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Western Animation / Brady's Beasts

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A Canadian-French-British animated series, which debuted in 2005 on YTV, about the adventures of 12-year-old Brady Plunkett, who lives in a world where monsters are commonplace and make popular household pets. Brady is the local monster expert in the town of Ravenville; whenever there's a monster problem, be it a rampaging dragon or just a yeti who keeps getting into people's garbage cans, he's the guy you want.

Brady often enlists help from his best friend, 12-year-old Virgil Arp, which Virgil isn't too happy about. Occasionally, he'll also call upon the services of their other friend, 13-year-old Ember Tombs, another monster-lover with a style of dress that suits her name well.

A recurring plot point is Brady's search for his own pet monster, who goes missing in the first episode after being chased off by townspeople.

The series is based on the book How to Care for Your Monster by Norman Bridwell, author of Clifford the Big Red Dog.

The official website hosted a point-and-click Adventure Game called Monster Quest in which the player controls Brady, wandering around the town of Ravenville to solve puzzles and complete a series of quests.

Tropes from the show:

  • Adults Are Useless: Most adults have a close-minded attitude towards monsters, or are just plain incompetent when it comes to dealing with them.
  • Alliterative Title: Brady's Beasts
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Marvin and Gaye have pale purple skin, but they seem to be unique in this regard.
  • Ambiguously Bi: Brady's monster. She is a mother to a baby who appears to be genetically related to her, and at the end of "How to heal a Howler's heart", she joins the crowd of smitten monsters who arrive to admire the (female) Howler, with Brady remarking, "No way, even my monster?"
  • Big Red Devil: Brady's monster has features evocative of a devil — bat wings, a pointed tail, and cloven hooves.
  • Bratty Teenage Daughter: Arlene, Brady's older sister, is the stereotypical bratty teen girl, always talking on the phone and turning up her nose at her brother.
  • Breath Weapon: Brady's monster's baby breathes fire.
  • Butt-Monkey: Virgil tends to get the short end of the stick in monster encounters. It doesn't help that he's terrified of them.
  • Celibate Hero: Brady. In his words, "What 12-year-old needs a girlfriend when you can have a monster?"
  • Comforting Comforter: At the end of episode 1, Brady falls asleep in his bed and his monster's hand reaches in from offscreen to pull the blanket up over him.
  • Cowardly Sidekick: Brady often enlists help from Virgil with monster stuff. Virgil is terrified of monsters, and will often try to run away from them.
  • Creepy Twins: Marvin and Gaye, Brady's younger siblings. They never talk except for quiet giggling, and are uniquely purple-skinned.
  • Dark World: Crowtown appears to be a dark parallel-world-version of Ravenville, but it's actually a mundane neighbouring town that just happens to look like a darker, mirror-flipped version of Ravenville.
    Stitch: Everything the same... but different.
    [pan up to a backwards "Pet Shop" sign above him]
  • The Drag-Along: Virgil is always getting enlisted by Brady to help with monster stuff, despite usually being terrified of the monsters they meet. Brady, for the most part, seems oblivious to his fear.
  • The Faceless: Brady's monster. Its face is always concealed by the hood of the cloak it wears; the most that's seen of it is its eyes and open mouth.
  • Failure Is the Only Option: Brady just can't ever get his first monster back, huh?
  • Female Monster Surprise: Brady starts the series referring to his monster with male pronouns, but in "How to Raise a Hatchling", the monster leaves its egg in Brady's care, and he realizes that it's female. Likewise, when the egg hatches, he first refers to the baby with male pronouns, but Ember later identifies it as female.
  • Goth: Ember's appearance — she dresses in dark clothes, has pale skin and dark hair, and wears dark lipstick.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: All the episodes are titled "How to..." followed by something related to the plot, except for the first episode, "How the monsters came to Ravenville".
  • Idiosyncratic Wipes: Scene transitions include: bats flying across the screen, and a monster face opening its mouth.
  • Improvised Armour: In the first episode, Brady's dad puts on sports gear as armor.
  • Improvised Weapon: In the first episode, Brady's dad arms himself with a baseball bat and a whisk.
  • In the Hood: Brady's monster is always wearing a face-concealing hood.
  • Monster Mash: All kinds of Halloween-type monsters can be found around Ravenville, such as zombies, mummies, werewolves, and vampires.
  • Murder Water: The Loch Ness Monster is revealed to actually be sentient water.
  • Nightmare Fetishist: Pretty much any kid who likes monsters technically qualifies as one of these. Ember is a more obvious example.
  • Opaque Lenses: Virgil's glasses have dark lenses like sunglasses and don't show his eyes.
  • Pet Monstrosity: Monsters are kept as pets.
  • Poster-Gallery Bedroom: Brady's room includes monster- and creature-themed decor, reflecting his interests.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Brady's monster's eyes look yellow from a distance, but are red closer up.
  • The Scrooge: Brady's dad. His money-saving ideas tend to inconvenience the rest of the family.
  • Security Cling: In the opening sequence, when the monsters approach in the graveyard, Virgil runs and leaps into Brady's arms.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: Brady's monster returns to the house at the end of "How to Find Your Missing Monster", but at that point the family drive her away, assuming her to be someone trying to buy the house. Episodes after this one make it clear that Brady regrets this.
  • Split-Screen Phone Call: In the opening sequence, Brady calls up Virgil and Ember and the screen divides into three sections to show each of them on the phone.
  • The Spook: Brady's monster. It has no known name or species and is only known to the audience as "Brady's (missing) monster". Its full appearance is also unknown as it wears a face-concealing hood, and only some bits of information about it are revealed throughout the series. As the official website says:
    The identity and appearance of this creature is kept a mouth-watering mystery... but we do get tantalizing, comedic bits of insight as to what this thing might look like through Brady's attempts to describe it to potential witnesses. And the perpetually unseen picture he passes around gets consistently alarmed responses. It’s a running gag which is perhaps best paid off in the imagination of our viewers.
  • Tertiary Sexual Characteristics: In "How to Raise a Hatchling", when the hatchling is revealed to be female, she flutters her eyelids, temporarily gaining eyelashes. And when she turns up in Brady's room again at the end of the episode, she's wearing a pink bow on her head.
  • Toothy Bird: The hatchling has a beaklike mouth with teeth.
  • The Voiceless: Marvin and Gaye, who seem to work on Twin Telepathy.
  • Your Tomcat Is Pregnant: Brady realizes his monster is female when she leaves her baby in his care.
    Brady: My monster had a baby. He's a she! A monster mom!

Tropes from the Monster Quest game:

  • Collection Sidequest: There are 54 hidden cards throughout the game that are optional to find.
  • Lock and Key Puzzle: Brady has to find the combination to his dad's safe.
  • Save Point: To save the game, the player must return to Brady's room, click on his computer, and use the 'save game' function.