Yet ANOTHER TV Terrors Episode everyone!!!

Yes Dear HorrorFiends! The very first review of an Are You Afraid of the Dark Episode…and NO! it is not that damn clown episode.

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A Farewell to FEARNET – By Sterling Anno

Fearnet - RIPAlas, yet another network provided soldier has fallen in this current age of innovation and commercial damnation. We’ve lost many as of late, some clocks were ticking all along, while others simply went before their time had come. I’ve seen the once amazing TechTV devolve into the what was then known as G4, only to then succumb to it’s own identity crisis and vanish once its main assets were cast aside in the same manner as M. Night Shyamalan’s public stature. I’ve seen IFC, a channel once known for it’s basic cable screenings of uncut R rated material and the free speech cannon of Henry Rollins, shoot itself in the foot with the elimination of the latter and replacing it with reruns of Malcolm in the Middle, among other 3rd party shareware the channel would have never touched if it’s integrity hadn’t been compromised at the end of the last decade. Even my own favorite Documentary Channel has caught a flesh eaten disease. It has since gone through reconstructive surgery and reemerged as nothing more than a trendy pop-politics propaganda network convincing us why SOPA may not have been all that bad…(fuck you Pivot). But now, with tis latest casualty in our arsenal of entertainment all but lost, I can officially say that my overall selection of viewing material has seen far better days.

Fearnet was a great one. A horror website that conquered its frontier and moved on to invade the idiot box shortly after. A channel that stood out of an already endangered selection of horror themed tv networks, Fearnet will always be remembered for pushing for the extra mile. Providing the both young & old with the Eerie Indianas and Cryptkeepers of our past, it was the horror fan’s version of “The 90s Are All That”. Their highly outside the box promotional campaigns, their extremely fun and over the top comic convention presence, and of course, their attempt at establishing an empire of original televised content are all aspects that proved it was built on a fanbase and not a trend. Fearnet garnered its namesake through the simple act of giving an actual shit about its followers and providing them with material they wanted, whether or not it was ever deserved. Though the channel had its downsides in the field of censorship, exchanging the occasional F-bomb for the ability to reach out to and bestow its blessings upon a wider audience, one can only analyze the trade as noble. Through them we had received films seldom seen by the light of day and a series that they gave to us out of the love in their black hearts. And might I add that the visual experience of “Holliston” was but the rarest of phenomenons. As someone who sees modern television as nothing more than a fish tank with slightly more going on than a couple laps around the coral reef, seeing a new show I can honestly call a new personal favorite is too obscure to fathom. Regardless of one’s opinion on that show, the channel’s selection of films or its individualistic approach to its fans, Fearnet had something for everyone, and in return everyone was made happy. This of course is why Comcast destroyed it(tossing its remaining assets to SyFy and Chiller respectively). Because according to this company, humanity can’t have anything nice, nor convenient to contemporary society. This is of course why they recently shot the internet in the head as well. All in all, Fearnet’s thunder may have dissipated, but the lightning will never truly be erased from existence… For this motherfucker has scarred far too many minds to be truly forgotten, for better or worse. In other words, for better. Always better.

– Sterling “The Spork Guy” Anno

TERROR TV AND HIDDEN HORROR – Cry Baby Lane

Cry Baby Lane“Song of the South” was a film made in 1946 that was later banned by Disney due to an insensitive plot revolving around a tall tale teller on a tenant farm. In recent years many people have discussed if the film should remain outlawed by same the company that birthed it. I’m not here to discuss that whatsoever, I’m simply here to shed light on a film with a very similar fate.

In the year 2000 Nickelodeon made a TV movie called “Cry Baby Lane,” which was to be aired on the week of Halloween. The film was basically an hour long “Are You Afraid of the Dark?” episode, with way too many commercial breaks in order to keep your attention span fighting with itself, like the awkward climax of an Eddie Murphy comedy. Well, the latter may have been true at least (except for any appearances by Mr. Murphy). However the plot was a bit more over the top than the aforementioned half hour campfire adventures via our very own midnight society. Instead of cold ghosts, holes in barrels or red clown nose hexes we had Frank Langella starring in the story of conjoined twins – one brother good, the other one conveniently evil. They eventually took ill and died together in one sloppy Picasso of a sibling C.H.U.D. Their creepy farmer father then took his trusty hacksaw and well, separated them at death. He buried the good twin in a cemetery and the bad twin in a random grave right outside the farm house. This is the story told in order to set up the main plot, which revolves around a group of kids trying to prove that this local legend is true.

Ok, ok, I know you may be disappointed that none of the gruesome story told in the film is actually seen on screen and that there is much more intense content out there than this, but hear me out. This was produced by Nickelodeon for Nickelodeon’s target child audience. That’s pretty fucked up! Needless to say the movie was aired once on October 28, 2000 and was never aired OR SPOKEN of again. The main and most valid rumor for this is that the sheer amount of parents who complained that their children had been lobotomized by a borderline PG-13 script had shamed the Nick name so much they wanted to forget they had ever produced the televised Polybius.

The film was forgotten for years to come. That is until 2011 when it resurfaced on Reddit, thus inspiring “The 90s Are All That” to re-air it for the first and only time since the new millennium. Before this film was re-aired many internet rumors had sprung up (right next to the lizard people and Man Bear Pig sections) claiming that the film was cursed, the creators were incarcerated and that the film was aired only in order to to conduct a mysterious ritual upon suburban America. Yeah, we all know it was just banned by Nick before more soccer moms tried to sue Viacom. No matter what the endless amounts of CreepyPastas tell you, it’s nothing more, nothing less. But don’t fret fellow 90’s kids, we all know what eventually happens to all banned children films… They become awesome log flume rides!

Happy New Year Everyone!

– Sterling “The Spork Guy” Anno