In the world of animation, very few cartoons can beat the spookiness levels that Danny Phantom and Gravity Falls achieve. Danny Phantom is easy — the show is all about ghosts. The creatures of Gravity Falls are a bit more diverse in species, but the show deals with the supernatural. There are two characters from these shows that take the candy when it comes to unleashing the weirdest fantasies in their worlds. From Danny Phantom, the Fright Knight reigns supreme as the spirit of Halloween. From Gravity Falls, Bill Cipher claims the title of ultimate chaos god. Separate, they’re horrifying enough, but it’s their similarities that make this writer wonder how much damage they could wreak if they teamed up.
1. Both Hail From Alternate Dimensions
If your home is the starting grounds for shaping your worldview, then these guys took that idea to heart. Bill Cipher, at least during most of Gravity Falls‘ timeline, lives in the Nightmare Realm. He longs to escape it and to wreak havoc in the human realm, so he uses that as motivation to trick Ford into building a portal between the two worlds. In the meantime, he makes plans for his takeover with his inter-dimensional friends.
The Fright Knight also comes from a swirling dimensional void, the Ghost Zone. He makes a break for the human world as soon as he’s freed (see next section), so we don’t see him much in his own realm. But previous times of living among fellow ghosts and serving King Pariah must surely have inspired his ghoulish ways. After all, what better place to house the spirit of Halloween than a creepy castle?
2. Their Freedom Relies On Crucial Objects
While both characters may be trapped at first, they sure are clever when it comes to tricking people into releasing them. After Ford comes out of the portal, he destroys it to prevent Bill from coming into his world. Unfortunately, this creates a rift, which Ford contains and Bill sets his sights on. If he can destroy the rift, then he’ll gain a physical form and enter the human realm. He eventually succeeds in tricking Mabel into giving him the rift, which he then drops, causing the onset of Weirdmageddon.
Similarly, the Fright Knight depends on some unsuspecting soul to release him. His prison, however, is a pumpkin that sheathes his sword, the Soul Shredder. Once someone pulls it out, like Danny does in “Fright Night,” he’s freed with a puff of smoke. Unlike Bill’s rift though, the Fright Knight’s chaos doesn’t begin until the sword is placed in the ground.
3. They Bring Nightmares to Life
The most pressing reason for why these two should team up lies in their true powers. Both make things weird and horrifying by altering reality around them. Bill can create nearly unbearable creatures, like those in the picture above, with just the point of his finger. The Soul Shredder can transform objects into animated monsters, like when it changes mannequins into zombies or a stop sign into an octopus lady.
Each character also has a unique method for making a specific victim’s nightmares come to life. For Bill, he spreads weirdness bubbles across Gravity Falls, that make whoever they touch go crazy with strange visions. However, the prison bubble he traps Mabel in does the opposite by creating a perfect world that lures its inhabitant into a false sense of security, which in its own right is terrifying.
The Soul Shredder has a similar effect to that of the weirdness bubbles. When the Fright Knight slices someone with it, that person goes to a dimension where their worst fears come to life. Before Danny can stop him, he slices two people, Mr. Lancer and Tucker. Mr. Lancer is sent to a dark area where writing on chalkboards makes him scratch his nails against them. Tucker gets sent to a remote island without any technology or clothes, just a giant pad of paper and a pencil.
4. Their Terror Shares Similar Fates
While this is actually a weakness, both characters’ reigns of terror end in similar ways in that they both get trapped again. For Bill, he gets cornered and erased while in Stan’s mind. For the Fright Knight, sheathing the Soul Shredder in a pumpkin again puts an effective end to his rule. After these events, all of their weirdness gets sucked into a swirling void back to their original dimension. From the eyes of their victims at least, this would be an efficient method for stopping both at the same time.
So, perhaps Bill Cipher and the Fright Knight should not team up for our sakes. As cool as they seem in their respective shows, our world may not be ready for that much power. But even so, the duo would make a spectacular team of terror if they did decide to team up. Separate universes or not, things would definitely get weird.