Spooky Saturday Survey.

There’s a new feature up, covering four random Pokemon foodstuffs from thirteen years ago. I admit that I’m not the Pokefan I once was, and that it’s become something I admire more from afar. Still, the featured snacks come from a time when I was all about Pokemon, and if you were into the franchise at that time, the sight of these gloriously tacky Pop-Tarts and Eggo waffles should thrill and excite you.

My pal Judson sent me a care package of assorted trading cards, and I nearly died when I saw this one. It’s from Topps’ 1988 Dinosaurs Attack series, where each card presented a new vision of gory torment, with violent dinosaurs warping to present day to tear us to shreds.

The cards held nothing back, and they were damn creative in their brutality. Aside from the expected visuals of dinosaurs eating people, you had stuff like prehistoric bugs devouring our scalps, and even a card where a dinosaur blipped into present day directly over a human being, with merging fleshes and all. Jesus!

But this is the card that really affected me. Good old #52. “The Ultimate Sacrifice.”

To save civilization, some guy sacrifices himself to the “Supreme Evil” – essentially an enormous MUTANT LEADER DINOSAUR, which was Topps’ way of bringing Satan into the mix without actually saying it. Adding the sick story to the fact that they used a photo of a real guy on the back of the card, #52 haunted me for years.

I collected the cards when they were still new, which, by my math, made me much too young for something this twisted. It wasn’t as if I expected a multi-eyed mutant dinosaur to zap into existence and eat me, but between the hellish themes and the melting skin, #52 opened my mind to all sorts of previously inconceivable horrors. When it was dark and quiet enough, bad thoughts took over.

And it’s those memories that inspired tonight’s survey:

What are some of the weirdly creepy things that gave you pause? I’m not simply talking about moments in horror movies that scared you only in that instant. I mean, things that affected you and stuck with you. Things that got in your head, stayed there, and directed brain traffic for far longer than they had any right to. Maybe it was a movie moment. Maybe it was a scene from a video game. Maybe it was the “Tallman’s Ghost” episode of Unsolved Mysteries.

It’s time to confess. Perhaps you’ll exorcise a few demons. Go!