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As a Headscratchers subpage, all spoilers will remain unmarked as per policy. You Have Been Warned.

Monster Blood

  • It said in the first book that the Monster Blood was just a regular toy that Sarabeth cursed, and Aunt Kathryn undid the curse on it, turning it back into a regular toy. So how is it exactly like when Sarabeth cursed it in the sequels?
    • Maybe Sarabeth's spirit is possessing them. The Monster Blood consumed her body in the first book and didn't spit it out, but maybe her soul escaped, and now she's cursing Monster Bloods as she goes.

Let's Get Invisible

  • They continually make a big deal of the younger brother being left-handed, to the point where he's called "Lefty" in the book. How is it that nobody noticed that he was suddenly right-handed before the end of the book/episode? I'm sure he would've had to have used a fork and knife or something like that in the interim. Did he fake being left-handed until he was alone with Max?
    • It means that Lefty got replaced with his mirror counterpart...who can throw right-handed.
      • I probably could have phrased that better...thanks to finding this buried in my bedroom, I remember that in the book there's at least a full day that passes between Lefty being replaced and Max finding out since they're going out for dinner, then the 'contest'(which Mirror Lefty un-cancels) is the next day. So my point here is: how did his parents or Max not realize BEFORE the ending that Lefty was suddenly right-handed. What I mean is: I'm assuming he would've had to eat between those two events, and if he were using a fork and knife, why did no one notice he's using his right hand to cut his food? That's all I meant.
      • Not all food needs to be eaten with a knife and fork. I often eat cereal while holding the spoon in whichever hand is convenient, and the same for popcorn and sandwiches. As for dinners, it's easy to switch hands for cutting when it's something soft or of a consistent cutting difficulty. Heck, it's considered normal in the U.S. to cut with your left hand and eat with your right, and in Great Britain to cut with your right hand then switch the fork over to put the bite in your mouth, so that alone goes to show that if Mirror-Lefty wanted to disguise who he was, he could have just used the other hand. If they had TV Dinners, like at least a few Stine characters have regularly, he wouldn't need a knife even if it was something with a lump- or "fillet"-meat entree instead of something like macaroni or taco salad.
      • In the United Kingdom, we use forks in the left hand and the knife in our right. Switching hands is usually regarded as bad or sloppy manners, and using your cutlery the other way round means you're left-handed. However it is also common to only use your fork in one hand (usually the right) if you're eating something that requires no cutting (like noodles or beans and mash), but usually, it's only done when you're eating alone or in an informal setting. Doing so in a formal setting (like a meal with your family) is considered bad manners. In other words, either the characters are idiots or Lefty is nearly ambidextrous when it comes to things other than writing (as some people are).
      • True...I'm just speaking as someone who always cuts his food with his left hand simply because I'm left-handed and cut better that way; I was just simply wondering if Mirror Lefty had been disguising himself until it was dramatically convenient, so I guess the answer is: yes.
      • I think they just never paid that much attention to what lefty was doing until Max saw him throwing the ball. And in the TV Episode, he disappears on the morning that the climax takes place, so there would be no time to notice.

Curse Of The Mummy's Tomb

  • So what happened to Ahmed? As Poparena points out, he escaped at the end, and while he may be too afraid to go after the heroes again (due to them having the Summoner) nothing is stopping him from killing and mummifying more people, and indeed, the sequel doesn't even bring him up at all. Are we just supposed to assume Uncle Ben called the cops and they caught him shortly after the first book?

Night Of The Living Dummy

  • So, If Lindy was really behind all the bad stuff the dummy was doing in the first half of the book, why does the scene where she discovers the mess in the kitchen which she made (and, keep in mind, this is only a few chapters before the twist) have her reacting with shock and horror at it? I get the impression Stine didn't decide on the twist until he got to that part of the book and realized he still had half the book left to write.
  • Okay, forgive me if this just venting, but why, exactly is Slappy considered the best and most iconic Goosebumps villain? The guy is a little dummy who can't hurt anyone older than 11, consistently gets his ass kicked by little girls(oh man, what a badass villain), his stories are formulaic as hell, and his idea of being "evil" is making lame jokes and getting kids in trouble. Say what you will about the other monsters, at least they all managed to be unique or threatening in some way. Slappy is just a watered-down Chucky who needs to be shoehorned into everything because Stine thinks he's hot shit when he really is not.
    • I think it has to do with the target audience. Kids generally find dolls scary enough to not notice if said doll/dummy isn't too effective. That and Stine seems to just like how rude he is vs his actual threat level. He finds him fun to write, it just doesn't translate to us readers a lot of the time. And to be a bit fair, he only targets kids so I feel he could fur someone older. Adults get caught in the cross-wires in a few of the Slappyworlds, which seem to be working to address some of this. He has freaking laser vision in one of them. So there's that I guess.

The Haunted Mask

  • The shopkeeper tells Carly Beth that the Haunted Mask can only be removed once. Early in the story, Carly Beth puts on the mask and has to pry it off of her face. Doesn't that mean that the mask shouldn't come off at the end of the book?
    • He does say (in the TV version at least, haven't read the book in forever) that a "symbol of Love" can remove the mask at least once more, hence the ending with the bust Carly Beth's mother made. (although it does raise another headscratcher as to how he figured this out)

Why I Am Afraid Of Bees

  • It is never explained how the protagonist suddenly got back in his human body after he died as a bee. What did the heck happen? The hero says he intends to get explanations, but they are never revealed.
    • I guess that the bee dying shocked them all back in their bodies, but the bee ended up sharing Gary's, hence the Twist ending.
    • It was probably Mind Screw, and all in his little phobic mind.
  • When he is stuck as a bee and finally manages to communicate with the employee who transferred his mind in the first place, she doesn't do a damn thing to help him and says she cannot restore him to his original body just because the guy occupying his body doesn't want to leave it. Of course, it can be explained by this mind-swapping company being an underground one that has little to no safety compliance. Anyway, why doesn't the protagonist just ask to have his mind transferred in the other guy's body (which is occupied by the bee's) just as it was meant to in the first place?? Wouldn't it make his life much easier?
    • Perhaps the other guy needs to be hooked up to the machine? After all, we don't know where Dirk even was when the switch began. perhaps he was in another machine somewhere else.
    • Also, Gary probably wanted nothing more to do with these idiots. Their fuck up with the device caused his predicament in the first place, why risk that again? His primary concern was getting back to normal and appreciating his life for what is.
  • Always remember the characters are morons
  • And last but not least, how can he still talk when being a bee? Bees don't have vocal organs, do they?
    • Possibly by modulating the rate at which he was beating his wings. But that’s probably overthinking it.

Deep Trouble

  • What exactly did the merpeople do to Alexander and the other bad guys? They're never mentioned being arrested, and Billy only tells us that Alexander is "gone." Did these guys get drowned and eaten by mermaids?
    • Mermaids do drag their male victims down for a snack, so yeah.

Attack of the Mutant

  • It's implied that the Masked Mutant himself is the one who writes his comics. But if he is indeed a fictional character and is aware of this, it presents a "chicken or egg" question as to which came first, the Mutant or his comics? Also, what about the guy Skipper mentioned as the author of the comics, Steranko? Is he even real, or one of the Mutant's personas, like Libby?
    • It’s possible Steranko was a real person who created the Masked Mutant comics, but somehow The Masked Mutant ended up coming to life and getting rid of him, then started making the comics himself.
  • If Libby was the Masked Mutant in disguise, how did she acquire a house and a massive collection of those comics that Skipper thought were so lame? Did Molecule Man, presumably the Mutant's Dragon, pose as her mom and/or dad?
    • Given that the Mutant is an incredibly powerful and amoral shape-shifter, I don't think it'd be hard for him to just walk to a random house and tell the occupants, "Hey, how about you let me crash here for a few days, and in return, I won't become a giant mantis and eat your heads off?"
    • It's also possible that there was a real Libby, but the Masked Mutant killed her and took her place

My Hairiest Adventure

  • So if all the main characters are dogs who are turned into humans why do they have memories of being a human 12 years or so? Does the serum give them Fake Memories of having been kids? Or did they all first get turned human when they were babies and really have been human for 12 years? and why is the serum not working anymore anyway? Is it like a drug where you get resistant to it if you take it too long?
    • IIRC, Larry says it merely "wore off", and given all the kids starting changing back around the same time, it was likely because they hit human puberty or something.

A Night in Terror Tower

The Cuckoo Clock of Doom

  • The "flaw" in the clock is mentioned before the time travel shenanigans begin before the protagonist starts going back in time. At the end of the book, his father reveals that he's discovered what the flaw is—the year dial is missing a year, namely the one that he knocked off as a baby when he was fixing the clock, and as a result, when things were reset to normal his bratty little sister, born in that year, was never born. But then how was there a "flaw" in the original timeline?
    • Magic, powerful, time-altering clock? It could be that there was a different flaw initially, and the missing year is a new one that replaced the old one.
    • Or perhaps they flaw is simply that years could be knocked off the dial, and that if they were, it would affect the present, too. A potential flaw that became an actual one because of Michael.
  • If removing the year 1996 causes Tara to not be born, does that mean that everything in 1996 never happened? If 1996 never happened, are people aware that 1996 never happened?
  • So, when Michael woke up in 1989, his parents told him that Tara didn't exist. Meaning that she hadn't been born yet. His mother also didn't look at all pregnant, meaning that she hadn't been conceived yet either. This means that Tara hadn't even been conceived yet in 1988. So why did destroying the 1988 year marker make her not be born?
  • Why is Michael the only one who notices time is going backwards? Yes, he's the one that messed with the clock but how would the time-space continuum "know" that?
    • Michael himself triggered the reversal of time, so chances are the cuckoo clock's effects allow the one responsible to be aware while no one else is. And of course, being the only one who notices a problem they (until the 11th hour) seemingly cannot fix adds tension and horror.
  • Why does the backwards time travel keep speeding up as a the book goes along (which happens even faster in the episode)? Other than Rule of Drama and/or Rule of Scary there doesn't seem to be any reason for this.

Night of the Living Dummy II

  • Since Amy has never been a troublemaker before, why is everyone so quick to believe she is guilty. Yes, she did go into Sara's room and didn't explain to Jed why just before her carpet was ruined. But it was Jed's word against Amy's, since no one else witnessed it, and earlier on, he'd painted on Sara's latest picture and ruined it.
  • If Amy had been the one painting on Sara's walls, why are the parents so quick to believe she would paint her name all over the walls and then deny it? It makes no sense that she would react that way. Granted, it doesn't help that she blames Slappy, but they believed it was her before that.
    • Perhaps her parents were just unable to think straight from shock and anger?
  • Why doesn't Slappy just try enslaving Amy, THEN wrecking Sara's room when she refuses?
    • Because Slappy getting his potential slaves framed for his misdeeds would be a faster step towards successful coercion.
  • It isn't explained how Dennis comes to life. Amy had owned him for years, and then he suddenly came to life, attacked Slappy, then disappeared.
    • In the first few books, the kids would always try to take the dummy out by re-reading the words that gave life to the dummy, and it never works. In the first one, Mr. Wood was the villain and Slappy came alive when the girls read the words, and it happens again in this one, as Dennis is the one given life by the words when the girls attempt using them on Slappy.
      • The girls do not try to use the words on Slappy. The protagonists only try this in the first and third books, not the second.

The Barking Ghost

  • The ending makes no sense! I know that Cooper and Fergie end up in the bodies of chipmunks, but how did that happen? I don't think they saw chipmunks enter the Changing Room. Also, the dogs looked at each other, barked like crazy and then ran away. The other Cooper and Fergie, well, told Cooper's parents that it was just an empty shack, while Cooper and Fergie are forced to spend the rest of their lives as chipmunks. Can someone tell me who's who? And also, the first part of the last chapter must have been told in someone else's perspective, but who?

The Horror at Camp Jellyjam

  • My post at Blogger Beware's article for this story: "King Jellyjam just raises too many questions, all of which I asked when reading this book as a grade-schooler. Where did he come from? Just what the hell is he? How is he strong enough to shake the ground when belching? Why the fuck does he sweat snails? If he can't survive without slaves to clean him, how did he exist before he obtained slaves? And being a giant blob monster, how did he get slaves in the first place? Where did he get his crown? If he's made of gelatin, wouldn't sponges and mops just sink into his skin rather than cleaning him? I need to lie down, my head hurts... "
    • According to Word of God, he was created when a camper left a cup of gelatin inside a radioactive cave full of snails.
      • That covers some of it, at least, thank you. But it also raises the question: what was the camp like before his creation? Was it just a normal sports camp?
    • Perhaps he was in a larval stage when he took over the camp. As he matured, so did his stench, but most of the time he had kids cleaning him. By the time they stopped, he died of shock because his lungs had never adapted to the smell. It's also implied he has some kind of telepathic powers.
    • So Camp Jellyjam had kids participate in sports to weed out the most athletic kids and train them to wash King Jellyjam nonstop. But the camp also had things like marbles and chess. How would games like that be relevant to washing a blob monster?

Revenge Of The Lawn Gnomes

  • This is a small thing, but it always bothered me: How come even though Mindy clearly some mental issues, her parents don't seem to notice or give her any treatment for it (that we know)? Said parents aren't portrayed as abusive or neglectful in any way, so I don't get it.
    • In the same vein: Why doesn't her OCD or whatever ever become relevant to the plot at all? You'd think it could work as a Chekovs Skill type thing (such as the gnomes moving random items around in the house to mess with the characters, and only Mindy noticing, and this whole thing being how they are found out to be alive.) Instead, it's just a pointless detail.

Night of the Living Dummy III

  • Can someone explain the ending of the TV episode to me? In the book, Trina gives Slappy to Zane as revenge for getting her and her brother grounded for life, and Slappy winked at her as if to say, "don't worry, I'm going to fuck up his life just like I did yours". But what happens in the TV episode? Does Slappy possess him or something?
    • Slappy possessed him for a time, but he got blown up by lightning after declaring himself invincible. The fact that Zane could turn his head around a'la The Exorcist likely does mean Slappy possessed him after his dummy body was obliterated, since Bride of the Living Dummy ended in a similar manner, which in and of itself presents its Fridge Logic: in the TV show, is Bride an alternate universe, or was Slappy "exorcised" from Zane and into a new dummy body exactly like his old one?

Chicken Chicken

  • Why don't the kids tell their parents about Vanessa, considering they are growing feathers and have other visible deformities? Even if the parents don't believe them that it's a curse cast by a witch, the vast majority of people's response to finding out their kids are growing feathers and other bird parts are going to be to go "what the hell is this?" and seek help right away, not just brush it off like it's nothing.

Don't Go To Sleep!

  • How did Matt cause a reality warp by falling asleep in the guest room when his family has guests sleep there on an annual basis?
    • Matt caused a reality warp because he disobeyed his mom (and, in a sense, his place in reality).
    • Nobody else noticed that reality had changed (except the bad guys), so how do we know there isn't a warp every time someone sleeps in there? Matt wouldn't have realized.
    • I haven't read this one in a while, but didn't reality go back to normal when he went to sleep in his bed? So maybe it's OK to sleep in the reality-warping bed, as long as someone is asleep in the other bed.
      • Reality only gets back to normal when the person who has been sleeping in the reality warp sleeps in his original place. In Matt's reality when he was the eldest, he stated that Pam was sleeping in his old room, so it's pretty clear that he has to be the one sleeping in his room.
  • Watching JonTron review it, made me realize something; If the main Character was altering Reality, enough so that the Reality Police would arrest him and put him on trial, why was he putting himself into situations where he had no idea what he was doing? If I were trying to Alter reality, I would make it so that I could play hockey, or I could perform operations on the brain or the bomb, or I'd be marrying a dream girl or something. I understand he wasn't aware that he was altering reality, but the fact that the Reality around him was warped would mean that he would also be warped to fit that reality, even if he was aware of it. Why was he altering reality into situations where he couldn't do what the "reality" said he could do?
    • He was just warping reality by fluke because he kept sleeping in the wrong bed; that's it. He wasn't in control of anything. Secondly, it wasn't his biggest concern. He just wanted to get back home; and that's all he wanted, so the power potential was never tapped into because it wasn't the focus.
  • He could've easily avoided the plot by wishing he was home again.

The Curse Of Camp Cold Lake

  • What is that on the cover? Della is described as a girl with white-blonde hair, pale skin, who always wears white. Apart from being transparent. Additionally, her eyes are blue, not red. The only other ghost is Briana, who is African-American, with hair in cornrows. The creature on the cover does not appear at any time.
    • Some people have theorized that the creature on the cover was Sarah after Briana killed her.
  • Why didn't Briana try to tell Sarah that Della had been following her around the previous year? If she still wanted Sarah to be her buddy, she could have encouraged Sarah to escape camp via snake-infested woods. Instead, she just left it to fate.
  • If Briana saw Della then it stands to reason that Della saw her. Why didn't she say anything to Sarah?
  • Didn't the counselors think it was weird that Briana was coming to camp again if she died last year?
  • Sarah hugged Briana earlier in the book when she woke up after first meeting Della. Why didn't her arms go through her like when she hugged her at the end?

My Best Friend is Invisible

  • How the hell did the fact that every single character bar the invisible one is naked, gelatinous, multi-limbed, multi-eyed (More than two, I mean), and tentacled not come up in the story before the reveal? They explicitly have a footrace, and that didn't become noticeably different one time!
    • It's a tomato surprise, albeit stupid, but a tomato surprise.
    • The book is also very vague when it comes to describing the characters up until then. Especially their physical appearance.

Perfect School

  • Why does the school personnel keep the original kids alive? From a logistic point of view, it would make more sense to kill them: no money would be wasted to feed them, and there would be no chance of them running away and revealing the secret. They could even be recycled and fed to the clones, to save even more money.
    • Doylist: it's a kid's book. Watsonian: I don't think there is a valid reason, other than maybe if they were ever found out, they would probably be sentenced to death if they just offer a bunch of kids, while if the kids were still alive they probably wouldn't (as the only capital crimes in America are murder and treason.)
    • Black Market Organ harvesting? Gotta make money somehow.

Strained Peas

  • Why does the car of the monsters at the end have a symbol that looks like a military emblem? Is there a nation of monsters, with an army? And why would a family (no matter what species it is) travel in a military car? Did the monsters consider the humans to be so dangerous that they require military escort whenever they have contact with humans?

The Haunted School

  • So a whole class has vanished, and the last place they were seen was posing for a class photo by Mr. Chameleon. And no one working at the school ever put two and two together and tried to track him down? And for that matter, how did the principal not notice that Thalia looked an awful like one of those statutes they have? Speaking of Thalia, how did she sign up for school without a parent? Where is she living? These are the things that keep me up at night.

Return to Ghost Camp

  • Unless there's a limit to the Snatcher's shape-shifting abilities, why does it take the form of a fox to kill its victims? As far as wild, predatory animals go, a fox may be one of the least effective in attacking a human, even if they are preteens. Why not an animal like a bear or a wolf, which couldn't be fought off so easily?

Attack of the Graveyard Ghouls

  • How exactly was Martin Manse able to steal Audra's body? I mean, wouldn't Spenser have seen this happen? After all, Audra did head over with Spenser's parents to free him, and any ghoul would have seen this happen?
    • And how did Audra end up beneath the willow tree from the double tombstone? Ghouls can only go as far aas the wind can take them... Can't they?

Slappy's Nightmare

  • When Jimmy O'James puts the curse on him and tells Slappy that the only way out is he has to do three good deeds in a week or go to sleep forever (which, for Slappy, is equivalent to a death sentence), the exact phrasing is, "You have to do three good deeds - and no evil. If you don't do three good deeds in a week, you will fall asleep and never come to life again." It was made VERY clear that he can't do any evil deeds. No evil. None. So later in the book, Slappy attempts to murder a girl, because he thinks she's standing between him and his life. What was the repercussion for it? Sure, he never got to actually do it, but the fact that he thought about it, planned it, and would have done it if some contrived thing didn't stop him doesn't trigger the curse? Or would that have only been the result if he succeeded?
    • The only other reason I can think of is if Jimmy was there to witness it and end it there, which leads to:
  • Jimmy threatened to be watching his every move (which would have in and of itself ended the book before the halfway point). Where the hell was he, then?
    • Well, what would the mom or neighbors think if they saw some teenage boy randomly stalking the house with two young girls?
  • Despite publication dates, does this book take place before Bride of the Living Dummy? Why else would Slappy still be with Jimmy?
  • Why does Slappy doing good deeds not count if his work is undone? He still cleaned Georgia's room, calmed the kid she was babysitting, and cooperated with her ventriloquist act. The fact that things were done after this that undid his work and that he got the blame should not change the fact that he'd done exactly what the curse required to allow him to stay active. Does he only think his good deeds don't count if no one gets joy from them, or do they truly not count?

Dr. Maniac vs. Robby Schwartz!

  • The Purple Rage decides to help Robby find his brother, Sam, who was kidnapped by Dr. Maniac. The Purple Rage's plan is the following:
    • Step #1 - Feed Robby to scorpions.
    • Step #2 - If Sam sees Robby in danger, he will choose to escape so that he can rescue Robby... Somehow...

Streets of Panic Park!

  • The Menace has the villains of the previous books working for him, promised revenge against the protagonists. Towards the end, they are all assembled in the same place. They include a mummy, to menace Abbey from Who's Your Mummy. Only thing; anyone who read Who's Your Mummy would know that the mummies in that story are NOT villains. You COULD make the argument that the villains were a sort of mummy, but they aren't featured, it's specifically a classic bandaged mummy. I get the idea some Ghost Writing was involved here.
    • Having reread the book a few days ago, I remember reading a line at the beginning of the Enter Horrorland section for "Who's Your Mummy?" That Abby and Peter were still having nightmares about mummies after the incident, which is why Peter didn't join her on the trip to Horrorland. Whether they were a threat to her or not, they clearly traumatized her.
  • The kids were brought to Horror Land because their enemies, the villains of the books, were promised revenge. So, why were Matt and Julie involved? Their 'villains' were a container of Monster Blood and a cursed camera; inanimate objects. Not even sentient inanimate objects! They're never even brought up when the other villains are involved.
    • Abby probably shouldn't be involved either. While she does have a villain representing her book, it falls straight under fridge logic (see above).
    • The Menace specifically needed kids who could survive the fear and face surreal, scary situations that normal kids don't face. Therefore, Abbey, Matt, and Julie still qualify, if only because the Menace needs their fear to bring back Panic Park. More batteries, so to speak.
      • That leaves Robby as the odd man out. His story was all just a webcomic and the only weird thing that happened was Dr. Maniac randomly appearing on his computer at the tail end.

Slappy New Year!

  • There's a scene at a Christmas party with a HUGE family gathering. Ray is trying to put on a show with Slappy, with expected results. His dad tries to take Slappy away, and then Slappy hits him, jumps out of Ray's arms, and runs right for the Christmas tree! Yes, on his own gets down and runs! In a room full of witnesses! How the HELL is Ray still getting the blame for this?! It's obvious he dove at Slappy to stop him (with the poor tree getting taken down in the process).
    • The scene with Slappy and the hedge clippers. There was a garbage man nearby who didn't notice the kids screaming and running from the possessed dummy wielding a dangerous weapon. Or the fact that the kids threw said dummy into his garbage truck to try to get rid of him.
    • The New Year's Eve party. Slappy crashes the party (in a basement, with a lot of paint cans against one wall, which contributes to the mess...) and a lot of kids step in to stop him. And NO ONE thinks to get the parents and show that they aren't responsible for this mess while Slappy's still up and walking? Or even to get a video of a living dummy up and about, since this book takes place in modern-day when a lot of kids have cell phones?
    • The ending. Ray reads the words that brought Slappy to life again to put him back to sleep. In the third book, this didn't work, and Slappy actually laughed in his owners' faces when they tried it. Aside from "new series, new continuity", why does this work now? This is especially frustrating when the Night of the Living Dummy books in both the original series and the 2000 books shared some semblance of continuity, despite being different series.
    • Also on this note, in the show, the words mean, "You and I are one now." Which makes even less sense that this works.
    • Slappy loves screwing with people. He probably planned to let Ray think he was safe for a while before showing himself again and rubbing the kid's helplessness to stop him in his face — true, he usually does that immediately after someone tries reading the words again, but maybe he got bored and decided to take a different approach this time. Ray's mother apparently waking him up again was probably unplanned but affects nothing.
    • The whole book runs on everyone but Slappy holding the Idiot Ball!