Friday, July 1, 2016

Horror Television when I was a kid

I remember that Saturdays were a big horror day for me as a kid. CREATURE FEATURES was the Holy Grail for me when I was younger. I had to make sure I got my rest during the day so I could keep my eyes open long enough to watch it.

First came THE LOVE BOAT - another fave of mine back in the day that reached the extreme high point when I actually met Charo when I was on a cruise! (She was super nice to me and my 13 year old or so self was in love with her at once.)

Then after the Love Boat was FANTASY ISLAND which was my gateway vehicle into the likes of THE TWILIGHT ZONE and THE NIGHT GALLERY a bit later.

Then...if I managed to stay awake and look chipper, my parents would let me stay up for 
CREATURE FEATURES. This was the best thing in the world. The opening montage of horror goodness followed by the most excellent Bob Wilkins and his cigar with his fantastic, deadpan voice and blank stare.

The movies ranged from THE MUSHROOM PEOPLE to TWINS OF EVIL and never failed to fill me with glee. I still remember the version of TWINS OF EVIL they picked still having the nudity and me seeing the Collinson Twins'...delights...when I was very young and being thrilled by the sight. hehehe

I also stared in horror as the NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD trailer was presented one night by ole Bob. The damn thing scared the crap out of me and still fills me with dread when I hear those discordant piano cords!

However, CREATURE FEATURES wasn't the only show in town. KTVU also had a few afternoon features that played horror that I loved as well. I still remember my Mother making popcorn in a big pot, putting it into a large bowl, then sitting with me to watch these old horror movies. We'd have a ball watching the likes of THEM, EARTH VS THE FLYING SAUCERS, THE THING FROM ANOTHER WORLD and THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL. So good. And, I'm still a fan of popcorn to this day. :)

There was one that I recall the visual for, but not the name of, where a man dressed in a white gorilla suit played music on a Victrola that was next to him on a little stand, then he'd do these odd little dances to begin the show. As the movie went on, he'd do little skits that were related to the movie, I believe.

There was the CHILLER DILLER movie that had another fantastic little 70s opening that I loved.

KBHK had the GHOULIE MOVIE in the 80s which was another good horror outlet. 

A lot of these sorts of shows went by the wayside with the advent of VHS and cable programming.  The idea of being able to go to the store and rent full movies to take HOME and watch was epic. I remember a friends parents actually purchasing the first VCR in the group and us flocking to his house for movie parties that would last all night.

When we all made VCR purchases, we would round robin the movie party location and make an effort to have one every two weeks or so.

A fantastic time to be a kid who loved horror. :)

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