Hello, Spongey here.
…Yeah, I have some explaining to do. In September of 2012, I started reviewed the Goosebumps Horrorland Series. It is December of 2015 and I only covered the first 6 books. ..Yeah, I have some catching up to do. I mean, Arc 1 has 12 Books, Arc 2 goes up to 19. and we have the 6 books, a one shot book, and about 11 or so Most Wanted books as of this writing.
Why has it taken me so damn long to get to this? Well, I started writing the review at one point, but it got lost eventually, and in the shuffle of moving , I just kind of dropped it. I almost decided to just drop the reviews and do a retrospective, but then finally, I decided to go back to the reviews.
Things are more convenient for me, so I can do these. So when we left off, we were about halfway through this thing. We got a ton of catching up to do and the with the movie now a thing, it seems like the perfect time to go back to this.
There isn’t anything special about this one. This is around when they dropped the promise of being connected to other books. This one does have a plot similar to other books but it’s mostly original. Is it any good?
Let’s find out.
This is, My Friends Call Me Monster
The book opens with our main character, Micheal, and his friends sneaking into a teacher’s house. They are here to drop off a black cat. See, the teacher is superstitious so cruelly scaring her with a random cat will accomplish something!
“My friends call me monster”
…That was fast. They call him that because he’s a big dude with a temper. Also because they need foreshadowing. They decide to drop the cat off in the basement, but on their way up, they hear a freaky sound.
“TWO WEEKS EARLIER”
…Oh, we’re doing that again. It makes as much as sense as it did in Revenge of the Living Dummy, but this one isn’t as bad.
We are properly introduced to our other characters. DeWayne is the male friend who is slightly dumber, and Daisy is the female friend….who is female. The teacher they will torture later is Mrs. Hardesty, and her classes are always about monsters somehow.
Gotta love that subtlety.
Micheal has this dog whistle that he uses to make the window blinds go. Because…that’s how that works. Yes, he says he did it with tech stuff but it’s still far fetched. I’m not sure why he likes to torture her given that she doesn’t really seem to do anything bad, she’s just kind of odd.
Eventually he is caught and and his friends end up in trouble to.. DeWayne was in it, but Daisy did pretty much nothing. She just laughed a little bit whole Micheal was being scolded so ???
The kids are told to meet her at her house on Saturday for “Community Service”. By that she means they must dig through dumpsters and get all the caps and bottles. I’m pretty sure a teacher can’t make a student do something like this but this is Goosebumps, so there’s no point in bringing it up.
While the kids are pretty pissed, they do their duty until Mr Wong, the cool Principal shows up, as he just happens to live nearby, I guess. This bit doesn’t have a huge point, as it just has Mr. Wong helping them a bit.
Although he himself is a bit important later.
Later, the kids are filthy and pissed. Micheal is so mad that he wants to get their teacher back. And once he sees a black cat, he gets a perfect revenge plan.
And that’s how we got to where we are now, with them in their house. Eh, there was no point to starting the book In Media Res, but whatever. I still think his plan is kind of lame and accomplishes nothing, but we need to get this plot started somehow!
They say that Dewayne’s mom had to throw out his clothes because she refuses to wash anything that smelly. You think this would cause her to call up the school and get the teacher in the trouble for making him do this, but of course the logical thing doesn’t happen.
So how does that epic cliffhanger turn out? …There was no one there. …Lame! They change their minds and take the cat to the attic, making the basement thing even more pointless. They do the deed, but of course Mrs. H arrives home before they can leave the attic.
Naturally, they end up hiding in there as she climbs up to the attic when she hears those odd noises. But it turns out she actually came here for an actual reason: To check in on the giant egg she has under a sheet.
…What, your teacher doesn’t do that? Next you’re gonna tell me they don’t sit on it like Mrs. H does. Pfft, you guys are weird.
They are forced to wait until she falls asleep, so they can leave after a false scare. You can likely guess the egg is for based on the cover, and it’s every bit as crazy as it sounds like it will be.
The kids talk about what happened, and think it’s best to just not tell anyone. If you think that’s too smart for Goosebumps Charecters, then see how they use actual logic to explain why DeWayne’s theory about this being a prank holds no water.
Once again, my job gets stolen.
The next day, Mrs’ H mentions to Micheal that someone left a cat in her house. Hey, now a villain (oh come on, you know she’s the bad guy) is smart. Although not smart enough to just punish him now, and somewhat buy his denials.
But given what happens later, I can forgive that.
After this little bit, he decides he has to sneak into her attic again and get to the bottom of this. His friends wisely back out of this and even admit they are being pussies. Whoa, this is getting a bit too smart.
Hey, if most people were in their postion, they wouldn’t push their luck, especially if it meant something creepy would happen. I would but i’m stupid.
So he’s on his as he hides out to see what does with the egg this time. She sits on the egg again, and after a few long hours, it actually starts to crack, and the creature from the cover (with a green arm instead of red) emerges.
Well, that was quick. Still took 40 pages, but not too bad a wait in this context.
Mrs. H refers to the creature as a baby, which means she has to be all cute towards it. Which is amazing. After a false scare, Micheal follows her to see what the hell she is doing hatching a monster.
She goes to a room full of monster she hatched. Wait, how did a room full of monsters not make a bunch of noise that Micheal could hear?
“I made a promise to Commander Xannax. We will succeed in our mission. We will take over this planet. And we will TRIUMPH over the weak earthlings!”
Naturally. Hey, this one of the few times in Goosebumps I could make a M Bison reference, may as well do the parody reference.
So yeah, the big twist is that she’s an evil alien and hatching monsters in order to take over the world. The monster part his missing details, but otherwise is a fun idea. Kind of generic, but more creative than the more well known Goosebumps alien story.
After yet another false scare, Mrs H proclaims that her plan is to feed eggs to kids at school to turn them into Monsters. So in order words, this is Girl Who Cried Monster meets Calling All Creeps, with a bit of Egg Monsters from Mars for good measure.
- have no problem with this.
“We will take over this puny planet, or my name isn’t Hyborg-Xrxuz!”
She sure loves her clunky exposition. With that, Micheal manages to escape and he runs home, to tell his parents about this. Yeah, the stupidity is back, as he tells his parents a crazy story expecting them to buy it.
Just like in Calling in Creeps, they pretend to buy it only to just be joshing him. I really hope that’s our last false scare, even I’m sick of them by now. Since no one will help him, he decides to go back to the house the next day to get a picture of the monsters.
But when he gets there, he sees a Monster in the kitchen making eggs.
“How did it escape from the basement?”
Mrs. H likely let him out, duh.
“How did it know how to cook?”
I love that is what he’s wondering.
As it turns out, this monster is actually Mrs. H.
“Mrs. Hardesty is a monster too!”
Why are you shocked that the evil alien is ifnact, an evil alien?
She ends up catching him, and despite his attempts to weasel out of it, she forces him eat some eggs, which turn him into a monster. I like that this happens fast, it just gets right to the case.
With that, Mrs. H leaves to go to do evil stuff.
“Who said teachers can’t have fun?”
I love that line for some reason, but I don’t love that she just now gave him a huge change to escape. Bah.
Before the other monsters can get their hands on Micheal, DeWayne and Daisy conveniently show up, having gotten curious. However, they can’t exactly tell one of the monster happens to be Micheal, but Micheal convinces them with that dog whistle from way earlier.
Just go with it.
That’s all fine, and how is he supposed to deal with life as a monster? Oh, he just eats the eggs to turn back into a human. …That was easy. It’s almost like him becoming a monster was pointless!
Anyway, he’s actually only half human right now, but they are out of eggs so he can’t eat more. Ah well. They decided to go ask Mr Wong for help. Yep, tell him about the alien invasion. He’ll believe you.
Thankfully, some monsters get out and follow them, so he’ll see the monsters and buy their story. Tons of convenient things going on right now!
They get to his house and since he doesn’t answer the door, they rudely just walk in. But the rude-ness doesn’t matter, because they see him sitting on an egg. Yep, he’s evil too, what a twist! …Actually, I didn’t quite see it coming, I figured he was just a good alien here to help out, but nope he’s evil.
Mrs. H barges in and wonders how Micheal escape. Gee, maybe it’s because you left him alone and didn’t both to lock the damn door? …Oh, she was talking about her babies? Point still stands.
The monsters attacked the kids, and Micheal decides to let his inner monster out. After all, that’s his secret. He’s always angry.
….Yeah, I already made that reference in a Horrorland review, but shut up.
“They call me monster, and I am monster”
I am also wonky grammar!
He attacks the two villains, and all this noise causes the big egg to crack, making Mr. Wong fall into the yolk. Wait, there’s no monster hatchcing in there? Then why was he-oh never mind.
“I can’t swim!”
I think you can survive in very shallow egg yolk.
Mrs. H falls in after him and they turn into their true monster selves, only to just end up flailing about in the yolk. They end up under the yolk….and never come back up. Yeah, they don’t appear after this.
They just kind of randomly drown in egg yolk ….Lame! I know it was a big egg but the yolk still can’t be that deep! Now that is Anti Climax if I’ve ever seen one.
Of course the other monsters still exist, but they just gobble up some eggs and turn back into egg yolk, because that is what they were to begin with. So that yolk in the egg was supposed to turn into monsters….somehow.
Whatever, we’re almost done. Micheal eats the eggs and turns back into a full human. With that, they have saved the world from evil aliens with no motivation, and of course have no proof, so no one will ever know.
Although people will wonder where the hell the teacher and Principal went, and why their houe have giant eggs in them.
We cut to later at home, as they are celebrating a job well done with some dinner with the family. For desert, they have some cake.
“Isn’t it good, Mrs. Hardesty brought it over yesterday?’
…How were they unaware of this while this crap was going on?
“She said it was made with her own eggs?”
Dun dun dun, The End!
…Wait, let me see how the Enter Horrorland segments starts.
“My parents and I would still be monsters, But I led them to Mr. Wong’s House…there was enough of the disgusting egg yolk to turn us back into humans”
…Oh. For once they actually address what happens after a Goosebumps Twist Ending…That’s kind of cool!
Anyway, we’ve FINALLY finished another Horrorland review!
There isn’t a whole lot to say about this one. It was decent. Yeah, there are the usual plot holes, and the climax is….well not climatic at all, but it was still enjoyable. The concept was cool, even if it’s not done perfectly, and it actually has a decent sense of humor.
For the first GBH book not relying on previous materiel at all, it’s not too bad. It’s not amazingly memorable, but it is fun. You can tell this is meant to be a bit filler-y compared to the others, but it works fine.
Weird how such a simple one took me so long to get to, but ah well. It’s not my favorite, but for what it is, it’s fun. Not a whole lot more to say, really.
From now I on, I promise these will come out faster. Infact, I will start the new as soon as possible, and get the first arc done this year! I almost want to do all the rest of the modern books this year, but that would be crazy.
I do want to be up to the present at some point, although I don’t just go out and get each new book as it comes out like with movies, for complicated reasons. Either way, we will finish Arc one this year, in the very least!
Next time, we go back to to an evil camera.