My friend always knows the type of shows that I like, so when she suggested this cartoon, Over the Garden Wall, I was down to watch it.
The show follows stepbrothers Wirt (Elijah Wood) and Greg who were out walking in the forest and are lost. As they are trying to figure out how to get home they come across a woodsman (Christopher Lloyd) who tries to help them. He warns them of “the beast” and directs them the way to go. As they try to get home they come upon all kinds of fantastical and spooky people/creatures; and the woodsman himself might not be as helpful as they originally thought. In this world where anything could happen who can you trust? Everything in the show is cute and sweet with an undertone of something sinister.
“Hard Times at the Huskin’ Bee” is the second episode of the series and the two brothers have been wandering in the direction the woodsman pointed out when Greg finds a bird trapped in a bramble bush. She’s a talking bird, Beatrice (Melanie Lynskey), who they met briefly in the previous episode and as Greg saved her, she is now a member of their party.
Beatrice wants to take them to Adelaide the lady of the forest to help them, but Wirt sees a sign to Pottsfield and decides to go in that direction.
When they arrive they find an empty village and only turkeys in the houses. They continue walking through the creepy village, and I’m like if this was me I would go running and screaming from it, I’ve seen plenty of films and read enough books to know things are not going to go well.
They hear music coming from the barn and head over there to ask for directions. When they get to the barn they find these pumpkin straw/scarecrow humanoids running about. Wirt feels safe as he think they are wearing costumes and not real pumpkins.
One girl sees Wirt and comments “aren’t you a little ripe still to be here?”
This whole thing would send me reeling, but the boys don’t leave yet. They do get freaked out when they see a gigantic pumpkin and realize that these aren’t just people having a regular festival, something fantastical and grim is going on here.
When they try to leave they are stopped and have to be punished….
I was thinking that they were goin to try and smash them, but instead they force Greg, Wirt, and Beatrice to do community service.
Beatrice is still trying to get the kids to leave as she doesn’t trust these pumpkin villagers and is really worried that they have something more sinister planned; especially after the two brothers are digging holes that are the perfect dimensions and depth to be a grave.
The pumpkin people come to check to see if they are finished and Beatrice has Wirt stall them while she tries to pick the locks.
Wirt tells them he found rocks when digging so it took longer, and then continues to ramble. When Wirt sees Beatrice and Greg running away without him, he gives up and is prepared to meet his doom.
But out of the hole comes skeletons who do not attack him but put on pumpkins and straw. It turns out they never planned to hurt the brothers, they just needed some help getting their friends.
The pumpkins tell the brothers they can stay as long as they want to, but they decline as they are both determined to get home.
I really enjoyed this, it’s the perfect blend of cute, spooky, and grim; with a fairy tale feel. I highly recommend it.
For more animated TV show episode reviews, go to “To All the Ghouls I’ve Loved Before” from 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo (1985)
For more creepy villages, go to
This Village is Full of Strange People: Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple, Endless Night (2013)