Twelve years later, Willa Ward (Sofia Reid-Ganzert) celebrates her 12th birthday on the Windy Way. His father Neil (Michael Teigen) gives him a special gift: a box with Willow’s name, which he left for Will before his death. Inside is a necklace with an amulet with a cat’s head.
When he tugs on it, he emits unique magical energy:
That attracts the attention of Wanda (Carolyn Taylor) and Wilma (Lauren McGibbon). The two evil wizards who have been searching for amulets for over a decade. They need talismans to strengthen their powers, so send their mouse claws (Ryan Bale) to get them.
Meanwhile, Willa and her best friends Scout (Ava Augustine). And Lucy (Daphne Hoskins) have a birthday full of Neil’s candy bag (he owns a candy shop in town). If they found a talking mouse on the ceiling with a necklace in its paw, they would, of course, scream, but if they caught a broom, the amulet would lift the broom; finally, one of them climbed under Willa and threw him out of the attic window. When they told Neil their story the following day, he served him too many sweets before bed.
But other people also know the talisman, such as Willa’s teacher, Mrs Juniper (Zibby Allen). But Willa did not understand what the talisman meant.
Wilma and Wanda did not give up; they planned to take Will to a tea party to tell him about the mother they knew back then. Willa leads Scout and Lucy; The witches tried to lull the girls to sweets and chocolates, but Willa just wanted to know something about her mother. At the same time, the witches start chasing the girls to get Will to give them the amulet (they can’t take it from him).
In the end, it helped them escape – even though the witches turned them into girls first:
Willa knew they would see Wanda and Wilma again. As the girls make their way through the dreaded house, Willa finds the “hiding potion” they took; turns the three girls into cats. When he returns, he finds a note from his mother explaining precisely what the amulet is for, specifically that Willa can only become a witch if she “believes in magic”.
In the first few minutes of Scaredy Cats, created by Anna McRoberts and Robert Vince, we thought we were in for 45 minutes of ridiculous, childish horror. It felt like all the shows, especially from the actors who played Wilma and Wanda. We decided that the review would go something like, “Well, that’s going to be something the kids will love, but parents might want to browse TikTok while it’s active.”
But fuck it if we don’t like the show, despite its great child actors and ridiculous situations. This works for two reasons: First, the spooky visual effects are crafted with care and precision. The witch’s house and its spells are terrifying looking, and they don’t come cheap; The talking pet and transforming cat seem well integrated into the action.
The second is Reid-Gantzer’s appearance as Willa.
It’s a clever show, somewhere between premature and stupid, where he mainly acts like a real kid while trying to figure out how to use the magical powers his mother wrote him down.
But the more gripping the story, the more sophisticated the characters’ folly; even candy supplier Willa Neal’s dad gets a little less stupid as the episode progresses. What we want to know is what he knows about his wife/mother, Willa. Was he playing cautiously to protect Will? Or do you not know? And what about Wilma and Wanda’s relationship with Will’s mother?
We don’t expect things to be so bleak, but it does help the experience understand that the story has some dark underpinnings. It remains to be seen whether we will meaningfully investigate them.
Scaredy Cats is a goofy show that’s geared towards kids. But the story is interesting enough, and the VFX is good enough to keep parents busy while their kids watch.