Sunday, October 30, 2016

Scott Faubion: Halloween, home haunts, and horror movies are about escaping reality

  What is it about horror movies and Halloween that get me (and millions of other people) excited each fall? Is it the crisp autumn air or the candy corn that puts sparkles in our eyes? Is it classic horror movies, such as Friday the 13th or Nightmare on Elm Street, that get us excited? Not exactly. It is the sense of escape that Halloween brings that gets us excited.

  I theorize that it is the idea of escaping our daily routines, playing dress up, and becoming enthralled by spine-tingling thrillers that excites us each October. October is that time of year that adults can pretend to be children again and play make-believe. Of course, it all starts with a scary costume (or funny costume).

  Throughout the month of October, we adults get to attend Halloween parties and be whomever or whatever we want to be. We don't have to be the guy in the next cubicle for a night. We can be a soldier, a mummy, or an all-powerful vampire. We get to leave our regular selves behind. When else can grown men put on latex masks and velvet capes? When can women dress up in gorilla suits and not think twice about it other than at Halloween? For many of us, Halloween is our time to be someone else. We can make or buy our capes and tights and parade around the parties like celebrities.

  The Halloween props you see inside and outside of homes at Halloween add to the feeling of escape. My wife and I go all out at Halloween, decorating the driveway and sometimes even turning the garage into a haunted house. It is fun for us and the neighbors. Will haunting your home make you money or in any way add to your financial state? Not really. But, it is entertainment and, believe it or not, family entertainment. We love seeing area families come to trick or treat at our home and brave the haunted garage. The children squeal with glee and the parents leave with smiles on their faces. You have to have Halloween props to add to that sense of escapism.

  Let's not forget about the movies that are on television and in the movie theaters at Halloween. I know some people do not like horror movies (or monster movies as some people call them), but they have a place in society. It all comes back to escaping reality. I do not watch horror movies to enjoy the violence. I love seeing Jason, Freddy or Leatherface get beaten in the end. But, the suspense of the movies and feeling that I am being taken out of the regular world is exciting. Worrying about Leatherface or a group of evil space aliens for an hour and a half is more fun than worrying about bills or nuclear power plants exploding. I know Leatherface will remain trapped in the television at the end of the night.

  I challenge those people who do not celebrate Halloween to step out of their comfort zones and enjoy the holiday. Buy some Halloween candy, a festive costume and Halloween props. Even if all you do is hang some cobwebs, put on an alien mask and watch old Munsters episodes on television, give the holiday a try. We all need to escape our lives once in a while, and Halloween is the perfect time.

  About the author: Scott Faubion is one of the owners of Halloween Hill, an online store that sells Halloween decorations, animated Halloween props, and handmade haunt items. These props are for use in haunted houses, home haunts, and amusement parks.

  Be sure to also visit Halloween Hill's Freddy vs. Jason page.

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