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Blog: Blogger Beware

Blogger Beware is a Goosebumps Blog run by Troy Steele. He writes synopses and reviews of Goosebumps books full of humor and snark. He intends to eventually review all of the books and all of R. L. Stine's work.

His work is so full of allusions that a fan of the books and the blog has compiled a reference guide. Also, most of the book recaps on Goosebumps Wiki - even some on Wikipedia itself - are just Steele's recaps with all of the snarky parts cut out.

The reference guide is right here.

For the record, in 2013 R.L. Stine was asked about the blog during a Reddit Q&A. He's not a fan.

This blog provides examples of:

  • Actually Pretty Funny:
    • In the Night of the Living Dummy review Troy admitted the joke about Russian and Yugoslavian songs was pretty funny.
    • It also tends to come off sort of this way whenever he admits that a book was relatively good.
  • Adults Are Useless: Hence the "Questionable Parenting" section. Which also stretches to Questionable Aunting, Uncleing, Grandparenting, Teaching Etc.
  • Affectionate Parody: Started off that way, with Troy poking fun at the books but grudgingly admitting affection for them. This didn't last long.
  • Berserk Button: "Chicken Chicken" is the only Goosebumps book Troy legitimately despises. He even admits that it almost ended the blog...
  • Broke the Rating Scale: In Troy's list of the 10 worst Goosebumps books, "Chicken Chicken" is rated #0 because the book "doesn't deserve a number".
  • Call Back: The review of You Can't Scare Me! has "BEE THROWING BEE THROWING BEE THROWING". Return to Ghost Camp follows this up with "BEE EATING BEE EATING BEE EATING".
  • Caustic Critic: Usually.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: He often points out the side characters that seemingly drop off the face of the earth halfway through.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Troy, in many reviews.
  • Dude, Not Funny!: The In-Universe opinion of "Chicken, Chicken" and "Revenge R Us".
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: Both on the blog and in the books themselves. The first entry, Egg Monsters From Mars (and to a lesser extent other early entries) has a very short synopsis with very little in the way of snark or obscure references that would come to define the blog's sense of humor. In the books themselves, Troy notes that the first few books are much more gruesome and violent than later entries in the series.
  • Flat "What.": A running gag.
  • Hypocritical Humor: "I don't know, an online site devoted to Goosebumps— how popular could that be?"
  • Mad Libs Catch Phrase: "[person], who [verbs] halfway through the book/[some event which they regularly verb halfway through]"
  • Most Writers Are Adults: Pointed out in the once-a-review "R. L. Stine Shows He Is Down With Kids" section.
  • Running Gags:
    • The Flat "What.".
    • The phrase "halfway through", most commonly found under "Platonic Boy/girl relationship" in the format "person, who disappears halfway through the book," but if no one Chucks, he will find someone or something that does something some fraction of the way through something else.
    • Mentioning Evan Ross from "Monster Blood" as frame of reference for a boring protagonist.
    • Mentioning Andrea (Andy) from "Monster Blood" longingly as the best character in the series and wondering why she can't be the protagonist.
    • The one where it turns out they're all dogs or something.
    • Mentioning the common themes in the series such as moving and all the scientists.
    • Reviling at the excess of vomit in the "Series 2000" books.
    • Using the structure of the title in his plot recaps, e.g. "The kids decide that they should stay in of the basement," or "Max doesn't believe that he let's got invisible."
    • "And then the car wash cost five dollars."
    • A sentence that is clearly set up to use the title of one Goosebumps book as a phrase, but instead uses another Bad Hare Day.
    • "Oh, cool, I've seen [insert movie Stine is clearly homaging/ripping off here], too."
    • "Juno. In theaters now."
    • Suggesting that the book/story was ghostwritten by someone other than R.L. Stine - especially when the book in question is above-average by Goosebumps standards.
  • Platonic Life Partners: He points out there's the "obligatory platonic boy-girl relationship" in each story.
  • A Rare Sentence: In "Phantom of the Auditorium":
    The Corn Flakes aren't soggy yet, so the Phantom must be near. I still can't believe that sentence needed to be written by me. Amazing.
  • Title Drop: The entries usually subvert title drops in the actual book by substituting the title of a different book instead.
  • Token Minority: Frequently Lampshaded.
  • Totally Radical: The "R.L. Stine Is Down With The Kids" section of the recaps makes fun of the books' many dubious depictions of children's slang and activities.
  • Unfortunate Implications: In-Universe, for lack of a better term:
    • Troy notes this in Attack of the Jack'O'Lanterns with the black kid who's mentioned as being as "Cool as an MTV rapper", unintelligible, one of the antagonists and having an afro.
    • He mentions Slappy punching Jillian and calling it a "love tap".
  • Unintentional Period Piece: When applicable, a review will include a list of all the references that show it was written in the 90s.
  • Viewers Are Geniuses: No, Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place isn't readily accessible to that many people.
  • Wall Banger: In-universe example: At the end of the "Chicken Chicken" review, there's this:
    She offers them some soda to drink, as they are probably parched from all the abuse she's doled out on them. Cole drinks his cup down and then burps. Vanessa whispers "Pig pig" and I literally threw the goddamn book across the room.
  • Wham Episode:
    • About half of the One Day in Horrorland review is a straightforward analysis of how Goosebumps jumped the shark with that book. Lampshaded as Troy concludes, "But you guys came for the jokes."
    • On a meta level, Cry of the Cat. Troy claims he didn't read the Series 2000 books as a kid, and his reviews of that series grow increasingly bitter and aggravated, even by his standards. It culminates in book throwing.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Another Running Gag whereby Steele often points out when minor characters disappear halfway through the book.

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alternative title(s): Blogger Beware
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