During the month of October, AMC’s Fearfest has become one of my guiltiest pleasures. For the bulk of the month, the cable channel dusts off every horror gem in their collection, from classics to B-movie hilarity, and plays them on loop.
Adding the zombie melodrama The Walking Dead two years ago to its regular line-up didn’t hurt the annual celebration of gore, and this year Fearfest is a multi-platform extravaganza with online quizzes (that are really pretty hard, and therefore irritating), the opportunity to earn badges for your horror nerdiness that can be posted on Facebook, and a series of fakeumentaries interspersed within full-length films, exploiting everyone’s worst fears.
The whole she-bang is being hosted by Kevin Smith this year, gesticulating wildly at every commercial break as though he’s trying to escape from his over-sized hockey jersey. Not to cap too much on Kevin Smith — I’m a fan — but there is a lot of arm flailing.
As in years passed, Fearfest also includes some week-long movie marathons, showing a different sequel of a horror franchise each night. It’s a fun break from reality, if you can stand the inevitable plot holes and time discrepancies that occur. Halloween III, for instance, doesn’t just veer off from the Michael Myers storyline completely; it, in fact, has absolutely nothing to do with anything. At all. In any way.
This year’s independent study in the evolution of dreck on AMC was Friday the 13th, I through X. Some thoughts:
- Jason Takes Manhattan is actually not as bad as one might think. The way Jason is killed off is downright innovative and makes me forget the fact that, in this film, New York City is basically deserted and each alleyway includes a brown couch.
- I totally forgot Kevin Bacon was in the first Friday the 13th, in a Speedo, no less. It’s a pointless factoid if you like to play Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, though, since no one else in the film ever went much farther than Crystal Lake.
- The song that ’80s goth-punk character Vi is, um, dancing the robot to before she gets kebabbed by Jason in Friday the 13th Part 5: A New Beginning is called His Eyes by Pseudo Echo. This information will come in handy if you’re ever watching the movie and it gets stuck in your head for three days, as it did mine.
What are your terrifying pleasures?