Are You Afraid of the Dark? Episode 5: “The Tale of the Hungry Hounds”
A recap and review of Are You Afraid of the Dark? Episode 5: “The Tale of the Hungry Hounds”
The Midnight Society:
As always, Kiki begins tonight’s episode by taking shots at Kristen when she doesn’t show up on time to help them build the fire
Kristen eventually shows up with a hound and explains that “Elvis” is helping her with tonight’s tale:
- In what seems to be a common theme so far, Amy stays with her cousin Pam for the summer
- One day, the girls discover a box in the attic that contains a picture of Pam’s deceased aunt Dora, who looks strikingly similar to Pam
- The picture shows Pam’s aunt with a horse and Amy asks if Pam ever rides, Pam explains that her mother won’t let her….a noise is heard in the other part of the attic
- The girls discover the noise coming from a locked trunk. They keep hearing the mouse-like noises
- For fun (I guess), Pam shows Amy the neighbor’s horse, which she explains she rides when they are out of town (yup, that’s not illegal or anything). As Pam begins to mount the horse, her Mom shows up and honks her car horn with purpose and spooks the horse (great job Mom)
- The next day, the girls decide to play a Ouija board and the first message they receive is “LETMEOUT” and the second being the number “149”. The girls believe that this is referencing the trunk they found in the attic
- The girls go to the attic and the combination works. The trunk opens and the girls find all of Aunt Dora’s riding clothes. Pam picks up her aunt’s coat and puts it on. After putting it on, Pam begins to act strange and proceeds to walk out of a new door from her attic that leads to the ground, it’s also suddenly night:
- Amy follows her cousin (or who used to be her cousin it seems) down the magical stairs and into the woods. Amy finds that Pam has stopped at the family graveyard
- Amy approaches Pam, aka Dora, and she explains that her pet fox would leave her presents, like the bone in her hand. Aunt Dora further explains that she would feed her fox every day, and that it basically made the family’s hunting hounds mad
- Further more, Dora states how one day, the fox got out and this made the hounds very upset (these hounds have sooooome complex emotional problems). She went after the fox, but her horse got scared and they both fell over (and this is all the explanation we get as the audience about what happened to Aunt Dora)
- All of a sudden, another ghost appears, Giles the stable keeper. He explains how Dora forgot to feed the hounds, which made them ravenous and they attacked him, which led to a heart attack and his death. Giles angrily lunges at the girls and chases them off
- The girls run into a barn and the door is locked behind them. In the barn, the girls hear the hounds barking and Dora explains that she needs to feed the hounds. Amy tries to get through to Pam once more, but it doesn’t work so Amy decides to lock Dora in a stable and demands she returns Pam to her body
- Dora promises to make everything right as long as Amy feeds the hounds. Amy agrees and Dora tells her where their food is. While Amy looks for the food, Dora escapes and releases the hungry hounds on her own
- The hounds rush out and try to attack Amy. It looks like she’ll become their dinner, when all of a sudden the ghost of Dora’s fox shows up and rushes out of the barn, distracting the hounds, who chase after him
- Amy notices that Pam/Dora is gone. She exits the barn and finds Dora’s ghost on her horse, who rides away. Amy rushes back to the magical staircase. She is back in the attic where she finds Pam, who doesn’t seem to remember or know anything about that night’s events
- Pam tells Amy that she better go feed the “dogs”, which makes Amy freak out, because they only have one dog. Pam assures her that she said “dog” and is very confused as to why Amy is acting so weird. Pam walks away and Amy reaches into her pocket and pulls out a handful of kibble
“The Tale of the Hungry Hounds”….what a mess. I don’t even know how to describe this episode, let alone summarize a quick paragraph on what it was about. Is it about ghosts? Is it about horses? Is it about foxes? It seemed to barely be about hounds. Also, good lord just clearly explain how Aunt Dora died!!!!! I still don’t fully get it. She fell off her horse and then what happened?????????? I don’t really remember this episode from back in the day and maybe that’s because Nickelodeon probably never replayed it due to it’s awfulness.
So those hungry hounds? We see them for a grand total of like 30 seconds and they looked like they were running towards Amy to lick her face and not hurt her. Giles the stable keeper is creepy, but if you name the damn episode “The Tale of the Hungry Hounds”, you better make them like Cujo, and less like Air Bud.
Scare Factor: 4/10
Pam’s odd behavior is actually very creepy when she turns into Dora. But there really is nothing too scary about this episode because you are spending most of your energy stating “WTF” every other minute. Once again, Giles and his tantrum catch you off guard, but besides that, “The Tale of the Hungry Hounds” has no bite. (Get it bit…hounds…that are hungry?…oh who needs you!)
The only saving grace with “The Tale of the Hungry Hounds” are the two main characters. Both girls do a great job acting and Amy provides some pretty funny one-liners where she seems to be the character the audience is living this episode through. The actress who played Pam, Mia Kirshner, did a wonderful job pulling double duty as Pam/Dora, and she ended up doing some pretty note worthy stuff after her days of acting as Pam.
So the fox saves them from the hounds….right? We get ourselves another happy ending in “The Tale of the Hungry Hounds” and it might be the best ending actually we’ve ever seen, it means we are through with this train wreck of an episode.
Total Score: 18/50
In case you missed the last episode, click the below link: