Are You Afraid of the Dark? Season 3 Episode 5: The Tale of the Dollmaker

“Gee septic tank sounds like fun, but uh I think I’ll pass”- Melissa

Tonight we get our first Betty Ann story of season 3. I think this is one of her creepiest stories from the entire series. I never had dolls growing up and I thin it is due to this episode as dolls freak me out. I had stuffed animals like my beloved Webbigail Vanderquack. Let’s start our story!

The night begins with Betty Ann walking into the the clearing and greeting her friends (but she sounds kind of sad) and taking her seat at the storytellers chair. They say hi to her as well. Then Tucker comes rushing in all excited that Betty Ann is up to tell a story and almost falls into the fire, but Sam catches him. They all look kind of confused and Betty Ann seems lost.

Betty Ann’s inner thought: Damn I have to bring it tonight

The Gary says ” I told him Betty Ann tells really weird stories and he’s been looking forward to it ever since.” Sam says “Ooh pressures on this better be good.” to Betty Ann. (wow way to build up the pressure, what would happened if she slipped and told a lame story? It sounds like they would stone her). Betty Ann says “I’ll see what I can do.” (she says this with the confidence of a person who did not study for a test). Betty Ann reaches inside her backpack and pulls out a doll (it looks like a porcelain kind, but since she grabbed it from the neck, I am going to assume it is not).

Betty Ann Doll Makrer
Betty Ann: They handed me Frank’s leftover sleeves and said here make a jacket.

Tucker isn’t impressed he says “A doll? Your telling a doll stories. weak. siesta time man. wake me up if it gets good.” Also that look Betty Ann is giving him, is a glare only an angry parent gives an insolent child. This embarrasses The Gary and he says “Come on Tuck.” Betty Ann says “It’s O.K. let him sleep.” Then she starts into her story, she says ” Most people think dolls are just toys, but they’re really like perfect little people. Sometimes there so life-like that it is almost as if the doll maker, took a person and shrunk them down to doll size, but that is not how dolls are really made or is it? (well she has peaked Tucker’s interest now and he appears to be awake).  Betty Ann sets her doll down and then submits her story for the approval of the Midnight Society and calls it: The Tale of the Dollmaker.

We are introduced to Melissa, a city girl who sometimes spends the weekend in the country with her aunt and uncle. Betty Ann tells us “The first few visits, it was pretty much a total drag. But then the Hendersons moved in next door. Even though they only saw each other a few times each year, Melissa and Susan Henderson quickly became best friends.”

Meet Melissa

Melissa arrives at her aunt Sally and uncle Pete’s house and is eager to see Susan, I guess to catch up on all the hot country gossip and talk about cute boys and what not. They failed to tell Melissa that the Hendersons moved back to the city. Melissa complains and says they loved the place. Aunt Sally is quick to change the subject.

Aunt Sally and Uncle Pete, they will feed you

Later that night Melissa makes a collect call home and complains to her mom how uncle Pete and aunt Sally do not have cable, but they are going to play BINGO. The next morning uncle Pete inquires Melissa’s help in fixing the septic tank, but she declines the offer. She doesn’t feel comfortable working on the septic tank since she failed out of plumbing 101.

Melissa thinks she sees someone up in Henderson’s attic and goes to investigate. She finds a hidden staircase inside a closet and decides to go up. Once she is up there she finds this:


Which is a replica of the Henderson’s house, complete with matching furniture. She looks into the house and a door quickly closes, she thinks it is a  mouse (a talented mouse). Melissa than sees a door to nowhere in the attic, and is about to open it when she is stopped by aunt Sally, who yells at her that she probably just saw her. Melissa says she thought Susan came back.

Aunt Sally explains that she wants Melissa to promise not to go back to the house. Aunt Sally tells Melissa “last winter…. Susan disappeared. No one knows what happened to her. One minute she was there, the next… she was gone the whole town came out. We searched everywhere. Her parents were heartbroken. They wanted to stay in case she came back, but… in the end they couldn’t stand to live in that house any longer.”

Later that night Aunt Sally and Uncle Pete have a fight about telling Melissa what happened to Susan. Uncle Pete says my favorite line “It was the house that got her.” Then Aunt Sally goes to check on Melissa to make sure she isn’t listening.

In the middle of the night a girl can be heard calling Melissa softly. The girl is saying “Melissa help me.” A light comes on in the Henderson attic and Melissa goes to find out what is up. Once up in the attic, Melissa opens the mysterious door, where she finds Susan!

Melissa? Melissa?

only to be stopped by Uncle Pete, who shows her that the door leads to nowhere and effectively safes her from jumping out of the attic door.

Melissa is convinced she saw Susan and Aunt Sally and Uncle Pete do not believe her. Uncle Pete is boarding up the door and Melissa is afraid that Susan will never get out. Later that day while aunt Sally is hanging laundry, Melissa breaks into the Henderson’s house.

She goes up to the attic and through the door, where she finds Susan sitting in the dinning room. Melissa is now doll sized. She tells Susan that she is going to help her, but when she goes back to the door, it is gone. Susan tells Melissa, it’s the attic and Melissa doesn’t understand her at first, but soon realizes that they must escape via the attic of the door house.

Melissa runs back to Susan and asks her to help move the bureau, but she can’t as Susan’s hand has fallen off and she is turning into a porcelain doll. Melissa realizes that she too is turning into a doll and acts fast. Melissa uses all her strength and pushes over the bureau. She then grabs Susan and they go up to the attic.

Once in the attic, they jump out of the window and are saved. Meanwhile, aunt Sally and uncle Pete are worried that Melissa has disappeared just like Susan and are thinking of what to tell her mother. I guess they are coming up with a cover story. They are relieved to see both girls.

Betty Ann ends her story by saying ” that very night Melissa’s uncle burned the dollhouse in a big bonfire in the backyard. As it wet up in flames, Melissa wondered where the door in the Henderson’s’ attic would lead now that there was no dollhouse left. The end.” Then Tucker who was awake the whole time says “Yeah…where would it lead to? Betty Ann says ” Oh? You awake?” Tucker says “Yeah yeah not bad for a doll story.”  The Gary the declares the meeting over and puts out the fire. Everyone gets up to leave, but Kiki finds a doll sitting on the storytellers chair and calls out to Betty Ann.

Kiki’s thought: Damn I wonder if Betty Ann has a Kiki doll
Tucker doll
Own your own Tucker Doll call Betty Ann for details!
Betty Ann inner thoughts: Little do they know, I have them all in doll form at home.
Betty Ann: Let me have mini Tucker back, he needs to join the mini Midnight Society.


See Kiki is a good friend, unlike the other who let her typewriter get ruined last season when they left it at the clearing. Kiki looks at it and says “This thing looks just like…you!”, she is directing her comment to Tucker. Tucker grabs the doll and says “Where’d she get that?” Betty Ann comes back and grabs the doll and says in an ominous way “That’s a whole other story.” The Gary smiles and Tucker is left feeling slightly creep out.

Moira’s Thoughts:

I really liked this story. It was creepy and made me look at my stuffed animals in a different way. I wonder if it was the inspiration for Five nights at Freddy.

  1. The way Tucker and Betty Ann interacted in this episode, was very much like a younger and older sibling. I bet she sees Tucker as a younger brother.
  2. I liked that Betty Ann had a Tucker doll, but it begs the question, where did it some from? If it was her doll from earlier why didn’t anyone notice Betty Ann changing the dolls clothes into Tucker’s outfit.
  3. This was an odd episode in a sense that we never actually see the villain or get a backstory as to who sold the dollhouse. I think it would have been a great story if it was told by two people like Cutters treasure. I think it would a Betty Ann and Kiki collaboration.

Lets give Betty Ann a round of cheers for her story: The Tale of the Dollmaker. Guess what, we are treated to another Betty Ann story next time as well. It is hands down maybe my favorite Betty Ann story, up next is her story: The Tale of the Bookish Babysitter.

This isn’t my Webby doll, but its what mine looked like, except since mine was my best friend it was dirtier.

I would like to interview *cough*Ross Hull or Raine Pare-Coull or Jodie Resther, *cough* I feel that if enough people tweet at them or Facebook them, and let them know about this blog, it can happen! Let’s make my dream come true!

Until next time…Submitted for the approval of the Midnight Society, I call this story: The tale of Moira’s Afraid of the Dark? (But not really) blog 5 of Season 3

Photo credit: Dollhouse   Aunt Sally Uncle Pete  Susan  Melissa  Betty Ann  Tucker doll  title card  Webby


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