Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Episode 8: Doug's Bloody Buddy

This episode begins with a Scooby Doo fantasy.

As Shaggy, Doug leads the gang into the cemetery to find the Bluffington Vampire. One by one, the gang is trapped or kidnapped without Doug noticing. Finally, all alone, Doug walks into a mausoleum, saying they finally found the vampire. Then he turns around to see a monster behind him and he's surprised by who it is because he's watched enough Scooby Doo to know the five main characters, but not enough to know he should never be surprised by who it is. Anyway, we don't see who the monster really is, and Doug says "zoinks" before the fantasy ends.

At school, Connie has taken up a new hobby. She's started spreading rumors. Her first rumor of the day is that Skunky has detention through his 21st birthday. People are shocked! Annoyed, Beebe drags Connie away, saying they should go to Mr. Swirly's. Connie says she heard Mr. Swirly's was haunted. She's not even making up believable rumors.

In pointing out that it's almost Halloween, Doug mentions the school has bats hanging out in the tower. Connie says bats like staying near their master, and so someone in the school must be the Bat Master; a vampire. Connie's first guess is Ms. Crystal. Doug has a fantasy. Her desk is now a coffin and she dresses like this.

She scares the whole class, but then just starts reading Dracula to them. After the fantasy, Skunky suggests it could be Mr. Crushy (?) because they don't know anything about him. This guy is a construction worker trying to finish the school. After Skunky points him out, we see Bob White yelling at him to get rid of the bats. Mr. Crushy tells him he can't because he's scared of bats. Connie suggests they just keep watching the tower. Whoever is the Bat Master will have to go up there to check on his loyal subjects.

In band class, the band leader is yelling about how winning music wins football games. Connie takes this opportunity to start another rumor; the Bloatsburg band leader has a spy in their classroom to steal their plans for the big game.

The band leader takes this seriously and implements Plan B. He won't tell any of the students what Plan B is because he doesn't know which one is spying. Later in the episode he cancels practice to work on Plan B alone. At the end, Connie finally tells him she made up the rumor about the spy right before Plan B goes off. He rushes to stop Plan B, but it's too late. A ridiculous setup triggers and a small container pops up in front of Bloatsburg's band leader. The container opens and a bee starts flying around the band leader, causing him to wave his arms and conduct the band very poorly. It's all very silly.

After school, Doug asks Skunky if he's seen Skeeter. Instead of answering, Skunky asks Doug if he could be the Bat Master without knowing it. Doug says he'd be up in the tower with the bats if he was the Bat Master. Skunky is dumb. Also, he just spotted Skeeter walking up to the tower with the bats.

Oh fuck. Skeeter's a vampire. At Skeeter's house, Doug is playing a game where Frankenstein's monster is fighting a mummy when he asks Skeeter for some water.

While Skeeter's gone, Doug starts searching his room for evidence to support the vampire theory. In one drawer, he finds a bloody hook, a monkey's paw, and an opera cd. These aren't proof of anything. Perfectly normal.

In the cupboard under the stairs he finds a coffin. Inside the coffin he finds a delightfully contradictory "Vampire Day Planner."

In the planner Skeeter has written out the times that he had planned to bite certain people. And Patti is next! Doug leaves and rides his bike to Patti's. When he tells her, she laughs. It's too late.

Skeeter bit her yesterday. Doug's on his schedule for tonight. He's already bitten everyone else.

Oh, and this is all a dream. Of course.

Doug is so scared from his dream he falls out of his bed. Climbing back up from the floor, tiny bat versions of Patti and Skeeter scare him again.

It's another dream. Doug wakes up and falls out of bed again, then mentions that he hates double dreams.

At school the next day, Doug is trying to tell everyone that the Bat Master might be one of them. Skeeter says there's no such thing as a Bat Master.

After he walks away, Skunky pops up to tell everyone he saw Skeeter up in the tower yesterday. Connie takes Skeeter's denial of the reality of vampires as proof that he's just covering up the fact that he's the Bat Master. Connie is dumb.

At home, Doug decides he needs to ask his dad about vampires. He walks into the family dark room, and asks, "could you tell me about preternatural phenomena?"

Being as useless as ever, Phil thinks he's asking about sex. Doug quickly stops him and asks specifically about vampires. Phil continues with what he was saying about sex, but the hypothetical man and woman are now vampires. No help at all.

The next morning everyone at school is convinced that Skeeter is a vampire. Doug denies the rumor and asks for proof. Connie says he's blue, the color of the undead. Doesn't fuck my theory if all the kids are crazy like Doug, which they clearly are. Roger says Skeeter could only be as smart as he is if he was 200 years old. Willie points out that Skeeter has a bandage on his finger, and then says vampires wrap themselves in bandages. When Doug points out he's thinking of mummies, Willie is shocked to learn that Skeeter is a mummy too.

Connie knows she just made this shit up. Why is she actually believing it instead of just laughing at the whole school? Ignoring all this shit, Beebe walks up to show off her new jacket that's wired for cable tv. She's trying to make nouveau riche Roger jealous, but he shrugs her off. He just bought all the latest anti-vampire stuff to protect them from Skeeter. Connie looks in the bag and pulls out something one of you assholes better get me for my birthday.

I will provide pictures. You will be disappointed.

Anyway, Roger got an awesome camera so he could look at what Skeeter's hiding in his locker. After mostly normal shit, Roger sees a small pile of dirt at the bottom of the locker. He reasons that it's from Skeeter's homeland so he can sleep in his locker. Unbeatable logic. Doug says it's from his science experiment about dirt clods. Then the camera spots a bag of Bat Chow. This causes Doug to have a fantasy about Vicious Blood Sucking Vampire Cola. Skeeter is eating some Bat Chow.

And he needs something to drink, of course!

It makes perfect sense.

After band practice was cancelled, Doug runs back to Roger and Connie because he FINALLY realized the most obvious evidence against the argument that Skeeter is a vampire; vampires have to sleep all day. When he tells them, Roger dismisses that as a bullshit made up by vampires to fool everyone. Connie tells him to get on the bus; the whole school can't be wrong. This is how conspiracy theories work. It's fantastic, and I'm glad Doug isn't so gung ho about it. He may be a delusional ball of anxiety, but he won't hear your shit about chemtrails. At least...not at first.

At lunch, the entire cafeteria falls silent when Skeeter enters.

He says hello and does his trademark honk. Everyone flees.

At home, Doug is reading about vampires and finally accepts that his best friend is a vampire. He wonders if this means he can't be friends with him anymore. He has a fantasy where everyone in town runs away at the sight of them riding their bikes. It actually seems kind of nice. After the fantasy, the doorbell rings and Doug answers it to find a mob.

Roger informs him that they took a vote. From now on, everybody stays clear of Skeeter. Pretty awesome that they took a vote without Doug, right? How nice of them. Doug asks them why. "What did Skeeter ever do to anybody?" Roger shows him what Skeeter did! Skeeter sent everybody invitations to a Halloween party! What a bastard! Only a vampire would do such an evil thing as that! While the crowd is explaining to Doug the absurd, the phone rings and Theda tells Doug it's Skeeter. Roger tells him if he talks to Skeeter, nobody can talk to him as a matter of public safety. After too little thought, Doug says, "tell him I just stepped out," and leaves with the idiot crowd.

To counter the evil Bat Master Skeeter, Roger has an anti-vampire party at the same time. Everyone goes to Roger's party. Doug has dressed as an especially scary jar of paste.

Roger goes around his party handing out garlic, as wearable hoops or as snacks. This party sucks, but it's delicious. Meanwhile at Skeeters, Mr. Valentine is not so delicate about asking Skeeter where his friends are.

Back at Roger's party, Doug imagines what his life would be like if he never sees Skeeter again. First, playing that Frankenstein's monster vs. mummy video game will be boring. Because it was much more exciting in that dream where Skeeter watched him play and then fetched him some water. Second, he'd have to play ping pong alone. That means hitting the ball across the table, then walking over there to collect the ball and hit it across the table again.

I don't know why he just doesn't play. It's not like kids are obligated to play certain things whether they have the required number of participants or not. Also, Doug has other friends. He'd just start hanging out with Chalky, Patti, Roger, Beebe, Connie, Al and Moo, Fentruck, or Skunky more. Oh, another thing Doug will just do alone instead of not doing? Photo-booths.

This is just sad.

After the fantasy, Doug says he can't dump his best friend. Connie asks if his best friend is worth dying for. Doug points out that her rumor about talking gerbils in the science lab was false. Maybe she's wrong about Skeeter too. She says there's too much proof. Everyone agrees.

Love three-headed Charlie Brown. Top notch costume.

Patti, who never really fell for the rumor to begin with, finally joins Doug's side and argues in favor of Skeeter. Doug decides to leave and just ask Skeeter about the whole vampire thing. He asks if anyone is with him, but leaves alone. Roger takes the opportunity to whip up the crowd to stop Doug. They start chasing after Doug and Patti starts chasing after them.

Doug rushes down into Skeeter's room to find a very lonely, depressed Skeeter. Skeeter gets excited, and Doug tells him everyone thinks he's a vampire. He doesn't get to reply before the mob rushes down to his room and finds him dressed as a vampire. Roger tells everyone to make crosses with their index fingers and chant "melt." When Skeeter doesn't melt, Roger says someone must not be doing the thing. Crowds are dumb. Without saying a word, Skeeter walks over to the wall and flips a switch that makes fake bats fall from the ceiling. He is brilliant. Roger is terrified. Patti finally catches up and says, "you're not a real vampire are you, Skeeter?" Skeeter laughs at them and asks if his costume is that good. Connie says it's because of her big mouth. She started a stupid rumor. Skunky asks why he was up in the tower with the bats. Skeeter says, "Mr. Crushy's afraid of them. So for a science project, I found the bats a new home."

I like that he says it's for a science project. That's not a science project. That's just being a nice person. Skeeter dealt with a pest problem without killing the pests, and he did it to help someone he doesn't really know. Fuck you assholes. All of you can eat shit and die.

Doug's crazy in this episode, sure, but it's really more about mob mentality. Crowds easily believe and do some crazy shit. It makes sense that Doug is so resistant to the crowd, but not surprising when he joins them, however briefly. Doug's crazy on his own. When the crowd starts acting crazy, being rational is the new crazy. But then Doug is still a kid in the awkward ages, striving to fit in. So yeah, he'll try to shun his best friend to maintain the rest of his friendships.