|C-List Ghosts of the Real Ghostbusters:
The Spirit of Aunt Lois
This episode introduces us to one of Ray Stanz' scatterbrained relatives, who believes - correctly - that her
estate is haunted. Unfortunately, she trusts a con-man "exorcist" over her son's busting business, and the
phony seance angers the real ghostly residents, the Domoboi. These are normally supposed to be helpful
household spirits, but when they continue to trash the place, they earn a ticket to containment.
|The Real Ghostbusters is copyright 1984 Columbia Pictures
The very first and friendliest-looking Domoboi we see is a hairy, purple goblin with bird's wings and wide
saucer-eyes, which uses its tongue to wreck the exorcist's hidden projector. I immediately loved this one when I
was little, drew pictures of it more than once, and pretended to have a whole fleet of them as minions.
It's easy to miss, but several of the spirits begin as goofy rodent-like imps before they take on some of the
more interesting forms we see throughout the rest of the episode, cleverly concocted from household objects:
My favorite of these, perhaps my favorite of the whole episode now that I've revisited it, is definitely the
scissor-faced sock monster, one of the most frightening for its eye-stabbing potential. The teakettle is not to
be trifled with either; it makes fire from its mouth and hot steam from its ass.
Those that remain in their "natural" forms include the purple goblin, a greedy pig-like spirit and a simply darling
pollywog ghost. Sure, he has fangs, but could you ever be afraid of this little guy? Look at his little glasses and
his ratty old scarf! His name should be Professor P. Wog.
Whoa, whoa now, wait a minute...is that a potato ghost? A grumpy potato ghost? A grumpy potato ghost with a
mustache? If it only wore some kind of tiny hat, my world would be complete. I vote for a fez.
Only one ghost in this episode might be genuinely unnerving to encounter in person, and this bodiless, flying
dog-woman head would seriously terrify me. It's the pale, off-human face that does it. It's what psychologists
call the "uncanny valley" phenomenon.
When I first saw this episode, I was very pleased by the ending, as my then-favorite Domoboi was the only one
to not find itself in a ghost trap. The "exorcist" can't even see that he's taking something home with him, and
Aunt Lois pretends she doesn't either. Cue the "everybody laughs" ending typical of 80's cartoons.