The Real Ghostbusters episode 5 review

The Real Ghostbusters

Episode 005

Production number 75007 – 1986 ABC Season 1

“Troll Bridge”

Written by Bruce Reid Schaefer

Plot Synopsis:

A troll with a taste for the bright lights of the big city has run away from home, but his clan want him back. Bad. The troublesome trolls take over the Queensborough bridge, using cars to build themselves a fortress. The Ghostbusters arrive on the scene and are given 12 hours by the head troll to find and return their missing member, otherwise he’ll unleash a firestorm of fireflies on the city. The guys scour the city and eventually catch up with the party hungry troll, but how can they send him back to his dank life under the world’s bridges now that he’s tasted the big apple?

The Review:

I think this is one of those ubiquitous episodes of The Real Ghostbusters that everyone remembers watching. It just sticks in your brain, and for good reason because this is a really solid episode. This is the first episode written by Bruce Reid Schaefer and he really has a handle on all of the characters. Each Ghostbuster feels distinct. The humour is spot on as well. I’m not sure which other episodes he wrote, but I’ll be keeping an eye out for his name as my reviews continue.

This is arguably the first episode to deal with the Ghostbusters handling a corporeal entity. Up until now it’s all been ghosts and demons, but this is the first time the show has tackled living creatures. It’s interesting because it’s something the audience just takes for granted. The supernatural is the Ghostbusters territory, but not all supernatural entities truly fall with the Ghostbusters “jurisdiction” so to speak. If the Ghostbvusters handle trolls, do they also handle goblins? Vampires? Werewolves? Imps? Gnomes? Gremlins? Faeries? Where does it end? I’ll be interested to see what else the Ghostbusters will be called upon to deal with in this series.

The story here is very straightforward and yet another “run away” story, but unlike “Slimer, Come Home” this one doesn’t feel phoned in. Simple doesn’t have to mean boring. There’s a lot of fun happening in this episode. The witty banter between the guys really flows and Venkman is in fine form which is great to see. I’d mark this as the first episode where Peter truly comes into his own and begins to reach the same level Bill Murray achieved in the feature film.

This episode also includes some clever homages to other films. When the boys catch up with the runaway troll in the nightclub, his giant leap through the air is very reminiscent of Gozer jumping over the ghostbusters at the end of the first film. Also, There’s a definite Road Warrior connection in the design of the lead troll who is wearing what appears to be some manner of neck brace, just as the Humongous did in the film, not to mention the trolls car fetish.

The designs of the trolls and the fireflies were mostly very clever. It must have been great fun designing these creatures, and while a few lesser designs snuck in there for some of the miscellaneous background trolls that is easily forgiven considering the sheer number of trolls that appear in the episode. The Fireflies also are very cool looking and menacing.

All in all this is a very solid episode that really shows off just how good the series was. Considering that this is an ABC episode that’s really saying something.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 on the PKE meter

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~ by Pagz on November 12, 2010.

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