Dipper: Get ready, guys. We're about to journey into the most horrifying, disturbing place any of us have ever been... our uncle's mind.One night, Stan catches Lil' Gideon trying to crack his safe where the Mystery Shack's deed is kept. Stan chases Gideon out, confident that the combination to the safe is secure in his head. Gideon decides to call upon his journal 2's greatest secret...a cycloptic 'triangle guy' called Bill Cipher. Gideon summons Bill, and orders him to find the safe combo in Stan's mind. Upon hearing the name Stan Pines, Bill agrees, stating that in return Gideon can help Bill out with his own plans. With the deal made, Bill goes off to invade Stan's mind. All this was witnessed by Mabel and Soos, who heard Gideon's summoning spell. The two report this to Dipper, who reads in his own journal 3 that Bill is the most dangerous creature in Gravity Falls. However, there is a spell that can be used to enter the mind Bill invades to prevent his chaos. With Stan showing signs of nightmares, the trio go in.They find themselves in a spooky area similar to the Mystery Shack. Bill appears, and as a display of power zaps a (Non-fatal) hole in Dipper and summons Xyler and Kraz, two fictional characters from the movie Dreamy Boy High. Bill explains that the Shack of Stan's mind has doors leading to different memories; one of which has the memory of Stan entering his safe's code. Bill flies off, and the gang goes to searching. Dipper gets separated from the others and finds a door leading to Stan's 'Dipper memories'. Interested on what his uncle truly thinks of him, and why he always gives Dipper the hard chores, the boy enters. there, he finds a memory of Stan and Soos talking over the old man's treatment of his nephew. Stan says, "The kid's a loser. He's weak. He's an utter embarrassment. I just want to get rid of him." Heartbroken, Dipper leaves.Meanwhile, Mabel finds the memory of Stan's combination, and Soos offers to destroy it...levitating the door into the air! It's actually Bill, who took Soos' form while the real Soos was distracted. With the memory in hand, Bill races off. Mabel, Soos, and the dream boys give chase and bump into Dipper. But by this time Dipper is no longer interested in helping his great-uncle, and just wants to leave. Bill contacts Gideon, but before he can relay the combo, Mabel knocks the memory into another memory, this one of the Bottomless Pit. At this failure Gideon breaks off the deal, and an enraged Bill attacks Mabel and Soos, transporting them to a floating arena in space and tormenting them with nightmares.Dipper runs into the memory of Soos and Stan talking, and hears Stan add to his earlier comment, "...Those are things said about me when I was a boy." Stan used to be a wimp as a child, until his father made him take boxing lessons. This is why Stan is so hard on Dipper; he's trying to toughen his nephew up so that he can fight back against the world, and he's actually quite proud of him. At this point Dipper is pulled into the memory. Stan undoes the hole Bill made, and reveals that anything is possible in the mind. With this knowledge in hand, Dipper races off to help his sister and Soos fight Bill. The three do a great job, but before they can finish Bill off, the demon puts a halt to the battle. Impressed by the three, Bill decides that they will be useful in the future and leaves them with this warning; "A darkness approaches. A day will come in the future where everything you care about will change."The gang wakes up. And while Stan wonders why he dreamed of two impossibly handsome men, the twins and Soos celebrate.Then the wall explodes. After Bill's failure, Gideon reveals he used dynamite on the safe and now has the deed. Ordering the Pines family out, he has his father take a wrecking ball to the Shack.
Tropes in this episode:
- Art Shift: Mabel's two dream boys.
- As You Know: The episode begins with a short conversation where the cast talk about Gideon's history and goals so that people who hadn't seen previous episodes (Particularly The Hand that Rocks the Mabel and Little Dipper ) will have an idea what's going on.
- Brick Joke: The Colombian prison memory. See Continuity Cavalcade...
- Canis Latinicus: Dipper's incantation includes the phrase "Inceptus Nolan Overratus!".
- Care-Bear Stare: Directly parodies Care Bears when Soos shoots a question mark shaped beam from his stomach at Bill:Soos: Soos love stomach beam staaare!!!
- Chekhov's Gun: The NYARF toy gun.
- The bottomless pit.
- Cliffhanger: The episode ends with Gideon destroying the Mystery Shack.
- Cue the Flying Pigs:Stan: Please, the only way Gideon's taking over the shack is by breaking in and stealing my deed.
Wendy: You mean like, right now?
- Continuity Porn: Where does one begin?
- Cutting the Knot: Gideon after seeing Bill's failure, goes to Plan B: "dynamite".
- Darker and Edgier: Definitely the darkest episode in the series up to this point.
- Deal with the Devil: Gideon wanted Bill to go into Stan's mind and get him the combination to Stan's safe. Bill agreed, in return for Gideon's promise to help him with a currently unknown thing.
- Department of Redundancy Department: The memory of Stan describing the bottomless pit.Stan: ...and none more bottomless than the bottomless pit! Which you can see here is bottomless.
- Dream Walker: Bill is this.
- Eldritch Abomination: Bill is also this.
- Establishing Character Moment: Bill's first act upon being summoned is to psychically pull all the teeth out of deer's mouth and offer them to Gideon.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Gideon is horrified at Bill's above mentioned establishing character moment.
- Evil Is Hammy: Bill is extremely cartoony and more or less insane.
- Exact Eavesdropping: Dipper overhears Stan talking about him, but misses a key bit of context.
- I Am Not Left-Handed: Just when Bill seems to be on the ropes during the dream battle, he abruptly decides that they've had enough fun and immediately whites out the dreamscape, in the process nullifying the ability of his opponents to manipulate it to their whims. He then congratulates them for putting up a good fight and warns them that big changes are coming.
- Impact Silhouette: Bill leaves one as he crashes into the shack.
- I Need to Go Iron My Dog: "Non-specific excuse!"
- Insult Backfire: After being called insane by Gideon, Bill replies "Sure I am. What's your point?".
- Journey to the Center of the Mind: Dipper, Mabel, and Soos journey into Grunkle Stan's mind in order to confront Bill Cipher.
- The Mad Hatter:Gideon: Ah! You're Insane!
Bill: Sure I am. What's your point?
- Misery Builds Character:
- Why Stan is so tough on Dipper.
- It's also why Stan's father had him take boxing lessons.
- Once More, with Clarity!: While inside Stan's mind, Dipper sees a memory that has Stan describing him as a loser. Once he sees that memory a second time, it's revealed that Stan was actually recalling how other people used to feel about him.
- Reality Warper: You can do anything you can imagine while inside a dream.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Bill turns bright red when he gets angry.
- Shout-Out: The tag that plays over the end credits is an homage to the Twin Peaks intro.
- Sidetracked by the Analogy:
- When dealing with the bat:Mabel: Remember, bats are more afraid of you than you are of them...Maybe I'm thinking of ducklings...Ducklings. Quack quack! Quack quack quack!
- Later:Soos: Dipper, Stan's personality is one of life's great mysteries. Like whether or not it's possible to lick your own elbow.
Mabel: I bet you can't!
Soos: I bet I can!
- When dealing with the bat:
- Take That!: "Inceptus Nolanus Overratus!"
- Torso with a View: Bill shoots a hole through Dipper's body. He later returns the favor.
- The Unreveal:
- Soos finds a memory in which Stan enters the secret passage behind the snack machine, but closes the door before he can reveal what's behind it.Soos: Boring!
- Whatever Bill wanted Gideon to do for him since the latter canceled the deal.
- Soos finds a memory in which Stan enters the secret passage behind the snack machine, but closes the door before he can reveal what's behind it.
- Vagueness Is ComingBill: A darkness approaches. (conjures an image of the six-fingered hand from the journals above him) A day will come in the future where everything you care about will change.
- Visual Pun: When Bill answer's Gideon's message with a greeting of "Y'ello?", he turns yellow.
- Wham Episode: Oh boy, was it ever! See Cliffhanger...
- What the Hell, Hero?: Soos giver one to Dipper, in his typical "Soos" fashion."Dipper, you're a cool dude, but this isn't cool, dude."
- Xanatos Speed Chess: Gideon performs this after seeing Mabel and Soos in Stan's mind and after Mabel causes Bill to lose the code to the safe; he goes for Cutting the Knot and dynamites Stan's safe.
- You Monster!:Mabel: You leave our uncle's brain alone, you isosceles monster!
- You're Insane!: Gideon, of all people, calls Bill this when he rips a deer's teeth out. Bill doesn't care.