Saturday, October 27, 2012

Serial Killers to Die For and Ghosts with the Most

Good morning and welcome to day two of the Howloween Blog Hop! Yesterday, I delved a bit into the world of Vampires and Werewolves. Today I'm going to talk about ghosts and serial killers and witches.

To my knowledge, I've never seen a ghost, but I find the subject fascinating. You find ghosts in the lore of many nations, many cultures. They can't all be wrong, right? I've been told by at least three people that they've seen the ghost of my first husband in my home. Who knows, maybe they did? They say people who meet violent ends sometimes linger, unable to rest, and he was murdered, so I guess it's possible. My daughter says she's also seen the ghost of a chef. Which brings up an early ghost film that I've seen (and which has been remade, too) - Thirteen Ghosts. The original William Castle film might seem a little hokey by today's standards, but I still like it. I also watch the remake on occasion, which has better special effects, but that isn't everything.

Another ghost story which was remade was House on Haunted Hill. The original featured St. Louis's own beloved Vincent Price as the host with the most, while the remake starred Geoffrey Rush, whom I adore. Once again, the older effects are primitive by today's standards, but hey, it's worth watching for sure.

Of course, there are ghost stories that are as romantic as they are scary, and the first one that comes to mind is an older film, The Ghost and Mrs. Muir, starring Rex Harrison and Gene Tierney. It was later made into a TV show, with Edward Mulhare and Hope Lange. It concerns a sea captain, and the widow who can see him, and their unusual relationship. All I can say is this dead sea captain can haunt me any time!

On the other hand, this ghost is one whose visit I could do without. And if someone tells you they have a video they want you to watch - run!

Serial killers. Who doesn't love a good serial killer? I know I do. One that instantly springs to mind at this time of year is - who else? Michael Meyers, star of the Halloween series. You know what they say,  you can't keep a good man down. Well, he proved that, coming back from the so-called dead for several films. Is he dead now? I wouldn't even hazard a guess.

While Michael is someone you wouldn't want to mess with, my favorite serial killer is not only handsome and intelligent, but oh so charming. He only kills rude people. Free range rude, as he refers to them. Who wasn't happy to know that he was going to dine on the obnoxious Dr. Chilton at the end of The Silence of the Lambs? And his relationship with FBI agent in training, later agent, Clarice Starling... well, it's complex. Be sure to read the books, particularly Hannibal, because I prefer the book ending to the movie without a doubt.

In Silence you actually get two serial killers, the other one being Ted Levine in his brilliant portrayal of Jame Gumb. Red Dragon precedes Silence chronologically, and has two versions. The first, Manhunter, starred Brian Cox as Dr. Lecter, and I find that as much as I like Brian (particularly in Sharpe), Anthony has ruined me for any other portrayal and I cannot enjoy Manhunter. Ralph Fiennes played Francis Dolarhyde in Red Dragon, and very well. On a side note, I thought it was really cool that he worked in St. Louis and lived in St. Charles, and the route he described going home was one I used to take every day when I worked in St. Charles, including Hwy 94.

 In the third film, Hannibal, my long time crush Gary Oldman plays the twisted, deformed billionaire Mason Verger who is intent on gaining revenge on Dr. Lecter. Read the book and you'll see that he died a different death there, including a character that was cut from the films, Mason's abused sister Margot. The relationship between Hannibal and Clarice really intensifies in this film.

My favorite witch is not really scary at all. I grew up watching Bewitched (I haven't seen the movie with Nicole Kidman but I've heard bad things about it, so I'm not rushing out to watch it). Elizabeth Montomery played Samantha Stevens, a witch married to a mortal, Darren Stevens (first played by Dick York, then by Dick Sargent). Life with a witch is hard enough, but then throw in her crazy relatives, and wow... lots to deal with. Her mother, Endora, played by Agnes Moorehead, could never get Darren's name right and would often call him Durwood. Uncle Arthur (Paul Lynde) was a trip, a real practical jokester. Elizabeth had an identical cousin with dark hair (played by Montgomery) who was good for causing trouble. And the doctor to the supernatural, Dr. Bombay (Bernard Fox) was always fun to see. I always wanted to be like Samantha, get what I wanted by twitching my nose. Alas, I still haven't figured out how to do it.

Well, that's it for now. Yes, there are plenty more, but you have lots of people to see, so Happy Halloween blogging, and don't forget, if you want to be part of my contest, leave a comment and leave your email address. Three winners will receive their choice from my backlist, and one will get a $10 Amazon gc!

Until later, take care!

♥ Julie


  1. If a ghost likes you, they'll stick with you wherever you move to. I was told once, which I don't know if it's true or not, that if you're scared of them they won't show themselves to you. Mine? They never leave me. Sometimes they can get mighty rowdy to the point I'd had to tell them to move to another side of the house or shut up. Thanks for allowing us to Hop with you!

  2. Thanks for your post. I can tell you that as I grew up I loved listening to and watching the one and only Vincent Price. :) And don't get me started on the Ghost and Mrs. Muir TV show. I had the biggest crush on that gorgeous sea Captain Edward Mulhare. Loved him.
    Happy Halloween.
    Carol L
    Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

  3. I love the Ghost and Mrs Muir. I used to watch the series also.