Aunt John SEZ: We are in for a special treat today kids, as the proverbial traumafession lightening strikes twice at Kindertrauma Castle. Please give a warm Kindertrauma welcome to readers Patrick and Alexis as they separately recall the creep-tastic introduction to WPIX's Chiller Theater…
Reader Patrick SEZ:
It wasn't a specific movie that terrified me as a little kid, but the intro to scary movie night on WPIX Channel 11 in New York. In the '70s, on certain nights of the week at 11 pm, they would run the following bumper to introduce the flick:
Being 5 or 6 years old, I'd see that hand rise from the ground and hear that eerie music and run screaming from the room. Of course, there was no getting to sleep after that. I didn't even need to see the movie — the 20-second clip was enough to keep me awake and shaking!
Reader Alexis SEZ:
When I was somewhere between four and six there was a local channel in New York that played cheesy movies on weekend afternoons. There were karate flicks and westerns, and of course, old "B" horror movies. Whenever they played one of these films, it was presented by what the station called "Chiller Theater." It really didn't matter if whatever movie they were playing was scary or not, because, if it was Chiller, you were gonna be freaked out one way or another.
The reason for Chiller Theater's success rate was their graphic introduction, which was also used for going to commercial breaks (and, believe me, familiarity never took away from its effectiveness.) The segment was of a six-fingered hand coming out of the ground that, eventually, munched on the Chiller logo. You kinda just have to see it. And hear it. That's most important. Trust me, the sound effects are enough on their own. Seeing it again, I thought it might not have the same effect on me, but alas, I was dead wrong. It still creeped me out big time.
So thanks again, Kindertrauma, for helping me realize I might not be quite as desensitized as I thought. Keep up the good work!