|“||Just because someone is a criminal does not mean they're not a nice person. Besides, if you're on the run from the law, you're bound to get cranky from time to time.||”|
Mrs. Bass was the math teacher at Prufrock Preparatory School during the Baudelaire childrens' stay, prior to her arrest for bank robbery.
Mrs. Bass began teaching at Prufrock Preparatory School at least forty-seven years before the arrival of the Baudelaire orphans.
She taught a class that passed for Math/Arithmetic in Room Two. Her teaching methods involved bringing a bag into her classroom every morning, placing the items on her students' desks, and demanding they measure their lengths, widths and depths. She would then write measurements on the board and have everybody switch objects, and eventually would quiz them on how long everything had been. One of her students was Isadora Quagmire.
Her obsession with the metric system seems to be seen as irritating and excessive.
|“||In all my years of teaching, I've never encountered a more metric-wise boy than Klaus, here. And it looks like Sunny is a fine secretary as well. Look at these booklets! They're gorgeous.||”|
— Mrs. Bass, The Austere Academy
Klaus Baudelaire was enrolled in Mrs. Bass's class, however, he found the curriculum boring. During one of Nero's recitals, he and his sisters notice that Remora and Bass are giggling and sharing a banana in the back row of the auditorium. Neither of them seem aware of the new gym teacher, Coach Genghis. The next morning, she has her class measure a box of pencils.
After he started to participate in S.O.R.E. during the evenings, Klaus begins failing to measure items due to his exhaustion coupled with falling asleep when Mrs. Bass expected him and the rest of the class to measure a tube sock. This caused Klaus to fail his recent metric test. She reports to Nero that Klaus "can scarcely tell one end of a metric ruler from another." Nero instructs Remora and Bass to write comprehensive exams to give to Klaus and his sister, Violet Baudelaire, on everything they have learned since they've arrived at the school, in order to determine whether or not they will be expelled.
The next morning, the two teachers and Nero arrive at the Orphans Shack to test the students. Mrs. Bass quizzes Klaus, but finds that he has memorized all of her items, and she tells Nero that not only is Klaus the most metric-wise boy she's met, but his younger sister, Sunny Baudelaire, who was being tested on her secretarial skills, made gorgeous booklets. Nero is upset, as he wanted to expel someone, and Mr. Remora suggests Carmelita, as she never studies and "is an awful person besides;" This excites Mrs. Bass, who asks Nero that they give her an extra-challenging exam instead, but to hardly any avail due to his usual favoritism.
Coach Genghis arrives and claims the Baudelaire orphans skipped gym class to study, which Mrs. Bass does not believe is cheating. However, she does not argue with Nero when he decides to expel the students. She, the other teachers, and Arthur Poe end up chasing after a fleeing Coach Genghis to discover that he is Count Olaf in disguise, and he has kidnapped the two Quagmire triplets in the process.
|“||As a teacher, I don't earn enough money to purchase any valuables, so I had to resort to a life of crime.||”|
Mrs. Bass was invited to a party at the Hotel Denouement in celebration of the metric system, telling her to bring as many valuables as possible in order to measure them. As a teacher with a poor salary, Bass resorts to a life of crime in order to purchase some valuables to measure.
Mrs. Bass eventually does rob a bank, taking several large, bulky bags with the words "PROPERTY OF MULCTUARY MONEY MANAGEMENT" stamped on them, filled with cash. She winds up bringing the bags with her to the Hotel Denouement. Arthur Poe is sent to investigate the robbery sometime after it occurs.
|“||I say they're criminals, and criminals ought to be punished.||”|
As a concierge- Sunny Baudelaire in disguise- arrives, Mr. Remora and Mrs. Bass beg Nero to cease violin practice for a little bit in order to have a lunch break. Bass recommends an Indian restaurant in Room 954 that she'd heard about and Nero finally concedes. Bass leaves her loot in the room, thinking it'll be safer there.
Upon reaching the restaurant, Bass orders ten grams of rice, one-tenth of a hectogram of shrimp vindaloo, a decagram of chana aloo masala, one thousand centigrams of tandoori salmon, four samosas with a surface area of nineteen cubic centimeters, five decilitres of mango lassi, and a sada rava dosai that's exactly nineteen centimeters long. Nero and Remora begin discussing Coach Genghis, and Mrs. Bass defends him by saying that some criminals are nice people, and people on the run from the law are bound to get cranky. Mr. Remora attempts to bring up her status as a fugitive, but Nero interrupts him, and the rest of their conversation is whispered.
Later on, when an argument breaks out at night over whether or not the Baudelaire children are murderers, Mrs. Bass claims that they are criminals and ought to be punished. During their's and Olaf's trial the next day, she submits blueprints of banks as evidence, and when the trial falls into disarray, she claims that the Baudelaires are bank robbers.
When the Hotel Denouement Fire had begun, Mrs. Bass is seen on the third story, still wearing her disguise and wearing a blindfold over her mask, muttering something about a getaway car, presumably to escape from law enforcement.
Mrs. Bass was eventually arrested for her bank robbery, causing Prufrock Preparatory School to close, leaving the building an empty, silent place.
Netflix Series Divergent Canon
Mrs. Bass's role in The Austere Academy is relatively the same. It is mentioned, however, that her new motive for a life of crime is to not have to deal with Carmelita Spats. She and Mr. Remora also unknowingly intercept the Quagmires' attempts to warn the Baudelaires that Count Olaf is on the property. She later assists in quizzing the Baudelaires in front of the school.
She and Mr. Remora later go to Caligari Carnival to watch someone get devoured by lions. They sit in front of Arthur Poe, who takes notices of her interest in banks. After the show ends and the carnival is set on fire, she leaves with Mr. Poe in order to make "a withdrawal" from his bank.
Mrs. Bass gets Mr. Poe alone in his office before knocking him out with her handbag and kidnapping him while she robs the bank. At some point, Poe develops Stockholm syndrome and befriends Bass, and they play Go Fish just before the police break in and arrest her.
Sometime during the series, she met and got into a relationship with Babs, and while she was invited to the Hotel Denouement with her girlfriend/wife/partner, Bass could not attend as she was imprisoned.
She is portrayed by B.J. Harrison.
Bass is described as having black hair so long and messy that she resembled a gorilla. After becoming a fugitive, Bass constantly wears a narrow mask and puts a small blonde wig atop her mountain of hair.
In the Netflix series, she has very short white hair, large glasses, and dark skin.
— Chapter Four
- Mrs. Bass: How wide was the book with the yellow cover?
- Klaus Baudelaire: Nineteen centimeters.
- Mrs. Bass: How long was chicken breast number seven?
- Klaus Baudelaire: Fourteen centimeters and five millimeters.
- Mr. Remora: Oh, let them stay, Nero. Why don't you expel that Carmelita Spats? She never studies, and she's an awful person besides.
- Mrs. Bass: Oh yes. Let's give her an extra-challenging examination.
|“||Smelly feet. Ew, gross.||”|
— Chapter Thirteen
|“||I'm so hungry I could eat a dekagram of rice.||”|
— Chapter Six
- Mr. Remora: How do you know there will be music critics at the party? My invitation just said there'd be an all-you-can-eat banana buffet.
- Mrs. Bass: Mine didn't say anything about music critics, either. It just says that there's a party in celebration of the metric system, and that I should bring as many valuables as possible so they could be measured. As a teacher, I don't earn enough money to purchase any valuables, so I had to resort to a life of crime.
|“||I submit these blueprints of banks!||”|
— Chapter Eleven
|“||They're bank robbers!||”|
— Chapter Twelve
- "Good morning, children. May I have your undivided attention? And that includes you, Daniel. I understand we have a brand new orphan today. It must be difficult for you to measure how unhappy you are without your parents, but we're gonna try. My name is Mrs. Bass, and we'll continue our lessons on the metric system by measuring various objects. Later we'll have a quiz. The first thing to measure is this jar of mayonnaise I found in my garage."
- "Pop quiz! Question number one. What is the circumference of yesterday's pomegranate? Question two: What are the dimensions of the vault at Mulctuary Money Management? Question three: how far apart in decimeters are the security cameras? I need you to really pay attention to these numbers and give me exactly what I'm asking for."
- Mrs. Bass, Ms. Tench and Mr. Remora are named after fish as a pun; a group of fish is called a school.
- PROSE: The Austere Academy
- Bass is referred to as "Mrs. Bass." In English, "Mrs." refers to a woman who is married, as opposed to "Miss", an unmarried woman, or "Ms", which is neutral.
- PROSE: The Penultimate Peril
- PROSE: Lemony Snicket: The Unauthorized Autobiography
- TV: The Austere Academy: Part One
- TV: The Austere Academy: Part Two
- TV: The Carnivorous Carnival: Part Two
- TV: The Slippery Slope: Part One
- TV: The Penultimate Peril: Part One