Shows to Make You Scream
Don’t just throw away your Halloween night if you can’t find plans; sit back and (try to) relax while watching one of these six hair-raising TV shows.
By Ashley Wertz, University of Pittsburgh
Halloween may be on a Monday this year, but that’s not stopping anyone from turning up all Halloweekend.
I will not be one of those individuals. I’m an introvert; let’s just get that out of the way. My ideal Halloween experience is holing up in my house and eating a bag of assorted mini chocolate bars while watching horror movies. I’ll leave the house parties to my peers, but I’m not above blasting “Spooky Scary Skeletons” while making those awesome pumpkin print sugar cookies (you know the ones). But I want to switch it up a bit this year and watch some of my all time favorite shows that get me into the Halloween spirit.
Watch If You’re in the Mood For: Zombies & Angst
If you don’t want to cry, I don’t suggest watching this show. But maybe you’re a stronger person than I am, which isn’t that high of a bar in the first place. “In the Flesh” follows Kieren Walker, a young man afflicted with “Partially Deceased Syndrome.” PDS is just a fancy term for “being a zombie.” Unlike the infected in shows like “The Walking Dead,” PDS sufferers can be treated and integrated back into society. As you’ve probably guessed, reintroducing people who have eaten other people does not go over so well, especially in Kieren’s close-minded and radically religious small town.
Honestly, everything about this show is heartbreaking. The soundtrack composed of many slow and sad Keaton Henson songs and the constant grey background of the British countryside are enough to get the tear ducts flowing. But it’s not all gloomy. In fact, the rabid zombies, or “rotters” if you will, are terrifying. However, the show doesn’t make you suffer without any rewards. Things work out pretty well in the end for some people. I’m just bitter this unparalleled masterpiece only got two seasons.
Watch If You’re in the Mood For: Light-hearted Humor With a Deep Twist
At first glance, “Gravity Falls” is a quirky cartoon about the summer misadventures of two twins visiting their great uncle, the owner of a tourist trap “The Mystery Shack.” Though the Mystery Shack itself is a scam, the town of Gravity Falls is anything but normal.
The series starts with a less serious and wacky tone, facing down monsters like a horde of gnomes and a mechanical lake monster. But as the show progresses, the plot becomes mildly terrifying in an existential crisis sort of way. I can’t claim this show is going to give you nightmares because it probably won’t, but it’s the best option for anyone who isn’t really into having nightmares.
Watch If You’re in the Mood For: The Perfect Throwback
Do you ever have random flashbacks from a show you used to watch when you were barely sentient? Because “Mystery Hunters” is the show that has, for some reason, lodged itself into my long-term memory. If, like most of the human race, you forgot about this show, let me refresh your memory.
“Mystery Hunters” is kind of like one of those History Channel specials about the Chupacabra or Mothman, but with less of a documentary style and geared toward a younger audience. Two teenagers travel the globe and investigate mysteries, folk tales, urban legends and UFO sightings to see if there’s any truth behind the stories that haunt people each day. I’ve always been a fan of cryptids and aliens so I still enjoy the hell out of this show. And even if it doesn’t creep you out, you’ll still get to bask in the glory of the amazing early-2000s fashion.
Watch If You’re in the Mood For: Laughing at Zak Bagans
Whether you’re a believer or not, “Ghost Adventures” is a wild ride. From Zak Bagans trying to fight ghosts and demons to the team forcing Aaron Goodwin to stay in the creepiest site of the investigation by himself, there’s something for the whole family.
The “Ghost Adventures” crew has been all over the place, so there’s no lack of content. From the bloody battlefield of Gettysburg to Bobby Mackey’s Music World, the gang’s got it all covered. Understandably, this show is not everyone’s cup of tea. Ghost hunting shows are generally known for their melodramatic scenes and seemingly obvious explanations. The key to watching is to invite a few friends and laugh at it.
Watch If You’re in the Mood For: Death Scenes & Plot Twists
It’s been seven years since Abby Mills set foot on her secluded home of Harper’s Island. You’d probably be hesitant too if said home was part of a series of grisly murders, including the death of your own mother. But when your childhood best friend is getting married it just has to be in the gloomiest, least escapable place possible.
To the chagrin of all involved, wedding guests start getting picked off one by one in horrendous ways, which involves a lot of stabbing and decapitation as well as one unlucky fellow who shoots himself in the leg on accident.
Since it’s only thirteen episodes, you can binge it with ease over the weekend. But be warned, you might need to grab some more tissues for this one, assuming you’ve already used them up for “In the Flesh.”
Watch If You’re in the Mood For: Aesthetically-Pleasing & Spooky
In my humble opinion, nothing encompasses the melancholy spirit of autumn quite as well as “Over the Garden Wall,” a mini series about a pair of brothers who get lost in a strange early 1900s aesthetic world on Halloween night. They encounter strange individuals on their quest to find their way home, including a community of pumpkin people and a talking blue bird named Beatrice.
The show is funny at times, but is mostly shrouded by a haze of gloom from the subdued colors and sense of being constantly watched by an unseen force. Honestly it’s downright nightmare-inducing at some points too. If I haven’t convinced you yet, then consider this: Elijah Wood singing a ludicrous song.