“Darkness Falls Across the Land”

“The midnight hour is close at hand.” – Vincent Price

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The one and only Vincent Price 1911-1993

Just last week a co-worker of mine showed me the picture above and asked “do you know who this is?”  Do I know who this is.  Child, please.  After I quickly identified the man as one Vincent Price, he asked “how did you know that?”  I knew that mostly because of today’s featured video and song, but Vincent Price wasn’t some one-time novelty wonder. 

He was the definition of horror for a generation, albeit a generation older than mine.  Blessed with an epic, eery voice, Price died in 1993, but not before appearing in over 100 films – many of them in the horror genre, and lending his talents doing voice-over work.  But for those of us that grew up in the 80’s, he may have been best known as the spooky narrator closing out this Michael Jackson classic.

“It’s close to midnight and something evil’s lurking in the dark.” – Michael Jackson

Day late, dollar short.  Isn’t that the saying?  This post was supposed to be pre-Halloween, but the best laid plans, right?

Halloween is my daughter’s favorite holiday.  She’s always loved it.  She loves the weather (cool, but not cold) with the beautiful falling, changing leaves.  She loves an outdoor fire on a chilly night.  She loves strange, mythical creatures, and fog.  She loves to dress up.  And she loves this song.

“You try to scream, but terror takes the sound before you make it.”

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Speaking of terror, I was terrorizing children as a crazy clown-child in the 70’s.  Pretty sure I was the original “Pennywise.”

There’s something about creepy clowns, mutilated zombies, and mythological creatures of the night that many of us like.  Some of us like to be scared.   It’s that rush of adrenaline, that feeling of being alive in the moment that many people love this time of year.  For some, it’s just the opportunity to dress up, to pretend, to be someone they’re not.  Others will be thrilled to provide a laugh for others by looking ridiculous for a day.  For others, it’s just about the candy, and how much they can accumulate going from house to house.

I’ve always dressed up through the years.  When I was young it was about the candy.  Now, it’s just about having a little fun, passing candy out to the neighborhood children, and maybe making someone smile for a moment or two.  It has nothing to do with celebrating a holiday many feel is “the devil’s holiday.”  Many hold to this secular view of the holiday though others will tell you it originated from early Celtic harvest festivals and that the holiday itself was Christianized.

Whatever the case, it’s one night a year that still brings people out within your community that you might not see on a regular basis.  It’s a chance to converse and laugh and connect with others.  It’s an opportunity for church congregations to gather as well for a “harvest festival” or “trunk or treating.”  It’s a holiday that the young and old can celebrate.

doctorwho

Once a killer clown, now I’m just the Doctor

“You know it’s thriller, thriller night.  You’re fighting for your life inside a killer thriller tonight.”

Last year I featured one of my favorite 80’s movies and soundtracks in a piece featuring the vampire classic “The Lost Boys”.  This October/early November, I have to feature the best dancing zombie music video of all time!  It was a music video that broke the classic mold, and forever changed the standards in the music video industry.

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A superstar with dancing zombies… 1983 didn’t get any better!

I don’t get tired of this song.  Mostly because I don’t listen to it much throughout the year, but as Halloween approaches it ends up more and more on my playlist.

The song peaked at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 in early 2013 and was Jackson’s seventh and final top 10 single from the album of the same name.  Strangely, the video actually premiered on MTV in early December of 1983 and not around Halloween when you’d expect it.  Therefore, I don’t feel too bad about posting it here in early November.  Here is the mini-movie/music video directed by John Landis.

I hope you had a great Halloween… and remember no mere mortal can resist the evil of the Thriller.

sincerely,

the 80’s

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