Normally, I’d do these one episode at a time, but I have Hulu Plus to watch them, and, well, Gravity Falls is so damn good that I couldn’t wait the three weeks (sort of) to watch all three and went for all three at once.
I am not sorry about this.
Besides, this seems to be the week to wrap things up for the weekly TV post. We saw season enders to Black Mirror and Ash vs Evil Dead earlier in the week.
Now, normally, I’d do a big plot recap, some general thoughts, and because I find Gravity Falls very amusing, I’d work in some of the better lines and scenarios into my write-up.
But a lot happens in these three episodes, and I generally go for more general stuff when I go for when I get to the end of any given show, and Gravity Falls writ large may not really be about Dipper and Mabel. Not really. As we’ve seen many times before, the heart of the plot around all the overall weirdness (and Bill Cypher makes things weird on purpose) is that the Pines twins need to reconcile whatever is driving them apart during any given episode. When the two work together, Dipper’s overall preparedness and Mabel’s adventurous spirit can prevail over any obstacle, be it a living mini-golf ball horde, forest gnomes, time travelers, or cults of people who want you to forget. And it is true. The series ends with a successful plan by our heroes when the Pines twins reconcile and work together.
Only, it isn’t Dipper and Mabel. It’s the other Pines twins, Stan and Ford.
See, Dipper and Mabel had another misunderstanding that caused Mabel to accidentally let Bill out of his dimension, and Bill comes down, remakes the opening credits, and starts to make Gravity Falls weird with his odd friends and nasty ideas. Mabel is MIA, Stan sees Gompers the goat grow to giant size, and Dipper manages to get away to Ford. Ford has a gun that could knock Bill back into his home dimension and save the day. But he misses when things get weird, and Bill turns Ford into a backscratcher. Again, Dipper gets away and finds Wendy at the mall. Since Bill is turning everyone in Gravity Falls to stone in order to make himself a giant throne, oh, and he easily destroyed the Time Baby, he’s got mastery over all time and space; he’s looking unstoppable. Dipper figures he beat Bill twice with Mabel, so if he gets her back, he can do it again.
That means getting past Gideon. And that means also driving through Bill’s weirdness bubbles that change Dipper and Wendy (driving through at high speeds) into different styles of animation and even at one point into their voice actors Jason Ritter and Linda Cardellini. They get through and even hook up with Soos, Handyman to the Apocalypse. Bill put Mabel into a special prison that would take a will of titanium to escape because it would mean giving up what you really want, and it’s turned into Mabel’s idea of paradise. She even made a cooler twin brother named DIppy Fresh.
Mabel gets her cuteness? She doesn’t want out. Wendy can prank the school and Soos can play catch with the father he never knew (here imagined as a luchadore). But Dipper? “Wendy” says they can be together if Mabel makes him a little older, and Dipper sees through that. Sure, he gets put on trial by a giant cat judge voiced by Jon Stewart with a southern accent, but he convinces Mabel to leave and the group escapes by riding a giant Waddles out. From there, they go back to the Shack and discover Stan is there with the survivors. Ford’s efforts to make the Shack Bill-proof worked, and there’s Stan with whoever was left over: Pacifica, Sheriff Blubs, Old Man McGucket, Grenda, Candy, some gnomes, Manotaurs, the boy band clones, golf balls, the wax head of Wax Larry King (Larry King), a unicorn, the Multi-Bear (still Alfred Molina), some other townsfolk, and Rumble (now Humble) McSkirmish. Will they hide there like Stan suggests? Actually, no. They rebuild the Shack into a mech equipped with callbacks to every episode of the show thus far, and then since Soos showed McGucket anime, they stomp off and…
Look, that was just cool as hell.
They rescue Ford and the townsfolk, and there’s another attempt to banish Bill following a prophecy where special folks join hands and banish Bill. Who are these people? Ford, Mabel, Pacifica, Dipper, Robbie, Gideon, Blubs, McGucket, Soos, and Stan. But Stan won’t because Ford never thanked him for the rescue, and then the brothers get into a fight over Stan’s grammar and that leads to…well, Bill comes back and turns everyone not named “Pines” into a banner and the Shack was trashed when Bill found a weakness in the anti-weird bubble.
Bill chases the younger twins, and that’s when Stan and Ford actually talk and apologize. Stan was too rough with Ford, and Ford knew Stan would have seen through Bill’s lies and prevented this whole mess in the first place. There’s only one solution left. Let Bill into Ford’s mind to find the mathematical formula to let Bill escape the town’s weirdness magnet and cause havoc all over the world. But if he enters Ford’s mind, he’ll be vulnerable to the forgetful ray provided you completely wipe Ford’s memory…or, as it turns out, Stan’s. Ford’s too valuable. They can switch clothes and trick Bill into entering Stan’s mind and then erase Stan’s entire life. He even get to punch Bill one good before they both fade out and the town returns to what passes for normal.
It would be sad, but Stan gets his memories back when Mabel shows him her scrap book.
So, that’s the end. The show wraps everything up. Dipper and Mabel turn 13 and go home to their parents, taking Waddles along. Stan and Ford decide to go sailing around the world looking for treasure and adventure like they wanted to as kids, and Soos and his girlfriend Melanie run the Shack. It’s sweet and sentimental, and I loved the hell out of this show.
10 out 10 lines from a bus driver voiced by Kyle MacLachlan in case you missed this was sort of a kid friendly version of Twin Peaks.
Of course, that means it’s time to find something else for Fridays. Hey, look, Vikings came back!