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Horror in Pieces

Banes at 12:00AM, Oct. 1, 2020

Now that's a little TOO scary!

Horror is perfect for metaphor and allegory. In fact, a horror story is often allegorical by default, what with its bizarre landscapes and freaky beasties.

Here are some categories of horror and some thoughts on what they symbolize:

Reality Bites

psycho killer! Qu'est-ce que c'est ?

These are generally stories about close calls with home invaders, attempted kidnappers, and human traffickers.

Or rabid dogs, vicious sharks, and monkeys.

Human killers and the natural world (seen in Jaws and Cujo) have grit and, well, reality to them. I think they're cautionary tales above all else…be respectful of animals, especially ones you don't know! Respect nature!

There are just as many lessons to be learned as far as other people go (or potential other people) Lock your doors! Keep an eye on your drink! Hold your keys between your fingers until you get to the door!

Parents should LOVE horror stories like these and share them liberally (I believe they often do)…but always within reason I suppose. We don't want our kids to become paranoid.

Well…maybe just a little bit. Just paranoid enough.

Have you heard the Urban Legend about the killer hiding in the back seat? Good! Hopefully you always check your back seat before getting in your car. I know I do!

Monster Mash

-Monsters as Metaphor

The giant bugs of 1940's and 50's scifi were atomic bomb-created.

Frankenstein is our own hubris come back to haunt us. Arrogance and disrespect of nature leads us to the horrors of Creature From the Black Lagoon, The Descent, Alien, etc etc etc.

Vampires and Zombies might represent narcissistic people who DRAIN others of their energy. Perhaps psychopaths and sociopaths are what we're talking about. We must not get too full of ourselves!

We've been warned!



I think that ghost stories are compelling and scary because we ALL wonder, or fear, or anticipate what will happen to us after we die. Ghost stories crack open the door to see what life after death might entail…and the stories also REMIND us of our own mortality. Maybe that's what makes them truly scary.

Ghost stories help us work out the fear of Death itself. That's the ultimate fear!

…Or is it?

The Other

Mad from the Revelation!

This metaphor is the ultimate expression of the fear of the unknown. The world is a huge place that is largely beyond our control. There are powerful forces out there that have a strong influence over us whether we like it or not. Otherdimensional or demonic Beings and stories give us a chance to deal emotionally with those potentially overwhelming emotions.

All of us are experiencing events that are very much beyond our control right now.

Wishing you all a fun, safe, memorable Halloween season!


from the best of banes collection, back from the grave once again



PaulEberhardt at 8:27AM, Oct. 3, 2020

I think we're all born with a certain drive to explore our fears. It makes sense from an evolutionary perspective: the better you are at facing your fears, i.e. staying rational even when crapping your loincloth, the less likely you are to become the next sabre tiger's victim. It works, too - I don't know of any horror fan who has ever been eaten by a sabre tiger. ;) I've heard it said that horror fiction is our modern surrogate for them, because we subconsciously know we need this kind of kick to stay alert. But they're not quite right. There's still enough to be afraid of in modern life. I can much better imagine that the very first campfire tales (presumably told in grunts) were horror stories as a means of relief from all the real fears, same as today. Call it catharsis if you like. The beauty of it is that this also works with the really badly done stuff, just in a slightly different way.

Banes at 9:40AM, Oct. 1, 2020


Banes at 9:39AM, Oct. 1, 2020

@dpat - I’ll never admit it! never!

Banes at 9:38AM, Oct. 1, 2020

@avart - thanks! Yeah, there are sequels I really love (more than the original even) but it can get...tiresome

Tantz_Aerine at 9:36AM, Oct. 1, 2020

There is also... *yourself* DU DUN DUUUUUUN

dpat57 at 9:05AM, Oct. 1, 2020

Good points all, but what's really scary is how attractive I find that cat girl, no idea who's behind the make-up. The gremlin's looking good too.

Avart at 8:43AM, Oct. 1, 2020

Great article Banes! I think the same as @usedbooks, I enjoy more a horror movie if it doesn't have a dozen sequels (maybe I exaggerated XD).

Banes at 7:08AM, Oct. 1, 2020

That is a really good point, ub- lot of truth to that!

usedbooks at 3:51AM, Oct. 1, 2020

I like all my speculative fiction in short form. Every longer horror production I've seen is boring, gross, or a combination. I like creepy. Not in it for the disgusting horror. Long sci-fi doesn't feel like sci-fi any more. Once the concept is established, it turns into a different genre (drama, action, or whatever). Conceptual stuff and emotion-invoking (horror) stuff is at its best in short form. I love an anthology, especially the 20 to 30 minute stories.

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