Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Fat Albert's Halloween Special

Premiered October 24, 1977
Fat Albert and his friends go shopping for Halloween costumes at the Root'N Rummage Emporium. Rudy and Devery are creeped out by the presence of Old Lady Bakewell, an elderly woman who lives in “that creepy old house by the cemetery”. Fat Albert wants to know why they’re afraid of her. Rudy says it's because Bakewell is weird and that “all old people are weird.” The store’s owner, Mr. Root throws them out for horsing around in his shop. Russell believes that all old people, including Mr. Root, are bad and that they hate kids. Later, when the gang is dressed up to go trick or treating in home-made Halloween costumes, Rudy & Dumb Donald express excitement about "scaring old dudes" that night.

Later, when the gang is dressed up to go trick or treating in home-made Halloween costumes, Rudy & Dumb Donald express excitement about "scaring old dudes" that night.

So the gang meets up with Devery at the cemetery. They plan an evening of scaring and pranking old people in between trick or treating visits. Fat Albert suggests they just stick with trick-or-treating, but he's overruled by the rest of the gang, especially Rudy and Devery.
Devery's sister Melba shows up reminds her big brother that he's grounded and needs to go home. He mocks her and continues his quest to frighten the elderly.
The gang then goes to a movie theater that is showing 'The Space Squids That Ate Pittsburgh'. Devery wants to scare an usher named "Searchlight" Johnson. After Rudy and Devery cause a disturbance, the whole group is thrown out of the theater. Fat Albert is angry about this because he wanted to see the rest of the movie.
Next,they try to scare Mudfoot Brown (a street smart old man who was a recurring character in the Fat Albert series). This backfires, as Rudy and Devery freak out, thinking Mudfoot is a ghost. Mudfoot then manages to eat most of the gang's Halloween treats while rambling about how much better the holiday was when HE was a kid.
The last stop is Old Lady Bakewell's house. Melba shows up and says Devery is in big trouble and must come home right now. Devery says he will, if she'll go trick or treating at Bakewell's house all by herself. To the shock of the gang, Melba walks right towards the Bakewell house, then Russell follows her!
Now it's up to Fat Albert and the gang to get them out of Bakewell's scary old house! Will they make it out of the house alive? Or will they learn a Valuable Lesson about respecting their elders?
J.A. Morris says:
If you grew up in the 70s (like I did), Fat Albert & The Cosby Kids was probably part of your Saturday morning. Every episode had plenty of laughs, bad plays on words ("you're like school on Sunday-No class!") and every episode taught a lesson. This special is no different. Fat Albert was always the moral/emotional center of the show, often discouraging his friends from doing something stupid. And for a few years, this special was as much a part of Halloween as It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.
Without spoiling the ending, the simple message in 'Fat Albert's Halloween Special' is "old people are human beings and should be treated with respect."
It should be noted that 'Fat Albert's Halloween Special' is the first and only appearance of Devery.
My rating:
3 jack o'lanterns

RigbyMel says:
I, too, have fond memories of the Fat Albert series growing up. As a more critical adult, I am not crazy about some of the cheap, recycled animation (one of Filmation's trademarks), but the voices (many done by Bill Cosby, himself - haha!) and story make this Halloween special worthwhile.
My rating:
3 jack o'lanterns

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