The Final Four Countdown! Number 4: Gravity Falls: “Not What He Seems”/”A Tale of Two Stans”

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Ladies and gentlemen, we have now reached our Final Four Countdown of our Top 20 Countdown of 2015 and coming in with Number 4 in our list, a day that will go down in infamy as it revolves around everyone’s favorite grunkle, a secret revealed, and a fan theory becoming canon. Coming in with Number 4 in the Top 20 Countdown, it’s Gravity Falls, “Not What He Seems” and “A Tale of Two Stans”.


 

If there’s two words to describe these two episodes of Gravity Falls…holy shit. These two episodes are pretty insane. But of these two episodes, “Not What He Seems” pretty much took the cake.

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Prior to the last episode, “Northwest Mansion Noir”, that the countdown is on for the “apocalypse”, the same countdown that Stan put up for the opening of the portal. Not to mention, the government agents now noticing strong activity around the general area of the town, which leads to Stan.

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The scene at the beginning of the episode with Dipper and Mabel having some Summer fun with Stan seems to be the calm before the storm because they were having so much fun till the government came in and arrest Stan. Of course, before that happened, he wants to tell Dipper and Mabel his little secret, but failed to do so.

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Of course, Stan got arrested for harboring barrels of nuclear waste and the kids tried to get Stan off the hook, saying that he haven’t done anything bad enough to gain the Government’s attention. Which the Government replied before taking Dipper and Mabel away from Stan that they don’t know the “real” Stan.

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Of course, Dipper and Mabel got out by getting the car damaged. And how? Well…Mabel thought up of an idea when seeing Manly Dan passing by and found the perfect opportunity to escape. Which it worked, luckily, no one was injured. And Dipper and Mabel head off to the Shack to clear Stan’s name.

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While that is going on, Stan is in government custody and tells Soos on the phone to guard the vending machine. Which to Soos, guessing this must be the biggest moment in his life. And he maybe found his opportunity to escape custody, the anomalies. Which was first shown at the night before the big event of the opening of the portal.

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Dipper and Mabel finally got into the Mystery Shack without getting caught by the Government and finally got to see the tapes to clear Stan’s name but found out that the agents are right when seeing Stan putting barrels of nuclear waste into the shack. This got Dipper worried and Mabel in denial about the tape, thought they’re being pranked until they stumble upon a box full of fake IDs and a newspaper that has the title, “Stan Pines Dead”. Not to mention, a code on a piece of paper, found out that it’s the vending machine and headed off to where the vending machine is at.

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And while that is happening, the anomaly is taken place again, this time, Stan escapes from custody and heads towards the Shack, but not before fooling the government on his location.

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While that is happening, Dipper and Mabel got to the Vending Machine, where Soos was guarded and while Mabel has to take on Soos, Dipper successfully punched in the code and finally got to open the machine, where they noticed an underground room. Going down to the stairs, going down to the elevator and finally arriving at Stan’s underground lab. Thought the truth bomb is finally over? Think again.

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The three found the other two journals on the table (even though Journal 2 was used to belong to Gideon). Not to mention, seeing the portal in front of them. And when he open his own book, along with the other two, revealing the page that is a gateway to open the portal, they found out that opening the portal can cause major problems, so much that it might cause global destruction. And that’s where they decided to shut it down before it’s too late, but got stopped by Stan, who just arrived at the scene. You can see Stan’s face that he worked really hard to open it up, but if see Dipper, Mabel, and Soos’ faces, you can see that they felt betrayed. Hell, I could post meme reactions to this. Here’s Stan’s reaction…

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…and here’s Dipper, Mabel, and Soos’ reaction…

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…the three refused to listen to Stan and about to shut it down but due to an anomaly, everyone but Mabel got pushed to the wall. Meaning that Mabel has to decide whether to shut the portal down or leave the lever alone and regain Stan’s trust.

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This scene is really has way too much tension and suspense when Mabel has to make a choice. And Stan has to talk her out, asking that if he’s really the bad guy here. And that…that leads to Mabel letting go of the lever, she choose her answer, regaining Stan’s trust, but mostly doomed the whole world. That’s where an explosion happen when the countdown stops at zero and destroys everything. And by the time the explosion is done and the portal finally opens, we see a random individual coming out of the portal and picking up Journal 1. And who is that person who just came out of the portal?

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Ladies and Gentlemen, we got introduced to the Author of the Journals, aka Stan’s long lost brother. When I first saw this on the day it premiered…I was in shock. I would never imagine the whole “Stan Twin” theory becoming canon. I mean…yo, that shit cray, man. That shit cray. Here’s one of my Tumblr post after the episode premiered…

“I know this is the third month of 2015, but this episode of Gravity Falls hands down the craziest episode from any series I just watched. Period. Nothing has shocked me, disturbed me, violated me and…I need a break. I really need a break to try to forget what I just saw.”

…I would never imagine this episode have taken to another direction. Period. I’m not the only one who’s in shock, mainly, the entire Gravity Falls in general, as a whole, in shock when that revelation popped on their screens. But that’s enough for “Not What He Seems”, there’s a lot of questions and speculations to be answered during the hiatus, and it looks like those questions will be answered in “A Tale of Two Stans”.

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Well happy reunion to you too. When Stan welcomes his brother back to their universe, his brother knocked the shit out of him, thought he told anyone who obtain the journals to not open the portal. And what did Stan do? He open the portal. And he noticed the twins at scene, where Stan told his brother that they’re his grandniece and grandnephew.

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Of course, more revelations has popped up when finding out that the Stan that we know was Stanford, but his real name is Stanley, meaning that the author’s name is Stanford. So there’s a lot of questioning going on in the first parts of the episode, and that’s where Stan begins to tell the backstory on how all of this came to be.

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Found out that both Stanley and Stanford are from a small beach town in New Jersey. Even though they’re not the most popular, these two have a fantastic childhood from beginning to end, which included the construction of their project, which is rebuilding a boat that they’ve found in a cave and have an interest on traveling around the world. Of course, that thing changes in their teenage years, guessing at their senior year, when Stanford got an admission to a top notch university if his science fair project goes well.

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Which to Stanley, worried him and angers him that if he does get the admission, then he won’t him for years. In which he didn’t know, accidentally broke Stanford’s science fair project, which cost him his admission, which cost him his future. Not to mention, the family’s chances of getting rich, forgot about that one. Which leads to Stanley to being kicked out of his home.

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Stanley did found an opportunity to take care of himself, merchandising. And did it work? Sadly, no. His first invention, a rag, failed when people noticed that it was supposed to take the stains out, but instead, grew more. That’s where he was banned in his home state of New Jersey. His other invention failed as well when in the neighboring state of Pennsylvania when the people there got a band-aid that don’t give them rashes…they give them rashes. And that’s where he got banned in the Keystone State. As for Stanford, he did got into a university, but not his dream college.

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Even though he’s not in his dream college, he made it to the top of his class, majoring in Science. And still have an obsession in finding rare anomalies and that’s where he headed to the town of Gravity Falls, building the shack, researching the paranormal there, and of course, creating the journals. Which hits Stanford in the head when asking the biggest question of them all. And no, it has nothing to do with Half Life 3. It’s where the abnormalities came from. And that’s where he came up to build the portal (which, spoilers, a certain someone told Stanford to build the thing) but not without some support from his old roommate from college, McGucket. The construction is a success and ready to test it out, until things went haywire.

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Yep, McGucket accidentally got caught in the ropes and almost got sucked it if it weren’t for Stanford pulling him out. And what McGucket saw was definitely disturbing yet frightening, almost looked like a warning was given. And by the time McGucket calls it quits, Stanford begins to lose his sanity and quickly turned off the portal and had to call the only person who he can trust, Stanley.
Which, Stanley is worried about Stanford when visiting him in the shack, though he got mentally insane. He almost burned Journal 1 where Stanford attacked Stanley all the way to the underground lab where the portal is at, where Stanley got a burnt mark, that everyone thought it’s a tattoo, and for Stanford…

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Stanford got sucked into the portal by a push from Stanley and his leg tied up by a piece of rope. And the portal closes, trapping Stanford to another universe. Stanley tried to get his brother back from the portal day in and day out, but it won’t work because another two journals (Journals 2 and 3) are required to open up the portal. And of course, haven’t got a bite to eat, doesn’t have enough money when buying a loaf of bread, in which the townsfolk of Gravity Falls noticed that he’s the guy who ran this attraction that the people has talked about and Stanley (now taking Stanford’s name) invites the townsfolk in the convenience store for a tour. Which, the people enjoyed, despite that Lazy Susan got only one eye working due to her other eye hit by the blast.

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And that’s how the Mystery Shack came to be, originally named the “Murder Hut”, which…sounded like a perfect misuse of the name of the shack. Anyway, with years passing by from 30 years to today, the Mystery Shack came to be. Being Mr. Mystery at day, but still trying to get the real Stanford back at night. Which is why he kept it a secret for 3 decades from the world, the town, his family, Dipper and Mabel’s parents, and most importantly, Dipper and Mabel themselves. That could explain how everything came to be from beginning to end, sounded like a prequel. But of course, while Stan finally wraps up his story and Dipper and Mabel forgives him, they forgot that the Government are still after them from resisting arrest. Where Dipper comes up with an idea to get the government away from the shack, by connecting the memory eraser to a stereo to erase the government agents’ minds of this whole situation, not to mention, Stanford telling the Government to back off, pretending that he has an important message to them from Washington, thought it’s some freak meteor shower, which makes the government to leave the area. Everything went back to normal, with of course, Dipper wants to ask Stanford a lot of questions about his experience, but denied when Stanley told the twins to hit the hay and Soos to leave the area, telling Wendy on the phone on what he experienced.

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Thought these two’s problems are going to be forgive and forget. Unfortunately, that’s where it hits downhill when both Stan and Ford makes a deal. For Stan, he can continue living in the shack for the Summer but when Summer ends, he’s getting kicked out. And for Ford, to stay away from Dipper and Mabel from ever getting into more danger. You thought these two are going to apologize, but instead, makes things worst.

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And when Dipper and Mabel overheard what’s going on downstairs, they made a promise that they won’t end up like Stan and Ford, turning against each other before heading off to sleep. To Dipper, that’s fine. For Mabel…major worrying for her. Making it uneasy because I think she fears that it could happen by the time this Summer Vacation is over with.


 

So why did these two episodes got the Number 4 spot of the Top 20 Countdown? I would never imagine that Gravity Falls has taken to a whole new direction for the year 2015. Just as the Summer Vacation begins to reach it’s climax, a lot of shit happens one after another. These two episodes have it all, the suspense, the tension, the feels, the revelations, hell, that shocking ending in both episodes, this has turned into one crazy ride for the fandom. And I know, in this countdown, this isn’t over just yet. Looks like we’re going to wait and see to found out in the distant future. But anyway, that’s it for our Number 4 spot in the Top 20 Countdown. We have finally reached the Semifinals of the Top 20 Countdown as we go to a wedding…gone horribly wrong. As the Top 20 Countdown continues!

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