|Babes in the Wood|
|Season 1, Episode 8|
|Air Date||November 6th, 2014|
"The Ringing of the Bell"
"Into the Unknown"
Babes in the Wood is the eighth chapter of Over the Garden Wall.
Wirt has lost all hope of ever finding the way back home and so, after hearing the sound of The Beast's singing, he decides they should just go to sleep under a tree. After they fall asleep, Gregory has a dream about The Queen of the Clouds and The North Wind. While Greg was dreaming, the weather turned from fog to snow. At the end of the episode, after Gregory trades himself to the Beast in place of Wirt using his wish from the Queen of the Clouds, Wirt tries to chase him and ends up falling into a frozen lake. This is another appearance of a lake, this one being a direct correlation to the next episode where we find out exactly how Wirt and Greg ended up in The Unknown.
In the beginning of the chapter, Greg, Wirt and Greg's frog are seen floating across a lake using an outhouse. The group hear the beast's singing which depresses Wirt. The outhouse then hits land and the crew gets out of the outhouse. Wirt comes to the conclusion that they are never going to home and tells Greg that he acts too childish. He then proceeds to go to sleep under a tree followed by Greg and his frog.
Greg then has a dream where he travels to Cloud City. In Cloud City, Greg is welcomed by the residents and they invite Greg to lead their song in order to teach him how to be a leader. During the song however, Greg is launched at the gate that holds back the North Wind and releases him and his minions.
Greg is chased by the North Wind where they then have a fight inside a house. Greg traps the North Wind inside a bottle. The Queen of the Clouds thanks Greg for saving her city and grants Greg a wish. Greg wishes for Wirt and himself to go home but the Queen of the Clouds says that can't be done because Wirt was already claimed by the beast. Greg then wishes for the beast to take him instead.
Wirt is then woken up by Greg saying good-bye to him and telling him to take care of his frog. Greg walks off with the beast, and when Wirt realizes what has happened, he chases after him. Wirt slips on a frozen lake hidden by snow and gets up and continues to run. The ice under him then breaks and he falls into the lake.
Beatrice and the Fisher Fish save Wirt using a fishing net. Wirt proceeds to pass out.
- Greg's Frog
- Cloud City Reception Commitee
- Hippopotamus, Giraffe and Monkey
- Fourth Reception Committee
- Cloud City People
- The Queen of the Clouds
- The North Wind
- The Beast
- Much of Greg's dream has the look and feel of early 20th century cinema. In addition to the direct references to other movies listed below, the dream sequence utilizes other early film techniques.
- An Iris is a small circle usually used as a transition between scenes. In early silent films, an iris was used to draw attention to or focus in on characters or objects. The Welcome Committees and other citizens are introduced via an iris.
- The color palette is particularly evocative of primitive color films from the 1920s. The dream sequence is dominated by muted colors in red, turquoise, and shades of grey which recreates the look of Cinecolor and two-strip Technicolor.
- While key members of Cloud City are animated in dynamic motions, some of the citizens are shown to move in a short, repeating range of motions, while others don't move at all. This appears to be a parody of Limited Animation, a time and money-saving process by which only a portion of a figure is redrawn to be animated rather than redrawing the entire cartoon.
- The title, "Babes in the Wood," is an old children's tale about two children who get lost in the woods:
My dears, do you know
that a long time ago
Two poor little children whose names I don't know
Were stolen away
On a bright summer's day
And left in the woods
as I've heard people say?
And when it was night, so sad was their plight
The sun it went down and the moon gave no light.
They sobbed and they sighed and bitterly cried
Then the poor little things just lay down and died.
And when they were dead, the robins so red
Took strawberry leaves and over them spread.
And all the day long they sang them this song:
Poor babes in the wood, poor babes in the wood!
- The Reception Committee seems to be inspired by the Welcoming Committee of Munchkin Land in the Wizard of Oz.
- Many of the scenes in the Cloud City are directly inspired by Alice's Wonderland, the first of the Alice Comedies. There's also a mixture of Little Nemo in Slumberland and The Harveytoons Show.
- The villain that Gregory fights off is called the North Wind; in Greek mythology, Boreas was the North Wind, part of the Anemoi, and was very violent. The song that the people of Cloud City sing is called "Forward, Oneiroi!" The Oneroi were the personification of dreams, sons of Nyx (Night), and brothers of Hypnos (Sleep) and Thanatos (Death). While the title of the song refers to them as Oneiroi, however, the lyrics first call them "cherubs." The song also ends with an "amen," indicating that perhaps it is a hymn.
- It should also be noted that in the Odyssey Oneroi were described (via a play on words) as giving either false dreams represented by a gate of ivory, or true dreams represented by a gate of horns. When looking at the lovely gates of cloud city it is possible to infer that this is to note that this is a false dream or an illusion of some sort.