Even today, I can barely bring myself to utter more than the names of these things that terrified me as a child, lest I begin screaming and crying for my teddy bear:
- Fembots (the types found on THE BIONIC WOMAN)
- Sleestak (LAND OF THE LOST)
- The alien muppets and their goddamn ringing phone (SESAME STREET)
There’s no way I can quantify these and put them in order of terrifying-ness, because they all scared the shit out of me.
But one -another one from SESAME STREET, no less- needs explanation: it was an animated bit, where a rock-like “IF” fell to the earth, with some truly terrifying music playing in the background. I think the music is from 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY, but I’m not 100% sure of that. I’ve looked for this on youtube and have had no luck tracking it down to see if it still scares me the way it did. Talk about terrifying; I’m still not a huge fan of the musical piece.
And thank God I didn’t know about JON PERTWEE’s DOCTOR WHO and his autons back when I was but a wee girl, or they would have won hands down as most terrifying…Christ almighty.
UNK SEZ: Mickelodeon, that 2001 animated bit freaked the hell out of me too! In fact, after a traumafession from our pal AMANDA BY NIGHT on that crazy bouncing “Rover” ball from THE PRISONER, yours truly left this comment:
Rover does freak me out. It’s so otherworldly and surreal. They used to have an ongoing bit on THE ELECTRIC COMPANY that gave me the same feeling. It was a take off on 2001 but having not seen that film at the time I had no idea. It was just a cartoon of a monolith that broke apart revealing different words. The one that haunted me was “ALL”. It hurt my little brain to think of “ALL”
I can’t find that one but here is the one for “ME” which is equally unsettling and hurts my slightly larger brain…
I don’t know why a shape would give me the willies, but it’s so out of place and unusual (Rover is the same way) that it just feels like there is some larger force at work that you can’t get your head around. Sort of like a house pet’s response to a vacuum cleaner.
As it turns out these animated monolith bits were shown on both SESAME STREET and THE ELECTRIC COMPANY! SESAME STREET aired two different shorts and THE ELECTRIC COMPANY had nine. All that means is that as a kid back in the seventies, there was virtually no escape from Monolith horror!
To read more by Mickelodeon, be sure to check out her site Strange Cousin Susan.