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Why ‘Over the Garden Wall’ Gets Me in the Mood for Halloween

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at FSU chapter.

With the smell of pumpkins and cinnamon in the air and Halloween creepily approaching, the autumn season is starting to settle in. I can hear “Calling All the Monsters” by China Ann McClain in the distance and feel the chill of the crisp fall air, but nothing gets me more excited for the spooky season than Over the Garden Wall. Having only 10 episodes, this cartoon follows two brothers, Wirt and Greg, as they embark on a journey through a strange forest called the Unknown. Meeting curious personas along the way, the brothers wander deeper into the forest with the hope of finding a way back home. While this may sound eerie at first, the comedic timing and calming fall aesthetic of the show make it the perfect watch for the Halloween season. 

What I find to be genuinely fun about the show is the setting itself. From a society of talking pumpkins to a ferry boat inhabited and run by frogs, Over the Garden Wall establishes a world that is immersive and bizarre. Its calming aesthetic allows the forest to appear peaceful despite the antics that take place inside. The cool, neutral tones of the Unknown, as well as the subdued reds and oranges of fall, provide a peaceful feeling that makes you want to curl up into a blanket with a warm cup of hot cocoa.


Over the Garden Wall 🍂

♬ original sound – ☾

I remember my first watch was on a rainy day. I had the blinds slightly closed. With a blanket wrapped around me and a warm cup of coffee on my nightstand, I watched the show with an overwhelming sense of peace and relaxation. While I was engulfed in the story, I was also pleased with how tranquil the Unknown was despite the bewildering characters that lived inside it. As someone who doesn’t do well with horror because of how easy I am to scare with a simple “Boo,” the gentle use of horror in this show lends itself well to the story and the aesthetic it presents.  

Accompanying the pleasant autumn environment are the interesting and quirky characters that we meet throughout the show. Wirt and Greg’s dynamic is adorable and hilarious. Fashioning a cone and teapot respectively, the contrasting personalities of each brother help balance the story and make their journey worth rooting for. Greg’s endless curiosity about his environment may get the boys into unwanted chaos, but every time I watch, I always find myself relating to him. If I were that young, I too would have a ball in the Unknown.

Along with Greg, another personal favorite character of mine is Beatrice, the sassy-talking bluebird who accompanies the brothers on their journey through the forest. I specifically love her dynamic with Wirt and how she is constantly teasing him with her witty remarks. While I do feel bad for Wirt getting the short end of the stick, Beatrice chews him up every time, and I can’t help but applaud her cheeky remarks.  

With the characters being exceptionally dynamic and well-rounded, their different personalities aid in telling a genuine story about youth and the importance of enjoying it. Throughout the show, Wirt worries about getting home while Greg mindlessly explores the Unknown. Despite their contrasting agendas, both boys inherently teach others about different facets and experiences of youth. As someone who has two older siblings, watching their dynamic change and flourish reminds me of what it was like to grow up curious and look up to my older siblings for advice and guidance.  

Having a compelling story, a wonderful set of characters, and a soothing autumn aesthetic, Over the Garden Wall has been at the top of my fall watch list from the moment I discovered it. If you ever need a light piece of horror to indulge in this Halloween season, I highly recommend this cartoon, as it’s the perfect show to kickstart your spooky October.    

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Sophia Ferraro – Florida State University HerCampus Chapter