Monday, October 31, 2005


Well, here I am on All Hallow's Eve haunting the ol' library. Found out today that Hallowe'en is also known as Pooky Night in some places, which is decidedly unscary. Although, it does have a cute ring to it. Pooky Night. Ok, from now on I'm calling it Pooky Night.

When I was but a wee lad, I remember watching some Disney Pooky Night special with clips from Disney films/shows set to music like ELO's Evil Woman, CCR's Bad Moon Risin', Rockwell's Somebody's Watching You, and Stevie Wonder's Superstition. It was all diabolically narrated by the evil "mirror-mirror-on-the-wall" from Snow White. The most frightening clip was from Disney's adaptation of Washington Irving's The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. In the scene, poor Ichabod Crane is chased through the menacing forest by the unstoppable Headless Horseman, and it culminates with the horseman rearing and throwing his flaming pumpkin head at the camera. Now, both the original short story and the Disney short film add a little epilogue that reassuring admits that Ichabod Crane's disappearance is likely due to his self-exile out of sheer embarrassment. However, in the Hallowe'en special, the clip is truncated and ends with him apparently murdered in a blaze of pumpkin inferno by the evil headless spirit. Ah, wholesome family fun.

Another treat from the special was an abbreviated version of Bing Crosby's Headless Horseman from the 1949 Disney adaptation. For years this tune would crop up in my head, but it wasn't until last year that I watched the whole film (now on DVD) while doing a group presentation on adapations of Sleepy Hollow for a film class. So here's Bing Crosby's awesome The Headless Horseman and even a cover of that song by Kay Starr, which came out not long after.

Bing Crosby - The Headless Horseman
Kay Starr - The Headless Horseman

Bonus Pooky Night cover:
Ian Brown - Thriller

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