Tuesday, October 6, 2009

31 Days of Halloween - Day 6: Goosebumps' Haunted Mask

For today’s 31 Days of Halloween post I will be taking a trip down memory lane and discussing the first Halloween special that scared me half to death and that is the from the TV series Goosebumps and the episode was entitled The Haunted Mask. It first aired on Fox Kids back when they played real cartoons and some freaky TV shows. I want to review this episode as well as talk a little about the personal effect it had on me.

The story is about a girl named Carly Beth who is young and always gets pranks pulled on her, even by her friends, so on Halloween night she decides to buy a mask from a shady man at a strange novelty store so that she can finally scare the shit out of her friends and enemies. Well, this is nor ordinary mask, because it makes her do things she normally wouldn’t do… it turns her into a violent person, a mean person and soon the mask becomes part of her!


Way back when, I hated masks and I always hated the way certain masks looked like hanging from racks or stuck on those dowel rods; they looked like severed heads. Well, when I first saw Haunted Mask what really freaked me out about this movie was of course the way the mask looked and how it made Carly Beth act… I think subconsciously I realized then and there that you can be anybody behind a mask, even if that somebody is not you. That theme always frightened me.  Even the way that Carly Beth laughed and acted like reminded me of Freddy Krueger and it was so haunting and cringing to think that when you put on a mask, you can’t take it off… that it molds to your face. It really frightened me.

As for the movie itself, the production value on it was amazing and it the effects and make-up for it were outstanding for such an indie TV show… but of course, there rarely are gems like that in the Goosebumps series. Now… when the Halloween scenes come up in the movie and when Carly Beth goes around her neighborhood scaring people, the atmosphere is very fantasy like but childish and it really heightens the tone for this show.


The theme is obvious but I also want to elaborate on that scares of this show. Aside from the ones that scared me, the show plays on our childhood scares of getting worms in our sandwiches, bullies, fear of spiders and general primitive fears. For kids, this show is pretty strong and it cam be frightening.

As for me, though Goosebumps is childish now and it doesn’t do much for me, but it still is entertaining and it will always have a special place in my heart as being of the earliest Halloween shows I can remember. For a kids show, the episodes were strong and terrifying and they were one of my first exposures to horror. Haunted Mask was creepy and it was frightening… even today, I can still remember those feels that I had when I saw it. 

See Day 7 of our countdown to Halloween exclusively over at Deadly Movies (click here) tomorrow. 


Kelly Hogaboom said...

My daughter is reading all these books and liked this story. Do you know where I can find a copy of this episode for her to watch? We don't have a TV or VCR - just a computer.

Mr. Johnny Sandman said...

You check Best Buy or the library... I am sure they might have them.

Misty Mays said...

i remeber goose bumps! I used to looove them when i was in grade school and junior high. awesome!

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