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'A Babysitter's Guide to Monster Hunting'

This horror movie combines elements of horror and babysitting with Black representation.

A Babysitter's Guide to Monster Hunting (2020)

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A Babysitter’s Guide to Monster Hunting is a 2020 Netflix movie that is centered around Halloween. Recruited by a secret society of babysitters, a high schooler battles the Boogeyman and his monsters when they nab the boy she’s watching on Halloween.

This Halloween movie features a representative main character. Kelly Ferguson (Tamara Smart) is played by a Black actress, giving a strong representation of Black women. Two other Black actresses are given supporting roles. Rachel Talalay is our female director.

The movie opens with a scene of Kelly lying in her bed on a stormy night. Kelly sees shadows on the bedroom walls, hears thunder claps, and notices a creepy hand opening her door. The creature is a monster trying to attack her. The camera zooms in on her face as the monster prepares to attack. The scene fades to black, then transitions to Kelly waking up in her classroom, revealing to the viewers that this is all a dream.


This movie is a combination of a typical high school setting and fantasy elements. Kelly is struggling with her typical adolescent life; she is a high school freshman who is embarrassed to be called “Monster Girl” because when she was five years old, she had nightmares about monsters under her bed. She is surprised when her mother gives her a babysitting job on the weekend of the Halloween Party. She is unable to refuse the offer because, according to her mother, the woman who is looking for a babysitter is nicknamed “the Ice Queen”. This nickname gives viewers a literal image of the woman herself, as she is dressed like “the Ice Queen”; her white dress, makeup, and tiara comply with the nickname. “The Ice Queen” gives Kelly a list of strict restrictions on what her son Jacob can and can’t have.

Jacob doesn’t like his mother very much because of her strict restrictions. When Jacob admits to Kelly that he doesn’t want to go to bed early because he has nightmares about monsters under his bed, Kelly realizes she and Jacob have much more in common than she realizes. She uses her previous experiences with monsters and bad dreams to help Jacob; this forms a friendship. This friendship further expands when Jacob is kidnapped by monsters in the middle of the night and Kelly goes out to rescue him.

Kelly’s conflict is her fear of bad dreams and monsters. This conflict drives the plot into action. There are animated monsters and real humans that coexist in the same world. As mentioned in the movie’s title, ‘A Babysitter’s Guide to Monster Hunting,’ Kelly teams up with another high schooler student named Liz to battle and hunt down monsters.

What starts out as a typical Saturday night has turned into the spookiest adventure of a lifetime. There are mystery elements in this fantasy Halloween movie; Kelly and Liz uncover clues leading to the hideout where Jacob is being held, hostage. Boogeyman is the main antagonist. Like all Halloween movies, there are scary elements such as lights flickering and thunder sounds.

The conclusion shows viewers how Kelly enjoys her babysitting job now, as she has saved Jacob’s life. Jacob likes her so much that he wants her to babysit him again, which she agrees to do.