Review By Request: The Tale of the Dollmaker

Boredom for me generally equals things to read for all of you, so enjoy.  Yesterday’s article was powered by my Facebook followers, and today’s article comes in by request from Twitter, so clearly you’re missing out if you’re not following me on either.  Then there’s tumblr where I did a bit of commentary on a pornographic parody of The Hills Have Eyes, called The Hills Have Thighs.  Not going to lie, things get a bit strange on tumblr.

Onto the review, requested by @breannimal (might as well follow her) we’ve got some season three Are You Afraid of the Dark? coming your way.  Remember how this works?  Here are your links:

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

We begin with Tucker running full speed to the meeting because Betty Anne is up, and Gary told him that she tells really creepy and weird stories.  I’m inclined to agree, they’re certainly better than Kiki’s stories.  But not as good as Frank, who is of course played by FRIEND OF THE BLOG JASON ALISHARAN.   Anyways, lets kill of any suspense regarding what Betty Anne’s tale will be about:

I'm Talking Tiny and I don't like this episode

Tucker isn’t impressed and neither am I.  Sorry folks, but the creepiest doll related thing ever on television was The X-Files episode “Chinga” it made me want to board up the cabinet where my sister kept her china dolls.  But I’m sure Betty Anne will at least cook up something memorable.  She tosses some dried up Zand into the fire and begins.  Submitted for the approval of The Midnight Society, she calls this story…

Meet Melissa, she spends weekends with her Aunt and Uncle, probably because her parents resent having her.  Spending time at their house was boring until Susan Henderson moved in and became her best friend.

Unfortunately for Melissa, the Hendersons moved away, but no one is sure why.  With nothing else to do, Melissa accompanies her Aunt and Uncle to Bingo, where I assume she swiped at by a bunch of old women.  Disillusioned, Melissa does the only sensible thing and breaks in to the Henderson’s old house.  I don’t care if the door was open; it’s still a crime, stop being an enabler.


She's got the cold eyes of a hardened criminal, and the fashion sense of a colorblind child from the 80's.

You know, for a supposedly abandoned house, it’s really well furnished.  They even left the closets full of clothes.  Also in the closet; a hidden staircase that leads to the attic, which of course is where Melissa heads to with reckless abandon.  What horrors does this attic hold?


Oh come on, it’s not even a creepy looking dollhouse!  She also finds a strange door and is seemingly put into a trance as she goes to open it.

But her Aunt stops her before she can open it, letting her know that she doesn’t think she should be “snooping around.”  This is how criminals are born, lack of discipline!  Apparently her aunt has been taking care of the house since the Hendersons moved away.  I suppose that explains the amount of shit left behind.  Oh and hey, remember how no one knows why the moved away?  Well that was a bold faced lie.  The Hendersons moved because Susan disappeared, but they’re keeping the house just in case she ever comes back.  Not sure what good that will do her if they aren’t there for her return though.

Next we’re treated to a really stupid scene in which Melissa’s aunt and uncle discreetly discuss what happened to Susan.  The aunt cautions the uncle to be quiet, lest Melissa hear, and he responds by only getting louder, yelling that Mrs. Henderson claimed it was the house that got Susan.  This entire scene is made worse by the fact that Melissa is literally sitting four feet away from them while they’re talking.

Later that night, Melissa is woken up by someone whispering “Help Me”  Add in the fact that she looks over at the Henderson’s house and see that strange attic door open and close, and you can probably guess where this is going.  That’s right, break in #2.  Once she’s back in the attic, Melissa realizes that the dollhouse is actually a miniature of the actual Henderson house, complete with tiny attic door to nowhere.

So when your dolls' lives don't go as planned, they've got a way out.

But why settle for a tiny pointless door, when you could play with a life sized one!  Yep, Melissa is again entranced by the door, and again approaches it looking like someone who’s struggling to keep themselves from falling into a meth induced coma.

With no meddlesome aunt to stop her this time, Melissa successfully opens the door.  What does she find?  If you guessed Susan, looking like some sort of mime prostitute, give yourself a gold star!  And probably get help.

How do I mime "Not interested, not in a million years"?

Melissa of course decides to enter the door, but before she can, her uncle violently tackles her to the ground.  Her uncle doesn’t believe her crazy tales about seeing Susan and shows her that the door doesn’t lead to anything but a three story drop.  Apparently fed up with their niece’s hallucinations, and probably because her parents would never let them hear the end of it if she died on their watch, Melissa’s aunt and uncle decide to board up the door, much to Melissa’s dismay.

Of course thanks to their previous lack of discipline, Melissa seems to only take this latest development as a challenge.  Yeah, she breaks in a third time and this time she actually does break in, shattering a window with a hammer.  Like a criminal.

I told you it was coming. The seeds of delinquency have been sown!

She then sets to work undoing her uncle’s board up job.  Once that’s out of the way, she tethers herself to the doorknob with some string and enters the doorway.  Surprisingly (disappointingly?) she doesn’t fall to her death.   Instead, if you didn’t see it coming, she ends up inside the dollhouse.  There, she finds a comically oversized salt shaker.  Oh, and also her creepy friend, Susan.

My you're looking...unsettling today.

Turns out the dollhouse turns those who enter it into dolls.  That seems like an appropriate turn of events.  Things get hairy for Melissa when she finds that the door she came in through no longer exists.  Luckily she remembers that the dollhouse is a replica of the real house and figures out that she can probably just exit through the dollhouse attic.  There’s some weak attempt to build tension when she finds that there’s a shelf in front of the attic door, but she manages to push it over.   Of course Melissa and Susan escape and no one can believe that Susan has returned.  She just seems thrilled to no longer be made of porcelain.

Not that it's that much of an improvement....

The End

Betty Anne fills us in that they burned the dollhouse later that evening.  That’s all well and good, but that really doesn’t explain how they came into possession of an evil dollhouse to begin with.  Or why they never noticed that the door lead into it.  Or why the never just boarded up the door in the first place considering they had a young child in the house.  You know what?  The Hendersons are terrible parents and they deserved what happened to them.

And if you enjoyed this, don’t forget to check out the 31 other episodes of Are You Afraid of the Dark that I reviewed last October.


2 thoughts on “Review By Request: The Tale of the Dollmaker

  1. Pingback: Are You Afraid of the Dark? Review Index « My Rotting Brain

  2. Hey, I have tree requests for the AYAOTD reviews.

    1. The Tale of Many Faces

    2. The Tale of the Hunted

    3. The Tale of the Dark Dragon

    Please and thank you!

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