When I was younger, maybe six or seven years old, I would check out the Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark series from the school library. A mix of folklore, urban legends, and other stories, the series was known primarily for the utterly disturbing illustrations that accompanied the stories. One night, as my dad was tucking me into bed, I panicked, recalling some of those horrifying pictures. Given that I was seven and utterly convinced monsters lived in my closet, the prospect of giant, hydrocephalic skull monster chasing after me only exacerbated this fear. When I told my dad why I was so afraid, he got pissed and began to question why these books were made available in an elementary school library.
Aunt John and Uncle Lancifer can empathize. They run the popular horror blog Kindertrauma, a niche site devoted to " the movies, books, and toys that scared you when you were a kid," as well as "kids in scary movies, both as heroes and villains." Sporting an atypical pink design with chalk-scrawled laudatory praise supporting a banner proclaiming "Your Happy Childhood Ends Here," Kindertrauma is one of the most unique horror blogs currently in operation. Aside from being incredibly niche (though still devoting time to reviews, both retro and contemporary), it remains one of the only interactive horror blogs around today. By this I don't mean forums or allowing users to submit reviews, but instead several features that allow users to write in and discuss their childhood fears.
One of these is "Name That Trauma," a regular feature that has users seeking the assistance of John and Lancifer in remembering those tip-of-the-tongue movies that scared you as a kid. It is here we get to see the depths of their knowledge (or at the very least their incredible search skills) as they remind their readers of obscure childhood frights they just can't quite recall. Speaking of which, does anyone remember a show or movie from the early to mid-eighties featuring a young girl and a wizard who turned people to stone? Or maybe it was wood.
But what scared John and Lancifer the most when they were kids?
Aunt John: "My fondest trauma, if you will, came from, of all places, LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE. I have manned up to this one before; there was something so frightening about the Halloween episode "Monster of Walnut Grove" that it stuck with me for 30 some residual years; it became my first post on KINDERTRAUMA."
Uncle Lancifer: "My ultimate kindertrauma was an ABC movie of the week called Satan's Triangle. That one made it impossible for me to sleep for what seemed like years. I was also kind of terrified of the Paul McCartney and Wings song "Let 'Em In" too. I wasn't sure who was "knocking on the door" and "ringing the bell" but for some reason, I was convinced that it wasn't somebody I wanted to let in. Frankly, that song still gives me the creeps."
I never in a million years thought that Little House on the Prairie or Paul McCartney could be terrifying in any capacity, but I was freaked out by imaginary monsters in my closet, so I really have no room to judge. Check out Kindertrauma for a terrifying trip down memory lane.