Thursday, October 28, 2010

Halloween: Season of the Witch

I suppose that I should apologize for borrowing from the film, Halloween III: Season of the Witch for using part of their title for my heading; however, since that film is so universally [Censored by WW editorial staff], they may actually wish to offer us some residuals for bringing it up in the first place. In any event, I mean only to speak of the season that we are currently in, which is, of course, Halloween.

Now, being a church-going, Bible-thumping, Bible-believing kind of guy, I could easily write a very long post about several reasons why we should not want anything to do with such a date and the supposed thinning of the veil. Thankfully, this is not the forum for such posts, and personally I let this particular “holiday” pass by like water off the proverbial duck’s back. We have never really decorated our house or yard, but that wasn't because we had taken some concrete, unyielding stance or another. We just never have. My sons did go trick or treating. How else was my wife going to get her chocolate fix? Okay, I wanted some candy, too. I kind of like the whole ghosts and goblins long as there are no "real" apparitions to be seen in my house in the middle of the night. Some of you may know just how early I have to get up in the morning for my day-job; if there were some "things in the dead of night", I would definitely "bump" into them.

How about some of you folks? Are there any traditions that you enjoy, regarding this particular season? Do you decorate your yard or the inside of the house? Do you have small children or grandchildren that you dress up and escort about town, hunting for treats? The following photo is of Disney's Haunted Mansion after it has been transformed into The Nightmare Before Christmas. They do this for the holidays and not necessarily every year. Speaking of someone who has visited Disneyland in Anaheim, California quite often, it is spectacular to behold.

[caption id="attachment_3756" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Disney's Haunted Mansion"][/caption]There is one thing that I would like to do, but continue to fail at and that is hunting for horror films to watch. When I was a teenager, back when Nosferatu was a new film, I used to enjoy watching scary things (I was kidding about Nosferatu; I hope you caught that). I grew up with Friday the 13th, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Halloween, John Carpenter films, and several other movies commonly regarded as Slasher Films. However, now that I think about it, I question whether we actually enjoyed those films, or simply partook of them because they were a bit of a taboo. Perhaps it was simply the thrill of watching something that our parents were barely allowing us to view, or that we were not allowed to do, but were doing so behind their backs anyway. Maybe it was a bit like that first drink, or the day we passed our driving test and could finally drive alone or our first [Once again,Censored by WW editorial staff] .

My problem now is I don’t think I have the stomach for senseless violence. I’m not terribly interested in something so formula-driven: several teenagers get together for drinking, doing drugs and having sex (yeah, I let that one go-the Censored joke had run its course) only to be hunted down, one by one, until the last one defeats the villain and survives; at least until the sequel. I’m not interested in torture porn, either. These days I prefer to be pulled along by The Sixth Sense or White Noise or The Silence of the Lambs or something that is more mentally frightening than physically disgusting.

How about you folks? Do you enjoy scary movies during this season of the year? If so, what are your favorites? Perhaps you may even help me by pointing out some films that I should really give a chance to. I’m always ready for a good ghost story, for example. Recently I have thought about watching certain films, The Messengers or The Skeleton Key come to mind, but I just never really took the plunge. Part of the reason has to do with having no one to view these films with; my wife can’t watch anything the least bit scary and my oldest son is barely at that age now. I let him watch Silence about a year ago and he sat there quiet as that lamb that finally stopped screaming when it was over, mind fully blown. When I have watched these films, I have had to do it on a laptop in the privacy of the back bedroom, so nobody else would see what they most definitely did not wish to see.

In any event, I am open, so what have you got? I would love to hear from any and all of you on this subject.

No matter how you view Halloween, may it be a safe one.

And if you must say Candyman or Beetlejuice, please refrain from saying it no more than twice…

…and never in my presence. I like all of my ghosts on the printed page.
[caption id="attachment_3757" align="aligncenter" width="198" caption="Watch out for hitchhiking ghosts."][/caption]


  1. Don't waste your time on the Wolfman. We watched it and it started good... then it seemed like mid-way through another movie took over. And it sucked.

  2. Enjoyed this, brings back my own memories. I think we grew up in a better time.

  3. My husband and I go in for the old b&w classics. Even those made later on, Christopher Lee as Dracula.

    I decorate the house. I LOVE Halloween. It is my holiday, since I write vampire fiction.

    I've a collection of ceramic, plastic, etc. pumpkins. It's too bad we live so far out--I used to get into costume and make the place a spooky as I could.

    Glad I discovered this place from your own blog, James!

  4. Me, too! I'm glad to have helped.
    I'm afraid that I'm a big softy, and actually do not go all out until Christmas. I used to wait for my wife to go to work on Saturdays and then spend the whole day transforming the house, and having it completely done when she got home. These days we make it a family affair. We'll see how Xbox impedes this year. I can't hardly get my 12 year old off of there. In any event, the day after Thanksgiving, there I'll be, setting it all up again. I'm the saddest one in January when I have to put away all of my Christmas coffee mugs... Wait! Am I in danger of losing my "horror writer" status with all of this weepy talk? Snap! ;)
    Have a great week and weekend,