Magazine article America in WWII

Scary Monsters

Magazine article America in WWII

Scary Monsters

Article excerpt

I grew up watching golden-age horror movies. I'd walk down to my friend's house and settle in front of the TV for the weekly Saturday afternoon airing of Creature Double Feature. That's where I learned all I know about Frankenstein, Dracula, the Mummy, the Wolf Man.

I say that I grew up watching horror movies rather than loving them. At that age I preferred to be outside running around, not sitting still and trying to focus on a slow-paced three hours of fuzzy moving images and strange dialogue backed by a scratchy-sounding orchestra. It probably didn't help that the afternoon sunlight glaring through the rec room windows wasn't exactly conducive to the fear required to enjoy these films fully.

That doesn't mean I didn't like those afternoons. I liked my friend. I liked his mom bringing us Kentucky Fried Chicken for lunch (I'm pretty sure he ate nothing but that, pizza, and peanut butter sandwiches--no jelly!). I liked playing the board game ABC Monday Night Football while we watched, he concentrating on the spectacle on screen and me on what pass play to call on third and long.

My lack of love for those horror movies didn't apply to the monsters themselves. That same friend and I would ride bikes to the local newsstand, and we'd spend an hour there, easy. I'd often leave with an issue of Famous Monsters of Filmland magazine. So, I did like monsters. I just preferred them on printed pages that I could thumb through and examine at my own pace, skipping what didn't interest me. …

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