Search Results for: hair don'ts

Hair Don’ts II: The Revenge of Aqua Net

Somehow, since last time it’s taken ages to accrue more terrible hairstyles, but here they are:

bad hair final exam 1981

“The Walking Bouffant,” modelled by Final Exam (1981) Matthew Perry-esque frat dude.

I worry about how much hairspray went into creating this bonfire mound of hair, worsened by the centre parting and general volume. It lends well to the character’s general smarminess and eventual knife through the torso.

grotesque 1987 bad hair

“Wind Shear,” by Gang Member from Grotesque (1987)

Looks like actress Bunky Jones – also modelling a huge do in Hide and Go Shriek that same year – stuck her head out the window on the freeway and was hit in the face by a blueberry pie.

sleepaway camp judy bad hair

“The Cricked-Neck Counterbalancer,” sported by Judy in Sleepaway Camp (1983)

The entire 80s Sleepaway Camp franchise is full of fashion faux pas’ and bad hair, and it’s possibly Judy started it all by pulling her entire mane of thick, dry hair into a side-ponytail, which must have had consequences for her skeletal musculo something something.

child's play 3 bad hair

“What ever happened to Tiffany?” on random girl from Child’s Play 3 (1991)

Shaggy perm, scrunchie on top, was this look still around in ’91? I guess so. Perhaps Chucky was too weirded out by it, because this chick exits the film intact.

bad hair girls nite out 1982

“2-for-1 on Bad Hair,” with Pryor from Girls Nite Out (1982)

A classic 80s mullet and 90s curtains together at last, somehow before either became fashionable, on Hal Holbrook’s son as the is-he-or-isn’t-he killer, who understandably would’ve donned that bear costume after glancing in the mirror at this atrocity.

bad hair trampa infernal

“Perm-A-Mullet,” by lead-guy in Trampa Infernal (1989)

This guy is the hero, aided probably by extra protection afforded to the skull by the thickness of his curly mullet. I need to go to Mexico and see if they still have this do.

bad hair grotesque 1987

“The Morning After,” by Shelly in Grotesque (1987)

Grotesque – surely named for the hair-don’ts that litter it – strikes again, with another of the punkz, who looks like she lapsed into a two-week coma under a hairdryer.

christine elise child's play 2 1990

“Push it all aside,” with Kyle from Child’s Play 2 (1990)

Probably the least offensive ‘do on the list, but this is a nice compensation for Judy’s heavy list to one side, with Kyle pushing it all to the other, but with less length to slowly pull her neck over.

bad hair bloodstained shadow

“Insane Asylum Special,” for deranged son of nurse in The Bloodstained Shadow (1978)

It may be hard to see clearly, but this poor chap has a standard buzz-cut on top and then a sort of mullet at the sides. The character was kept in a room on a remote island off Italy, so maybe that’s how they rolled there in the late 70s.

linda blair bad hair grotesque 1988

“The Career Flatliner,” from Dame Linda Blair in Grotesque (1987)

Maybe she was possessed by a demon again, as that’s surely the only explanation for this hairspray-OD’d combo of several terrible mid-80s styles, which I fear still exist at roadhouses in the square States.

The title and tagline are referring to the hair

grotesque 1988


2 Stars  1988/18/89m

“There is a fate worse than death.”

Director/Writer: Joe Tornatore / Writer: Mikel Angel / Cast: Linda Blair, Tab Hunter, Donna Wilkes, Guy Stockwell, Luana Patten, Brad Wilson, Michelle Bensoussan, Nels Van Patten, Sharon Hughes, Charles Dierkop, Billy Frank, Robert Z’Dar, Bunky Jones [as Bunki Z], Robert Apisa.

Body Count: 11

Laughter Lines: “My ass doesn’t get cold” / “I don’t doubt it, that’s because you think with your ass and not your brain.”

For a few years, when people said ‘I cannot even’ to express their speechlessness over trivial things, I was confused. ‘Can’t even what?’ I thought. But then came Grotesque into my life, sent by my good friend Ross, who was having a DVD clear out (I tried to palm off 12 Deaths of Christmas on him but he’d already read what I had to say about it and dodged a bullet).

Seriously, what the fuck happened here? This entire project appears to be some sort of exercise in LSD experimentation while writing a film script. Read on, but beware necessary spoilers so that I can stress the bizarre experience of watching it.

grotesque 1988

Long boring credits take us into a film-within-a-film intro, where some old lady is brushing her hair while some dude in a cloak approaches. Then suddenly she’s a young chick. Then old again. Ugh. Turns out it’s a screening of a new film, where the FX work has been done by wonderous artist Orville Kruger, who blabs some exposition that he’s having a little family reunion at the cabin in the mountains this weekend…

Next we meet his daughter Lisa and her friend Kathy as they grab dinner before driving up there. Kathy (Donna Wilkes, most famous for her non-stop shrieking in Jaws 2) is sad over man trouble, while Lisa (Blair) is rocking the first of many hair-don’ts Grotesque will spring on us:

linda blair bad hair grotesque 1988

The girls are warned by the local shopkeep that some ‘freaks’ happened by earlier, and we meet them in a scene: Eight punk-rock youths looking like they teleported from 1977, led by the very unstable Scratch, who looks a cross between Billy Idol and Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer and is seemingly modelled on Zed from the Police Academy movies. Their VW bus has run into trouble and they flag down Lisa and Kathy on the road, basically threaten them, and reveal to the audience they’re planning to invade the cabin, that they killed ‘the entire family’ last time, and Scratch yells a lot.

Orville plays some cruddy pranks on Kathy; Lisa asks her mom how Patrick is. Who is Patrick? Hmm… best wait and see. Night falls soon after the ‘punkers’ break in and haul everyone inside to the den, where they assault and kill Orville, shrieking about where the money/jewellery/dope is stashed. The posturing is dementedly bad, with acting so terrible I dread to think what the other takes looked like if they chose this.

grotesque 1988

Anyway, the ‘punkers’ kill Mom and Kathy, while Lisa dives out of a window and runs off up the mountain in her PJ’s, chased by one of the gang. The others split up to look for things and find a secret room behind a bookcase where Patrick resides. Patrick is your off-the-shelf movie mongoloid: Hunched back, moans to communicate, and hideously deformed features. He’s also super strong of course, and wastes no time offing a few of the intruders and chasing the others into the night.

Morning comes and the shopkeeper from earlier drops by to go fishing with Orville and finds several bodies. Patrick kills off all but the two lead ‘punkers’, and Lisa has been strangled into a coma. Now, up rocks Tab Hunter as Uncle Rod, who is a surgeon. He, shopkeeper dude, and some cops head up the mountain and shoot Patrick dead before he can kill Scratch and Shelly, who are arrested, but swear they just stopped by for help with their van and Patrick killed everybody.

grotesque 1988 patrick

There was still about 30 minutes left at this point, so I was clueless as to what the fuck was going to happen: Patrick has gone from gross-face to no-face, Lisa is in a coma, and there are two ‘punkers’ left. The most nasty two. A very long good-cop/bad-cop sequence unrolls, all the time I was watching the clock and it was still telling me there’s 30 minutes left. HOW, universe?

Lisa dies in surgery; Scratch and Shelly are released; Tab Hunter comes back and manages to kidnap them at gunpoint and take them back to the cabin where he straps them to gurneys, reveals he is Patrick’s father and pulls of a latex mask made for him by his late bro. and then operates on their faces, locking them in Patrick’s secret room. This, apparently, is the fate worse than death the tagline alludes to.

grotesque 1988

Wait, there’s still several minutes left??? So, the film melts – it’s all been a screening! And fucking Frankenstein and the Wolfman are in the projection room, bickering about it. They go into the theater and ‘scare’ everyone (they stand there slowly swaying back and forth with their arms out) and we see several of the actors – Blair, Wilkes, Stockwell – run away screaming. Credits.

Well, what the fucking fuck, Grotesque? What are you? How did you happen? Why are there several big names in you? I cannot answer. Perhaps Blair, who served as associate producer, had the dirt of some of them? Who the fuck knows. I’m tripped out though.

Grotesque is crap, but at least funny in that it’s really a series of ‘eh!?’ moments sewn together, maybe it was supposed to be an anthology and suffered too many script changes? I’d recommend it just for the LOLs: The hair, Blair’s natural charm, her amazing sarcastic response to the child who calls to her outside the store, the hair, the diabolical overacting of most of the ‘punkers’, the makeup the girl members of the gang sport, the hair, good-cop/bad-cop 101, fucking bizarre dialogue exchanges, and the hair.

grotesque 1988

Blurbs-of-interest: Linda was, of course, the lead in Hell Night (and thus also Hellego Night) – co-star Nels Van Patten is the brother of her co-star from Hell Night, Vincent Van Patten; Tab Hunter played Blue Grange in Pandemonium; Donna Wilkes was earlier in Schizoid and Blood Song; Bunky Jones was in Hide and Go Shriek; Robert Z’Dar had the title role in the Maniac Cop movies.

Deadheads: The hairstyles from hell

The 80s is often referred to as the decade that fashion forgot: shoulder pads, power dressing, mullets, and volume. Volume, volume, volume.

Thus, a celebration of some of the most disastrous hair-don’ts to grace the slasher screen over time…

“The UFO Landing”, sported by Tiger in The Burning (1981).

Bless her, a few frames after this still, she tokes on a cigarette, the little rebel. Despite this sub-dreadfdul hairstyle, Tiger doesn’t feel the shears that the film’s killer depletes the ranks of her fellow summer campers and survives to consider new looks.

“The Shoestring Bowl Cut”, modelled by Duncan in Slumber Party Massacre III (1990)

Looking like a cross between every second kindergarten child and H from Steps, it’s no surprise that Duncan’s character is written as a sort of immature man-child whose gags ultimately rile the killer into granting all wishes and whacking him out of the frame. But let’s be honest, most of us had this hairstyle at some point in our formative years.

“The Sideways Shove,” as seen here on Nancy in Unhinged (1982)

A reminder of early 80s styling as seen in the likes of Fame, Nancy obviously only has one good ear and must shove the tremendous weight of her hair over to the other side so she can hear the demented misandric prattling of Edith Penrose.

“The Haven’t-Slept-in-Weeks”, by Nancy from A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

From one Nancy to another, THE Nancy herself, Ms Thompson, whose lack of sleep for days on end manifests itself in massive, dried out hair that even Freddy Krueger’s razor-glove couldn’t penetrate. Unknowingly, Nancy has grown her own defence against the killer’s weapon.

“Bubble Up”, with Jess in Hello Mary Lou: Prom Night II (1987)

Based on evidence from slasher movies, 1987 appears to have suffered the worst in terms of horrible fashion choices. As well as horrible script, editing, and production quality choices. Suicidal high schooler Jess must spend an inordinate amount of time with a hairdryer every morning to pump in that volume. At least in her death, her parents would’ve saved some money on the leccy bill.

sc-hair-from-hell-2“Mullets, side-plaits, and everyones aunt”, from Sleepaway Camp II (1988)

A sort-of Greatest Hits of bad hair, Sleepaway Camp II features an eye-melting array of bad-barnets, all of which transsexual puritan Angela revels in stabbing, slashing, garroting, and throwing acid in the face of. Relatively normal hair is what saves cute final girl Molly in the end. Even though she might’ve actually died, it wasn’t any fault of her do.

“The Wilson Phillips girl-bowl”, modelled by Angela in Children of the Corn II (1992)

Ooh, a 90s hair-crime! Under-represented character Angela (genre regular Rosalind Allen) has a thankless role as love-interest and woman-in-danger for the nominal hero, but I was waiting for her to break into a chorus of Hold On. Someday somebody’s gonna turn around and ruin your hair.

“Soul Glo”, by Demon in Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning (1985)

When funny kid Reggie (Shavar Ross from Diff’rent Strokes) asks if he can go see his brother halfway through Friday 5, nothing will prepare a fresh viewer for the style crimes that open the back doors of a van. It’s like a Michael Jackson home-perm kit that went tragically wrong, meshed with jewellry, leather and spandex. And Demon’s Janet-lite girlfriend is also a sight!

“The Bangles Reject”, from Maria in Slumber Party Massacre III (1990)

As if Duncan and his bowl-cut wasn’t enough, here’s Maria with her high-piled all-girl rock band look: long, silky hair that somehow almost reaches as high above her head as it falls below her chin. It’s probably the least offensive of the do’s on show here, but, Christ is it dated! Still, Maria was one of my favourite characters.

* * *

Nevertheless, none of these hair styles or films they come from can hold a candle to the biggest crimes-against-hair horror film of them all – from 1987, no less! – The Lost Boys:



It’s not just review, review, review ’round here, y’know… Articles & “Insights” Are Slasher Films Misogynistic? – well, are they? Stock Background Characters 101 – appreciating those bit-parters who usually just die Twists of Fury – examining the most unbelievable revelations Repreciation – ranking the remakes Bad Brits – the evil British of the horror realm When pranks go wrong

Read more

Higher education, lower IQ


1.5 Stars  1984/18/78m

“Where the school colors are blood red.”

A.k.a. Campus Killings

Director: Richard W. Haines / Writers: Michael Cunningham, Richard W. Haines, John Michaels & Miljan Peter Ilich / Cast: Francine Forbes, Ric Randig, Dick Biel, Cathy Lacommare, Laura Gold, Joanna Mihalakis, Denise Texera, Don Eaton

Body Count: 8

Laughter Lines: “The killer is obviously a psychopath and cannot be reasoned with.”

With a title like that… Well, what? It’s clearly going to be crap if it has to try so hard, right? Witness the trailer that compares it to The Texas Chain Saw Massacre! A prime example of how much the slasher genre was cheapened after the 1980-82 peak.

Film in general doesn’t come much more difficult to watch than Splatter University, a horrible Troma-associated collegiate stalker in which a maniac with shiny black shoes stabs and slashes a number of female students at St Trinian’s College. Yes, really.

New teacher Julie (Forbes), who replaced the killer’s first victim, attempts to find out who is doing away with her class. Could it be one of a number of creepy of priests who teach there? Or handsome colleague Mark? In truth, it’s unlikely anybody will care as there’s so little to encourage you to give it your full attention. I’d recommend doing a jigsaw, sewing, organising your taxes or something while you watch.

What sucks most about Splatter U is that the script wastes time and energy developing several of the girls’ dickhead boyfriends, none of whom are interested in anything but sex and aren’t the least bit traumatised by the deaths of their girlfriends – and not one of these assholes so much as encounters the killer, let alone gets what they deserve! Instead, girls are done away with at will in punishment for their very being, or so it seems when the killer finally mutters something of a motive.

su3aThings end on a spiteful note with Julie herself becoming the final victim, annoying as she was the only tolerable character and semi-competent actor in the whole production. A suckfest from start to finish, but kinda funny in the way that only the mid-80s could be, with some eye-melting hair-don’ts and regrettable fashion faux pas’.

I can’t really recommend Splatter University without thinking I’ve transgressed some public health order, but it’s strangely well known in the genre, even got namechecked by Randy in Scream 2, so something about it must be right… I just couldn’t possibly tell you what that might be.

1 2