They Live (1988)
Seems eerily prophetic, doesn’t it?
Earlier today, I flew into a fit of rage after Good Morning America ran some story about how young kids shouldn’t be wearing “scary Halloween costumes.” The implication was that kids (some as young as six, OMG!) who dress up as Leatherface or Jason will grow up and shoot their classmates, or whatever other ludicrous idea they were yanking straight out of 1999.
Anyhoo, it got me thinking about how I dressed up as Freddy Krueger when I was in preschool. I distinctly remember the drive to school, my mom worrying that this was not even remotely appropriate, but I was so excited. My teacher was less than thrilled as well, especially when I put my gloved hand on the table and terrified the cute little bunny across from me. But again, I was ecstatic, I was the coolest four-year-old, ever!
Now, if the fun-hater at http://tooscarycostumes.com/, the inspiration for the GMA story, doesn’t want his kids to wear Freddy, Jason or Optimus Prime (yes, even Optimus is too much for the precious snowflakes) costumes for Halloween, that’s fine. They’re his kids, they’re his business. But to imply that some trauma will come to other children if they carry a bloody chainsaw around is just plain offensive to me. He’s implying that my mom didn’t do her job properly and that just makes my blood boil because my mom is fucking awesome.
My mom let me watch Nightmare on Elm Street, Hellraiser, Friday the 13th, Child’s Play and Sleepaway Camp before I was even in kindergarten. When all the other parents were subscribing to the Disney Channel (remember those days?), we had HBO just so I could watch Tales from the Crypt. And look ma, no emotional trauma! Well, not from the movies at least… plenty from junior high though!
To this day, I love watching Jason decapitate two teenagers mid-coitus. Blood and guts are my idea of a good time, but sit me down in front of Toy Story 3 and I’ll blubber like a baby at the end. Those pictures I just posted a few minutes ago with the blind dog and its seeing-eye dog almost brought me to tears. Decades of horrific violence on screen and I’m still a big softy.
Now I know I’m just one person and anecdotal evidence doesn’t automatically prove these movies are harmless… but how many people do you know that got into horror movies when they were an adult? These movies have always been for kids, at least that’s when we get hooked, just like wrestling. They’re the forbidden fruit, those movies you’re not supposed to watch (though I never really had that hurdle), they’re just fun. I don’t know anyone that saw their first horror movie after they turned 18, we all grew up on this filth, and miraculously, none of us are slamming bimbos in sleeping bags against a tree trunk.