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Monster High: Haunted

River asks what brings them here, and Draculaura explains her hauntings. River finds that impossible, as there hasn't been a haunting since the notorious Red Lady, a ghost who could move easily between the Ghost and Monster (solid) worlds, until she was apprehended and imprisoned to work off her crimes. The boat falls prey to a pirate ship, the Salty Spectre, led by the ghost pirate Vandala Doubloons and her pet cuttlefish Aye. However, Vandala becomes seasick and fears the "solids," residents of the monster world. Dressing in reaper robes, the ghouls enter the school (although the doors must be opened instead of phased through due to the ghouls being solid and not ghosts).

Monster High: Haunted

To get back into the ghost world, Twyla takes them to the Boogey Mansion to look for the right Boogey Sand to turn them into ghosts so they can move around the ghost world undetected, especially since she knows which Boogey Sand will return them to their normal selves afterward. In the process, Rochelle is accidentally turned into a blob monster before Clawdeen sneezes the right powder over them, and they turn into ghosts, although floating is harder than it looks.

Parents need to know that Monster High: Haunted is another animated DVD entry in the popular Mattel franchise about assorted teen monsters, vampires, ghosts, and so on. The doe-eyed, curvy high school "ghouls" in iffy costumes haven't changed, but the emphasis is on character, diversity, and some straightforward issues that affect real-world high school kids today -- in this instance, careless blogging, rumor-mongering, and gossip. Other than some spooky music, eerie sounds, and an appropriately evil school principal with a mysterious past who likes to keep kids in detention by chaining them, there's nothing really scary or intense. Kids who are comfortable with real vs. pretend violence should have no problem here. With this DVD, fans who enjoy the otherworldly aspects of the stories will be introduced to a new high school filled with a variety of ghosts, both heroic and wicked. And, of course, Mattel encourages those fans with many new dolls and toys on their already considerable list of products.

Something strange is going on at school in MONSTER HIGH: HAUNTED. While the ghostly Spectra Vondergeist (voiced by Erin Fitzgerald) is desperately looking for material for her gossipy blog, Draculaura (Sue Swan) is sure she's being haunted. Confiding her fears to Spectra, Draculaura is stunned to learn there's a secret world with another school very close by: Haunted High, populated entirely by ghosts. Spectra has never told anyone before, but now she's sure someone there can help. And maybe she'll find the story she's been looking for; after all, there hasn't been a haunting in ages, not since the Legend of the Red Lady roamed the spirit world. When Spectra sets off for Haunted High and doesn't return, Draculaura enlists the help of her ghoul friends, and they go after their missing friend. Haunted High is more frightening than they could have imagined. They're in danger of being captured by Principal Revenant, desperate to fit the intruders with "detention chains" and keep them forever. Using the magical powers of her three evil Hall Moanitors and by starting a hateful rumor about the ghouls from Monster High, Revenant succeeds in her evil plan. But help is only a whisper away; two Haunted High students, Portergeist (a handsome painter ghost who finds Spectra very appealing) and Kiyomi Haunterly have special powers, too. Together with their new friends, Draculaura and her buddies face off against Principal Revenant. Will they unearth the mystery of the strange new haunting? Will they escape and return to their beloved school?

Spectra's school reunion.Draculaura's being haunted, and Spectra is really confused as to why. See, all the teen ghosts are still at Haunted High since she's left, so how would they be haunting anyone? Confused, she returns to the ghost realm (or is yanked back there) to investigate. The ghouls see her taken away, and after getting Boogie Sand (which transforms monsters to ghosts) from Twyla, they follow Spectra to the realm.

  • A Day in the Limelight: Spectra mostly, but also Scarah, Operetta, and Johnny to a much lesser extent.

  • Ascended Extra: Johnny Spirit makes his second appearance in all canon (and first appearance in CG) here.

  • An Aesop: Gossiping and spreading rumors is bad.

  • Only you can take responsibility for your actions, avoiding doing so will not only make you suffer longer, but also make others suffer with you.

  • Assimilation Plot: A variant; Principal Revenant's Evil Plan is to pass off all her detention chains onto the ghost students for her freedom. To speed this up, she plans to invade Monster High and convert it's student body into ghosts for more bodies to chain up.

  • Bedsheet Ghost: There is a floating bedsheet ghost as a teacher.

  • Big Bad: Principal Revenant, or The Red Lady.

  • Bizarrchitecture: The Boogeymansion has an interior with incongruent dimensions, stairs that lead to random places and doors that act like portals. The entrance, covered with doors of all shapes and sizes, separates Sirena from the group behind one too small to go through even though she entered right behind them. It basically has all the disorienting logic you'd expect in a kind of nightmare.

  • Blob Monster: Rochelle Goyle is temporarily turned into one when Sirena accidentally drops the wrong kind of Boogie Sand on her.

  • Chained by Fashion: This special really emphasizes chains as a common accessory for ghosts. When Spectra goes to the Spirit World, and the ghouls are turned into ghosts, they all gain new outfits that heavily feature chains as accessories. New ghost characters also have chains accessorizing their looks, and the conflict of the plot involves chaining ghosts as punishment.

  • Dance Party Ending: Of the Haunted High and Monster High students intermingling.

  • How Do I Shot Web?: As ghosts the ghouls all have trouble figuring out how to fly and struggle to keep from drifting through walls or spinning in place.

  • Hybrid Power: Sirena exploits her half-ghost half-mermaid scaritage to perform a complicated diving routine in reverse.

  • In the Hood: The ghouls do this in Haunted High to pass as ghosts. It fails.

  • Kirk Summation: Spectra gives one of these to Revenant after her plan's revealed to be ineffective. It summarizes what she's doing as wrong so well it leads her to a Heel Realization.

  • Muggles: The ghost mentality towards non-ghost monsters resembles this, only they call them "solids".

  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Principal Revenant. The can is the school Haunted High, having been converted from her house.

  • Ship Tease: Between Spectra and Porter.

  • Supernormal Bindings: The plot device du jour are Detention chains, supernatural chains that can bind and anchor ghosts to a location. They can't be destroyed, only moved to another victim using a special key and are meant to be worked off as punishment. The ghost they originate from can generate more chains, lengthening their sentence, by avoiding responsibility for their punishment and trying to work around redeeming themselves of it.

  • The Grim Reaper: Not here, but his daughter is.

  • Our Ghosts Are Different: Different kinds of ghosts are discussed by Spectra, using students from Monster High as examples like a wraith, banshee or phantom. Operetta is an interesting example, as a phantom, because she is the least obviously ghost-like with the only sign she counts as one being susceptibility to detention chains.


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