Over the Garden Wall follows a pair of half brothers, Wirt and Greg, as they navigate through the woods, titled “The Unknown”, and attempt to find their way home in time for a Halloween party Wirt is very eager to attend.
Along the way we meet Beatrice the talking blue bird and countless other friends or foes nestled inside The Unknown in one way or another. Together the boys, a blue bird, and Greg’s frog wind through the maze of the woods and make some pretty difficult decisions to save their skins throughout the process.
Elijah Wood perfectly captures the voice of the somewhat short tempered, anxious teen, Wirt. Collin Dean portrays his imaginative and energetic younger brother, Greg. Melanie Lynskey covers the headstrong yet comforting blue bird, Beatrice.
Christopher Lloyd voices the gruff and mysterious Woodsman. And the talent doesn’t stop there! Coming in for one to two episodes each the voices of Tim Curry, Emily Brundgie, Shannyn Sossamon, Janet Klein, can be heard throughout the show along with so many others!
Accompanying the warm, calm, almost nostalgic feeling animation style is some really dark plot points which might seem jarring at first especially for a kids show originally airing on Cartoon Network but ultimately pairs really well together.
Almost as if softening the blow or in some ways twisting the knife, watching two children coping with themes of torture, imprisonment, cults, and near death experiences. It almost feels as though the viewer is seeing the world through their eyes, sweetness attempting to mask the pain they’re forced to push past if they wish to make it home in one piece.
This is yet another cartoon I would highly recommend to fans of the strange and unusual, especially if one enjoys watching these terrifying scenes play out with a lovely art style of happy Halloween nostalgia.
Over the Garden Wall carries on themes of family sticking together no matter what, which is a message we should all be reminded of every now and then. If you’d like to catch a glimpse of this miniseries you can catch it on Hulu or HBO Max!