brad and judy seeming older than they are and acting out stilted, unsettling caricatures of what they think is the ‘perfect parents’ archetype is actually really fucking heartbreaking when you realize they’re trying to fill the hole left in both their lives and their son’s by what happened
even more heartbreaking is when the curse starts chipping away at their pretenses and you realize that, as much as they wanted to be, the people they’ve become just aren’t parent material; they’re deeply uncomfortable and inept at connecting/dealing with kids on more than a superficial level, as evidenced by Man in the Mirror, and as they fall further into their own selfishness they completely lose track of what was important to them in the first place
tl;dr brad and judy exhibit a pretty unique kind of brokenness for a kids’ cartoon that’s even sadder for how hard it is to tell exactly what the fuck is wrong with them
”my wave, my shark, my demon in the dark. the blue tied pulling me under."
wake up kids we’ve got the dreamers disease
Living in Coolsville, Ohio meant that life was never normal. The town on it own had it secrets - deadly secrets. Judy Reeves never thought she would get mixed up in all but that all changed her junior year of high school. Judy, the perfect daughter. A straight A student and popular girl at school. Not for her money, but for her kindness. you see Judy might have come from wealth but her parents were a bit more on the hippier side of things. Their daughter was intelligent, in the top percentage of her class and never used her power to traffic terror or intimidation. Instead, she used it to help others. Which is why Judy volunteer to tour others to help them with school. That’s where she met Brad Chiles. The boy needed help with math, at least she thought he did. In reality Brad was perhaps one of the smartest kids from the wrong side of the tracks. He only used tutoring as an excuse to get close to Judy. After all a girl of her stature would surely never fall for someone like him but she did. Judy fell hard for Brad. There was a connection there that she had never experience with anyone else before. He understood her better than she understood herself sometimes and that meant a lot considering she often felt invisible in her opulent lifestyle.
In no time Judy and Brad began dating, much to her father’s dismay. But she didn’t care. She was happy and that’s what mattered most. So, when the time prom rolled around it was a no brainier that the two went together. The only thing is the town was on high alert. The night that prom was supposed to be taking place was the 20th anniversary of the Coolsville murders. In 1974 a string of murders took place in the small town. At the center of these murders was Rodney Loomis, an outcast who was pushed too far one day and took his revenge out on the student body. The murders finally stopped little did Judy know she was somehow tied to the town’s dark past. No one thought anything of the anniversary but Judy’s mom was wry of the entire thing. She tried to reason with her daughter, begging her not to go to prom that night. Except Judy didn’t listen. She wanted to spend the night with her boyfriend. If only Judy had heeded her mother’s warning because that night someone came to a prom in a Rodney Loomis mask and next thing you know the gymnasium was covered in red. There was a total of five people dead at the end of the night. The horror that happened twenty years ago had come back to haunt them. Judy and Brad barely made it out alive. It wasn’t until later Judy found out that her mother grew up with Rodney. The two were best friends and Rodney was even in love with her mother. Of course her father had gotten in the way and which pushed Rodney to his crime. With that lingering over her head Judy knew she had to leave.
Brad had already had a love for the paranormal so together the two decided to decided to hop in Brad’s van and travel the U.S ghost hunting. In a way it gave Judy closure. Ghosts she could deal with. She always believed in them too, after all coming from Coolsville the first thing you’re taught is the haunted history of the town. But real people? They were the real monsters. That was the one thing she couldn’t face. From that day on she vowed never to return to Coolsville unless she absolutely had to now. Now Judy dedicated her life to helping others in this life and the next.