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Trivia / Are You Afraid of the Dark?

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  • Cast the Runner-Up: Ryan Gosling was in the running to play Gary, but he was committed to The Mickey Mouse Club at the time. He later ended up appearing in a guest role in "The Tale of Station 109.1" as Jamie.
  • Channel Hop:
    • The original series, as well as the 1999 revival, was produced by Cinar. The 2019 revival's first season was produced by WildBrain, with ACE Entertainment taking over for the second season.
    • In Canada, the original series was first broadcast on the Family Channel before switching to YTV for the remainder of its run. After that, the Family Channel broadcast the series' 1999 revival.
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  • Creator's Favorite Episode: DJ McHale cites "The Tale of the Midnight Madness" as his favourite.
  • Creator's Pest: DJ McHale had little interest in writing the wraparound segments, finding the actual stories to be more interesting. Despite him making them as short as possible, he was surprised when the Midnight Society became popular with viewers.
  • Dawson Casting: Jennifer Irwin (later of Still Standing) plays it straight by a year in "The Tale of Locker 22", as Irwin was 18 in 1993 and her character Candy Warren was 17 when she died in 1968. It is inverted near the end when, thanks to a little life-saving time-tinkering, she grows up to be a 42-year-old principal at high school (even though the actress who played her was still 18 at the time).
  • Doing It for the Art: "The Tale of the Pinball Wizard" was so hard to film, creator DJ McHale had to beg the crew to break union rules and work for an extra day to get it finished.
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  • Dueling Shows: With R.L. Stine's Goosebumps. Are You Afraid of the Dark? tends to be more well-known, though Goosebumps has the book series to fall back on. AYAOTD also had a book series, but those were tie-ins to the TV show and not remembered as much now. As one reviewer put it, Goosebumps tended to be lighthearted, but most books ended with a Downer Ending (the TV adaptation sometimes toned this down.) Are You Afraid of the Dark? was the opposite: episodes tended to be creepy as sin until the end, with most episodes having a happy ending. Hilariously, in a combination of the anthology nature of the series and Canadian acting unions, many Canadian child actors who appeared in the tales would later play characters in Goosebumps (such as Ryan Gosling, who was on Are You Afraid of the Dark's "The Tale of Station 109.1" and the TV adaptation of the Goosebumps book "Say Cheese and Die"note ).
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  • Fake Brit: Hermione in "The Tale of the Walking Shadow" was played by Northern Irish actress Sheena Larkin. Notably when she previously appeared in "The Tale of the Lonely Ghost", she used her own accent.
  • Fake Nationality: American Joanna Garcia regularly commuted from Florida to play Sam on the show. Added to that, American actors often guest starred in the stories, usually a child or teen star that was popular at the time (some examples include Melissa Joan Hart, Tatyana Ali, Tia and Tamera Mowry, etc).
  • Hostility on the Set: Mildly with Bobcat Goldthwait, who played the Sandman in "The Tale of the Final Wish", because he had a lot of trouble remembering his lines.
  • International Coproduction: The show was a co-production with Nickelodeon in America and YTV in Canada.
  • Making Use of the Twin: "The Tale of the Chameleons" which gives its protagonist a clone impersonator, uses identical twins Tia and Tamera Mowry.
  • Money, Dear Boy: David was Put on a Bus in Season 3 because Nathaniel Moreau had salary disputes with the producers.
  • The Other Marty: Everyone except Ross Hull was recast after the initial unaired pilot. Even so, Ross played Frank in that before getting changed to Gary.
  • Playing Their Own Twin: In "The Tale of the Quicksilver", Tatyana Ali of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air played a girl whose twin sister (also played by Ali) died trying to get rid of a demon spirit known as the eponymous Quicksilver.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: Kristen's departure and the introduction of Sam as a replacement was because Rachel Blanchard personally called the producers and said she didn't want to come back.
  • Referenced by...: The collective of creators that includes Myuuji and Mr. Creepypasta, amomg others, calls itself "The Midnight Society."
  • Serendipity Writes the Plot: Whenever a new season was greenlit, DJ McHale asked the location scout to show him all the cool places in Montreal - and would then write stories centered around these locations.
  • Troubled Production: Any episode that had scenes in a forest - as they were shot in an arboretum. Due to it being a protected wildlife area, they couldn't use pesticides for mosquito control. As such, many takes were used solely because they were the only ones where the child actors weren't swatting away bugs.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • The original format would have an older man telling stories to children, called Bedtime Stories for Lazy Parents. However, since the majority of stories were scary, they felt children would be less intimidated by having other kids tell the stories instead.
    • Following on from the above, the stories would have just been physically told at first. But then they decided it would be more exciting and interesting to show the stories as they were told.
    • Aron Tager (Dr. Vink) and Richard M. Dumont (Sardo) were only supposed to appear in one episode each. However, they impressed producers enough to make them recurring characters.
    • A film adaptation was planned in 1998, starring the second cast of the Midnight Society. Nickelodeon asked for the script to be toned down and made less dark, and ended up cancelling it altogether.
  • Working Title: The original title was Scary Tales as a pun on Fairy Tales, but Nickelodeon execs didn't like it.
  • You Look Familiar:
    • Dr. Vink is played by Aron Tager, who played several other characters in the early episodes.
    • Sheena Larkin plays Nanny in "The Tale of the Lonely Ghost" and Hermione in "The Tale of the Walking Shadow".
    • "Lonely Ghost" also features Bethanny Nurse as part of the Girl Posse. She'd later have the lead role of Stacy in "The Tale of the Closet Keepers".
    • And a hat trick of "Lonely Ghost" actors doing this, Laura Bertram was Amanda there and Laurel in "Mystical Mirror".
    • Christian Tessier appears in both "Laughing in the Dark" and "The Curious Camera".
    • Jewel Staite plays Kelly the Alpha Bitch in "Watcher's Woods" and then Cody in "The Unfinished Painting".
    • Jay Baruchel has a small role as Joe in "Dead Man's Float" before appearing in bigger roles in "Zombie Dice" and "Walking Shadow".
    • Samantha Chemerika played the Jill in "The Tale of the Final Wish" and Sharon in "The Tale of the Chameleons".

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