Halloween is the most under-rated holiday. Christmas seems to get all the glory, but without Halloween on the calendar, stores would probably put their Christmas stuff out in September- which would be really irritating.
So not only do I want to publicly thank Halloween for preventing that mess, I’d also like to share some of my favorite Halloween-related things in hopes of helping this holiday get the respect it deserves.
This is my Halloween Hall O’Fame
Best Movie: The Nightmare Before Christmas
Jack, the Pumpkin King tries to improve Christmas by kidnapping Santa Claus and taking over. A Tim Burton masterpiece!
Honorable Mention: Disney’s The Haunted Mansion
Best Book: Coraline
Written by Neil Gaiman, this thing is super creepy but so cool!! No details given here- you have to read it yourself!
Honorable Mention: The Graveyard Book, also by Gaiman.
Best Short Film: Thriller
Decades later, Michael Jackson’s MTV dominating mini movie is still fun to watch. And the dance scenes are still imitated constantly. Watch it at the link above.
Honorable Mention: It’s The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown
Best Smell: A carving pumpkin right after you cut the top open.
It’s weird but unique.
Honorable Mention: Fallen leaves
Best Activity: Hot dogs, apple cider and friends around a fire on a cool night.
Honorable Mention: sitting on the porch handing out trick or treats
Best Music: Danse Macabre by Camille Saint-Saens
In this story-like orchestral masterpiece, Death enters the cemetery, tunes up his violin and leads a festive, all-night dance party. Find more details on this blog post.
Honorable Mention: A Night On Bald Mountain
I voted all of these things into the Halloween Hall myself, without consulting anybody. Would your list look different? Let me know in the comments!
For more stories and articles, follow me at my Five O’Clock Shadow blog and also at Wise & Shine Magazine.
32 thoughts on “Halloween Hall O’ Fame”
Ohhhh….thank you for the nudge about “Coraline”…I’ve wanted to read it for the longest time. I love a good creepy tale — and by Neil Gaiman? Yes! Thanks, Todd! 😉
My daughter bugged me to read it for a long time- I’m glad I finally did!
Thriller is possibly the best music videos ever made! Love nightmare before Christmas too. Will have to read Coraline. Completely agree with you about delaying Christmas decorations. I reckon they shouldn’t be allowed to put or play anything Christmas related until December 1st (at the earliest). Thanks for the great list/recommendations Todd 🙏
Thanks AP! 🎃
Halloween is one of my all time favorites too! I host a party every year and it’s really all about the costumes from there! My husband always builds elaborate decorations in our front lawn and I go all out in the house! Everything spooky! Love it too!
That sounds fun- love it!
The smell of a freshly carved pumpkin – “weird, but unique.” Ha! So true! Fun post, Todd!
Thank you! Even though I like that smell, I’m glad they don’t make any “pumpkin gut” perfume or cologne! 😁🎃
I’d never thought about the smell of a pumpkin before this post. Thanks for a fun wrap-up, Todd!
Nothing says October like a nose full of pumpkin goop still in its shell 😂🎃
I am a huge book lover…I used to like horror especially during the days of John Saul and haven’t read in a while.. I am going to read Coraline.
Great! It’s very good! Not a gruesome horror tale, but just very creepy and interesting.
Todd, really, Christmas stuff does appear in August in many places. None the less, you’ve showcased some excellent choices. My wife had the chase to work with Gaiman at a writers’ conference hosted by Rutgers in 2019. Remarkable fellow.
Two thumbs up with a side a jealousy for your wife getting to work with Gaiman! 👍👍
Around here, I’ve only seen August Christmas stuff at Costco. I guess my luck is running out 😅. Thanks for reading Vic!
Pre-Covid, Rutgers was building a world-class writers conference held in June of each year. She went twice while we were still living in NJ. I don’t recall all the names now, but absolutely stellar.
That sounds excellent! I live about 2-3 hours drive from Rutgers.
ruwritersrutgerscon.rutgers.edu. The website mentions Billy Collins and Jane Smiley as speakers, but that may be old as I know Lyn met with Collins.
Thanks for the link! 😎
Collins actually read one of Lyn’s poems aloud at one of the breakout sessions.
Tim Burton’s movie is extraordinary! Thank you for reminding it to me, I will watch it again.
Thanks Cristiana- somewhere on Netflix there’s a short documentary on how they made that movie and some of the troubles they encountered- that’s fascinating too !
I’ll look for it, my husband will be super happy 😃 thank you!
Agreed. Halloween is definitely an underrated holiday but it’ll pick up as we dictate the priority of the culture. In this case I think it’s tradition. Thanks for sharing!
Thanks for reading! 😎
Todd, your post hits home. Something about the festive energy of Halloween ushering in the holiday season. Gives me goosebumps. You’re right in my wheelhouse with this one! Thank you!
Thank you Steve! 🎃👻
Fuge, don’t forget that Halloween is the gateway to the holiday season, and it doesn’t involve buying gifts or cards, just candy. My favorite holiday by a long shot.
Good point Jay!