Monday, October 4, 2010
Editorial October 2010 e-issue #16- 2nd Annual Halloween Special
The 1976 Paul Lynde Halloween Special...a trip back in time.
The year was 1976, and Halloween was still something to look forward to, at least for a little Horrorhead like myself. The smell of pumpkin spice in the air, a crisp NE Florida chilly wind, dark cloudy nights, and the wonderful sweet smell of cheap plastic horror masks and innocent young sweat underneath dangerously inflammable dollar store costumes,
and the sure knowledge that there such things as witches and devils on that one special night of the year. Back then, me and my little brother loved two things more than even Christmas: Halloween and the rock band KISS. We were full fledged members of the KISS. Army, devoted to the supposedly satanic rock and rollers, with loud music about sex, drugs and rock and roll and their (for us, anyway) scary madeup visages. There was an edge, a danger, to them that appealed to most kids- the same kids, like me, who also loved to watch wrestling, and believed in its simplistic good vs. evil cartoon showdowns.
TV was still the medium of choice for most middle-America, seeing as how cable TV hadn't made it to most of the country yet, but in 1976, there was a transitional thing going on in TV showbiz. It was a business filled with producers who admired, and wanted to capitalize on, what KISS was: a horror show with music; but most of the TV money was still being routed into cheesy holiday specials (if you remember the Star Wars Christmas Special, then you know what I mean). So that's how KISS, the hottest rock and roll band on the planet in the year 1976, became the special musical guests on one of the cheesiest holiday specials ever conceived and produced, The Paul Lynde Halloween Special.
Paul Lynde was, let's face it, one hell of a funny guy. He didn't exactly jump out of the closet, but he also didn't do much to hide his homosexual lifestyle. In fact, he used the country's fascination with the gay man to his benefit, used it to spice up his comedy routines. Having been a regular in film and television for several decades, including one of his most memorable recurring roles on Bewitched as Smanatha's prank loving brother, Uncle Arthur, he was still quite popular during the 70s, thanks to a little game show called The Hollywood Squares. If any of you remember the original Hollywood Squares, he was one of the highlights of the show.
So as a little Halloween treat to all you Horrorheads who still remember the days when the most evil thing on the planet was supposedly KISS, but in reality was Richard Milhouse Nixon
and his merry band of lying, cheating cronies, The Black Glove is proud to present in its (almost entirety, minus the commercials, of course) The 1976 Paul Lynde Halloween Special, a show which has become legend for its cheesiness.
So laugh and enjoy the cheese. You won't see the likes of this Halloween special ever again.