1970’s PSA Ad Featuring Peter Pumpkin

This Peter Pumpkin PSA is a great example of how many retro treats remain to be discovered. I stumbled upon this late 70s TV commercial thanks to attempting to find a monster related ad. There is something special about these animated public service announcements from back in the day.

I suppose it might be the lightness – the jovial character of Peter Pumpkin even. While getting across very important safety tips for even kids today it remains upbeat. Fun.

You certainly have no need to take my word for it. Set aside the mere 30 seconds it takes to watch it for yourself!


This PSA featuring Peter Pumpkin was something of a mystery.

I am being totally honest. You might have noticed from the video it is listed as being from 1985. Back in 2011 though a forum user calling themselves Gobby Gruesome was asking for help finding the ad on the Halloween Forums. They totally recalled the appearance of Peter Pumpkin and what he was getting across to kids but not the exact year.

Thankfully someone came across Robatsea2009’s upload on YouTube and set Gobby Gruesome’s mind to ease. This caused quite a few comments on the video itself and it looks like this ad probably debuted around 1978. For myself this is actually the first time I’ve ever seen this PSA, although I certainly remember a 1977 ad that stood out. I still swear that the narrator for that PSA is Carrie Fisher!

I might add that if the name Gobby Gruesome sounds familiar it is because of the Flintstones. Gobby is the child of none other than the Gruesomes – those spooky neighbors of the famous animated family. Why not take a couple of minutes to see how Gobby’s pet spider gets along with Fred Flintstone?

[Via] Joe Francia

A Song in the Key of Death!

As Halloween is rapidly approaching on flaming hooves of demonic delight, my mind starts workin’ overtime to create the perfect soundtrack to the holiday (o.k., you caught me, this is the kind of crap the ol’ Ouija Board Kid thinks about year ‘round).

...shock ya 'til the sparks fly...

…shock ya ’til the sparks fly…

So, naturally I can’t help but look back upon all of those classic rock n’ roll influenced horror films of years past as a source of inspiration, and what better representation of that genre than 1986’s Trick or Treat? Nothing screams Halloween more than an undead satanic rock singer foiled (in part) by a toilet with the lid up.

And now I give you the (singing) voice of Sammi Curr, Dave King, along with the rest of Fastway performing After Midnight! Get those horns in the air creeps!

Disney’s Halloween Hall o’Fame

I’m a huge fan of A Disney Halloween/Disney’s Halloween Treat. I’ve posted about it before. I’ve even done my own podcast about it. But recently, while searching YouTube for videos about it, I stumbled upon something similar that I had either forgotten or never knew existed: Disney’s Halloween Hall o’ Fame.

I may or may not have seen this special. It seemed familiar to me, and I almost remember being shown it in middle school, but I can’t tell if these memories are real or just the phantom memories I often experience. In any case, the special stars Jonathan Winters as a Disney security guard. He finds himself in a room full of Disney props one Halloween night. He cuts up Jonathan Winters-style for a little bit, and then comes across a crystal ball in which he sees a talking jack o’lantern (also Winters) who introduces a handful of classic Disney Halloween cartoons: “Trick or Treat”, “Pluto’s Judgment Day”, and “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”.

I honestly didn’t care for this one as much as I did A Disney Halloween/Disney’s Halloween Treat. There was less content and I just found Winters’ shtick to be tiresome. Still, it’s got those great Disney shorts. Not only so, but some YouTube hero has remastered both this and Disney’s Halloween Treat so that they are sharper and more vibrant (in contrast, my version of Disney’s Halloween Treat is so faded it is nearly unwatchable). You can find his channel and all the remastered videos here.


Something that always scared me as a kid were silhouettes. There something about knowing someone is just on the other side of a curtain but not being able to tell who it is that was always unnerving to me. Maybe that comes from having watching Psycho one too many times as a kid.

Hallowindow is a series of Halloween videos that are designed to be projected on to a sheet-covered window in your home on Halloween night. The videos come in both “normal” and “mirror-imaged” formats, so if you’re projecting from the rear, the words will not appear backwards when viewed from outside your home. Each video is only a few minutes long, but they’re long enough that the average trick-or-treater will not see the same thing twice.

Again to clarify; the projector is inside the house, projecting the videos on to a sheet which is also hung inside the house, covering the window. This footage (courtesy of Youtube’s alsautoandappliance) was shot from outside the home, as it would appear to trick-or-treaters.

The videos are available on physical DVDs, or as direct digital downloads. Last year, I bought all four downloadable packages (Hallowindow I-IV), set them up as a playlist on my laptop, connected my laptop to my projector, and let them run in a loop all night long. We also cracked open our window and put a pair of computer speakers up to the screen, to play the spooky soundtrack as well.

As a result, this is what my front yard looked like last Halloween, all night long:


Hallowindow was a huge success! Kids were frightened by it (in a good way — there’s nothing too scary or gory in the videos), and adults absolutely loved it! Every time I checked, parents were outside (usually in the street) watching the entire video loop.

We’ll definitely have the Hallowindow video loops running again this Halloween. In a time where fewer and fewer people each year seem to participate in trick-or-treating, I love adding something to my neighborhood and giving the visiting kids (and adults!) something to remember.