Monday, October 20, 2014

Why I like Elvira

Why I like Elvira

1) At this point in my life, I'm over watching bad movies. I spent a lot of my college years on various couches watching badly acted, badly made, incompetently produced dreck looking for laughs. While "bad" is highly subjective (I'd still argue that a lot of the Friday the 13th movies are good, if you judge them on their own merits), "bad" often means "boring." It's frustrating to watch a movie sabotaged by incompetence or laziness. The only way a bad movie can be salvaged is by having genuinely funny comedians provide running commentaries to it. 

2) Most people think of MST3K/Rifftrax when they think of goofing on bad films. I never found the MST3K guys funny. They have a sorta Midwestern mild politeness that blunts most of their humor and makes their comedy about as edgy as a church-camp comedy skit. When you're working with oddball sci-fi/horror stuff, you gotta work a little blue. Your material has to be saucy. You have to be playful and edgy. You gotta be Elvira.   

3) I'm a child of the 80s and Elvira means Halloween to me. She was the Santa of the season. You know Halloween had come around when her beer ads popped up on TV and her cut-outs appeared in grocery stores. She's the harbinger of the Halloween season. And she's fun.

4) Elvira is like a more vivacious version of the Addams Family and the Munsters rolled into one. As I pointed out in my Munsters article, Elvira has a hard time believing the world isn't as weird as she is. Like the Addams Family, she's so joyfully, unselfconsciously ghoulish.     

5) Terry Pratchett once wrote that his earthy old witch Nanny Ogg was the kind of saucy old woman that England still produces: full of interesting life experiences, fond of beer and a raunchy joke, loud, brassy, and fun. Elvira fits that description, with an added dollop of vampiric glee.

6) Now, hrm, here's where I am going to get in trouble. Look, I'm a feminist. I recognize male privilege, I like Anita Sarkeesian, I do my best to live decently and ignore the toxic messages in our culture, so I try not to be one of those guys that constantly harps on people's appearance but OH MY LORD Elvira is stunning. She's got a burlesque vibe, vamps for the camera. she's sexy and campy at the same time. I'm pretty sure she was one of my first crushes.

Conclusion: I'm watching the 13 Nights of Elvira on Hulu as I watch this and I love it! She's lost none of the charm over the years, and the internet's lack of parental standards allow her to make the best off-color jokes. She's funny, charming, and one of the best things about Halloween.

No comments: