YMMV / The Spiderwick Chronicles

  • Complete Monster: Mulgarath is an arrogant, cunning Ogre who was directly or indirectly responsible for nearly all problems that befell Spiderwick/Grace family. He spent decades trying to obtain Arthur Spiderwick’s field guide, to use its information to fulfil his desires to conquer mankind and the other fairies. To try and obtain the book, Mulgarath had Lucinda Spiderwick kidnapped, then tortured. When she was unable to produce the book, Mulgarath personally crippled her. In preparation for his plans Mulgarath built himself an army held together by intimidation, including press-ganged goblins; acquired several dragons; and played on the Dwarfs love of metal and craftsmanship to convince them to build weapons for his army and to swear their eternal allegiance to him. Mulgarath rewarded this service by massacring all of the Dwarfs the moment they gave him the weapons. Upon learning that Jared Grace had found the guide, Mulgarath turned his attention upon the Grace siblings, happy to kidnap and kill the children to gain the guide, his plots climaxing in him destroying their family home and kidnapping their mother. Ambitious and vain as he was, Mulgarath was also a sadistic beast, as inside his palace the Grace siblings found multiple fairies he had imprisoned in honey and left to struggle futilely as they slowly drowned.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: In book 2 of ''Beyond The Spiderwick Chronicles, Laurie explains that she lies because "lying works," and nothing in the story contradicts this claim. This, from a book aimed at 6-12 year olds.
  • Nightmare Fuel: A fair amount.
    • Mulgarath and his unnatural eyes is an incredibly nasty customer in just about any of his forms, though his native (ogre) form wins the prize for sheer ugly. The goblins and trolls aren't exactly going to win any beauty contests, either.
    • "Click klack; watch your back"
    • The Banshee from the field guide.
    • The field guide terrified this troper as a child, especially the troll descriptions. The book is probably what gave me my fear of The Fair Folk.
    • Anytime a character has to face goblins or other unfriendly without the stone or hobgoblin spit to let them see them
    • The fairies drowning in honey in the last book. Jared saves a few but is traumatized by the experience.
    • The third book introduces Unicorns to the series, something which would be wonderful if it weren't for the fact that the unicorn in question shows Mallory and Jared a vision of why there are so few unicorns (and faeries in general) left: human hunters killing them for their pelts and horns. This is described in an incredible amount of detail for a children's book.