Happy Halloween: My Love Of The Macabre

So, you may not know this about me but I have deep seated love of the supernatural and macabre. I come by this naturally, thanks to my mom. I was raised on horror movies, no lie. My sister’s name is Ligeia. She is named after an old Vincent Price movie, “The Tomb Of Ligeia”. Why I was named after the Mona Lisa, I’ll never know.

So, it would be accurate to say that I cut my teeth on Vincent Price, Bella Lugosi and Christopher Walken, to name a few. I love old, scary movies. I adore Dracula and by that I mean the charming, mischievous, elegant, subtly sexual, handsome, lovers of beauty who are the vampires of days gone by. Evilness, was kind of secondary, if you catch my drift.

All those ghostly ruins, bared breasts and sumptuous glamor was bound to have an effect on me lol. In fact, my fascination ran so deep that I wanted to be a Parapsychologist. We can blame that on old films like The Entity, Firestarter and Amityville Horror.

So, its not surprising that Anne Rice and Stephen King are two of my favorite authors. I have been a “Constant Reader”, as Stephen likes to call his fan base, for over 20 years. They beguile me for completely different reasons. Anne is a fascinating evolution of those old horror films. Her characters encompass Vampires, Witches, Ghosts, Mummies and soon to be released, Werewolves. She infuses her characters with human characteristics and wonderful complexity. They have moral dilemmas, confrontations with God and the devil (Memnoch The Devil), a social hierarchy and a geneology. AMAZING, I know. If thats not enough to woo you, then the backdrop of architectural richness, exotic places steeped in history, music and art should suffice. Her books take me places laden with beauty. I am in total awe of the richness of her imagination and passion and own every book she’s ever written, even the ones on Christ, and she has never disappointed me. How many things can you say that about? One of my most cherished posessions is an email that she sent me after I wrote her via her website. Still agog lol.

Stephen was born to write, in my opinion. He has always reminded me of an old timer, hat pulled down over his eyes, pipe clenched in his teeth, who leans back in his rocking chair to say, “Let me tell you about the time…” And before you know it, you are lost in a world he seamlessly weaves, a good old fashioned yarn. That’s a God given talent. I love the way he takes the most ordinary things and turns them into the ghouls of our imagination. You almost never see it coming. He also blends in what he knows very well, as his protagonists are always everyday folks, often butting heads with authority or patriarchy. They are rule breakers, champions for good, or the voiceless who break out in the most psychotic ways. How can you not love a man who has given us some of the coolest kid heroines? Movies: Stand By Me, It and Firestarter. I loved Drew Barrymore way back when lol.

Which leads me to the modern version of horror, crap, crap, crap! Gross, bloody, violent. Ok, not all but at least 95%. Such a sad devolution of a genre. I cant hazard a guess as to why this is but it probably goes back to money and small attention spans.

I understand they have been comparing Anne Rice and Stephanie Meyer which I think is a joke. There is NO comparison. Twilight is cool for mild entertainment and it woes its intended audience, the average teenager, which explains its simplicity, repetition and vacuousness. The most interesting book was the last one, as a vampire-human offspring who mates with a werewolf is quite imaginative. Its pop vampire lore and will not stand the test of time, say I.

I will sum it up by saying all that all which is horrifyingly seductive to me is illustrated by Mary Shelley’s Frakenstein and Bram Stoker’s Dracula. I used to steal my mom’s full length, black velvet cape as a child and wear it to school. Yes, I’ve got it bad and I do believe that there are things walking this world that are unseen and defy the boundaries of our imagination. However, I only want to see them on screen or in print. 🙂

Wishing you a warm cognac to scare away the monsters 🙂

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10 thoughts on “Happy Halloween: My Love Of The Macabre”

  1. Vincent Price is the ultimate! Even his name conjurs a spooky atmosphere. I wish I could think of someone with the heft of him in todays’ film industry, but I can’t. He’s just the greatest! And I enjoy your writing style. Will visit again.

    1. Hi,

      So nice to see a new face around here :). Thanks for commenting. No, Vincent, had no rivals. His demeanor, his acting, style and voice are without equal. So sad that a whole generation only knows him from Thriller.

      Appreciate the compliment and will be sure to check out your blog.

  2. Coco, I love the visual of you wearing your mom’s full length, black velvet cape! What a vision you must’ve been! I too am a fan of the “non-explainable.” I always say, the fiber of the universe is quite fragile and sadly, in letting in the good, we also let in the bad. My nana used to call it the yin yang curse. It’s actually quite scary when you think about it. I try not to dwell on the paranormal too much but hey, everything goes in my book. That said, I will not watch horror movies alone. And the vampire flicks are for the kiddies. If you ask me, the zombie apocalypse is what’s hard core now. I wonder what Mr. King is waiting for to write that best seller? 🙂

    1. Bella!

      I always love to see you here :). Isn’t it cool? The black cape that is and do you know even at 63 my mom refuses to give it up lol. Go figure. I think that’s very cool, the yin yang curse. Best not to dwell but why live in denial? Yesterday, this quote came to me and I find it so very apt. “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” Shakespeare 🙂

      Stephen slowed down, in my opinion, after his writing accident. I imagine that the monsters of reality stalled him out for a bit but hope he picks up steam again.

  3. Enjoyed your Halloween posting, Coco! Do you recall Vincent Price in the Dr. Phibes movies? I remember those all too well…and can remember specific scenes, too. They would be considered a bit more campy in comparison to today’s horror movies, but I loved them. I agree with you on most of today’s films—they tend to be long on gore and short on the terror/suspense factor.

    1. Hey Cindy,

      Indeed, I do. My mom still calls me up all gleeful when AMC or TMC show one of his films. I was inconsolable when Vincent Price died :). Real cinema, at least American, which relies on plots rather than gore and special effects seems to be on the decline.

    1. ;P There are thousands of crazed horror fans. I’m just one of a very large club lol. The human psyche turns to horror in times of duress. “It’s comforting to think their are monsters scarier than the ones we battle in our everyday lives” – ME

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