The term “urban legend,” as used by folklorists, has appeared in print since at least 1968, has inflicted fear in many people for many years. Case-in-point; The Killer in the backseat...
The legend involves a woman driving and being followed by a strange car or truck. The mysterious pursuer flashes his high beams, tailgates her, and sometimes even rams her vehicle. When she finally makes it home, she realizes that the driver was trying to warn her that there was a man (a murderer, rapist, or escaped mental patient) hiding in her back seat. Each time the man sat up to attack her, the driver behind had used his high beams to scare the killer.
In some versions the woman stops for gas, and the attendant asks her to come inside to sort out a problem with her credit card. Inside the station, he asks if she knows there's a man in her back seat. In another she hits something, stops, and then the man gets in the back.
The story is often told with a moral. The attendant is often a lumberjack, a trucker, or a scary-looking man; someone the driver mistrusts without reason. She assumes it is the attendant who wants to do her harm, when in reality it is he who saves her life.
An Urban Legend that scared the crap out of me when I was younger. Its also the reason, no matter the time, weather or who I'm with.. before I get in any vehicle I check the back seat. (Laughs) No Shit!
Then you have the one about drinking soda and pop-rocks. Okay just to note this I have done it... I am alive and well they will not make your stomach explode. HOWEVER, they will make you have to swallow fast. -That sounded so wrong-
There is the one about the man calling the babysitter from inside the house. This one here again has to come from some event
A teenage girl is babysitting one evening. The children have been put to bed and the babysitter is in the living room watching TV. The phone rings, and she hears either silence, a man laughing, or heavy breathing. A man asks her to “check the children”. When she asks who he is, he hangs up. Rather than checking on the children, the teenager decides to ignore the call. The stranger calls back several times, each time angrier.
Eventually the girl calls the police, who ask her to wait for the man to call again, and they will trace the call. When he calls again, she manages to keep him talking, for a few minutes, and when the police call back, they tell her that the call is coming from a second line, inside the house, and to get out immediately, as they have already sent some officers over.
As she runs to the door, she sees a man, with a bloody axe, running down the stairs, and she just manages to avoid his blow. She runs outside, into the waiting arms of police, who quickly kill the man.
But even this one has a few variations. Then you have ones like: The Vanishing, Hitchhiker (which there are a few adaptations), The Bunny Man, The Hook, Aren't you glad you didn't turn on the light? And my favorite... Bloody Mary... I'm gonna put it out there.. I've done it and again, I'm still here. It was scary as shit to do, don't get me wrong but I did it anyway. (May never do it again.. cause it was freaky.)
Now the list of Urban Legends go on for miles. Some of the most known are the ones that no matter what you will be reminded everyday of. They are a never ending “horror” in some peoples eyes.
Then you have what I call my true desires... Horror movies. Just to solidify my nuttiness I watch and read as much horror as I can. If its scary, freaky, bloody, and just awesome. There are so many good ones but there are many GREAT ones. The ones that when you watch them you get the chills. The ones that make your heart race and have you yelling at the TV. If it doesn't do that to you it doesn't mean its not a good one just means everyone takes them different. Take me... It truly takes a lot for a movie to “scare” me or to even give me the creeps.
The very first “Horror” movie I ever saw was The Exorcist, the one and only. The original. I did fantastic until Linda Blair's characters head started spinning. I screamed and cried and had nightmares for weeks. (As I've said before.. love it but Jesus it’s beyond freaky.)
A few years ago I asked my mom, who is a chicken when it comes to horror why she watched that movie, and why in the hell did she let a five year old watch it. Her response... “I like it and as for you. You're a stubborn ass and would've snuck into see it anyway so I let you. You also learned a lesson. Next time I told you, you couldn't watch a movie you didn't argue with me.” Bwahaha. Love my crazy mama.
My mama knows me so well. (Laughs) But she is right. I refuse ever since that movie to let one scare or freak me out. (Though I lose that battle at times.) Its built into our brains that if it says horror it has to scare the life out of us. That's not the case. Its the purpose and what the movie makers want but you have the control on the scared part. Horror is a wide genre.
The number of movies in the genre of Horror are all their own kind of horror. You have movies like The Omen, The Blob, Poltergeist, Rosemary's Baby, Invasion of the body snatchers, Child's Play, Dolls, Puppet Master, The curse of Frankenstein... that are great movies but not what I consider scary. But they keep your attention and they keep you entertained. Now I do know some people even a couple of the Temptresses that have issues with a few of these, as in the scare factor but each individual acts different to different things.
Then you get into the more advanced horror movies... Like A Nightmare on Elm Street, House on Haunted Hill, The Ring, The Candyman, The Mothman prophecy, The Prophecy, Stay Alive, The Ring, Jeepers Creepers, Mirrors. Any movie dealing with Ghosts, Demons and the supernatural.
Then you have the ones that make you want to turn the lights back on. An American Haunting, Friday the 13th, Saw, Hostel, The Exorcism of Emily Rose, Vacancy, Wrong Turn, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Wolf Creek, and The Hills have Eyes.
I name the last group the scare the shit out of you group because a couple of them are based off of actual events. Or part of the characteristics of the story line are. Take the Texas Chainsaw Massacre leather face character for example. As most people know this character is based off the serial Killer Ed Gein. He murdered woman and skinned them and wore their skin. (shudders) Then you have Wolf Creek, an Australian based movie that is based on a true story. An American Haunting is based off of actual events as is the Exorcism of Emily Rose.
And I'm no fool the movies Hostel, Wrong Turn, the Hills have Eyes (based off of true life events) and Saw... let me just say this... I know I am not the only person to have these thoughts either... these ideas came from somewhere. All I can say is I believe anything can happen at anytime so I am a cautious biotch. (Just Saying)
As for Horror Book Series there is only one for me... Stephen King. I own and have read every book he has under his name and under his Sir name. He is my idol and that so explains a few things... (laughs)
So my final thoughts... there is one Urban Legend/Movie/Book or story out there that no matter what will forever scare the shit out of everyone of us. It could be a simple movie like Candyman or a complex one like the Exorcist. So before you judge the book by the cover keep in mind you never really know what is behind the cover and if you open that book be careful it doesn't bite.
Keep checking under your bed...