Hello, Spongey here
Welcome back to Goosebump-athon!
Stay out of the basement
Original Cover: It’s one of the best covers in the series. That plant hand is pretty well done, and it’’s creepy. I dig it a lot
Reprint Cover: this one is pretty funny and well done, but the original is much better. But I still dig it.
Front Tagline: “Something is waiting in the dark…”
Back Tagline: “Live plants…dead people?”
Margret and her brother casey. …brother. You heard me, are not in the best position. Their dad used to work for this college, and was a scientist dude. This isn’t the last scientist father in the series, really. So anyway, he got fired and our main characters aren’t sure why. they think he may have fucked up something. Now he works in the basement all the time, and hardly has time for the kids.
They actually respect this, and know he has to work to prove himself to that place to get back in someday, but they still are sad. However, through talks with their mom,. They see why he the way he is…
Wow, a workaholic type dad where the kids respect him? Damn, never saw that coming.
Anyway, they go into the basement to see what he is doing, but he sees them and yells the title. Two weeks later, things are calmed down. Mom is going to visit a sick relative, leaving the kids and dad on their own. While dad goes to take mom to the airport, the kid and their friend Diane head into the basement to see what is down there.
They find out it’s hot and sweaty, and has growing…plants. Big plants, and stuff. After playing around and stuff, Diane leaves. A little bit later, they head up as well, just as dad is getting home. But, it turns out Casey left his shirt down there, as he took it off in the…hot…sweaty…basement. Yes.
He goes down to get it and this next scene is one interestingly. First we get a bit focusing on Margret, as she waits for casey, and watches out for Dad. It’s tense, but then she runs to get casey when he takes too long. Then…the book backs up a bit and shows that same scene, from casey’s point of view. I liked this, and it was interesting to see! Anyway, they reunite and run up and bump into dad.
He isn’t too pissed, but warns them about playing around in there. They start to really worry about dad as he gets more distant. Margret tells mom on the phone about this, and she assures her that things will be thing, and dad just as stuff to prove to his old boss.
Margret goes to talk to Dad later, but she spots him in the kitchen, eating something in a bag. When he leaves, she sees the bag was…plant food. Dun dun dun?
She obviously gets scared by this, and tells Casey who doesn’t find it odd their dad was eating plant good cuz….uh…I have no idea. Seriously, casey can’t be that dense.
The next day, they accidently knock off dad’s hat, revealing he has leaves growing out of his head. Casey finds THIS odd. Dad finally decides to explain what is going on. He is doing some very important stuff with plants.
“I’m trying to make a plant that is part…animal!”
Well that is…interesting. As for the leaves…well he says it’s a side effect. He leaves it creepily cryptic, and while casey is fine, Margret is still worried about how dad is. Also THE PLANT FOOD EATING.,
That night, Margret is heading to the bathroom, but dad is in there. She sees him in the sink…bleeding green blood. She then looks in his room to see that it is crawling with dirty and worms. Yeah, now this getting creepy…in a good way for once,.
The next day, Dad is actually up for once. But then his old boss, Mr Martinez drops by to see what he is working on. The kids go play and everything seems fine. The next day, dad leaves to help convince the plot, and they decide to see the basement again. While inside, they find …the bosses jacket.
They get caught by dad, and he explains that boss got really hot with dad in the sweaty basement and took his jacket off…yeah. He simply forgot about it. They are fine with this.
The next day, Dad says he is finally going to pick up mom from the airport. They want to fly a kite, but the kite is in the basement. So they head in again, and find…the bosses pants.
So while he was dad in the hot basement, he took his clothes off OH GOD GET THAT IMAGE OUT!
They see a cabinet in the place, and look in it and find…human plants! Plants with hands, feet, and other stuff. This is scary enough, but they find the boss naked, bound, and gagged oh god you’re doing it on purpose stine.
Oh, and they find…DAD?! Yep, and he too Is tied up, but thankfully he has clothes on. He tells them that the Dad they’ve been with is an evil plant copy he made by accident. But they have their doubts, when the other dad comes in an claims the guy in the closet is the planty copy.
So Margret is trying to figure out who her dad is. So she figures out whoever has RED blood is real. So she sticks a knife in Closest Dad, and boom red blood. She hands him and axe
He chops the evil dad in half, putting his plant guts all over the floor.
You know-for kids!
So evil dad is dead, and good dad explains what happened. He was working on human plants, and got too into it, and while cutting himself on a slide, he made a half plant copy of him.
That sums up this book here.
So they clean out the basement, and dad apolgozies for working too hard, and promises to ease up. Boss tells him he may give him his job back to prevent evil plants from attacking again
Margret is hanging out in the basement…when a plant starts telling her “he” is her real father. This twist works as it hits you and makes you wonder what happens after. I like it.
Another two parter, yay!
The main difference is diane getting axed cuz she was really pointless. Also they changed the bosses name to Dr Marrick. Why? no idea.
Anyway, it’s a darn good episode simply for the acting of the evil plant dad. Holy crap, he is a large ham If there ever was one. He’s funny,. Creepy, and scenery chewing all at the same time. Also, good dad is played by a completely different looking actor, so the whole tense moment doesn’t work as well as it did in the book.
There are other subtle differences in what takes place when, but it doesn’t matter TOO much. There is one amazing line they add in
“are you a mad scientist?”
“I’m an ANGRY scientist!”
So anyway, they don’t find bosses pants, nor is he naked. Thank god. They find his wallet instead. In the end, the plant is killed with weed killer for censorship reasons.
The ending is the same in spirit, though they make it MANY flowers saying the father line instead of one, making it work well.
It’s actually as good as the book for once, and one of the best in the series. Pretty good, that is all.
I don’t have a specific line, but ANY line about the hot basement is this in spades. Hell, Tv Tropes lists it on GB’s getting crap past the radar page! That is All.
Useless Fact: The original cover is one of the only two not drawn by series regular, Tim Jacobus. So he did the reprint above. Also, Stine as cited this as a fave. Told you it was useless.
This is another excellent early entry. When I first read it, I enjoyed it, but as I read it more and started to analyze it, it really…grew on me. No pun intended. The characters are actually pretty interesting, and you do feel what they are going through. They have more layers than normal, and it’s pretty heartwarming at the hands. The story is original, for this series and it can be fairly creepy at point. Some bits make little sense, but it’s still a gem for the series. Plus AXE MURDER DUDE.
I like it