At the end of the last episode review I said I was excited to watch the next one but I couldn’t have been that excited as here I am three months later finally sitting down to watch it. I do indeed remember this one being a good one though so fingers crossed time has treated this one decently.
We kick things off with a riveting 20 seconds of a group of people looking at a door through a fence. Just…looking at that door. Finally someone comes out of the door looking like Ozzy Osbourne. I guess this is actually…Spider-Head? Is that what the kid said? They go on about how creepy he is though he just looks like a pretty standard dude, I don’t get it. It’s not….holy shit that kid is Ryan fucking Gosling! I knew he made the Are You Afraid of the Dark rounds but I didn’t know he popped up here too! This must be amongst his proudest works I imagine. It’s probably Drive, then this immediately after, then Breaker High. My new goal in life is to sit down to interview him for his latest picture and immediately kick things off with “Now in Say Cheese and Die…”. I will be the first reporter to be punched in the jaw by Ryan Gosling, it will be glorious.
So Spiderhead is creepy I guess though I think it’s actually just Spidey. I guess he maybe eats cats or bats or rats or I don’t know he runs off and they go inside this factory where he apparently lives because none of them own a video game system or something that would occupy their time better than doing dumb shit like this.
This dialogue feels improvised and not good improvised. “I scared you. You were scared.” “I wasn’t scared.” “Yeah you were, you were scared”. I can’t accept that sort of conversation ended up on paper. Nobody would willingly write that dialogue exchange.They’re ragging on Spidey’s living situation even though it looks like the dude has his shit pretty good here. They then accidently stumble upon a huge camera that looks like something Batman might have used in the 60’s. Gosling uses the camera to take a picture of his friend standing on a staircase. After the picture has been taken, said friend immediately falls through the side of the staircase and into a conveniently placed pile of boxes. Thankfully he said “Cheddar” instead of cheese otherwise he would be way dead.
They go to leave and run directly into Spidey who I think I recognize from one of the Cube movies. He somehow also falls through the side of the staircase and the kids take off. You know I’m starting to notice that this show likes to film kids running away at weird angles. I don’t get it. Is it supposed to make it more intense or maybe artsy? Does the camera keep falling over and nobody is bothering to go and pick it back up? You can’t fool us into thinking this is something more than it is Goosebumps. You can’t make young Ryan Gosling running through a door in the middle of daytime spooky, you just can’t. The heart pumping music isn’t working either.
Gosling accidently took the camera with him and checks out the picture he took. The picture shows his friend falling despite the fact that Gosling took the photo before that happened. His friend tries to Jedi mind trick him into thinking he took the picture during the fall despite the fact they all have functioning eyeballs and were standing there when the camera went off before the fall took place. Also at least five seconds passed between the picture taking and the fall. Oh and the picture physically printed before the fall happened. And the guy getting his picture taken had dialogue acknowledging the picture had been taken right before he fell. Come on you idiots, it doesn’t take Sherlock Holmes to put this all together. Fuck you guys, pay attention and stop spouting bullshit.
Gosling (no I will not be using his proper character name) takes the camera home where he and his older brother start drooling over their Dad’s new car which seems to be just a standard Ford. Not something a teenager would get super psyched about at least. His brother asks to have his photo taken and Gosling refuses to show him the photo once it is printed. I really don’t get why. If something strange is indeed happening then wouldn’t showing his brother the photo immediately get somebody else on his side? He’s essentially guaranteeing the “you’re crazy Ryan Gosling! That camera isn’t evil!” scene later in the episode. Also why does his brother want to see the picture so badly? He comes barging into Gosling’s room a few minutes later demanding to see it. Is this the first picture anyone has taken of him? Is that why he’s so eager? Anyway we finally see the photo and sure enough the front of the car is completely dented in.
That night at dinner Gosling tries to convince his Dad not to drive the new car and to take it back which would be far easier to do had he just shown his brother that photo right away! You get one son acting weird then whatever but if both of them were insisting you can’t drive your car because a haunted photo said you would get in an accident? You may just listen at that point. It does at least create some suspense as the dad insists the whole family take a ride and we the audience know that camera is up to some shit and that that is a terrible idea.
In the car, Gosling finally decides to show them the photo but it is immediately blown out the window. I assume that’s the camera’s doing as well because who the hell loses their grip on a photo in a car that’s going 35 miles an hour? Sure enough they almost hit a truck but then they don’t hit the truck. *shrug* Not much more to say about it than that really.
Then a slow motion barbecue happens where Gosling takes a photo of his whole family and then they show up as weirdly fake looking skeletons. Seriously they look like they are drawn on the photo. So bright and cartoonish looking. Was it seriously that hard to just take a photo with some fake skeletons in it and then show that? Probably would have been faster than this doodle they concocted. Also this is a dream. No surprise there. That camera really does look like a Batman toaster…
The next day Gosling is with his juggling friend who tells Gosling he is out of his god damn mind about this whole evil camera business. They point out though that no matter what this camera is pretty fucked as it has nowhere to open it or change the film. Then some 90’s bullies happen though unlike a lot of these shows, I can totally believe these guys are actually huge assholes. Oh and holy shit one of them is the guy who stole Zeebo’s nose on Are You Afraid of the Dark! They really busted out the all-star cast for this one. Ok then I definitely buy these guys as assholes because fuck Zeebo Thief. As expected the bullies start messing around with the camera though I was a bit surprised that the bullies actually don’t end up with their picture taken. Instead Gosling and his friend run away and that’s the end of that. Kinda pointless actually. Unexpected, but pointless.
They end up at their friend Sherry’s house and proving once again that this is a time when having your picture taken was a rare and special occurrence, she immediately bullies Gosling into taking a photo of her. He caves surprisingly easy considering he is convinced this thing is evil and all. The picture comes out and he wisely shows everyone this time. Sherry is completely missing from the photo and proving these kids aren’t destined for greatness, her first accusation is that he missed her in the shot. Don’t you remember standing exactly where the camera is pointed five fucking seconds ago?! Gosling at least points out that she’s an idiot. Before he has a chance to retake the photo, his brother shows up (how did he know where they were?) to report that their Dad did indeed get into a car accident.
That night Greg is visited by a female detective and a male cop trying to act tough but coming off as a fucking goofball. Sherry has gone missing and I guess they think he’s responsible? What is this cop’s problem? I do like when he breaks the news he says “She’s gone. Vanished. Disappeared.” Yep, those are all synonyms, well done sir! I wish he had kept going and listed off at least 6 more words. Anyway this scene goes on for a while and they really do seem to think Gosling had something to do with this. He says he took a picture, they want to see it, the picture is fucked up, etc. It’s just of running around in circles really. Oh and Spidey is outside the house, completely forgot about that guy.
The next morning Gosling’s idiot juggling asshole friend STILL doesn’t believe there is something wrong with this camera. Dude, does the camera have to bite you or something? What is it going to take to get you on the anti-camera team? As a prank, someone needs to take the moment where Gosling yells “Stupid photos” and angrily tears them up and put them in an acting montage at an awards show. Put some slow motion and swelling music in there, it would be tremendous.
Gosling decides the best thing to do is to take the camera back to that weird factory and return it to Spidey. Outside the factory he runs into Sherry who says she doesn’t remember anything from the time she was gone and suddenly reappeared in her backyard. It turns out this was around the time Gosling had that awesome dramatic moment with the photo tearing. So the two of them team up and go inside the factory. “I don’t see Spidey”, Gosling says immediately upon entering the room and before looking around in any way. Sure enough, Spidey appears almost immediately. Wow that is a terrible fucking wig the poor Spidey actor has to wear.
Spidey reveals that yes the camera does reveal the future but it also makes it shitty. Also he invented it. Also he can’t destroy it. Why did he invent an evil camera that you can’t break? I would love to see the blueprints on that one as clearly things went very, very wrong. Oh and he says they know too much and they can never leave. As cool and dark an ending as that would be, they take his picture which causes him to….blink out of existence in a bright array of colour. Oh he was sucked into the camera. ….Why? They didn’t say it could do that. Why would he include that as a feature? Man Spidey, you really shouldn’t have built this thing.
Oh and the bullies from earlier come into the factory and take the camera, saying “those jerks thought they could hide it from us.” What? They actually went looking for the camera? So maybe they weren’t being assholes, maybe they really did want that camera. Also how the fuck would they ever think to look here?! Anyway they take a picture, Spidey appears behind them laughing but not really laughing because his mouth isn’t moving so it’s just a part of the soundtrack. So he was trapped for like 4 hours, not a bad deal.
I guess not a bad episode? It has an interesting concept that they could have done more with for sure. They got a little bit of suspense out of the car crash but there wasn’t enough of that and as with many of the Goosebumps episodes I’ve watched so far, it’s just not scary. Also a lot of it makes absolutely no sense, such as Spidey being the inventor of this insanely evil product. They make no mention of it being possessed or anything so yeah, he either intentionally did this or fucked up real, real bad. Young Ryan Gosling is always an interesting oddity as well. It’s better than the majority of the episodes I’ve watched so far but still pretty meh. Again, I wonder if this show was ever good or if I’m currently taking off the rosiest tinted glasses I’ve ever worn.
These things just keep getting longer and longer don’t they?