Friday, January 27, 2012

Episode 44, Part 2: Doug's Mail Order Mania

Why is Porkchop dressed like this?

Because Doug is working on his sculpture for the Tri-County Art Festival.

Doug is easily distracted from his work when his mom gets the mail. I assume he hates sculpting because he is really excited about the mail. Theda completely ignores him and gives Porkchop his mail, because of course that happened.

Dogs send each other mail all the time. Doug asks his mom if there was any mail for him, as we all did when we were dumb kids that thought mail was exciting even if it wasn't our birthday. She hands him an envelope, saying he can open it if he wants. It's just junk mail.

"Dear Occupant,
You are already a semi-finalist in the Ponzi Publishing Sweepstakes, making you eligible to win...

Apparently Ponzi Publishing has more money than there could ever actually be, and they're just giving it away. Doug thinks he's going to be a zillionaire. I know what you're thinking too; "Ponzi!?"

Don't worry. This is Peter P. Ponzi, not that Charles Ponzi fellow everyone likes talking about so much. I'm sure it's just a coincidence. Look, all you have to do to win this sweepstakes is finish this puzzle and send it in.

What's the harm in that? Theda tries to get him to realize what his chances of winning are but he dismisses it because he's almost finished the puzzle. He calls the puzzle really hard and asks, "how many people do you think can figure this stuff out?" With that, Doug has a fantasy of the people at Ponzi Publishing.

It's just two really old men groaning about how no one has been able to finish the puzzle in the 42 years they've run the sweepstakes. One of them wants to quit the contest but the other refuses and then finds Doug's entry. Finally, they have a winner and they start dancing around to celebrate. It's hard to believe a sane person would think a simple word jumble would be so difficult that no one was able to crack it in 42 years, and then in an afternoon an eleven year old kid did it.

So Doug mails in the puzzle and gets back to work on his sculpture. Potential zillionaires have to do something to pass the time. At the end of the week, Doug finally gets a letter from Ponzi Publishing.

Pretty badass! He made it to the SUPER SEMI FINALS!!!!!!!!! The nine exclamation points are proof that this is a legitimate contest. This Ponzi Publishing really has their shit together. Doug now has to do another puzzle and send in a $25 fee, because that's how real contests work.

Unfortunately, Doug doesn't have $25. He quickly runs to his mom to ask her for the money. She says $25 is a lot of money, and again tries to hint at the fact that it's a scam, saying, "sometimes those contests aren't what they seem to be." A little dejected, Doug decides to see if he can do the puzzle anyway. "For fun."

Doug says this puzzle is even harder than the first. Why is Doug so fucking stupid in this episode? Every now and then he just encounters a situation that turns him into a complete idiot that can't be helped. He's way too proud of himself when he finishes the puzzle, but says it was fun while it lasted and gets back to work on the sculpture. He doesn't have $25. He can't compete in the super semi-finals. He starts chiseling away on the sculpture, but he's too distracted. He keeps looking back at the puzzle until he has a fantasy.

In this fantasy, this giant ship plows across the land and drops anchor in front of Doug's house. The man tells Doug it's his ship, and after 11.5 years, it's finally come in. Money is flying out of the containers on the ship the entire time. When you have all the money in the world, it doesn't matter if the wind is constantly carrying it away. The man on the ship asks Doug if he sent in his $25 fee. When Doug says he didn't, they immediately pull up the anchor and leave. This seems like a fantasy that might help Doug come back to reality, but it isn't. It doesn't make him question the idea that someone would need $25 to give him all the money that's ever been printed or ever will be printed. Instead, it makes him determined to get that $25.

After the fantasy, Doug is counting his change and finds he doesn't have enough. He asks Porkchop to loan him the remaining $9.74. Naturally, Porkchop agrees and reaches into his back pocket to get out his wallet.

Since Porkchop isn't wearing pants, it's a bit unsettling to think about where he's keeping that wallet. Also, Porkchop is a dog and doesn't have any money. When he opens his wallet, a fly flies out. If your dog has a wallet, and you expect it to have money, and you actually ask to borrow that money (instead of just saying, "why does this dog have money," and taking the money), then you are definitely an insane person. After the crazy option, Doug tries to bring Skeeter in on the deal.

Skeeter is reluctant at first. Doug promises to split the winnings with him. Half of a zillion dollars is some other made up number! Probably a jillion dollars! Is zillion more or less than jillion? Whatever. You can have half of it all, Skeeter! Skeeter says he read somewhere that you have a better chance of being kidnapped by aliens than winning one of those things. Doug pulls out the original letter with the impossible winnings on it and hypnotizes Skeeter into helping him out. Unfortunately, after counting up Skeeter's money, they are still $2.87 short. Skeeter is getting half of all the money ever for contributing $6.87. It's a good deal, but they still need more money.

Doug starts scouring the house looking for loose change. He finds some under the couch, some in the kitchen, and two pennies in his penny loafers he never wears. During his search, Judy reminds him he's supposed to enter his sculpture in the art festival today, but he says he doesn't have time for that.

He's finished the house and has moved on to the yard with a metal detector. He only needs 5 cents and the metal detector is starting to go off.

Worried that the ants might take the nickel into their vast underground lair, Doug dives at them, forcing them to drop the nickel and flee. Because all of this is normal ant behavior. Those ants need that money to buy the queen a foot bath.

The next few days, Doug and Skeeter do nothing but wait for the mailman. One day, Patti, Beebe, and Chalky ride up and invite them to go to the Honkerburger. Doug says they are "kinda short on cash." Skeeter says, "yeah man, we're broke."

Beebe says, "broke? Broke? What is 'broke'?"

This is a classic moment of total lunacy. Someone asked me what episode this happened in a couple of weeks ago and I couldn't remember. I hadn't watched this one since I was a kid. How does Beebe not know what this means? This can't be the first time she's heard this colloquialism. She may be rich, but in her group of friends she's the only one that is rich. This can't be the first time her friends haven't had the cash to do something. Also, she can't figure it out from the context? Doug just said they had no money and in agreeing with him, Skeeter said they're broke. Beebe is stupid. Chalky says they'll explain what "broke" is on the way and they leave.

Right after they leave, the mailman comes. Doug and Skeeter rush to open the latest letter from Ponzi Publishing. It congratulates Doug for reaching the Grand Super Bonus Finals. Skeeter is excited that they are finalists, but Doug points out they want $50 this time. Time to give up, right? You had to steal a nickel from ants and your dog has no money. Where are you going to get $50? Better to just realize it's a scam now than to go through the trouble of losing more money...

Nah, fuck that. What's $50 when you will most likely be winning the totally real amount of one zillion dollars? So they try to sell lemonade for $50 a glass. Skeeter drinks all the soda in the fridge so they can turn in the cans for the five cent deposit. Actually, here's a list of what they did to get money.

These kids are idiots. This is the second time they've come up with the worst money-making schemes. Seriously, though...walk gerbils? What are they even thinking? Deliver soap? What soap? Who is ordering this soap? There are two items at the bottom of the list that aren't crossed off. "Judy" and "savings bond." Doug's grandma gave him the savings bond. It's supposed to be for his college education. So it's Judy then.

And Judy laughs and laughs at the idea. Doug promises to give her half of the winnings and she still says no. She tells him to forget this stupid contest and asks, "wouldn't you rather be an artist? It's so much more...artistic!" Angry, Doug imagines himself as a starving artist, because a zillion dollars has made him forget that he actually does want to be a comic book artist...

Porkchop is playing the piano (because Starving-Artist Doug still isn't hungry enough to eat dog meat) while Doug chisels away at a chunk of stone. The wood stove fizzles out (because Starving-Artist Doug lives in a previous century) and Porkchop gets up to throw his music into it to keep the fire going so they don't freeze to death. Doug stops him, saying it's his turn to burn a masterpiece. He grabs his unfinished sculpture and says, "cursed be the day I ever started on this miserable path," before throwing it into the stove. Out of wood for the stove? Just use this chunk of marble. It'll burn clean and keep you warm. He looks out the window to the casino across the street where he can see Zillionaire Doug playing roulette.

Zillionaire Doug puts a savings bond on the table and says, "50 to win." He wins. It's an easy game.

After the fantasy, Doug is getting the savings bond from his father.

Phil tries to get Doug to realize how stupid he's being without outright saying it. He points out the bond has been accruing interest for 11.5 years, and if he trades it in now he's throwing that away on a gamble. Doug says it's not a gamble because he's a grand super bonus finalist. Phil asks how many people are grand super bonus finalists and Doug says he doesn't know. A couple? Phil thinks Doug sees his point and finally hands over the savings bond, confident his idiot son will do the right thing.

Completely missing Phil's point, Doug rushes to the post office. He has to get there before it closes to mail it today to meet the deadline. The door at the post office is locked so he starts banging on the door until one of the generic worker characters opens up for him. Doug tells him he has to have that letter post-marked today to meet the deadline. The guy says, "oh, one of these? Sure kid!" Then he turns and says, "yo, Hiram, got another Ponzi puzzle."

So generic pink worker guy is Hiram? Anyway, Hiram walks by with that big cart and the other guy put's Doug's Ponzi puzzle in it. Doug asks if all of those envelopes in the cart are for the Ponzi Publishers Sweepstakes and he says they are. They get them every week. Doug says, "but I'm a grand super bonus finalist." They guy replies, "yeah, kid. You and a zillion others." Everyone in Bluffington is falling for this shit. It's sad.

At home, Doug is sitting on the front porch talking to Porkchop about how everyone was right. He never really had a chance. Theda walks over, announces that Doug got a letter, and gives Porkchop and Doug their mail. Porkchop is still getting mail. Doug thanks her and puts the letter down without looking at it. Theda asks if he's going to open it but he says he's sick of mail. Judy tells him to open it and he quickly relents on his "fuck mail" attitude. This letter isn't from Ponzi Publishing. It's from the Tri-County Art Festival. His sculpture "Dog Crossing the Delaware" won third prize. Doug is confused since he didn't even enter the festival and Judy reveals she entered it for him.

Try-county? Try-county? What is "try-county"?

Doug finishes up saying he learned that get-rich-quick schemes are tempting but unreliable. It's better to stick with what you're good at. He never learned that this was simply a scam and he's just a sucker. He still thinks this was a legitimate contest with impossible odds.

As Doug is finishing up this journal entry, a weird thing happens on tv. Porkchop wins the Canine Sweepstakes!

What Canine Sweepstakes? Apparently, that was the piece of mail he just got. He opened it, got excited and ran off while Doug was getting excited about winning third place. Porkchop's prize for this sweepstakes is a zillion bones. Because Doug just had to end on an insane point to prove that sweepstakes do have winners. They aren't just scams. It also explains why Porkchop's wallet was empty. He used all his money on the Canine Sweepstakes.

This episode gives us a little insight into the hands-off approach to parenting Phil and Theda take to raising Doug. Instead of saying, "son, that shit is a scam," and throwing the puzzles away, they let him go through with it so he learns the hard way. He's always learning things the hard way. This method of learning certainly works for some things with kids, but I get the feeling this is all they've ever done with Doug, with the exception of making a kite. That was a straight-forward "this is how you make a kite and anything else is garbage" lesson. Everything else is a "fuck it, let him get burned" lesson.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Episode 44, Part 1: Doug En Vogue

Doug is thinking about fashion. Some people are really into it. He just wears the same old clothes.

These three are reading Teen Fad. Doug asks, "whatcha reading?" because he's nice and shows interest in others. Beebe replies, "Teen Fad magazine. Nothing you'd be interested in," because she doesn't like nosy kids ruining her magazine time with her friends. Doug wonders what it would be like to be a trend-setter. Doug says he'd like to be like Dylan Farnum. He's the trend-setter from a popular television show. Before Doug tells us the name of the show, some girl we've never seen before yells from her house, "HEY, EVERYONE! TEEN HEART STREET IS ON!" Everyone in the park runs home, Doug included.

Judy catches Doug watching it while eating one of the two bowls of popcorn he made. She calls it trash and mocks him for watching it. In the show, two girls have a quick argument that leaves one of them crying alone in a high school hallway. Judy keeps criticizing the show, and when she says that Dylan Farnum has no taste, he walks onscreen to comfort the crying girl.

"I rest my case."

Please note the school's water fountain has an ice machine and cups. All the schools I went to only had water fountains with discarded chewing gum or trash in them. I feel cheated.

Obviously Doug notices Dylan Farnum is wearing the same clothes he always wears. He immediately jumps to the conclusion that he is a trend-setter and has a fantasy.

In the fantasy, a woman sitting on a round bed with "Shack De Chic" on the wall behind her says, "fashion flash!" She then starts talking about a new popular look. This is another tv show fantasy for Doug. The woman says everyone is wearing this new look, from the fashion shows... the hottest downtown club! I like Doug's idea that runway models all wear the same outfits. Like they're just a showcase of what one outfit looks like on several people. There's a few clips of various people wearing Doug's trademark clothes. The show's host gives us a look into the trend-setter that started the whole thing.

After walking by these guys, Chalky says hey to Doug and Beebe tells him he's looking good. The show's host calls Doug the "King of Style" and the fantasy ends.

Doug says he's not going to say anything about it. He's just going to wait for people to notice. As he's walking into school, he walks past the goons. They are dressed like him. Chalky says, "hey, Doug." Beebe says, "looking good!"

It's exactly like his fantasy. Doug pauses a moment and says, "this is weird." Yes it is, Doug. He goes to the goons and brings up Teen Heart Street. Chalky walks over and says, "I see you're wearing the Dylan Farnum look."

"What do you mean 'the Dylan Farnum look?'"

He points out that this is what he always wears and no one believes him.

In Phys Ed, Doug and Patti are playing 1-on-1 basketball, because the rest of the class is...? I don't know where they are. Doug couldn't be bothered to let us know why they have the entire gym to themselves. Patti tells Doug it's a good look for him and he gets a little upset. It's not a look for him. It's just how he always dresses. She says, "if you say so, Doug."

He looks depressed here because she is kicking his ass. Also, she hasn't noticed that he wears the same shit every day. He probably thinks this means she doesn't like him that much, but he doesn't realize that it just means she hasn't noticed what a weird knob he is yet.

After phys ed, Doug complains about this to Skeeter. Skeeter also didn't notice that Doug always wears the same clothes. He claims he doesn't really pay attention to that stuff.

After school, Doug has invited Larry, Skeeter, Beebe, Chalky, Connie, Patti, Boomer and Roger over to his house to prove to them that he's always worn the Dylan Farnum look.

Roger's bones seem to have recovered enough for him to finally wear shorts comfortably. So, with everyone growing impatient, Doug finally reveals his proof.

Without the pointer, none of these idiots would know where to look to see the proof. Beebe is thoroughly annoyed that Doug dragged them over to his house to show off his Dylan Farnum collection. It's not clear why he thought this was incontrovertible proof instead of photographs. Where would Doug ever get pictures of himself anyway? I bet his dad might know.

Everyone leaves his room. Most of them don't say anything. Connie says he doesn't have to dress like Dylan Farnum every day. Doug is more annoyed than ever because now he thinks everyone thinks he's just trying to be Dylan Farnum.

Of course, this leads to a fantasy. In the fantasy, Connie drops a book she's trying to get out of her locker and says, "oh, shoot!" Doug walks over, puts his arm around her and asks if she's okay. "Do you wanna talk about it?"

She screams and yells, "Patti help!" Patti walks over and Connie tells her Doug's acting weird again. Patti tells her to just ignore him because he thinks he's Dylan Farnum. They walk off, leaving Doug alone.

But he continues talking to Connie as if he's still got his arm around her. As if that wasn't crazy enough, the camera pulls out to reveal that Doug is now just Dylan Farnum's puppet.

What? This has to be one of his craziest fantasies.

Tired of people thinking he's trying to be Dylan Farnum, Doug decides it's time for some new clothes. At the store, the salesman makes him try on the hippie look.

Doug says his dad used to wear this. It isn't original. Next up? The rap look!

If I was a rapper, I'd absolutely wear a big medallion that simply said "rap" on it. Doug says he doesn't want to look like a rap star. He wants to look different. That's when the salesman busts out the disco look.

As you can see, Doug is not pleased. It's amazing that he got as far as putting on each outfit entirely before he expressed his distaste for them. Two other salesmen come over and start arguing with the first salesman about what Doug should get until he finally walks away from them, right into another man that promises to solve his problem. Doug just has to answer a few questions.

"Do you like the mountains or the beach?"
"Have you ever jaywalked?"
"I guess so."
"Would you say you are easy to love?"
"What would you do if you had a million dollars?"
"But I haven't answered your last question yet."

Luckily, this guy is actually trying to suggest clothes for Doug, and the creepy overtones of the last two questions are nothing to worry about. The guy suggests the Dylan Farnum look. Frustrated with everyone in the store, he grabs the three outfits he tried on and leaves.

In the park, Doug is wearing his new look while kicking a soccer ball at a fence.

He's angrily saying,  "take that, Dylan Farnum! You and your stupid look!" Oh, here's the fence he's kicking the ball at.

Not crazy.

Judy comes over to tell him dinner is ready. She asks, "why are you dressed like that?"

"I just wanted to wear something nobody ever wore before so nobody could say I was copying anything."

Judy says, "I hate to disappoint you, but they call it the schizo look."

How appropriate. Doug takes this news very poorly. He throws a tantrum, kicking and hitting the ground while screaming and yelling, "I give up!"


Judy asks him why he cares so much. He says it's because he didn't copy anyone! She asks him if he really thinks he's the only person in the world that ever wore a green vest. We're all copying someone. No one else gives a shit though. Doug gets it. Finally.

The next day at school, Doug proudly walks up to the front doors and gets everyone's attention. He makes an important announcement that he's wearing his regular clothes, and if that means everyone thinks he's trendy, then that's just the way it is. Annoyed, Beebe asks him what he's talking about. He's wearing last week's look!

It's hard to imagine he didn't immediately notice that people had stopped dressing like him, but once they pointed it out to him, he jumps for joy. It's ridiculous.

Ok, so to recap, literally everyone everywhere is being trendy, but Doug hates the idea of being trendy and doesn't want anyone to think he's a trendy douchebag. Is there anyone Doug likes or is it only stupid for him to be trendy? It's okay for everyone else, but Doug is better than them? They should know that Dylan Farnum stole that look from him. He wore it first! He is the trend-setter! Not a follower! I'm sure he'll feel the same way about Dylan Farnum stealing Skeeter's look too, though I'm guessing that's an embellishment by Doug to make it look like the producers of Teen Heart Street are spying on his school. Because Doug is a paranoid schizophrenic.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Episode 43: Doug's Halloween Adventure

Skeeter begins this episode with a story. A scary story.

It's about Baron von Hecklehoffer. The Baron fell in love with a beautiful maiden. To win her love he built a mansion for her.

According to Skeeter, it took him 17 years to build this mansion. Luckily the woman didn't die or get ugly in that time. After their wedding, the Baron picked her up to carry her across the threshold. It was the first time either of them would enter the mansion. Both of them fell to their deaths right through the doorway. The Baron forgot to put in a floor. Quite a thing to overlook for 17 years.

So that's how Bloodstone Manor was cursed. After years of abandonment, some hooded guy no one has ever seen purchased the mansion and made a ride out of it at Funky Town. I'm guessing this story came from a commercial that Skeeter mistook for a documentary. Doug is terrified. Skeeter is excited. They're going to the grand opening of the new ride tonight.

Later Doug tells us that Halloween used to be his favorite holiday, but this year is different because Skeeter is making him go to Funky Town. While putting on his costume, Doug says he's hoping he won't be too scared because he's going as Race Canyon. How could he be scared of anything like a silly haunted house while dressed as the great Race Canyon? Naturally there's a fantasy involved with this.

Race Canyon is climbing a mountain to get to Bloodstone Manor. He's climbing up the rocky side in spite of the fact that there is a clear path that leads to the front door. Halfway up, some gargoyles attack him. He uses his whip to slam one into the other before he continues his climb. At the top of the mountain, the house transforms into a giant ghoul.

Race is terrified. Before he can do anything, Doug (dressed as Race Canyon) wraps a whip around the ghoul's neck, makes a pun, and pulls the monster off the mountain. Race Canyon thanks him and compliments his clothes.

After the fantasy, Doug goes downstairs to leave, but Judy sees him and has to mock him. She asks if he's dressed up to go "twick-or-tweating," because people only put on costumes because they are still kids that go trick-or-treating. He informs her that he's actually going to Bloodstone Manor. She's a little shocked, saying she's heard it's terrifying. Since tonight is the grand opening and she's sitting at home alone watching tv, you have to wonder who told her anything at all about Bloodstone Manor. Right after Doug tells her it's just a ride and asks how scary it could be, a commercial for the ride comes on the tv. The ghoul from the Race Canyon fantasy narrates it. The commercial sucks, but it's nice to see a basis for the giant ghoul in Doug's earlier fantasy. He's probably been seeing these commercials throughout October. Still, there's nothing in the ad that's particularly scary, yet it scares Doug out of his "pfft, it's just a ride" attitude. He returns to the Race Canyon fantasy.

This time the ghoul yells at Race and Doug and they both fall backwards. Race grabs onto the edge of the cliff while Doug just falls to his death.

Skeeter answers his door to find Doug holding two bags and asking to go trick-or-treating.

Seriously? Commercials are supposed to make you want to do something. Well done, Funky Town. Skeeter is disappointed. He says there's going to be huge lines for the ride if they don't get there early. Skeeter asks if they're too old for trick-or-treating. Doug says you're never too old for free candy. Can't argue with that. The trick-or-treating gets embarrassing when they mistakenly go to Connie's house.

Doug says they're doing it for Dale and they quickly leave. What's going to be worse is the next time they see Connie, she'll have realized they embarrassed themselves because they didn't realize it was her house. She'll have had time to wonder why they don't know where she lives, if they are indeed her friends. Everyone still knows where Patti used to live, but where does Connie live? She'll cry herself to sleep tonight.

Anyway, Skeeter notices it's 8:00, which means they've only got 2 hours before Funky Town closes. Doug wonders how much longer he could stall and notes that they've already been around the neighborhood twice. Pathetic.

Next, Roger tries to scare them with the headless routine.

He repeats "who chopped off my head" a few times while Doug and Skeeter grin and stare. Doug says, "hey, Roger." Roger turns around and says, "I told ya we'd scare the pants off 'em." His friends laugh and come out of hiding. Roger then mocks their costumes. He asks if they are a hobo and a bathtub. Skeeter points out that he's a spaceship from the Spacemunks video game, and Doug is Race Canyon. Roger has a good laugh at this and calls Doug "Race Chicken." His goons decide to test Doug's bravery by daring him to be the first person to roll Mr. Bone's house in toilet paper. Doug says they can't do that, and they all make chicken noises and dance around pretending to be chickens.

After they leave Roger, they spot a Funky Town shuttle and start running for it. While running, Doug wonders, "how was I going to cross the Threshold of Death when I didn't even have the nerve to t.p. a house?" What a shitty question. You're right, Doug. Just go home and think about what you haven't done.

They catch up to the shuttle and Doug refuses to get on. He apologizes to Skeeter as the shuttle speeds away, causing a wind that carries Doug's Race Canyon hat with it. Doug accepts this because his cowardice proves he's no Race Canyon anyway. Skeeter says they can just go some other time. And then Patti and her dad pull up in their van.

She tells them she's going to a costume party at someone's house and correctly guesses their obvious costumes. Patti says he'd be the spitting image of Race Canyon if he was a little taller. This renews Doug's confidence, and potentially turned him into a furry. It made him revisit the Race Canyon fantasy as well.

Except there is no Race Canyon this time. It's just Doug and Patti. Doug kicks the doors in, walks inside and says, "beat it." The ghosts and monsters leave the house as fast as they can.

Doug's confidence terrifies them.

After the fantasy, Doug confidently asks Patti for a ride. Doug and Skeeter get in the van without waiting for an answer. Of course she's not late to her party, and no, her dad doesn't have anything better to do!

Dropping them off, Patti says she'd never go on the ride after what happened to those two guys. And Doug's confidence melts away as Mr. Mayonnaise explains that two guys disappeared while they were testing the ride. Two guys went on the ride and all that came out was their shoes. Who told them this story? Skeeter. He says it's just rumors, "like that stuff about the maniac." According to Skeeter, people say the hooded guy still lives in the mansion.

At 8:30, Doug and Skeeter finally get in line for Bloodstone Manor. The line is really, really long. At 9:45, they are finally at the front.

Roger skips everyone to join them. Unfortunately, some douche tells them the park is now closing. Skeeter protests, pointing out they still have 15 minutes, and the guy tells them to go to the gift shop before he closes the doors. The entire line disperses immediately leaving Doug, Skeeter and Roger. The doors to Bloodstone Manor open up for no apparent reason and Roger taunts them to sneak in.

Inside, the ghoul appears in a framed painting, welcomes them and says he has a special treat for trespassers. He says, "as you can see, there's no way out of this room, except straight down!" They see the huge pit with spike-covered walls and start to panic. The front wall, the one with the doors (aka a way out of the room the ghoul seems to have forgotten), starts to move toward them. It's pushing them into the pit. Doug is the first person to take the plunge.

Of course the pit just has a hard clear surface covering it. A hidden doorway on the other side of the room opens and the ghoul, standing in the doorway, tells them there's no turning back now. They just walk across. Roger is terrified and runs across after them.

They find a dining room and the ghoul greets them from a painting again. It's like he's supposed to be a moving painting, but shit like this happens regularly.

A moving painting not bound by the confines of the frame.

The ghoul tells them it's dinner time and instructs them to sit down. He has prepared a small salad for them.

The arms on the chairs grab them and the floor beneath them opens up. They are dropped onto slides.

The slides drop them into a coffin-shaped roller-coaster car. Finally, they have reached the part of this whole thing that is actually a fucking ride.

It's also a lawsuit waiting to shut this whole place down, but we'll let the kid with the broken leg or the fat guy that got stuck deal with that.

The ride starts and Doug and Skeeter are having a lot of fun. Roger is apparently terrified. There are projected ghosts and monsters everywhere. A giant yellow moon laughs at them maniacally. Suddenly, the ride stops and more lights come on.

Skeeter notices it's 10:00. The park is closed. Roger starts to panic. Doug and Skeeter get up to find a way out and tell Roger they'll find someone to get the ride going again.

Outside, Skeeter sees a phone and tries to use it to call someone to help get Roger out of the ride. It's not actually a phone though. It's just the controls of the ride. While trying to figure out how to dial, Skeeter accidentally activates the ride. A huge projection of the ghoul appears above them to tell them they will not be so lucky next time. They run over to a coffin-car and find Roger's shoes. Then they hear Roger yell, "help me, somebody!" They are about to run away when they hear a scream. Doug says they have to go back to find Roger. Finding an employee would've been a better idea, but whatever.

They find their way back to where the ride stopped and Roger is nowhere to be seen. Wandering around, Doug almost falls into a hole. He wonders if Roger might have fallen in and Skeeter looks down and says, "it could be miles." Skeeter is so smart. Nothing gets by him. Not to be outdone, Doug remembers the pit at the entrance and how it was just a trick. And though there's absolutely no reason for him to prove this, he walks right out over the hole...

...which is actually just a very deep hole. Skeeter grabs his hand, but this just causes both of them to fall. They fall into a room full of props and controls for the ride. Why is there a deep hole leading to this room? Why not? What are you, a lawyer?

In the room, they find a big sarcophagus which Doug promptly opens to find the ghoul. Believing it to be fake, Doug scoffs and says, "they sure make these things look real." Then it grabs him on the shoulder.

The ghoul asks them what they are doing here. After Doug says they were looking for their friend, the ghoul says he's not here and tells them to leave. As Skeeter is dragging Doug away, Roger says, "come on! This way!" They go by a mirror and Doug hallucinates a little.

Not wanting to be a chicken, Doug starts to change his mind. His reflection morphs from a chicken into a 10 foot tall Race Canyon. Doug marches up to the ghoul and says they aren't leaving without Roger. The ghoul leads them to the security room. On one of the monitors, Roger is outside telling his goons to be ready to cream Doug and Skeeter with eggs when they come out. Doug asks how Roger got outside and the ghoul rewinds the tape. It shows Roger sitting in the coffin car laughing about the fact that they think he's a chicken. He takes off his shoes and leaves them in the car. The tape also shows him outside, laughing at them when they find his shoes. They are pissed. The ghoul laughs at their plight, but he has a plan to help them.

Outside, Roger's goons are freezing and tired of waiting for Doug and Skeeter. But suddenly, there they are.

They're enormous ghosts, but it's definitely them. A shot inside shows the ghoul playing camera man while Doug and Skeeter hang in robes and play their part. This park is amazing. How are they projecting shit like this? Roger and the goons start to run away but Doug stops them.

He accuses them of being chicken. They start clucking to agree with Doug. They don't want to be haunted by Doug forever. What misery that would be. Roger says he'll do anything to avoid such a fate, so Doug says, "it was rotten of you to t.p. all those houses." Whimpering and cowering in fear, Roger and the goons agree to clean up all the houses. The ghoul has one more thing for Roger too. He appears between Doug and Skeeter and yells, "next time, you might not be so lucky!" They laugh and laugh and laugh.

So that's that. The ghoul walks them to the exit. He gives Doug his Race Canyon hat, which causes Doug to finally question the guy. How did he get the hat? Who is he?

The ghoul turns to them and says, "just call me Baron von Hecklehoffer!" He starts spinning so fast that he basically becomes a tiny, black tornado.

The tornado flies away and the ghoul is gone. Doug suggests they just go home and they slowly walk out of the park. Once outside, they run as fast as they can. Because obviously, what the fuck?

This episode is Scooby Doo by a crazy person. In Scooby Doo, there's always a logical explanation for the monster and his crazy effects, even if there's no logical explanation for the presence Batman and the Harlem Globetrotters. Or the talking dog. But Doug doesn't even bring Porkchop into this one, and he communicates at least as well as, if not better than Scooby. Anyway, since we have a narrator that has trouble distinguishing reality from fantasy, we have this story where Doug and Skeeter are helped by an apparent ghost. If we heard the story from someone else, preferably someone smarter and more reliable than Skeeter, it would be boring, but the ghoul would be a tired security guard and the massive projections of Doug and Skeeter would be the two of them fighting over the microphone for the park's speaker system. Doug doesn't have logical explanations for the impossible, because nothing is impossible when you look at yourself in the mirror and see a chicken.