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Easter Sunday Massacre
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March 20, 2024

Over The Garden Wall; Review/Summary

Part Four
Over The Garden Wall; Review/Summary

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Over The Garden Wall is an animated series in which two brothers end up in a mysterious land called The Unknown. Wirt acts as the mature leader, while Greg tails behind and makes things rather humorous. He has a frog who hasn’t been named yet, and there’s also Beatrice, a bluebird with a big heart who gave up her bad intentions for the boys. Our characters are split up from each other, as Greg made a promise to the beast and walked off with him while Wirt woke up, tried to find him, and fell into an ice-cold lake. He wakes up in a tree full of bluebirds warming him up, and is set to find Greg. (He also is in charge of the frog.)

Episode 10:

Beatrice flies through the snow in search of Greg, and hears him talking to a figure who wasn’t in her view. She’s blown back due to the wind as Greg turns his head wondering what he heard but the figure, who is the beast, dismisses it. He sent Greg to look for a golden comb and a spool of silver thread. Now he wants Greg to give him the sun by putting it in a china cup. Greg doesn’t understand how this would be possible, but after the beast says, “Anything is possible if you set your mind to it, right?” Greg uses the perspectives to his advantage, making the sun look small enough to fit into the cup. Greg is then prompted to wait in the cold in order for him to contain the sun. Wirt is stumbling through the forest during the snowfall and Beatrice bumps into his head. She aids Wirt in finding Greg and helps him travel in the right direction. In the old abandoned cabin, the Woodsman is trying to find Edelwood for his lantern to no avail. He hears the beast’s singing piercing the sky and walks towards the direction of his voice. Arriving and confronting the beast, he finds that Greg has begun to turn slowly into an Edelwood acting as the tree stump as branches wrap around his body. Woodsman, unaware, is heartbroken and distraught, being told he grinded up souls of lost children, and adding insult to injury he brings up the Woodsman’s daughter which triggers him emotionally. He goes over to try to free Greg from the branches but the beast tries to steal the lantern back from the Woodsman, being stopped in his tracks, and then bursting out into a fight between the two. Wirt, Beatrice, and the frog enter the fray, taking the lantern and finding Greg in his state. Promising that they’ll leave altogether and bring, Jason Funderburker; the frog back home. The Woodsman falls over as the beast confronts Wirt, coming to a compromise to put his brother’s soul in the lantern if he takes the task as lantern bearer. With no choice he agrees but after some thought he realizes the beast only has some weird obsession with the lantern and calls his proposal stupid. He sees past the beast and realizes that it’s like his soul is in the lantern. After being caught in his bluff, the beast freaks out but is at the mercy of Wirt. He gives the lantern back to the Woodsman as he frees his brother and prepares to leave, prompting Beatrice to join but she declines. He gives her the scissors she was looking for and then leaves. Woodsman finally being free from the manipulation, shines his lantern on the beast and snuffs it out. Wirt wakes up and saves Greg and saves Jason Funderburker (the frog) from the river, and gets them to shore as a search party that includes their friends finds them and rushes them to the emergency room. Sarah stands next to Wirt’s bed as he wakes up and wonders where Greg is, finding out he’s safe and Sarah asks about the tape while Wirt says she can listen to it at his house or listen to other tapes and then build their way up to it. A montage of the brothers’ effect of  The Unknown is displayed as Beatrice’s family is restored from birds to humans. The Woodsman reunites with his daughter once he resides back in his old cabin.

The entirety of this series was given so much effort, but before any of this at all, there was a pilot that kickstarted Over the Garden Wall, actually being called something else entirely, Tome of the Unknown. This pilot was not part of the main series, it was just the driving point for Over the Garden Wall.

PILOT:

Similar to the main story, they start in The Unknown, but instead of just being the main two characters that we’re familiar with, we have instead Beatrice and Jason Funderburker (the frog, he doesn’t have a name in here either.) Their goals are set to search for the Tome of the Unknown. Greg wants to find a huge goose that they can ride on, but Wirt brings up that they should ride a horse instead. They lose track of Greg while he travels into a mysterious garden for a snack. Turns out that in the garden, he finds a vegetable car! What makes it so absurd though is that the car seems to be actually capable of being driven with the main functions of a car. There’s a normal steering wheel and a gear stick with a crank at the very front of the car. A vegetable man by the name of John Crops enters the scene, playing a guitar and singing a sad melody about his loneliness. Wanting to head to the “big city” to find a lady he could spend his time with, and after his performance is over, the boys compliment John. Wirt wants the car and asks if he can take him to the “big city” and in return, he can use the car. They set off on the road when crows dive from above, diverging them from the path as they crash into a giant scarecrow. The crows fly off, but they’re unable to drive further. Luckily, it doesn’t matter because they have reached their destination. As they enter, they bump into a vegetable lady, and it seems like the show is about to end since one of the musicians is sick. Greg prompts John Crops to go take his place. He’s uncertain but after being prompted to do so by the lady and given compliments, he goes up to sing. Wirt finishes fixing the car and drives off, but then the scarecrow snaps off making a bunch of animals crash the party. Wirt and Beatrice grab Greg and want John to come along, but he seems to finally be having fun so they leave him. Their car starts to get eaten by creatures as Greg wanders away from the car and screams, startling all of the animals and making them leave. Turns out he’s screaming in excitement because he found a huge goose. The episode ends as John Crops takes the woman he bumped into back home, and proceeds to live with her. The others are however still looking for the Tome of the Unknown as they ride the goose into the forest furthermore.

Tome of the Unknown and Over the Garden Wall were both stunning displays of animation, music, and storytelling. Tome of the Unknown was the kickstarter for the main series and the stepping stone for how everything turned out. Patrick McHale had prior experience with cartoons before drafting up Tome of the Unknown, working on iconic shows such as The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack, and Adventure Time. He made an absolutely stunning animated series that received an Emmy Award for Outstanding Animated Program, which most definitely was deserved, going through the entirety of the series.

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About the Contributor
Tosh Gauger is a Sophomore who attends Forest Grove High School. He exhibits interest in writing and finds it to be unique and fun. His favorite class is usually something that has to do with Science. In his family, he has only one cat named and it's name is Iris. In the future, he wants to use his creativity to change the world ever so slightly. His average WPM for typing ranges from 80 - 90, but can reach a top speed of 120-125+. He ALSO loves Apple Fritters with a cup of milk.

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