|The Tale of the Dream Girl|
|Season 3, Episode 10|
|Air date||March 26, 1994|
|Written by||David Preston|
|Directed by||David Winning|
The Tale of the Curious Camera
The Tale of the Quicksilver
The Tale of the Dream Girl is the Tenth episode of the Third season of Are You Afraid of the Dark?, as well as the Thirty-Sixth episode in total.
Midnight Society Cast
- Joanna Garcia asSam
- Raine Pare-Coull as Betty Ann
- Jodie Resther as Kiki
- Daniel DeSanto as Tucker
- Ross Hull as Gary
- Jason Alisharan as Frank
- Fab Filippo as Johnny Angelli
- Shanya Vaughan as Donna Maitland
- Andrea Nemeth as Erica Angelli
- Barbara Jones as Mrs. Angelli
- Michel Perron as The Bowling Alley Manager
- Felicia Shulman as The Waitress
That evening begins with the viewers seeing Tucker and Kiki arm wrestling. Kiki is almost winning, when Tucker straining claims he can beat her. On the sideline Gary and Frank are watching and thinks it's ridiculous. When Betty Ann and Sam come in, Kiki saying hi to them distracts Tucker and Kiki beats him. Tucker complains she distracted him and wants a rematch, Frank doesn't believe him and Kiki doesn't want to bother and tells him to forget it. In a mood Tucker tells her he can beat her any time and any place.
A little amused, Betty Ann asks what's going on. Frank explains that Tucker is mad because Kiki called him a little runt. Kiki apologizes a little meaninglessly. Tucker tells her that she is just scared that he can beat her anytime and any place. Kiki, tells him " Yeah that's right I must be scared". Gary says that Sam is up tonight and asks her if she is ready, and she says yes she is.
Sam says she has a story about something incredibly horrifying. The story is not about monsters or demons, or any of the usual scary stuff. The story is about something that can strike any person any time, and it happens when we people least expect it. Intrigued and curious Gary asks her what it is? Sam says it's true love, when hearing this Kiki laughs not taking it seriously. Sam is very serious about it, because who says love isn't scary? Sometimes it can really hurt, love is what people live for and in her story it's kind of what they died for. Sam throws in the campfire dust to intensify the fire and submits her story for the approval of The Midnight's Society calling her story "The Tale of the Dream Girl"
Sam tells the story, The story is about two teenage siblings a brother and a sister named Johnny Angelli and Erica Angelli. They were very close, and even worked in the same bowling alley together "The Bowlerama Lanes". Johnny was a repairman and Erica worked as waitress. One night on their way out after closing late, Johnny finds in his locker, a beautiful silver ring with a sapphire core. Puzzled about how it got there he asks his sister if she put it in there. Erica says she didn't and has no idea how it got there and it's a girls ring. Johnny being curious, puts the ring on his baby finger and gets alarmed when it gets stuck and won't come off.
Later that evening as Erica is finishing her homework, Johnny complains because the ring is still stuck. He claims he didn't just try soap he tried everything to slip the ring off except cutting off his finger, but it won't come off. Their mom Mrs. Angelli comes in and tells Erica it's time for bed because it's getting very late and it's a school night. When Johnny says good night, she seems to ignore him and not answer. Confused Johnny wants to know what's up with their mom? Erica says that their mom just has a lot on her mind right now.
Instead of going up to bed, Johnny decided to stay up a little bit longer while and watch more television. Then suddenly the reception and signal goes out on the T.V. and is blinking and flashing black and white static. Then Johnny falls asleep and a teenage girls voice calls out Johnny? Johnny where are you? There you are! Suddenly a gorgeous brunette teenage girl in a blue Letterman's jacket enters the living room. She asks Johnny several times to wake up. She comes in closer and closer to speak to him. When she does this a white line flashes around her face and the sound of a train riding along the train tracks can be heard. Just when she’s about to kiss him on the cheek, the sound of a girl screaming in the background can be slightly heard. Then Johnny wakes up in a frightened shock.
Confused about his dream, he tries to take the ring off again but it won't even budge. Later that afternoon at the bowling alley, The manager is in a very good mood and says he’s living a good life. He tells Erica that he's just gone through another month without having to hire another maintenance guy, and there hasn't been a problem for fourth months. The longer he holds off hiring someone, the better his books look and the better he looks, and leaves smiling in satisfaction.
Johnny overhearing him feeling insulted, ignored and invisible questions Erica about why the manager isn't mentioning or appreciating any work he has done. Erica a little alarmed asks him what he's doing there. Confused he asks her why he can't be out in open. She gives him an excuse saying the manager will be mad if he gets grease on anything. He says at least the manager will now he‘s around and keeps the place running and will perhaps notice and appreciate him.
For a second something catches Johnny's eye, then he explains to Erica that, lately he's been having really weird dreams about the most beautiful girl he's ever seen. Erica tries to assure him that it's okay, every guy dreams that now and again. Johnny mentions that the dreams just seem so real and he's never seen her before but he just can't stop thinking about her, and she looks a lot like another girl who is sitting across the room at another table.
Erica identifies the girl to be Cheryl Lightheart, Johnny decides to go over and talk to Cheryl feeling that his dreams could be a sign that being with Cheryl could be fate. Erica doesn't think going over to talk to her is such a good idea. Cheryl is with her two friends and one of her friends is rude and disrespectful. They just got bowling shoes and they're rudely complaining to the manager that his eyes were upside down and gave them size 6 shoes instead of size 9 shoes and they all laugh.
Johnny tries to speak to her, saying he likes her and Cheryl turns around and gives a huh? Look and turns around laughs and asks her friends if they can see anyone talking to her. Her friend says she doesn't see anyone and it must be her imagination, and they head off to bowl. The manager disgusted by their attitudes sarcastically comments about how it must great to be so perfect. Johnny tries to tell him something, but he just turns away and goes on about his work. Erica looks worried seeing Johnny feeling invisible to everyone and being so sad.
Later, in the locker room, Johnny can't find any of his stuff in his locker. Then suddenly he can hear that teenage girls voice calling to him. Johnny, Johnny, it's me it's Donna. Johnny confused and scared asks who? The voice says it's Donna, Johnny. He looks down the hallway and suddenly at the end of it she appears saying it's Donna and calls out his name again. Shocked, Johnny goes over to find Erica but he can't find her. Suddenly Donna appears in the bowling alley and calls him by name again. He goes over to see her, but when he gets there she’s gone and people are just bowling. Then as he’s walking on his way out, Johnny can hear the sound of train tracks again. Then suddenly the horrifying sound of a girl screaming is heard, and he's covering his ear in horror. Then finds out the sound was also caused from a person just bowling a strike. Johnny shakes it off and heads home, he tries to speak to his mom, but once again she seems to ignore him and drop a letter addressed to him, he speaks about it with Erica.
The letter is love poem from Donna Maitland, and she invites him to meet her that night at The Bowlerama snack bar. Although he has a weird feeling about it, he has to go he just has to know more about her. That night he goes to the snack bar, and surprisingly it's open the waitress seems to be wearing 1960's clothes and old instrumental music is played in the background. He asks what they're doing there so late it's supposed to be closed. The waitress tells him they're never closed because they're "The Night Shift". Suddenly he's served Hot Apple Pie A La Mode (apple pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top) and a cola which is surprisingly his favorite snack and somehow the waitress just knew.
A little time passes and finishes his snack and gets up to leave thinking she won't show up. Suddenly Donna shows up and apologizes for being late and promises she would never stand him up, and she can't because he is wearing her ring. He is about to ask her if she wants it back and she asks him to dance, and they begin to dance together for a while. He asks her who she is and how she knows him. She tells him he must know because he is wearing her ring. He tries to tell her he just found it but, she tells him to shh and it's almost time to go and she wants him to leave with her. Looking at the clock the waitress tells them they better hurry, suddenly the clocks chimes. Donna says it's too late right now and she'll wait for him and leaves. Confused he wants to know what she means and bumps into a table. Suddenly the snack bar is empty and everyone is gone.
Johnny runs home scared and confused, to an upset and tense looking Erica. He tells her she was there and they met. Erica holding out a newspaper picture tells him before he says anything if this is the girl he saw? He says yes it's her, Erica is upset to reveal that she is dead. Johnny is upset and shocked to hear her tell him that, Erica tells him she died in a car accident, the time of how long ago it happened isn't revealed. But it can be guessed it possibly happened from a couple months to a couple years ago. She was driving with her boyfriend and the car got stuck on the train tracks. They made it out of the car, but Donna forgot her ring in the car, the ring her boyfriend had recently given her. Therefore Donna ran back to the car to get it and didn't make it in time and the Train came back and smashed into the car and killed her.
Johnny is scared now because he knows she is a ghost, and she wanted him to leave with her taking him to an early grave because he chose to wear her ring and be her boyfriend? The next day he tries to lube his finger to slip off the ring but it still won't come off. Suddenly Donna appears before him again, she tells him not run away from her and she wants him to go with her. Johnny tells her to take the ring back because he doesn't want it. Donna a bit frustrated tells him that he should know by now that it's him that she wants, and he should understand that by now. Getting scared he starts stammering and asks her to leave him alone. She comes closer and tells him it's time to go now, he yells no. Suddenly Erica appears and Donna vanishes. Erica, seeing Johnny looking tense and freaked out asks him if he is okay. He asks her if she saw her and Erica says who?
Then at home Johnny is tense and is pacing back and forth. Erica asks him if he's sure that the ring is making all of it happen? Suddenly the phone rings and Erica answers and she tells him the call is for him and it's Donna. Johnny answers rudely the phones, telling her he's knows it all some kind of joke and he's not falling for it and asks her to just leave him alone. Then from the phone Donna is heard telling him she is sorry and she won't bother him anymore. Suddenly the ring slips off his finger at long last. When it does Erica asks him if he stills think, it's nothing but a joke. Johnny thinks maybe she just wants her ring back and decides to visit the cemetery and return it to her.
Later that night he visits the cemetery and carefully searches for her grave. Then suddenly he trips and falls down. Erica comes over shining a flashlight and asks him if he's all right. He says he’s and asks her if she found anything yet. Erica says no she hasn't, then suddenly Johnny finds a plot on the ground and tells her to look at it. He wipes off the leaves to reveal Donna's name is on it. Erica asks him, how he knew it would be right there? and she mentions how he just so happened to get lost, wondered away from her and tripped right over it. A little puzzled he asks her what she is talking about? She tells him in an "Oh come on!" tone, that he knew exactly where she was buried and asks him why do you think that is? He says that she doesn't know what she means, Erica tells him maybe you've been here before, did you ever think about that? He asks her why would he ever be there it's a cemetery? Then she tells him why don't you tell me!
Erica getting very upset now, tells him that he remembers exactly what happened as he’s staring at the plot train track sounds are heard again. When the car got stuck on the tracks they both got out at first. Then Donna remembered she forgot her ring inside the car and ran back to get it because it meant so much to her. Donna was too late the train was coming and she couldn't get out in time. Hearing her scream in his head, Johnny now remembers everything now and screams Donna! Erica then asks what happened next? Johnny very upsettingly says he turned back and ran in to try to push her out of the way but it was too late the train was already there and crashed into them.
Johnny now wipes off the rest of the leaves to reveal that his name is also on the gravestone below Donna's and there is a message at the bottom that says "together eternally". He snaps at Erica about why she never told him. She tells him because he just didn't remember. He came back from the accident like nothing had happened and she was the only person that could see him, and no one else could, nobody could see him because he's a ghost too and for some unknown reason he couldn't remember the accident or anything that had happened and he didn't even know he was dead. He asks her what they should do now, Erica tells him that now that he knows everything will be fine they can still move on and be a family.
Suddenly Donna has shown up, and she is thrilled to see Johnny has come back to her and tells him it's time. Erica with a heavy heart realizes that crossing over with Donna is what he wants to do and that it's time to say goodbye. Johnny and Erica hug goodbye for the last time and say that they love each other. With Donna's permission he gives her the ring to remember him by and kisses her on the cheek. Then he and Donna share a passionate kiss and reunite and slowly walk off together in the dense fog to the after life with Erica looking on knowing he'll at last be happy once again.
As the story ends, Sam says that Erica was always going to miss Johnny, but it made her feel better to know that he was happy at last with the girl of his dreams. Then she ends the story, Gary tells her it was a good one, Tucker says "cool, you're a ghost and you don't even know it" Kiki in a mean tone tells him " Yeah you're a runt, and you don't even know it" Tucker is mad and tells her he'll show her who is a runt and chases her. Gary quickly declares their meeting officially closed and puts out the fire. Then they all quickly run to catch up with Tucker and Kiki.
- Michel Perron who portrayed The Bowling Alley Manager, reappeared again in the show a couple years later. His next appearance was as Carl Mueller in the episode "The Tale of Vampire Town".
- Many online sources have speculated that this episode was the direct inspiration for the film The Sixth Sense (1999).
- When asked if the show was an influence, director M. Night Shyamalan responded, "That’s really weird. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that show. I don’t want to ignore something that might have been an influence, but nothing rings a bell when you say that."
- As stated by her official Collector Photo Card, this story is Sam's favorite.
- Most of the cemetery tombstones were props used in previous episodes "The Tale of the Dream Machine" and especially "The Tale of Old Man Corcoran".
- The circumstances of the accident recounted in the newspaper were inspired by the song "Teen Angel".
- The pinball machine in the background of the bowling alley/diner scenes is a Twilight Zone table.