Macabre Amusements

Tea Time with the Dead: The Victorian Tradition of Cemetery Picnics

  Within the wrought-iron and stone walls of American cemeteries—beneath the shade of oak trees and tombs’ stoic penumbras—you could say many people “rest in peace.” However, not so long ago, people of the still-breathing sort also gathered there to rest – and dine –...

Scream and Scream Again: The Story Behind the “Wilhelm Scream”

  Click here to hear the original Wilhelm Scream!  The Wilhelm Scream is arguably the most famous sound effect in the history of cinema. As of the beginning of 2018, the scream has appeared in as many as 372 films and numerous TV shows. Some of the popular classics of...

The 15 Best Urban-Legend Horror Movies

  As ranked by Vulture.com   This month, Slender Man opened in theaters after a long and winding road to the box office (including multiple release-date changes and a mostly absent marketing campaign). The central story is based on the internet lore surrounding the...

Stryx – Italian TV’s Satanic Disco Variety Hour

  For a short time in 1978, Italian TV viewers could enjoy a musical/variety show with Grace Jones, medieval satanic imagery, and even a cameo from the Devil himself. Picture, if you will: A lithe blonde woman climbs onto a translucent, elevated platform, wearing a...

The Weird World of the Halloween Sound-Effects Artist

  A chain rattles, and the wind blows. A skeleton’s bones clatter, and a woman shrieks. A wolf growls, and a ghost whispers in the darkness. Halloween, amirite? The Halloween sound effects album is a staple of the holiday, almost as inextricably linked to it as...

Discovering Giallo: The Best Horror Subgenre You’ve Never Heard Of

  Giallo originally referred to the pulpy crime novels penned by Italian authors in the Mussolini era, after Il Duce banned the import of American and British books of the popular genre. They sported yellow covers, hence the name—giallo means “yellow” in Italian. In...