Tag Archives: halloween masks

Munsters Remake Inspired by Burton and Hitchcock, Premieres 10/26

Along with the Halloween masks and costumes, October is rich with great television, and today’s news involves the iconic horror monster family of the 1960s, The Munsters.

Mockingbird Lane, the remake of The Munsters from creator Bryan Fuller (creator of Pushing Daisies), will premiere on NBC on October 26, just in time for Halloween.

But there’s some confusion as to whether this is a stand-alone reboot or the start of a series. According to the Los Angeles Times, the series reboot didn’t make it past the pilot stage, and NBC has been rumored to have already killed the project.

Hollywood Reporter, however, reports that Fuller tweeted news regarding NBC continuing the project.

I suppose we’ll simply have to watch the premiere episode to find out exactly what’s going on with this reboot. Regardless, of the show’s longevity, though, NBC has said that the reboot has a darker edge and tone.

We wanted this to look like if Hitchcock was directed a Harry Potter film, Fuller told Hollywood Reporter, claiming that he was inspired to retell the Munsters story after seeing Tim Burton’s art exhibit in New York.

This is about embracing the freak of your family and being proud, said Fuller, who hopes to incorporate famed monsters from Universal Studio’s horror library.

Here’s the reboot’s trailer:

The episode is currently scheduled to air on October 26 at 8pm Eastern and Pacific times, followed by a Halloween-themed episode of Grimm. We’ll be watching. Will you?

Halloween Candy: A Blessing or a Curse?

Disregarding Halloween masks and costumes for a minute, let’s talk candy:

Kit Kats, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Butterfingers, Skittles, Tootsie Pops, Hershey’s Kisses, Reese’s Pieces, 3 Musketeers, Charleston Chews, York Peppermint Patties, M&M’s (of all bazillion varieties), Snickers, Krackel Bars, Mr. Goodbars, Jolly Rancher Chews, Nestle SweeTarts, Nerds, Blow Pops, Nestle Crunch, Twizzlers, Twix, Whoppers, WarHeads, 100 Grand Bars, Baby Ruths, Pop Rocks, Junior Mints, Dots, Mike & Ikes, Starburst, Sour Patch Kids, Swedish Fish, Jelly Belly Beans (again, of all bazillion flavors), Ring Pops, Fun Dip, PayDays, Heath Bars, Milk Duds, Almond Joys, Cow Tales, Raisinets

No theater visit goes without one bag of these delicious morsels. And every friggin’ time I tell myself, “Eat them during the movie, not before.” Never happens.

The list goes on and on, and I’d bet that most readers know of or have eaten every single one of those candies. Hell, for many Halloween enthusiasts, wearing costumes and masks are only a means of receiving or handing out candy. These sweet morsels are the center in which all of the holiday’s activities revolve around, but there are many groups and organizations that feel this center on sugar is doing more harm than good. They have no problem with the masks or costumes, but this idea that candy must be essential for Halloween, they believe, should be changed.

As an example, a dental group in Illinois is trying to encourage kids to stop eating Halloween candy by offering money in exchange for unopened candy. In fact, they are paying as much as a buck a pound for unopened candy. All of this candy will then be shipped to the men and women serving our country overseas. Never mind the odd lesson being taught to children  e.g. that it’s okay for adults to eat candy, as long as they are serving their country  this kind of initiative is only one of many that hope to make Halloween a healthier holiday.

Be wary of the house handing out brownies. You may end up having a really, really good night.

Even the United States government has been pushing Halloween health tips that target the holiday’s consumption of candy. The most recent push came on October 6, in a press release that started, The really scary thing about Halloween can be the amount of candy that children get to eat.

The press release then lists tips to ensure a safe and healthy Halloween for kids, which range from parents being the candy-hating role model by moderating their own intake of sweets, to trading a toy or allowance for a child’s candy. The former example could work, maybe, while the latter gives the child a twisted incentive for collecting candy and using it as a trade item for something else with equivalently perceived value. Wouldn’t this then reinforce a child’s belief that candy is valuable? Very odd.

The last tip this press release gives is one that this writer as a child hated more than anything: Think about giving out non-food treats such as stickers, toys, temporary tattoos, bubbles, small games or colored pencils. If you prefer to give out candy, choose bite-sized ones and hand out dark chocolate (it has antioxidants) or hard candy (it takes longer to eat).

Any love for Abba Zaba?

Look, I understand trying to re-imagine the idea of Halloween and its obsession with candy, but if the best thing you have to replace candy with is bubbles, then you have to try a bit harder. That’s like saying you don’t agree with giving gifts on Christmas, instead handing out high-fives and positive one-liners like You’re the man or Did you lose weight?

It’s nice, I guess, but in the end you’re just an asshole.

Seattles Underground

Take a break from shopping for Halloween masks and learn something interesting!

When Seattle was originally built in the late 1800s, every building was made from wood. Obviously, this made the whole city one large fire hazard. In 1889, a cabinetmaker accidentally ignited his glue pot. Nowadays, this would be a small, contained fire that would be quickly put out; however, combined with the absence of the citys fire chief, this tiny fire managed to set 25 city blocks on fire.

A picture of the Seattle fire in 1889.

The Seattle officials decided to rebuild using stone and mortar, so they never again had to fear of burning down their whole city. Oddly, though, they also decided to elevate the city. Rather than building on ground level, they lifted the city two stories using concrete walls and ceilings. This process is known as regrading.

To regrade the city, Seattles original streets were filled with concrete alleyways. Once the alleyways were complete, various materials were washed into the alleyways, acting as the new ground level support.

Seattle Underground
This is one of the many underground buildings still standing. The photo shows the front of the building, with the old street running in front of it.

Since the second or third floor was going to be the new first floor, landlords and storeowners stopped decorating their lower floors, leaving them barren and lifeless. However, not everyone immediately moved up from the old ground level to the new one. Countless pedestrians and storeowners continued to do business in the old underground of Seattle. Various slits and glass cubes in the floor of the new ground level let sunlight into the lower levels. If you travel to downtown Seattle today, you can still find some of these slits and glass cubes in the ground.

In 1907, Seattle condemned the underground level out of fear of a pneumonic plague. All of the buildings underground were left to deteriorate, with very few of them being used as storage. Typical to human society, some of the abandoned buildings were used as illegal gambling halls, opium dens, and speakeasies.

Seattle Underground
The concrete floor on the right used to be at the same level as the wooden platform on the left. Overtime, the sawdust landfill supporting the concrete floor has sank.

Today, there are some companies who offer tours into the abandoned underground of Seattle, where very few buildings remain. If you have been aching to see find yourself deep in the underground heart of a thriving city, Seattle is your best opinion.

Man Consumed By Bugs and Other Creepy Crawlies

Some people collect Halloween masks. Some people collect trading cards. Some people collect toy trains. Mark Voegel, 30, however, collected spiders, snakes, termites, reptiles, and loads of other nasty creatures. He was said to have more than 200 of these various critters contained in his Dortmund, Germany, apartment, including a black widow spider.

Unfortunately, in 2004, this specific black widow spider, which Mark named Bettina, was believed to be the culprit who dealt the deathblow to Mark. One bite and Mark swelled up like an unripe melon and he passed away in his apartment, alone.

black widow spider
A typical black widow spider.

Normally, when someone suddenly disappears for days and days, someone is bound to notice. But Mark Voegel never let anyone visit his apartment. He was dead for somewhere between seven to fourteen days before investigators received a complaint about the smell emanating from Marks apartment. When the investigators arrived, they described his apartment as a zoo and a jungle.

Somewhere during the days when Marks corpse lay in his apartment, the heating systems for his creatures tanks exploded, releasing hundreds of these creepy crawlies. Since there was no one there to feed them, they had to make due with what was available – Mark Voegels corpse, being the main source of nutrition.

A police officer on the scene said, It was like a horror movie. His corpse was over the sofa. Giant webs draped him, spiders were all over him. They were coming out of his nose and his mouth. There was everything there one could imagine in the world of reptiles. Larger pieces of flesh torn off by the lizards were scooped up and taken back to the webs of tarantulas and other bird-eating spiders.

Mark Voegel was consumed by his hobbies, literally.