dog: First appeared in the episode "D.W. All Wet" and has appeared in various places since, usually with other Tough Customers members. So far his only speaking appearances are in the episodes "Arthur Goes to Camp" and "Arthur's Big Hit". Curiously, in "Arthur Goes to Camp" he actually opposed Binky and was then shown hanging out with him in the episode "Arthur Writes a Story" with no explanation, so how he came to be a part of the Tough Customers is unknown.
- Unnamed male rabbit: A member who is exclusively seen with other members in the cafeteria of Lakewood Elementary at lunchtime. He has so far had only one speaking role, in "Arthur Goes to Camp", and has since been relegated to a background character. In later seasons, he hasn't had nearly as many appearances as before, but he did make an appearance in the 15th season's premiere episode, "Fifteen".
- Unnamed female aardvark: A member who debuted in "Arthur Goes to Camp", in which she was one of the attendees of Camp Horsewater who were Camp Meadowcroak's opponents in a scavenger hunt. Out of all the members, she has the least amount of appearances in the series and is mostly a background character.
- Toby: A skateboarder shown as the main antagonist in "Buster and the Daredevils". He seemed to have little personality outside of his bully attitude. He forced Buster to eat some kind of bug, but Buster, fortunately, stood up for himself. He was Slink's friend before Slink switched schools.
- Kiefer: A member who enjoys fighting and one of the strongest members. He is large and bulky and looks like a cat. He is no longer seen or mentioned as being a member.
- Arthur Read: In the episode "Arthur, World's Greatest Sleeper", Molly tells a student of Lakewood Elementary that Arthur has a habit of "gleeping" (which is a made-up word that means "stealing"), and the Tough Customers tease him by saying that he's never gleeped anything. Buster, wanting to defend his friend and not knowing the meaning of the word, tells them that Arthur had gleeped many things, which becomes a widespread rumor around the school and causes the Tough Customers to recruit Arthur and his friends to be mad at him. Eventually, the Tough Customers ask Arthur to steal ice cream from the cafeteria to prove he is really a gleeper. Arthur, feeling he has no other choice, tries to do so but is caught by Mrs. MacGrady, and allows her to turn him in to Principal Haney. Afterward, Rattles beats Arthur repeatedly on the head with a ball as punishment for lying to the Tough Customers as Binky admonishes him. Then, Francine arrives and Arthur makes up with her and presumably the rest of his friends.
- George Lundgren: In the episode "The Boy with His Head in the Clouds", George temporarily becomes a member after Buster unintentionally makes fun of his dyslexia by asking him if he can read and he goes to Binky to ask him how to be tough, who tries to make him into a bully by teaching him to insult and push others and make rude noises, which fails because he is too kind.
- Bizarrely, Rattles's species has been altered more than once over the course of the series; this is very likely due to the fact that his ears are almost always covered by his hat, causing the show's producers to forget what he's supposed to be. Rattles was initially depicted as a cat, but an episode in Season 8 showed him as a dog instead, and then he was re-imagined as a bear in another episode in Season 18.
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