Despite occasionally writing about the franchise when something newsworthy has happened over the past few years, I didn't realize how powerful R.L. Stine's Goosebumps was until fairly recently. With our girls now 6 & 9, they've discovered the spooky world of Goosebumps, first through the 1990s television series which has been available on Netflix. But earlier this year, a neighbor started placing some of the original, 400-million-selling books from Scholastic into the Simplay3 Neighborhood Sharing Library that I installed in our yard last year. Goosebumps became a staple of the heavy reading rotation, and eventually they checked out the 2015 film that was inspired by that world. All that said, the timing of Sony Pictures' Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween couldn't be better, and the fact that I was invited to host a Chicago-area advance screening of the film was absolutely perfect... a first-hand example of just how powerful the Goosebumps franchise really is. And Haunted Halloween? It's primed to be a perennial favorite - a new Halloween classic that's going to surprise a lot of people.
Consider this as "Unholy Manipulator" Re-Revisited... and how is PRODUCT OF HATE connected to THE GOLDBERGS?
For whatever reason, October always seems to be an important month for PRODUCT OF HATE. This year, the band finds themselves in a holding pattern as the finishing touches are placed on their second full-length album, currently being mixed and mastered by Chris Collier (PRONG, Flotsam & Jetsam, KXM) at CMC21 Productions in Santa Clarita, California for a 2019 release. While the Halloween season for 2018 has work continuing behind-the-scenes to ready the next era for the band, the season brings with it some perennial favorites, and as I've noted in the past, I've had the good fortune to be a part of a few... one of which is PRODUCT OF HATE's UNHOLY MANIPULATOR. Whether you call it a "short film" or a "longform music video," it's a pretty special thing in that when we created it, the video paired the then-unsigned band with HELLRAISER star Ashley Laurence (who'd also appeared in Slipknot's "Snuff") and some big talent behind the camera (see below). And then there's the fact that yours truly handled directing/editing duties. The video gained a life of its own, eventually helping to secure the band a deal with Napalm Records, who issued PRODUCT OF HATE's debut album, BURIED IN VIOLENCE back in 2016. The video itself was originally released independently in 2012, reissued by Napalm for Halloween 2015, and it will forever live on as I feature it in 31 Days of Halloween here on THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine once more! Evil monsters... wicked clowns... homages to RESERVOIR DOGS, FARGO, and THE WARRIORS... see it below!
If you have kids, there's a solid chance that slime is something of a fixture in your home at this point. Yes, every time I write about the slime craze I'm reminded of the fantastic He-Man and The Masters of the Universe Evil Horde Slime Pit that I once received as a kid but never got to play with (it was taken back to the store after a warning about staining was noted on the box). Decades later, my oldest daughter is all about the slime, from do-it-yourself kits to ready-made tubs. The consistency and texture varies greatly, but one regular purchase has been SLIMYGLOOP from Horizon Group USA. We just recently purchased a DIY Mermaid Slime Kit, but for the Halloween season they have something even better... ready-made Spooky SLIMYGLOOP MIX'EMS.
Disney's Hocus Pocus is one of those films that's become bigger with age. Originally released in 1993, the tale of the Sanderson sisters - a trio of witches transported from 1693 to 1993 - wasn't a huge hit at the time. Over the past 25 years, however, the film has taken on legendary status, largely due to its October airings on Disney Channel where it's connected with new generations of fans each year. Directed by Kenny Ortega, the appeal to modern audiences is quite apparent - with Hocus Pocus containing much of the same charm that's pushed his Descendants trilogy (the third chapter arrives next year) into massive success. The song and dance combined with the magical, but not quite realistic scenery gives it a theatrical feel, drawing audiences into the story penned for the screen by Neil Cuthbert (Return of Swamp Thing) and "Master of Horror" Mick Garris.
The PAW Patrol is back for spooktacular adventures in the brand new DVD collection, PAW Patrol: Halloween Heroes. Available now, PAW Patrol fans can get into the Halloween spirit with the pups as they bravely board a ghostly pirate ship, explore cabins, caves and mazes, try to solve the haunting of the Lookout Tower and more. It'll be a scary good time watching all seven PAW Patrol adventures including a really ghoul double-length special! As part of our annual 31 Days of Halloween here at The Rock Father™ Magazine, Nickelodeon DVD and I have teamed-up to get a few readers hooked-up with copies of the DVD just in time for the spooky season!
Much like the constant debate on whether or not Die Hard is a Christmas movie (it is), there's a frequent clash over whether Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas is a Halloween or a Christmas movie (it's both). For two-and-a-half decades, the debate has raged on, but in the end audiences are still just happy to enjoy the cross-holiday adventures of Jack Skellington whenever they'd like. I've always found myself to be quite attached to Jack as The Pumpkin King (I'm an October child from the largest pumpkin-producing state in the nation), and his songs have always struck an important chord. That said, The Nightmare Before Christmas is one of those films that I've owned over and over again, from VHS to DVD to 20th Anniversary Blu-ray and now the 25th Anniversary Sing-Along Edition. Indeed, despite the music of the film being of such massive importance, a sing-along version for in-home viewing has just now become available.