"How to Stay Alive in the Woods" is the 5th episode of Dead of Summer.
Deb and the counselors take the campers on an overnight camping trip deep into the woods for an unforgettable experience. As everyone is pitching tents and trying to find the perfect marshmallow roasting stick, Joel grows uneasy about what is happening at Camp Stillwater. Meanwhile, flashbacks feature Joel.
A younger Joel is seen in his older brother, Michael's, room where he records his Michael's impersonations.hey discuss how they will miss each other once Joel goes to camp as the 'geeky kid who no one believe is related to [his cool older brother]'. Joel's brother then gives Joel his favorite Dodger's shirt and says 'let's see them call you geeky in that'. He also tells Joel that 'perception beats reality every time' when Joel states that the shirt is too big for him. As Joel begins to thank Michael, Michael stares into the open window but then brushes it off when Joel asks what's wrong and if he saw something. He says that the only thing he sees 'is a kid who is going to make him late for prom'.
Later, all of Michael's friends are taking pictures and videos while waiting downstairs to head to the limo but Joel's brother has yet to make an appearance. Joel goes upstairs to check on him and notices a mixture of blood and water spilling out from under the bathroom door. Joel cautiously walks into the bathroom and while he is still recording, he finds his brother in the bathtub filled with his own blood with the words 'he will never leave me alone' written in blood on the wall.
Years later, there is a flashback to around the time of Joel's prom. His date,Laura, tells him that he doesn't look dorky and looks more like Bond. She also congratulates him for being 'Mr. Golden Boy' for getting an early acceptance to NYU Film School. She asks him to put her in his movies and he says that she already is and starts recording. He then looks into the mirror and sees the Tall Man appear. While shocked, he checks his camera for evidence but there is nothing there.
Later at his house, he sees the man again and screams 'what do you want!' and pulls out his camera to record him. But again, nothing is there. Joel's father comes outside to ask Joel what is wrong, and Joel blames it on not being able to tie his tie. The two talk about the last prom, Michael's prom, and Joel's father assures Joel that the nightmare was just in Michael's head and that none of it was real. His father also tells him that he is always there to listen to him.
- The title of this episode is named after the book of the same published by author Bradford Angier in 1956.
- The title of this episode was officially confirmed by the Spoiler TV website on May 7, 2016.
Gallery of photographic stills released to promote the episode.
Gallery of videos used to promote the episode.