After going to see The Horror! The Horror! and failing to be horrified, I spent the rest of the evening at Wilton’s Music Hall discussing exactly what it was that we all found scary as those around me swapped ghost stories and spooky happenings from their pasts. Cynic that I am, I really haven’t had any kind of experiences like that and so I’d be rubbish around the campfire, but it did get me thinking about what it is that I do find scary – little children ghosts mainly, and puppets trying to be lifelike – and whether any cultural medium can really capture that hairs-on-end feeling.
Theatre hasn’t really worked for me this Hallowe’en (the less said about The Revenger’s Tragedy the better) so I thought I’d watch a few DVDs that purport to have that spooky edge. The Awakening and The Woman In Black were both feature films from last year, The Turn of the Screw was shown on TV in 2009 and Marchlands, the only one of these that I had previously watched, was broadcast last year too. And no, this whole exercise wasn’t invented just as a reason to watch Elliot Cowan on screen again. Honest.
So what sends shivers running up and down your spine on stage or on screen, do let me know.