Thursday, September 13, 2007

And now for the coup de grace . . . the one video that has haunted me for over two decades before the universality of the internet granted me the ability to seek it out and destroy the power of its memory. Behold the awesome fright of . . .

The Bloodhound Gang and the Case of the Cackling Ghost! Oh my stars, this one stuck with me like no other television experience in the history of television experiences. Supposedly, I was deathly afraid of an "Open Pit BBQ" commercial in which a large man faces the screen and utters a deep, serious "Open. Pit." to the audience, but I was too young to maintain that memory. However, being the young nerd that I was (am?), I was (am?) a fan of the PBS kids' science series "3-2-1 Contact." People familiar with this show are also familiar with The Bloodhound Gang (not to be confused with the hard rock band of the same name), a group of kids who solve benign mysteries with the combined might of deductive reasoning and SCIENCE!
In this particular episode, the details of which were blocked from my mind until I revisited it, an elderly woman is the victim of the scare tactics of her ne'er-do-well nephew as he attempts to steal the supposedly-cursed Darjeeling Necklace that is in her possession. What are the scare tactics he used? On the surface, they are simply the recordings of cartoonish, maniacal laughter played through her radio and light shining upon moths in the woods (You say, "What's that now?" Just go with me on this). But in reality, it's a horror that tapped into some primeval fear center in many kids' brains. Note the comments associated with this video on youtube. The Cackling Ghost has a sobering effect on everyone, even the most idiotic of our society - the YouTube Commentor.

Here's part three for your enjoyment, in case you can't leave this unresolved.

Now playing: DJ Vadim - Who Me - DJ Vadim, Demolition Man
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