It’s been a few years since we last celebrated TV Sitcom Halloween on the VSB, but I think it is finally time to reboot the franchise! Stay tuned for the fifth installment of Halloweek featuring Full House, Family Matters, Sabrina, the Teenage Witch and more!
It’s a dark and stormy night, as Cory sits at his desk in the suburbs of Philadelphia. He writes with a quill pen, stolen from his mother’s feather duster, carefully documenting his transformation from teenage boy to WEREWOLF. (cue eerie music).
It all started the night before when Mr. Feeney told Cory that a wolf had escaped from the Philadelphia Zoo. Feeney warns him not to put the Matthews Family trash outside, but Corey doesn’t listen. And that’s when the wolf bites him. Only the next day, there is no bite mark. This can only mean that the bite came from a werewolf because your standard, run-of-the-mill wolf would definitely leave a mark.
The next day he’s hairier. Eric tell him that this could be the first signs of a werewolf transformation. He shows him a tabloid newspaper and Corey takes it seriously. After hearing about werewolf sitings on the radio, Cory seeks out the help of a medium. She mistakes him for Billy Joel at first, but she does confirm that Cory is well on his way to becoming a full-on wolf. She paints a picture of what’s to come:
Corey will develop an insatiable appetite. He will develop a pentagram in the palm of his hand. He will descend into madness and gruesomely kill the girl who “cares for him.” (Topanga, duh. But Cory doesn’t think she likes him, so he’s not worried.)
Meanwhile, Mr Turner is busy teaching Lord of the Flies. Cory arrives late, having spent too much time having his fortune told, and is given three days of detention. When Mr. Turner catches him writing a note to Shawn, Cory’s first instinct is to eat the paper. But he’s horrified to realize that an urge to eat paper just might be that new appetite he’s developing because of the wolf thing.
Mr. Turner asks to see Cory after class. So Cory sits down on Mr. Turner’s desk and picks up his keys. I guess he feels more familiar since Mr. Turner is basically Shawn’s dad. Mr. Turner has a pentagon key chain, which Cory apparently thinks is the same thing as a pentagram. He runs away and bumps into Topanga, who says that she can tell him if something is wrong because she cares about him. OH NO!
Desperate, Cory returns to the medium. She tells him he won’t kill Topanga until the full moon, which unfortunately happens to be that very night. Cory begs her to tell him how he can stop himself. Apparently, all he has to do is have someone he loves shoot him through the heart with a silver bullet. Woah. This just got reaaaal dark.
Things reach a fever pitch when Cory asks his dad to throw a silver picture frame at him “really, really hard.” Cory’s dad tells him that he’s not turning into a werewolf and it’s probably just the beginning of puberty. But Cory resists and tells him that he’s definitely turning into a canine. His dad says maybe it’s time to start shaving and goes upstairs to get a razor. At which point, Cory looks at himself in the mirror and sees a werewolf staring back at him.
So now here we are, where we started, with Cory writing his manifesto in ink, using a piece of a feather duster. Topanga then shows up, ready to go to the Halloween party. Cory tries to get rid of her before the full moon rises. But Topanga is confused by his freakout and tells him that he’s perfectly normal and needs to chill the eff out. (I’m paraphrasing.)
Cory’s all like, “I’m not a wolf! I’m not a wolf!” And then they share a kiss. And Topanga’s all like, “Yes, you are!” Lol, guyyyys he was never turning into a monster at all!
Very Special Halloween Lesson: Okay, this was really just about puberty. One really dramatic stress-response to hormonal changes.
This is a two-part Halloween episode. That’s serious business. But Amazon lied to me and told me Part II was really part I. So what follows is Part II plus what I’ve filled in from Part I:
Carlton and Will have some kind of a bet over who can be the first to find a date for Hillary’s Halloween party. This all boils down to them fighting over the same girl. That feels pretty unrealistic, but we’ll go with it. This mostly consists of them insulting each other in front of this poor girl who should not be considering either one of them at this point. Carlton even uses the R word as an insult (my, how far we have come since the 90’s).
Meanwhile, Hillary has been falsely arrested for shoplifting while she and the rest of the family attempt to find Halloween costumes. It seems pretty ridiculous that fashionista Hillary would wait until the day of a party to find an outfit, but whatever.
Will and Carlton have reached a stalemate in trying to win this girl’s affections, so they start flat-out lying to her. Will describes a “typical” night with him, which involves hanging out with Bo Jackson and Heavy D. Plus, Malcolm Jamal-Warner calls him from the set of The Cosby Show and asks for dating advice. Oh and then Quincy Jones shows up and begs him to sing on a track. But the Fresh Prince is too busy, so he calls his buddy Al B. Shure to fill in for him. Just as Al B. Shure and Quincy Jones are leaving, they talk about how they have to be sure not to miss A Different World–which is so convenient because Kadeem Hardison just happens to be hanging out at Will’s house!
Carlton can’t follow Will’s story at all, so he’s just like “come to the party with me.” And the girl is like well, I’m just more attracted to Carlton. So there you have it. Carlton won out over Will for like the one time ever in history. They all head to the party, and Hillary (who has been released from mall-jail) has invited the mall cop to party with them. Everything seems great for Carlton and crappy for Will (he invited a waitress from the mall to be his date, but she hasn’t shown up). But Carlton can’t really win anything, so it turns out that his date is actually the shoplifter that the mall cop was searching for. She’s also a kleptomaniac who was about to rob them out of house and home.
And then Will’s date shows up as this gorgeous, perfect, real-life but also dressed-up as Cinderella. She lives in Encino with her step-mother and step-sisters. They have a great time and Carlton is miserable. Balance is restored to the Fresh Prince’s world. But the story isn’t over yet. A group of trick-or-treaters show up after they’ve run out of candy. They’re so late because they’ve been watching Matlock. So Will just invites a random group of children into his home and tells them a “scary story” about the “Bel-Air Beast,” which is clearly a description of Carlton. Then all of the children run from the house when Carlton walks into the room. Poor guy, he must have developed some serious self-esteem issues when Will moved-in.
Halloween Lesson: Don’t pick up randos at the mall, be careful not to be mistaken for a shoplifter–and if you’re going to a 90’s Halloween Party, always remember the best costume is grapes.
Halloween is a BIG deal to the Taylor family. Tim and Al prank each other on Tool Time and the Taylors prank each other around the house. Basically, they all have to spend the entire month of October looking over their shoulders.
After Randy and Brad freak their mom out by preparing dinner a.k.a. a gory-severed head (not real, don’t worry), some creepy man shows up at the door. He hints at an awful incident that happened when he lived in the house and wants to see “the basement,” which is now Randy’s room. Brad thinks it’s just their parents trying to get even with them, but Randy is not so sure.
They decide to talk to Wilson. If Wilson knows about “the incident” then it’s true. If he does not, then their parents are playing them. While Randy and Brad are walking over to Wilson’s, Jill and Tim pay off the creepy man. It turns out that Brad and Randy have been picking on Mark AGAIN and they’re enacting revenge.
Wilson plays along and gives them this awful story about how the creepy man was long-ago suspected of killing his brother, Ezekiel. However, it’s also possible that Ezekiel simply ran away. Either way, the creepy dude was locked away in a mental institution. Wilson hints that he should still be there but Randy and Brad tell him that he’s out and trying to get a look at their basement.
Wilson even has a fake newspaper article from the “time of the incident,” suggesting that Ezekial is buried in the basement. But Al shows up at the Taylor home and sees the boys reading the newspaper. Al’s never in on any of the secrets, so he innocently identifies Larry (aka Creepy man) as “your dad’s Halloween guy,” having met him earlier at Tool Time.
So now Brad and Randy are in the revenge business, and they want to bring Al into the fold. With Al on their time, Brady and Randy start weaving a web of intricate lies. Al goes to Jill and Tim “concerned” that Randy is now terrified of the basement. In the meantime, Brad is trying to make Randy look like he’s crying by squirting Visine in his eyes. In the process, he pokes him in the eye with the bottle, so the tears quickly become real.
Brad and Randy have their parents exactly where they want them, until Al accidentally refers to the creepy man as “Larry.” So they all decide to call a truce. Jill and Tim head to a Halloween party while Randy and Brad hand out candy to trick-or-treaters. Randy opens the door to two kids dressed as Buzz Lightyear and Simba and he gives one candy bar to the “space-man” and seven to the “cute little lion” because Lion King!!!
Then Larry shows up at the house again and he’s pissed because Jill & Tim didn’t pay him the full amount for his services. He looks like he’s ready to destroy Brad and Randy over $100 that they don’t have, so they head up to the attack to look for their parents secret money stash. (But he’s playing them again.)
Jill and Tim have basically turned the attic into a haunted house. Just when Randy and Brad start to get really jumpy, Jill/Tim/Mark reveals themselves as the ultimate prank victors. And Larry walks up the attic stairs to let the boys know he wasn’t really plotting to shake them down for $100.Then Al gets them back by trapping them all in the attic. Good for Al. Al needed a win.
Halloween Lesson: The family that pranks together stays together. (Unless you’re a Brady. Then that shit is strictly forbidden.)