With every twist and turn in Scott Cawthon’s FNAF universe, the concept of death becomes increasingly perplexing. Some characters meet a tragic fate in the blink of an eye, like Elizabeth Afton in the clutches of Circus Baby or Evan Afton in the jaws of Fredbear. Others, however, manage to survive against all odds.
Enter Michael Afton, son of William Afton and sibling to Elizabeth and Evan. Michael’s journey in the series begins with him as a mischievous brother, tormenting Evan, also known as the “Crying Child.” But the consequences of his actions come crashing down on him in the form of the infamous Bite of ’83, an event that forever changes Michael’s life.
Following the bite, Michael embarks on a dangerous path to atone for his sins. He immerses himself in the dark side of Fazbear’s Entertainment, subjecting himself to horrors that result in not one, but two deaths. It may sound unbelievable, but to understand this seemingly unrealistic tale, we need to trace it back to its origins.
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Circus Baby: The First Evil Animatronic
The closure of Freddy Fazbear’s Pizzeria after the Missing Children’s incident was a significant blow to Fazbear’s Entertainment. As the company founders, Henry Emily and William Afton knew they needed a comeback, although William had a more sinister agenda.
Having already killed five children during the Missing Children’s incident, William’s twisted mind hatched an even darker idea. What if there was an animatronic specifically designed to carry out his killings? An animatronic that could hide the victims’ bodies, just as William had disposed of the others? To achieve this, William needed an animatronic larger than usual, one that wouldn’t raise suspicions.
Thus, Circus Baby was born. Henry, fascinated by the state-of-the-art endoskeleton design, approved the idea. Circus Baby could sing, dance, and even inflate balloons using a built-in helium tank at her fingertips. But little did Henry know about Circus Baby’s true purpose – luring and capturing children with ice cream before trapping them with her built-in Scooper.
The Tragedy at Circus Baby’s Pizza World
Despite the presence of a fully functional animatronic, Fazbear Entertainment decided to open “Circus Baby’s Pizza World,” a highly successful venture. Business was thriving, children were having a blast, until Circus Baby claimed the life of William’s own daughter, Elizabeth.
Elizabeth, fond of Circus Baby, longed to play with her. But William, although driven by a bloodlust for children, refused to let his own offspring fall victim to his sinister schemes. Unaware of her father’s true nature, Elizabeth persisted in her desire to play with Circus Baby whenever possible.
One fateful day, during another child’s birthday party, Elizabeth sneaked into Circus Baby’s room. Circus Baby, true to her programmed tactics, began dispensing ice cream to lure Elizabeth closer. And then it happened – in a flash, Elizabeth’s screams were lost amidst the excitement of the other children.
Bite of ’83: Michael’s Regrettable Mistake
The loss of Elizabeth left William disoriented, torn between taking responsibility or denying his involvement. But amidst his own indecision, one thing was clear – his youngest son, Evan, had an unwavering fondness for the animatronics. Simply forbidding Evan from playing with them was no longer enough, not after what had happened to Elizabeth.
Desperate to break Evan’s attachment to the animatronics and instill a genuine fear, William resorted to a drastic method. For five consecutive nights, he filled Evan’s dreams with nightmares, nightmares in which he had to confront scarier versions of the very animatronics he adored.
Evan’s terrifying experiences are chronicled in FNAF 4, where players inhabit his nightmares. Over five nights, Evan desperately tries to survive Nightmare Freddy, Nightmare Chica, Nightmare Bonnie, and Nightmare Foxy.
The Fated Birthday Party
William’s plan to keep Evan away from the animatronics backfired when Michael forcibly organized a birthday party at Fredbear’s restaurant. Michael, accompanied by his friends, paraded Evan towards the stage where Fredbear, the animatronic Evan feared the most, awaited.
In tears and having a mental breakdown, Evan watched helplessly as his brother and friends subjected him to this torment. And then it happened – Michael pushed Evan’s head into Fredbear’s mouth, trapping him inside the very thing he feared. In an instant, Evan’s tears triggered a spring-lock failure, crushing his head and resulting in the tragic Bite of ’83.
Michael’s First Death
After the Bite of ’83, Michael vanished from the scene, remaining hidden within the Afton family. However, when his father, William, met his demise, Michael reemerged. Determined to find his father’s whereabouts, he sought answers at Circus Baby’s Entertainment and Rentals, his father’s most recent venture.
By securing a job as a Late-Night Technician, Michael infiltrated the facility, risking his life to gather information. On the first two nights, he made little progress in his search for his father, spending most of his time avoiding the lurking Funtime animatronics while performing his duties. But on the third night, he fell prey to Funtime Foxy and was kidnapped, losing consciousness in the process.
When he awoke, Michael found himself next to Circus Baby and Ballora, discovering that his late sister, Elizabeth, now inhabited Circus Baby. She revealed that the other animatronics were also haunted, and Michael had to free the souls of the deceased children trapped within them. Determined, Michael set out to undo his father’s actions, starting with Circus Baby.
The Scooping Room Incident
Circus Baby instructed Michael to deliver her to the Scooping Room, where her endoskeleton would be removed. As he entered the room, surrounded by the wrecked remains of other Funtime animatronics, Michael encountered Ennard and fell into Circus Baby’s trap.
Ennard, an amalgamation of the destroyed Funtime animatronics, yearned for freedom. But they needed a disguise – a human form that would allow them to escape the facility undetected. Seizing the opportunity, Ennard used the Scooper to rip out Michael’s insides, possessing his body.
Although it was believed that Michael had died, he miraculously regained consciousness when Ennard eventually departed due to his body’s decomposition.
Michael’s Second Death
Michael, though alive, remained determined to fulfill his mission. With a clue leading him to Fazbear Frights, a newly opened horror attraction, he suspected that the worn-out animatronic on display could be none other than his father. Infiltrating the attraction as part of the nighttime staff, Michael intended to investigate.
During his time at Fazbear Frights, Michael discovered that the animatronic, Springtrap, was indeed his father. In a final act, Michael set the place ablaze, incinerating Springtrap and the other haunted animatronics, releasing the souls of William Afton’s victims. But William survived, returning as Scraptrap.
However, Michael’s story does not end there. Upon learning of the reopening of Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza Place, he assumed the role of manager. With Henry’s guidance, Michael sought to end the cycle of violence by salvaging the remaining haunted animatronics. In a destructive finale, Michael salvaged Scraptrap, Scrap Baby, Molten Freddy, and L.E.F.T.Y., before Henry set the entire restaurant ablaze.
As the four animatronics perished, Henry revealed that he had a plan to save Michael, an innocent child who should never have been involved. But Michael, feeling the weight of his actions, chose to stay and meet his final destiny. Goodbye, Michael.
Michael Afton’s character development from a mischievous brother to the series’ main protagonist has been a riveting journey. His determination to uncover the truth and bring closure to the haunting incidents sets him apart. While others remained idle, Michael faced horror head-on, sacrificing his life not once, but twice.
Through his selfless actions, Michael attempted to bring an end to the cycle of violence that plagued the FNAF series. Though tragic, his story serves as a testament to the lengths one can go to make amends and find justice, leaving behind a legacy that will forever be remembered in the world of FNAF.