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Old 18 January 2018, 12:00 AM
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Icon18 Scenes in TV and movies that affected you as a child

I saw a similar discussion on Patton Oswalt's Twitter, and thought it would make for an interesting topic here.

Is there a scene from a TV show or a movie that terrified you as a child that stuck with you through the years?

Here's a few of mine.

The M-113 creature from the original Star Trek episode Man Trap. It sent me into a fit when I saw it for the first time. I had to run and hide and couldn't finish watching it!

And, this is an embarrassing admission, but I'm probably the only person in the world who was scared by... the title creature of the terrible movie The Giant Spider Invasion... my family saw it at a local drive-in and at that distance to my young eyes it looked frightfully real. It was days before I could even sleep in my own bed because of the scene where it reached through a window to try to grab a girl. My brother scared the hell out of me for months with this because the landscape of the movie looked like the landscape around my grandparents' house. The weird thing is that even back then I wasn't particularly afraid of spiders. That one just got to me!
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Old 18 January 2018, 12:12 AM
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Me: Wizard of Oz, the flying monkeys. Years later we were watching it, and when the Munchkins came on. Mom asked if those were the things I was afraid of.

My daughter: The "hobo-dog," as she describes it, from the 1978 Invasion of the Body Snatchers. I'm a bit embarrassed to admit that I made her watch it when she was 12. Not appropriate. I can't claim ignorance, that movie scared the crap out of me when I was 16.
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Old 18 January 2018, 12:19 AM
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The end of, "The Incredible Shrinking Man," (well, really the whole movie, but especially the end) when he shrinks into what I perceived as nothing. I couldn't sleep for a week. My mom was pi**ed that my dad let me watch it.
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Old 18 January 2018, 12:30 AM
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I saw Jaws when I was 7. I was afraid to use the bathtub for the rest of the summer.
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Old 18 January 2018, 12:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sylvanz View Post
The end of, "The Incredible Shrinking Man," (well, really the whole movie, but especially the end) when he shrinks into what I perceived as nothing. I couldn't sleep for a week. My mom was pi**ed that my dad let me watch it.
That's a kind of dread that can even affect an adult.

They did something similar with the original Wasp in Ant-Man.
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Old 18 January 2018, 01:43 AM
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When I was around 6 or 7 (early '80s), I saw a TV special on Amelia Earhart that speculated as to her ultimate fate. They especially played up one theory that she may have been eaten by cannibals.

Scared the ever-loving crap out me for several years.

ETA: It may have been a rebroadcast of a 1977 episode of "In Search Of..." - I can't find anything else that fits the timeframe, and the cannibal angle would have been right up ISO's alley.
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Old 18 January 2018, 02:07 AM
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There was an episode of the Outer Limits I saw when I was very young where a pilot breaks the sound barrier and transports himself and his wife somehow out of the dimension of time. They walk around their landscape where they can't really move anything or interact with anything, everything else is frozen in time (a bit like the Langoliers except the people are still around, just not moving). They eventually realize that time *is* moving, but very slowly, as they see that clocks have changed slightly, positions of things have shifted over time, etc...

One vignette involves them noticing a child on a tricycle is about to ride in front of an unoccupied truck that isn't properly parked- they know the truck will roll out and kill the child but can't manipulate the clutch or change the car's path, or redirect/move the child. Somehow the man eventually rigs it up so that his belt will cause the emergency brake (I guess, I don't remember exactly) to engage as the truck moves. In the end of the episode- when they somehow get back to normal and I forget how- it succeeds and the child rides on safely.

In another more disturbing and sad plotline, they encounter a man who is walking around and has clearly been trapped in this weird time warp for a long time- like, possibly decades. He is desperately lonely but for some reason he is also scary to them. He can't even really see anymore. They frighten him away with the flame from a lighter, which is one of the only things he can see I guess. I remember I felt really bad for him and wondered why they couldn't bring him along with them, or why they felt threatened by him.

The episode was irresistibly spooky to me and I remember spending a lot of time thinking about it.





Two others I know I've mentioned before but perhaps not on these forums-
Melting Dave from Alvin and the Chipmunks
I used to watch the Alvin and the Chipmunks cartoon. There was an episode where Dave for some reason got a life-size wax replica of himself. The chipmunks of course being idiots think it's the *real Dave* and that something is terribly wrong with him! At one point it gets left in the sun and starts to melt, and they turn him around to reveal the most horrific face I'd ever seen in my 6 years. I had nightmares about his terrifying melting face for several days.
For some reason I had a small plastic orange toy, probably no bigger than 2 or 3 inches, that was a figure of maybe King Kong or something, some sort of ape-like figure, and I somehow had an association between it and the Melting Dave Head. I became so scared that some time I would look at it and see that face that I hid it in the end table drawer in my parents' room.

A few years ago I finally looked it up. Please gaze upon the object of my childhood nightmares

I really have no idea why it horrified me so much.




The Air Conditioner from the Brave Little Toaster
A lot of people were scared of the killer-clown-nightmare scene in The Brave Little Toaster. I am apparently, for reasons I'm not sure about, completely immune to any type of clown scariness, so that scene was always just meh for me. Like it was creepy, and I remember feeling bad for the characters and hoping they'd be okay, but I didn't feel personally afraid.

There was one part of that movie that honestly prompted me to get up out of my seat and hide crying behind my chair until it was done. It was the scene toward the beginning with the Air Conditioner. Like, I don't remember any other part of any other movie scaring me as much as that part. The characters start to get in an argument and the air conditioner starts getting mad, then starts to get so furious he is screaming about being trapped in the wall forever and ever, yelling so hard he has the electric equivalent of a brain aneurysm I guess and sputters out of control until he explodes. Okay, okay, that's all scary, I didn't like watching that part. But the worst part was after he's exploded, and the other characters peer out from their hiding place and they see the image on the right:



Just sitting there, dead, unanimated, smoke creeping up into the air, and the grill falling with a clatter to the ground while a quiet, dark, solemn music plays.

As soon as their precedent argument started I would just get myself behind my chair and I wouldn't come back out until that clatter and that horribly sad music had finished and the next scene started.
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Old 18 January 2018, 02:34 AM
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I also remember being utterly terrified of this movie:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXeYNmqp8X4

Homer Price and the Doughnut Machine. For some reason, when the machine goes haywire and won't shut off, it just scared the hell out of kindergarten me when we watched it at school.

Oddly enough, the Disney animated Legend of Sleepy Hollow I thought was fun. Loved it! A whacked-out doughtnut machine, though? PURE HIGH OCTANE NIGHTMARE FUEL!
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Old 18 January 2018, 02:47 AM
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I knew the Robert McCloskey story - I never knew they made a filmed version!
That does have a creepy vibe - personally, I lay a lot of blame on the soundtrack. The music they use when Homer is setting up the machine is certainly ominous.
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Old 18 January 2018, 02:53 AM
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Yeah it was one of three or so movies that they showed in rotation when I was in kindergarten and 1st grade or so. This was... errr... 1974-5?

They were the Homer Price movie, the Legend of Sleepy Hollow, and this bit of strangeness, the Winter of the Witch. (SOUNDS scary, but it's not... it's about a witch that makes very delicious blueberry pancakes...)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkDmt8YsZN4
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Old 18 January 2018, 03:02 AM
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Just so many moments in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?...in fact, pretty much every moment in the final confrontation. I think the people involved with that movie wanted to see how many traumatizing scenes they could pack into what’s supposed to be a comedy. A small sampling: Remember when I killed your brother?
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Old 18 January 2018, 03:15 AM
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My dad was pretty lax about what he let me and my brother watch and read, for better or worse. When I was twelve, I watched an Irish movie called The Butcher Boy.

There's one scene in particular where the main character (a young boy) has a nervous breakdown, believes a nuclear bomb has been dropped, and begins hallucinating everyone around him as these pigs frozen in time. It freaked me out so badly that I felt vaguely nauseated. I still remember how awful it felt.

(For what it's worth, in high school I read the novel by Patrick McCabe and liked it a lot, so I guess I got over my trauma.)
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Old 18 January 2018, 04:15 AM
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Don't know how little I was when I saw this, but all I know is this episode of Pigs In Space scared the ever loving crap out of me. I had nightmares for weeks based on it.

PIGS! IN! SPAAAAAACE!
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Old 18 January 2018, 05:19 AM
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The third vignette in the ABC Movie of the Week Trilogy of Terror, the one called "Amelia." Some of you may remember it as the one where the Zuni fetish doll chases Karen Black around her apartment with a carving knife.

The entire episode scared little me, but especially the part where she reached under the couch and it cut her hand. I watched it again a few years ago, and, yeah...not so scary anymore.
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Old 18 January 2018, 05:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mouse View Post
Just so many moments in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?...in fact, pretty much every moment in the final confrontation. I think the people involved with that movie wanted to see how many traumatizing scenes they could pack into what’s supposed to be a comedy. A small sampling: Remember when I killed your brother?
It's amazing how terrifying some villains are in Disney movies. How about the bear in The Fox & The Hound. I think I might have actually hidden behind the couch the first time I saw that scene.
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Old 18 January 2018, 06:20 AM
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A 1977 made for tv movie, Die Vorstadtkrokodile, and especially the scenes when the children sneak around in an old factory building, where burglars are storing their haul...

I had to watch most of the film from behind the living room couch (for savety reasons) and I am still not especially fond of suspense scenes in derelict buildings.
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Old 18 January 2018, 08:19 AM
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The giant robot in Tom Baker's first episode of 'Dr Who" called "Robot".

I remember having a recurring nightmare about a giant robot coming to get me in the cafeteria of the local department store and watching "Dr Who" and thinking "I am not supposed to be watching this" It wasn't until years later when I saw the episode in repeat and thought "Well that explain a lot"

I was telling the guy sitting next to me at the local Dr Who fan club once and he said "Yeah that one gave me nightmares too." The giant robot crossed Metal Mickey* was chasing him. Of all the things in classic Who why the giant robot?

And "The Day After Tomorrow" which is a film about the world after a nuclear war, which unlike the giant robot seemed a possibility in the '80's.

Apart from those two, I am pretty good at separating real life from fiction and was from an early age. I remember in the early days of video my Mum, Dad Brother and I watch two horror films. One about vampires and I can't remember what the other one was about. And I was the only one brave enough to go outside the locked house to the "drink fridge" to get all something despite being the youngest.


*Whom I am not familiar with but maybe some of you are.

Last edited by Dasla; 18 January 2018 at 08:42 AM. Reason: added war
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Old 18 January 2018, 08:30 AM
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I have a very vivid memory of a scene in what I think was a movie (might have been a TV show) in which a guy is reaching carefully into a garbage disposal to fish something out when... well, you can guess what happens. I've never been the same.
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Old 18 January 2018, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TallGeekyGirl View Post
I also remember being utterly terrified of this movie:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXeYNmqp8X4

Homer Price and the Doughnut Machine. For some reason, when the machine goes haywire and won't shut off, it just scared the hell out of kindergarten me when we watched it at school.
I just watched this again for the first time in over 40 years, and... THEY NEVER DID TURN OFF THE MACHINE! AAAAAUUUGGGH! (Runs and hides...)

This little bit of retrospection highlighted something about me. To this day -- and I'll be 49 in April -- when things get too busy or frantic I can easily lose my cool and get flustered. I think I was like that even when I was 5 or whenever it was that I was scared by this movie. The relentlessness of it and the inability to do anything about it.
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Old 18 January 2018, 12:59 PM
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I remember actually screaming in the cinema when I was very young, during The Swiss Family Robinson I think. There was a scene where the heroes were being chased down a beach by a horde of people and want to hide in the undergrowth, and suddenly a tiger appears and pokes its head out of a bush. The tiger made me scream. I can't remember how old I was, but I remember that I was old enough to be slightly embarrassed afterwards. (I assume it was the 1960 Disney version of the film, which doesn't help narrow down the date, since this would have been in the mid-70s).

I also remember quite clearly a religious film that my friend's parents took a few of us to. (Unusually for the UK, they were evangelical Christians). I must have been nine or ten, I think. The film was about a little boy who made a fantastic wooden ark with all the animals, and wanted to give it as a present to a girl that he liked. The film showed how long he'd spent on it and how nice it was. On his way to give it to the girl, he got stopped by the local bully who smashed it up in the mud. This was upsetting (as somebody who got picked on rather) but I assumed that, as in a conventional film, eventually it would turn out OK and the bully would be punished and perhaps he'd manage to rebuild his ship.

However, the point of the film turned out to be the exact opposite. If the bully was punished, they didn't make a big deal of it. The rest of the film - at least, in my memory - was the little boy being blamed and punished and lectured for the sin of pride. It was wrong of him to have been so proud of his wooden boat, and God was punishing him for it.

I wasn't at all religious before that (I don't think I've ever actually believed in God, which seems to me to be the default position unless taught otherwise) but that film certainly didn't have its intended effect on me... it made me realise how utterly cruel and stupid religion can be!
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