Category Archives: Lists

Horror Heroes: 5 Fun Facts You May Not Know About the Crypt Keeper

I remember quite distinctly the first time an eight-year-old version of myself, had snuck into the hallway of my childhood home upon hearing some hauntingly delightful music blaring from the television well past my bedtime. Being the nosy little fucker I am, I ninja-ed my way out my bedroom door and into our hallway where I peeked around a corner that held a slightly obstructed, yet palatable view of our living room- but most importantly here, the television set. In which I had a great view of in my little corner of secrecy. I spotted my parents snuggled up on our Roseanne-esque sofa, eyes fixed at our beastly Sony TV that sat heavily on the shag carpet where visions of thunder, lightning, an obvious haunted house, and cackling laughter filled the screen. And that’s when I caught my first glimpse of one of THEE most important staples of any ’90s kid’s childhood- The Crypt Keeper.

 

Of course, I wasn’t the greatest sneakster, so I was spotted pretty quickly during the first few minutes of the program. Although, much to my delight and having the coolest dad ever, he invited me to join in to watch alongside and thus begun a Saturday night ritual of tits, gore, and the most awfully awesome puns from the Crypt Keeper that I repeated to friends the following Monday before the school bell rang. Parenting at it’s finest, am I right?! I guess I was pretty lucky to have the sort of father who had no shame in lying to my mother saying he was taking me to the movies to see Lady and the Tramp when what he really meant to say was he was taking his ten-year-old daughter to the cinema to watch The Exorcist III, (and yes, I loved every second of being scared shitless from the articulate Gemini Killer.) Anyway, twenty some odd years later and episodes via Tales From the Crypt remains a beloved staple in my rotation slot, as I’m sure with many of you boils and ghouls as well. On that note, I figured I’d tip my hat to the putrid host with the most and drop a few HAXILERATING fun facts about the gangly little puppet we all fell in love with his first appearance back in 1989.

 

5. Jeepers Keeper, Where’d You Get Those Eyes?

chucky

Yep, if you ever thought to yourself, “Hey self, ole’ Crypty boy’s eyes look a tad familiar,” then you are right about that young padawan.  Infamous creature designer Kevin Yagher used a clear pair of his previous creation’s baby blues’ Chucky, as part of the design for the animatronic Crypt Keeper. Also, much like with the little Lake Shore Strangler, it also took a skilled team of six people to operate the Keeper’s animatronics.

 

5. The Crypt Keeper Actually Has an Origins Story

lower berth

In case it has been some time since you’ve revisited the series or perhaps missed this one entirely, season two intentionally gave us a surprise origin story of our favorite undead master of bad puns and shock tales. Episode 14 appropriately titled Lower Berth brings us to Feeley’s Fantastic Fairway of Freaks, where we meet a rather sensitive two-headed mutant corpse named Enoch who has a boner for an ancient mummy named Myrna. Enoch escapes the freak show and the hands of his abusive owner with Myrna and they have an ummm, interesting night in a dank cave before they are discovered a year later and taken back to the carnival prison. That is, however, not before a hellish offspring is birthed by Myrna- the Crypt Keeper. And he’s totally kind of cute! In the post discussion of the story with the Keeper, he states his parents are still at the carnival today, 80 years later. So, I suppose that makes the Keeper 80 years old at the time of the tale.

 

3. There Are Two Versions Out There Of Each Episode

crpt keeper director

Robert Zemeckis and fellow producers knew they had syndication gold on their hands, so they wanted to plan ahead for Tales to maybe be eventually broadcast on other stations that weren’t so shall we say, lenient when it comes to sex, language, and gore. and that’s exactly what happened in the Summer of 1994 over at FOX as they picked up the series as part of their late-night programming. The episodes were re-edited with alternate scenes that cut out all the naughty fun stuff, and actors were instructed to loop those hilarious dubs of non-foul language into scenes while shooting. Fuckin’ became friggin’ and so on. It was nice for those who didn’t have a subscription to HBO or if you some serious uptight parents that allowed this version to be seen. There’s always a silver lining.

 

2. The Series Got Reworked As a Game Show

The 90’s were the prime era for kids and weirdly fun game shows. With gems like Legends of the Hidden Temple and Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?, why not base a kid-friendly game show on a series known for tits and blood?! Although it only lasted one season, Secrets of the Crypt Keeper’s Haunted House came to Universal Orlando and syndicated into CBS Saturday mornings in 1996 featuring John Kassir and his puppet alter ego. Two teams with team names of “scary creatures” of a pair of kiddies competed for the glorious and coveted prize of a brand new Apple computer by answering questions from a giant floating head and successfully completing obstacles such as Fireball Alley and The Swamp From Hell. All while CK is taunting them in the process, because hey, that’s what he does right? Even with just one season under their belt, the program did somehow get nominated for a Daytime Emmy in the Outstanding Game Show category. Of course, that win went to The Price is Right but it’s kind of cool it got some recognition!

 

1. The Crypt Keeper Released a Christmas Album

Tales From the Crypt Christmas

Oh yes, we’re decking the halls with parts of Charlie with this pun-tastic holiday album featuring the Crypt Keeper! Released in 1994 by Warner Bros., the horror holiday affair with the late night ghoul of fright including such national treasure tracks as “We Wish You’d Bury The Missus”, “Twelve Days of Cryptmas”, and the all-important rap song featuring the horror icon! I mean, Freddy had the Fat Boys and Maniac Cop got into the rap game. It only seems appropriate for the king of wordplay to hop on that bandwagon and drop some sick rhymes too!

Classic Commercials: Discontinued Cereals That You May Have Forgot Actually Existed

If there be only one other thing that you associated school-less Saturday mornings’ with per our youth other than the glorious array of animated programming, it’s the sugary pellets drowned in 2% sitting on our metal character TV trays promptly sat in front of a beastly television box. Because let’s face facts, chances are you were up way earlier than everyone else in order to call all the dibs on either FOX KIDS or CBS Saturday Mornings, and the ritual wasn’t complete without the breakfast of champions. It was quick, easy, and satisfying- especially in regard to a fresh unopened box that held a crappy piece of sugary-coated plastic within. And who cares. It was yours, and you got to that toy first. That was the start of a perfect Saturday.

 

10 Discontinued Cereals' That You May Have Forgot Actually Existed

 

Anyway, through our youth and well into adulthood we’ve seen a shit-ton of limited edition and themed cereal associated with film and TV come and then disappear as fast as they came. Maybe you remember some of these, and maybe you had no clue these suckers actually existed. In any regard, let’s travel down slightly-soggy memory lane and take a look at a few retro kinds of cereal from our childhood!

 

 10. Mr. T

If you’ve never seen Pee Wee’s Big Adventure (and just what is wrong with you) then you might not even know about the infamous Mr. T cereal that debuted back in 1984. Developed by Quaker Oats, it sort of had a taste reminiscent of Cap’n Crunch. Also, I pity the fool that still doesn’t have their exclusive Mr. T stickers that came with a fresh box.

 

9. C-3PO’s

The force was totally located in your bowl with 1984’s Kelloggs cash-grab at the Star Wars franchise. I never had this one myself, but if you remember Alpha-Bits at all, many have said the Droid centered cereal tasted much like it. C-3PO’s usually carried some great prizes inside like masks from the films and plastic Rebel Rockets. However, I believe many were most stoked about the send away offers for the coveted Kenner action figures it offered.

 

8. Ghostbusters 

Who could forget the all-important Ghostbusters cereal, and even more so, the commercial that advertised an opportunity to visit the Ghostbusters’ headquarters and meet one in person!  Complete with marshmallow ghosts, fruity O’s, and glow in the dark Slimer marshmallows added later, the Ralston brand actually went through four different looks for the cereal: Two for each film, and two for the animated series one in which featuring Slimer. Whichever one you remember, it was a damn good cereal that turned your milk an excellent green. Speaking of excellence…

 

7. Bill and Ted

Well, clearly one of the most “awesome breakfast adventures” you’ll ever have is with the righteous Bill and Ted! Another Ralston creation, Bill and Ted’s Adventure cereal was a cinnamon-based flavored cereal with musical note marshmallows. If you remember this sugary gem, you might remember the box came with postcards depicting the pair’s trips through time. However, if you were really lucky, you snagged the cassette holder promotion that was encased on the outside of the box in celophane wrap. Now that, was a prize worthy of getting up at the ass-crack of dawn to beat your siblings to the pantry.

 

6. E.T.

Now as much as this little asshole alien scared the bejesus out of me when I was a youngling, that damn peanut butter and chocolate E and T shaped cereal were sure as shit delightful. Introduced in 1984 by General Mills, rumor has it the flavor choice of the cereal was based off ET’s fondness for Reeses Pieces as depicted in the movie. In any regard, if you’ve never had a taste of this retro treasure, just pick up a box of Reeses cereal and pretend to be munching like a kid again.

 

5. Cabbage Patch Kids 

Most likely the most healthy on this list is the Cabbage Patch Kids themed cereal brought to us by, who else, but Ralston in 1985. The promotional ads aimed at parents, in particular, boasting about how little sugar was actually in a serving- 3 grams according to a memorabilia site. Which may have attributed to that kind of stale taste, which is how I remember it. Also, the creepy as fuck fat smiling shaped faces that the breakfast consisted of. I only remember this due to the chances of winning an exclusive Cabbage Patch doll, which I didn’t. All that bland tasting, kind of wanting to be KIX but not quite cereal that I had to consume…. Blah.

 

4. Urkel-O’s

Urkel-ize with 1992 Urkel-O’s! Laura Winslow will be your pet in no time by just shoving this crap in her face. Ralston’s strawberry and banana flavored breakfast for fans of extremely high-waisted pant wearing nerds everywhere rolled this one out in 1991. Several versions of this cereal appeared in stores, however the most memorable featured Urkel in a red, white and blue Uncle Sam get-up beating a marching band bass drum with “Urkel For President” slammed on the front. This box, in particular, contained an “Urkel For President” campaign button and an entry form to win a trip to Washington D.C. Which was a way better way to sell the fruity O’s rather than the initial slogan, “a fun, circle-shaped product”.

 

3. Batman 

Listen, Batman was THEE jam when Michael Keaton and Tim Burton resurrected the caped crusader, so of course, a themed cereal HAD to follow.  The bat-shaped cereal had a honey-nut flavor to it and you not only bought this sucker because, duh, BATMAN, but because of the Batman Bank that was offered as a premium plastic shrink-wrapped to the box.

 

2. Addams Family

1991 was Addams Family madness and were even invading your morning breakfast ritual thanks to Ralston. I don’t remember the cereal being anything great but the flashlights promptly displayed in front of the box rather than inside in the form of members of the Addams clan reeled us in. I still have my Cousin ITT blinker, and it remains a treasured childhood relic with a slight scent of 20-year old sugar dust.

 

1. Gremlins

I couldn’t tell you if this cereal was ca-ca or yum-yum, but as a huge fan of the film, I had to include the cereal featuring the adorable Gizmo introduced by Ralston in 1984 to coincide with the film’s release. And that’s about as long as the cereal lasted, as it seemed to have disappeared faster than a gremster being hosed down with H2O. Exclusive stickers were packaged inside this bad-boy along with an offer of a cute little Gizmo plush for $9.95 plus two proofs of purchase. Might I add, if you own the cereal premium relic, I’m feeling all the peanut butter and jelly towards you at this moment.

 

 

 

 

 

Honor the “Rowdy One” on His Birthday With the Best of Piper’s Pit

It’s time to celebrate the legend who smugly proclaimed he was the man who “made Hulk Hogan lose all his hair.”

The WWE Attitude era existed long before it’s rebranding launch in 1997 thanks to a Canadian with a prideful Scottish heritage,”Rowdy” Roddy Piper. As you know as well as I, Hot Rod imprinted his legacy in the sport with not just his wrestling skills, but also with a mouth that slams Jimmy Hart’s famous shit-talking jaws into the turnbuckle corner of shame.

Honor the "Rowdy One" on His Birthday With the Best of Piper's Pit

And with those quick-witted puns and illustrious smack-talk, arose one of the greatest segments from the glory days of the WWF- Piper’s Pit. Those Royal Stewart Plaid thin walls that surrounded a shrine dedicated to an (at the time heel) feisty Piper and a single chair, two if Roddy was feeling generous for his guest, became a highlighted segment for the WWE/WWF program through its 1984-1987 run; (with occasional appearances until his death in 2015). Realistically speaking, any one person who makes it their duty to destroy another’s ego while humiliating the ever-loving shit out of them, would be seen as well, a complete douchebag. But, this was Roddy Piper. And somehow, we loved him for it. Even at the height of his heel days in the WWF, Piper with his hilarious insults hurled at both competitors and comrades alike, had us hanging onto his every word. So, of course, we all watched with anticipation once the spotlight centered on the arched entranceway of the Pit of the Piper as we desperately waited to see what pot of fuckery he was going to stew up for the evening’s shenanigans. It was quite a special thing that with much sorrow, we will never see once again.

The king of witty sarcasm and trash-talk in and out of the ring would have celebrated his 64th birthday this 17th day of April. So let’s break out the bagpipes and shove a banana down someone’s throat in honor of the legend as we look back at in no particular order, the very best of Piper’s Pit.

 

Frank Williams (04-14-1984)

Just when they think they got the answers, I change the questions!

What a sport that Frankie is, eh? Throughout WWE programming, we would see superstars pit against basically unknown or “jobber” wrestlers as filler matches. Frankie Williams was one of those guys, and Piper made a memorable example out of the poor schmuck. Piper jabbers on about how worthless Williams is in the sport and then just kicks the shit out of the guy. While we mostly never remember these jobber wrestlers whose purpose is just that- to lose to the popular roster, we’ll always remember Frankie the Jobber for his stint on Piper’s Pit, as this was the first brawl in the segment. From there on in, all bets were off when you entered Roddy’s house and you better be prepared for a fight to break loose.

 

 

Andre the Giant (03-17-1984)

You do not throw rocks at a man who has got a machine gun!

Only Roddy would have the kind of balls to tell Andre what a teenie-weeny brain he has. Even in the face of a legendary giant who basically manhandles him like a ragdoll towards the end of the segment, Piper salvages his man-pride with another memorable one-liner making this entry too hilarious to ever forget.

 

Brother Love and Morton Downey Jr. (04-02-1989)

Was there ever a time where Brother Love didn’t look like a mullet-loving lobster in heat?

Piper had been long gone from the arena to focus on his acting career however, he made a glorious return center stage for Wrestlemania V and another stint for Piper’s Pit. He also spread the word around to anyone else slightly even entertaining the idea that anyone other than the Rowdy One could host Piper’s Pit. After embarrassing Brother Love forcing him to retreat back to the locker rooms, Piper set his sights on chain-smoking celebrity Morton Downey Jr. Who just couldn’t manage to play nice, and further antagonize Piper with his cigarette smoke. Common knowledge: If you purposely try and fuck with Roddy, you’re gonna have a bad time, mmk?

 

 

Hulk Hogan, Andre, and Bobby Heenan (02-07-1987)

Man did Piper know how to sell a story or what?!

The use of Piper’s Pit set the stage for one of the greatest matches and torch passes in Wrestlemania history between the Immortal One and The Giant. Andre debuted his shocking heel turn and alliance with Bobby “The Brain” Heenan during the confrontation with Hogan on Piper’s Pit. Which in turn, lead to Hogan begging and pleading with his old friend as to why on Earth he would sink so low as to garner the services of a “weasel”. Andre’s response? Ripping the shirt and chain crucifix clean off Hogan’s backside adding injury to insult. Piper may have let his guests do most of the talking in this edition, but I gotta give credit to the guy for planting the seeds to one of the most memorable matches in Wrestling history. So, hor historical purposes, this had to be included.

 

 

Cyndi Lauper and Captain Lou Albano (06-16-1984)

Time after time, this remains a goddamn classic.

The infamous Rock ‘N’ Wrestling Connection all began with the introduction of pop sensation Cyndi Lauper and thus was born a glorious matrimony of wrestling and music. Lauper appeared on Piper’s Pit quite a few times throughout her stint at the WWF, but this segment in particular where she gets super pissed at her buddy Lou and attacks Piper after stirring up some drama remains an essential part of the Roddy-Lauper feud.

 

 

 “Stone Cold” Steve Austin (04-03-05)

The first time since Wrestlemania V, Piper’s Pit was back to kick some rattlesnake ass with special guest Steve Austin. The two biggest shit-talkers in WWE history were about to come face to face to what basically seemed like, a dick-measuring contest. They slap each other a little, exchange a few insults until they’re rudly interrupted and we get a full-dose of a proper Piper’s Pit. Also, gotta love how Roddy questions the crowd like they’re dingbats with that stupid chant. Almost 20 years after the first Pit segment, some things still haven’t changed.

 

 

Mr. T (03-17-1985)

The first Wrestlemania should have just been billed, “Starring Roddy Piper and supporting cast Hogan and Mr. T.”

The thing that made this Pit so great, was that Piper and T genuinely HATED each other. The real-life heat and mutual disdain the pair had for one another made for a great pre-game to the road to the very first Wrestlemania event. The little jabs Piper takes at the A-Team star with his remarks about ex-lax, the Mohawk wig, and Piper showing off his artistic skills make for one of the most memorable, and hilarious entries in the Pit roster.

 

 

Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka (06-26-1984)

One coconut… Two coconuts… Four coconuts… and history made.

Listen, we all knew this was an obvious choice to be made here and considering the now known Snuka’s very disturbing past, I’m glad Piper cracked his dome with them coconuts and rammed bananas down his throat. Roddy just demoralizes the shit out of the then-popular superstar in a such a way that has never been matched in all the years of the segment. Years later, Piper told the Wrestling Hut that he smacked him so hard with the tree fruit that Snuka’s eyes legit rolled back and he had thought he killed the guy. The coconut incident has become Wrestling lore at its finest, still fondly remembered and spoken of ’till this day. That just don’t make them like this anymore.

And try your damnedest future athletes, but there will never be a legend like Roddy Piper in the squared circle again. Happy Birthday Roddy wherever you are but if I were to guess, you’re probably slapping around the Warrior and Heenan in the afterlife.

Image result for roddy piper slap gif

 

 

The Office, Horror Digs Deeper than John Krasinski

So John Kransinki’s A Quiet Place raked in over $50 million in its initial weekend, further solidifying the horror revolution that we’ve enjoyed for more than two years. Kransinski was so effective as a father doing all he could to protect his children and pregnant wife, that it occurred to me that Jim Halpert was not the only alumnus of The Office to make a dent in the world of horror.

Here are just a few who’ve also made a lasting impression.

RAINN WILSON

“Question.” No one was as painfully and rudely inappropriate as Dwight K. Schrute, nor could any inhabitant of the Dunder Mifflin branch irritate Michael Scott quite like our favorite beet farmer. Well, maybe Andy. That said, the fact that the Assistant to the Regional Manager’s queries never came to an end, it was altogether fitting that what made Wilson’s appearance in House of 1000 Corpses so memorable (and ultimately sealed his doom), was that his curiosity could not be quenched.

KATHY BATES

She rode in as Jo Bennett,  a no-nonsense southern belle, which wasn’t exactly in keeping with the shenanigans of Scranton, but American Horror Story aside, we’ll never have the capability to see Bates and not think about Annie Wilkes. Don’t get us wrong, Bates’ brilliance allows her to fully embody any role she chooses, but her turn as Paul Sheldon’s biggest fan was, well, a sledgehammer.

LESLIE DAVID BAKER

Let’s face it, Stanley’s monotone aggression and disdainful glances were part of his charm, but every day cannot be pretzel day. At first glance, about the best we could do was note that Baker appeared in an episode of Key & Peele. As we all know, Jordan Peele’s Get Out provided us with the most important horror film since George A. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead (1968), but this isn’t six degrees of Kevin Bacon, so instead, let’s turn to Dwight’s display with the CPR mannequins, because no one was more terrified of that Lecter moment than Stanley.

CRAIG ROBINSON

Big man admitted that he’d be upset if he didn’t at least get a bite of the Milky Way in This is the End, but no one who’s seen Tragedy Girls can say that they A) didn’t absolutely adore the Brianna Hildebrand and Alexandra Shipp-helmed hit, or B) elicit a squeal upon seeing Robinson on-screen pumping iron and rallying the community.

JENNA FISCHER

Pam’s relationship with Jim felt so real that it has become the goal of everyone who desires to live the dream. The foundation of that love was achieved whilst Fischer sat at her desk taking calls and conspiring with Halpert to mess with Dwight, so it’s rather perfect that Fischer rocked a phone headset as a bunch of creepy crawlers entered the equation in Slither. And don’t call her Pammie.

giphy

TIMOTHY OLYPHANT

Brief though his appearance as Danny Cordray was, Olyphant is part of The Office universe, and as such, we can look past David, the heroic cop in Romero’s The Crazies (2011), and instead revel in his crazy stance that Ewoks blew in Scream 2.

IDRIS ELBA

Charles Miner couldn’t determine what would motivate The Office’s workforce, but for our purposes here, let’s look past his appearance as Roland in Stephen King’s The Dark Tower, and instead take pride in the fact that Elba appeared in the Prom Night (2008) remake, as well 28 Weeks Later. And if we could go back to Fischer for a moment, “how do you confuse 28 Days with 28 Days Later?”

STEVE CARELL

In case you’d forgotten.

[Video] Retro Wrestling’s 10 Greatest Wrestlemania Moments!

With Wrestlemania 34 looming over our heads like Shawn Michaels making that spectacular overhead entrance in Wrestlemania XII, I obviously wanted to take advantage here and dive into retro wrestling’s greatest Wrestlemania moments from years’ past!

Retro Wrestling's 10 Greatest Wrestlemania Moments!

If you’re a fan, (and hey who wasn’t in the 80’s and 90’s), you can probably remember the first time you sat and watched the PayPer View spectacle that was (is), Wrestlemania. Whether you were lucky enough to be alive for the first or the twentieth, it stands as a sort of rite of passage for any wrestling fan to sit and enjoy the most important wrestling event of the year at least once at the time of airing. Bonus if you ever got to see the prestigious event loaded with neon spandex live in person! I myself never got to witness any major PayPer View events, BUT I was there when Earthquake performed animal murder (or at least my 9-year-old-self thought at the time) by cannon-balling his very large ass onto Jake “The Snake” Roberts’ bag that held the beloved Damian. And yes, the answer is I cried like a little bitch.

Anyway beyond traumatic memories of dead pythons, be it that it is Wrestlemania weekend, I felt now would be a good time to look back on some of the greatest moments from the event throughout our childhood years. These moments shook us to our core, made us feel all the damn things, and have etched their iconic imprints onto the legacy that is, the glorious Wrestlemania. Here’s what I think is, in my humble opinion of course, the ten greatest moments in retro Wrestlemania history!

 

10. The Mega-Powers Explode!

Wrestlemania V

Retro Wrestling's 10 Greatest Wrestlemania Moments!

The Madness and the Hulkster had a lot of back and forth throughout their wrestling careers. One minute they were bitter enemies, the next absolute butt-buddies. It was just a vicious cycle of fighting, followed by forgiveness and we ate it up every time. However, after the duo formed the ever-so-epic Mega Powers force and then had another falling out over a misunderstanding with Miss Elizabeth, we got the mighty conclusion of the pair’s quarrel that began over a woman and a jealous fit, at Wrestlemania V. This match, in particular, is everything I loved about retro wrestling. Two of the greatest icons, with a totally believable story behind it, raging war at Wrestlemania. Doesn’t get much better than that folks.

 

 

9. The Backlot Brawl

Wrestlemania XII

piper vs goldust

This match of all damn rages is not only memorable as it is, kind of hilarious. Listen, no one talks the kind of trash like Mr. Ass-Kicking Bubblegum himself, Roddy Piper. And when the weirdo Goldust (Dustin Rhodes) began sexually taunting the Hot Rod, our boy in plaid wasn’t having any of that shit. Thus bringing the Backlot Brawl to Wrestlemania VII so the pair could settle the score like REAL MEN. I feel like that fight scene in They Live was good practice for this match. However, Piper punched the Dust of Gold so hard, he ended up breaking his hand. And he kept going like nothing happened. Talk about commitment to the match!

 

 

8. Lovers Reunited

Wrestlemania VII

Savage and Elizabeth

I certainly am not taking anything away from the pretty awesome career ending match between Randy Savage and The Ultimate Warrior at the seventh installment of Wrestlemania. However, no one can deny this was the most memorable moment resulting from it. Elizabeth and Randy have been like peas and carrots throughout (almost) Savage’s career in the WWF to date here. So to watch the demise of Scary Sherri and the rise once again of what seemed to be, a stronger Elizabeth fall into the arms of the madness once more, was quite touching indeed.

 

 

7. Icon VS Icon

Wrestlemania XVIII

rock-vs-hogan

Before Dwayne Johnson was fighting off the jungle in Jumanji, The Rock was the sport’s biggest star and athlete during the Attitude Era at the WWE. So when we got to witness one generation’s wrestling icon square off against another, it was pretty much the coolest thing ever, (if you smell what the Patti is cookin’ over here). I know. Terrible joke. But I felt this was a proper way to pass the torch, so to speak, from Hogan to The Rock ushering in a new icon as the face for the industry. And it was pretty cool of Hogan to do that for him.

 

 

6. The Rattlesnake Takes On The Bull

Wrestlemania XVII

ausin-rock-chair

One year prior to The Rock taking on the Hulkster at Wrestlemania, he faced one of his toughest challenges to date with “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. These two phenoms WERE the top contenders during the attitude era, and have etched a legacy inside the ring worthy of standing alongside the greats before them. For the pair of fan favorites that ushered in a slew of unforgettable one-liners and ass-kicking finishing moves to finally face-off at the Superbowl events of wrestling, was truly a moment not to be forgotten anytime soon.. or ever for that matter.

 

5. The Ladder Oozes Machismo

Wrestlemania X

razor-ramon-shawn-michaels

Never before had we seen a goddamn Ladder Match! And not since then, has one matched up to the power and glory as displayed between Shawn Michaels and Razor Ramon during the tenth Wrestlemania. Both athletes are some of the most exceptional executioners in the business, and the tense back and forth for the Intercontinental championship is definitely one of the best of all time.

 

 

4. Nothing But Hart and Gorey Glory

Wrestlemania XIII

bretaustin

Single-handedly, the role-reversal moment in history happened at Wrestlemania 13 during the match between Austin and the “Excellence of Execution” himself, “The Hitman” Bret Hart. And I don’t even think it was something that was meant to happen! Which it made it that much better. The intestinal fortitude of Austin’s character during the match gained a lot of favor with the crowd, which in turn, kind of pissed off Hart. Marking the beginning of Bret Hart’s lack of faith in the industry and heel turn, which he talks in depth about in his documentary Wrestling With Shadows.

 

 

3. The Ultimate Challenge

Wrestlemania VI

Wrestlemania-6-hulk-hogan-ultimate-warrior_2069676

Much like earlier in this article with The Rock, Hogan set the stage to make another athlete an iconic superstar at Wrestlemania 6. While The Warrior’s (rest his soul) career didn’t have the longevity as Dwayne Johnson’s has, he’s no less recognizable as The Warrior has his own spot in infamous WWE history. In any regard, say what you want about the Hulkster, but he’s always been a team player when it comes to his fellow competitors. As with this explosive match in 1989, Hogan accepted defeat with dignity and a new champion was born in the ring.

 

 

2. The Savage Steamboat Ride of Awesomeness

Wrestlemania III

savage and steamboat

Many consider the brawl between Macho Man and The Dragon at Wrestlemania III, to be one of the greatest of all time. And goddamn if I don’t agree with said people. Here we have two highly technical athletes who make this match look like a fuckin’ ballet of the ring. Everything about it is perfection and should be studied by any one person looking to make a career in the sport. Or hell, just for the fun of it because it’s just that good. The brawl wasn’t even the main event, but it certainly stole the show. Mostly due to Savage’s role in the process of tediously planning every single move in the match, as Ricky Steamboat told Wrestling Observer Radio.

“It got to the point to where I would turn page after page after page in my notebook and then at about the fourth page, I’d say, ‘Okay this is step 112. I’m going to do this, this, and this. Tell me the rest of the match.’ And he would go through and tell me the rest of the match. And then he would get his book out and he would flip through same pages and he would go ‘Okay I’m on step number 86, and I’m going to be doing this, this, and this, tell me the rest of the match.”

 

 

1. The Giant Slam Heard Around The World

Wrestlemania III

hogan and andre

The only thing that can top the Steamboat/Savage interlocking dance of athletic ability, is this moment right here. The moment that forever etched Hogan as the true immortal and a man of real power and strength. It was heavily rumored at the time Hogan would try and slam the mighty Andre, but no one actually believed he could bodyslam the seven-foot-plus, 500-pound legend in the ring. That being said, the top two spots here confirm what I’ve always believed: that Wrestlemania III just might be, the greatest WWE ticket to date. It truly was a magical time for the sport, and when Andre humbly ended his undefeated 15-year streak at the company to the Hulkster, it made us really want to take those vitamins and say our prayers to no end.

What’s your favorite Wrestlemania moment?! Let’s discuss and Happy Wrestlemania Weekend!

“Heathers”Still Very 30 Years Later! Here’s 9 Quotes From the Film We All Love to Use

I’m pretty much already going to denounce you as a friend (or future friend for that matter) if you can’t get down on some Heathers. The black comedy that first premiered this day, March 31st, 1988 has not only stood the test of cinematic time but remains a significant piece of cultural bliss for those of us that grew up on the tale of bitches and corn nuts. The movie dares to expose the very real fucked up lives of your average suburbian high school with the dark corners of fads, cliques, and social status in such a way that instead of looking it as standard entertainment, we take it as chicken soup for the soul. In the ’70s, teenage girls had “Are You There God, It’s Me Margaret.” In the ’80s, we got fucked gently with a chainsaw by Heathers.

Just as with morals on how NOT to be a shitty human came with the film, so did an abundance of quotes and one-liners that even to this day, we still use without hesitation. Now 30 years later, we’re still responding to that dumb-ass question with. “Did you have a brain tumor for breakfast?” and if that hasn’t gotten old as shit by now, chances are it never will. And to that, I say, GOOD. Real life sucks losers dry. So yeah lets motor, let’s look at the most memorable quotes from the film that ages like fine wine on its 30th birthday!

 

9. “The Extreme Always Seems To Make An Impression” 

Ain’t that the truth JD! The squeaky wheel gets the grease… or something like that. Maybe not to JD’s extreme, but it seemed to ward off bumbling senior assholes Kurt and Ram, as this quote refers to the incident between the trio earlier that day in the cafeteria. Not only a suitable lesson to learn but a proper way to address your outrageous behavior. Kinda like explaining to your ex after catching them cheating why you burned every pair of pants they own.

 

8. “How Very”

"Heathers"Still Very 30 Years Later! Here's 9 Quotes From the Film We All Love to Use

One of the easiest (and snarkiest) quotes to insert into any daily conversation. This is also one of my favorite gifs to use and by fucks, I use it any chance I get.

 

7. “Greetings and Salutations”

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If you’re not introducing yourself using JD’s signature line, you’ve been doing it wrong all these years. Also, gotta love that Jack Nicholson vibe early Slater gives off throughout this whole movie.

 

6. “Lick It Up, Baby! Lick. It. Up.”

"Heathers" Still Very 30 Years Later! Here's 9 Quotes From the Film We All Love to Use

In other words, go fuck yourself bitch. Just a less vulgar way of telling someone to kiss your ass but nonetheless just as effective. And satisfying if I don’t say so myself.

 

5. “You Wanna Fuck With the Eagles, You Gotta Learn To Fly”

I don’t even fully understand this to this very day. However, I take it as when you aim for those high aspirations, go big or go home. Just another awesomely memorable, yet odd quote from the film you may hear every now and again.

 

4. “Veronica, Why Are You Pulling My Dick?”

"Heathers" Still Very 30 Years Later! Here's 9 Quotes From the Film We All Love to Use

The classiest way to say, “why are you messing with me?” never goes out of style. Case in point, the best moment for Heather Duke’s character in the whole film. Our little Eskimo is all grown up!

 

3. “Did You Have A Brain Tumor For Breakfast?”

Don’t ask stupid questions you already know the answer to.

2. “What’s Your Damage Heather?!”

"Heathers"Still Very 30 Years Later! Here's 9 Quotes From the Film We All Love to Use

I’m fairly certain any humanoid who has ever seen this film, has uttered this line at least once either in fun, or to sincerely ask someone who shit in their Cheerios that morning. A true classic to the end.

 

1. “Fuck Me Gently With A Chainsaw”

PSA: Although both witty and funny, you should never fuck anyone with a chainsaw. Unless perhaps your Leatherface getting off in TCM2, and if that’s your thing, then no judgments here. Anywho, of course, this quote tops them all. Especially when you add in that Mother Teresa line.

 

 

5 Made For TV Movies That Traumatized the Hell Out of Us

Sometimes, venturing out to your local video rental shop wasn’t required to find the most psychologically fucked up film for your Saturday viewing pleasures. Every once in a while, Lifetime, or whatever station the “movie-of-the-week” aired on, would throw you for a loop with one of those based-on-a-true-story flicks that just scarred the ever-loving hell out of you. All for free-ninety-free! Well, to us moochy kids not paying the cable bill anyway. When I think back on nostalgic made for TV films,  without fail these five movies are always the ones that first come to mind. Mostly due to the really screwed up scenes entailed within that tend to stick with you, ensuring you never forget the first time you watched poor Jo from The Facts of Life get horrifically stabbed and mangled at the hands of Pet Semetary‘s Louis Creed.

Talk about traumatizing for not just a kid, but anyone with an even little bit of heart. So without further adieu, here are the five made-for-tv movies that set the bar high in the “goddamn this is disturbing” category.

5. “No One Would Tell” (1996)

5 Made For TV Movies That Traumatized the Hell Out of Us

Based on the real-life incident between 14-year-old Amy Carnevale her murderer, 16-year-old Jamie Fuller, NBC’s No One Would Tell took that loveable Kevin Arnold and made us hate him with every bone in our fibers in 1996.

Stacy (Candace Cameron) and Bobby (Fred Savage) seem like such a cute couple. But hey, it’s movie of the week and that can’t be the end of it. Bobby is an insanely jealous son-of-a-bitch who is extremely abusive to poor Stacy; leaving her with mental and physical bruises. She takes it with her head down for some time, however, when she breaks off the relationship, things turn deadly.

Personally, and while this is a movie based on true events, I feel like the most traumatizing aspect of this is seeing these family-friendly stars from The Wonder Years and Full House, in this sort of role. I mean, KEVIN KILLED DJ! Never, have I ever looked at The Wonder Years the same again without snarling a tad at Kevin.

No One Would Tell

4. What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1991)

5 Made For TV Movies That Traumatized the Hell Out of Us

Before we even dive into this bag of dicks, let me make very clear this is in no way superior to the original with Miss Bette Davis and Joan Crawford. Nowhere close. But, Lynn Redgrave does give a mighty unsettling performance as Baby Jane. Enough so to scare the living shit out of me when I was a kid. So credit where it’s due.

The plot remains the same as the 1962 adaptation but is set in the 90s for a more modern take on the novel by Henry Farrell. As stated of course, this rehash doesn’t compare to the masterpiece of the original, but if you look at it as a mere retelling of a classic, then its a rather enjoyable flick. And the late Redgrave’s portrayal of the insanity-induced Jane is creepy on all the levels. Which is why I made the decision to include it on this list. Her performance alone gave me undeniable skeevies.

3. The Burning Bed (1984)

5 Made For TV Movies That Traumatized the Hell Out of Us

Oh man, here we go. The Burning Bed from 1984 tells the horrific tale of fed-up battered housewife, Francine Hughes. Played by Charlie’s Angels sweetheart Farrah Fawcett, the film that debuted on NBC recounts the relationship between Francine and her scumbag husband of 13 years, James “Mickey” Hughes. The amount of physical and mental abuse at the hands of this man (and I use that term rather loosely) is beyond my comprehension. And it only makes me question why she didn’t do what she did a hell of a lot sooner.

On March 9th, 1977 Francine grabbed her kids and asked them to wait in the car in the middle of the night while her drunk as a skunk husband was passed out on their bed. She then grabbed some gasoline, poured it over the bed with the wife-beater in it, and set it aflame. Killing her abuser and freeing herself once and for all. Well, in the physical sense anyway.

Now, I normally wouldn’t condone such an action. But to understand, you’d have to see for yourself the viciousness this poor woman went through. It was bad enough for even the viewers of the film to become rather disturbed by such a thought. And even now in the present, still manages to give you goosebumps. Francine Moran Hughes died just last year from complications from pneumonia. She was 69.

The Burning Bed

2. David (1988)

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The true story of a young burn victim David Rothenberg (played by Matthew Lawrence) at the hands of his own father came to ABC in October of 1988. This made-for-TV treasure took us on a roller coaster of every emotion imaginable. One I still haven’t forgotten and scarred my ass for life.

Co-starring Dan Lauria, Bernadette Peters, and John Glover, David is rather difficult to watch. Watching the destruction and ultimate betrayal of trust between David and his father is something not only any parent, but any sane humanoid would find difficult to swallow. I mean, he set his kid on fire for fuck’s sake! If that wasn’t horrific enough, we witness a struggle and burden I would never wish on any parent- David’s mother. However, underneath the horror story is a tale of heart-warming triumph as we watch little David become a stronger human being than anyone could ever foresee. On a personal note, I lose my shit every time on the scene with little David trying to eat ice cream in his body burn cast.

Today, David is doing well and if anyone is interested in following him, here’s his facebook page.

 

David

 

 

1. A Cry For Help: The Tracy Thurman Story (1989)

5 Made For TV Movies That Traumatized the Hell Out of Us

Holy Buck, nothing in the universe will ever top the traumatizing visual this film based on the vicious attack on Miss Tracy Thurman courtesy of her estranged, psycho of a husband, Buck Thurman.

Starring Nancy McKeon as Tracy and Dale Midkiff as the insufferable Buck, the story follows the pair’s tumultuous relationship from the moment they met, through the abuse, and finally the incident on Norwell St. on June 10, 1983, that nearly killed her. And that incident reenacted for this film that premiered in October (horrifyingly appropriate) on NBC, is ridiculously disturbing on so many levels. AND LONG AS HELL. It literally seems to last for a good 15 minutes. I just want to break everything in sight as I sit and watch this all go down, with so many people watching and doing nothing. An incompetent cop about to shit his pants who just stands there asking politely for the knife dripping with Tracy’s blood from Buck’s hand. All while he’s holding the ex-couple’s three-year-old son mind you. I rage with all the fury every time I think about it. This is all really happened, and it makes me so angry.

However, in light of the attack, Tracy’s survival, and the police department that failed her, a lawsuit filed by Tracy and her lawyer Burton Weinstein brought about sweeping national reform of domestic violence laws, including the “Thurman Law” (aka the Family Violence Prevention and Response Act) instituted in Connecticut in 1986. Making domestic violence an automatically arrestable offense, even if the victim does not wish to press charges.

You go girl. Also, if you have the balls and the stomach, here’s that clip I was ranting about.

 

10 Most Rockin’ ’80s Cartoon Intros

 

If there’s anything we can remember distinctively about our favorite cartoons from our childhood, it’s most certainly the intros. The  ’80s are undeniably associated with over-the-top awesome music, bright colors, and spandex galore. So when it came to dazzling the eyes and ears of children of the era via animation, it came as no exception.

Even if it’s been 20 plus years since you’ve laid eyes on your favorite Saturday morning splendor, chances are you can totally remember that rockin’ tune that opened the portal to the castle of Greyskull or man-cats in blue spandex. I’m even willing to bet you probably catch yourself humming one of these intros every so often, like a trapped vortex of ’80s epicness spinning around in your dome. Well, if not, you’re about to for sure. And I’m not the least bit sorry about it!

I have to say it was pretty daunting ranking these magnificent ‘toon openers. The only proper way to get this task fairly done was to use the “head-bobbing method”. Basically, how hard it got my head bobbing back and forth like an idiot headed to the Roxbury.

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Anyways, according to the all mighty head bob, here are the 10 greatest cartoon intros of the ’80s!

 

10. Hulk Hogan’s Rock ‘n’ Wrestling

Sadly, (and this is so irritating of the WWE) anytime someone uploads that glorious intro to Hulk Hogan’s Rock ‘n’ Wrestling, it gets taken down pretty quick. Sometimes you’ll be lucky if you catch it. But today is not that day my lovely readers. Luckily enough this kick-ass tune is quite awesome enough to hold on its own. Now just imagine Hogan and his animated buddies hopping in the Wrestling Roadster, while being chased down by Piper and his posse. Then a live-action, fully dressed in red spandex Hogan walking the city streets fist-pumping to this fine tune. You’re welcome.

 

9. Heathcliff

He may have not been quite as popular as that other smartass orange cat, but goddamn if he didn’t have the better cartoon opener. I don’t remember one thing about this show, other than the cool alley cats. But I sure as shit can sing this tune without skipping a beat. That has to count for something.

 

8. Ducktales 

Oh man, this one hits right into the nostalgia membranes-woo-hoo! Even if you never watched this, (and who are you if you didn’t) you remember and KNOW every word to this song- woo-hoo! Shit, now I can’t stop with the woo-hoos’. Curse you McDuck!

Just kidding. We love you. Woo-hoo.  RIP Alan Young.

 

7. Transformers

Muck like with Ducktales, chances are you at least know some of the lyrics. Come on, who doesn’t recognize, “Robots in disguise“? You’d seriously have to have been living in Gollum’s cave of riddles to not know at least that part. Plus, it’s basically robots fighting each other. What’s not to love here?

 

6. Alvin and the Chipmunks

It was inevitable a show centered around a trio of singing chipmunks that parody Michael Jackson songs were going to end up on this list. I mean, if the intro theme can’t suck us into a show of that nature, you’re kind of screwed. Love or hate the talking tree rodents, that tune is undeniably catchy.

5. Thundercats

HOOOOOOOOO!!!!

This intro gives you ZERO explanation of what this show is about. But the flashing lights, super ’80s-ish music, and all the energetic ass-kicking sucked you in anyway. When you heard this as a kid, you got damn excited to plop a squat on that oversized bean-bag chair and watch this badassery with a big bowl of cereal. And then maybe whack your little brother over the head with your plastic sword in the midst of all the excitement.

 

 

4. The Real Ghostbusters

Well of course, the more animated theme of  Ray Parker Jr’s smash hit from the 1984 blockbuster of the same name, was going to be included. Hell, even Rowan is getting down on this rockin’ classic intro to, quite frankly, one of the most badass cartoons to ever grace the screen on Saturday Morning.

 

3. He-Man and the Masters of the Universe

The most powerful man in the universe also had one of the most powerful (and fuckin’ spectacular) intro themes in cartoon history. Much like with Thundercats, the opener is bright, flashy, and raging with testosterone; making you want to just sit the hell down and satisfy your senses with Skeletor mercilessly ripping into the He-Fool with epic insults. Face it guys- the Bone Daddy of Eternia was the real star here.

 Image result for skeletor laughing

 

2. Jem and the Holograms

There could be an argumentive debate on which Jem intro is superior- the other I’m referring to is the Barbie-like “Jem Girl” theme. However, the fact that The Misfits don’t get a little solo bit in the latter, automatically makes it the weaker version in my own humble opinion. Also, this may be another unpopular opinion on my side, but while Jem and her friends are truly outrageous in their own right, The Misfits had the better songs, period. I can only imagine what kind of rad as hell intro could have been with Pizzazz at the helm. Oh Hell, just bring them back and give them their own show already.

 

1. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

I think it might be fair to say that the Ninja Turtles not only reign as High King for cartoon intros but quite possibly the animated era of the ’80s altogether. When poor He-Man fell from grace (that atrocious 1987 film may have been the final nail in the coffin), four smart-ass teenage kung-fu mutants took the crown as THEE most popular show for both boys and girls for the remainder of the decade. The exciting in-your-face opener is just the greasy pepperoni on top of a delicious pizza with a load of glorious ’80s cheese (but not too much) and a perfect solid dough underneath, Making this not only the most kick-ass intro to really get you excited for an episode but one of the greatest cartoons of the decade as well.

Great, now I just made myself hungry. Now if you’ll excuse me I have tomato bread to consume.

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What’s your favorite animated ’80s intro? Stay tuned as we dive into righteous ’90s next week!

 

 

Happy Dirty 30! The 15 Best Horror Films From 1988

Call me an old dried up fart-face, but it’s just so hard to accept that the legion of films we’re about to dive into, turn the dirty 30 this year. However, here we are in 2018 and our beloved movies first discovered by young horror fans at our local corner video store, are hitting a major anniversary milestone- and I’m a throwing a party for these glorious horror classics.

The wonderful years of ‘86 and ‘87 are pretty much unanimously considered from all of us, important years for the horror genre. Churning out such classics such as The Fly and Hellraiser throughout those time periods, paved the way for another banner year for horror fans in 1988; giving us a ridiculously awesome amount of films that still manage to give us cinematic boners thirty years later.

Speaking from the gut here, the year of ‘88 may just be one of the greatest years for the genre unofficially dubbed the “Slasher Decade”. From the beautifully constructed sequel to the above- mentioned Hellraiser, to the introduction of one of horror’s greatest tiny terrors in the form of a plastic doll, these movies filled our little horror hearts with all the fuzzies. For some even, opened up the door to the wonderful world of horror cinema upon seeing the hypnotizing VHS artwork that lined the horror shelves. Because as we know, video rental stores were all the jazz in this era and served as our savior from the word of mouth for the next cool movie to check out. So without further adieu, let’s retro rewind back to 1988 and look at some of the year’s best and brightest of horror!

 

15. “Night of the Demons”

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Night of the Demons is universally well-known among horror fans, especially from this tubular decade. Even if you haven’t seen this gem, you sure as hell remember that unforgettable VHS cover art from the video rental horror shelf. Hell, it’s what prompted me to rent the damn thing as a kid. Anyway, I feel like this delicious slice of cheesy horror isn’t mentioned nearly enough. So on the list this Linnea Quigley masterpiece goes!

Demons mixes up the perfect blend of dark humor and campy horror the ‘80s era is known to churn out. Night of the Demons pulls off this combo so well that it’s almost like the perfect example of a classic ‘80s genre film that we’ve see parodied over and over again. (Like the countless titles involving the fantastic word massacre). We have a basic set-up of a bunch of teens partying it up on Halloween night at, well, of course, a funeral parlor-duh. Because nothing bad can come of that in a horror movie, right? Even better, they perform a séance and a glorious chase between humans and demons ensues throughout the movie. Also worth mentioning is the movie’s kick-ass soundtrack which holds one of my favorite intro instrumentals of any ‘80s horror film. Give that one a listen sometime!

 

14. “Maniac Cop”

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If you can’t appreciate this little 1988 treasure starring the man, the myth, the mustache, Tom Atkins and equally legendary Bruce Campbell, I don’t think I want to know you- period. The movie even has the cheesiest and greatest self-titled rap song that can only rival Fat Boys’ “Are You Ready for Freddy” tune. If that alone doesn’t sell you off the bat, nothing further will so just skip this entry entirely.

In a sort of twisted Toxic Avenger/ Robocop mash-up, a no funny business cop is sent to jail on, really a minor technicality, and is mercilessly beaten to death (or so we think anyway) by the housed inmates he had sent there. A little private justice inmate style if you will. After being moved from the cell to the morgue, enter the king of chins Bruce and a dead wife that has been pinned on him. Along with a fair amount of strange murders of both criminals and innocents alike. Well, the Bruce is an adamant one and sets out to prove his innocence beyond reasonable doubt. And finds an old, thought to be dead colleague now a vengeful disfigured nutbag, behind the murders. Beautiful, isn’t it?

 

13. “Phantasm 2”

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Plainly speaking, I’m not a huge fan of the whole Phantasm franchise. (Cut me some slack, we all have different tastes.) However, if I were to choose only one from the series to watch, Phantasm 2 would most definitely be the winner.

Continuing with returning characters Mike and Reggie, Phantasm 2 picks up several years later with Mike institutionalized on the belief that the events in the first film were nothing short of his own wild imagination. Oh, if only it were that simple Mike. After being released from the asylum and reunited with Reggie, the pair embark on a journey that leads them straight to the forever now iconic, Tall Man. And if you know anything about the Phantasm movies, you know damn well it’s time to get weird- and it sure does. But in the greatest of ways.  

Almost ten years later and a larger budget the second time around, the effects gave away a greater nightmarish look to those epic, murderous spheres. Which I think we can all appreciate.  Aside from the elevated effects, Angus Scrimm is the glue that holds it all together with his snarlish expressions and the feeling of uneasiness in his presence as the Tall Man. What a legend and is still sorely missed by us all.

 

12. “Monkey Shines: An Experiment in Fear”

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Infamous for his zombie films, George Romero gave us something different, and quite special in 1988- Ella the homicidal monkey. Also, goddamn if this one isn’t underrated and not talked about nearly enough. This adorable little monkey was absolutely terrifying and I frigging love it.

 

Ella is brought about when an athlete turned quadriplegic due to an accident, needs some help with daily duties and a little-added cheer in his now forever changed life. Enter Ella, an experimental monkey injected with human brain tissue turned service monkey. At first, the pair are actually adorable as hell. They really seem to take a shine to each other. However, Ella’s infatuation with her human friend takes a dark turn into some Marky Mark Fear type jealousy and she becomes a homicidal ball of fur and cuteness. She might be batshit insane, but she’s  pinch-the-cheeks delightful doing it. Which makes the idea that much more terrifying. She’s even adorable when she takes an angry piss on her once master and he calls her, “a slime” Actually, I laughed pretty damn hard at that.

 

11. “Waxwork”

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Ok, seriously: Fuck Madame Tussaud’s. Let’s hit up a Waxwork!

Imagine stepping into your favorite monster’s world. What would you do, and are you even prepared for it? Waxwork answers these questions for a couple of college students, (Zach Galligan-Gremlins, and Deborah Foreman- April Fool’s Day) among the crew. The six friends visit a Waxwork exhibit run by none other than David Warner (The Omen) that displays some iconic horror wax figures in all its glory. However, this magical house of wax can also give you a run for your money and life if you step inside one of the displays. You’ll end up in your favorite monster’s world and possibly become a part of it forever in the form of wax.

1988’s Waxwork is campy fan service entertainment at its damn finest and should be treated as such. If you love the classics Night of the Living Dead, Dracula, and Frankenstein, it’s kind of hard not to crack a satisfied smile during a viewing of Waxwork. Sure, it’s no masterpiece, but I dare you not to have some fuzzy feelings towards it after a watch. It just makes you feel you damn good about being a horror fan.

 

10. “Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers”

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1988 brought about the much-anticipated return of a horror icon from a seven-year hiatus, and after a foul outcry from fans who were pretty displeased with Season of the Witch. Welp, studios gave in and resurrected Mikey from the dead to unleash hell in Haddonfield once more. And although I have no issues with Halloween III personally, (in fact I frigging love it), I’m forever glad The Return happened as well.

The Return brings a once vegetable Myers awaken by the mere utter of the word “niece” and back to Haddonfield to finish off his one remaining family member. We get another dose of Donald Pleasance back as the ever-persistent hunter of Myers, and we’re introduced to one of today’s modern scream queens, Danielle Harris as Michael’s niece. It doesn’t hold that same type of magic as the original two sister films, but has its own spark of charm that has kept it a fan favorite with Halloween fans.

It may not be everyone’s favorite chapter of the life and times of Myers; but in between the Autumn essence of those beautiful opening credits that continues its feel throughout the film and Reverend Jackson P. Sayer, lies a pretty damn good sequel to the Halloween films.

 

9. “The Blob”

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Not everyone loves a remake of a true classic. But, in the tradition of The Thing and The Fly, once again a cinematic remake proves that it can be better than the original. Chuck Russell’s The Blob not only is superior to the 1958 sci-fi film, but more grotesque and memorable as well. Russell deserves all the praise here guys. Think about it for a second; how the hell do you take a campy B-Movie monster that looks like a mound of Jell-O and make it scary as fuck? Throw in some horrific death scenes at the hands of the Blob, have it swallow a child, and fling some body parts around the screen. Also, instead of using the “it came from outer space” gimmick, the thing was a government biological experiment. Which sort of makes it that much more horrifying. As the saying goes, “No beast on land, sea, or in the air is more dangerous than the man who rules the land.”

With a pre-Saw Shawnee Smith and Kevin Dillon taking on the ever-growing eater of children and star quarterbacks, The Blob is a gruesome step-up from its predecessor. There are a few cheese moments that take away from the more serious tone of this version. Like for example, Meg (Smith) shouting one-liners at the blob with a machine gun in hand. But hey, it’s the ‘80s. A slice of cheese is to be expected and especially when dealing with a man-eating, two-ton wad of Bill Cosby endorsed dessert.

 

8. “Friday the 13th 7: The New Blood”

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The seventh chapter of The Friday series brings about super zombie Jason and the man who breathed new life into the Crystal Lake slasher, Kane Hodder. Which makes The New Blood something really special when you look at the bigger picture. You can easily pick apart Hodder’s Jason from all others who have played the icon.His deep breaths, the menacing stance plus the way he moves around, make Hodder’s portrayal the most memorable, and a favorite among us fans. This being the first time Hodder slipped on the hockey mask, makes for a monumental moment in horror history indeed.  

The New Blood introduces us to Tina, a telekinetic teen brought to Crystal Lake for some therapy per her asshole doctor. During one of Tina’s episodes, she manages to raise Jason from the depths of the lake, and thus we can begin our official Friday the 13th film. The premise of a Carrie-like foe for Jason may seem a bit silly to some. But in the same breath, we’re talking about an undead being that has been resurrected FIVE times to maintain his excellent teenage kill record. So, come on. It’s not that bizarre really. Plus, I think it’s pretty funny to watch Jason struggle to kill this broad.

 

7. “A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master”

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You’re probably noticing a pattern of slasher sequels here. The jig is up- I’m a big-time sucker for the continuations of our horror icons. And Dream Master is no exception.

Aside from Dream Warriors, Nightmare’s fourth movie in the franchise is definitely my favorite of the batch. The Westin Hills survivors return in Dream Master along with a new group of fine, fresh meat attempting to carry on with a normal life. But hey, nothing is normal about being an Elm Street kid. Freddy is awoken once again, by the mighty power of flaming dog whiz no less, and picks off the kids one by one.

Dream Master has everything going for it in a great sequel. A strong, likeable female lead (Lisa Wilcox), and a vengeful Freddy with just the right amount of sense of humor, (I’ll never NOT laugh at,“How’s this for a wet dream?!”). The soundtrack kicks all the ass, and we got some really unique and memorable teenage kills. Sheila’s death and sunken in dummy stand-in inside the classroom gave me nightmares for weeks. Also, a chick turns into a cockroach. What more can you ask for?

 

6. “Pumpkinhead”

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Yet, another 1988 film with the balls to kill a kid, and the birth of one of horror’s coolest looking monsters. Add in the mix a vengeance-seeking Lance Henriksen and one crazy looking witch, and we got ourselves a national horror treasure.

Henrikson plays a grieving father, Ed Harley, who is hell-bent on making the reckless jerks who killed his son pay dearly. In doing so, he visits a supposed witch to seek help. The witch warns him that vengeance comes with a price, but Ed gives no fucks. On the witch’s orders, Harley digs up a disfigured corpse, brings it to the witch who revives it with blood from both Harley and his deceased son, and boom- Pumpkinhead on the loose!

What makes Pumpkinhead so damn special aside from Henrikson and a unique new monster movie, is the feeling that no one really gains a victory in this film. It’s all rather, sort of depressing when you think about. This isn’t your typical good vs evil horror flick. I see it more or less as a grotesque Aesop Fable that genuinely evokes emotions of the viewers. A monster story that makes you…feel things. Can’t really say a lot of horror movies on this list can pull that off. But Pumpkinhead is sure one of them.

 

5. “Killer Klowns From Outer Space”

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Before I say anything else, I just want to express my great sadness that there’s never been a sequel to this glorious festival of cotton candy cocoons and toxic cream pies. Such a travesty.

The title says it all really. A flying circus tent of horrors lands in a small town full of extraterrestrial painted nightmares looking to feed. Only a select few are hip to the fact that a race of alien clowns have invaded and are harvesting civilians of Crescent Cove for supper, so it’s up to them to stop it.

For a little B-movie about alien clowns no less, becoming such a cult-smash over the past 30 years, is something that cannot and will not be ignored. Made from the minds of the Chiodos Bros, Killer Klowns is raunchy, silly, and damn enjoyable whether you’re on your first or 100th viewing. I’m pretty sure we’ll still be talking about this ridiculously amazing movie in the next thirty years. All hail the mighty Jojo Klownzilla.

 

4. “The Serpent and the Rainbow”

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Of all of the wonderful index of film from Wes Craven, it seems odd to me that The Serpent and the Rainbow often gets the shaft. Not today friends, not today.

The black voodoo magic movie starring President Alien ass-kicker Bill Pullman as a professor in search for “zombie powder”, was inspired by the novel from Wade Davis. The Harvard scientist Davis dug deep into the culture of Haiti’s rich history of voodoo, with a specific focus on the undead. The movie inspired by the intriguing novel slowly burns with magnificent detail about the voodoo culture. So much so, there really hasn’t been anything since quite like it. Over the years, fans and critics have slammed the film for its inaccuracy in regards to the source material, but I feel like that’s just a bit unfair. The deal was made for a fictional horror movie loosely based on the book, not a documentary. And in my humble opinion, tops the pops as far as psychological thrillers go.

The imagery is entertainingly gruesome and my skin crawls every time I revisit this Craven joint. If you’ve yet to see this gem, be warned claustrophobes. There’s a coffin scene you won’t soon forget for years to come.

 

 

3. “ Hellbound: Hellraiser II”

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In regards to horror sequels, there isn’t too many out there that rival the original. However, Hellraiser’s sequel Hellbound certainly lives up to its predecessor and dare I say, slightly improves on it as well.

Director Tony Randel takes us into Cenobite hell with the continuing saga of Kristy; this time around in a mental institution. (Recalling the events from the first film, that would drive anyone to the edge of pure insanity.) Of course, we don’t stay in that setting for long and Kristy is granted access to a grand tour of Hell and an incredible visual expansion into Clive Barker’s beautiful Hellraiser universe. Speaking of which, is so wonderfully crafted, it’s ridiculously hard not to view it as a true piece of art in motion. The makeup effects are the excellence of execution. A great example is the manufacturing of cenobites, particularly the scene where Julia pushes Channard into the labyrinth elevator. In addition, we get to see Doug Bradley in pure form, as we get to witness Pinhead’s origins. It’s just straight up incrediballs.

I’d also like to note, if you plan on revisiting this gorgeous piece of work this year for it’s dirty 30, I highly recommend the uncut version. There’s only three minutes more of the film, but trust me. Those 180 seconds make a huge difference.  

 

2. “They Live”

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Simply stating John Carpenter’s cult classic They Live was ahead of its time, might just be the goddamn understatement of the cinematic century.

Starring the Rowdy one the late Roddy Piper, Carpenter’s film about the world’s elite and society’s blindness towards an underlying evil is absolute brilliance. Based on Ray Nelson’s short story “Eight O’Clock In The Morning”, They Live is one of those rare films that forces us as viewers to question our world and surroundings. A homeless drifter named Nada, (Piper), discovers that the upper class of society are in fact aliens incognito and manipulating society to spend money, breed, and blindly accept their status in the world with subliminal messages. Via the mass media and advertising, constant commands are hidden to obey and conform. In other words, the truth.

They Live is just as relevant today as it was then. In the film, the rulers are portrayed as a completely different race that perceives humans as inferior – something that can easily be correlated to our elected politicians. The presence of these strong messages is one of the reasons They Live became somewhat of a cult-classic, despite the fact that it was panned by movie critics upon its first release. 30 years later, the movie’s statement still holds plenty of ground; and quite frankly, freakishly realistic. Now that my friends, is some scary shit.

I really struggled here not putting this at numero uno. Alas, there’s only one little guy who could possibly obtain that kind of voodoo power over me and my love for the Hot Rod…

1. “Child’s Play”

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Well actually, it’s no surprise really that Chucky is, the greatest attribute to horror to come out of ‘88. Spawning six sequels over the span of thirty years, Chucky and the Child’s Play series has managed to capture our hearts, (and souls), with his wise-cracking, murderous shenanigans. And we can’t seem to get enough of this Good Guy.

We’ve seen the whole killer doll plot before Chucky’s debut, but never anything quite like this. We have to give a lot of credit to the casting of Brad Dourif as the voice behind the two-foot Lakeshore Strangler. Dourif has a strong, menacing presence in his voice (remember the Gemini Killer), yet in the same breath can be quite comical as well. The moment Chucky lets Karen know he’s indeed alive paired with various obscene insults, made you jump out of your seat initially, then slump back in a goddamn giggle.

“I’ll teach you to fuck with me!”

Almost as good as that super random, “Fuck you” in the elevator.

Originally titled “Batteries not Included”, and then “Blood Buddy” before the decided name of Child’s Play, 1988 gave birth to a legendary icon in the genre we love and cherish so deeply. Apart from the iconic status, the film truly holds its place firmly as a horror classic. Directed by Tom Holland and written by Don Mancini, Child’s Play raised the stakes and opened the door for the deadly doll genre to come out and play once again.

 

Happy dirty 30 you wonderful, ugly little shit.

 

 

I just couldn’t help myself.

 

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark: 10 Best Tales From the Series

If you clicked on this little list I’ve put together, then chances are you’re quite familiar with the paperback trilogy of nightmare nostalgia we’re about to dive deep into the rabbit hole with. Also, I’m willing to bet a good portion of you still have these books. In which you most likely bought with your lunch money at your third-grade book fair. I myself, unfortunately, don’t possess a lot of my childhood treasures from my youth due to a nasty fire that demolished a good portion of my materialistic belongings. However, one of the things I managed to hold onto despite disasters, multiple moving vans, and the entrance of adulthood is, of course, all three 1986 Harper Trophy Editions of “Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark”.

The urban legends that were revised and compiled into an anthology of books by Alvin Schwartz paired with haunting illustrations by Stephen Gammell, were the ultimate trophy on our bookshelves. And an absolute necessity for those Friday night slumber parties or weekend camping trips. Not much has changed, at least in my household anyway, as these books have stood the test of time and continue to encourage reading to now my own two little ones. Just as I would grab one of my books, and read to my own father in his chair when I was a much smaller Patti, I continue with the “Scary Stories” tradition as my kids now read to me. It’s wonderful and refreshing to know that I’m not the only parent who has passed down these nostalgic tales to their spawns and that the trio of books that parents once hated, has overcome the odds and still holds a near and dear place within our hearts.

37 years ago, the first installment of “Scary Stories” was published and is listed as being the seventh most challenged series of books for its violence and surreal, spine-tingling illustrations. Cool huh? Schwartz then followed with two more books, More Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark in 1984, and Scary Stories 3: More Tales To Chill Your Bones in 1991. In honor of the first books’ 35th anniversary this year, I’ve put together a fun nostalgic list of the 10 best tales from “Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark” series. This was no easy task thinning a list down to just ten, but I’m pretty satisfied with my final selections. So while we’re all patiently waiting for the highly anticipated Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark documentary to be available for public consumption, let’s celebrate 37 years of real Nightmare Nostalgia.

 

10. “High Beams”

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The tale as old as the ages and that has been told countless times and parodied in film makes number ten. This retelling of the story of a woman who is in very real danger not from who’s following her, but what lurks inside her car is based on a similar story that came out of Waverly, Iowa about a man hiding in the back seat of a woman’s car. She had stopped to get gas, and the attendant noticed the presence of a male figure in the back seat. He did not giver her change, so when she returned to pocket the rest of her money after pumping her gas, the attendant informed her of the situation and called the police.

 

9. “The Wolf Girl”

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This legend that is retold by many cultures throughout (mostly) the Southwest, involves a newly born infant whose mother did not survive childbirth and the baby was nowhere to be found. The father who had made the discovery in the story also took notice of what looked like wolf tracks around the area, so it was assumed the baby had been eaten by wolves. A few years later, people would report sightings of a young girl running around naked with long hair in the company of wolves. Numerous legends of children raised by wild animals or left to fend for themselves have inspired such books as The Jungle Book and Island Of The Blue Dolphins. However, Schwartz’s version is my favorite.

 

8. “Such Things Happen”

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Witches had a pretty bad rep back in the day, and still, in present times, are scoffed at by those who don’t understand. Schwartz based this tale from an American legend where a man is believed to be tormented by a nearby witch and takes it upon himself to try to stop her. According to Schwartz’s notes, “I adapted and expanded this theme to point up the conflict between education and superstition that may arise when an educated person feels like they are out of control.” And the tale he wrote is a pretty great little story.

 

7. “The Drum”

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This odd tale of two beastly children whose selfish wants become an unimaginable consequence is a cautionary tale told to children through the ages to basically behave or you’re getting a goddamn mother with glass eyes and a wooden tail in place of the one you have now. That’s actually pretty terrifying. The tale seems to have originated from England in the nineteenth century and then migrated to the states.

 

6. “Just Delicious”

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This one made me laugh more than most of the featured comedic tales that were often found towards the end of the book. This tale has been revised in many different countries and the theme stays pretty similar. The stories usually involve a man, while Schwartz swaps gender roles in his story, whose family is starving steal a heart or liver from a nearby funeral home to feed his family. Later that night, the ghost would come looking for said missing organ and take the lives of those who consumed it.

5. “Bess”

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As an avid animal lover, this one hurt the feels a tad when I was young. Based on an old European legend originally called “Oleg’s Death”, the story follows the same structure as in this book. The tale of a man who lived in fear of a horse, for it was foretold the horse would cause his death. Presumably, entering the safety zone after the horse falls victim to old age…. LOL. Yeah, not so much buddy.

 

4. “The Red Spot”

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This irked the shit out of anyone who suffers even the mildest cases of arachnophobia. This creepy story derives from the folklore of foreign entities (such as these eight-legged monsters) invading our bodies and setting up residence. Or you know, laying a thousand eggs inside your cheek while you sleep. Stunning.

 

3. “The Haunted House”

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The legend of a young woman’s murder and the preacher who helped put the spirit at rest by locating the murderer is likely one of the most beloved and remembered stories from Schwartz’s trilogy of terrors. It’s definitely among the most unique of tales found within these books as stories of haunted house resemble one another, this one has a bit of a twist whereas the ghost of the young woman is not threatening whatsoever, but a spirit wanting justice. Of course, justice and revenge run rapid throughout “Scary Stories”. However, this one just hits all the right notes.

 

2. “The Thing”

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Lawdy does that picture give me the beautiful skeevies. The tale is based on a folktale out of Nova Scotia in a book called Bluenose Ghosts where “the thing” is an actual warning of ones own impending death.  I’ll take the guy in the robe over that face any day, thank you.

1. “Harold”

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Oh Harold, you silly scarecrow. Don’t you know laying out skin in the sun too long gives it wrinkles? You need to take some notes from Buffalo Bill. Anywho, the walking menace from the cornfields makes numero uno as the tale remains to this very day, the creepiest tale to come out of these books. The story of Harold is retold from a legend that came out of Switzerland and quite honestly, stories about man creating a life and it ultimately becoming something they can’t control is a tale we’ve heard time and again. From Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein to the Jewish tale of the Golem, Harold resembles the outline of such said stories as the creature that has been given life ultimately turns on its master. We all love stories of killer dolls. It is for that reason, this tale tops off this list.

What are some of your favorite stories from the books? Comment below and let’s talk nightmare fuel.

Scary Stories Paperback Box Set: The Complete 3-Book Collection