Nuggets of Wisdom

Thursday, October 31, 2013

My Top 13 Scariest Nostalgic Moments (#1)

Lists like these usually prove that our scariest moments tend not to come from scary movies or shows, but rather, from media that was never meant to be scary to begin with.

There's a big reason for that.

When you watch something horror-related, you know going in that it's going to be scary. So when the scary moments arrive, they're not as scary considering you were expecting them in the first place.

But when you watch a movie or television show that's not meant to be scary, only to encounter a scary moment halfway in, it jars you more so because you weren't expecting it. The moment clashes with the rest of the film or episode, catches you off guard, and ingrains itself into the darkest reaches of your psyche.

So its comes as no surprise that the scariest moments in our childhood come from the most innocent and innocuous of places, and as far as children's entertainment goes, there's one television show that is the most innocent and innocuous of them all.

Sesame Street is the living incarnation of childhood innocence. It's the show that we all grew up with. It's the first show that most of us ever see. And that's how it was supposed to be. This is the show that introduces us to letters and numbers and colors and other basic concepts while first and foremost entertaining us. It was the first show of its kind to prove that children can have fun while learning at the same time. No other show on television balances education with entertainment as well, and this is the main reason why it’s managed to survive for 40 years and counting.

So how can a television show as wholesome and innocent and child-friendly as this possibly traumatize its young viewers?

Very well actually!

Underneath its bright and colorful facade, Sesame Street has plenty of dark moments, with certain elements, segments, or even characters unintentionally frightening its younger viewers.

One of its characters is a vampire, for Celestia's sake! Just whose bright idea was it to make an animated corpse that feasts upon the blood of the living a main character for a children's show?

And it really comes to no surprise that some of the show's scarier moments originated during its earlier years. To its defense, this was the first children's show of its kind, so the creators had to experiment to see what was appropriate or not appropriate to show children.

But I guess this was so bad that in DVD releases of the earlier seasons, they had to put in a disclaimer explaining that these episodes are not suitable for today's children. Yeah, these Sesame Street DVDs have disclaimers telling us that they're not suitable for children!

You can only guess as to how many of these scary moments managed to make it past the approval of the creators. You could say they were merely experimenting and didn't know whether it would be suitable for children or not. Maybe it was due to the psychedelic drugs used back in the 60s. Or maybe it was due to Jim Henson's own twisted sense of humor.

Either way, many of these moments really scarred us as little kids, to the point where there's even an entire Sesame Street Nightmare Fuel page on TV Tropes.

I could create an entire list about these scary Sesame Street moments. Who knows? Maybe that'll be next year's list? (Hint! Hint!)

But for this list, I'll talk about the moment that scarred me the most as a kid, the moment that always sent me running out of the room screaming with a lingering trail of piss.

And this wasn't just a singular moment that would occasionally. Oh no! It was a recurring sketch—or rather, an element of a sketch. And no matter how many times I was exposed to it as a kid, it never ceased to creep me the freak out. Even as an adult it still creeps me out .

Ladies and gentleman, my scariest Sesame Street moment, and my scariest nostalgic moment is...




#1: The Sesame Street News Flash intro

Before everyone’s favorite frog became the host of the Muppet Show, Kermit began his career on Sesame Street as a roving reporter for breaking news stories, mostly about fairy tale and nursery rhyme characters.

Now these sketches weren’t scary in and of themselves. In fact, most of them were rather humorous, with most of the humor centering on the fairy tale not playing out as originally written and with our green reporter ending up as the butt of the joke.

For example, in one sketch, Kermit reports on Cinderella’s visit from her fairy godmother, who continuously messes up her ball gown until she accidently ends up dressing poor Kermit in drag and forcing him to attend the ball.

However, many of these sketches, while humorous, did have their fair share of disturbing content.

Examples? Two word: Humpty Dumpty.

I’m too chicken to even show you any pictures of that felt abomination, but trust me, when you watch that video and see the character design, after you finishing screaming and pissing yourself, you’ll be wondering what the freaking hell the creators were thinking.

But for me, what continuously scared me about these sketches, regardless of whether or not they were funny, were how they were introduced.

Imagine this: you’re a three-year-old kid watching Sesame Street. Everything about the show is bright and colorful and simply happy and upbeat. Just then the screen turns black with a screeching dissonant tone playing in the background and an ominous disembodied voice telling you that your normal programming has been interrupted.

I kid you not, that intro always freaked me out as a kid, sending me screaming out of the room or simply reaching for the remote to change the channel.

Not matter how many times this intro occurred, no matter how many times I saw it, no matter how much older I became, this three-second moment always managed to scare the ever-loving piss out of me.

Even as an adult I can’t stand to watch it. Even while writing this blog post, I’ve refused to watch any of the sketches in fear that I would come face-to-face with this thing, sending me into a panic attack and forcing me to relive bad childhood memories that I’ve since repressed and kept stowed away into the back reaches of my mind.

Now I know what you’re thinking: how in the world could you possibly be scared by this three-second intro to an otherwise harmless recurring sketch featuring a beloved Muppet character?

Well, I’ve been wondering this all my life, and having become older and wiser and having developed critical thinking skills, I can finally critically assess this moment and explain why it managed to scare me so.

Allow me to break this down for you:

1) The background. The title screen is black. Black is a very dark, foreboding color. This drastically contrasts with the rest of Sesame Street, which is otherwise bright and colorful.

2) The storm cloud logo. The logo is a storm cloud with a very sharp-looking lightning bolt flashing onscreen. (Because as we all know, children just LOVE thunder and lighning!)

3) The music. Oh sweet Celestia, the music--if you can even call it such! It’s really noise. The sound is like what you get if you tossed a box of rusty screws into a blender, set it to puree, then tossed it into a washing machine while a jet plane flies overhead. It’s a harkening dissonant tone that reverberates your very soul.

4) The announcer. And if that weren’t creepy enough, the disembodied, almost foreboding, there's the narrator telling you that your normal programming has been interrupted for a breaking news story. I’d almost imagine this is the voice you hear announcing your entry into purgatory.

5) The unpredictability. What really got me about this intro scene was how it would just pop up when you least expected it. You could be watching Ernie annoy the freak out of Bert or be listening to a calm, soothing song when this pops right the freak out of nowhere. All of a sudden, you are faced with a dark screen, foreboding imagery, dissonant music, and a foreboding narrator.

All of that combined makes this moment the perfect jump scare, and the perfect way to traumatize a child such as myself. Everything about it contrasts with what Sesame Street is supposed to be, which is colorful and friendly.

Add the fact that it can come up at any moment when you least expect it, and you have a jump scare that puts ever screamer video on the internet to shame. And in fact, this is worse that a screamer video. Those things are usually relegated to adults. This is for young children who are easily frightened by anything.

But who knows? Maybe this scared me and only me. Maybe other children weren’t scared by it, but as for me, it will always be my top scariest nostalgic scare, and it will always make the days on the street less than sunny.

How scary is it? Like watching a 12-hour marathon of nothing but screamer videos!

Nightly Frights: Jeff The Killer

All Hallow's Eve is finally upon us, and for this most hallowed of eves, I haved saved the creepiest of all creepypastas for last.

What creepypasta collection would be complete without the grand-daddy of them all?

Yes, tonight I will be sharing the tragic tale of Jeff, a boy who, through an unfortunate series of events, devolves and deforms, both physically and mentally, into a psychotic killer that would make Heath Ledger's Joker crap his pants in fright.

After weeks of unexplained murders, the ominous unknown killer is still on the rise. After little evidence has been found, a young boy states that he survived one of the killer's attacks and bravely tells his story.

"I had a bad dream and I woke up in the middle of the night," says the boy, "I saw that for some reason the window was open, even though I remember it being closed before I went to bed. I got up and shut it once more. Afterwards, I simply crawled under my covers and tried to get back to sleep. That's when I had a strange feeling, like someone was watching me. I looked up, and nearly jumped out of my bed. There, in the little ray of light, illuminating from between my curtains, were a pair of two eyes. These weren't regular eyes; they were dark, ominous eyes. They were bordered in black and... just plain out terrified me. That's when I saw his mouth. A long, horrendous smile that made every hair on my body stand up. The figure stood there, watching me. Finally, after what seemed like forever, he said it. A simple phrase, but said in a way only a mad man could speak.

"He said, 'Go To Sleep.' I let out a scream, that's what sent him at me. He pulled up a knife; aiming at my heart. He jumped on top of my bed. I fought him back; I kicked, I punched, I rolled around, trying to knock him off me. That's when my dad busted in. The man threw the knife, it went into my dad's shoulder. The man probably would've finished him off, if one of the neighbors hadn't alerted the police.

"They drove into the parking lot, and ran towards the door. The man turned and ran down the hallway. I heard a smash, like glass breaking. As I came out of my room, I saw the window that was pointing towards the back of my house was broken. I looked out it to see him vanish into the distance. I can tell you one thing, I will never forget that face. Those cold, evil eyes, and that psychotic smile. They will never leave my head."

Police are still on the look for this man. If you see anyone that fits the description in this story, please contact your local police department.
Click here to read the rest...if you dare!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Top 13 Even More Disturbing MLP:FiM Fan Works (#3)

What’s more disturbing that Rarity harming herself? Rarity harming others!

#3: Sadistic Rarity

Sadistic Rarity is a Tumblr comic like Little Miss Rarity. Unlike Little Miss Rarity, who seeks pleasure from harming herself, Sadistic Rarity seeks pleasure from harming others.

Actually, it isn’t so much pleasure that she derives from pain and suffering as it is indifferent loathing.

As her name implies, Sadistic Rarity is, well, a sadist, someone who enjoys inflicting pain on others. But while pain is a sexual fetish for Little Miss Rarity, to Sadistic Rarity, it’s a way to sate her hatred for all ponydom.

You see, being a highly-cultured pony among the uncultured hoi polloi, or as she calls them, “fashion sodomites”, has caused this Rarity to become quite the misanthrope—or rather, mis-equine.

Being that way can be quite wearisome to a point, so much so that she has since depleted all of her generosity and now feels nothing but contempt for her fellow ponies, to the point where she has not choice but to maim and murder them.

You can tell when she’s feeling especially vengeful by her eyes, which glow red and bleed when she has a thirst for vengeance. When they glow blue, she’s still vengeful, but not as much. One of her eyes no longer work, to the point where it has since been replaced by a crystal monocle (which also glows red when she’s feeling maimy-killy).

As for a body count, she doesn’t really appear to kill anyone in the comics. The closest we come to a victim is a diamond dog that she maims and carves the word “hate” on its forehead. (And which she kills off-screen).

Speaking of comics, there doesn’t seem to be that many of them, as the old Tumblr blog had been deleted (though a new one was recently created). So I can’t really tell if she ever did kill anyone onscreen.

But I would submit that we don’t need to see her kill anyone in order to be disturbed. Sometimes the most disturbing moments come from those we don’t see. For example, Pinkamena is only shown torturing and killing Rainbow Dash in Cupcakes, but is implied that she has been doing this to innumerable other ponies before. The fact she has gotten away with so many murders is what makes her character especially disturbing, and it’s what makes Sadistic Rarity all the more so.

And while both Pinkamena and Little Miss Rarity inflict pain for the sake of euphoric joy, Sadistic Rarity does so for the sake of pure vengeance, just like Big Macintosh in Sweet Apple Massacre.
Hell hath no fury like a filly scorned, and there is no fury more scorned than the ever Sadistic Rarity.

Oh, and her sister Sweetie Belle is also following in her footsteps as Meanie Belle. Thought I would throw that out there.

How disturbing is it? As disturbing as that one lonely, creepy co-worker in your office, the one that everyone avoids and the one you know is capable of snapping and going on a shooting spree, so you befriend him so he spares you when he does snap.

Nightly Frights: Thriller (Plus Hint For My Top Scariest Moment!)

What Halloween would be complete without Michael Jackson's "Thriller"? It's like having Christmas without A Christmas Carol!

But for this Halloween, I'm sharing a different music video.

For all this month, I've been sharing my top scariest nostalgic moments, and I wanted to give you all a hint of where my top scariest nostalgic moment came from before sharing it tomorrow.

I'm convinced that the scariest moments in our childhood come from the most innocent and innocuous of places, and as far as children's entertainment goes, there is one television show that is the most innocent and innocuous of them all:

What Are Your Scariest Nostalgic Moments?

All this month, I’ve been sharing with you my top scariest nostalgic moments, with my top scariest moment to be posted tomorrow on Halloween.

Now I want to ask you all about your scariest nostalgic moments. What moments in movies, television, video games, or what have you made you piss your pants in terror as a kid?

And as a bonus question, can you guess what my scariest nostalgic moment was? I’ll be posting a hint with today’s Nightly Fright.

Leave you answers in the comments below!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

My Top 13 Scariest Nostalgic Moments (HM)

Honorable Mention: War of the Worlds (2005)

This movie was released around the same time I was starting college, so it’s hardly a childhood moment for me; but since it was a terrifying moment, I’ve decided to include it as an honorable mention.

War of the Worlds needs no introduction. This novel started the entire alien invasion subgenre in science fiction, and as such, its plot is familiar to even those who haven’t read it: Martians invade earth and lay waste to it with their advanced alien technology in order to take over the world. (“Of Course!”) All hope seems lost for the human race when the alien invaders are suddenly defeated, not by human might, but rather by germs. Although the alien invaders were more than a match against our technology and military forces, they were no match against our germs that their bodies had absolutely no immunity to.

Aside from inspiring every single alien invasion movie ever created, this novel has been adapted into film and other media, from radio dramas to video games and even a rock opera. Most of these adaptations had absolutely no effect on me. The original novel? Never scared me. The 1953 movie? Never scared me. Even the infamous 1938 radio broadcast that generated mass hysteria by fooling listeners into thinking that a real alien invasion was taking place? Never scared me.

But then came the 2005 Steven Spielberg movie. That scared me!

Even after having been familiarized and desensitized to the story through its previous adaptations, this recent movie adaptation managed to give me goosebumps. How did it manage to do that? I think there are a few reasons.

For starters, I saw this movie when it came out in theaters. It’s one thing to watch a scary movie in the safety of your own home, even if it’s at night with all the lights off and your comforter draped over you, but watching a movie in a dark, open theater with blaring surround sound makes you feel much more vulnerable.

This movie adaptation was also set in the present; whereas, previous adaptations were set in the past. The original novel was set in Victorian England. The radio drama was set in the 1930s. The original movie was set in the 1950s. With each of those adaptations set in the past, the action seems distant to the audience, and as such, it’s harder for you to become enveloped with it when you know it all happened long ago; but when the action is set in the present, it gives you that unsettling feeling that something like this could actually happen--even if you know in the back of your mind that aliens don't actually exist.

The special effects are perhaps the most unsettling aspect of this adaptation. Pervious adaptations were created when special effects were limited, and as such, they come across as campy by today’s standards. But since then, computer technology has improved, and with it, special effects. As such, the special effects in this movie seem far more realistic, making the film more frightening realistic, and by extension, darker.

Consider the death rays. In the 1950s movie, the rays just made people disappear in flashes of green light. Nothing remotely scary about that. The rays in this film, however, disintegrate people into dust. That’s freaking terrifying! So detailed are the special effects that you manage to see the horrified expressions of the victims even as they’re being reduced to dust. If that wasn’t unsettling enough, the protagonist makes it home after nearly escaping the aliens’ first attack, discovering that he’s covered in the dust—dust that was once living, breathing human beings. That is traumatizing!

Another haunting movie element is the sound the tripods emit. Whenever you hear their wailing horn, you know that death and destruction is coming soon. (And it didn't exactly help my case that the sound reverberated within the spacious theater from its surround sound system!)

But do you know what the most disturbing aspect of this movie is? It was released only four years after the September 11 terrorist attacks, one of the worst attacks on American soil. To explain how much of an impact that has on this movie, when the original 1953 movie was slated for an anniversary DVD release in 2003, it was delayed because distributors felt releasing a movie about massive catastrophe in the wake of a massive catastrophe would be in bad taste. But even after four years since that attack, this movie managed to reignite post 9/11 fears, as many reviewers noticed how the fear and uncertainty of the characters in the movie reflected the fear and uncertainty that many Americans still felt in the wake of 9/11. Although the screenwriters claimed they never intentionally meant to draw parallels between the movie and terrorist attacks, director Steven Spielberg admitted that the characters reflected his own uncertainty following the terrorist attacks, and wanted to focus on their drive for survival in the movie. So having this movie released in the wake of a traumatic experience in American history makes this movie all the more traumatizing.

Though with all of that aside, the only thing in this movie that never really troubled me were the aliens. I can never understand how a movie so traumatizing for me could have the most stereotypical aliens in them. Most other adaptations go out of their way to make the aliens look as otherworldly as possibly, but in this movie, they appear no differently than your other generic movie aliens.

Overall, of all the adaptations of H.G. Wells classic sci-fi epic, this one was by far the one that made me second-guess the idea that aliens could invade earth.

And if you’re curious about what I thought of the other two film adaptations that came out that same year...

Bwahahahahaha! No, just no!

Nightly Frights: Candle Cove

Since I am discussing my scary childhood moments all this month, I'd figure I'd share a creepypasta about creepy childhood moments, specifically the infamous Candle Cove.

This is a "forum discussion" about an old 1970s children's show called Candle Cove, which had some creepy moments like a skeleton character called the Skin Taker and an entire episode where the characters did nothing but scream. (Well, not all of the characters. The human girl was crying!)

But as this discussion continues, it reveals that there may have been something much more sinister about the show.

NetNostalgia Forum – Television (local)

 Subject: Candle Cove local kid’s show?
 Does anyone remember this kid’s show? It was called Candle Cove and I must have been 6 or 7. I never found reference to it anywhere so I think it was on a local station around 1971 or 1972. I lived in Ironton at the time. I don’t remember which station, but I do remember it was on at a weird time, like 4:00 PM.

 Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?
 it seems really familiar to me…..i grew up outside of ashland and was 9 yrs old in 72. candle cove…was it about pirates? i remember a pirate marionete at the mouth of a cave talking to a little girl

 Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?
 YES! Okay I’m not crazy! I remember Pirate Percy. I was always kind of scared of him. He looked like he was built from parts of other dolls, real low-budget. His head was an old porcelain baby doll, looked like an antique that didn’t belong on the body. I don’t remember what station this was! I don’t think it was WTSF though.

 Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?
 Sorry to ressurect this old thread but I know exactly what show you mean, Skyshale. I think Candle Cove ran for only a couple months in ’71, not ’72. I was 12 and I watched it a few times with my brother. It was channel 58, whatever station that was. My mom would let me switch to it after the news. Let me see what I remember.
It took place in Candle cove, and it was about a little girl who imagined herself to be friends with pirates. The pirate ship was called the Laughingstock, and Pirate Percy wasn’t a very good pirate because he got scared too easily. And there was calliope music constantly playing. Don’t remember the girl’s name. Janice or Jade or something. Think it was Janice.

 Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?
 Thank you Jaren!!! Memories flooded back when you mentioned the Laughingstock and channel 58. I remember the bow of the ship was a wooden smiling face, with the lower jaw submerged. It looked like it was swallowing the sea and it had that awful Ed Wynn voice and laugh. I especially remember how jarring it was when they switched from the wooden/plastic model, to the foam puppet version of the head that talked.

 Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?
 ha ha i remember now too. ;) do you remember this part skyshale: “you have…to go…INSIDE.”

 Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?
 Ugh mike, I got a chill reading that. Yes I remember. That’s what the ship always told Percy when there was a spooky place he had to go in, like a cave or a dark room where the treasure was. And the camera would push in on Laughingstock’s face with each pause. YOU HAVE… TO GO… INSIDE. With his two eyes askew and that flopping foam jaw and the fishing line that opened and closed it. Ugh. It just looked so cheap and awful.
You guys remember the villain? He had a face that was just a handlebar mustache above really tall, narrow teeth.

 Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?
 i honestly, honestly thought the villain was pirate percy. i was about 5 when this show was on. nightmare fuel.

 Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?
 That wasn’t the villain, the puppet with the mustache. That was the villain’s sidekick, Horace Horrible. He had a monocle too, but it was on top of the mustache. I used to think that meant he had only one eye.
But yeah, the villain was another marionette. The Skin-Taker. I can’t believe what they let us watch back then.

 Subject: Re: Candle Cove local kid’s show?
 jesus h. christ, the skin taker. what kind of a kids show were we watching? i seriously could not look at the screen when the skin taker showed up. he just descended out of nowhere on his strings, just a dirty skeleton wearing that brown top hat and cape. and his glass eyes that were too big for his skull. christ almighty.
Click here to read the rest--if you dare!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Nightly Frights: The Haunted Mansion

Oh yes! For this entry, we'll be taking a tour of Disney's famous mansion that houses 999 spirited haunts--but there is room for a thousand! Any volunteers?

I was creeped out by this ride as a kid, but now that I'm older, it's one of my favorite rides. How can it not be? It's one of the most beloved Disney rides. The fact that it still gives people frights to this day really shows how timeless it is, even if a few modern revisions have since been added.

And just as a bit of haunted trivia, there's a rumor that you commit suicide while on the ride.

How so?

Well, if you've ever ridden the ride, you know that as you progress through the mansion, you make your way up to the attic where you encounter the ghost bride. The very next scene is the graveyard.

Which is outside. And on ground level.

How did you get all the way down there?

If you remember, your doom buggy turns back and you float down there.

Or did you actually fall?

And why does the groundskeeper and his dog look so scared when you meet them? It's as if they've seen a ghost!

Well, have they?

Have you become that thousandth ghost to join the haunted mansion?

Have fun trying to sleep tonight!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

My Top 13 Scariest Nostalgic Moments (#2)

Despite being called the Happiest Place on Earth, Walt Disney World has its fair share of traumatizing moments.

If I were to tell you that the next item on this list was a Disney attraction, you’d probably guess it was the Haunted Mansion.

While that ride did creep me out as a kid, it has since grown on me and it’s now one of my favorite rides.

So what could possibly be the scary ride in question?

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror?

That ride did scare me, but to the point where I haven’t ridden it up until recently.

Snow White’s Scary Adventure?

I can see why other children were scared by it, but it never scared me, partly because by then I had seen the movie and knew the scary moments from it.

So what Disney ride scared me as a kid?

#10: Honey, I Shrunk The Audience!

In the early 90s, Disney released a live-action movie called Honey, I Shrunk The Kids about a mad-scientist father who creates a shrinking ray that, as the title implies, accidently shrinks his children. Hijinks ensue as the kids are forced to scale their backyard and brave giant insects in order to get back to their house and return to their normal size.

This blockbuster was a huge success and ended up spawning two sequels (Honey, I Blew Up The Baby and Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves), a television series, and, as you can guess, a 3D Movie at Walt Disney World. I was around seven when I rode this attraction. I thought it was going to be a whimsical adventure, but for me, it turned out to be a life-scarring nightmare.

The premise of the attraction is that the audience is attending an awards ceremony in honor of the scientist father for his inventions, including his shrinking ray, which, as the title suggests, ends up shrinking the audience, who are nearly eaten by a snake, stepped on by a baby, and sneezed on by a dog.

But before the audience is shrunk, the father demonstrates another invention of his: a cloning machine. He uses his son’s pet rat in order to test it, and before you can say “what can possibly go wrong?”, the machine ends ups malfunctioning and unleashing a plague of rats into the audience—literally!

Around this time, the lights go out. You’re enveloped in complete darkness. The sound of chattering rats surround you. Underneath your chairs are little tubes that blow puffs of air, making it feel as though rats are crawling along your legs.

I kid you not: when this happened, I leapt straight out of my seat screaming into my mother’s lap where I remained until the end of the movie.

This was a moment that came out of nowhere for me. I wasn’t expecting anything like that to happen. What made this worse, other than the puffing air, is that it happens in the dark, and as anyone will tell you, children are terrified of the dark. It’s a vulnerable moment for a little kid, and the crawling rats hardly make it any better.

The good news for me is that this ride has since been replaced by the Captain EO ride, and to my knowledge, that ride doesn’t have a similar moment. Good news for me, and for any other kid who would otherwise be traumatized by that.

Nightly Frights: Old Woman All Skin And Bone

For this selection from Scary Stories, we'll look at a song rather than a story.

This one is about a woman who lives near a churchyard and discovers something rather nasty waiting at the church steps.

There was an old woman all skin and bone
Who lived near the graveyard all alone.

She thought she'd go to church one day
To hear the parson preach and pray.

And when she came to the church-house stile
She thought she stop and rest awhile.

She came up to the door
She thought she'd stop and rest some more.

But when she turned and looked around
She saw a corpse upon the ground.

From its nose down to its chin
The worms crawled out, and the worms crawled in.

The woman to the preacher said,
"Shall I look like that when I am dead?"

The preacher to the woman said,
'You shall look like that when you are dead!"

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Even More Disturbing MLP List Postponed!

If you're wondering where my latest post for my Top 13 Even More Disturbing MLP:FiM Fan Works list is, it's not here.

Due to a hectic work schedule, I'm going to have to postpone this list until later. Rest assured, the rest of Blame The Fright! month will commence as scheduled, so I'm still going to have my Top 13 Nostalgic Moments list and Nightly Frights.

In real life, I've been swamped all this month with work assignments, and I have a very important one due by the end of the month. So when push comes to shove, I'm going to have to focus my energy on work over my blog. After all, it's all about the money, money, money!

Sorry if I disappoint anyone because of this, but hopefully, you all are understanding. (Please don't unwatch! Kidding. I know you all won't, right? Eh, right?)

Nightly Frights: Woman Births To Octopus

What could be more frightening than an unplanned pregnancy? How about getting impregnated by something other than a human being? Like getting impregnated by an octopus?

Yes, it's another urban legend from Snopes, and this time, it's the urban legend about a teenage girl that swallowed an octopus egg that birthed into a full grown baby octopus in her stomach.

Of course, as Snopes points out, this is all unscientific garbage, but it is still a frightening thought, especially if you're female. Might want to be careful swallowing ocean water, there, ladies.
This teen age girl, growing up in a California coastal town, was obviously pregnant – stomach starting to swell, morning sickness, etc. She, however, tearfully insisted to her mother that she couldn’t possibly be pregnant. She had never “done it” with a boy and it just wasn’t possible.

As time went on, however, the signs continued. Her stomach continued to grow, her appetite increased, and so forth. Her mother insisted she was pregnant. The family doctor insisted she was pregnant. The girl insisted it wasn’t possible. She was still a “good” girl.

Finally x-rays were taken and the girl was vindicated. She had a large tumor in her stomach and surgery was performed immediately. To everyone’s amazement the surgeons removed, not a tumor, but a small, live octopus that had fastened itself to the lining of the girl’s stomach.

What happened to this girl supposedly is really possible. Octopus eggs are microscopic in size and laid in clusters of tens of thousands. They are usually affixed to kelp at the ocean bottom by a sticky secretion. It is not beyond the realm of possibility that a few could escape and float to the surface where they could be swallowed by an unsuspecting swimmer…. Anyway, don’t scoff, because the girl was a close friend of my older brother’s girlfriend.

Friday, October 25, 2013

MLP Villains: King Sombra

And now we come to the final installment in our MLP Villains collections this month. And I've saved the least for last: the weakest, yet creepiest, villain in the series, King Sombra.

Once the tyrannical monarch of the legendary Crystal Empire, King Sombra was banished into shadow for a thousand years, but sadly, so was his kingdom and the innocent denizens thereof. After the Empire returned, so nearly did Sombra until Twilight Sparkle and her friends restored light to the Crystal Heart, and with it, vanquished Sombra forever. Question is: has he truly been defeated for good?

Here are some fan art of the crystal-loving monarch of darkness:

MLP Villains - King Sombra by *sandara on deviantART

And here we have the final villan in the realistic villans series. Funny how we forget that Sombra is a horse when he looks more like a lion.

King Sombra by ~Virus-91 on deviantART

Imma shoot you with mah purple lazahs! But seriously, those teeth really, really creep me out!

King Sombra by ~DragonwolfRooke on deviantART

The dripping dark ink is very fitting with his dark nature. Very creepy!

King Sombra Silhouette Wall by ~SpaceKitty on deviantART

As hard has crystal. As cold as ice. That is the heart of King Sombra. Love the Silhouette style!

MLP - King Sombra by *Huussii on deviantART

The art style here reminds me of Zelda: Twilight Princess, especially with how the dark shadows contrast with the golden sunset.

King Sombra by ~cmaggot on deviantART

Dark shadows. Glowing eyes. Highlighted against a purple tundra. This is how you set the scene for fear.

King Sombra's Revenge by *Ghostwalker2061 on deviantART

I'm not sure who Neltharion is or why King Sombra is seeking revenge against him, but this fight with lightning and hellfire is teh epic!

A Fallen King (King Sombra) by ~randomsketchman on deviantART

Can we really call it a victory against evil when the innocent still perish because of it?

MLP - King Sombra by *Huussii on deviantART

This human version reminds me of Demise's final form in Zelda: Skyward Sword. Very fitting!

King Sombra by ~turbopower1000 on deviantART

Enjoy your kingdom, Sombra, for it shall not last for long.

king Sombra my version by *mauroz on deviantART

And this human form reminds me of No Heart from Kingdom Heart: Birth By Sleep.

DFA's- MLP- Return of the Tyrant King Sombra by *LycanthropeHeart on deviantART

Why oh why were we denied the epic battle between Sombra and Shining Armor. Hasbro, you dissapoint!

King Sombra and Wishy Washy by ~Hiroshi-Tea on deviantART

Ah, it pays to be the king!

King Sombra by ~true-artist-mas on deviantART

He's so strong, he creates black shards smashing through nothing.

Nightly Frights: Squidward's Suicide

Hey guys! Did you know there was a lost episode of Spongebob Squarepants? No, I'm not talking about the official "lost" episode. I'm talking about a real "lost" episode.

This one was discovered by a Nickelodeon intern who claimed the short was too scary and graphic to air. How dark was it? Well, it involved Squidward committing suicide.

Okay, so it's not a real episode. It's really a creepypasta, one with a video. Feel free to watch it, if you dare!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

My Top 13 Scariest Nostalgic Moments (#3)

In the 1970s, there was a Christian music company called Maranatha Music which specialized in contemporary Christian music. The company later started its own children's division called Maranatha Kids. If you grew up in Sunday School like I did, chances are you probably sang along to their music or watched their sing-along videos.

One of their most popular franchises was Psalty the Singing Songbook, who was the Christian version of Barney the Dinosaur, only he was a talking hymnbook instead of a talking dinosaur. (Not sure if that's less creepy!) Psalty had a dozen or so videos released, and I remember watching at least two of them. These videos all seems corny now, but back then, as a kid, they were relatively fun to watch.

Psalty also had a spin-off character named Colby, who was a talking computer programmed to create Christian music. His franchise wasn't as popular as Psalty's, as he only had a handful of videos released, though he did have a television show that ran on the Trinity Broadcast Network in the 90s.

Colby was first introduced in Colby's Missing Memory. The video involves a bunch of neighborhood children who are building a clubhouse when they decide to invite their new friend over. And of course, their new friend is Colby! An accident occurs that causes Colby to have his memory erased, and the other kids try to help him get it back--all the kids, that is, except Nick.

Nick is your stereotypical tough kid who doesn't like Colby because he's a robot. The other kids chastise him for his prejudice, telling him he shouldn't dislike Colby merely for being different. (Enter subtle racism message here.) They try to convince Nick to empathize with Colby by asking him to imagine how he would feel if he were the only human in a world full of robots. But like your average politician, Nick is incapable of feeling any empathy.

The other kids leave for lunch while Nick decides to stay behind and look after Colby. He soon falls asleep, and like every other contrived story, he has a dream directly related to the plot.

And oh boy did this nightmare give me nightmare fuel.

#3: Robot Nightmare from Colby's Missing Memory

Nick wakes up in a place similar to the backyard, only dark, hazy, smoke-filled, and--oh yeah--inhabited by metallic paint-wearing children.

These robots chase Nick around, singing in shrill, mechanical voices about how they want to make him a robot just like them because, apparently, he had signed a contract agreeing to be a robot because he doesn't have feelings for Colby.

If that weren't creepy enough, the song and scene end with the robot children ganging up on Nick and forcing him onto a bench, where we briefly get a first-person perspective of the robots waving their hands over him while making mechanical noises. While we don't know for sure what these robots are doing, we can only assume through the song and Nick's protests of that they're turning him into a robot.

So, wait! We have a human being in a world of machines bent on enslaving humanity and making them part of their collective. Does that make Nick this world's Neo?

But seriously, this scene freaked me out as a kid. The scene comes out of nowhere and clashes with the rest of the movie, which otherwise happens in a bright and colorful environment. It's a dark song in a dark setting with even darker implications. The idea of a bunch of robots transforming a being, especially a defenseless child, into a robot really gave me the creeps, to the point where I refused to watch the video anymore. Oh sure, I would still watch it, but I dreaded watching this nightmare-fuel inducing nightmare scene.

But watching this as an adult, I have to say that the robot children's acting is less robotic than that of the human children.

How scary is it? About as scary as a computer virus that tricks you into thinking the FBI is tracking you!

Yeah, this actually happened to me once. Scary!

Nightly Frights: Krillin Plays Slender

What could be scarier than playing slender? How about watching a cowardly bald Z Warrior play it?

Okay, so perhaps that wouldn’t be scarier, but it is hella entertaining!

Here’s the first video in the series:

You can watch the other parts on Team Four Stars's let's play channel, Two Saiyans Play.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

WTF Is Wrong With Vox Day?

I’ve discussed the “libertarian” blogger Vox Day many, many, many times before. So you should already know who he is.

And you should know he would say something as deplorable as this about Malala Yousafzai:
[I]n light of the strong correlation between female education and demographic decline, a purely empirical perspective on Malala Yousafzai, the poster girl for global female education, may indicate that the Taliban's attempt to silence her was perfectly rational and scientifically justifiable.
You heard that right: Vox just justified the Taliban planting a bullet through Yousafzai’s brain for daring to receive an education!

I would say this is the lowest Vox can sink, but sadly, this is not the first time this “Christian” blogger has sided with the Taliban. (The irony! It burns!)

Can Vox please stop calling himself a “libertarian” and start calling himself what he really is: a patriarchal theocrat!

Top 13 Even More Disturbing MLP:FiM Fan Works (#4)

In both of my lists, we’ve seen the dark and disturbing side of each of the Mane Six. We’ve seen Rainbow Dash oversee genocide, Fluttershy chainsaw Dash in half, Applejack roll around in the hay with her big brother, Twilight Sparkle off Cadence in order to marry her own brother, and of course, let’s not forget Pinkie Pie cutting up her friends into cupcakes.

Of all the demented ponies, none have come close to being as creepy as Pinkie Pie, or rather, Pinkamena Diane Pie. But one pony has come fairly close, and it just so happens to be the last member of the Mane Six—and ironically enough, she’s going to be featured in the next three entries.

But before we move onto those two, let’s focus on her most infamous persona: Little Miss Rarity.

#4: Little Miss Rarity

This comic takes place in the same universe as Cupcakes. A slew of murders have occurred in Ponyville, and every pony is wrought with fear about becoming the next target. Of course, the murderer involved is Pinkamena, who broadcasts her killings on her Tumblr account. (And yet nobody thinks about turning her in!)

Rarity herself has become the most paranoid, to the point of locking herself in her boutique for days on end. As one can imagine, confining oneself indoors for that long can wear away at one’s sanity. Being pent up with that much paranoia can cause one to snap at any moment, and for Rarity, that moment comes when her cat, Opalscene, scratches her face, leaving a deep scar along her left eye.

Normally, such a small injury would cause mild annoyance with the pet owner, but for Rarity, this slight pains engulfs her in absolute euphoria, as the wound, rather than causing her pain, gives her sadomasochistic pleasure. Soon she becomes obsessed with inflicting self-harm and starts fantasizing about others inflicting pain on her, especially Pinkamena.

How obsessed does Rarity become with Pinkamena? To the point where she makes a doll of her—out of her own cat!

Rarity starts disfiguring herself in various ways, all while getting off on it. She cuts herself, brands herself, and even goes so far as to stick a knife in a place where the sun doesn’t shine. (I’ll let you guess where.)

So enamored does she become in the act of self-harm that she wishes to share that experience with others, including her little sister, Sweetie Belle. That’s right, Rarity goes so far as to gag and blindfold her own sister and cut into her young, supple flesh…

…that is until Twilight comes over and interrupts the act, only to have a sewing machine chucked at her head. (Considering that Twilight has survived the entire contents of a moving van being dumped onto her head, we can only assume this is the least pain she has ever been in).

She continues delving deeper into her devious deviation until one instance of excessive blood loss causes her to suffer shock and be rushed to the hospital. It is there that the creepiest thing happens: she snaps out of it.

And that’s what makes this fanwork especially creepy: for while other ponies remain in their corrupted state, Rarity manages to escape it and regain her sanity.

Creepier still is that the camera she was posing before and conducting all of her erotic adventures, the very camera we the audience have been witnessing her though, turns out to have been all in her head. She was imagining it all along. (Does this mean she was imagining us?)

So unlike other sociopaths like Pinkamena, who either give into their insanity, or consciously carried out their violence through their own volition, deep inside was the real Rarity all along.

One moment, she was the posh Rarity that we all know and love, and the next moment, she was the sexually-deviant self-harmer with a lust for both blood and more lust. Its creepy because it exposes how one person can go from being a normal human being into a raging psychopath.

This fan work is reminiscent of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, where a mild-mannered individual have their personality completely altered. It's scary because it shows how easy it is for one person to shift from normal to insane.

And yes, I know the comic continues on, and she eventually caves into her deviant nature again, but considering how far the comic goes, well...

...I've think I've discussed enough!

How disturbing is it? As disturbing as trying to stick a knife up your rear end.

Why Is Alan Greenspan Not In Jail?!?!

Gawker summarizes Greenspan's fail of a career in his own words:
Alan Greenspan, 2004: "American consumers might benefit if lenders provided greater mortgage product alternatives to the traditional fixed-rate mortgage."
Alan Greenspan, 2005: "Although a 'bubble' in home prices for the nation as a whole does not appear likely, there do appear to be, at a minimum, signs of froth in some local markets."
Alan Greenspan, 2005: "The resolution of our current account deficit and household debt burdens does not strike me as overly worrisome."
[Housing bubble pops and everything goes to hell]
Alan Greenspan, 2008: "“I still do not fully understand why it happened.”
Alan Greenspan, 2013: “In a sense, we are actually at relatively low stock prices... [the market has] gone up a huge amount, but it’s not bubbly."
He, Ben Bernanke, and Barney Frank deserve to rot in jail for pushing the monetary and fiscal policies that crashed our economy. So why are they walking like free men?

There is no justice in this country!

Nightly Frights: Clinkity-Clink

Another childhood tale of fright from Scary Stories. This one about a gravedigger who steals two silver dollars from the corpse of an old woman, only to be haunted by her spirit later that night.

Once again, it's one of those ghost stories best told to another, with the narrator screaming at the end.

If this story sounds familiar, it should, especially if you're a brony. The My Little Pony episode "Sleepless in Ponyville" featured a similar tale about an old mare with a missing rusty horseshoe.
There was a lonely old woman who got sick and eventually died. She had no family and no close friends, so her neighbors got together and dug a grave for her. They asked the undertaker to make a coffin for her and they dressed her up in her best clothes and laid her body out in her living room.

When the old woman died, her eyes were wide open, staring at everything and seeing nothing. This disturbed the neighbors so much that they found two shiny silver coins on her dresser and put them on her eyelids to keep them closed.

As was the tradition at the time, they held a wake so that people could come by and pay their respects. The neighbors lit some candles and sat up with her corpse so that she would not be alone.
The next morning, the gravedigger arrived to collect her body and take it to the cemetery. When he was about to start digging the grave, he opened the coffin and peered inside. When he saw the silver coins covering her eyes, he immediately snatched them and stuffed them in his pocket.

Looking down at the dead woman, a chill ran down his spine. Her wide open eyes seemed to be staring up at him, watching him as he stole her silver coins. It gave him a creepy feeling, so he grabbed a hammer and quickly nailed the lid on the coffin shut. Then he buried her as fast as he could.

When the gravedigger got home, he put the two silver coins in a tin box and shook it, listening to the rattling sound. Try as he might, he couldn't forget those eyes staring at him. He placed the tin box on his mantelpiece.

That night, it grew dark and the wind started blowing. The storm shook the house and rattled the windows. A cold wind whistled through the cracks in the walls and down the chimney.

Bizzy, bizzy, buzz-zoo-o-o-o-o! it went. Bizzy, bizzy, buzz-zoo-o-o-o-o!

The gravedigger threw some more wood on the fire and jumped into bed, pulling the covers up over his head.

The wind kept blowing through the cracks.

Bizzy, bizzy, buzz-zoo-o-o-o-o! it went. Bizzy, bizzy, buzz-zoo-o-o-o-o!

The fire flared and flickered and cast evil-looking shadows on the walls. Lying in bed, the gravedigger couldn't stop thinking about the dead woman's eyes staring at him. As the wind blew stronger and louder, and the fire popped and snapped, he began to get scared.

Suddenly, he heard another sound.

Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink, it went. Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink.

It was the silver dollars rattling in the tin box.

"Hey!" shouted the gravedigger. "Who's stealing my money?"

But all he heard was the wind blowing, Bizzy, bizzy, buzz-zoo-o-o-o-o! and the flames flaring and flickering, and snapping and popping, and the coins going Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink.

Shaking with fear, he flung off the covers and sat up in bed. Looking around, he couldn't see anything. He leaped out of the bed and barred and chained the door. Then he went back to bed, but his head had barely touched the pillow when he heard, Clinkity-Clink, Clinkity-Clink.
Click here to read the rest, if you dare!

Nostalgia Critic: Should We Scare Kids?

Seeing as how I’m counting down my top nostalgic scares all this month, this recent Nostalgia Critic editorial is quite fitting:

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

My Top 13 Scariest Nostalgic Moments (#4)

If you've never heard of Bedknobs and Broomsticks, I don't blame you. It's one of the lesser known Disney live-action films, overshadowed by more popular ones like Mary Poppins. In fact, this movie was released less than a decade after Mary Poppins and has a plot similar to it.

The movie involves a group of British children being watched over by a nanny with magical powers. (Like I said, exactly similar to Mary Poppins!) The nanny, played by Angela Lansbery, is a witch-in-training who's searching for a magical spell that can bring inanimate objects to life. Using a magical flying bed, she brings the children along on her search for the spell, traveling to exotic locations such as the bottom of the sea and an island of talking animals.

I discovered this movie after seeing one of its songs "The Briny Deep" featured on a Disney Sing-Along Songs video. I begged and pleaded for my parents to get the movie for me, and like all parents, they did. I watched it once, and once was enough. I never watched it again.

Why? For two reasons:

First, the movie was a major disappointment. Having watched the song, I thought this was going to be a movie with live-action actors in a cartoon setting, sort of like Who Framed Roger Rabbit; instead, what I watched was a mostly live-action movie with the animated scenes in the middle--preceded by a slow-moving plot that my three-year-old mind did not comprehend or care for. The entire experience left me bored and uninterested.

And even if I did like the movie, I still wouldn't have wanted to watch it again. Why? Because of one particular scene that terrified me.

#4: Substitutiary Locomotion Scene from Bedknobs & Broomsticks

Near the end of the movie, the children and nanny are locked inside an old castle by a troop of German soldiers who've landed on British soil in an attempt to invade England. Trapped in the museum and surrounded by suits of armor, the nanny gets the idea to bring them to life with her animation spell in order to fight off the invading Germans.

She yells out the magical incantation, which reverberates throughout the empty dark castle halls. Nothing seems to happen, until...

Drums start beating, trumpets start playing, and suits of armors drop their visors and draw their swords. Then, everything starts marching.

Outside the museum, the German soldiers notice something marching over the hill. The captain looks though his binoculars to see...armor.

Lots and lots of armor. All from different time periods. And none with anyone people in them.

To add to the overall creep factor, bagpipes played by disembodied bagpipe players start playing a haunting melody over the entire spectacle.

Disembodied suits of armor are creepy enough, but bagpipes? That's far too creepy to handle!

As a three-year-old, this was the first time I had seen such a special effect like this in a movie. As I said before, when I first watched this, I hadn't been paying attention to the plot. I had no idea what was going on. So when this scene happened, it took me by surprise and shocked the ever living Kool-Aid out of me. My three-year-old mind couldn't comprehend why all this scary-looking armor had come to life, and it didn't help that they were chanting in a spooky language in deep, foreboding voices. It left me cowering under the sofa as a kid and scared me from re-watching it ever again.

Needless to say, this scene no longer scares me as an adult. In fact, I'm quite impressed by how the creators managed to create it with the limited special effects they had in the day, which seems to be mostly green screens and puppetry.

There are many moments that leave me scratching my head as to how they managed to pull it all off. It depresses me to think that, if this movie were made today, the entire scene would have been done with crappy CGI. Scenes like this makes you appreciate all the hard work that went into making it, as opposed to how most other movies are made these days.

And yet, as a scared, little three-year-old, I was too frightened by it to understand it. Just goes to show how fear of the unknown can preventing you for enjoying something you otherwise would have liked.

How scary is it? As scary as walking home at night only to sense someone following you, and when you turn around to look, no one is there.