Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Titty Tuesday: Bad Time For Sex

This is the second week in a row I've tried to post this. Last week, I had it all written out, and I took a ton of screenshots from my DVD to post along with it, only to find they were all BLANK. My computer was moving really slowly, it was 1AM, and I didn't have the patience to mess with it any longer, so I gave up, thinking I would do it this week, with a different program. THIS week - I can't find the DVD anywhere. ANYWHERE. And any of the videos I've found of that scene online are boob-free, and it's not on netflix instant play. The universe does not seem to want us to see LaVerne's breasts. I'm posting the rest of it anyway. So, I apologize in advance for the lack of actual titties in this post, I apologize for the poor quality of the screenshots I DO have, and I will endeavor to do better with next week's Titty Tuesday. Go out and buy a copy of Creepshow 2 and watch it yourself, it's a good flick with some nice boobage. -Spooki

It's somewhat serendipitous that Creepshow 2 showed up in my DVD player unexpectedly last week (as mentioned in my last post). After I announced Titty Tuesdays the other day, I was thinking about various scenes that made an impression on my youthful mind, and one of the first ones I thought of was The Raft.

The Raft terrified me back when I first saw it. I was always a huge fan of Creepshow, and while I didn't think most of Creepshow 2 held up as well (I still loved it, just not as much as the first one), Creepshow 2's The Raft scared me almost as much as the original Creepshow's The Crate had. The whole concept of the man-eating oil slick and the people trapped in the middle of nowhere, exposed to the elements, gave me chills; but the scene that really got me was the one appropriately titled "Bad Time For Sex" on the DVD chapter menu.

The tale of The Raft is simple: two couples go out to a lake in the early fall; tourist season is over, it's deserted, but it hasn't yet gotten cold enough for them to bring the wooden raft in from the middle of the lake. The (supposedly-college-age-even-though-they-easily-look-thirty) kids decide to swim out to the lake for one last hurrah. They get there, only to get trapped on the raft by one big piece of meat-eating sludge. It eats a duck, then it eats Randy's girlfriend, then it eats LaVerne's boyfriend. Randy and LaVerne are trapped on the raft, and they agree to sleep in shifts, taking turns watching the troublesome predator, as it has already proven it can ooze up between the slats of the raft and suck them through if they're not careful.

It comes to pass that LaVerne is sleeping and Randy is dutifully taking his turn watching the oil slick. Eventually he gets bored at the prospect of being eaten alive, and can't help but notice that LaVerne is passed out and not wearing a whole heck of a lot. Ever the gentleman, he slooooowly makes his move on the slumbering woman, easing her sweatshirt up, up, up, until he can see and yes, even play with her boobies just a little. [INSERT MANY SHOTS OF HORROR TITTIES!]

But Randy loses his nerve as she starts to show signs of wakefulness and quickly pulls her shirt down, covering her back up. He's all ready to whistle and look totally innocent if she so much as glances his way.

Oh, but Randy won't be getting the ol' "you were touching me while I was sleeping, weren't you, pervert?!" lecture today! LaVerne has bigger things on her mind.

what IS that?
Namely, THE MAN-EATING OIL SLICK. It evidently noticed that Randy was preoccupied and took that time to sneak under the raft and firmly attach itself to his rape victim friend's face.

oh dear GOD

As it continues to pour over her body and begins dissolving her flesh, she holds her hands out to him in supplication, screaming. "Randy! Raaaannddeeeeeee! What the fuck were you thinking, Randy?! You were thinking with your dick, you rapist bastard, and now this thing is EATING ME RANDEEEE!"
(OK, she actually just screams his name repeatedly in disbelief and pain, but I like to add in the other parts because it makes me feel better.)
He just stands there looking stupid.

this is the face of a date rapist
well, she used to have nice tits...
LaVerne's titties are soon consumed, and though we are treated to a nicely horrific semi-skeletal show of her, the titties remain covered. And Randy's fate? Well, you'll have to check out the movie to find out!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Passing On The Horror Gene

When I was pregnant with my first child, I had dreams of my budding horror minions. I wasn't sure exactly how many children I'd end up having, but in the fantasies of my Future Life, I envisioned a gaggle of enthusiastic mini-Spookses helping out with my (someday) Professional Haunted Attraction. My daydreams were filled with the delighted screams and shrieks of our victims as we gleefully torturedentertained them.

It become apparent soon after my son was born, however, that the horror gene hadn't grabbed him from birth. Monster toys were rejected. "This Is Halloween" was voted TOO SCARY.

Baby Drake says EFF THIS MOVIE!

My Addams-family dreams shattered into a million pieces as I sadly accepted the fate that my (then two year old) son was, to put it bluntly, a chicken. I told myself, back when I decided to be a parent, that I would love and accept my children no matter what lifestyles they chose to follow, and I stand by my word! Even if that lifestyle IS (sob) devoid of horror.

I haven't lost hope for the boy though. True Blogger Confession? I too was born a chicken. Yes, you read that right: Spooki was a grade-A CHICKENSHIT. Couldn't stomach the idea of a horror movie until I was easily 12 or so. I have some distinct youthful horror movie memories: sneaking downstairs while my parents were watching An American Werewolf In London, only to catch the scene where the wolf rampages across Piccadilly Circus and a head goes flying. At least, I think that's what happens. I haven't seen the movie in years (come to think of it, I'm not sure I've actually ever watched the entire thing as an adult, though I've seen at least most of it in parts), but my child's brain has this image burned into my head, an image of a body trapped between two cars and a head that goes flying down the street as this terrifying wolf-beast runs loose about the town. I caught one glimpse of that scene and went running back to my bed, terrified. I'm not sure I slept that night.

stay on the road, steer clear of the moors, and for the love of GOD, don't sneak downstairs at five years old to see what your parents are watching on TV
Or the time my mom tried to get me to watch Poltergeist when I was 8 or so. I looked just like little Carol Anne as a child, they tell me, and I think that somehow my mother was convinced this would make me love the movie. Because every kid wants to see the movie where their TV doppelganger gets sucked into the closet, kidnapped by malevolent ghosts, right? Yeah, I didn't even make it past the scene where the PET BIRD DIED.

I don't understand what possessed my mother to constantly try to terrify me. 

So, friends, I was no champion of the horror film as a kid, and yet I still turned out OK. I haven't given up on my boy yet.

My girl came along two years later, and it was evident nearly from birth that she would be different. For one thing, as an infant, she growled. There were no coos and ga-gas or goo-goos from my sweet little daughter, but she did a great Linda Blair impression. She took to anything monsterish immediately, laughing in delight at monster toys, books, frightening halloween decorations. And movies. From the time she was old enough to start indulging in that form of media, she has always been attracted to the frightful. It's nearly impossible to scare her, and if you do catch her with a good startle, she laughs uproariously afterwards. She continuously surprises and delights me with the things she takes an interest in.

Take tonight: her brother was upstairs playing half an hour of Moshi Monsters before bed, and so I was going to let her play a half an hour of Wii downstairs. But neither of the Wii-motes was charged, so that was a bust. So I tried to put on a show for her using our Netflix box, but technical difficulties prevented this. Frustrated, I turned to the trusty DVD player. The problem? All the kids' DVDs had been packed into a carrying case two months ago and toted along on our road trip to Florida, and I had NO idea where they were. I started rifling through some of our DVDs, hoping to find something acceptable. While doing so, I flipped on the DVD changer absentmindedly. The first movie in the changer loads, the title menu starts, and immediately I see The Creep standing on the back of a truck, mugging theatrically for the camera.

you'd think he would be the terror of three-year-olds everywhere... 
"Who is that guy?" she asked, staring at the screen.
"That's The Creep. This movie is Creepshow 2. It's a grown-up movie, honey."
"I want to watch this guy."
"No, baby, that one's definitely a grownup scary movie."
"I WANT TO WATCH THAT ONE!" (she's a bit of a pistol too.)
I look at the DVDs in my hand. "How about this one, baby? The Adventures of Superman?"
"mmm... no. I don't want that one right now."
I flip to the next DVD in the pile.
"What's that one?"
"That? Oh, that's... The 'Burbs."
"What's that one about?"
"It's... about... a creepy family that moves into a neighborhood, and everyone thinks they might be killers."
"OK. I want to watch that one."

That's my kid. Eschewing superhero cartoons for movies about creepy killer families. I guess I might get my little Wednesday Addams after all.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Coming Soon: Titties, Titties, Ass and Titties! And Wang.

So I was in the shower and I was thinking about tits. (That's pretty much how every blog post ever written should start from now on, in my opinion.) Specifically, tits in horror movies. They're pretty much a staple. Oh, I know that it doesn't float everyone's boat, and you've got your folks that wish there was LESS T&A in horror films, or that think maybe a 'smart' horror film doesn't NEED tits, but me? I love some horror movie boobie action. One of my top horror movie scenes ever involves my favorite Scream Queen, her tits, and a tube of lipstick (bonus points if you can Name That Film!).

It also occurred to me that, while I can easily start naming off horror movies with ample breastitude, I can't readily recall films with abundant wang, or even much wang at all. I love some T&A as much as the next person, but where's the D&A?? (dicks & ass; W&A doesn't quite have the same ring to it.)

Maybe someone else on the internet is already cataloguing these things, and a quick google search would give me all the horror T&A and D&A I could possibly want. (Though I suspect googling anything involving tits, asses, wangs or dicks will bring me to precisely the kind of sites that would be more suitable for my other blog.)

See, I Googled 'horror wang' images and this is what I got: A VAMPIRE FLESHLIGHT.
Maybe it's out there. I didn't look, because I like to pretend I'm the first person on the planet to have brilliant ideas. What brilliant idea, you may ask?

Why, some new features for the blog, of course! Titty Tuesday, for one. Wang Wednesday, for another. And, a propos of nothing, some sort of day where I feature awesome movie quotes. My thinking being that I will catalog titties, ass, wang, and awesome movie quotes as I encounter them during the week, and when the appropriate day comes, I will share them with you, my devoted blog readers. (I'm pretty sure that's only my husband at this point, but I know that if I post them, They Will Come. 'They' might only be perverts and weirdos, but hey, I'll be with my own kind at least.)

This is a nearly-accurate representation of how my husband and I met. It even looks like us.
And if I have a dry week where I don't encounter such things (SAD PANDA), I'll have to plumb the recesses of my perverted mind and post some old favorites. Or maybe I'll share some reader favorites from time to time.

So, reader homework!

1) What are your favorite titty (or female ass) scenes in horror media? (movies, tv, books, whatever, I won't discriminate)

2) What are your favorite wang (or male ass) scenes in horror media?

3) What day should I do 'awesome horror quotes I have encountered this week', and what should I call it? I like things that have a nice ring to them, and there's no Q day of the week. Quote Quaturday just isn't doing it.

Monday, July 5, 2010

My Top 10 Willy-Inducing Moments

I saw this first on the most excellent horror blog Day Of The Woman, but she was prompted by Andre at The Horror Digest to make HER list. Either way, they both encourage us to sally fur... sally firr... sally FORTH and post our OWN top 10 list of "willy inducing moments" from horror films. As Andre notes in her post, fear is an entirely subjective response, which is why there are probably going to be things on my list that you will laugh at. These are the first ten things that I thought of, ordered from least to most scary to me. It's not my definitive list by far, as it's somewhat off the cuff and it's entirely possible there are traumas I have blocked completely that only therapy will resurrect. If that should happen, I'll add to or amend the list. But for now, here goes!

10. The Fly II: mutated dog scene

This one is definitely a kindertrauma event, as repeated viewings as an adult failed to terrify me as much as this scene did when I first saw it. But it still hurts me deep inside. I've always had a deep and abiding love for golden retrievers and any dog resembling them, and when they sent that dog - poor mutated little Eric Stoltz's only friend - through the machine only to have it burst forth as this hideous mangled THING, and then later when he finds that they kept the suffering dog alive, OH, my young self was horrified as never before. Those MONSTERS.

Kindertrauma's excellent write-up on The Fly 2, complete with mutated dog photos

9. Gravedancers: dead in the bed

This movie was terrible, pretty much unredeemable in my opinion, but I had really high hopes when I first saw the trailer. I love a well-crafted ghost story, and ghosts are one of the few scary things that even as an adult can effectively give me the heebie-jeebies. I've also always been incredibly creeped out by things with bulging and/or colorless 'dead' eyes. Finally, I'm especially sensitive to situations where people are extra vulnerable, such as when they're asleep. The scene in the trailer where the guy seems to be trying to wake up his wife / girlfriend, and she rolls over only to be a horrible bulging dead-eyed ghost creature, scared the crap out of me. (Too bad the movie fell completely flat.)

8. Evil Dead: Cheryl in the cellar

I first saw the Evil Dead back when I was oh, probably 11 or so. I was sleeping over at a friend's house, and her parents had gone out for the evening, leaving us in the charge of my friend's older sister and a couple of HER friends, who were also spending the night. I was a GIANT chicken as a kid too. The older girls decided to watch Evil Dead, and bring us younger ones along for the ride. The tree rape scene and creepy 'we're alone in the woods and bad stuff is going to happen' vibe almost had me fleeing the room, but Cheryl in the cellar with her Deadite face, trying to get out, my poor little heart couldn't handle it. I jammed a Dorito in my eye (I was aiming for my mouth, but missed in my terror) and fled the room.

You should know that this musical piece created exclusively by sounds from the Evil Dead movies is one of the best things ever created and put on the internet.

7. Se7en - sloth

I did not deliberately plan out Se7en to be number 7 on my list, heh. The Sloth scene. I don't understand how anyone could NOT be affected by the Sloth scene. It's a masterful buildup of filmmaking; you're on the edge of your seat, thinking they're going after the murderer, knowing it's too early in the movie for them to catch the guy but never suspecting what exactly you're about to find. The slow buildup to get into the apartment, the juxtaposed shots of SWAT members, stairways, decrepit hallways. The puzzling air fresheners, hundreds of them, hanging from the ceiling. The shrouded body on the bed. The big reveal - IT'S A VICTIM. The horror that dawns as you take in his skin-and-bones, starved, bedsore-ridden remains. The judgmental detective leans in, whispers cruelly, and HOLY SHIT HE'S ALIVE OH MY GOD HE'S ALIVE, TWISTING AND MOVING UNNATURALLY, and for a moment he is no longer an object of pity but a creature to be feared.

6. Dawn Of The Dead (2004) - little neighbor girl in the hallway

I mentioned that I have a special terror of people being attacked when they're in especially vulnerable positions, like, oh, PEACEFULLY SLEEPING IN THEIR BEDS, didn't I? The beginning of the DotD remake is a great roller coaster ride, and the little zombie neighbor girl in the hallway really kicks it off for me. A doble-whammy of her just being there in the first place, and then the unnatural way she jumps up and goes running down the hallway after the attack.

Dawn of The Dead 2004 (The Beginning)
Uploaded by TwilightZone13. - Check out other Film & TV videos.

5. The Vanishing (American) - buried alive

I never saw the original so I can't compare the two, but that moment after Kiefer Sutherland agrees to experience everything his girlfriend did in order to find out what happened to her, that moment when he wakes up from his drugged sleep to find that he has been buried alive, OH, I can't handle the horror. As women in today's world we are raised to be especially careful, because we seem to be the preferred victim of most rapists and murderers. We are especially aware of the dangers that could be lurking in every corner of the world around us, and the fact that the seemingly innocent teacher at the gas station was a murderous fiend who kidnapped one of our own and BURIED HER ALIVE far eclipsed most anything I'd seen up to that point in my life. I saw this movie as a teen, with my mother, and I don't think I've ever looked at the world quite the same way again. The fact that Kiefer gets away and exacts revenge is cold comfort, because it doesn't in any way fix the fact that his girlfriend was BURIED ALIVE, killed in one of the most horrific manners I can imagine.

4. Ghosthouse - creepy ass little girl loves her terrifying chanting giant clown doll

I saw this movie with some friends as a teen, and though the movie itself is god awful, the little ghost girl with her scary clown doll, and the truly unnerving chant-song that accompany them, terrified us. Creepy children. Clowns. And what the hell IS it saying, exactly? "Burial? Burial?" I'm not sure we finished the movie the first time around. We just couldn't HANDLE that clown.

This video sucks simply because the person that uploaded it put stupid captions on it, but it gives a much better idea of how creepy the little girl is than the other video I found.

This video showcases the creepiness of the clown quite well, but doesn't convey the little girl's weirdness as well

3. The Exorcist - spider-crawl

Bodies moving in an unnatural fashion are just downright WRONG. It's mere seconds of a truly disturbing film, and it wasn't even included in the original cut, yet for me, it's the most disturbing part of all.

2. The Ring (American) - it's a tie between the dead faces and Samara coming out of the TV

As a whole, The Ring works as a genuinely unnerving and frightening movie. I've only seen it twice, because it terrified me so the first time. I recently watched it the second time, with my husband, after I found out he hadn't seen it yet and I felt it was an important piece of his horror movie education. It was slower than I remembered, probably because the final scene (Samara coming out of the well and then crawling from the TV into reality) is so intense that I practically shit my pants just THINKING about it. By now, everyone knows about it and if you haven't seen it, seeing it the first time is probably less scary than it was when I had NO idea what I was about to experience and it was a total shock. But it still manages to deliver a healthy dose of fear.

The other moment(s) in The Ring that I can't watch, and that haunt my nights sometimes, are the split-second reveals of the dead faces of Samara's victims. Most notably Katie in the closet. It's early in the movie, unexpected, and utterly horrifying, and it really sets the tone for the rest of the film.

1. Arachnophobia, or anything with spiders

I'm a severe arachnophobe. ANY scene with a spider in it is going to give me the willies. This is probably the only spider movie I've ever actually SEEN, and it may very well be the only one I EVER see. I saw it back when I was a teen, and my spider phobia wasn't too bad. I STILL check under my toilet seat for spiders, and always look in the cereal box before pouring myself a bowl, and I check the shower thoroughly for spiders before getting in. I even check my TOWEL to make sure there are none on it, waiting to crawl on my flesh.

yeah, I... can't even look at pictures of spiders.

So, what are yours?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Guillermo and Me

I kind of love Guillermo del Toro. I do. I like his films a lot and every little bit more I learn about the man, I love him more and more. I had no idea he had "co-wroten" a book! I'll have to pick it up.

Craig is pretty awesome too.

Check out this fantastic and funny interview.

Some of my favorite things (probably don't read these unless you've watched the interview):

"being a sick, fat human being" lol oh Guillermo!

"vampires are meant to be frightening, not some actor douchebag with big hair... that's, that's not a vampire! that, my friend, is a JONAS BROTHER!" OH LOL CRAIG

vampire peepees! LOL! (Though I have actually read one other book that went into that pretty much in depth. I'll have to compare the two books when I read this one!)

"well, they haven't excavated under the cellar under my house... I'm still a free man" <3 Guillermo, really. <3 I love that he grew up reading old vampire lore! (And have you seen pictures of his HOUSE? Seriously? HE IS SO AWESOME. I wish to be his friend and hang out with him!!)

"The fat man is a geek!" :) (Also, I love how excited Craig got when HP Lovecraft came up!)

Here's an interview about Guillermo del Toro's house.

And here is a picture of the entry to his house.

I think I will have to send him an engraved invitation to the Not House when I get it up and running. And perhaps he will return the favor and invite me to his home! Maybe we'll be best friends. I think I'll write a song about it. I'll call it "Guillermo and Me", and I'll put it on youtube and then he'll see it and realize that we are BFFs separated at birth and he'll call me up and we'll be reunited.

'cause we were meant to be... oh yeah... Guillermo and me...

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


We made a short, really. Entry for a video contest. And I feel bad even saying "WE made a movie" because really it was more like I told my friend Red about this contest and said we should make a movie, and he totally ran with it and filmed, edited, and generally made this whole thing happen in many ways. (YOU ARE AWESOME RED!) But it's the first movie project I've ever been a part of, outside of the odd high-school assignment that is, and I'm incredibly excited about it.

This was for the Midnight Syndicate Video Contest; Midnight Syndicate creates atmospheric music for haunted attractions and the like. Gothic soundtracks, if you will. I've been a fan of theirs for quite some time now, and often play their music as inspiration when I'm writing. Naturally when I saw they were doing a video contest, I was pretty excited. The rules were pretty simple; craft a spooky short silent film and set it to one of their songs.

Do you know what's even more awesome? We put this together in, basically, ONE DAY. I mean, we tossed around ideas and stuff for a while before that, but when it came to actual filming, we just got together at Red's house one day, filmed a bunch of scenes, and then he worked like a madman to edit it all into something resembling the ideas that had been tossed around and to get it submitted before the deadline. And we did it while wrangling four kids (my two and my friend Sarah's two (Sarah being one of the stars of the film)). Child wrangling was probably my largest contribution to the process (and I'm not sure I did it all that well, lol). Oh, and I produced the offspring that is the other star of the film. I like to believe I did THAT pretty well; not that you'd know it from his lack of cooperation the day of filming. (Despite his general apathy towards the ACTUAL work involved in filming scenes, he has already spoken excitedly about the next movie project we will do, lol, so I guess it wasn't as 'boring' as he made it out to be that day!)

So. Anyway. I'm excited. Thanks so much to Red, Sarah, Drake, Oksana, Xander, and Piper. Red for all the work you put into this, you did AWESOME things and it was really fun to get a little taste of 'MOVIE MAGIC'! Sarah for being the coolest creepster ever to grace a short film project anywhere. Drake for being in the movie even when you didn't want to be. And Oksana, Xander, and Piper for being awesome kids in general and for cooperating pretty well with me / us as we worked around you guys. :) I'm looking forward to future movie projects!

Here is our Midnight Syndicate video contest entry, set to their song "Crimson Door".

Friday, February 26, 2010

Vampire Wilford Brimley Meets Deer Woman

I know I said I was going to make my next post about startle-scares, so I apologize for the digression, but inspiration struck and when inspiration takes over, you have to go with it or all is lost.

A progression of facebook comments (that's how ALL my troubles begin these days, through 'a progression of facebook comments') got me to thinking about Wilford Brimley, and how awesome it would be if he were really a vampire. Then I started thinking about writing a short story about Vampire Wilford Brimley, hereafter known as Mustachica*. You see, one of the things I'd like to do with this blog is have a feature called Spookshow Sundays, where I feature short stories, art, videos, etc from up-and-comers in the horror world. (More on that in the future, whenever I get around to actually implementing it.) Mustachica (pronounced Mustache-ica, not Musta-CHICA) would make a great story for that.

'Come ON, Spooks,' I hear you thinking. 'Vampire WILFORD BRIMLEY? That's utterly ridiculous!' And it is, my friends; I don't disagree with you. But I believe it can work. Do you know WHY I believe it can work? Because of John Landis.

What the HELL does John Landis have to do with Mustachica? Well, nothing really. But he DID make the Masters of Horror episode Deer Woman. Yes, he made a lot of other awesome stuff too, but Deer Woman is what keeps me going when I feel like everything I am coming up with is pure drek, drivel, not fit for human consumption. Deer Woman keeps me going when I'm lost. Deer Woman... ok, so maybe I'm attributing a little too much to Deer Woman. But it really did give me hope.

I've mentioned before that I tend to consume a lot of my adult media (as in 'things I can't yet show to my kids', not 'porn') through spoilers these days, since I have little kids. I didn't have Showtime when the Masters of Horror series first aired. I wanted to see it but never got around to it. Periodically I would read about it and think 'yeah, I really wanted to watch those', but kept putting it off in favor of other hobbies. I did read spoilers about all the episodes on wikipedia though. And I remember reading about this Deer Woman episode (in which SPOILER a half-woman half-deer creature seduces men and kicks them to death) and thinking 'oh my god that sounds like the dumbest story EVER'.

Last year, I discovered that the Masters of Horror episodes were on Netflix Instant Play. Joy! I could watch them while I was working, on my computer! And I did. I multitasked through many of the episodes, and found many of them enjoyable. I wasn't exactly thrilled about the idea of Deer Woman when it was time for it, but in true horror fan spirit (I'll watch pretty much anything at least once), I gave it a fair shot.

Deer Woman, I'm sorry I maligned you. You were an excellent entry into the series. One of the best. You were FUNNY. You gave Brian Benben, one of my favorite actors since Dream On, a chance to shine again. You utterly charmed me.

If you haven't seen Deer Woman, I really do suggest you check it out.

And John Landis, thank you for... just... being awesome. I shouldn't have doubted you. Thank you for helping me believe in Mustachica.

I'm not saying I'm a John Landis, so please don't hate. Just that I'm inspired by him. Having people who inspire us, who we can believe in, who take these bizarre and ridiculous ideas and turn them into something great, it really helps those of us who are trying to do the same thing, keep going.

So thank you. And go watch Deer Woman! And believe in Mustachica! Like Tinkerbell, if enough people believe, perhaps he will live.

*not his real name

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Tracks Of My Fears

I said in my last post I would talk about what scares me, and since it's the middle of the day and I'm not home alone or anything I feel perfectly safe in doing so. ;)

As I mentioned before, it seems to take a lot to scare a seasoned horror veteran. Even the GOOD movies don't always get us. But everyone's got a trigger, something that freaks them out, scares the crap out of them. I'm not necessarily talking about phobias, though I have those too. Mine? Spiders and corpses. Yeah, Ol' Spooks is afraid of corpses. Funny, isn't it? The phobias have differing degrees. I would rank my spider phobia as SEVERE. I think about them almost constantly, live with a low-grade level of anxiety about encountering them, and panic uncontrollably when I DO encounter them. I can't watch movies with spiders - I did see Arachnophobia when I was 12 or 13, at a friend's sleepover; this was before my phobia was really bad, and honestly that movie may have helped kick it up a notch. I made it through that one viewing, and every moment of that film is permanently burned into my brain, coming out to terrify me at completely inopportune moments. Like, say, when I take a shower. Or pour myself a bowl of cereal. As much as I know I'd probably love the flick Eight Legged Freaks were the subject matter anything but arachnids, there is NO WAY I can watch it. A preview for it caught me by surprise at some other movie, and I screamed - loudly - and almost fled the theater. Yeah. It's ugly. Even talking about this is making my skin crawl. I've considered getting therapy, but the thought of getting over my phobia terrifies me too.

The corpse phobia is milder. It probably goes without saying that I adore Halloween. I can use faux corpses in my Halloween display, with glee even. I have no qualms about handling them (fake spiders, on the other hand? FUUUCKK NOOOO). I can go to funerals. If necessary, I can be in the same room as a dead body without experiencing too much anxiety. I just can't TOUCH a dead body. This applies to human, animal, AND insect. Dead bodies are kind of squicky anyway, for most people, but I think this one was amped up when I worked in a haunted house years back; I worked a torture scene, as a victim chained to the wall, and for some reason the folks in the haunted house thought it would give it some nice ambiance (zombiance?) if they put a real pig's head, fresh from the butcher, on the guillotine right next to me. It was so dark that I doubt any of the patrons even noticed it, but after three days of working that scene - well, Porky wasn't so 'fresh' anymore. Ew.

That's not me; I would NEVER pose naked with DEAD pigs. This is actually from a regretsy listing.

To sum up: if zombies start taking over the world, I am prepared to kick some ass. If spiders start taking over the world? I'm eating a bullet, right now.

So, where were we before I was NOT talking about phobias? Oh, right, things that scare me. It's probably not too hard to guess that the movies that get me are generally ghost-related. I'm not scared of ghosts all the time, or even most of the time. I believe in the paranormal, I've gone ghost hunting, I love it, and most of the time I feel ghosts are fairly benevolent. Sometimes though, they're not. Take The Ring, for instance. Love it or hate it, it scared the shit out of a lot of people. I was one of those people. The Ring got me but GOOD. I've only seen it once. I WOULD watch it again, but it would be one of those flicks that I watch parts of through my fingers. I have a thing about creepy kids though. When I myself was a kid, I was convinced my parents' bedroom was haunted. I had a dream one night about the Bug-Eyed Man, and it terrified me for years. The Bug-Eyed Man was actually this grossly oversized seven year old kid, and he just kind of hung around in my parents' room, lurking in the closet or under the bed. When I would walk by the door, he would leave his hiding place and rush to the doorway and just stand there, staring at me, pinning me down with his freaky bugged-out Large Marge-style eyes. The world around me would go totally silent, I could feel the air moving but I couldn't hear anything, and he would just stand there and STARE, and I could feel the malevolence rolling off him in waves. He never did anything to me, short of make me nearly crap my pants for a couple years, but man, to this day I still don't feel quite right in my parents' room, and I'm not entirely convinced that there wasn't a presence there. It was a very vivid dream for a little kid to have, and I felt that presence every time I walked past their door for about two years afterwards.

his eyes looked just. like. THIS!

So, creepy kids. Don't like 'em. Also don't like scary dead eyes. One time when I was about 11 or 12, visiting my aunt in Canada, I was sleeping alone on the third floor of her (awesome but ginormous) old house and... I had a dream. I was in the room one afternoon (in the dream) when the closet door opened and this thin old woman walked out, head down. She shuffled out the door and down the hall. I called out to her but she kept going. I followed her, down the stairs, down the hallways. It was a bright sunny day and I could see the dust motes spinning in the air as she shuffled by. I lost her somewhere on the second floor but there weren't many places she could have gone, and I ran out the front door to see if I could find her, find out who she was, what she was doing in my aunt's house. The air had that eerie silence to it again, not even the birds were making noise. As I ran out onto the porch, I saw the woman; drab and gray even in the bright sunlight, she was kneeling down in the garden, bent over the flowers. I called out, she didn't answer. I walked over to her and put my hand on her shoulder, and she turned to me. Her skin was gray too, and cold, and as we came face to face I saw that her muscles were all slack, lifeless, except for her mouth, which was curved into a hideous parody of a smile. Our eyes met and hers were cold, dead, gray, glazed. I was filled with such a sense of evil and terror that I woke up, sat bolt upright in bed, heart pounding, and refused to sleep in that room for the rest of my stay. I never once opened that closet. And to this day, those gray glazed-over eyes in movies scare the crap out of me.

The Ring kicked it up a notch with those herky-jerky movements. When Samara comes out of the TV at the end, I was terrified; the way she moved was so unnatural, so completely unnerving. When it speeds up and she bum-rushes the guy - HOLY SHIT. I think this is the crux of my issue with a good ghost story - most other scary critters can be stopped in some fashion, but ghosts? Ghosts can pretty much do whatever the fuck they want. My personal beliefs are that ghosts in real life have limited power, and that there are different types of hauntings, but I believe it is POSSIBLE for some ghosts to do whatever they want. Maybe in limited doses, but... yeah. That thought, if I let myself run with it for a while, will feel me with creepy-crawlies and leave me sleeping with the lights on.

This picture still makes me want to crap my pants. Seriously.

Running with the creepy kids theme, the beginning of the Dawn of The Dead remake - the neighbor kid who appears in their hall, all zombified and I'm-a-gonna-eat-cha? Yeah. I still sometimes check my hallway at night. Vulnerability, having someone or something in your house when you're sleeping or showering or otherwise unaware and totally vulnerable, also terrifies me. The rest of the movie, while I enjoyed it, not so much with the scary. But that one scene haunts me.

Sometimes, late at night, when I'm the last one awake and I'm in the right frame of mind, I am still convinced something is under my bed, something that is going to grab me and... I don't know what's going to happen then, it's just going to grab me and I'm going to panic and die, die of fear. This isn't an entirely unfounded fear because, you see, this happened to me once. Well, not the dying part obviously, but the being grabbed by something under my bed in the middle of the night part. I was 12, and though I don't remember the day, my mother's account is that I was behaving like a particular brat all day. So while I was in the bathroom getting ready for bed, she decided to teach me a lesson. I had a day bed, but no trundle, so it was fairly high off the ground. Mom snuck into my room, slid her ass under the bed, and waited. And waited. And waited for me to get into bed, read, turn the lights off. She waited some more, let me get good and comfortable, and when she felt the time was right... she reached out and grabbed my legs. I don't know if anything in real life has ever terrified me more than that moment, and I still sleep with the covers tucked firmly around my feet.

this is the face of evil

I've been scared by other movies... but nothing else comes to mind as a lingering, life-affecting fear, where it comes to mind unbidden in the middle of the night and makes me sleep with the lights on. Those are my big ones.

Next time, I'll talk about startle-scares and how I think they're generally a cheap plot device.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Horror Fans Get Scared Too

I've been a horror fan since youth. I do remember a time when I was a chickenshit little thing who ran with fear every time my mom tried to introduce me to anything remotely scary, but growing up with the family I did (especially around Halloween), it was inevitable that the horror bug would eventually bite. And once it did, it dug its teeth in fiercely and hasn't let go to this day (not that I want it to).

Though this isn't true for all horror fans, I myself am also a believer in the paranormal. The supernatural. As a youngster, I desperately wanted to grow up to be a parapsychologist, until I grew old enough to learn that there wasn't a lot of money in that field. (Then I decided I wanted to be a writer and film maker who would go ghost hunting in her 'spare time' - a concept which I don't tend to see much of in my current life, given the absurd amount of hobbies I have.) I believe that one day the zombies will rise up and come after us all. More than anything, though, I believe in ghosts. I am FASCINATED by ghosts, desperate to have encounters of my own.

Over the years I've met, befriended, and had discussions with a variety of horror fans, and it seems to be a universal truth that the longer you've been a fan of horror, the harder it is to scare you. We hit a point where we've seen most of what's out there, we've read just as much, and we've probably thought about it all to (pardon the pun) death. Sure, you might get a startle out of us now and again (which is NOT, to my way of thinking, the same as SCARING someone, but that's a whole blog entry on its own), but a good lingering scare? Hard to do. I don't scare easily. I go into most horror movies with glee rather than anticipated dread. I don't cower behind my hands or squeal in terror (usually, heh). I've been on real ghost-hunting expeditions to places rumored to be legitimately haunted - sometimes with permission, sometimes sneaking in in the middle of the night. I've been used as 'ghost bait' on some of these. The only thing that ever scared me on any of these was other people.

And yet, sometimes... sometimes something will grab a hold of my mind and not let go. Something will leave a lingering sense of dread that grows in me, takes a hold of my imagination (which is a formidable force in its own right), and I'm left sitting in bed with all the lights, terrified to go to sleep. It doesn't happen often, but when it does it's nearly impossible for me to shake, no matter how many times I tell myself I'm an adult and I'm safe and should just GET OVER IT ALREADY. Usually it's ghosts that do it in some fashion, and I'm sure that's because I believe they're real. If I didn't believe in them, there would be no reason for them to scare me, after all.

Last night was one of those 'sometimes' when creepy thoughts grabbed my mind and wouldn't let go. It wasn't even triggered by anything specific, it was just a bunch of things that snowballed thanks to creepy memories and my overactive imagination. I was reading one of my favorite blogs, Kindertrauma, and came across this post about the film Lake Mungo. I haven't seen Lake Mungo; I knew it was a part of Horror Fest this year but the films they've picked for past Horror Fests have done NOTHING for me, and after initially reading the synopsis a month or so ago I must admit my initial thought was "meh", and I moved on. After reading the Kindertrauma post about the movie though, my interest was piqued. I was especially intrigued by the mention of a 'horrific and iconic image' at the end.

CONFESSION TIME! I love spoilers. I'm incredibly impatient and, since I have young kids, we don't get out to movies very often. So I spend a lot of my time scouring the web for spoilers, synopses, trailers, clips of movies, and pictures. 99% of the time, when I eventually DO watch the films, I still get a huge amount of enjoyment out of them and am not sorry I spoiled myself. So, until my lifestyle is such that it allows me to go out and see as many movies as I want whenever I want to see them, I will continue to read spoilers. I understand that not everyone has the same view of spoilers as I do, and the folks at Kindertrauma were kind enough to NOT post a picture of said image for their readers. BUT I WANTED MORE.

So I went on a web hunt. And despite my excellent google skills, I did NOT find the image. I did find enough spoilers to read the context of the image and it does seem to have scared a number of people, but the end image / video itself I could not locate (still willing to view it if anyone else has better google-fu than I though!).

As I was searching and getting increasingly frustrated, my mind started wandering to other things, similar things that have scared me. Gradually I began to grow unsettled as I read more and more about hauntings and ghosts and premonitions of death. It was 2AM. Dark outside. The house was quiet. I had just returned home from a weekend road trip, from eleven hours of being on the road that day, from three days of not-enough-sleep. My computer is in the corner of our dining room, with windows in front of me and on the side / back of me. The world was dark, quiet, sleeping. My mind settled on an old terror, a memory of a story that's haunted me since I read it when I was a kid; a story about some lady who purchased a jigsaw puzzle at a thrift shop. The puzzle had no picture on the box so she didn't know what it was, and being a puzzle enthusiast she took it home and began assembling it. As she assembled it she began to grow unsettled as she realized that the puzzle was a picture of the VERY ROOM SHE WAS IN. She continued putting it together; it even showed her putting the puzzle together. The last piece she placed was the room's window - and in the puzzle, in the window there was a horrific fiend staring in the window at her! AHHHH! FREAKED MY SHIT OUT AS A KID. And to this day, I sometimes turn to windows and expect to see a hideous mangled face staring in at me, right before I DIE HORRIBLY.

Once that entered my head last night, naturally I couldn't get rid of it. Sitting next to darkened windows while you're reading creepy things and thinking about monsters standing RIGHT NEXT TO YOU, separated only by a measly pane of glass, will do wonders for your heart, let me tell you. I couldn't stop looking out the window and I really EXPECTED there to be something there. I started thinking about how ghosts could be anywhere at any time, watching you, watching me RIGHT NOW, plotting malevolent plots (generally I don't believe spirits are malevolent, but in the middle of the night when you're already letting your mind run out of control, logic does not prevail). I started remembering other movie images that scared me (the dead closet-girl in The Ring, Samara from The Ring (did I mention I found The Ring to be genuinely frightening? At least that little girl freaked my shit out!), some other story that I read about a monster in a mirror that was very scary and I can't FIND it but I can't get it out of my head even though I only read it once, other stuff I can't recall right now), and so I gave up and crawled into bed with my husband.

Once there, I still couldn't stop thinking. I haven't seen Paranormal Activity yet, but I've seen the scene in the trailer where something moves under the bedclothes while the couple is sleeping. I've seen other movies where things are in the bed with the couple that aren't supposed to be in the bed. I laid next to my husband, stiff as a board, eyes darting around the room, while he sleepily cuddled up to me and began trying to put the moves on me. "I'm scared," I told him pitifully, and he laughed and tried to comfort me by telling me the same thing he tells the kids: that he put signs outside forbidding monsters, zombies, vampires, ghosts, etc to enter the house. "I'm an adult," I tell him with a sniff. "I know those signs don't work. There could be ghosts in here RIGHT NOW." Yes, and they would LOVE it if we got down to business time, he tells me. But I just can't get past the thought of being vulnerable while something tries to get me. And being caught IN FLAGRANTE DELICTO is one of the most vulnerable states I can imagine. Try as I might, I can't push past my irrational fear. My poor husband resigns himself to the fact that ghosts mean NO BUSINESS TIME TONIGHT, and cuddles me instead. "I need to sleep with the light on," I tell him, and he says OK to that too. None of this stuff spooks him, so he doesn't understand it at all, but at least he's supportive of my fears, lol.

Eventually I fell asleep, even being able to turn the light off shortly before sleep overtook me. And it's morning, and I'm fine now, looking back at the events (or non-events, or events-in-my-head) of last night with a little bit of sheepishness, a little bit of wry humor. But last night, I was genuinely scared.

So, horror fans, what scares YOU? I'm always interested in the thoughts, concepts, and stories / films that have left people with a lingering sense of dread and unease... and if it gave you a sleepless night, more's the better. Hit me with your best scary shot! I'll share mine in my next post.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Love You, Tangina

Zelda Rubenstein, the actress who played Tangina Barrens in Poltergeist (and had a few other notable horror movie moments), passed away today. I was always a fan of hers; this news makes me sad.


That link will take you to a great horror blog; they are featuring her as one of their "women of the week". Check it out.
Related Posts with Thumbnails