Hooked on Phobics is an episode of Aaahh!!! Real Monsters from the 4th season.
|Hooked on Phobics|
|Episode||94 (Season 4, Episode 9B)|
|Airdate||November 8, 1997|
|Directed by||Rick Bugental|
|Written by||Steve Skrovan|
|Aaahh!!! Real Monsters|
"Side by Side"
"Spy vs. Monster"
After being injured and humiliated during his last scare, Ickis buys a phobia kit which gives him success, until he meets a human without a phobia.
Ickis attempts to scare a couple kissing inside a car, but ends up getting his foot crushed by the front tire. When this is shown on the viewfinder, the other students laugh at this and The Gromble chastises them for laughing at Ickis' pain. As punishment, he has everyone (excluding Ickis) running a lap around the sewer as Ickis thanks the Gromble for sticking up for him.
Ickis, with his foot in a cast, walks gloomily to his dorm room. He attempts to pack his things to leave the academy and quit when he comes across an ad in an Ultra Monster comic book with easy scares that relies on tapping into humans' phobias. The ad said to act now and they'll throw in their holiday special, for those humans who are afraid of Santa Claus. Liking the idea, Ickis decides to buy the kit. Ickis takes the air conditioner vents through the Power Lifting Championship building and scares a weightlifter named Alexi Korbu Tokov with a spider dangling over him. He then scares a co-pilot named Mississippi Smith out of the biplane with a snake, causing him to land into the lake. Ickis also scares a germaphobic woman by putting a handful of germs in her bed and a couple with hagiophobia by dressing as Santa Claus.
When the scares are shown in the viewfinder back at the academy, Ickis is noticing that nobody's laughing this time. Gromble tells him that was quite an impressive array of scares. He has just one problem: they don't count! Ickis flouts this, saying that "A scare is a scare, is a scare, is a scare". Gromble yells "Wrong!" explaining phobic scares aren't monstrous; the monster is not doing the scaring("The spider, the snake, the costume is doing the scaring."). He adds it's a shortcut and Ickis is too good for that. Ickis justifies that he went through 13 consecutive days without a major humiliation, saying "Every human has a fear". Gromble realizes and tells Ickis that he's going to have to learn the hard way, so he wants Ickis to put his phobia kit to the test. Gromble has him go to a local circus to scare a man named Farfegnuton.
At the circus, Ickis uses all of the things from the phobia kit to scare Farfegnuton, but the lion tamer makes no reaction to any of those things a mouse and snake, and when Ickis dresses up as Santa Claus, Farfegnuton sees through his disguise and is convinced that he is an Easter bunny. So he tosses Ickis into the wide-opened mouth of the lion. But the young monster is narrowly saved by Oblina, who grabs him and swings through the trapeze to safety land onto the overhead catwalk. Oblina and Krumm had been sent to the circus by Gromble to look after Ickis. Ickis tells his friends that he needs the right phobia and the three monsters exit the circus.
Ickis goes to the Monster Novelty Store to search for a new phobia to scare Farfegnuton. But the monster owner of the store tells him that Farfegnuton is not one of the humans with a phobia. Ickis is confused, since the ad in the comic said every human has a fear. The monster says it's true that every human has a fear, but he didn't say every human has a phobia, because there's a difference. The monster owner mocks Ickis when the latter says that he won't fall for his swindles ever again. When the seller continues to mock him, Ickis looms into size and says "Never call me cute!" and the seller got scared. The seller tells him that he is too good for the phobia materials, saying the phobia materials are for "losers".
Back at the circus, Ickis looms into size and scares away Farfegnuton and the lion, as well as all the other acrobats and circus animals. His scare is shown on the viewfinder and Gromble tells him that he didn't need to take the easy way out; Ickis had the potential to do it all along. The seller is then seen introducing the other students to a balloon known as "The Ickis Pump." When he inflates the balloon, it suddenly deflates and the string ties around the seller, sending him flying out of the building. All that is heard at the end is Ickis' high-pitched chuckle.
- Krumm only has one line in this episode and although Oblina is heard laughing along with the other students, and third time she does not have any speaking lines.
- Krumm's only line is "The Gromble sent us to look after you Ickis."
- The snake Ickis pulls out from his phobia kit is the same one he, Krumm and Oblina chased after in Eye Full of Wander.
- The title is an obvious play on words for "Hooked on Phonics" the educational tool for reading that was popluar back in the 1990s.