Longtime readers know about my obsession with Castle Dracula, a famous dark ride that once graced the boardwalk in Wildwood, New Jersey.
I’ve been to Wildwood several times since Castle Dracula burned down, and if I’m being honest, it just ain’t the same without it.
…which is why the subject of our latest Purple Stuff minisode is so special!
Jay from The Sexy Armpit is similarly obsessed with Castle Dracula, and we were both shocked to learn that there was an “escape room” attraction in Philadelphia that sought to continue Castle Dracula’s legacy:
Escape Empire: Dead by Dusk is a total throwback. You’ve probably seen some high-tech escape room attractions (they’re even popular in shopping malls now), but this one is intentionally low-fi and meant to have the vibe of truly old school haunts and dark rides.
Best of all, the owner is a major Castle Dracula nut who put an enormous amount of time into giving this place the same flavor. Hell, there are even decorations that came straight from the original attraction!
We had no idea what we were in for, but we ended up being so glad we went. Hear all about our latest adventure by clicking the giant play button down below!
You can also download this week’s minisode by right-clicking here.
Main takeaway from this show: The Halloween season is what you make of it. Don’t just sit around looking at the same stuff day after day. Don’t just go to the same five stores and then act disappointed when things feel flat. Get out there! Do things!
Enjoy the show!
Here’s another batch of super old Halloween-themed newspaper ads, and a reminder that I love super old Halloween-themed newspaper ads. It’s nostalgia without the blinders on.
VHS Horror Movies!
(McCrory’s, 1988 & 1990)
Throughout the ‘80s and ‘90s, it was common practice for store chains to sell spooky VHS tapes during the Halloween season — even if they normally sold no tapes at all!
Typically, you’d find a standing rack of “budget” horror tapes, all sold for the same price. This happened in stores as large as Kmart and as small as your local pharmacy.
These tape assortments were often right next to the Halloween costumes. Even if you were apprehensive about scary movies (and I sure was), it was impossible to avoid making eye contact with the monsters on those boxes.
When we were kids, the mere proximity to danger made Halloween more exciting! Read More…
During Friday the 13th Part 2’s cold open, Alice Hardy — the sole survivor from the first movie — was killed by Jason Voorhees. (Icepick to the temple, if you were wondering!)
Perhaps more shocking than the way Alice croaked was what she saw just before it happened:
See, Jason was specifically after Alice to avenge his mother’s death. (Remember, Alice beheaded Pamela Voorhees in the original Friday the 13th.)
Jason somehow hid his mother’s rotting head in Alice’s refrigerator, ensuring that it’d be the last thing she saw before cashing out. (An unusually poetic move from Mr. Voorhees!)
During this scene, all eyes are naturally on Pamela’s head… unless you’re me, and you’re way more interested in what sort of food Alice kept in her fridge.
That’s why I’m here!
Using that image, I was able to identify nearly every item in Alice’s refrigerator. I don’t just mean in a general way, either. Anyone can see that there’s a bottle of salad dressing in there, but I worked hard to determine exactly what kind of salad dressing it was.
Friday the 13th Part 2 was shot in late 1980. This particular scene was filmed in Torrington, Connecticut. Naturally, the items inside of Alice’s refrigerator reflected both of those facts.
Here’s the breakdown: Read More…
As My Pet Monster fans know, the well doesn’t run very deep. There’s the classic doll, a couple of spinoffs, a short-lived cartoon and that weird live-action movie. Once you’ve absorbed those things, you’ve pretty much read the book.
…which is why it’s my great privilege to show you something that even the most devoted followers of My Pet Monster probably don’t know about:
Yes, a costumed character version of My Pet Monster once appeared at Toys “R” Us!
(The suit was less a “come-to-life” My Pet Monster and more just a super-sized version of the doll, with the same dead eyes and the same rubber teeth. Hell, it even had the plastic handcuffs!)
My Pet Monster’s unlikely appearance was promoted in this commercial, which I found hiding in a DuckTales episode from 1987. Woo hoo.
Our hero appeared alongside Garfield, a Pound Puppy and a Cabbage Patch Kid. Strange that out of the four costumed characters, My Pet Monster only came in third as far as nightmare fuel. (The Cabbage Patch Kid in particular could’ve inspired her own horror franchise.) Read More…
There’s a scene in Hellraiser: Bloodline where these goofy twin brothers get twisted into one writhing Cenobite. For the next two months, that’s us.
Welcome to Dinosaur Dracula’s 2017 Halloween Countdown.
(WARNING: GORY! GO FULL-SCREEN ON YOUTUBE!)
(You watched that, right? You’re supposed to watch it before you read any further. Don’t play with my flow. Also, I’m sorry the video was so gross and full of guts. I hope your kids are asleep.)
This marks the 15th anniversary of the Halloween Countdown, a tradition I started back in 2003 and hope to continue forever. Or at least through 2078, which just happens to be the officially listed weight for Mega Metagross.
What’s in store for you this year? Articles! Videos! Podcasts! Toy reviews, candy reviews, retro commercial reviews! Things you are expecting! Things you aren’t expecting! So many werewolves! At least ten werewolves!
From now through October 31st, my goal is to give you as much totally custom Halloween content as I can possibly stand making. I take tremendous pride in the fact that so many of you count on Dino Drac as part of your Halloween celebration. Outside “nice eyebrows,” it’s the biggest compliment you could give me.
We’re starting off this year’s Countdown with a bang. And a cough.
Madd Matt has returned with an all-new bag of random Halloween junk. Everything from a giant bat to a bag of tortilla chips. Watch it. You have to. Read More…
Get set for another Purple Stuff Podcast minisode!
This time, me and Jay hit a couple of stores on the hunt for Halloween goodies. It didn’t work out quite as well as we’d hoped, but then, nothing does:
What magically macabre wonders awaited us at Dollar General and Kmart? You’ll have to listen to find out.
Just click the giant, ugly play button down below!
You can also download this week’s episode by right-clicking here.
Enjoy, and have a great weekend!