Traumafessions :: Reader Harmonyfb on Giant Spiders, Sir Cecil Creep & Night Gallery

Ah, memories. Let me start by saying that I love scary movies, and always have, which makes my own kindertraumas even more amusing.

One of my earliest traumatic memories was watching a black and white movie about giant invading spiders (I think it was ‘Invasion of the Giant Spiders’, but I’ve never been able to verify). In one scene, there’s a toddler in a playpen in the front yard of a house while the spiders invade. People are running and shrieking, the town’s on fire, the toddler is *screaming*, and NOBODY IS COMING to save it. I think I was about 4 years old, and that scared the beejezus out of me.

AUNT JOHN SEZ: I believe the movie you are thinking of is the 1958 chestnut EARTH VS. THE SPIDER, or THE SPIDER as it is also known. THE SPIDER trailer is kind of dull, so let’s take a gander at the greatness of the trailer for 1975’s THE GIANT SPIDER INVASION:

Sorry for the interruption, please continue Harmonyfb:

At six, I used to hide behind the couch any time ads for “Sir Cecil Creep” (our local scary movie host) came on TV.

When I was 8 or 9, I developed a love of TWILIGHT ZONE repeats and NIGHT GALLERY first-runs. One NIGHT GALLERY episode scared me so badly that I still occasionally have nightmares about it. It was about a painter who winds up with his face permanently morphed into the ‘op art’ painting he’s been working on. Notice I have no idea what the actual plot was – it was the image that was burned into my tender psyche. Someday I’m going to have to find a copy of this episode.

AUNT JOHN SEZ: I just combed through the exhaustive NIGHT GALLERY guide, and didn’t see anything about an op-ed artist with a Cubist face. Could have it been a TWILIGHT ZONE episode?

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Amanda By Night
13 years ago

I’d love to find out what that Night Gallery (or Twilight Zone) episode is!

I LOVE Giant Spider Invasion. LOVE.

13 years ago

In the NYC, Northern NJ, Conn Tri State area we had that classic “Chiller Theater” animated six fingered hand to scare us.  There is an article here on this site about that hand BTW. Of course, I’m famillar with “Giant Spider Invasion” c.0. MST3K so all I know is that Alan “The Skipper” Hale Jr. is in it and they do several ELP “Lucky Man” riffs in it.  I didn’t see that as a kid “unmisted” so I never got the chance to be scared.

Cousin Serena
Cousin Serena
13 years ago

I don’t know if this is your source o’trauma, but it sounds like the British Film Vault of Horror.  In it, one of the stories is about a painter who goes to a voodoo priest who tells him he has the power to get back at his enemies, who have been taking advantage of him.  He paints portraits of them and then stabs out the eyes or does something else that results in an accident that kills the victim.  The artist has a self portrait that he keeps hidden away, but whaile he’s out ***SPOILER ALERT***A painter outside his artist’s garret knocks a can of turpentine through the skylight and it pours over the self portrait.  I believe the painter’s face is then rearranged by a double decker bus.  Heh heh heh!