If you mess with Lila Fowler, you get it back ten fold…SVH SUPER THRILLER: Deadly Summer

19 Aug

It’s another summer at Sweet Valley High and the Wakefield twins are solving crime at the Sweet Valley News.

The latest craze sweeping SVH, courtesy of Jessica and Lila, is the Ouija board.

But instead of using it to connect with the dead or, say, Lila’s absent mother, they use it to ask if Jessica will ever be on TV.

Elizabeth finds this extremely amusing, and says to Lila in a very condescending tone, “I don’t understand how you can waste your time on something so incredibly silly. I know Jess can be a space agent, but I thought you were smarter, Lila.”

Laugh all you want Liz. ‘Cause in about 30 books time Jessica does in fact land a role on the TV Soap “The Young and the Beautiful.”

Lila gets very pissed off and storms out of the Dairi Burger, which she is entitled to, seeing as her Ouija Board ends up being very accurate and Elizabeth is very rude to bring logic into this.

However, the ghostwriter describes Lila as “insecure” which I disagree with.

Back at Fowler Crest, Lila dreams up a devious scheme to get revenge on Liz once and for all, and Jessica agrees to go along with it, for shits and giggles.

There is lots of Lila- Jess camaraderie in this one, which I Iove. Beats Liz and Enid’s one sided friendship any day.

Lila’s plot is to rig the Ouija Board and spook Liz out when she sees its predictions coming true. First up, they get the Ouija board to tell them that the Endless Summer concert scheduled for the following weekend has been cancelled. Because Lila is rich and well connected, she finds out before the Sweet Valley News gets the scoop. So she and Jessica get Liz to join in, and they move the glass so the letters spell out “CONCERT” “DELAY” “WEEK”. Far out. No wonder Jessica’s muscles are tired.

When the plug is officially pulled on the concert the next day, Liz gets the spooks.

Look who’s gullible now,” sniffs Lila, and I laugh mercilessly. Ha, ha, ha!

Their prank continues, and the Ouija board tells Liz where her missing diary is – on top of the refrigerator! Creepy! That Wakefield refrigerator sure has a mind of its own – just ask Olivia.

But best of all is when Lila uses the Ouija board to convince Liz that Bruce Patman has a terminal illness that he is trying to keep a secret. Lila is one smart woman – she knows that a disease is enough to win Liz’s pity vote and make her forget everything she hates about Bruce Patman, which shows that not only is Liz a gullible fool but also an incredibly false friend. Liz turns out to be a complete suck, hanging out with Bruce at home, and at the Beach Disco, while her real boyfriend, Jeffery, is away at soccer camp and powerless to stop this.

Lila and Jessica scheme by Lila’s pool:

“What should Bruce have?” Lila added.

Jessica snickered. “How about the plague?”

“Can you die of leprosy?” Lila asked with a malicious giggle. “I mean, if he’s got to go, he might as well have something really interesting.”

Ha ha. But why would Lila take her little scheme this far? Read on:

If everything worked out as planned, Elizabeth and Bruce would be spending lots of time together  before Jeffery got back from camp. A tender romance would develop, and when Jeffery returned, Sweet Valley’s most rock solid couple would be on the rocks.

And then Jeffery will be free. For me. Lila grinned.

Lila sighed blissfully as she stopped the car in front of her house. 

“Lila Fowler, you are a genius”, she said aloud.

When Liz starts going out of her way to see Bruce and shoulder pat him, he is all for it. They even wind up swaying together at the Beach Disco:

Poor Bruce, Elizabeth thought. You don’t have to pretend. She rested her cheek against his shoulder and sighed. Poor Bruce.

But let’s not forget that this is a Super Thriller, which means – a psycho killer is on the loose!

Donald Redman, a man with a history of mental illness, has escaped from Sweet Valley’s psychiatric facility and is on the run. As star Summer-intern-reporter for the news, Liz has the inside scoop.

That night, Elizabeth is babysitting a kid called Max for his mother, a woman called Elsa Bartel. When Liz mentions her exciting news story, Elsa gets all weird and decides to stay home with her son, instead. I get the feeling that Elsa knows something. Maybe Liz will use her journalist instinct to come to that conclusion – but no.

At the office the next day, a strange man rings up and says a bomb is going off at the cinema. Elizabeth has this reaction: “It was Redman, it had to be!”

Of course! I mean it’s not like there’s ever been another psycho killer on the loose in Sweet Valley! Such a logical conclusion!

Elizabeth goes to rescue Jessica, who is of course at the movies. But there is no bomb. Redman is all talk, for now.

Liz does some psychological profiling and finds out that Redman is an ex-SVH alum who was taunted at school, and tried to murder his parents as a result. He also stalked and kidnapped a beautiful blonde student called Melanie, who spurned his advances.

At the Bartels’ that night, a weird man drops by looking for Elsa and creeps Liz out by asking her name, and going on about how she looks like someone he once knew. He covers himself by claiming to be an old college friend of Elsa’s.

OMG, It’s the killer, Liz! Duh!

Back at the Wakefields, Jessica wants out of Lilas’ cruel plot. She tells Bruce that Liz only interested in him because she thinks he’s dying. Bruce thinks this is awesome, and becomes more determined to keep stringing Liz along. Ha. He’s going to milk this for all it’s worth. Serves Liz right for being such a meddlesome bitch. Leprosy or not, it’s still the same Bruce.

Tensions are rife when Jeffery makes a surprise visit home, and finds Bruce and Liz in the Wakefield’s kitchen. Instead of kicking Bruce out, Elizabeth decides all three of them can go to the stadium together to watch the football game. The bomb threats must be following the Wakefields, because that night, there is another bomb scare. As she runs off screaming, Liz sees the man who knocked on Elsa’s door the other night. Even though a 30-something-year old is at a high school football game, she still thinks nothing of it. Score ten for super sleuth Wakefield.

And I just have to laugh at the Wakefield’s dinner conversation the next night.

Apparently the locals are getting ready to defend themselves, because of the cops’ inability to catch this maniac. Jessica agrees, “the police are a bunch of dopes.”

But Ned gets his back up, saying, “I say let the police handle it! They’re trained to deal with this sort of thing. This is just the type of situation that leads to vigilante justice.”

Riiiiight. An interesting view, given the type of “vigilante justice” his family have been involved in:

A boat chase to finally wipe out John Marin, who Ned stoutly refused to report to the cops.

Allowing Steven to lie to police and run his own investigation into the fire at Fowler Crest.

Letting the twins run numerous investigations across Sweet Valley and London under the guise of “journalism” – even the Scotland Yard was no match for super sleuths Jessica and Elizabeth as they tracked down the werewolf responsible for killing off half the royal family.

So, whatever Ned.

The story is coming to its dramatic end –

Bruce and Jeffery have a run-in at the music store over who is actually hanging out with Liz that night. Although Jeffery and Liz have a date that night, Bruce decides to make mischief, and calls up Liz, telling her he feels sick, and weak.

Liz pity drives over to the tennis courts at SVH to meet “poor Bruce”.

Jeffery, thinking he’s being cheated on, hightails it to the school, and finds Liz and Bruce in a warm embrace. I do not know how she justifies this to herself as “compassion”. I really do not. Bruce lets it slip that he’s not actually sick and just in it for the groping, and Liz storms off into a broom cupboard to sulk.

At home, a weird premonition comes over Jessica. She and Lila use the Ouija board one last time, and find out that Liz is actually in trouble! They go over to the Bartels, for some reason, and Elsa confesses that she is Redmans’ sister.

Nice of her to fess up, while he’s off plotting to kill the babysitter.

Redman has in fact followed Liz over to the school, thinking that she is Melanie, the girl who once rejected him. I guess Liz’s Californian good looks are not that special, huh. Another doppelganger – whoda thought. After four pages of crazed ravings, Redman finally detonates a massive bomb.

There is a big dramatic scene with lots of smoke – but can you guess who lives and who dies?

Yep, its goodbye to another psycho killer. And Bruce, Liz and Jeffery all survive.

I just wish Lila and Bruce had spied each other through the smoke haze and got it together. But I guess I will wait another six years for that. And then another fifteen years to find out that it was only ever a fling….

4 Responses to “If you mess with Lila Fowler, you get it back ten fold…SVH SUPER THRILLER: Deadly Summer”

  1. Daniella August 20, 2011 at 4:42 am #

    Lila and Bruce are beyond awesome in this one! I always liked Lila and Jessica’s friendship, too. Even though they competed with each other a lot, they made a good team and really looked out for each other. Unlike Enid and Elizabeth, whose friendship was so screwed up that in an effort to get away from it, Enid became an alcoholic at SVU.

    • winstonegbert August 21, 2011 at 8:03 pm #

      Ha. Never made that Enid-alcohol connection.

  2. Olivia August 21, 2011 at 4:10 pm #

    Team Lila&Bruce!

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