Disney Channel Masterpiece Theater: ‘Don’t Look Under The Bed’ (1999)

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The Young Folks continue down the path of nostalgia as we review Disney channel’s original movies. This week, following the Halloween them we take a look at Don’t Look Under the Bed which premiered in 1999.

This was the first Disney Channel movie to genuinely freak me out! I mean, I had my covers pulled up to neck and was definitely scared that a boogeyman would come any second. Yet, it was too good to look away! This was actually the first DCOM to be rated TV-PG because of its scary scenes. So I wasn’t being a total chicken, you guys.

Don’t Look Under the Bed was about Frances Bacon McCausland (Erin Chambers) who is being framed by someone that is going all around town causing havoc; placing dogs on roofs, painting big B’s on lockers, throwing eggs at cars. By the way Frances whole name is by far one of the worst names of TV history. Moving on. Frances is a responsible and level headed girl and it’s insane she would do any of these acts she’s being blamed for. She’s even starting high school a year early and believes everything can be answered logically. She began to act this way after she felt forced to grow up and be responsible when her little brother almost died from Leukemia a few years ago.

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That is until she meets Larry (Eric “Ty” Hodges II), an imaginary friend who can only be seen by Frances, children and those who have an imaginative mind. Frances proves this as she makes a fool of herself trying to get others to see him. Larry tells Frances that the Boogeyman is framing her and they devise a plan to try to catch it.

It turns out that Larry is actually Frances little brother’s imaginary friend who she had convinced to stop believing in. When you stop believing in your imaginary friends is when they transform into a Boogeyman who harbor resentment and grudges towards their former friend. Frances can begin to see some symptoms in Larry which begins to scare her.

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Darwin (Jake Sakon), Frances’ brother, gets kidnapped by the Boogeyman into his dimension which is under Frances’ bed and Larry and Frances must go to rescue him. In the end Frances is able to prove to her imaginary friend Zoey (Rachel Kimsey), who is now the Boogeyman, that she genuinely cares for her still and this changes her back to her original form. All ends well as Larry and Zoey leave together to save other forgotten imaginary friends in a nearby town. Frances realizes that it’s important to have an imagination and not rush ahead, trying to act like an adult before time.

Don’t Look Under The Bed was one of the best DCOM movies because it provided great actual scary scenes without getting us in trouble with our parents. The make-up on the Boogeyman and even the background music they used throughout the movie definitely gave those eerie vibes to the viewer. The plot was also incredibly relatable! So many of us did have imaginary friends while growing up and the story plot was a great premise for kids who are going through the transition of growing up. Even watching it today can remind us of never losing our child- like ways of seeing the world. I also thought it was an interesting point that the Boogeyman was actually a girl and she made a point to not stereotype.

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I actually stumbled upon my nine year old niece watching it the other day. She told me it was actually scary which says a lot since kids now a days are used to seeing much more elaborate scary scenes. Even though it is a scary movie per say it’s an endearing story and I would definitely recommend it for everyones Halloween list right along the best of the best with Hocus Pocus.

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Born and raised in Miami. Graduated from FIU in journalism. Lover of all things music with a wide taste ranging from Drake to the Bee Gees. Ivanna must admit that she is a TV show junkie thanks to her DVR. She also loves staying up to date with all her friends through social media. Traveling is one of her favorite things to do. One of her goals is to travel cross-country through Chile before she’s 30. Keep up with her through Twitter: @ivannasimply