Made For TV: “The Secret Life of Jeffrey Dahmer”

If you were of sound mind in 1993, you may recall a horrific little made for TV movie entitled The Secret Life of Jeffrey Dahmer.  Or technically speaking, The Secret Life: Jeffrey Dahmer.

Oh yes, we’re going to talk about this fuckery.

Image result for the secret life of jeffrey dahmer

Frankly speaking, I’m not sure why this film isn’t talked about more often in horror circles. Visually the 1993 film looks pretty dated however, the movie that in my opinion, has most accurately depicted Dahmer’s perception of life and twisted state of mind, to this day holds up as THEE legit Dahmer movie out of the several that have popped up since the twisted killer’s arrest on July 22, 1991. And regarding gorehounds out there, it’s DEFINITELY the most brutal and by far the most unsettling to sit through. I’m not sure how I got away with watching this completely fucked up movie with my virgin 10-year-old eyes, but I most certainly did. Bless the golden age of HBO and the days when the boob tube was an acceptable babysitter for rugrats.

Directed by David Bowen and starring a convincible Carl Crew as the infamous Dahmer, The Secret Life is told from the killer’s point of view and laid out through the horrific 14 years of Dahmer’s life of murder and madness that resulted in the deaths of 17 young men and ultimately, leading up to his arrest. Crew (Dahmer) with those hauntingly calming voice-over monologues as a well-aware killer with an eternal fear of abandonment throughout the movie and ability to go from calm as a cucumber to unhinged is in my opinion, pretty underrated as Crew’s performance is quite the treat for fans of this type of film.

The Secret Life was released two years after Dahmer’s real-life arrest and one year prior to his death in prison, so the terrifying discovery of the acts from Dahmer was still fresh in the world’s mind. And the fact that the film played the no hold’s barred card with extremely violent sequences involving the murder of Dahmer’s victims, really set some folks off in the sensitivity department. Curious audiences who had followed the case knew to an extent, of the horrors Dahmer unleashed upon his prey, but I’m not so sure anyone was really prepared for the brutal savagery displayed on film that seemed like something out of a snuff flick but was in fact, reality of the final moments of the casualties of Dahmer. Bowen’s telling of the grisly murders and semi-humanizing Dahmer in a way to look deeper behind the monster didn’t sit too well with a lot of critics and viewers back in ’93 so the film seemed to drop off the face of the earth with the ending of the VHS era until a few years back when Intervision released a DVD that includes the original trailer, audio commentary with director Bowen, and a featurette with Carl Crew.

The Dahmer true tale of torture and terror is unsettling enough as it is and this movie goes balls deep right into it without adding any flair or big-budget fluff. And frankly, it works better that way. It feels like you’re watching something maybe you really shouldn’t be looking at. However, the story is told so well that behind the brutality of severed heads proudly on display in Dahmer’s fridge, are secondary elements in Bowen’s movie. Even so, it’s not for the queasy folks. And I wouldn’t suggest eating any beef stew during a viewing.

For those interested in revisiting or for first-time viewers, The Secret Life is available over on Amazon.

 

That Time Stephen King Made A PSA For Public Libraries

Remember when we had those weird PSA announcements in between those now retired amazing Saturday morning cartoons back in the day? You know, the little segments starring Smokey the Bear, stranger danger, and the infamous “This is your brain on drugs” frying pan and cracked eggs gem. Also, I don’t think we could never forget about the time Pee-Wee Herman warned us about the dangers of crack.

It’s pretty entertaining when you stumble on these beauties and remember how the boob-tube was once upon a time.

 

Celebrities using their star power for bringing awareness to dangerous situations to our fragile little minds of yesteryear, wasn’t an uncommon thing by any means, as you can see above. As a matter of fact, master of horror himself Stephen King used his status as well, the king of literary fright, to make a PSA on the subject of public libraries and the importance of reading. Some of you may be asking yourselves, “Public libraries? What is this mythical place?” Well, let Sir King give you a quick run-down in this fantastic retro rewind from 1992!

 

 

Kind of makes you want to wipe off the dust off that old library card now doesn’t it?

Horror VHS Lamps and Clocks Are a Retro Decor Dream

Ever sit in bad late a night trying to read your favorite Stephen King novel all the while trying not to disturb your partner? Of course, I know they make book lights, those weird headset lights, and all those other illuminated contraptions for such a problem. But these are just way more fun than an uncomfortable hunk of metal on your head, and frankly, wicked cooler as well. This past Summer, I stumbled upon the most beautiful little Etsy shop filled with VHS fuzzies of glory. And goddamn if it isn’t worth another shout out. Behold, the Horror VHS Lamps!

Retro Halloween lamp

Constructed by Etsy seller NancyJars (Hayley Summers)these customized glorious VHS cassettes are repurposed into table-top night lights perfect for any retro lover of pop culture. Each lamp is uniquely made per the buyer’s choice as you can customize one of your very own regarding the front cover, choice of colored lights, and when requested, will use an original VHS for that ultimate retro feel.

What’s even better is that the lights are battery powered LEDs and are completely safe and heat free! So if you’re buying one for a child’s room, a bit of extra reassurance for you. Check out below a sample of what’s currently available from the UK based Etsy shop, or contact the store directly by clicking here to get one customized just for you!

The Shining Lamp

Alien Lamp

Child’s Play Lamp

IT Lamp

The Exorcist Lamp

Troll Lamp

I really don’t think I could pass up this gem.

More recently, upon the success and massive demand for the appropriately named lamps “VHS Brightlights”, Summers dabbled into making desktop timepieces. Taking old-fashioned VHS cases, much like the ones you’d find at your local mom and pop video rental shop back in the day, and transforming them into working clocks perfect for your office desk!

vhs time

The Thing Clock

Lost Boys Clock

Twin Peak: Fire Walk With Me Clock

And of course, your’s truly had to have one for my own little work area.

 

 

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