Back in the late 60’s when I first started watching old horror movies was probably when I was first exposed at a very young age to the show Creature Features. Every Friday night, without fail the scene would play out pretty much the same way as it did on the previous Friday night. Mom would be in her bedroom putting on make up, getting ready to go out with her friends, my older sister would be in her room yakking with one of her friends, and there I’d be sitting on the front porch wondering which horrifying monster Creature Features was going to be serving up to me that night. Finally as Mom was getting ready to leave she would tell my sister the same thing as before.
“Keep an eye on your little brother, and make sure he doesn’t stay up to watch those god awful horror movies again!”
Of course that never worked because she would always coax my silence with fresh popcorn whenever she would secretly invite one of her friends over after our mother would tell her not to. So long about 7:00 PM, Midge would arrive and they would immediately go to my sisters room, with little care as to what I was doing mind you, and long about 8:20 or so they would come out and make hot buttered popcorn for my scare-a-thon before returning to the bedroom. I didn’t know what they were doing in there, hell I didn’t care either.. All I knew was soon, very soon, I would be completely immersed in the disturbing world of my beloved Creature Features.
The lights would go off, the TV would come on and long about 6:00 PM that music.. That wonderfully creepy music would permeate my senses.. and then- the title.. “The completely horrifying monster thingy that dripped blood and ate people!” Dun Dun DUUUUNNNNNN!!! ohhhhhh my.. A CLASSIC IN THE MAKING!! I don’t know what it was exactly, maybe it was due to the fact that I was only nine years old, but everything- especially the monster movies seemed a lot scarier then. The opening scene would always set you up, the black & white film would crackle to life.. An old car would slowly roll to a stop on a deserted dirt road leading into a heavily wooded area. The young attractive couple would seductively smile at each other, he would turn of the headlights as they leaned into each other for that first yucky germ spreading kiss. (Hey! Back off! I was NINE! OK??)
Slowly the camera would pan through the front wind shield, across the hood of the car, and there, just at the edge of the treeline something would stir. Eyes widening, that first delicious mouthful of semi burnt popcorn, (that your idiot sister never learned how to properly make..) Eyes straining, leaning forward, almost holding your breath. then you see the foilage along the trees rustling.. Ohhhhh.. its moving toward the drivers side of the car.. That means its gonna eat the guy first! ohh she’s gonna see the whole thing and she’s gonna scream at the top of her lungs.. and then.. its going to drag her off into the woods where it swallows her whole and then spits out her bones!! SWEET! and of course your bravery is short lived as you see it for the first time. Its Bipedal, it has twelve eyes, its hairy, has six long gnarly disgusting claw like digits- which of course are also hairy.. Over all it has a serious hygiene problem and is the most horrifying thing you’ve ever seen.
The orchestra kicks into overdrive as it rips the cardoor open, and brutally murders the dumbfounded young man in the drivers seat in the most brutally efficient, disgusting manner, that the human imaginations of the period were allowed to film at the time. and of course it would scare the living shit out of you, and popcorn would spew from your mouth and bowl and would fill the air, and thats how your mother would find you two hours later when she would return home from her date night. Huddled under a pile of blankets, behind the sofa,11:00 o’clock news playing on the television, popcorn right where it was supposed to be.. all over the floor, all because you were convinced that YOU were next! Lordy I loved that show!!