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The Hudsucker is an online magazine made up of unique and dedicated writers with fresh voices from across the country and overseas. Our team of writers are passionate and driven, bringing forth their personalities in each article. Since its inception in 2012, The Hudsucker has continuously proven how writing is our strongest fingerprint. By creating a smart and ambitious environment for readers, the digital magazine focusing on popular culture aims to be relatable through experiences and passions.

Halloween with The Hudsucker: Fearfest!

Image Creation: My Paranormal Podcast.

What is fear? Scientifically speaking, it is an essential bodily response to physical and emotional danger. If we didn’t feel any fear, we would not be able to protect ourselves from real harm and threats. Fear has come in various forms throughout the years and no, we’re not speaking of the lack of a wi-fi connection or running out of chicken wings in time for the football game.

Fear comes in the shape of a shadow that hovers over you as you try to turn the key to your front door; or the deafening silence in the middle of the night; twigs cracking as you wonder if you’re truly alone on your walk home, or the ominous creeks heard in the floorboards as you lay in bed. Fear sees, even when the eyes are closed.

In honor of the big spooky day tomorrow, a few of our writers got together to share with readers what films or fictional characters have scared them the most. Are our writers still in fear of these characters and films today? Beware…the following may not be for the faint of heart!

Robert Cartagena:

Image Credit: MJJ Productions Inc.

Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” … need I say more? Growing up a huge fan of the King of Pop, I would glue myself in front of the TV and watch his videos in amazement. But I wouldn’t watch “Thriller” as a kid whenever it aired because of how damn scary it was. What scared me the most about it was its sense of realism. Of course, I know the video is fictional. But back then, I was just a child who didn’t understand the differences between reality and fiction. Anytime I saw a full moon after watching the video, I was afraid either somebody from my family – or myself, for that matter – would turn into a vicious were-cat (as it was coined in the 1970s) like MJ did or we would encounter the MJ were-cat out in the dark. What also freaked me out about the video was the sight of the dead rising from their graves. It didn’t help that the video was known for its dark environments, so imagine how terrified I was at the thought of encountering zombies – let alone, a Michael Jackson zombie – in the middle of a dark street or alley. As if the video couldn’t get even scarier, it saved the best for last: the haunting laugh of horror legend Vincent Price echoing in the background as MJ sinisterly grins into the camera – WITH YELLOW WERE-CAT EYES! That image alone made me never want to watch “Thriller” again as a child. But for such a music video to create quite a terrifying experience personifies the creative and musical genius of Michael Jackson. I think the last time I watched the video was three years ago.

But whenever it’s on, I just sit back and enjoy the masterpiece that it is. It is one of my all-time favorites from the King of Pop and I love to play the song around Halloween time. I don’t know what exactly convinced me to face my fear and watch the video in its entirety back then, but I guess it goes back to those famous last words of Mr. Price:

“For no immortal can resist the evil of the Thriller!”

Stephen King:

Image Credit: Dimension Films

I remember the very first time I ever watched the movie, Scream. At first glance you have a film that isn’t actually that scary; a movie about teenagers, horror self awareness and a few jokes here and there. However, if you delve a little deeper into it, you will find something else entirely.

When you are teen years old and watching a film like this it is really easy to be dismissive, but when I saw it I was on my own, at night, in a place I was unfamiliar with – I was on holiday with my family and decided to stay in and watch a film.

This is getting pretty long winded, so cutting a long story short, I was petrified of the serial killer in Scream. Not for the violence, not for the disturbing imagery, but for who the killer was. Sorry to spoil it for you – not sure if it counts as a spoiler 17 years after release – but it turns out that there were two killers, not just one. And to top it off, they were friends of the people they were killing. The idea that someone I knew well could be a cold blooded killer without me even realizing it stayed with me for a while.

Does it still scare me today? I think a little less so, now that I have a better grasp on reality, and by that I mean that it was just a movie. Being honest though, I do still find the idea of someone close to me being something that I didn’t know they could be frightening. That prevailing thought still haunts me to this day. Michael Myers, Jason Vorhees, Freddy Kreuger are all scary bad guys, but you know that they are the bad guys from the start. It’s the element of surprise that is a true scare.

Nicole Drum:

Image Credit: Columbia Pictures Television

When I was about seven (actually, just a few days before my seventh birthday) CBS had a two-part miniseries based on Alice in Wonderland. I LOVE Alice in Wonderland so I was pretty excited. However, that miniseries was very trippy and while I enjoyed it I was also scared of it. I was particularly terrified by the Jabberwocky. It scared me so badly that I still occasionally have nightmares about that specific portrayal of the Jabberwocky to this day.

As an adult I’m not really scared of the Jabberwocky now. I’ve seen the miniseries again as an adult and it doesn’t quite hold the same terror for me when I see it. That being said some part of me is permanently near-seven-years-old and I can still feel that fear the same way I did back then.

Karen Datangel:

Image Credit: Walt Disney Pictures

I know she’s not one of the traditional “scary” characters in film, but I was terrified of Ursula from The Little Mermaid as a child. I loved Disney movies, but I tried to avoid watching The Little Mermaid whenever possible because of her. I just remember this one scene where she looks directly into the camera as she talks about her evil plans to sabotage Ariel and that part just frightened me! You could still see those wide and sinister eyes for seconds longer after that scene went dark. Her eel minions Flotsam and Jetsam were pretty awful too.

I still think Ursula is scary to a degree, even more so now that I’ve seen all of The Little Mermaid and she grows about 100 times in size near the end! But now I see her as a delightful kind of scary. I’m not one of those people that loves the Disney villains, but you gotta pay respect to many of them, especially Ursula. She was very sophisticated in her schemes and went through every possible measure to destroy Ariel, Prince Eric, and the sea kingdom, up until her brutal end. By the way, I think she probably suffered the worst death among villains in the Disney universe, and that probably scares me even more than Ursula herself nowadays!

Andrew Rogers:

Image Credit: Walt Disney Pictures

So, I know the movie I’m going to pick isn’t really a Halloween movie at all, but the movie that was scariest for me growing up was the Brave Little Toaster. I actually couldn’t watch it without freaking out halfway through and begging my mom to turn it off. I haven’t watched it at all since to see if my perspective has changed, but I’ve seen a lot of people around the internet with similar reactions to this movie, so I think it may just be one of those traumatic movies as a kid, like the ending of Bambi or something.

Chris Hill:

Image Credit: Falcon International Productions

When I was younger, I really only had two things that scared me (which is why I’m going to share both). The first being Michael Myers from Halloween. After watching the original, I just had nightmares about that pale white mask. The other is a little sillier. I apparently was freaked out by the raptors in Jurassic Park. So much so, that I closed my closet door tightly every night so that the raptors couldn’t jump out and get me!

I can safely say that neither of these things scare me anymore. I love horror movies and the Raptor Memes crack me up.

Tania Hussain:

Image Credit: Warner Brothers Pictures

Growing up I was terrified of the demon Pazuzu’s face from The Exorcist. Does anyone remember that? They showed the face for less than a second but it was terrifying. The fact that the filmmakers decided to only show a glimpse of the face in a brief cutaway sort of scene really scared me. Great scare tactic from the studio because you don’t have time to digest that it’s just makeup and an actor portraying something that hideous. It really scared me though as a kid. At that very scene I would remember curling up into my knees and talking to God and asking “Is that what devils really look like?” When the scene was over, I would just think about the face and the fact that there really is a heaven and hell, and hell looks like that. It was atrocious!

Does it still scare me? To be honest, it did up until a few years ago. I then decided the best way to confront my fear was look up the actor who portrayed the devil and I found it was an actress, actually. It was really funny because I discovered it was Eileen Dietz. Dietz is known for starring in Happy Days (right?!) and General Hospital. If I had known that years before and had the internet to guide me as a kid, I may not have feared that scene as much. That being said, I could literally quote this film as odd as that sounds now–that’s just how many times I’ve watched it.

I have to mention though…looking at it right now is really really creepy. That is one damn ugly face! Eww.

Elizabeth The:

Image Credit: International Clown Hall of Fame via AP

Bozo the Clown scared me the most growing up! Just look at him! I don’t understand why parents think children enjoy watching clowns. They’re terrifying!

My coulrophobia still persists today. I can’t even look at Ronald McDonald without wincing.

* * * * *

Growing up, what film or fictional characters scared you the most? Do they still scare you to this day? Let us know in the comments below!

Happy Halloween, ghouls and goblins!


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  1. Happy Halloween from The Hudsucker! | The Hudsucker - October 31, 2014

    […] Halloween with The Hudsucker: Fear Fest: In honor of the big spooky day, a few of our writers get together and share with readers what films or fictional characters have scared them the most. Are our writers still in fear of these characters and films today? Continue reading… […]

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