Saturday, October 18, 2014

Top 10 Things Needed to Survive a Horror Movie

A new Top 10 already? Well, while I normally like to space this out a bit more, but I found myself getting asked a very pertinent question that simply must be covered with a list. You see, yesterday the folks over at Man Crates asked me what I would want in a crate in order to survive a horror film. Now, if it's somehow escaped your notice throughout the little Horrorfest thing I have going on, let me refresh you on a very important fact about myself: I love horror movies. I was raised on them and have a fairly good handle on what it would take to survive one, so I find myself quite giddy to talk about this topic.

I'd say the first rule should be avoiding abandoned cabins. Especially this particular one.
There are definite rules to surviving, something even the makers of the Scream films were aware of, even if the characters didn't always obey those rules. So, as I name off these important items one would need to survive such a situation, I will also go over why and cite examples of when said items would've really came in handy. Moving right along, let's wander into those dark woods and find our way out to the other side relatively intact.


#10, Survival Backpack

Pretend this is you and that you still have arms.
This right here is the biggest of no-brainers. If you're gearing up to survive a horrific situation, you need something to carry your gear. And what better way to stow it than in a tactical backpack that straps securely to your body. This is the sort of thing countless people in horror films could've used, but I think the most famous example would be good ol' Ash Williams. Just think, he could've carried the Necronomicon, the axe, the boomstick, a gas can, and plenty of extra shells. As cool as Ash is, some extra storage capacity really would've helped him out a bit more. Just make sure not to overload it, you don't want it to weigh you down while you're running for your life.

#9, Air Horn

Trust me, this makes more sense than you realize.
You know how there always comes a point when the killer or monster is right on top of the potential victim? Well, guess what? Those bastards have ears. That's right, generally every scenario where something is going out of its way to murder you can be helped by giving them a literal dose of temporary (or even permanent) deafness. They will likely wince in pain, allowing you to put distance between them and yourself, but that's not all. This also allows you the chance to get the drop on your enemy, as they will be deaf for a varying amount of time. Sure, this might not work on ghosts, but if Terri had a bag of these in The Howling to hurt those sensitive werewolf ears, she might have made it out alive. I recommend bringing more than one of these.

#8, Rope
If you don't see how useful this is, you're likely going to die while the opening credits are still rolling.
If there's one thing the incredibly popular Hunger Games series should've taught you, it's the importance of a good rope. It has many uses, whether it be setting a trap, tying up an unconscious enemy, or simply using the good sense to climb high up in a tree and tie yourself to the trunk. I don't know if you've ever noticed, but killers rarely look in trees, which makes it that much sadder that most people in horror films never think to hide in them. Hell, Michael Myers, while extremely threatening, seems to have issues climbing most things so heading up a tree probably would've saved most of his victims. Moving away from Haddonfield probably wouldn't have hurt either.

#7, Holy Water
Did you know you can buy this stuff? I thought you just walked into a church a filled up a bottle.
Yes, yes, I know, not everyone believes in the very prevalent Christian/Catholic belief system. But, in a horror movie, this stuff right here can be the difference between living and dying. Sure, you might not believe in deities or demons, but what if a vampire comes calling? Maybe a demonic entity likes your house? Trust me, this stuff is like a condom. You might not need it, but it's good to have around just in case. I know the Frog Brothers have my back on this one.

#6, UV Flashlight
Unless you've evolved the ability to see in night vision, you might fancy having this.
This one right here is another obvious choice, because you need to see in the dark. Play any horror game and you know how important a flashlight is to your survival. How many times have you watched someone get hacked up by Jason Voorhees simply because they didn't see him in the dark? And, since this is an ultraviolet model, it also acts as a weapon against those pesky neck-gnawing vampires. It even serves third purpose, allowing you to see blood splatter or slime trails in the dark, suggesting areas you may want to avoid being in. Invest in one today.

#5, Silver Combat Knife
If John Rambo trusts it, you'd probably ought to trust it too.
Yes, now we're on to the really good stuff. This right here is a prime example of something that should be in any survival kit, regardless of circumstance. It's a big ass combat knife with a compass built into it. Should I really have to explain the importance of a big knife and a compass? Let's scour our memories to the recently discussed Without Warning, where two teenagers get lost in the woods while running from an alien hunter and a crazed Martin Landau. A compass would've helped them get as far from that alien as possible, making sure they didn't end up lost. And the knife definitely would've made Landau a much shorter threat. Be like Rambo, come prepared for war.

#4, Neck Brace
Please don't attempt anything involving putting your head between your legs as a means to getting this.
It might seem a bit silly...alright, really silly...but bear with me here. Back in the old days when guys ran around on quests or hunted vampires and the like, they wore bits of armour. These often would vary in size, shape, and weight. But, there was one constant among these people: always guard your neck. Today, we can't exactly run down to the blacksmith and get a piece of armour hammered out, but we can get this. It can stop a neck chopping implement or any sort of bitey monster from getting at your neck temporarily. This gives you a fighting chance in a bad situation, which is what this is all about. So, quit giggling and get with the program. A neck brace can save your life the next time an apple loving vampire moves in next door.

#3, Machete
If it's good enough for your average hockey mask wearing undead slasher, then it's good enough for you.
Take a note from Jason Voorhees, because a nice solid machete is probably the best friend you can have in any horror film. It's long enough to give you a bit of distance from your enemy, light enough to be wielded by most anyone, sturdy enough to cut through bone if you hit it hard enough, and it's just a really sensible thing to have when something or someone is out to kill you. Zombies, vampires, slashers, serial killlers, werewolves, it's good for them all (although you might want to invest in a coat of silver for that last one). Outside of a horror movie, it's even great as a nice default home security device. Jam one into a table facing your door (preferably with dried blood-like substance on it) and I guarantee the burglars will turn right around.

#2, Running Shoes
Neon colours are not required, I just happen to dig them.
Come on, you know you're going to be running a lot. You can talk a big game about how you might walk up to Leatherface and slug him in the face only to ram his chainsaw up his anal cavity, but we all know you're running like a scared mouse from a hungry owl. Good running shoes will likely be the deciding factor between you making it home to a warm bed or getting to rest in a shallow grave. So, work on your cardio, folks, because you don't want to get winded in those deep dark woods.

#1, First Aid Kit
For all those cuts, scrapes, stab wounds, werewolf bites, and bleeding gut wounds.
The most important item to surviving a horror film is something that people rarely seem to have in horror films: medical supplies. Bandages, stints, pain killers, gauze, these are all extremely important. Things that are out to kill you can easily follow bloody trails, so it's best to make sure not to leave one. Keep yourself safe by practicing common sense and tending to your wounds. After all, bleeding out can kill you just as easily as a hatchet to the head courtesy of Victor Crowley. We're not all as hard to kill as Ash, you know.

I personally believe his power lies in his chin.

That's my list, kiddies. Like it or not, these are the things I racked my brain and decided were the best choices overall to bring with you into a horror film. Sure, maybe a belt of grenades might make sense, or perhaps a rocket launcher, but I doubt that any of us will be able to get our hands on those under normal circumstances. So, until Bruce Campbell, Reggie Banister, and Tom Atkins beat on my door and tell me to come help them take down the residents of Castlevania, I'll be here pretending I won't die horribly. Later days, bleeders.

Thrill me.

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