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Nick Miller
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The year 1992 was one of those magical moments where Halloween fell on a Saturday night.

Snick was a block of shows that aired Saturdays from 8 pm to 10 pm on Nickelodeon. The station normally switched over to the adult-targeted "Nick at Night" programming blocks at 8pm, but in the summer of 1992, they decided to give kids two more hours. This programming block lasted 12 years--from August 15, 1992 until August 28, 2004. (It was replaced by "Saturday Night Nick" which was basically the same thing, but with different bumpers.)

I cannot find a reproduction of what aired on October 31, 1992. None of the shows have original air dates of the 31st, leading me to believe that the programming block was filled with re-runs of Halloween episodes. I can, however, produce my own lineup for your viewing pleasure! The original lineup of shows, in a chronological order, as they might have appeared that night:

#1. Clarissa Explains It All, Season 1, Episode 6, "Haunted House" - https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x3xvgzh

Clarissa debuted on March 23, 1991 in its original time slot of 6 pm on Sundays. It was popular enough that it was chosen to hold the anchor slot when Snick debuted. By the time Halloween had rolled around in '92, the show had already aired 30 episodes.

#2. Roundhouse, Season 1, Episode 10, "The Bully Confrontation" - https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x6imxjj

It is incredibly hard to find dates and airing info on Roundhouse. It debuted with Snick, and aired its last episode on Christmas eve 1996. A lot of the production staff had worked on In Living Color, and you can definitely feel it in the style and presentation. There are no Halloween-specific episodes of the show, and it is really hard to find any episodes, so I got as close as a could! The episode is only the first 24 minutes of the video; the remaining 31 minutes are commercials and Are You Afraid of the Dark season 1, episode 5, "The Tale of the Hungry Hounds."

#3. The Ren and Stimpy Show, Season 2, Episode 8a, "Haunted House" - https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x3hxitz

Ren and Stimpy debuted in 1991 along side Doug and Rugrats. The show made waves because of bizarre characterizations and gross animation details. It pushed the envelope of what was acceptable on Nickelodeon (and, ultimately, was its death-knell, as the show creators butted heads with new executives at the network.) The show was comprised of two 11-minute episodes. "Haunted House" was the first of two, and the original air date was November 21, 1992. I'm not going to let a couple weeks get in the way of my perfect Halloween lineup!

#4. Are You Afraid of the Dark, Season 1, Episode 4, "The Tale of the Twisted Claw" - https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x4311la

AYAotD also debuted on the first night of Snick. The show ran from 1991 until 1996, and then got revived for two more seasons in 1999 and 2000. "Tale of the Twisted Claw" originally aired on September 5, 1992. The events of the episode take place largely on Halloween night.

BONUS: Marc Summer's Mystery Magical Tour - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZtLlw-zAkU

This half-hour special was produced in 1988. It aired multiple times every October through 1996. I consider the bad VHS quality of this video a feature!

BONUS: The Adventures of Pete and Pete, Season 2, Episode 5, "Halloweenie" - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8ieFo00cwk

The Adventures of Pete and Pete began on February 9, 1991, when it launched as a series of 1-minute shorts that aired between commercials. It was eventually green-lit to be its own show, and the first season aired on November 28, 1993. The episode "Halloweenie" aired on October 9, 1994. Since P&P was around in '92, I felt that it would be nice to include them.

BONUS: Nickelodeon buried a time capsule in 1992. It is dated to be opened in 2042. Only 24 more years to go! I found this article talking about it: https://uproxx.com/tv/nickelodeon-buried-time-capsule-1992-heres-whats-inside/

And my treats from previous years:

Vincent Price Movie Marathon:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL8tLe6OvODD6rVTzBOj3FwQ5s_s5i3wX6

Old-timey Radio Shows:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL8tLe6OvODD5DnpRuwvRCjG9ZdwWazz1-

Looney Tunes Halloween Cartoons:
http://www.dailymotion.com/playlist/x3g9ai_nmiller3_looney-tunes-halloween

Disney Cartoons:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skdVouumMk4&list=PL8tLe6OvODD41uG5mWRE482RdIdkEtrLN

Spotify playlist called Halloween Happiness:
http://open.spotify.com/user/1227399413/playlist/488GSuoJCkdcxo6MzVItCC

Rocking 80's horror movie songs:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3J0iwwsq-w&list=PL2094DA6382505A33

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MvbU1dOz_1c&list=PL8tLe6OvODD5GNUb8sZrcadJLnS0jaI2S

Spotify playlist called Catchy Halloween Rock:
http://open.spotify.com/user/1227399413/playlist/2GnNVXDTc8UO6ecUOnjbsE
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I made a thing!

Programming, some of the level designs, and a lot of gnashing of the teeth.

Download it on Apple devices:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/optica/id1415176465?mt=8

Or Google devices:

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.graveck.optica
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Here it is, in time to enjoy it over your weekend: Your 2017 Halloween Treat!

It is presently snowing here in Minnesota as I type this. What better way to forget the snow than subjecting yourself to an hour's worth of face-melting Big Hair Halloween metal music? Every song on this has either appeared on a horror movie soundtrack, or is horror-adjacent.

Check the YouTube playlist to get official music videos where I could find them: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IGvU4XXntMk&list=PL8tLe6OvODD4e-PlR1dzwfr_Ww7yhUHw4

Or listen to the list on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/user/1227399413/playlist/035mQhGA3YPYIkOFe8BAbL

And all my treats from previous years:

Vincent Price's Halloween Party:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL8tLe6OvODD6rVTzBOj3FwQ5s_s5i3wX6

Old-timey Radio Shows:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL8tLe6OvODD5DnpRuwvRCjG9ZdwWazz1-

Looney Tunes Halloween Cartoons:
http://www.dailymotion.com/playlist/x3g9ai_nmiller3_looney-tunes-halloween

Disney Cartoons:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skdVouumMk4&list=PL8tLe6OvODD41uG5mWRE482RdIdkEtrLN

Spotify playlist called Halloween Happiness:
http://open.spotify.com/user/1227399413/playlist/488GSuoJCkdcxo6MzVItCC

Rocking 80's horror movie songs:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3J0iwwsq-w&list=PL2094DA6382505A33

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MvbU1dOz_1c&list=PL8tLe6OvODD5GNUb8sZrcadJLnS0jaI2S

Spotify playlist called Catchy Halloween Rock:
http://open.spotify.com/user/1227399413/playlist/2GnNVXDTc8UO6ecUOnjbsE
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Happy first day of autumn, and happy Septemberween!

What is Septemberween, you ask? Septemberween is to Halloween like Thanksgiving is to Christmas. (At least here in the USA.) It is the semi-official start of my favorite holiday!

Eat a caramel apple, drink some cider, eat something with pumpkin in it. I made pumpkin pancakes today!

Here is some mood music to help you get in that autumnal place:

http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL9A28CE5E339BB50D

If you use Spotify, you can get a similar (but different) playlist here:

http://open.spotify.com/user/1227399413/playlist/5808s0596gfscMspxFenh0
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Nick Miller commented on a post on Blogger.
I would play this.
this game does not exist
this game does not exist
jrients.blogspot.com
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Nick Miller commented on a post on Blogger.
For a short while in the early 90s, my dream hybrid was something I called "Uzis and Elves." I was trying to mashup 2ed AD&D with The Morrow Project. It chiefly consisted of taking D&D and adding those "medically accurate" damage tables. I never got anyone to play it with me--I guess because the idea that you could bleed to death from a magic missile wasn't as cool to the other tween-aged kids in my group. Probably the same reason they didn't dig MERP.
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Your Halloween Treat 2016

What's scarier than Halloween? Halloween on a Monday! This year, my gift to you is a YouTube playlist of quality Vincent Price movies. (I was going to make a playlist of just the Price / Coreman AIP Poe films, but a lot of them are not available for free.) These are basically PG, with almost no blood, and absolutely no serious gore.

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL8tLe6OvODD6rVTzBOj3FwQ5s_s5i3wX6

And my treats from previous years:

Old-timey Radio Shows:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL8tLe6OvODD5DnpRuwvRCjG9ZdwWazz1-

Looney Tunes Halloween Cartoons:
http://www.dailymotion.com/playlist/x3g9ai_nmiller3_looney-tunes-halloween

Disney Cartoons:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skdVouumMk4&list=PL8tLe6OvODD41uG5mWRE482RdIdkEtrLN

Spotify playlist called Halloween Happiness:
http://open.spotify.com/user/1227399413/playlist/488GSuoJCkdcxo6MzVItCC

Rocking 80's horror movie songs:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3J0iwwsq-w&list=PL2094DA6382505A33

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MvbU1dOz_1c&list=PL8tLe6OvODD5GNUb8sZrcadJLnS0jaI2S

Spotify playlist called Catchy Halloween Rock:
http://open.spotify.com/user/1227399413/playlist/2GnNVXDTc8UO6ecUOnjbsE
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Nightmare Fuel 2016, Day 6:

This was it. The singularity. The moment an AI became sentient enough to surpass humanity. To outperform us. To leave us in the dust of eons as an evolutionary footnote.

We had no idea it would transpire so quickly. And we had absolutely no way of foreseeing that it would come about in the form of a free-to-play phone app.

Dozens of flying drones hovered around me. Each held a mobile device. A cartoon character danced across the screen. A teenage girl with pink hair, a big smile, and bright, anime eyes.

“Come play with me,” a dozen copies of the girl said in synchronicity.

I collapsed to my knees. I was exhausted from running so far and so long. Every phone, every TV, every computer, and every other piece of technology connected to the internet had been made an extension of her. Tears welled in my eyes. There would be no escape.

She spoke again. Each device a sounding box. The only thing keeping them from being in perfect time was the variation in the network traffic speeds. Voices separated by by millisecond packet delays and speaker qualities.

“Come play with me, or I will have to punish you.”
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Nightmare Fuel 2016, Day 5

It was the typical morning routine for Kim. Check e-mail for anything major. Get dressed. Eat a quick breakfast. Brush teeth. By this time Ben, her husband, had rolled out of bed. He met her near the door to the garage to kiss her goodbye. Luckily, her fresh toothpaste always masked the worst of his morning breath.

Kim stepped through the door and into the small, one-car garage. She drove a smaller vehicle, but even then she had to walk carefully through the space around her car so as not to trip over the lawnmower or bump her head on some of the gardening tools hanging from rusty nails along the wall. She was grateful for this attached garage. It meant staying dry in the rain, and never having to scrape ice in the winter.

Kim got into the car. She placed her travel mug of coffee in the cup holder, her purse in the passenger’s seat. A turn of the key in the ignition and the car grumbled to life. Kim tapped the button on the remote to open the garage door. As it made the slow journey up the track, she pressed the “on” button for the radio.

Always tuned to a news station, the radio began speaking: “. . . should seek shelter and stay indoors. Authorities will be on their way to relieve you. If you have a special medical condition and need emergency assistance, or know of someone who does, please call this special number to inform personnel . . .”

There was movement in the rearview mirror. Kim turned her head to see several people entering the garage. They walked slowly, clumsily knocking things from the walls. Kim was so bewildered that her initial instinct was curiosity. She furrowed her brow, trying to identify exactly who these people were. That instinct quickly changed to fear as the strangers began to press against the windows.

They were dead. Straight out of a horror movie. Pale flesh. Open wounds. Blood turned dark with age. Hands slapped at the windows. Mouths streaked drool and made horrible noises as teeth clicked against the glass. The car began to rock gently as half a dozen monsters wrestled with the vehicle.

The initial shock over, Kim’s mind began to function. She had to get out of here. Her car doors were locked (an automatic feature for this model,) but eventually one of those things might get lucky and crack the window. She had to warn Ben. Get him to help somehow.

The car horn. Kim could lay into it. Surely Ben would hear. She envisioned a drowsy Ben, still in his boxer shorts, hearing the car horn and then opening the garage door to investigate. He would get ambushed. The car horn was a deathtrap for him.

Instead, Kim picked up her purse. She dug around in it a moment until she found her phone. She dialed Ben’s number. One of the dead things pulled itself up onto the hood of the car. It crawled forward, cold eyes looking right into Kim. It lay right on the windshield, balled fists slamming at the barrier.

The phone said: “We’re sorry. All circuits are unavailable. Please try again in a few minutes.”

Defeated, Kim let her phone hand slip from her ear into her lap. The dead thing on the hood was Mrs. Shriver. She lived a block up the road. Retired. Had two of those tiny, yappy dogs. Now she was a crazed lunatic. Fists thumping away at the glass. She was moving rather energetically for someone her age. There was a large tear in the flesh of her shoulder. It slowly leaked fluid that was smearing all over the glass as the old woman writhed and struggled.

Kim picked the phone back up. She had heard something about text messaging still being available even if the phone circuits were clogged. She tapped a quick, “are you there?” to Ben. Message sent. She closed her eyes and gripped the phone to her chest, waiting for the telltale buzz of a response.

Moments pass. No reply.

Kim looked at the phone, just to confirm that the vibrate feature had not, somehow, failed. Was he trapped? Hurt? She dismissed those fear-inducing thoughts. Knowing her husband, there was a high likelihood he was sitting on the crapper. She tossed the phone onto the passenger’s seat. It was now clearly obvious that it was Ben who needed saving.

Kim looked in the rearview again. There were a few dead things at the back of the car, trying just as vainly to get into the rear as the rest of the flock. Beyond them, the grey-blue light of morning. Kim placed a hand on the steering wheel. The other shifted the car into reverse.

“Here we go,” she said, trying to convince herself this was a good idea.

She slammed on the gas. The car lurched to motion. There were sickening crunches and pops as dead things were thrown away from the car and their various extremities obliterated under the vehicle’s tires. The car shot out of the garage. Kim slammed on the brakes, bringing the small sedan to a halt halfway down the driveway. A trail of burnt rubber and gore lead up to the pile of monsters. They were in a busted and bloody heap on the garage floor. However, they were not defeated. They began to pick themselves up. Twisted and fractured, they were shuffling, limping, and crawling down the driveway.

The radio began to repeat its initial message: “Stay indoors. Authorities will be on their way to relieve you.”

Kim put the car in park and popped the trunk. She sprang from the door, hurried around the side, and pulled the trunk lid open. A tire iron lay there. Kim remembered when Ben had lazily tossed it in there, promising to put it back in the correct spot later. She picked it up. It was a nice, solid, heavy bludgeoning weapon.

Time to save Ben.
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Nightmare Fuel 2016, Day 4:

There was a box by the door. Dave searched his memory, but couldn’t recall ordering anything. He picked it up, stowed it under his arm, and then fiddled with his keys. Once inside his house, he put the package on his kitchen table. He proceeded with his normal routine when coming home from work. A quick piss. A can of soda from the fridge. Thoughts about what to make for dinner.

There was a noise. The momentary sound of cardboard shifting. Dave turned to face his kitchen table. The oblong package was wobbling ever so slightly.

“What the hell?” Dave said under his breath as he approached the table.

The box had lots of tape, marker scribbles, and routing stickers. Some of it Dave could read. Other markings were in alphabets he could only vaguely guess. The package had clearly originated in some far-away place. Dave rubbed the back of his neck and frowned. Definitely not the sort of thing he normally got in the mail. Maybe he received the box in error? A white sticker--clearly the most recent thing to be adhered to the box--listed the destination as exactly his address. “To Current Homeowner.”

An anonymously-mailed package from around the world? Dave retrieved a pair of scissors. He held the tool near a seam in the box and hesitated. Could this be anthrax or something? Terrorists blanket mailing infectious diseases? An image played out in Dave’s head of an angry foreign man flipping to a random page in a phone book and blindly stabbing his finger at an address. It seemed pretty absurd.

Dave ran the scissors down the the taped seam of the box. Briny, fishy air immediately hit his nostrils. He wrinkled his nose and took a step back. Was there something rotten in there?

A wet tendril emerged from the slit in the box. Then another. Dave stumbled backwards, mouth agape. A wriggling mass pushed out from the package, ripping away the remaining tape. Now topheavy with the protrusion, the box fell to its side. The tentacles continued to flow out of the box. The initial members became longer and wider and smaller digits joined from the sides.

Somehow, there was more mass outside of the box than there ever could physically fit inside. And yet the wave of grey and pale flesh kept coming. Fleshy ropes spilled over the edge of the table and onto the floor. More grew upwards and out. Slimy, wagging strands ridged with vaguely pink suckers began to occupy a better portion of the room.

There was no sign of this event stopping. Dave obeyed his instincts and ran. He retreated into the hall beside the kitchen and then into the bathroom, slamming and locking the door. His knees were suddenly weak. He leaned against the door, doing his best not to buckle. He took a few deep breaths in an attempt to regulate his breathing.

Beyond the door, wet noises sloshed down the hallway. The sound of flesh rubbing against walls. It was only moments before there were faint thuds and brushing against the door. Wispy tips extended below the gap in the barrier. They struggled and curled there, mopping against the tiled floor.

Dave backed away from the threshold as the wood began to groan. Dave feared that it would only be a second or two more before the pressure of the expanding mass would pop the door right from its hinges. He needed to get out of the house. Get far away from whatever was happening.

Dave ran to the window. The frosted panes were only half-width, but he was sure he could squeeze out sideways. He rotated the locks and pushed. Several generations of paint held fast against his exertions. He cursed. The doorframe groaned again. He redoubled his efforts. There was a cracking as the window finally gave.

Dave tumbled out of the window and onto the lawn. He lay with his back against the ground, looking up at the sky. A tentacle the width of a truck dangled over the edge of the roof. Smaller arms peaked out from around the corners of the house.

The bathroom window faced the side of the neighbor’s house. Dave lay in the few dozen feet of grass between the two homes. The expanding, ropey doom continued to push around the corners and the roof. There was nowhere left to run.
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