In the last couple weeks I've watched three Halloween movies with my neighbors. The first was that old standard, Hocus Pocus. Neighbor Mikki hadn't seen it for a while and kept asking questions that would have been answered if she just kept watching. As I've said before, I can suspend my disbelief for all its absurdities except for the straight teenage boy running away from Sarah Jessica Parker. Someone asked how old the movie was, and I said "Thirty years, almost," and then I remembered that I was born the same year it came out and I got kind of depressed. We also went to the North Logan Pumpkin Walk that night or the following night; I've already forgotten.
Later, at my insistence, we watched Little Shop of Horrors. I only watched it once when I was fourteen but I've listened to both the film and Broadway cast recording soundtracks many, many times. My parents had the former on a cassette tape and I can even remember what it sounded like when I sped it up to make the voices funny. Alas, at my current age I've acquired a neurotic level of empathy for fictional characters and an unshakable insecurity about all the suffering and cruelty and injustice in the world, and I don't find Steve Martin's sadistic dentist as funny as I used to. The scene with Bill Murray as his masochistic patient is still golden though. Neighbor Sadie walked in on that scene and asked what the heck we were watching and I explained that it was a musical about a talking plant that eats people and not, as it appeared at the moment, a weird dental porno.
Also at my insistence, we watched Scooby-Doo and the Witch's Ghost, a blast from the past. Since my neighbors talked nonstop through the first twenty minutes, they didn't anticipate the plot twist that anyone over the age of eight should be able to anticipate, so that was cool. When the Hex Girls showed up, Mikki said "That's Chris's kind of woman" and it was so random because I don't know how she correctly guessed that they turned me on as a kid.
When Emron and I sang along to their signature hit, Mikki decided that we should dress up as them, and Max, who'd never seen Scooby-Doo until now, should too because obviously we'd need a third one. That would have been really cool and made for some great pictures to share here, but I wasn't about to shell out for a costume.
My neighbors played cards after the movie, but I ran off to the institute dance, correctly anticipating that it would have candy and a movie playing. So I ate candy and watched The Nightmare Before Christmas, which I'd never seen before, and it was cool and visually interesting but I don't really think it's worth watching more than once so I'm not sure why it's such a classic. It wasn't very humorous and most of the songs weren't very memorable. Some girl sat by me and talked to me a little bit and it was weird but I missed her when she left. She thought the movie was creepy so it's just as well she didn't stick around for the climax.
Last night I went to ex-neighbor Hailey's Dia de los Muertos party (because she has to be pretentious and do things in Spanish to show off that she knows Spanish) and ducked out early to go to graduate instructor colleague Kylie's smaller party because I've got to be loyal to my graduate instructor colleagues. We played Quiplash, which had nothing to do with Halloween, and I didn't dominate like usual because I had worthy opponents. Then we played three variations on Mafia/Werewolf - first with BYU students getting killed off by DezNats, then with villagers getting killed off by werewolves, then with colonists en route to Alpha Centauri getting killed off by native Alpha Centaurians trying to protect their race from being overrun and slaughtered. On that last occasion, the colonists scored a swift victory with only one fatality, so that was bittersweet for those socially conscious graduate students.
I don't anticipate doing any more Halloween stuff today, on Halloween, since I just want to relax and do the homework that I should have done in the last few days but didn't because I'm bad at structuring time on my own.
Before the, uh, falling out with my ex-neighbor Talease, I hung out with her one evening and she loaned me Wizard's First Rule and we watched Legion because she found horror movies relaxing. Shortly thereafter the book inspired me to create a fantasy-themed Spotify playlist and her fondness for horror movies inspired me to create a horror-themed Spotify playlist as a gift for her, and of course I still have them both even though I've long since burned the book and never developed much of a predilection for horror movies.
The horror playlist is titled "Boo" and recently I added a skull emoji as I was adding emojis to most of my playlist titles. The other day it picked up a follower for the first time, so that was cool. I hope this follower has the right expectations. The playlist has children's songs, but it is not intended or appropriate for children. It has some more intense stuff too. But not too intense because, like Halloween itself, it is meant to be in fun and not just dark and unpleasant. I have an angst-themed playlist for being dark and unpleasant. So for example, I've reluctantly excluded Rammstein's song based on a true story of erotic cannibalism (if you haven't heard of Armin Meiwes, don't Google him), but the tamer one about normal cannibalism is fine.
Like most playlists, after its initial creation and spurt of adding songs for a few days, I settled in and just added another song periodically when I stumbled upon one that would fit. Then last month a new neighbor moved into the apartment where Talease used to live, and wasted little time in putting up Halloween decorations. She put up a plastic sheet with skeletons on it over the front door, and for a while I saw them out of the corner of my eye and thought they were people, and it triggered me into actively seeking out music to increase the length of this playlist. And I asked my returning neighbor Mikki to ask her for music recommendations, and then I waited a bit, and then Mikki added her to our little neighbor group chat, and what happened next is the entire reason for this post that I've been building up to, even though I'm just now realizing it's not nearly as funny if you weren't there.
Now you may be thinking, "That is kind of sassy, but it's not that sassy, just a little sassy." That was my thought, but it turned out to be one too many pieces of sass.
Within like ten seconds, before Levi had even responded, I heard yelling through the kitchen wall. I couldn't tell what she was saying but I could tell it was directed at me. Then with impossible speed, I heard banging all over my front door like a rapid-fire battering ram. This was kind of hypocritical on Mikki's part. She and ex-neighbor Hailey made fun of me once for knocking too timidly, so after that I always made sure to knock vigorously and then they complained that I sounded "like a serial killer" because of course serial killers always knock first, unless they have a no-knock warrant. Yet here she was just pounding away.
I opened the door just a crack and she said, "Say that to my face."
I pretended not to know what she was talking about. I pretended I didn't remember what I had just said thirty seconds ago because I text a lot of people. They weren't lies because there was no risk of her believing them.
I came outside, where she threatened to beat me up. Sadie stood a few feet back with a grin and her phone out to apparently record it. A neighbor from upstairs came down to see what the commotion was about, and my roommate who usually stays cooped up in his room came to the door as well. Mikki held a hand above her head and said she'd had it up to there with me, and then, before I could make a sassy comment, explained, "That's five foot three." She said something about a camel with straw stacked on its back. And maybe, despite her size, she actually could beat me up. Her dad's a cop and may have trained her in unarmed combat. I also know she used to carry around a screwdriver for self-defense. She said she knows how to break into my apartment and she knows where I sleep. Aren't double standards interesting?
She didn't beat me up because she actually loves the rush of anger she gets when I sass her. My roommate went back to bed and the rest of us talked for at least half an hour even though I should have been doing homework. Sadie gave me an unexpected number of song suggestions because it turned out that she loved music in general, but she wouldn't like my Halloween playlist because metal is the one genre she doesn't listen to.
That story was funnier in my head. Sorry.
This weekend, some of us are ticked off because two apartments are flooding because when the roofers illegally woke us all up at 6:30 to fix the roof the week before school started, they failed to actually fix the roof. So that's nice.
If you're stuck at home tonight because of the you-know-what, here's something to keep you entertained for a little while. Note that "The Monster Mash", "Spooky Scary Skeletons", "This is Halloween", and "Thriller", though all excellent songs, have been excluded from this list on account of being severely overplayed.
Erica Silverman - Big Pumpkin
If your kindergarten teacher didn't play/read this for you, you had a deprived childhood and may be entitled to financial compensation. Don't quote me on that.
Erutan - Come Little Children
A full length version of the song sung by Sarah Jessica Parker in the cult classic "Hocus Pocus". It's a silly movie, but what really ruins my suspension of disbelief is a straight teenage boy running away from Sarah Jessica Parker.
Sierra Games Staff - Consumite Furore
Creepy Latin singing from the intro to the gory and highly controversial 1995 computer game "Phantasmagorica", which, as every article about the game is obligated to point out, was banned in Australia.
Chorus Girls - Don't Feed the Plants
This original ending to the dark comedy musical "Little Shop of Horrors", replaced because of test audiences' negative reaction but now widely regarded as superior to the happy version, ranks as one of the most expensive deleted scenes of all time.
Iced Earth - Dracula
Rather sacrilegious, except that Dracula's rebellion against God is driven by the abhorrent false doctrine that his girlfriend has been damned for eternity for killing herself, so really, with the information available to him, he isn't wrong to respond as he does.
Rob Zombie - Dragula
Not really scary so much as too epic not to include. ("Epic" is professional music critic terminology for songs with loud electric guitars.)
The Key of Awesome - Emo Vampire
Believe it or not, there was a time when the Twilight series was cool, at least if you were a girl between the ages of twelve and fifty. My mother was possessed by it, and when I first met my friend Rachel at Youth Conference, her name tag identified her only as "Edward's Girlfriend". The backlash was inevitable.
The Living Tombstone - Grim Grinning Ghosts
A better cover of this song has never been found. I say that as one who watched on older version at the beginning of Disney's "Boo Busters" and "Witcheroo" VHS tapes (ask your parents what those were) and had a huge crush on live action Maleficent.
Information Society feat. Ayria - Heffalumps and Woozles
I found the original sequence quite unnerving as a child. As an adult, I find this cover both unnerving and lots of fun to dance to in private.
Hex Girls - Hex Girl
From "Scooby-Doo and the Witch's Ghost" (1999). Nowadays, this song is problematic because it promotes a double standard about consent, but we can still appreciate it as long as we recognize its historical context. It turns out this video also includes "Earth, Wind, Fire and Air" so that's a bonus track.
Debs & Errol - If I were an Undead Crawler
Parody of Barenaked Ladies' "If I had $1,000,000". Are zombies overrated? Yes. Is this song underrated? Heck yes.
Baha Men - It's Spooky in Here (Digimon Halloween Song)
You've probably never heard this, because it's from a CD called "Rhythm and Boos" that came in boxes of Count Chocula, Boo Berry and/or Franken Berry cereal in 2001. Some of my students weren't even born then. That's scary.
"Weird Al" Yankovic - Jurassic Park
Not that I've seen a lot of horror movies, or plan to, but I find "Jurassic Park" scarier than any horror movie I've seen. The Tyrannosaurus rex in particular always stops my heart. As a creature both fantastical and real, it's scarier than either a made-up monster or a random human serial killer. This music video is ironically much gorier than the actual movie, but it's all played for laughs, and the song's ending is unironically beautiful.
Bloodbound - Nosferatu
"Nosferatu" is a 1922 low-budget German film plagiarized from the novel Dracula that fortunately still exists even though Bram Stoker's heirs tried to have all prints destroyed. I have no idea what the word Nosferatu means, since the vampire's name is actually Count Orlok.
Judas Priest - Night Crawler
Personally my favorite Judas Priest song. And as dark and creepy as it is, it has a happy ending, or at least as happy of an ending as one could reasonably expect under the circumstances!
Jonathan Coulton - Re: Your Brains
The song that introduced me to the genius of Jonathan Coulton, and still his best work IMHO (though his music and lyrics for the Portal anthem "Still Alive" comes in close). Even my freshman year roommate playing it twenty times in a row failed to make me hate it.
Ozzy Osbourne - Scary Little Green Men
Even with his advanced age and ill health, the wizard of Ozz managed to release a killer album this year, which features this gem that beats out his other Halloween classic "Balk at the Moan" for a spot on this list. Aliens > werewolves.
Rammstein - Spieluhr
The gist of this song is that a small child wants to be left alone, so it [sic] pretends to be dead, and gets buried with a music box in its hand, and then the music box and the child's singing can be heard from beneath the earth.
Meco - Werewolf (Loose in London)
Even though werewolves < aliens, they still deserve some recognition. And so does Meco. Despite scoring a number one hit in 1977 with his disco cover of the Star Wars and cantina band themes, he's fallen into almost total obscurity, which isn't fair.
Consortium of Genius - What a Friend We Have in Cthulhu
Not a direct parody of "What a Friend We Have in Jesus", but it brings in that energetic clapping-type music that's one of the few good things about conservative Southern Christianity. And makes it about a guy with an octopus for a face.
Hap Palmer - Witches' Brew
Once upon a time, one of my Primary teachers had us sing this in Primary. I liked it better than most of the boring church songs we did.
Because I find rituals comforting, I habitually listen to both of these entire soundtracks on Halloween.
Jonne Valtonen - Alien Incident
This 1996 point-and-click game ("Muukalaisten yö" or "Night of the Aliens" in the original Finnish) actually takes place on Halloween, so it's appropriate that the aliens look like Casper the Friendly Ghost. Its rather strange music has really grown on me. I converted and uploaded the music files from the free Abandonia download, though there is additional music in the game that I don't know how to find and wasn't patient enough to record directly.
Alain Goraguer - La Planète Sauvage
This bizarre animated 1973 French-Czech co-production isn't a horror film as such, but the soundtrack is creepy and unearthly enough.
Look at me, persevering to bring to the world this post that nobody asked for even though my laptop battery is well and truly dead. I actually am impressed that my Asus Vivobook has lasted three and a quarter years, which is about two years longer than any of my previous laptops from three different brands, and that's even considering I spilled Tang on the keyboard in January 2018. And also, the motherboard or hard drive isn't even fried like in my last three laptops, so I should just be able to get a new battery and be good to go.
The first thing I did for Halloween was the annual North Logan Pumpkin Walk. It was a walk with a bunch of pumpkins.
Then I went to a meeting of USU's Asian Student Association where they talked about scary stories and urban legends from Asia. I saw it on Facebook and went for the scary stories and urban legends, not realizing it was a standard weekly meeting, but now I have to keep going back because they were all super nice and stuff. Okay, so the scary stories and urban legends are unsettling just to think about, which is obviously the point, but they're not real. But then we transitioned from just talking to watching YouTube videos, and then this adorable Vietnamese-American metalhead wanted to watch something about "the Hello Kitty murder", and she kind of neglected to explain that this was not an urban legend but a real life event. If you don't know what it was, I highly recommend not looking it up. It's the sort of thing that I was happier not knowing had ever happened to anyone anywhere at any time. But this girl kept a calm, pleasant smile on her face throughout the video. Sicko.
I didn't dare say this, and maybe it's a stupid thing to say now either, but I noticed right away that she looked virtually identical to the victim, at least as far as I could see from the little black and white photograph, and she's about the right age to maybe possibly have been conceived around the time the victim died, and as I said her interest in the story was a little unsettling... so I'm going to pretend I believe in reincarnation because that's cool.
Another real-life YouTube video we watched had to do with the haunting of the U.S.S. Forrestal after a horrific fire that killed 134 people. Personally, I have no problem accepting the many accounts at face value and believing that this haunting is legit. Ghosts and hauntings will probably never be scientifically verifiable but I don't think all the stories and eyewitness accounts throughout the world over the years can just be dismissed with a skeptical wave of the hand, and in this case, there are many such accounts. What makes it unsettling for me is not the persistence of life beyond the grave as such, which I accept as a basic tenet of my religion, but the way these spirits met their demise and how traumatized they must have been if they were still stuck haunting that ship for decades afterward. Burning alive or choking to death are horrible ways to die. Nowhere near as horrible as the Hello Kitty murder, which I highly recommend not looking up, but still not a joyride. And many of those sailors were probably draftees who didn't even want to be there.
Prior to the Logan Institute of Religion's "Scream Fling 2019", they solicited suggestions to update their stale music selections. The guidelines of acceptable suggestions specified no profanity, even though "Cha-Cha Slide", which has played at every LDS dance I've been to since 2007, has a swear word in it, at least according to American English and nowhere else (see a recent post on that topic). They also specified no references to immoral behavior, even though "Macarena", which has played at nearly every LDS dance I've been to since 2007, is almost entirely about immoral behavior. I suggested some songs, and then I had to go to the dance to see if they implemented any of my suggestions, which spoiler alert, they did not. They played a few of their old songs, a few fresh and catchy new songs, and a lot of forgettable crap.
For those who weren't around the last time I did so, allow me to once again list my favorite dance moves.
The "George McFly"
The "Salacious Crumb"
The "Clone Troopers"
The "Obscure Peanuts"
The "Aman Mathur"
The "Emo Phillips"
The "Wayne's World"
The "The Cheat"
The "Italian Schoolgirl"
The "Russian Riverdancer"
The "What is Love?"
Because most of the music was forgettable crap, though, and because yelling small talk at a stranger for three minutes isn't my idea of a good time, I ended up laying on a couch looking at my phone. There my friend Terrah and her sister and one of their guy friends found me and made me take a picture with them. Then we left and walked home, with Terrah's sister making judgmental comments about the slutty costumes of the girls going to the university Halloween party, and the guy friend making pervy comments about same. I hit on some guy in a bra as he passed by, and he invited me to his apartment later. But we went to Terrah's apartment and played "Truth or Dare", and then around 10:30 we decided to get food, spent about twenty minutes deciding where to eat, settled on Wendy's, and returned to Terrah's apartment, and about this time I was yawning and thinking how nice it would be to go to bed, but the consensus of everyone who wasn't me was that we should watch a horror movie, and I felt like I should stay up for that because social life. Yes, I regret it today but I'll be dead someday regardless.
I'm not really into horror movies. The only ones I've seen are "Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds", "Little Shop of Horrors", "Poltergeist", "Sleepy Hollow", "The Chipmunks Meet Frankenstein", "The Chipmunks Meet the Wolfman", and "The Star Wars Holiday Special". Perhaps it's because, as the Hello Kitty murder demonstrated, many horror movies are too realistic for comfort and not the sort of escapism I have in mind when I look for escapism. The movie we picked, "When a Stranger Calls", (2006 version), is a story that technically could have happened in real life even though it didn't. Serial killers exist, cell phones exist, and incompetent parents and law enforcement exist. Too realistic for comfort.
Yet I was pleasantly surprised to find it more unsettling than scary as such. I found myself viewing it through an objective, analytical lens as if I had seen a thousand of these movies. (Spoilers alert) Okay, so there's going to be a bunch of jump-scares that are actually false alarms, and Jill probably isn't going to die because then this movie would just be depressing and nobody would like it, and the killer is no longer scary when he reveals himself and gets angry because then you know he's no longer in control of the situation, and why are they acting like Rosa's body in the fish pond is a surprise when we all saw that coming forty-five minutes ago? Also, Hulu made us watch five to seven commercials every five to seven minutes, increasing the movie's runtime by at least fifty percent and effectively preventing the suspense from getting too suspenseful. Next time I will happily chip in three bucks to skip those.
Admittedly, it was a nice touch that the killer was literally just some random white male with no motive, backstory or name given. You only see his face briefly but you can tell he's pure evil because he has a scar. The most unsettling part by far is the very end when, despite an ostensibly happy ending, Jill is in a hospital bed with her parents and the doctors trying to calm her as she screams and thrashes around and hallucinates that he's after her again. Yay for our protagonist getting possibly lifelong PTSD. It's pretty unfair that teenage girls are always the victims in these movies. I mean, not that an adult would deserve it either, but at least with her fully developed brain she would have a better chance of processing the trauma. To say nothing of the kids, though at least they survived, unlike the original movie. But what Jill should have done is keep stabbing the guy with the fire poker once she had him down, until he was well and truly dead. Then she never would have made eye contact with him and she would probably have fewer hallucinations.
I know I keep saying "unsettled" or "unsettling". I'm not trying to be all macho by claiming that these things don't actually scare me as such. They don't, but plenty of other things do. I experience soul-crushing terror on at least a weekly basis. It's just usually instilled by more mundane things like seeing my crush at church or laying awake in bed at night and suddenly thinking in vivid detail about what it would feel like to fall out of an airplane. These other things unsettle me because they remind me how permanently uncomfortable I am living in this crapsack world of pain and injustice, but what can you do?
I want to give a completely unrelated shout-out to an old friend of mine and some guy I don't know, who recently started a podcast dedicated to Star Wars in general and Knights of the Old Republic in particular. Check out their first episode here:
The last couple weeks have brought a few phenomenally crappy days that I would have liked to sleep through. Thanks go out to Tyler, Jen, Eliana, and Lorelei for their support, to Tori for the pizza and brownies, and to the guys from church for a blessing. They're relatively new to the ward and I've been here for over five years so by all rights I should be the one taking them under my wing and showing them around and stuff, but I guess that's not my thing. And then they asked "Is there anything else we can do for you?" and I never know how to answer such an open-ended question. How much money can I ask for without being rude? I was told there's a spot reserved for me in the Celestial Kingdom. I assume that's metaphorical. What's a "spot" in the Celestial Kingdom? "Here's where you'll be sitting for eternity. It's very comfortable." This is a thought I had while half-awake and delirious. Sometimes I think that should be my excuse for my entire blog.
The other day while Audrey was working at her computer I snuck up on her and put my face really close to hers and waited for her to notice. When she did, she jumped and moaned with fright. I thought that was a rather rude and uncalled for reaction to my new look.
Audrey: That was not nice!
Me: Then why are you smiling?
Audrey: Because it was good.
Me: You should be flattered that I tried to look like you.
Then she left and came back and I pointed out that there was something on her water bottle. She looked at it and then just rolled her eyes at me, which I felt was unfair because I saw someone else scare her with a considerably smaller spider. But apparently I'm a "bad actor" or something.
But a few minutes later, I started to get jealous of the attention she was giving her computer instead of me, so I snarled and made the spider jump on her hand. And somehow that scared her. As you can surmise, it was a very good day.
Reader discretion is advised for this section due to disturbing content.
Even at my ripe old age I still periodically become aware of disgusting or disturbing things that make me wish I didn't live on this planet. And then I often feel compelled to keep looking at them or researching them until I get all the facts and/or become desensitized. For example, I once learned in a roundabout way that a 1995 computer game called "Harvester" has a scene of children eating their mother. I felt compelled to actually look up the scene on YouTube, and I was glad I did because it was far less disturbing than in my imagination. I had imagined the children sitting around a dinner table with their mother's corpse sprawled across it. In the actual scene, however, the mother is very much alive and too tired to pay attention to the children taking bites out of her limbs. She matter-of-factly explains to the player that this is a metaphor for parenthood. So I could rest easy with that.
"Look, tell you what, we'll eat her, if you feel a bit guilty about it afterwards, we can dig a grave and you can throw up in it." (Name that reference)
"Harvester" is still gratuitously disturbing, but another game released that same year makes it look like a church picnic. "Phantasmagoria" was very controversial upon its release and is extremely violent even by today's standards. The backstory is essentially this: a magician messes around with dark arts and gets possessed by a demon that makes him murder a succession of five wives in various horrific ways that I don't feel like describing. Local people just assume these deaths are all bizarre accidents, which is pretty stupid of them. I mean, I'm sure with all the billions of people who have ever lived that some guy has indeed been unlucky enough to have five wives die in bizarre accidents, but his neighbors should have been veeery suspicious. Certainly the fifth wife in this story would seem to have been a few fries short of a Happy Meal - perhaps she fell prey to the gambler's fallacy and wrongly assumed that because four wives had already died in bizarre accidents, it was less likely that she would - but to her credit she figures out what's going on and her lover manages to mortally wound the magician before he kills both of them.
A century or so later, a young couple moves into his mansion. Original, right? The woman goes exploring and accidentally unleashes the demon which, unknown to her, possesses her husband. Over the course of a week she learns the backstory and witnesses all the murders in magic flashbacks. Meanwhile, her husband is becoming more and more of a jerk. In the most controversial scene of the game, which the writer argued was necessary for some reason, he rapes her. And later on he chases her and tries to kill her. Oh, and also there's an old woman and her mentally handicapped son who get killed somewhere along the way. There are several gory death scenes for the protagonist throughout the game if the player fails, most famously getting her head ripped in half. But if the player succeeds, she kills him instead and then dispels the demon. And then she wanders away from the mansion in a daze. The end. I mean, I'm sure there were also years of therapy afterward but those aren't shown.
I haven't played the game or watched a walkthrough of the game and I'm never going to do either of those things, so my knowledge is incomplete, but I think that's about it. Oh, and all the characters are portrayed by live actors. Delightful.
I sort of get why this sort of thing is appealing. It's not meant to be pleasant. You're not supposed to "enjoy" the gore and the pain and the terror, per se. But it is cathartic somehow to experience fear and disgust in controlled environment at times. I think it's similar to the appeal of sad movies and songs. Sometimes I'm not in the mood for "Walking on Sunshine", you know? Which is a great song, don't get me wrong. But sometimes a guy singing about how he wants to die is more helpful because it's like someone is commiserating with you instead of invalidating your problems and telling you to just get over it. And I think this is similar. While most of us try to ignore the ugliness in the world most of the time for our happiness and sanity, there can be something refreshing in a sick kind of way about embracing it now and again. I don't know, maybe this is all crazy talk. But I think I get why people liked this game. It was Sierra's first title to sell over a million units and made their stock value skyrocket.
Myself, like I said, I have no desire to get any more into it than my web research already did. I did recently watch a legit horror movie for the first time (horror comedy musicals don't count and I found "Poltergeist" to be far more weird than scary) and while I don't intend to make a habit of that, I did appreciate the experience. Even though Christopher Lee's and Christopher Walken's acting talents were grossly underused and I'm not just saying that for the obvious reason. But at least the people in "Sleepy Hollow" died quickly. Swish, plop, dead. That reminds me, I wrote a comic script related to that topic.
Horseman: Oogedy boogedy! It is I, the headless man, the spookiest spook that ever spooked!
Tyler: Where's your horse?
Horseman: Oh, I'm not a horseman anymore. Feeding and cleaning up after him was such a hassle.
Tyler: Well, he was part of your trademark. You just aren't distinctive or spooky without him.
Horseman: So... this isn't cutting it?
Tyler: Use the horse, spook.
If it had been more like "Phantasmagoria", way over the top for my tastes, I would have been too squeamish and walked out. That's definitely not my speed. And the reason this sort of thing really bothers me is that while games and movies are fictional, pain is not. And they remind me of that and I hate it. Every type of suffering portrayed in "Phantasmagoria", and worse, has been experienced by someone somewhere. I hate to think about that. Physical pain is the worst in my book. I feel very blessed to just have this emotional crap. Give me depression over a hangnail any day of the week. Oh, and also I was forced to ponder the question of how, demon or no demon, you can be sure that your spouse will never murder you. And the answer is, you can't. Yay. Getting married is an enormous leap of faith. Of course, if their previous four spouses are dead, there's a very slight chance that just might be a teensy little red flag.
Phantasmagoria - Take a Stand
I love listening to music, of course, but on top of that I have a literal addiction to collecting it without regard to whether I actually like it. I've downloaded thousands and thousands of songs from the internet without listening to them first, often just because they were (legally) free. And that includes hundreds of soundtracks from games that I've never played. Now Phantasmagoria is on that list. The music, fortunately, gives no indication of the disturbing stuff. Unfortunately the quality is crap because of how it was compressed. The opening theme, "Consumite Furore" ("Consume With Your Rage"), used a choir of 150 people, but with how the quality was reduced it sounds more like a third that many. Anyway, this cheesy closing song stands out in stark contrast to the overall tone of the game, and redeems it a bit in my eyes. It's a testament to the indomitable human spirit, to having hope in the face of ungodly nightmares that no one should ever have to live through. And it's catchy.
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About the Author
C. Randall Nicholson is a white cisgender Christian male, so you can hate him without guilt, but he's also autistic and asexual, so you can't, unless you're an anti-vaxxer, in which case the feeling is mutual. This blog is where he periodically rants about life, the universe, and/or everything.