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Monday, October 10, 2011

Goosebumps at 33: The Headless Ghost

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Previously on Goosebumps at 33…

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The Headless Ghost

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That sure is a whole hell of a lot of shit going on to start things off, isn't it? You're probably all like, "what the hell is this crap, huh?" Well, if you're still here after all those crazy photos, this is Goosebumps at 33, a yearly Chucktober tradition (as in, I did it last year) where I watch and review Goosebumps episodes without any nostalgic bias, whatsoeva. The kicker here is I am watching episodes of the much beloved children's horror show, for the first time, through the eyes of a 33-year-old man, who is now actually 34. Details, brah. 

First up on Goosebumps at 33, I have a little ditty known as The Headless Ghost, a title that I am positive I will mistakenly type as The Headless Horseman at least seventy-five times.

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Originally airing on September 21st, 1996, this season 2 episode focuses on Duane and Stephanie, who have become best known around town as the Twin Terrors of Wheeler Falls. You see, both Duane and Stephanie, who are not actually twins (talk about false advertising), have built a nice little reputation for themselves by pulling off pranks and scaring the poop out of the residents of Wheeler falls. Their main place to practice such tomfoolery is Hill House, a tourist attraction haunted by the ghost of a headless boy. As the tale goes, some moron kid was so into strawberry ice cream (strawberry, really?) that he fell into a dumbwaiter and somehow it decapitated him or some shit. Bet that wouldn't have happened if he was eating chocolate ice cream, because chocolate ice cream is for people that win. 

In any event, Duane (who has this marvelous '20s styled Flapper hairdo) and Stephanie grow bored of pulling off such elaborate pranks and decide they need a good, true scare for themselves. They figure the best way to do so is to spend a night in Hill House searching for the head of the mediocre-berry ice cream loving boy. Little do they know, they are in for the scare of their lives.

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I suppose the one thing that sticks out in The Headless Ghost is one-half of the Twin Terrors, Stephanie. The best way to describe Stephanie is she is a full on obnoxious busybody, who has little to no redeeming qualities about her. She lacks respect for even the simplest of things, for instance, she uses the term "smooth move," but completely neglects to mention anything about Ex Lax?! Like, listen here, Steph with the lame-ass laugh, that line don't work without the Ex Lax ending, so get your head out of your idiot ass and learn how to rank of peeps properly, kay?

Outside of Steph-fanny face, The Headless Ghost is actually a great episode in the Goosebumps library. It has a nice, creepy colonial setting with the Hill House itself, giving it an instant spooky factor. It would also makes for one of the more serious episode in the series, or at least more so than others that I have seen thus far. It's mostly all about the scares and atmosphere, though there are a few simply adorable moments strewn throughout! One of my favs is a simple little line that plays out in a very funny but subtle way. It involves a scene where a ghost wants Duane's head, so he pointedly tells him, "I need your head, Duane!," at which point Duane simply responds by saying, "I do too…" It's pretty hysterical.     

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As with every episode of Goosebumps, there is indeed a twist, however, The Headless Ghost breaks free of the oppressive chains of one single boring plot twist by giving the viewer not one but TWO different twists! Yowzaziwowa!! I won't go into detail about either of them (you know, in case you might watch the episode?), but I will say that super-bitch Stephanie learns a little lesson about respect. And thank heaven for that, 'cause that chick pissed me the crap off from moment one.

The Headless Horseman is a solid episode that would certainly entertain any fan of the series, and more importantly, it's a nice way to kick off Goosebumps at 33. Great location, fun story and it's nice and SPOOOOKY!

Until next time kiddies…

3 comments:

  1. Haha!!! I forget: dumpster dive or Instant Watch? I can understand why these programs are for kids now. As an adult, you watch these child characters and all you wanna do is kick them in the neck.

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  2. I was actually the targeted viewing age when this show came on, and I still remember it being shit then. It was not at all faithful to the books that I so cherished, and it looked cheap as hell. Are You Afraid of the Dark it was not!

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  3. Ashlee: I YouTubed this one, Ashlee! It's funny how when we were kids we actually thought some of these characters were cool and shit. Then you realize that you would much rather kick them in the neck, as you so perfectly put it!

    Anon: I've seen maybe an episode of AYAotD, so I know little about it. One show that I have watched as an adult is Eerie Indiana (which isn't exactly straight horror), which is a ton of fun to me as an adult, and I can only imagine it would have been a blast had I watched it when I was younger.

    Also, whenever I write about these Goosebumps episodes, a few searches through Google quickly reveals that there is very little to the episodes in comparison to the stories found in the actual books. I guess that's what you get with a half hour show.

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