Season 2, Episode 3
Date of airing: October 5, 2014 (Disney Channel)
Nielsen ratings information: 2.576 million viewers, 0.37 rating with Adults 18-49, 0.37 rating with Adults 18-34, 0.34 with Adults 25-54
I mentioned it during the Halloween episode of the first season, and I’m gonna repeat it again: I love this episode. It’s probably one of the best Halloween episodes ever, and it gets that distinction without ever being creepy or scary or tense. But it managed to be freaking hilarious with its evil twin (or in this case, evil triplet) premise, and as it turned out, Dove Cameron can be a great actress when she is given a great role. Helga was a funny character, her chuckling laugh made me laugh, and the idea of Helga’s supernatural powers only being used for wedgies, as well as her demonic voice coming out to sound creepy every once in a while, gave this episode a very nice and laugh-out-loud funny touch. I liked Helga so much, I hope that the character will turn up in another episode, or become something of a short-lived running joke, to tell Maddie that she should always be careful what she wishes for. Besides that, the way Helga was turned into a villain and pretty much the evil queen of Stevens Point gave me chuckles as well. Everyone around her was crying when she was yelling, everybody was scared to be her prisoner, and the only one even thinking about making a break away from her was Maddie. All while Helga had the ability to give wedgies to people mocking her. It’s like THE SIMPSONS Treehouse of Horror episode with Bart’s evil twin, only less like a horror parody and more like a sheer comedy.
By the way, how did this episode even went past Disney Channel’s Standards & Practices? The wedgies were essentially Helga putting her hand up people’s butts, but as indirectly as possible, which could give some people the opportunity to make buttplay jokes about this episode, and how much Helga seems to be loving … ehm, anal. Besides that, I would have wished for Maddie to treat Helga like the villain she was, instead of just making for a break and hoping that the amulet would make things better again. Maddie could have used some of her talents to evade Helga and beat her, and maybe the story could have eventually been used to make peace between Helga and the other triplets, just to showcase that all Helga needed and wanted was appreciation and love from her sisters, but all she got in this universe was hate and disgust and fear from them.
In the meantime, Parker and Joey were interested in clones, and as soon as that word was dropped in their story, I knew that they would get their own twins in this episode, and the producers using this opportunity to take some of the lessons they have learned and create more scenes in which cast members also play their doubles. It’s a good thing that Parker looked quite fresh in his suit, and that Joey as the dumb kid licking his hand and shoe was pretty much his character all along. The twist that Joey and Parker’s twins were also evil was kind of nice. It makes you wonder whether there was something special about the amulet, or whether wishes always come in extremes with that thing. So, you wish for a clone? That clone is gonna be evil! You wish for a sports car? That sports car is gonna burn when you sit in it and drive over the speed limit! You wish for an A in your exam? That A is not gonna help you to up your yearly average though! You wish to get rid of your parents for the evening? Your evil clones will come to your rescue and cook off your parents in the backyard!
Best part of the episode: Dove Cameron’s face acting immediately before and after she ate the fish that was given to her. That was probably the moment I not only fell in love with Dove Cameron as an actress, but also the character Helga, who needed a spin-off at this point.
Worst part of the episode: Consider the Rooneys weaklings when it comes to defending themselves. Pete and Karen were pretty much helpless in the cooking pots. Never expect them to help their kids when they are in trouble at some point.
Weirdest part of the episode: Helga chew on the amulet, which was supposed to be in pieces in her stomach. But it was still working when Maddie made her accidental wish. Convenient storytelling is convenient.
Player of the episode: Dove Cameron played three characters in this episode. I hope she also get three times the paycheque, because she did deserve it at the end.