A Look Back on Danny Phantom Season 1 Episode 15: Public Enemies

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Sam: Danny, you have to do something. If you don’t, who will?

Beware: Spoilers may follow.

The Danny Phantom series sometimes found new and unique ways of challenging the protagonist. This was one of the episodes to do so. The villains push Danny to the extreme and in a surprising twist, Danny manages to win the battle but lose the war.

The story is that ghost zone warden Walker has recaptured all the prisoners Danny helped free in the last episode he appeared in, Prisoners of Love (aside from Danny himself). Walker however decides a prison is too good for Danny and instead decides to turn Amity Park into a prison for his foe. To this end he recruits one of his prisoners, a ghost wolf named Wulf. Walker and his forces launch a mass scale attack on Amity Park while possessing everyone around Danny to make the town turn on him.

The strongest aspect about this episode is how thoroughly Walker executes his master plan. The chaos spread around by Walker’s forces Amity Park merely works as a front to cause fright and hysteria as they silently overshadow any person close to Danny. By the time Danny figures out Walker’s intentions it is too late and Walker’s plan reaches its peak, as he and his forces have already taken over one too many of Danny’s friends and Danny ultimately is forced to hide behind the ghost shield in his house leaving him a sitting duck as Walker continues with his plan by overshadowing the mayor. Even though Danny manages to mount the courage to take action and stop the invasion Walker succeeds nonetheless by making it look like Danny attacked the mayor (and others) at a City Hall meeting thus turning the latter into a monster in the eye of the public.

The episode introduces us to Wulf who proves to be a likable character. He goes out of his way to help Danny and his friends as they free him from Walker’s captivity to the point of even willing to risk being sent back to the ghost zone for the former. What’s sadder is that he only got one more big appearance after this episode.

The episode also seemed to give Walker a second-in command named Bullet. He has a neat enough design but rarely appeared outside of this episode and made him rather one-dimensional.

Although the aspects outside of the premise could have used more polish, the heart of this episode lies in Walker’s plan. This wasn’t something that Danny could physically fight his way out of and even his best attempts to do so backfired as it just furthered Walker’s plans and by the time Walker was disposed of he already succeeded. This cements the whole episode as one of Danny’s biggest hurdles in the entire series.

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