October 2022: A Month in Horror

WENDELL & WILD – Kat (voiced by Lyric Ross). Cr: Netflix © 2022

Once again, horror fans were able to bathe in the annual glut of Halloweentime releases.  Some old monsters returned in the likes of Hellraiser, Halloween Ends, Werewolf By Night (based on the Marvel comic) and Terrifier 2 (the subject of dubious reports describing audience members allegedly vomiting and fainting). Perhaps the best-received revival was AMC’s Interview with the Vampire, adapted from the 1976 Anne Rice novel. A much earlier vampire classic also got another go-around courtesy of the audio drama Re: Dracula.

Newcomers to horror cinema include Prey for the Devil and Barbarian, the latter a sleeper hit. Also of note is Wendall & Wild, a horror-themed stop-motion collaboration between Henry Selick and Jordan Peele, which received positive reviews but, alas, seemingly negligible promotion. Elsewhere, big names brought their talents to horror series on Netflix: Guillermo del Toro opened his Cabinet of Curiosities while Mike Flannigan invited us to The Midnight Club.

Meanwhile, Netflix’s controversial Dahmer series — which launched last month — appears to have inspired a spike in Jeffrey Dahmer Halloween costumes, judging by the fact that eBay banned such outfits from being sold.

October 2022 was the month in which Velma from Scooby-Doo finally came out of the closet. Her big moment came in the animated film Trick or Treat Scooby Doo, and the thread will be picked up next year in Velma, an HBOMax cartoon aimed at older audiences. The teaser was released this month, riffing on Scream and drowning in self-awareness. Not long after the teaser went live, showrunner Mindy Kaling starred in her very own Daily Mail headline (“Woke mob descends on comedienne Mindy Kaling for LIKING tweet by JK Rowling, which saw author mock troll who attacked her stance on transgender rights”).

In other culture war news, Hocus Pocus 2 — released at the tail-end of September — was deemed a vessel of literal black magic by Jamie Gooch of Troy, Texas, whose comments on video went viral and even prompted a Saturday Night Live spoof.

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