Are movie stars a thing anymore? One of the consequences of cinema’s shift to the global market and franchise filmmaking is a decline in movies built around their casts. I mean sure, we still have A-list actors, but I think it’s hard to say they compare to the classic Hollywood idea of a “star.” Just look at one of the highest-grossing box office stars of all time, Robert Downey Jr. He was the highest paid actor in the world between 2013 and 2015 and should be one of the most recognizable people on the planet, having starred in the highest-grossing film ever made as recently as last year. But were people showing up Avengers Endgame to see Robert Downey Jr. or Tony Stark? How many people are out there who have Iron Man tattoos but haven’t even heard of Zodiac, Chaplin, or Weird Science? And will those same people show up to watch him get farted on by CGI animals? The answer is: I don’t know. Because this narrative, like so much of 2020, has been thrown off completely thanks to the global pandemic. The state of the industry back in January has already become irrelevant. Case in point: while it would be nice to call Dolittle a commercial disappointment, it likely will remain the sixth highest-grossing film of 2020.
There’s been a change of plans. I was supposed to review an episode of Riverdale but after watching five minutes and being totally lost I bailed. Then I decided to watch the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina and did and was ready to review it. Then I found out Shudder was releasing a surprise animated episode of Creepshow on October 29th and it was a no brainer.
Airdate: October 28, 2017
Whoops. I did not realize I was supposed to post this yesterday, but can you blame me? Days don’t matter, though I suppose it was nice to have something this month that imposed on the three of us what day it was. Which is a sentence that would make zero sense in a year that wasn’t 2020. Anyways, perhaps I’m stalling because it’s just hard to feel any particularly strong feelings about The David S. Pumpkins Halloween Special, a full-length special centered around the perplexing character that was featured in a pretty solid SNL sketch from 2016. It says something that David S. Pumpkins is a character that doesn’t quite have enough legs to fill 21-minutes, but that’s what happens when you have a character where nobody ever really knows what his deal is.
Season 1, Episode 4
Original Air Date: October 30th, 2012
So The Mindy Project is another show I didn’t know much about going in, but thankfully, as the fourth episode of a half hour comedy, I didn’t have a lot of catching up to do. It’s also a show that actually made its Halloween episode actually about Halloween, so that’s another big plus for me. I guess this is exactly what I was looking for when I picked so many shows I had never watched for this year’s Shocktober. Just a fun slice of a much bigger pie. Basically, I’m happy to be going out on a nice note. Let me tell you about it.
Season 1, Episode 12
Airdate: October 5th, 2012
This is the only episode of a show for this year’s Shocktober that I’d seen before picking it. I’ve seen it a couple of times. You could say it’s a Halloween tradition. Even though it’s not technically a Halloween episode. No, we’re talking about Summerween.
Season 1, Episode 6
Original Air Date: October 29, 2007
I have always considered Chuck with trepidation. On one hand, it’s a show passionate fans desperately fought to keep on the air and I’m definitely interested in a show built around the trio of Zachary Levi (because Thor 2, Shazam, and Mrs. Maisel), Yvonne Strahovski (because she’s in the Mass Effect games), and Adam Baldwin (because Firefly and definitely not his politics). On the other hand, it looked like it could be The Big Bang Theory with action. So is “Chuck Versus the Sandworm” a delightfully nerd-friendly Halloween adventure or cringey drivel? I lean toward the latter.
Season 6, Episode 7
Original Air Date: October 25, 2005
In case you were wondering what my methodology was when it came to choosing my Halloween specials this year, it was simply googling “Halloween specials” and scanning the listicles and Wikipedia article that came up. I had to go back and check, but this episode of Gilmore Girls really was featured as one of the “best Halloween episodes” by Time, Cosmopolitan, and Insider. Which is absolutely bullshit because not only is this episode impossible to watch for a newcomer, it also barely has anything to do with Halloween.