|The Tale of the Walking Shadow|
|Season 6, Episode 9|
|Air date||April 10, 1999|
|Written by||Matthew Cope|
|Directed by||Lorette LeBlanc|
The Tale of the Wisdom Glass
The Tale of Oblivion
Tale of the Walking Shadow, is the Ninth episode of Season Six of Are You Afraid of the Dark?, as well as the Seventy-Fourth episode in total.
That night, Andy, Tucker, Vange and Quinn are snacking on popcorn and drinking soda. Megan is walking around and she explains that people have been telling ghost stories forever. We can read about them and watch them in movies and on T.V. Also we hear about them from our friends just like they do. Andy with his mouth full says he loves ghost stories. Megan tells him that everyone does, and asks him if he knows why? Quinn runs over and says because they're scary, and people like getting scared.
Megan asks him what makes them scary. Vange says that everything about them makes them scary cause they're ghosts. Megan says no, there is another reason. Think about it, even though every ghost story is different, they're all really about the same thing. Tucker says "Yeah scaring people",
Megan says no, they're actually about unfinished business. All ghosts walk the earth for the same reason. Because there's something they still want to do or need to do when they were still alive; but didn't get the chance to. Then there's the mystery, is the ghost here to do something friendly? Or is it here to create some unspeakable evil? We never know until the ghost arrives, and that's what makes it scary!
Megan throws in the campfire dust to make the fire more intense while she submits her story for the approval of The Midnight Society. She calls her story "The Tale of the Walking Shadow" and begins her story.
Megan, tells the story. The story is about a group of students from Greenwich High School. preparing to put on a performance of the Shakespearean play Macbeth. The local theater is preparing for the students to do the play. Then an elderly theater employee named Gwen is carrying some costumes pieces. When suddenly, something catches her eye. She looks scared and screams "You!", Backing away terrified. Suddenly a longsword comes crashing down from the ceiling. The sword just misses her and she runs off screaming.
The story focuses on a teeanger named Ross Doyle, he had a crush on Vanessa. Therefore to spend more time with her, and get to know her better, he auditioned for the school play, never thinking he would get a part. But to his surprise he did, he was in trouble because he felt he wasn't a much of an actor. So now he was stuck performing on stage in front of a ton of people. When all he wanted was to go on a date with her. Ross meets with Vanessa at a coffee shop to discuss the play. Ross tells her about how nervous he is because he's never done it before and he's afraid he might mess it all up.
Vanessa gives him advice, she tells him to the best thing to do, is to just forget about acting and picture yourself actually being the character. The example she does, is the scene where Lady Macbeth thinks she sees blood on her hand. She holds out her hand and begins to focus. Then a red drop actually falls on it and she reacts and screams. Turns out it's just from cast member Jesse, who walked up to them and dripped ketchup on her to tease her. Jesse who is arrogant and stuck up, Jesse who got the lead of Macbeth has a crush on her as well. Vanessa is disgusted by him and doesn't want him to try anything funny outside of the play. Their director Kim, who came with Jesse asks them to come to theater, because they have a lot of work to do.
On stage, Jesse teases Ross about having stage fright and how he shouldn't worry because he's only playing Macduff, insulting him as if to say his character isn't important enough. Vanessa tells him off, for being so stuck up and rude. Then suddenly the lights on stage flicker. Kim asks Jesse to help her bring in some things inside and for Ross and Vanessa to clean up the stage.
Vanessa encourages Ross to not felt put down about what Jesse said, because his role is very important too. Ross isn't too inspired and she tries help motivate him. Vanessa rehearses the scene where Lady Macbeth sees a spot of blood on her hand. She holds her hand out and says "And yet here's a spot! Out damned spot! Out I say!" Suddenly from nowhere a few drops of blood really do fall onto her hand and she freaks out. Vanessa asks Ross how he did it, he claims he didn't do it. Seeing that he laughed, shes think he's mocking her and walks away feeling insulted.
Ross begins to whistle as he cleans the stage, causing the light to flicker. Then a middle aged woman comes by and tells him it's bad luck to whistle on a stage. She introduces herself as the wardrobe mistress Hermione St. Claire. Ross introduces himself and says he's a lousy actor whose just playing Macduff. Hermione tells him that his role is very important. Ross carries some stuff to the costume room. There he explains what just happened and why Vanessa got mad and left. Hermione tells him that strange things have happened many times before in the theater, and people claim it's haunted. Ross doesn't believe her and thinks she is joking, but she assures him she means it. Hermione says it's haunted by a ghost who is usually harmless, but will go after people who disrespect the theater and it's traditions.
Vanessa comes in and Ross tells her what Hermione just told him. She says it's just a ghost story and to not let it scare him. Vanessa introduces herself saying she's playing Lady Macbeth. Hermione is pleased to her this, saying she once played it too. Hermione mentions that it'll be the first time that the theater will have a performance of the play in fifty years. Ross says what Macbeth? Hermione screams and tells him it's bad luck to mention the name of the play in the theater. Then tells him to spin around three times and leave the room and come back in.
Then as Ross leaves the room, he can hear Vanessa and Hermione laughing, feeling unconvinced about what he was told, he whistles. Then he spins around screaming Macbeth several times. Inside the costume room Vanessa expresses her concern and tells Hermione to not tell Ross ghost stories. Because if he gets too scared he might quit the play. Hearing this Hermione seems worried and says if he does they won't find a replacement in time.
Ross suddenly finds the witches cauldron full of bubbling green slime. Inside is a vision of an actor dressed as Macbeth. His face is pale with scars on it and his eyes are bruised. He addresses him as Macduff and tells him the final battle is coming soon. Then suddenly an arm emerges and grabs Ross' neck. Ross screams for help. When the ladies get there, he explains what happened. But the cauldron is empty with nothing but a studded leather glove in it. Hearing this, Vanessa thinks Ross is making up excuses to quit the play because he's scared and she leaves feeling disappointed. Ross catches up with her and explains he isn't sure what he saw, but the whole play is just creeping him out. Vanessa tells him he's really good and should have gotten the lead role instead of Jesse. Ross feeling encouraged smiles and explains the real reason he auditioned for the play was to spend more time with her. Vanessa feels pleased to her this and she kisses him on the cheek and shes leaves.
Just before Ross leaves a green translucent ghost of Macbeth approaches him. The ghost throws a dagger which lands into the wall right next time him. Ross is horrified as the ghost screams it's head off, asking Macduff if he's prepared for the final battle. Then the ghost and the hilt of the dagger vanish. The next day Ross meets with Vanessa and Kim, feeling scared and nervous. He tells them he needs to quit the play. His excuse is that he's fallen too far behind in his school work. Kim is not pleased, because the dress rehearsal is that night. Vanessa doesn't believe him and madly confronts him and gets him to confess he's just scared. Ross says that she has no idea, seeming as if she has given up and on him, she tells Kim that they will just find someone else.
Ross returns to the costume room to speak about the strange happenings to Hermione. However she isn't there, Gwen is and she says only she works in the costume room. Gwen asks him if he needs any help, and he says not unless you believe in ghosts. She tells him that he must have met the resident theater ghost Adrian Harcombe. She explains that fifty years ago, the theater was having performances of the play. Adrian was casted as the leading role of Macbeth. Adrian was a fine actor, and the play was going wonderfully. Then just before the final act, Adrian suddenly got terminally sick and died on the spot (although it's not mentioned what it was but possible it might have been polio or meningitis).
Gwen shows him the old advertisement poster. The poster reveals that Hermione St. Claire was cast as Lady Macbeth in that very play, also Gwen reveals hat she was Adrian's wife. Ross is shocked and asks her why Hermione didn't tell him. Gwen laughs and says because Hermione St. Claire has been dead for the past twenty years. Revealing that she's a ghost too!
Ross meets with Vanessa and he tries to truthfully explain why he needs to quit the play. She doesn't believe him and thinks he's making up excuses being too nervous and scared to go through with the play. She is very upset and disappointed in him and tells him to go away. The next evening, the cast members are all in costume preparing to do the dress rehearsal. Ross sits down next to Kim asking her who will replace Macduff. Kim says that she will do it, but Ross tells her since his role is important he's had a change of heart, and asks her if he can come back. Kim is pleased and says yes, also Vanessa is very pleased and smiles.
The dress rehearsal is going smoothingly, then just before the final act a chainmail costume takes human shape and Adrain emerges! Adrian locks Jesse in a wardrobe and heads to the stage to do the final act. The final act begins Macduff says "Turn hellhound turn!" no one appears they call for jesse and he doesn't show up. Then slowly Adrian walks onto the stage saying "Of all men else I have avoided thee. But get thee back. My soul is too much charged. With blood of thine already". Adrian comes off as being terrifying and menacing, and the rest of the cast run off the stage scared, Ross is almost frozen in fear.
Then at the side of the stage, Hermione begs him to do the final act with him. Because he's waited for so long and just wants to finish. The cast members are all sitting down and now seem eager to watch them. Ross decides to do it so as Macduff he says "I have no words, my voice is in my sword! Thou bloodier villain. Than terms can give thee out!" Macbeth tells him "I have nothing to say to you. My sword will talk for me". They engage in an impressive and violent sword fight. Macbeth almost wins until Macduff stabs him (no blood). Macbeth dies from his injury and says "Out, out, brief candle! Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player, That struts and frets his hour upon the stage, and then is heard no more" and collapses over and dies.
Watching from nearby Hermione is so impressed and happy for him she is almost crying tears of joy. The stagelight goes out and everyone claps their hands. Adrian bows to all the people, then Hermione runs right into his arms giving him a big hug. They spin around three times, and she transforms into her younger self, in her old costume. While Adrian appears to look healthy again, his eyes no longer bruised and his facial scars are gone. Vanessa is astonished by what just happened. Adrian & Hermione bow to their audience, and Adrian thanks Ross for his help. Then Adrian & Hermione passionately kiss and in a flashing aura they both vanish crossing over to the afterlife.
Later that night, afterwards Vanessa is very impressed with how well Ross did. She now undertands that all Adrian wanted to do was finish the play. She mentions how amazing it was and he says it'll be a real tough act to follow. Vanessa kisses him on the lips, and he is pleased saying that'll do. She asks him if he'll stay with the play, Ross now inspired and excited tells her he certainly will and they leave together happy.
As the story ends, Megan says that Adrian finally got to finish the performance and take care of his unfinished business. Megan then says the end and ends her story. Her friends are very impressed, Andy tells her it was really good, and Quinn says that it was a great story.
Tucker then tells them speaking of unfinished business,he asks them to pay him back for the popcorn and soda he bought them. Quinn runs off quickly saying "Sorry man I'll catch you next time..," Vange quickly tells him she doesn't get her allowance until tomorrow and runs off quickly. Megan quickly tells him she didn't eat any and she hates soda and runs off quickly. Andy is honest and tells him that he simply has no money and quickly takes off.
Tucker is annoyed that they left him to clean up the mess all by himself. So reluctanly he begins cleaning it up. Mad and annoyed he pouts saying that being in The Midnight Society was way more fun when he wasn't the responsible one. Then he begins picking up all the pop cans and paper bags.
- This was the second time that Jay Baruchel, who portrayed Ross Doyle, appeared in the series revival. Also the third time he appeared in the entire series. He first appeared in the original series episode, "The Tale of the Dead Man's Float" as Joe. Previously before this episode he made his second appearance in the episode "The Tale of the Zombie Dice", as Alex. Then he made his fourth and final appearance in the episode "The Tale of the Time Trap", as Jason Midas.
- This was the first time Sheena Larkin, who portrayed Hermione St. Clair appeared in the series revival. Also her fourth appearance in the series all together. She first appeared in the original series as Nanny in "The Tale of the Lonely Ghost". The second time She reappeared as Boss Hag in "The Tale of Watcher's Woods".Next she appeared as Sara Simpson in "The Tale of the Room for Rent". Then she made her final appearance in the three part Season 7 Premiere "The Tale of the Silver Sight" as Grandma Aggie.
- Babs Gadbois who portrayed Gwen, previously appeared in the orginal series episodes "The Tale of Watcher's Woods" as Headband Hag. Also "The Tale of the Mystical Mirror", as Old Ms. Valenti.
- Sheena Larkin & Babs Gadbois who portrayed Hermione St. Clair & Gwen, previously appeared together in the original series episode "The Tale of Watcher's Woods", as Boss Hag and Headband Hag.
- Marcel Jeannin who portrayed Adrian, had previously appeared in the original series. He first appeared in the episode "The Tale of the Dead Man's Float". at The Corpse.
- Heidi Burbela who portrayed Kim. previously appeared before in the original series. She first appeared in the episode "The Tale of the Ghastly Grinner", as Hooper Picalarro.
- Kathryn Long also appeared in the Goosebumps TV series as Carly Beth Caldwell in "The Haunted Mask", as well as "The Haunted Mask II".
- Jay Baruchel as Ross Doyle/Macduff