The Watcher on Netflix is an entertaining thriller / horror miniseries created by Ryan Murphy and Ian Brennan. I'm on episode five and have greatly enjoyed it so far, but before I finish it, I really need to go back to episode three and talk about the Halloween party. There are extremely mild spoilers ahead, but I promise I don't give anything away about the actual plot. We just need to talk about this party.
During this episode we learn about John Graff, one of the previous owners of the home. The details of every other part of his life and story are inconsequential for the purposes of this article. All that matters is that he comes home one evening and his teenage daughter is throwing a Halloween party. It is a scene that lasts less than 45-seconds, but man does it do a lot of work.
As Graff walks up his driveway that evening, the usual ominous music of the show fades and makes way for the dulcet tones of Monster Mash, one of the best holiday songs ever.
As the party unfolds in front of our eyes we see there are exactly 10 people there. The costumes are painfully classic despite the fact that this scene takes place in the mid-1990's (and the decor does not seem that contemporary).
There's Bride of Frankenstein and Dracula. There appears to be a sexy devil and a guy in one of those classic jailbird black and white striped costumes. There are also two pirates and two other costumes I cannot place. Considering the era, they could be The Mask and Wednesday Addams, but based on how standard the other costumes are they might just be "guy in suit" and "girl in dark clothes" (It's too early for a Babadook costume). This is why the scene should have lasted at least as long as "Monster Mash."
Anyway, we quickly pan to a couple dancing. One is John Graff's daughter, Pat, dressed as a fairy. She is dancing with Frankenstein, or to be more accurate, Frankenstein's Monster. John Graff walks in on this scene of nearly a dozen teens with party cups enjoying "Monster Mash" and rightly deduced that this was very inappropriate behavior. He walked right over to Frankenstein and ripped his mask off to reveal an adult man with a mustache. It's Pat's teacher whose explanation for slow dancing to "Monster Mash" with one of his students is simply, "I was invited."
Graff tells him to leave and immediately walks over to the record player to turn off "Monster Mash". Bummer. Party's over. Though the fact that they were playing "Monster Mash" on a record player at a party in 1995 makes you wonder what kind of party this really was. Especially considering there was a teacher involved. John then tells his daughter she's dressed like a whore and proceeds to shout, "Someone is watching!" (Titular line anyone!?)
And that's the entire scene. Just so much packed into a few seconds and none of it makes any sense. Inviting your teacher over to slow dance to a "Monster Mash" record is a bad idea for any teen girl, whether you're dating him or not. Especially if your father is on his way home. It's just a bad idea. And the teacher accepting the invite is just an insane heat-check moment. Did he really think the Frankenstein mask would protect his identity?
And how starved are these other kids for whatever is in those party cups that they're willing to hang out and listen to "Monster Mash" on a record player with the high school teacher who is sleeping with one of his students? What if John Graff hadn't walked in at that moment and turned off the record player? Was this the single verison or the full Original Monster Mash album by Bobby (Boris) Pickett and The Crypt-Kickers? If it was the album, the party was literally just getting started and "Rabian the Fiendage Idol" was going to play next. You simply cannot bump and / or grind to "Rabian the Fiendage Idol." I don't care what's in those cups.
So in a way, John Graff actually saved his daughter from being the girl who threw a party where everyone listened to another 35 minutes of "horror-themed parodies of contemporary hits and dance trends" from 1962. Also, he was trying to protect his daughter from a future Dateline predator. Without revealing anything else that happens in the series, he certainly sounds like a good dad.