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Film / Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween

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Viewer Beware, You're In For Another Scare...
Sarah: You discovered a walking, talking dummy... and you didn't tell me?
Sonny: Okay, well, he seemed like a really nice guy at the start.

Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween is a 2018 Urban Fantasy Comedy Horror film and a sequel to Goosebumps. Ari Sander (The Duff) is at the director's chair, replacing Rob Letterman. The film stars Jack Black, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Caleel Harris and Madison Iseman. The film was released on October 12th, 2018.

When two kids, Sonny Quinn (Taylor) and Sam Carter (Harris) end up uncovering a secret book, "Haunted Halloween", from R.L. Stine's long-abandoned house, curiosity causes them to unlock it. This ends up releasing all of the monsters that R.L. Stine wrote about, so they, along with Sonny's older sister, Sarah (Iseman), must work together to return the monsters back to fiction and save their neighbourhood.

Previews: Trailer.

Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween contains examples of:

  • Abandoned Area: R.L. Stine's childhood home.
  • Aborted Arc: The Invisible Boy, who was established to have escaped in the first film's ending, doesn't show up in this one.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy: Slappy is portrayed much more sympathetically than in the first movie, or any of the books. Here he only wants a family of his own and genuinely was nice to Sonny and Sam at first before they tried to kill him. He even isn't a Bad Boss to Walter and seems to love his "mother".
  • Adaptational Wimp: The Haunted Mask is much less frightening here than in the source material, merely turning the wearer into a henchmen for Slappy, rather than supplanting their personality. Justified, as this version isn't the genuine Haunted Mask, but a halloween mask brought to life by Slappy.
  • Adults Are Useless: Neither Cathy nor Walter, the two adults with the most screen time, does much to affect the story, beyond eventually becoming unwitting henchmen for Slappy. Even R.L. Stine only arrives after the kids have already defeated Slappy themselves. The exception is Mr. Chu, who provides Sonny, Sarah and Sam with Halloween costumes which help them infiltrate the Tesla Tower undetected.
  • Artifact of Doom: The most dangerous book in R.L. Stine's collection: "Haunted Halloween".
  • Ascended Extra: Subverted. The Haunted Mask appeared in the first film as an easy to miss background monster. In this film it's among the Goosebumps costumes that Slappy brings to life - but upon attaching itself to a host, transforms them entirely into a monster.
  • Ask a Stupid Question...: When the protagonists bump into R.L. Stine for the first time, and ask him if he is who they think he is:
    Stine: No, I'm Dr. Seuss. R.L. Stine was unavailable. Yes, of course, I'm R.L. Stine!
  • Asshole Victim: Slappy sure knows how to give Tommy and Tyler their just desserts.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: The balloon spider.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: Downplayed. While the kids succeeded in stopping Slappy from destroying the city of Wardenclyffe, he got a consolation prize in trapping Stine in a new Goosebumps book he made, finally getting his revenge for being trapped in a manuscript for so long.
  • Bears Are Bad News: The gummy bears, which can combine into larger bears capable of absorbing people whole.
  • Berserk Button: Slappy gains two new ones:
    • He wants a family. Anyone who messes with those he's claimed as part of his family has misfortune befall them.
    • He rather likes his name. Don't call him anything other than Slappy, and especially not Bobo.
  • Big Bad: Slappy again.
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: The balloon spider, again.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Subverted. Slappy did seem to genuinely want to be in the family and he only used his powers to hurt bad people. He only tries to bring Halloween alive after the kids try to kill him.
  • Body Horror: Slappy turns Walter, the grocery man, into a monster, and turns Sonny and Sarah's mom into an actual dummy. He even talks for her.
  • Broken Masquerade: This film reveals that while the existence of R.L. Stine's creations was exposed to Madison due to their rampage across the town, the government covered it up claiming the destruction was caused by strange weather patterns.
  • Brother–Sister Team: Sonny and Sarah.
  • The Cavalry Arrives Late: By the time Stine manages to drive out to the town and find the protagonists, they've already saved the day.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The Frankenstein book. Sarah switches it with Stine's book to defeat Slappy.
  • Cliché Storm: Invoked by Stine, who critiques his own early writing as this when he sees all the Halloween decorations running amok.
  • Comedic Underwear Exposure: Slappy repeatedly causes Tommy Madigan's pants to fall down when defending Sonny and Sam.
  • Continuity Nod: The events of the first film are referenced when the kids investigate Slappy. They read on a conspiracy theory website that government agents covered it up as "weather phenomenon".
  • Creative Closing Credits: Features a sequence of the monsters scaring.
  • Creator Cameo: The real R.L. Stine appears as Sarah's principal.
  • Dem Bones: Quite a few skeletons, particularly the bride and groom.
  • Demonic Dummy: Guess who.
  • Demoted to Extra:
    • R.L. Stine has a much smaller role than in the previous film, to the point that his actor is not even credited.
    • The Abominable Snowman and Werewolf return from the first movie, but only to serve as guards for Slappy's lair.
  • Disappeared Dad: It's unknown what happened to Sonny and Sarah's father.
  • Dynamic Entry: After being sealed inside a suitcase, Slappy makes his return by skydiving onto Sarah's car.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Sarah, Sam, and Sonny have to figure out how to defeat the monsters without Stine's help, save Sonny and Sarah's mom, and take down Slappy. Sarah had to go through this to get something to write for her college application essay.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • The Tesla tower. Ben's model destroys his classroom. Slappy uses the real one to amplify his magic and bring Halloween to life.
    • Slappy's Mook Maker power. You'll notice that things affected by his power completely vanish into the Haunted Halloween book. No, it doesn't just take the "essence" of Halloween and leave behind decorations or gummy bears: it takes everything affected completely, leaving no trace of the original thing behind. No gummy bears, no plastic skeletons, nothing. Why is this important? Because so long as Slappy is affecting it, it will completely disappear into the book; therefore, the one final book, the one he wrote himself to trap Stine in, actually works.
  • Goofy Print Underwear: When Slappy repeatedly pantses the bully Tommy Madigan, it is revealed that Tommy wears blue boxer shorts with bananas on them.
  • Joker Immunity: Lampshaded. In the closing minutes of the movie, Slappy shows up in Stine's home, and mocks him for this trope.
    Slappy: You know I always survive. You wrote me that way!
  • Killer Rabbit: Killer gummy bears!
  • Manipulative Bastard: Slappy shows shades of this to convince Sonny and Sam to be his "brothers" in the family he wants.
  • Mind over Matter: Slappy has the power of telekinesis.
  • Mook Maker: Slappy has the power to give life to inanimate objects, even generating whole bodies for things like Halloween masks.
  • Mythology Gag: The Tesla Tower scenario is lifted from the Give Yourself Goosebumps book, Into the Jaws of Doom.
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: Slappy can now make mooks and has telekinesis. Justified in that this Slappy is from an earlier book that was never published, compared to his published books that were edited and made it to print.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    Sonny: *after learning about Tyler's accident* What else did you complain about?
    Sarah: ...Mom.
  • People Puppets: Slappy does this to Sonny and Sarah's mom.
  • Post-Modern Magik: Slappy uses the invocation that he uses to animate objects on Tesla's defunct electricity transmitting tower to activate it and bring all the Halloween decorations in town to life.
  • Pumpkin Person: This one has a body that looks like it's made of pumpkin vines.
  • Recursive Canon: When Sonny is on the "Stine Appreciation Society" website, a picture of a box-set of Goosebumps reprints is on it. These have text on them that says "Now a major motion picture". This is visible, somehow implying the first film exists in this universe.
  • Sequel Hook: The movie ends with Slappy directly telling Stine, "You know I always survive. You wrote me that way!" before revealing he wrote a book of his own with Stine as the main character, and trapping him inside.
  • Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer: R.L. Stine only appears in this TV spot.
  • Tempting Fate: At one point, Sonny and Sam encounter moving gummy bears. Sam ends up accidentally using this trope twice.
    Sonny: They're moving.
    Sam: They're so tiny and cute. What could they possibly do?
    (the gummy bears then combine together to form larger versions of themselves)
    Sam: Sonny, they're just gummy bears!
    (each gummy bear then has a Kubrick Stare and show pointed teeth, before jumping towards the two)
  • Tesla Tech Timeline: Slappy's plot amounts to combining Tesla's old Wardenclyffe Tower with Magitek to increase the power of his spell.
  • Title Drop: It's the name of the hidden book of R.L. Stine.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Slappy now has the power to bring inanimate objects to life, also effectively giving him telekinesis as well. Justified, as he's the first version of Slappy that Stine wrote when he was a vengeful teenager working out his frustrations through his writing.
  • Transformation of the Possessed: The animated goblin mask transforms the human Walter into a hunchbacked goblin.
  • Twist Ending: Slappy survived his defeat. And he took residence in Stine's house. While writing a new book with Stine himself as the star. Hey, what did you expect from a Goosebumps entry?
  • Uncool Undies: When bully Tommy Madigan is repeatedly pantsed by Slappy, it is revealed that he's wearing blue boxers with bananas on them.
  • Villain Teleportation: Slappy is able to go wherever he wants in a flash. You can't go to another room and expect him to stay put, and locking him in a suitcase, chaining it shut, and throwing it in the lake won't work, either.