While the DiMeos have returned from London, this episode revolves around another theme—Halloween.
The episode kicks off with kids thinking the DiMeo house is haunted and abandoned, which the family quickly disproves to them. While the majority of the time, the cold opens aren’t related to the rest of the episode, this episode is one of the rare exceptions.
The cold open leads to Maya asking Jimmy to make repairs so no more kids think the house is haunted and abandoned. Instead Jimmy decides to embrace it and make the best haunted house in the neighbourhood so the disrepair blends in. Kenneth helps Jimmy make the house scarier than Jimmy set out and even tries to scare the elderly neighbour, Jenkins, who Kenneth hates. However when it’s revealed Jenkins behaviour towards Kenneth saved him from many parking tickets, Kenneth tries to stop the haunted house from scaring him, however Kenneth and Jenkins turn the tables and scare Kenneth. After Jimmy and Jenkins have their fun, Jimmy admits he wants to do the repairs to make the house nice, so Kenneth helps him fix the wiring in the fuse box. Overall I found this subplot amusing but not spectacular.
I found the Dylan-Ray Halloween heist subplot to be the strongest of the episode. The school banning king size candy bars and swapping it out for celery at the school dance doesn’t sound like the strongest subplot on its own, but when you add Dylan and a keen Ray into the mix, it becomes hilarious and well executed. Dylan’s elaborate plans to steal the candy are hilarious but what makes it funnier is the fact that Ray easily gets the candy due to his creepy but typical rapport with the school’s secretaries. However as hilarious as it was, underneath it all, the subplot showed the potential of their secretly strong sibling dynamic as they work well together, and Ray takes a bullet for Dylan and she is grateful in return. Overall I found this to be a strong subplot that perfectly showed another side to Dylan and Ray’s relationship and was accompanied by hilarious one liners.
I felt that the JJ-Maya subplot was a bit weaker than usual. While I liked another appearance of Lee (Zach Anner) and the first appearance of his mother, Helen, I felt that JJ lying to Maya to be more independent wasn’t new. However I did appreciate Maya’s realisation that she has to let JJ be independent and get himself out of messes. I did enjoy the interaction between her and Helen, the latter showing the audience what Maya would be like in about 15 to 20 years if she kept up her tracking ways, and also demonstrating how great minds don’t always think alike. I also appreciated the more subtle moments of the subplot such as Aaron being JJ’s co-director and rescuer at the rave, continuing their friendship which was established last season, and their classmate, Paul’s, attraction to Maya, which quickly ends at the rave when he finds a girl to make out with.
The episode ends with Dylan and Ray giving away the candy bars at the house after Maya picks JJ up from the rave, which perfectly brings all the subplots and the episode to a happy close. Overall this was a good but not great episode with weak A and C stories, but a solid B story.
-Lee is 32.
-Kenneth’s middle name is Ezekiel.
Best one liners and interactions:
- “For the last time, the house is not abandoned, it’s just in a state of disrepair!” (Maya to the kids who sneak in the house because they think it’s haunted and abandoned)
- “Moms right?” “No, my mom’s nothing like that.” (JJ-Aaron on Maya’s behaviour while they are filming)
- “If you can’t trust a guy who tasered your mom in a parking lot two years ago, who can you?” (Lee to JJ)
- “Crunchy water that’s only good for losers and turtles!” (Dylan describing celery to JJ)
- “You’d crack under pressure like a Ray under pressure.” (Dylan to Ray on why she hasn’t asked him to join her on her king size candy bar heist)
- “This is the guy that tasered Maya?….It’s an honour!” (Kenneth to JJ on Lee, then introducing himself to Lee)
- “I need the school’s air duct plans but the secretaries know I’m up to no good…I have a past.” (Dylan to Ray)
- “Secretaries love me, the only thing in them I don’t arouse is suspicion.” (Ray to Dylan on his success in getting the school’s air duct plans)
- “No time for misplaced hormones Paul!” (Maya to JJ’s classmate, Paul, who is attracted to her)
- “That is the weirdest phrase to ever make me happy.” (Maya to Helen when the latter explains her plan to keep an eye on Lee and JJ at the rave)
- “As a brother and friend, you have potential.” (Dylan to Ray)
- “Without the hat, you’re just a guy in a great dress!” (Mr Powers to himself on his Wicked Witch of the West costume)