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A long time ago, All Hallows Eve was a scary night. It was the time of impending darkness, a time when your deepest fears were closer to reality. Children, out at night in costumes, unrecognizable could fall victim to an unknown terror. The Boogeyman. The Darkness. The doubt inside of what’s real and unreal. That was before Wal-Mart and Target. Before the bad time. Stripped of its inherent creepiness, Halloween now stands as a deranged version of Christmas. Just as saccharine and simplified to the lowest of humanoids.
In Charlie Brown terms, Halloween has gone too commercial. Horror films are being shown on the Family Channel, dammit! Cut-up, sliced and diced and robbed of their creators’ vision. It’s a product sold as good, clean, family fun. Nothing evil about that. Just a fun time to be had at your local church. People who could only be described as imbeciles are buying Beanie Baby versions of vampires, zombies and ghosts. If you think Jesus would be upset about our interpretation of Christmas, imagine what the Great Pumpkin is thinking! No wonder he never shows up. I’m going to channel my inner Linus and explain to those lame idiots who put up inflatable, cute vampires in their lawn what Halloween is all about.
Vampires are not cute. They are blood-sucking, pale, undead creatures of the night who feast on the weary and kidnap helpless virgins. Real vampires tend to be sexy, diabolical and difficult to kill. Possessing super-human strength and the curse of immortality, they have simultaneous desire to kill and love.
Zombies are not cuddly. They are rotting corpses come to life to eat the living, preferably their brains. Smarter than you think, funnier than Dane Cook. They should eat Dane Cook.
To me, Halloween has always been the darkest of nights. A time where you would visit old cemeteries with a group of friends, put an Ouija Board on a grave and try to contact the dead. Playing tricks and not just eating treats. Visiting abandoned houses in the middle of a cornfield and wonder if you hear just the wind…or something else? Samhain. The feast of the dead. The end of summer and the beginning of the wilting. A coldness inside, one you can’t shake off.
As a child, I watched “The Shining”, “Carrie” and “Halloween.” The stuff nightmares are made of. Wes Craven, John Carpenter, Stephen King, Clive Barker, David Cronenberg and Sam Raimi could find their way into your psyche. Find the fear passed through generations. Fear you had before you were born. Fear that exists when you’re still in the womb. Fear which exists because it’s always been there. Fear, like love is unexplainable. These emotions embrace much closer than that of hate. One can be full of love and possessed with fear. One can be full of hate and controlled by fear. This is in contrast to coloring books sold by Wal-Mart. Or is it…Could cute Halloween books be used to control our children?
Halloween III – The Night No-One Comes Home:
That’s what Halloween is all about, Charlie Brown.
Why So Serious?