The Halloween Channel
There's a Sci-Fi (now SyFy) Channel. Why
not a horror channel?
Halloween is year-round for so many of us. We need a channel that
caters to the rest of us.
Note: I wasn't aware at the
time I came up with this idea that there was something similar called
Chiller. Unfortunately, my cable provider doesn't carry it
(though it is available in the area via Direct TV and Dish Network,
apparently). However, I reviewed their program schedules and
was sorely disappointed at how far short this fell from my vision for
what a horror-themed network could offer. I realize that budget
is always a consideration in any endeavor of scale, but a larger factor
is the imagination to develop and package together offerings that
appeal to the broadest audience, including attracting non-horror fans
into the fold on a regular basis.
Much of the groundwork for the programming on
this channel has been done already. Many of the pages on this
site go into greater detail about content, and links to those pages are
added where appropriate.
Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter - Adaptations of stories by Laurell
- Adaptation of the comic magazine anti-hero.
H.P. Lovecraft Theater - Adaptations of short stories ( e.g.,
The Shadow Out of Time, The Rats in the Walls).
Continuance - Psychic lawyer is the only person who can
represent the dead. Ghosts talk to him, and works on their behalf
to protect their living relatives. Pro bono ex post facto.
Ghosttown - Drama about ghosts in a Western town haunting
The Wolf Pack - Group of werewolves act as an urban vigilante
gang against supernatural predators (including their own), but there is
trouble in the ranks as members vie for the position of leader of the
Mostly Ghostly - Sitcom about ghosts sharing a crypt.
Frankenbride - Mad scientist finds that making the perfect woman
is more art than science.
Unreal Estate - "Haunted" houses around the country.
Witches' Kitchen - Cross between The View and a Martha
Stewart-type show: Halloween decorations, party food, how to throw a
The Ouiji Board - Talk show gathers panel of people in the
horror movie business to talk about their exploits in Hollywood and
offer opinions on their craft.
Survivors - Putative causes of an zombie apocalypse and how to
Screams and Groans - Reviews of the latest sci-fi/horror movies
coming to the big screen or disc. Good films receive a "scream"
while bad ones get a "groan."
Haunted Tours - London's Whitechapel Ripper Tour, Edinburgh's
Haunted Tour (included the original bodysnatchers, Jekyll and Hyde, and
the plague), and various catacombs.
The Reel Story (or maybe Final
Cut) - How to make a
horror movie. (Six-part mini-series. Details in "additional
notes" section below.)
Monster Mash (aka Trash Mashers) - Making props out of
junk. (Competition show) (Examples here.)
Scares - Hidden-camera reality show in which people are pranked
in ways that scare them. Halloween, horror, and monster themes
are prevalent in the premise of each prank.
Horror trivia - Contestants are tied up and forced to compete in
a demented version of "Don't Forget Your Toothbrush" or face mock
executions and other terrifying ordeals (e.g., being dropped in a pit
of snakes, insects, etc.) (Quiz show)
Project Blacklight - Competition to make a complete haunted
house attraction built around a weekly theme (e.g., slashers, circus,
etc.). (Competition show)
Locked in a Haunted House - Duh. (Competition show)
Zombie Chase - Game show version of the "zombie runs" around the
country in which contestants are chased through obstacle courses.
Weapons (i.e., paintball guns) are hidden in caches scattered
throughout the terrain.
Sandman - Adaptation of the comic book series written by Neil
Creepy - An animated anthology of horror features based on the
classic B&W horror magazine.
Gamma World - CGI series based on the RPG set in a distant post-apocalyptic future. Features robots,
aliens, and mutants, mutants, mutants
galore! (Think Star Wars:
Clone Wars with more monsters and explosions.)
Fangoria TV (or Cinefantastique;
horror news - Features about up-coming horror
movies, novels, and tv series.
Famous Monsters of Filmland - Featurettes about the classic
News/current events reporting
be included in the above news programs, depending on the format chosen.
in Salem, MA
in Oak Lawn (Dallas, TX) (Example images here.)
Sexy vampire girl - Focus is on
horror movies. Set in a castle or old house.
scientist guy - Focus is on sci-fi movies. Set in a lab
with lots of equipment.
(For detailed production notes, see here.)
Behind the Screams - The making of famous horror movies.
Classic tv shows - Scooby Doo, The Addams Family, The Munsters,
The Director's Chair - Exploring the approach and style of
famous horror directors: William Castle, Roger Corman, George Romero,
Tobe Hooper, John Carpenter, Don Coscarelli, Tim Burton, etc.
Sci-fi/Horror Movie Hosts - Elvira, Vampira, Morgus the
Magnificent, John Zacherley, MST3K, etc.
Written in Blood - Horror writers: Edgar Allan Poe, H.P.
Lovecraft, Stephen King, Clive Barker, R.L. Stine, Forrest J. Ackerman,
Class Acts - Actors: Lon Chaney, Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff,
Vincent Price, Lon Chaney, Jr., Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee, etc.
Effects and Make-up artists and designers - Jack Pierce, Ray
Harryhausen, Stan Winston, Rick Baker, Tom Savini, H.R. Giger, etc.
Studios and other media entities - Universal Studios, Hammer
Films, EC Comics, other horror comics (and artists), General Mills'
monster cereals (answer important questions like whatever happened to
Yummy Mummy and Fruit Brute), etc.
History - Halloween, monsters: Vampires, Werewolves, the
Frankenstein story (in its many incarnations), etc.
Special topics - One-off shows;
Part II can be made if there is enough source material.
Trailer Park - Looking at the history of trailers to bad movies
Horror movies vs. their remakes (List of many horror remakes can
be found here.)
Cool Halloween toys - e.g., Mighty Men & Monster Maker.
Action figures - by NECA, Diamond, Sideshow, etc.
Horror prop collections - Forrest J. Ackerman's, etc.
Halloween and folklore
Halloween traditions - Trick or Treating, costume parties,
Jack o'lantern carving, etc. (See discussion here.)
Halloween vs. religion
What makes a monster? - Organized around the traits found in
monsters (e.g., resurrections, strength, etc.) (See discussion here.)
Halloween candy - History of various candies, how it's made,
Disney's Haunted Mansion - History of its creation and a tour of
the attraction, both inside and out. (See discussion of
Retro commercials - Compilation of ads for toys, candy, cereal
(GM monster cereal), costumes, etc.
Costume tutorials - Examples from fandom, conventions, etc.
Make-up design competitions
The best-decorated houses - All the ones you see on the local
news, only made national. Plus some notable attractions such as
the Munster Mansion in Waxahatchie, TX.
- Features sketch comedy, interviews, and musical guests from
various horror and sci-fi realms.
Band profiles - A look at the stage shows, album artwork,
equipment (e.g., coffin-shaped guitars/basses), musical stylings, and
song/lyrical inspiration of "Halloween" artists: The Ghastly Ones, Rob
Zombie, Alice Cooper, The Misfits, Danny Elfman, The Nekromantix and
The HorrorPops (shared members), Zombie Girl, Marilyn Manson.
(See discussion of Halloween music here.)
Behind the Curtain - The backstory of famous horror-themed
musicals: Rocky Horror, Corpse
Bride, Little Shop of Horrors, Nudist Colony Of The Dead, Phantom of
the Paradise, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, The
Nightmare Before Christmas. (See list of Halloween-themed
Original musicals - Documenting the production of musicals that
have never been filmed such as Evil
Dead: The Musical and A
Shoggoth on the Roof.
Modern adaptations of classic
novels/stories - Made
current, set in present-day
of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
House of the Seven Gables by
Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
by Robert Louis Stevenson
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar
Dracula by Bram Stoker
Lair of the White Worm by Bram
Le Fantôme de l'Opéra (The
Phantom of the Opera) by Gaston Leroux
The Island of Doctor Moreau by H.G.
The Invisible Man by H.G. Wells
Food of the Gods and How It Came to Earth
by H.G. Wells
The Call of Cthulhu by H.P. Lovecraft
At the Mountains of Madness by H.P.
Herbert West, Reanimator by H.P. Lovecraft
The Dunwich Horror by H.P. Lovecraft
The Shadow Over Innsmouth by H.P. Lovecraft
Adaptations of modern novels
Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury
The Damnation Game (1985) by Clive Barker
Weaveworld (1987) by Clive Barker
The Great and Secret Show (1989) by Clive
Imajica (1991) by Clive Barker
The Thief of Always (1992) by Clive Barker
The Mummy (1989) by Anne Rice
Lullaby (2002) by Chuck Palahniuk
Diary (2003) by Chuck Palahniuk
Haunted (2005) by Chuck Palahniuk
Damned (2011) by Chuck Palahniuk
Additional authors to consider: Dean
Koontz and Robert McCammon
Short story adaptations - Sixty
minute anthology show. Untitled.
Monkey's Paw (1902) by W.W. Jacobs
Dracula's Guest (1914) by Bram Stoker
The Fall of the House of Usher (1839) by
Edgar Alan Poe
The Murders in the Rue Morgue (1841) by
Edgar Alan Poe
The Masque of the Red Death (1842) by
Edgar Alan Poe
The Black Cat (1843) by Edgar Alan Poe
The Tell-Tale Heart (1843) by Edgar Alan
The Cask of Amontillado (1846) by Edgar
The Pit and the Pendulum (1843) by Edgar
Additional authors to consider: Stephen
King (see his collections of short stories) and Clive Barker (see the
six volumes of his Books of Blood)
H.P. Lovecraft (mentioned as H.P.
Lovecraft Theater above).
Original programming mentioned above will be slotted into these
sections, but syndicated shows are mentioned here to give a sense of
the tone of the programming.
Morning - Blocks of cartoons
Doo, Where Are You?
The Real Ghostbusters
The Addams Family
Monster Squad (1976)
The Groovie Goolies
Afternoon - Soap operas and
re-runs of classic tv series.
The Twilight Zone
The Outer Limits
Alfred Hitchcock Presents
Kolchak: The Night Stalker
Tales from the Darkside
[Plus original programming]
Prime-time - Modern tv shows.
The Outer Limits (1995 version)
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Dead Like Me
The Walking Dead
American Horror Story
Late-night programming - Horror
hosts shows (two of these on Fri/Sat) and one on other nights.
(Episode list here.)
Elvira's Movie Macabre (Episode list here.)
Mystery Science Theater 3000 (MST3K) (Episode list here.)
Morgus Presents (Episode list here.)
Joe Bob Briggs' Drive-In Theater and
Monstervision (with Joe Bob Briggs)
(Episode list here.)
Cinema Insomnia (with Mr. Lobo) (Episode list here.)
[Plus original programming]
The Halloween Channel will break away from standard scheduling from
time to time for marathons and other special events.
Tv series marathons - Six-hour blocks of classic anthology
series (e.g., Twilight Zone, Outer
Limits) from 10am to 4pm (Central).
Best episode marathons - The episodes voted the best of various
Movies series marathons - The best films from notable horror
franchises (e.g., Halloween, Hellraiser, etc.).
Vamp Week - Vampire movies all week long (much like Shark Week on Discovery).
Frankenweek - Similar with a Frankenstein-themed marathon.
Depending on how the material is treated, these could range from
one-hour specials to multi-hour marathon blocks of programming, much
like the countdowns on VH1.
Halloween's greatest hits countdown - Monster Mash, Ghostbusters, Thriller,
proposed "greatest hits" list here.)
Halloween novelty songs - Hosted by Dr. Demento.
The essential horror movies - You must see these before you
die. (See a list here.)
The essential sci-fi movies - You must see these before the
robots take over (or aliens invade). (See a list here.)
The best sci-fi and horror tv shows - Trek, Buffy, etc. (See a list
Universal monster movies - Frankenstein,
This Island Earth, Tarantula, etc. (See
a list here.)
Movie Slashers - Jason, Freddy, Leatherface, Tall Man, Pinhead,
Halloween traditions countdowns:
Halloween candy - Candy apples, caramel corn, gummi body parts,
Halloween tv specials - Great
Pumpkin, Fat Albert, Bugs Bunny's Howl-Oween Special, etc.
Halloween episodes of tv series - The best moments of network tv
cashing in on the holiday.
from old tv shows - e.g., Bill Mumy from The Twilight Zone (among other
Horror Picture Show - Shown at midnight on the Saturday before
Halloween night. Features audience participation footage (this
has been done before during VH1 airings), a host delivering trivia and
explaining the usage of props, etc.
Trick r' Treat
Halloween marathon - The movie series
Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown! (1966)
The Fat Albert Halloween Special (1977)
Bugs Bunny's Howl-Oween Special (1978)
Original programming covering
Halloween-related events (Noted above under the heading of News
Halloween in Salem, MA
Halloween in Oak Lawn (Dallas, TX)
Nightmare Before Christmas (of course!)
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (well, it
features an Abominable Snowman and an island full of Misfit Toys)
Silent Night, Deadly Night marathon
horror movie - Mini-series
Focus is on broad techniques but with specific
emphasis to the tricks employed in horror films.
Part I: screenwriting and financing
Part II: casting/directing - How to find the next
Part III: lighting and sound - How to film mostly dark,
coloring scenes, etc.
Part IV: sets and special effects: blood, animatronic
props, mask-making, etc.
Part V: cameras (hardware, use) and editing - How to
build suspense and do reveals.
Part VI: marketing and promotion - Using the web,
confusing fact and fiction (a la Blair Witch mythology).
Halloween and horror documentaries -
These have already been made and are ready to air. (See longer
American Scary (2006) - About horror
Movie (1999) - The making of a low-budget indie horror film.
Worst Movie (2009) - About Troll
Monsterama (2003) - 24 episodes
(about 15 minutes each).
Horror Hosts (2004)
from the Crypt: From Comic Books to Television (2004)
Will Rot Your Brain: How the Monster Kids Transformed Popular Culture
Aurora Monsters: The Model Craze That Gripped the World (2010)
The Movie (2006)
additional ideas from Leiann. Updated 2013.