If you loved Twin Peaks, American Gods or Illuminatus! you'll like this cartoon. If on the other hand, you have a misguided "respect" for "beliefs" that "might, after all, be true" regarding Freemasonry, conspiracy theories, or other  subjects covered by Dan Brown or the X-Files, or are easily upset by the display of (purportedly) occult symbolism, pyramids, goats, owls, cryptozoology, and the like, you will probably run screaming to your email program to petition the Disney Channel to take this piece of dangerous programming off the air.

Which will be a shame, since you'll be missing out on a wickedly funny little series from the people who brought you "The Wonderful Misadventures of Flapjack".

Dipper and Mabel, 12-year-old twins,have been sent to Grand-Uncle ("Grunkle") Stan's in Gravity Falls, Oregon on Summer vacation to "get some time outdoors". Which they'll get…if and when he decides to let them have some free time away from the cash register. You see, he, growing bored and needing a little spare cash, turned the first floor of his A-frame into The Mystery Shack, a roadside attraction and gift shop full of unmysterious mysteries, fake fossils, stuff (including lots of eyes) in jars, and a free-range goat. He carries a walking stick with an 8-ball knob, wears a fez and an eyepatch (which he switches sides on at will), and never seems to get a close shave. Mitigating his efforts to run a tight ship is Zeus (spelled "Soos"), his way-cool handyman, and Wendy, 15 year old Hot Chick. There are the usual middle-school obsessions -- first crushes, Queen Bees, trying to grow up fast while still unsure what that is, differing growth …and then…

Well, there's a whole lot of stuff going on behind the scenes. For one thing, the place is infested, simply crawling, with Ivory-Billed Woodpeckers. And there are gnomes living in the hills. Dipper found a book (labeled "3") full of lore about the town, that mysteriously trails off. And then, let's see…Gideon the Kid Psychic. A haunted convenience store. Mabel's Asian girlfriend, into trans-humanism. Mechanical sea monsters in inland lakes. Strange locals. A butch girl, who might be a lesbian. Vengeful wax figures. Cabalistic cyphers. Nonstop Illuminati references. Psychedelic Swiss candy. Dimensional distortion crystals. Time paradoxes. Doppel-, triple- and decagangers (including a Paper Jam). Alternate American histories. And then, Grunkle isn't quite what he seems…

Conspiracy theorists (you know, the ones that claim Lady Gaga is the Whore of Babylon because she sometimes poses with one eye covered) are in a firestorm of speculation. How can they, how dare they, include this material on a children's show? And…why do they get so much right, and yet…mock the lore that only a few (outside of the Bilderburgs, the Trilateral Commission, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Federal Reserve and a whole lot of slightly hysterical websites) would have any business knowing? Are they getting things under the radar, or not-so-subtly pushing a not-so-hidden agenda? Or is it just that they're skeptical enough to mine the rich vein of lore these self-appointed experts love to quote, and, like the Friday the Thirteenth parties where people enter under ladders, dine under a canopy of open umbrellas and freely cavort with black cats, simply don't care that some people consider owls to be a symbol of death, circles inscribed in triangles are symbolic of the New World Order, and that five-pointed stars are a Christian symbol of evil.. a Pagan symbol of good...well, let's say they've gotten so overladen with "mystical" interpretations lately that they might as well be meaningless.

Art style is a little less cute than Flapjack, and not so much American Federalist (but still manages a good Pioneer style now and then). Scarier than most Disney (you're going to hear the word "dead" used a lot…and were those sheep shears going to cut out Dipper's tongue?) but less so than a lot of classic fairy tales. Kids will love learning about cryptography -- there's a secret message in every set of credits. You're going to like this one…if they get to do a second season….

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