Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Fan Theories: The Babadook: Madness theory- Spoilers Ahead!!

The Babadook seems to split horror fans. Some saw a interesting minimalist creeper and others well i`m not sure what they saw because I really dug this one. So needless to say its not everyone's cup of tea however if you haven't seen it a urge you to not read this. I normally make this a spoiler free blog however there is no way around this one, so you`ve been warned.

Its a long read but I think an interesting one if your a fan of the film.

*******Spoilers Ahead************

Fan Theories: The Babadook:Madness Theory

By Gorehound Mike Vaughn

Like some of the fans already guessed there is no monster Mister Babadook. From frame one the Mother is not quiet right in the head. The following will prove that the Mother is totally bonkers and in turn leaks her madness onto her already unstable son Samuel.

Pre-Book: Events happening you guessed it before the book comes into the story.

Evidence (Scenes to watch closer) :Re-watch the scene at the beginning. Amelia is getting her son ready (Son is also clearly abit odd) and the kid gives her a nice hug, right away she snaps at him and actually shoves him away...Ok that's weird (more about that later)

If you need more proof that the mother is whacked even before the book watch the scene where she is at the sons school. Now as a Mother you just learned your son brought a dangerous weapon that could have fatally wounded another child, I would think the normally reaction would to be take the advice of the teachers. You notice she doesn't seem that bothered by this serious situation and merely suggests talking to him? What?! Further more she gets upset at the teacher and the principal who are just trying to do there job and protect the other children from a disturbed boy.

Orins of Babadook Book: At the party while the other kids are playing the grown up women are at the table talking and try to engage a clearly disturbed blank. One woman mentions she heard she use to be a writer. She replies that she use to write "CHILDREN'S BOOKS" as well as some published magazine articles. Now obviously "Mister Babadook" wasn't a book that was ever published. She made it as a way to deal with her loathing and grief (More about that later) She wrote the book, put it away and totally blacked out the memory of doing it, which is was she is genuinely surprised to see it. Also this would explain why no author name is on it, because it was never published. Home made by a sick woman.

Bugs!: The scene with the roaches really sums up my theory. A common delusion of the mentally is bugs in fact a classic sign of the DT's are seeing phantom critters. When the social workers come they don't see the hole in the wall where the roaches sprang from...Yeah because its not there expect for inside her head. Also note not a single other character sees them but her.

Glass in the Food: This is another really interesting scene. If were to believe there is no supernatural element in this film we must consider who put the glass in the soup. Obviously it had to be either the Mother or the son. Either might have done it to further the sick delirious fantasy of the Babadook being the source of all there troubles. I lend towards the Mother doing it to herself.

Ameila Hates Samuel/Samuel's Issues: Psychologist have proved that lack of bonding with a child at an early age results in serve social and emotional problems. This would explain his socially unacceptable out bursts (or speaking his mind as they point it)  All his actions are symptoms of this.Her lack of  bonding could stem from the Mother suffering for Postpartum depression. She secretly blamed him for her husbands death and never properly bonded with him. In fact deep down she as a lot of unchecked hate for him. Near the end she even says "I wished it was you that died instead of him" wow nice Mom...

Keeping it in the Family: The other thing really interesting about this film is that the whole family is totally whacked. Besides the Mother likes take a look at the other family members. Samuel is dangerous and violent. He actually breaks Ruby's nose after shoving her out of a tree house. The sister Claire is also a piece of work, she has anger issues and when she sees her Sister is mentally unstable doesn't step in and get her medically attention. Even when she reaches out to her via phone she gets totally shut down by Claire. Watch that scene again, she is very cold and unfeeling to her own flesh and blood that is crying out for help.Ruby is also a little spoiled brat.

Incest:There is some slightly implied incest between Mother and son. I pointed out the scene at the beginning where she shoves him for hugging her. But right before he hugs her he caress her cheek which is kinda weird for a child to do.  Its subtle and you only notice it in repeat viewings. Then there is the "bath" scene. The Mother picks Samuel up (dont worry everyone is fully clothed) puts him in a the bath tub. Then remarks how warm it is..Its non sexual in nature however is beyond creepy and intimate and something deeper is at play here. He also pops up during her masturbation session.

Putting it all together: With all the evidence lets put it all together. After the death of her husband on the way to the hospital to have Samuel, she secretly blames him and never bonds correctly with him. So when we see Samuel show affection to her she shoves him away. In order to help her coup she quits writing but makes "Mister Babadook" (also one might wonder if she tried to have it published and got drummed out of children writing because of it? ) and disturbed by her hatred blacks out her creating it and put it away. She uses the monster she penned to justify her feelings for her son, because its not her doing it, its the Babadook. Even her sister Claire says something to the effect that she hates him (Samuel) as well and she just doesn't want to admit it. Fitting together right? Samuel being mainly brought up by a mentally ill woman has affected him as well, one could almost make the case that he shows early signs of sociopaths behaviors. After she rips up the book, she brings it back in repairs it and adds the new bit about her killing the dog and finally her son and herself. As if its something already planned out in her mind. She places it at the doorstep and blacks out doing it. So she finds it and burns it. Also after its burnt it never shows up again...Hmmmm! Finally lack of sleep is sending an already mentally ill woman over the edge. At the end she is wielding a knife and cuts the phone lines.

Could it be safe to say Amelia is the Babadook?

The End: The end of the film might also be a factor in way certain fans did not like this film. Even I have to admit it goes gonzo. I have several theories on the ending.

The Mother actually killed the son:  As she is struggling to fall asleep she sees a news report of a six year old boy named Samuel being murdered in his home, his body being found in the basement. The very place she would strangle him later in the movie. (Hmmm weird right?) We the audience think this is just either in her head or a trick played on her by the "Babadook" But maybe this is actually foreshadowing what really happens? Its also predicted in the book (she created) Notice that towards the end of the film she has no wound from being stabbed in the gut, we see blood but not where she was stabbed.

The next scene its day time and everything seems fine. *Watch closely * Amelia is doing some gardening and we see one single black rose. A symbol of death, its also interesting that shes "planting" something in the ground. Also the boy mentions that his bruised throat is nearly all better. Could she imagined that part out of guilt?

The Last part of the film is a dream: Sleep plays a major factor in this film, more so the lack of. Another simpler theory is that the last half an hour is really just a dream and Amelia finally is getting the rest she badly needs.I find it hard to believe she is stabbed in the gut and is totally fine. Lets not forget feeding a monster worms and Samuel making a bird appear? Really? We are obviously not in reality land. It doesn't fit with the rest of the movie which seems for the most part grounded.

The Father is actually chained in the basement: I admit this is abit far fetched but here it is anyways. Amelias husbands belongings are always kept locked away, we assume this is naturally because she wants to keep them as something of a museum piece. But lets say he's actually locked up downstairs. We even see his clothes hung up on the wall downstairs (again we also can assume the child did this as part of his game.) At one point Samuel says "You wont LET me have a father" which seems rather odd even for him. But your saying to yourself  he died, but maybe people just thought he did? Now they feed him a steady diet of worms. Again the least plausible in the bunch but meh i`m throwing it in there anyways.

In closing: "The Babadook" challenges its audience to think outside the box, Much like the film "Bug" its not a horror film as it is a human study of two very disturbed co-dependent people feeding off each others sickness. When viewed in this way the film actually makes a lot more sense. Its the unclear answers that really make this a brilliant film and I really hope a remake or a sequel doesn't come along as it will try to explain it all for the sake of lazy film goers wanting everything neatly wrapped up in a with a nice bow.

I know this was a long one so I thank you guys for reading it til the end.

As always this is just a theory and for entertainment purposes.


  1. Good explanation :D Just wathced the film last night, and maybe I have to rewatch it later.

  2. Interesting stuff! Although I'd just like to point out that she gets stabbed in the thigh/upper leg, not her stomach. I didn't realise either until I rewatched it. One bit I didn't get is what happened to the guy she worked with? In the bit where he comes over, he just disappears mid-scene and never shows up again in the rest of the movie. Did I miss something, or is it a hint?

  3. The incest theory is far fetched.

  4. Interesting, I realise this is old but I only saw this recently.

    I don't think the mother is the Babadook - I think it represents her guilt over molesting her son or allowing him to molest her.

    First, we see that scene where the boy cuddles her and she moves away. When she asks the boy what book he wants her to read he chooses Mister Babadook, maybe Mister Babafook means something else? Could be interpreted in many ways, why not the Babadook or just Babadook, why Mister, specifically? Book is also red implying passion. She reads part of the book but she stops mid way through - guilt?

    She tries to pleasure herself but her son bursts in screaming the Babadook is here. Look at the wording of the biik - let me in, let me in! Once you let the Babadook in he never goes away.

    Later when her son is in her bed she opens the bedroom door, the Babadook let's itself in and she lies there and does nothing - even how she lies there and reacts is pretty telling as the creature falls on her. The scene with the car could be interpreted as the boy exposing himself - the Babadook is here! While the mother refuses to acknowledge - the insects creeping out of the hole and in the car scene could symbolise how she feels dirty as having let the Babadook in. I mean beatles creeping out of a hole in the's either incredibly overt or a happy accident. What's the significance of the hole and the show that she's lost her mind? I think that's already quite evident by that point, it means something.

    I think the more you look at it like this, watch again - this is obviously all subjective and quite symbolic but it kinda adds up. The end scene in the basement would then imply that the Babadook or the guilt or perhaps desire to let the Babadook back in is still there, but for now suppressed. The son wants to see theBabdook and the mother says no, maybe some day.

    We're led to believe the problem is with her grief over her husband, but I think the Babadook manifests as him because she projects that guilt onto herself from her husbands point of view - what would he think of her?

    In the end she feeds the Babadook worms? Make of that what you will. To be quite honest all through the movie I was seeing things like this, there are probably things I've forgotten but I got that sense from it before I even heard this theory.