Seven years ago, Mr. Sparrow bought three puppets from a puppeteer named Eduardo Caleb to perform at the fifth birthday party of Ben and Jenny Renfro. However, the puppets acted out on their own and hurt the two kids. This would leave Ben and Jenny with a fear of puppets for years, though they soon forgot why. When trying to compete with two mean girls named Maria Salinas and Anna Richards in the school variety show, Ben and Jenny, along with Mr. Sparrow's son Jonathan (Nicknamed "Bird") find the three puppets in Mr. Sparrow's attic. They try to practice with the puppets, but Ben begins to suspect that the puppets have a mind of their own.
Soon, one of the puppets emits a strange buzzing noise into Ben's ear. This causes Ben to start to turn into a life-size puppet. The kids find the address of Eduardo Caleb and try to get his help. He tells Ben that the puppets infected him with evil puppet cells which turned him into a puppet. The three puppets he made were rejects filled with dark magic. He turns Ben back into a normal boy again, but then tries to turn Ben into a puppet once again. The three puppets then attack Eduardo as the kids make their escape. At the variety show, they see two strange men in ski masks perform with life-size puppets of Anna and Maria, meaning that they must have followed the three of them but got caught by Eduardo.
Eduardo is a very deceptive individual. He lies to others about his puppets, as well as lies to Ben about his safety after removing the puppet cells. He also comes off as rather insane, having no issue in hurting Ben by turning him into a puppet.