Welcome to Our Happy Ship is the pilot episode, and set the tone for the whole series.
The episode begins with Melrose and Janice (referred to as Jaydee in this episode) in what is presumably the backyard of the Stewart household. Janice is sitting on the ground, crying, while Melrose shouts horrible things at her. She tells Janice that their father hates her due to the death of their mother. Janice is whimpering, her hands over her ears. She begs and pleads with Melrose, asking her to stop. Eventually, Melrose storms into the house, calling Janice a baby and tells her not to come inside; their father doesn't want to see her ever again.
Whimpering, Janice crawls into a doghouse, probably seeking shelter. She notices a shoelace and decides to pick it up, but the ground suddenly turns to water and she finds herself in a vast ocean. She treads water, terrified, when Ms. Laughingstock's face suddenly appears in the water in front of her. The ship tells Janice not to be frightened as she is pulled on board by Pirate Percy (referred to as Prowler Percy or just Percy in the pilot).
"Don't kill me, miss. I've been good to you!" Percy shouts. Janice is confused, but Poppy quickly appears and tells Percy to stop crying; he's disgracing the pirate name. Poppy then welcomes her, telling the girl that he's happy to see her. Janice asks where she is and how he knows her, and Poppy introduces himself. He explains that she is on the Laughingstock, the best pirate ship in the world. He claims that he is her friend and only wants to help her.
"Oh dear, oh dear! The Rubber Fishes are on the horizon!" Percy calls out from the lookout, before Janice can reply. Afterward, he faints in a comical manner. Janice, frightened, asks who the Rubber Fishes are. Poppy explains they are a rival pirate gang. Janice whimpers, saying she wants to go home.
"This is your home now, lassie," Poppy says, interrupting her.
The Rubber Fishes' boat pulls along the Laughingstock and Horace Horrible appears, introducing himself as "the grrreatest pirrrrate, sorrrcerrrerrr, and vain villain of the worrrld", telling Poppy to hand over the money and the girl, and he might let them live. Poppy then exclaims he would never let the Rubber Fishes take Janice away.
Ms. Laughingstock urges Janice to fight the Rubber Fishes, but a frightened Janice refuses. Ms. Laughingstock tells Janice that she has to overcome her fears, but she hears Melrose's voice in her head. She hears her sister calling her a baby over and over. An almost murderous look comes across Janice's face, and she shoots a cannonball into the Rubber Fishes' boat, causing it to sink. She is shocked at what she has done, but everyone congratulates her.
In a seemingly mix between reality and fantasy, Janice sees by the so-called Malguins, evil emotion cumuluses created by mean people.
The episode ends with Janice saying she might learn to enjoy herself on the Laughingstock. The pilot closes with a live segment, including Janice greeting the audience.